Man’s Best Friend

Consider An Alternatvie View About Cars

When I am able, I like to include a respected intellectual’s theories and thoughts on a particular issue to reinforce my own thought. I have taken this opportunity to include a direct quote from world-renowned psychologist and humanist Erich Fromm on the non-functional, hence pathogenic, consumption that the private automobile represents to human beings as a dead possession.


The best example is the private automobile. It can be said that a car is functional property and for this reason not equivalent to dead possession.


Fromm argues otherwise –

“This would be true if the private automobile were really functional (to the human organism) – but it is not. It does not stimulate any of man’s power. It is a distraction, enables a person to run away from himself, produces a false sense of strength, helps form a sense of identity based on the brand of car the person drives; it prevents him from walking and thinking, is sufficiently exacting to make a concentrated conversation impossible, and it stimulates competition. One would need to write a book in order to give a full description of the irrational and pathogenic function of the type of consumption that the private automobile represents … Non-functional consumption weakens or even destroys man’s productive development, deprives him of awareness, and transforms him into a thing.”

—Fromm, 1993


In the twenty-first century, the car does not stand alone in the non-functional consumption category. There are many such distractions. How many do you own? Or should that be, how many own you?


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Many Thanks

Adam Senex -x-