Know who has your money
I realise I’m starting to sound a bit ‘conspiracy theorist’ but I assure you that I am years away from moving into a cave and wrapping my head in Alfoil.
I am currently devoted to finding out where my money is going and having a say in the way it’s spent.
I have changed my super fund to Australian Ethical Super.
I have applied to consolidate my debt with Sydney Credit Union.
Next up is energy providers, telcos and groceries (not just the store but the individual brands as well).
Then I am going to have a serious look at travel companies, hotels and airlines.
I don’t want my money to be misspent. I don’t want to contribute to the demise of the planet, human rights abuses or any company that screws people over in order to make more money for a bunch of rich people. Incidentally, that is why I will not be voting for the Liberals in the next election.
Recently I read a list that detailed which clothing labels treat their manufacturing employees well (there’s a lot of information about this here). You would naturally assume that expensive brands would be manufactured in a more ethical way but this is not the case. Kmart did OK. ASOS, not so much.
There is a perception that making ethical choices is going to cost more and, in some cases, this is true. Organic food is more expensive. Green energy is more expensive. But as with everything, it’s a matter of size and scale. The higher the demand, the lower the cost.
There is nothing more dangerous in this world than a huge, faceless fund whose only purpose is to make more money for its investors. Who do you think funds palm oil plantations and unethical forestry initiatives? Who prevents life-saving research from being pursued because it’s going to kill a profitable product line? Who suppresses public health information and publishes misleading ‘research’ to make sure people keep buying things that are killing them? Who makes money out of jails and detention centres?
There are many questions that I want answers to. I urge you to ask questions, and demand answers, from your suppliers (and government representatives) too.