I liked this TED Talk by Tim Jackson especially his snappy analysis of where our current economic models go awry:
We spend money we don’t have, on things we don’t need, to create impressions that won’t last, on people we don’t care about
He’s referring to how we try to raise our status by consuming material goods. I spent some time last week playing improv status games in the context of training facilitators. There are myriad ways to change our status in relationships that can be very satisfying and require no consumption at all.