Did you notice that this thread is called "The Joneses", as in keeping up with the Joneses?
"Normal" people inflate house prices so extremely that you can't get a regular 40 hour week job and buy a house in most Coastal metro areas anymore. You have to work too many hours in a high pressure job just to be able to get a house or pay off student loans. "Normal" people convince you that you have to buy the Big Pharma pills instead of staying healthy by exercise, eating well and growing and gathering natural medicine. You'll never see articles about natural medicine in "normal" magazines or TV shows, only Big Pharma because they expressly forbid that kind of information. No profit to be gained. "Normal" people spend so much time working and binge watching on their phones that their children need lots of therapy and expensive toys, when what they really wanted is time with you, their friends and nature to learn about life. The point of the thread is not that everyone should homestead. The idea is that buying lots of stuff and working 80 hours a week on a job you don't like doesn't really make you happy. We are a very greedy culture. If we took the time to enjoy the simpler things in life, I think we would be happier. I live in the suburbs, and that's where I want to live. It feels like you are narrowly defining everyone on this thread inaccurately. Heavy spending on new expensive items is destroying the Earth. If we made fewer purchases and took care of them more, we would have a better environment and better health. Wealth inequality destroys cultures. There is a ton of research on this. The Blue zones are areas of the world, studied by National Geographic, in which people live the longest and are healthiest. Check it out sometime. For example, in the Blue zones, people are the healthiest in the world and probably the happiest, but they are way below average in terms of money. (This has nothing to do with US blue states versus red states). Werner Herzog made a movie about people in Siberia who have nothing! but are extremely happy.