So in an article from the Washington Post, which can be accessed from the article "Consumption Tells All" at www.cornersolutions.com, I read some interesting stuff about measuring consumption! Basically, two French photojournalists have spent the last fifteen years going through famous people's trash, organizing what they have found in a "display" and selling it. The article claims that this may be a better way to get to know a star than the National Enquirer or Star magazine!
I could see that. I mean, I have always said that you can tell a lot about people by what's in their wallets and purses, but I never thought about looking through their trash. The rationale is that you can find all sorts of things that describe a persons consumption preferences, which likewise describe their personality, such as what they like to eat, new clothes tags, bad habits, pets, papers, etc. So we are talking about a good way to measure consumption here. We could probably approximate the utilites Britney Spears gets from smoking by the amoung of cigarette cartons in her trash. Or in the civilian world, we could measure the amount of utilities Darcie gets from eating cookies by the number of cookie wrappers in her garbage.
What are the economists thinking? If they want to know what people's consumption preferences are, just go through their trash! Although, I think I would be to scared to go through Christina Aguilera's trash, but watch out Dr. Tufte!