Wednesday, June 10, 2009


Thrift is a forgotten American Virtue very much in alignment with Wisdom of the Hands. Templeton Press has published three books on the subject of thrift, Franklin's Thrift: The History of a Lost American Virtue, Thrift: A Cyclopedia, and Thrift and Generosity: The Joy of Giving and is attempting to restore a once traditional celebration of "Thrift week" through a website created to promote an understanding of this important virtue. Watch David Blankenship's commentary on the site.

An excerpt from Dr. John M. Templeton, Jr.'s book Thrift and Generosity:
"Thrift in a way that 'cheap' does not, implies an element of human wisdom, of discernment..."

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for this timely post. Although I have spent my whole life being reasonably thrifty in my habits, I do not recall "Thrift Week." However, about a week ago I was given an old book called: "Quotations For Special Occasions" by the late Maud Van Buren. In this book I found 4 pages of quotes dedicated to "Thrift Week" and I found myself asking, "I wonder what week of the year that is?" Thanks to you, I now have my answer.

    "Thrift Week" may have died off around 1966, but even in those days, I still remember people talking about things like saving up to buy a refridgerator or a stove or even furniture. I recall people who did not have a TV or a car. Some didn't even have a telephone. Now we are trying to dig ourselves out of the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression by spending our way back to prosperity. Put another way, we are hoping to spur a boom through the greatest indebtedness in our history, with the hope the boom eventually outpaces the debt it took to spur the boom.

    Clearly, that gambles the whole country, while ignoring everything ever said about "thrift." If it works, let's hope we return to the "thrift" standard of old, which is cheaper and much less risky. If it doesn't work, then "thrift" may be gone forever in this country, replaced by a raging inflation that may destroy most of what is left of America.

    Yes, bring back "Thrift Week" and let's start with the government and big business. Cancel all credit cards for at least one year for everyone to bring back a sense of what it means for government, business, and individuals to live in a cash only economy. "Let them learn thrift!"