Many conservatives buy into what are essentially frugality cults, websites where people get approval and sometimes cash money by preaching a false gospel that spending pennies per day to feed growing children low-protein, low-fat diets is Godly stewardship of financial resources. Even though a suspiciously large number of such websites are talking about lowering food costs to pay off mysterious and conveniently unexplained credit card debt.
This website is a prime example. The woman gardens in a desert, and not the water-conserving kinds of plants one might grow in a desert.
Her menus are suboptimal for growing children, heavy on the bread and light on the delicious meatums. And she is just one example of many. Something I have noticed on these sorts of sites is an obsession with salvation by food control, as if spending no money on food will compensate for out of control spending everywhere else in the budget.
Nobody in America really spends that much on food, it’s cheap here, even high-quality super-local foodie-food is relatively cheap compared to what other Westerners have to fork over. We all, regardless of income level spend maybe 20% max, and 10% is much more common. That’s not going to solve your budget woes when you’ve got two car notes and five student loans and a plasma screen in every room and you take a vacation twice a year…on 45k. Yep, that’s based on actual Christians! That such a Christian family might ‘only’ spend 100 dollars a month on ‘once a month’ freezer meals for a family of six is simply not enough savings to cover all those credit card vacations and consumer goods you bought on those really cool sales.
There is a palpable desperateness to the words of so many food frugality preachers, something sad and improperly ordered in their advocacy of unhealthy behaviors and attitudes towards food and financial stewardship and, most importantly, Our Lord.
God doesn’t want us to deprive our children and ourselves of a basic need out of a loathing at our crazy spending in other parts of our lives.
And frugality cultism further makes people think their reasonable, modest food budgets are ridiculous extravagances (like the secular myth that a woman staying home is an evil luxury) when they are reasonable, healthy and of good quality.
Another day I’ll discuss the obsession with ‘diverse diet’ and ‘fruits and vegetables’ brought to us from those heretical Seventh Day Adventists and further promoted by, well, mentally ill vegans (the deficiencies veganism makes likely correlate heavily with mental health problems).
Today is not that day, though!