I don't really know, so maybe I'll just rant for now about what went through my mind upon a recent visit through Farifax County. Some people use too many resources. The reason I hated Hollywood's collective global warming lecture at this year's Oscars is because the lifestyle of those privileged people of inconceivable wealth are much more consumptive than the rest of us. This culture is promoted to the rest of us by magazines, tabloids, and music videos that idealize big cars, fancy (though often gaudy) homes, and general profligate living. I don't know how to change that immediately unless some of what people value changes and some of what the media prioritizes changes. Daunting, right?
Furthermore, the ambitions of developers and automakers to ever-expand their business growth has hijacked policy making for many years. The resulting communities are by virtue of their design promoting wasteful habits, like driving to a nearby store that may only be a few blocks away because sidewalks don't exist and there are only arterial (not artillery) roads. Accompanying this sprawl is an aesthetic discordance, between the noise pollution of cars and trucks, the bland, gaudy excess of the homes, and that proliferation of one of the ugliest sights created by humanity--though today one of the most necessary: the parking lot.
A drive through parts of Fairfax County is case in point of the increasing decadence of many well-heeled people who build or buy sprawling mansions in gaudy Italianate, French Maison, or Georgian style. Not too far away at Mt. Vernon, the home of George Washington, one can marvel at the (relatively) small domicile of one of Virginia's then-wealthiest men. How did we go from that to this:
I don't know, perhaps I'm being too
aphoristic didactic and condescending. I guess I just don't feel like I need twin Sub Zs, vacation homes, elaborate sculptures in my front yard, and 30 feet ceilings. (P.S., through "researching" this article, I came across a pretty funny website called LA Curbed, which has a McMansions archive that details the real estate listings in that most ostentatious part of the country).