That by-product of unfettered capitalism, the Consumer Society, has changed more than values, we now divide society up according to isms and brands, isms having turned ideas into ideological articles of faith. As for branding? Branding reduces people and things to marketable commodities; image first substance second.
The world is chocka block with isms, have you noticed?All those 1/4 acre blocks of standardisation surrounded by electric fencing - humanism, holism, anarchism, socialism, liberalism, racism, feminism, egalitarianism, sexism, hedonism, pluralism, atheism, spiritualism, skepticism, et cetera. Each one an icon of exclusivity; each one a potential straightjacket of critical thinking. Ism-ism is the domain of the true believer, a state of mind where free thinking is cordoned off by faith.
Fundamentalism - a twighlight zone of illusion; theists labelling atheists heathens while atheists call theists fools. Multiculturalists entrenched in a culture of tribal entitlement and Feminism with its army of speech police. Where have the common sense values gone? And how do we break down this self imposed division?
And then there's the reductionism of branding: the Obama brand, the Olympic brand, the Nth Korea brand the House of Windsor brand, the Dali Lama brand. Branding once was getting your buns stamped with a hot iron, but now it means .. well, the same thing. Even the planet is a brand! How did we fall into this trap? The me generation is not new, it's been creeping up on us since the 80s but today it's in full bloom thanks to self belief that borders on obsession. Modesty anyone?