As we've seen, John and Elly seem to behave as if they and they alone have the right to decide who gets to dispose of the fruits of their labor. We see this when they decide to idly toss items their children want and latch on to things they want to give away, we see it when they reveal that their main objection to lost or destroyed property is how it affects them and we'll see it when John goes into a blind panic when his eyesore model train layout is threatened. On first blush, this looks like a parody of socialist thinking in that two people who aren't very bright or nice arrogate to themselves the right to decide who gets what but there's something about them that differentiates them from a limousine liberal. Your typical member of the mushhead left has pretty much convinced himself that he or she is acting in the behalf of the person whose stuff has been glommed on to but that isn't the case with the Patterswine. Having watched what they do and seen how they justify it, it's sort of clear to me that people and objects only have value in so far as they feed into the need John and Elly have to make up for the imaginary sacrifices of their allegedly deprived childhoods. Since they've made a pagan god of misaimed martyrdom, one could say that they believe that they have a divine right to everything under the Sun so as to make up for having to grow up amongst cheerful, hard-working poor people who didn't understand that they had to buy every piece of crap advertised on the idiot box to be good parents.