Other "Native Americans" would settle in one area and then exploit the natural resources until they were exhausted - and then move on to more fertile territory. The idea that certain peoples or races are more respectful of Mother Nature is something of a fraud.
The short answer is, it is far more "efficient" to build something new on an assembly line than to repair it again and again, piecemeal, over time. More efficient in terms of labor, materials, cost, and the environment.
Other items simply cannot be repaired. While old-fashioned leather shoes could be taken to the "cobbler" to have new soles and heels installed (as I used to do when I worked at the Patent Office), modern sneakers and walking shoes are made of expanded polyurethane rubber, molded into one piece. Not only can they not be repaired once they come unglued from the uppers, they largely are worn out at that point, as the polyurethane has compressed permanently and the shoes offer no support.
Note that the law in Sweden addressed the VAT tax, which is less of an issue in the USA. The Value-Added Tax, or VAT is a huge tax slapped on the price of goods and services in most European countries. The proposed law in Sweden simply halves this tax for repair costs, and also allows the owner to deduct the income taxes paid by the repairman for labor incurred for the repair (how this is calculated is anyone's guess, it must be a bit of an accounting nightmare).
The wonderful thing is, of course, that we can see how such a tax strategy works out and whether it is advantageous. If it does provide some benefit to society, then maybe other countries will adopt it. If it turns out to be a boondoggle, maybe let it slide - sort of like this "guaranteed minimum income" craziness that is sweeping Europe at the moment.
Recently, one of my computers again crashed. It appears the video card again went South. I can buy a used video card on eBay for a few bucks and maybe get the machine to work again. But the machine is almost a decade old, which is a lifetime in the computer world. Is it worth my time and effort to troubleshoot and repair a machine that might have a useful service life of only a year or two? A machine that is already woefully obsolete?
That indeed, is the question.