Preachy old me

So then, can rock music change the world? I guess that’s the question everyone should be asking themselves today.

The other day Tractor girl was writing about the problems of post modernism on her blog. The problem is that such a complex theory gets reduced to a soundbite. I think this is the same problem which faces the Make Poverty History campaign. No one whats to sit through a lecture on why European and American farming subsidies hurt the trade of developing nations. People would rather listen to Coldplay.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not critising the movement or it’s aims. I just don’t think things will really change until the average consumer on the street makes the link between (for example) buying certain brands of high street clothing and the conditions of sweat shop workers in Tijuana or Malaysia. Perhaps as well as having a Make Poverty History campaign we should have a Make Excessive Consumption History campaign too…

Sorry I’m getting preachy in my old age but someone once told me a story that highlighted the problems of capitalism and it’s worth mentioning them here.

A man from New York went on holiday to the coast of Mexico. Whilst he was there he met a Mexican fisherman by the sea and they began to talk. The New Yorker asked the Mexican how he spent his days and the Mexican said he went fishing for the morning and then when he had collected enough to feed his family he spent the rest of the afternoon napping. The New Yorker asked him "Why don’t you spend all day fishing, then you can sell the fish you don’t eat? You could then use the profit to employ other people to work for you and eventually maybe you could open an office in New York selling fish all over the world". The Mexican looked puzzled and asked what he would do with all the profit. The New Yorker scratched his head for a while and replied "Well you could retire, buy a house next to the sea and maybe do a bit of fishing"

Yeah I know it’s a bit of a lame punchline but it makes the point.


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