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Posts Tagged ‘www.adbusters.org’

I stumbled across this video as I was searching through Adbuster’s website.  I found it extremely impactful to show side by side a lifestyle that we sometimes forget affects those around the globe.  It is simple to purchase something like our shoes, something we find necessary, without a thought to what went into that process.  The same lifestyle we build for our children and for ourselves, often degrades (directly and indirectly) those families, those children, in some strange sort of opposite way. I find it interesting that economists can argue such things that our foreign investment raises living standards or “lifts all boats.”  How is sweatshop labor justifiable?  How can we, as consumers, or simply as citizens that expect our own rights, keep allowing this?

I think we often forget the impact we have in the world.  I don’t know who to blame…the media, the government, the corporations, ourselves?  It’s a difficult answer because I think it does put responsibility on our own shoulders in some sort of a way.  But how can one even know of this responsibility unless you actually search what globalization causes, and how that links back to our consumer goods, our businesses, our government?  The fact that economists, especially right now, claim that these practices are justifiable, and argue that these myths (globalization lifts all boats, free trade benefits consumers, etc.) shows that they must not be here, right now.

“The race to the bottom,” or the downard spiral of national outbidding for cheap labor, will not end until we  take some kind of responsibility, and part of this means evaluating everything we consume.  I appreciate this video’s simplicity, something I find more impactful sometimes.  To see those comparisons side by side truly shows the widening gap between the rich and poor; the fact that “In 1999, the wealth held by the world’s 475 billionares was greater than the combined income of the poorest half of all the people in the world.”(Sarah Anderson, John Cavanagh, Thea Lee-The Field Guide to the Global Economy).  I think this is  something where most people agree on.  Most people would find this intolerable and unjust.  I guess it is easy to forget, or not even know when the picture on the shoebox, or the tag on our clothing does not tell us exactly what went into making that product.

I highly recommend that people check out Adbusters when they have a chance.  It is a sort of journal about our product-obsessed cultures…a “journal of the mental environment.”  There are more videos along with this one if you search through the site.  http://www.adbusters.org.

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