Friday, 19 February 2010

Ready-made rip-offs

I'll start by saying I make no excuses for who and what I am. If you find me too acidic, or too cynical, well I suggest you hit the "Back" button on your browser and we'll part ways.

The thing is I don't suffer fools gladly and I have absolutely NO time for self-serving corrupt people pretending to do what they do for the greater good of us all.

There's a blog by Emre Sayarer about a circumnavigation of the world by bicycle, called ThisIsNotForCharity. Somebody once accused Emre Sayarer of suffering from a "young man's anger". He is still young, but I am not. Despite that, I suffer from that same anger, and I believe I will do so for all my days.

So what am I angry about, you ask? A great many things, but if we must prioritise, then surely we need to start at a) those doing the most damage and b) those best placed to turn things around.

I'd like to skip A for a moment and go straight to B:
Surely our elected politicians and elected government has a sworn duty to protect us, to fight for us and to make things better for us? Isn't THAT the reason we elected them in the first place?
Making things better for us does NOT mean serving large conglomerates, or going to war on the say-so of a foreign country that has an appalling human-rights record, but insists on pretending to be the world's policeman.
Making things better for us does NOT mean enriching themselves, nor does it mean making promises they have no intention of keeping.
Making things better does NOT mean using our money to bail out greedy fat-cat bankers, nor using our money to subsidise the car industry.
Yet our illustrious leaders have done all these things, and more!
And then they have the NERVE to get upset at our anger when they were caught with their hand in the cookie jar.

To get back to point A, the bankers I've already mentioned, but the recent near-collapse of banks is far from the worst of it. Various banks are involved in the arms trade in one way or the other, and the arms trade is a trade in human death. How can we allow these corporations to export death, then knight their executives? How can we hold them up as model citizens? What difference (if any!) is there between them and Auschwitz guards?
Some corporations will tell you all about their "ethical" purchasing policies, their community projects and similar initiatives, but they won't tell you how they deliberately drive smaller, independent businesses into the ground purely to increase their shareholders' dividends. They are in fact destroying local communities.

We get local councils following government's lead in making sure the wishes of international corporations are met , and that the car remains king. Burn more oil, because Shell wants the profits and because Shell feels they haven't destroyed enough of Nigeria and that many more Nigerians must die! Burn more oil because BP's awfull human rights breaches doesn't matter!

PEOPLE are dying, every day. But again it isn't that simple: RICH people are living longer than ever before, while POOR people are dying in greater numbers than ever before. And you call this fair?

Now then, what exactly have our MP's and or government DONE to change this situation? How are they making things better for PEOPLE?

Hmmm....well, they started the old my-daddy's-bigger-than-your-daddy party-political farce again, trying to detract from how far off the rails the lot of them are. Oh yeah, they also did the bailing out the bankers and the car industry thing. Odd that so many small business failed but nothing was done to help them. Perhaps it is because the small business owners couldn't oil the gears enough?

We're living in a first-world country whose economy was built and strengthened using slavery and drug trade, a country that invented concentration camps and we're dancing to the tune of bankers, oil companies and the car industry.

And you know what? Apparently neither our government, nor any other political party has the guts, the integrity or the courage to do anything about this at all.