So sad to see countries–and peoples–take the wrong turn, pull the rug from under their own feet, tear themselves apart. Author Elif Shafak reflects on the path Turkey is taking.
“… But then sex and relationships are one of the last remaining bastions of unreconstructed racial prejudice.”
“Bosses of top British companies will have made more money by lunchtime on Thursday than the average UK worker will earn in the entire year… The chief executives of FTSE 100 companies are paid a median average of £3.45m a year, which works out at 120 times the £28,758 collected by full-time UK workers on average… The title for the highest paid listed company boss this year is almost certain to be Jeff Fairburn, the chief executive of housebuilder Persimmon, who is on track to collect a £110m bonus.”
The political right have so successfully sold their system of “equality of opportunity”, of “meritocracy” and “social mobility” to the masses that not only do we not realise that this neoliberal dream obfuscates the truth of increasing inequality, even more effectively, we don’t want to realise this, because then we would be without the reality and the hope, however illusory.
To bring change, we have to want change.
“A more equal society would mean everyone has shelter, healthcare, education, food and time to rest and play as well as work. It would mean not discriminating on grounds of identity, sex or skin colour. It would mean a system of “public luxury and private sufficiency”: of facilities such as libraries and galleries and parks which could be participated in by everyone. It would involve foregrounding egalitarian goals and dramatically curbing corporate power and high pay. It would mean heeding the call for universal public services. It would mean prioritising climate change as an issue that affects everyone.”
If we make rational choices to reduce factors such as inequality, explosive population growth, the rate at which we deplete natural resources and the rate of pollution – all perfectly doable things – then we can avoid collapse and stabilise onto a sustainable trajectory …
Unfortunately, some experts believe such tough decisions exceed our political and psychological capabilities.
The most sinister aspect is that it won’t appear at all sinister that they can make it practically impossible to not participate.
We know how to solve homelessness. We know how to reduce poverty. We know how to eliminate starvation. We know how to reduce violence, and discrimination, and mental illness. Why aren’t we doing any of these things?
I wish more people would start asking themselves these questions. I wish more people would start asking themselves these questions and acting on them. But I’ll settle for more people just asking themselves these questions.
Don’t be put off by answers such as: Because people are greedy. Because people are mean. Because people are stupid. These are real, valid answers but they should not be the end of the discussion, rather the beginning of change. Once enough people recognise this, then we can start making things better.
Social media are useful tools. But like all useful tools, we grow to rely on them too much. Our once balanced intercourse becomes unhealthy and the tool starts to use us.
Yes, social media are just tools, but as much as we enjoy them and rely on them, when we finally recognise the harm they are doing, maybe it’s time to put these harmful tools away.
Worth reading and acting on. Some important thoughts on violence, civic duty, consumerism. Bad, good, bad, ICYMI.
One year after the 2016 Presidential Election, things are much worse than anticipated. America has changed, the world has changed. And things are only going to escalate in the coming years. Resistance has been surprisingly strong but it must continue. And we need to examine the cause for this horror in each and every one of us.
Capitalism is not Democracy. Capitalism is not Democracy. Capitalism is no–