Friday, October 5, 2007

Channeling this nervous energy into something productive

Okay, so the highlight of my week was a comment I received - actually the highlight of my life right behind Al Fleischman's raving reviews about my writing. Regardless it started me thinking last night after listening in on a conversation - Dave Oram was explaining his lifestyle and maturation in the process of his art to the point where he does what he does because that's who he is - not about pandering to a niche for commercial success. Leaha and I started talking on the walk home from the gallery show (which you should all check out by the way), about how I just need to start writing. Writing - and not just blogging, seriously who really reads all this anyways? So not that it's a giant step up, and some would argue that's it's even less respectable than blogging these days, but the PEAK has a comments section on the back, why don't I start with a piece for that. The topic? Eric Volz.
I sat in front of my laptop yesterday for over an hour - frustrated, I knew what I wanted to say - that this is all crazy, why don't you care, why doesn't any of us care about anything for that matter? SFU claims to be a radical campus, and yet we are lame, apathetic and commerically motivated to the same degree as the rest of the population. SPIRG, Womyn's Center and Out on Campus maybe the only footholds left, and you know they're more or less ignored by the student population. So what I started with is a failure because I couldn't find a way to articulate myself out of my anger and feeling of helplessness, came to me on the bus today made me wonder why I didn't bring my laptop with me to work like I had planned - I would have stopped, sat down at the nearest dry spot and typed - it all came to me in a flood of clarity - that is now slowly coming back into focus with the help of my americano misto. Eric Volz is a political scapegoat for the globalization movement. In that with his work he was seeking to work against globalization - a nasty beast to try to stop - as seen with WTO situations etc. This thought started when talking to Leaha this morning about finding a way to make the situation, the reality of the situation, applicable to our peers. Globalization is in many ways a glitzy form of imperialism - instead of raping and pillaging the people and resources - we merge and invest and then destroy in the name of productivity and in supposedly the best interest of the local population. For our peers, have you ever considered what was destroyed in the name of your $1000 all inclusive booze fest in Mexico or ones of the Caribbean islands? The government and officials aren't concerned as they see dollar signs - and the same is happening as we move further into Central America. American imperialism, cloaked in the glories of globalization versus those who seek the sustainable, socio-economically beneficial tourism. No gawk and awe, or little children pushing goods on the beaches - but tourism that defends the land and builds the economy and social development via education and empowerment of the native populations. Resorts that use local resources, grey water, solar power, teach conservation and built over canopies of sensitive eco-systems, meanwhile providing local jobs, preserving the fragile environment and allowing the native population to retain their identities apart from Las Vegas style zoo that's proliferated along the Caribbean coast line.

So where do our peers come in? They want cheap holidays - and ethical coffee, clothes and produce - hypocritical - yes, more to the point, the latter aren't truly important, more a status symbol, like the wrist bands, or Gap RED jeans. Both issues need to be addressed for what they really are - if you truly care that your bean are shade-grown, organic, fair-traded, then why not your vacation - in the you spend the same amount in the end - 3.00 x 5 x 52 weeks - roughly 780 dollars for just a regular latte.
I'm going to do some more research of course - check out the numbers involved and read up on my Arundhati - see if I can fish out a good quote or two on her opinion of globalization and public apathy.

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