First things first, the latest occupation-related news:
More than 50 anti-Wall Street protesters arrested including a retired bishop in NY
Bid to evict St Paul’s protest camp begins at high court
Unsurprisingly, the attempted occupation of Duarte Square fell flat… but that’s okay. It’s not ending the movement by any stretch of the imagination, after all. As for St. Pauls? I guess we shall see what occurs, but at least, eviction isn’t likely to happen in the last bit of this year. That’s a victory of sorts, insomuch that the City of London tried to bargain to where the camp left of its own accord at New Year’s Day. And as time rolls on, it is becoming obvious that the physical camps that the movement started with aren’t necessarily needed to anchor the protest, so…
I also want to offer some food for thought:
The Walmartization of America Redux…
I find this piece nothing short of fantastic, if horrifying. I suspect that we all always knew that this was the case, but were in denial about it. I’m just as guilty as the next person; as someone in self-employ, I shop as frugally as I can manage. I don’t consider responsible shopping to be the refuge of the wealthy either, but it takes awhile to break out of the cheap (if valueless) comforts the box store provides. I, and we all, should want to break out of this mold, if only because:
Half of America is officially poor
Income inequality growing faster in UK than any other rich country, says OECD
As said, I can understand wanting to save money… but at what cost? To steamroll ourselves into poverty on the backs of the even poorer? While I do concur that these huge corporations are taking our money and hording it rather than pouring it back into the economy, our drive for cheap does us no real favors. We cannot buy our ways out of this hole, no matter what we’re told, and the only real solution I can think of is trying to genuinely buy local as we can. Produce and meat can be obtained via communal farms. As someone lacking all skills in sewing, I can’t exactly extol making ones’ own clothing (though if you can, you rock my socks), and I can’t really get on anyone’s tits about buying electronics. I know I like mine too much to fuss at people for buying them, but I can encourage people to think about how often they actually ‘need’ new gadgets. Each of those high-tech toys uses rare earth elements, pollute like a mofo… is it really worth it to have a new cell phone every other year, or to get the latest and greatest console that you don’t have time to use?
It’s all just food for thought – consider it well… and have a pleasant Monday!