I was going to entitle this article “The current BAME*1 game diversion”, but, Greta Thunberg’s words are far more powerful, and, more to the point.
Dr Erich Schumacher made strong arguments against economic growth in his 1973 book “Small is beautiful (Economics as if people mattered)” ; in my view the most important guide to a sustainable future written in the last 100 years. I wish our business leaders and politicians had read it and then acted on it.
My book, and his, explain in detail how silly the myths are of ever increasing economic growth. It is essential reading for anyone who still thinks economic growth and technology are viable solutions to climate change, or anything else for that matter..
Dr Schumacher’s wisdom and foresight have been ignored but his foundation still works for enabling low tech solutions for the world’s poorest people.
However, first I must put the current childish media storm into perspective, but then move quickly on.
The current, massive and excited press coverage has hijacked far more important issues. Journalists, politicians and so-called celebrities have jumped on the BAME bandwagon which is so much easier to write and read about!
The murder of George Floyd was recorded in gruesome detail and was committed by an ignorant white policeman while three police colleagues looked on. Both he and his 3 fellow officers, one of whom was yellow, should clearly face murder charges.
The fact that the three “onlookers” were, at first, not charged was clear evidence of the systemic racism in the USA police force.
The USA court case and sentencing should be enough, I hope, to start the end of prevailing racism in the developed world. We have a long way to go.
That said, I think the following crises deserve far more journalistic and political effort.
The issues we should all be far more angry about are irritatingly nuanced and therefore not so easy to resolve or discuss, so the press ignore them. Celebrities and those looking for a “photo-op” take the knee” instead.
The problem is that what follows is not simply black and white.
The BAME game of ‘Taking the Knee’ should be replaced by bending the ear of journalists and politicians who have the power, and voice to resolve these continuing iniquities:
If the covid-19 crisis has done one good thing it is to show us all that global action can be taken and ‘unheard of’ amounts of money can be found if the political will is there.
Businesses will not take action so Governments must force the necessary actions mentioned below and we, and particularly the young, therefore have the job of annoying our politicians into action.
1) long term immediate action is needed on climate change; the consequences of inaction are:-
- the loss of bio-diversity which is the key to a balanced and healthier world
- water monetisation and privatisation of supply will continue to be offered as a solution by “investors” rather than reversed as it should be
- a Wall Street based water investment hedge fund is busy making plans (See “Lords of Water” a film by Jérôme Fritel currently being aired on Al Jazeera)
- the UK is still the only country in the world to have sold its water to non-resident owners who pay no tax here!
- Great job Maggie (Prime Minister Thatcher for those who are too young to remember her catastrophic crimes)
- water wars will intensify (they started in the Middle East and Africa some 15 years ago)
- (to name two of the worst)
- Israel v Palestine
- (to name two of the worst)
2) long term immediate action is needed on population control; the consequences of inaction are:-
- water is a finite commodity and is falling far less where it is needed most, leading to …
- ever increasing human misery in Africa, South America and Asia as water poverty becomes worse
- governments’ action is needed and that is where our “aid budget” should be concentrated, i.e. family planning education rather than supporting India’s space missions!
3) Long term action needed to stop globalised corporations getting any bigger; the consequences of which inaction are:-
- the ridiculous situation where governments seem unable to collect vital tax revenues to pay for the mess which globalised corporations create, viz.
- clearing up the plastic waste they produce which is killing sea animals, vegetation and us
- the continuing concentration of wealth into ever smaller groups of global businesses who care little for people or the disastrous mess they make
- the increasing influence those huge global corporations seem to have have on our emasculated political leadership
- governments not realising that localisation is far better, greener and sustainable for homo sapiens.
- Trump is obviously a disaster for the world and wrong on most things BUT he is right about Huawei and China in general.
- Boris seems to be listening, at last, and reviewing Huawei’s 4G & 5G presence here in the UK
4) Long term immediate action on reducing China’s influence in the world
- Covid-19 has, surely at last, made obvious to all of us that their cultural food practices, and the current totalitarian tyrannical government, are a danger to the world
- Covid-20, 21 22 etc are just waiting in the wings as new bat viruses transfer to pangolins in Chinese so-called “wet-markets”
- China’s “not so cheap now” labour producing cheap and poor quality stuff that we should be producing locally
- unnecessary goods air flights causing ever more air pollution
- unnecessary sea journeys causing air and sea pollution delivering inferior products to the world
- Governments have to take action now to stop China’s power mad politicians from buying up the world with money that simply does not exist
One could go on, but one has probably said enough 😉
*1 BAME: Black, Asian Minority Ethnic