Thursday, April 2, 2009

Paradoxical Madness


I have been seeing a lot of articles like this one in the last few days reporting on the anti-capitalist rallies in London. The protesters are forming their anti-capitalist rallies around the arrival of the G-20 conference. 

What I find comically hypocritical is how the protesters are going about organizing their efforts and tactics. The groups are using texting and twitter to organize and stay mobile. I just think that is classic. You have a bunch of people protesting capitalism, yet they are utilizing the fruits of innovation that have been made possible only through capitalism for their cause. These cutting edge advancements in communication and technology represent the cutting edge innovators that are only found in capitalist countries. When was the last time an African country funded an internet start up? I also think it is a little gutless to protest against capitalism when it is one of the main reasons that they have the right and ability to protest. Pre-capitalist England would have seen protesters like this jailed or even beheaded. Capitalism and democracy are not always necessarily rowing the ship in the same direction if you will, but they are both important foundations of most of the prosperous nations on this earth.

Maybe I am being a little to judgemental and general in my observations but I liken protesters such as these to the hippie counter culture movement of the 70's. It just seems like a lot of youth angst directing their pent up aggression towards the very system that has allowed them to enjoy one of the highest standards of living the world has ever seen. Even our nation's poor typically enjoy a higher standard of living than many non-capitalist countries. Take a look at North Korea with its epidemic hunger issues and I think it is a little harder to fault capitalism as the root of all evil. The gap is widening between the rich and the poor and I think that is something to be concerned about, and I am not discounting the struggles of our nation's poor. I am saying that everything is relative, and as bad as things are consistently portrayed by the media we live in an era of untold wealth and opportunity that has never been seen on this earth before. 

6 comments:

Steve Kasperson said...

I remember living in Denmark during the Reagan administration, and how the Danes didn't like him at all. I couldn't understand this for a while, until one day I drove to the beach with some Danish friends, and drove past this odd structure, which I asked them about. They were truly shocked that I didn't know what it was - which was a U.S. radar system. In a way, they felt oppressed by the U.S. government. They didn't like to be victimized by a powerful nation flexing its muscle. I get the feeling that many of these protestors are feeling something similar, that they are being punished by institutions that are completely outside of their control. Most European countries have a more socialist government, funded by capitalist economies. I find them to be somehow more "civilized", even though there isn't great wealth, there is also effectively no poverty. I think that when citizens find their culture to be benevolent, even if highly taxing, they are okay with it.

Levi J Sheppard said...

Solid web logs recently, my friend. Very solid guest blog the other day as well. It kills me that more people don't post comments to your insights more often... I hope you're at least getting emails and what have you from friends at least. I'm working on my guest post... but in the meantime I just thought I'd say what's up.

On a completely unrelated side note... tell me that you noticed that Ben Linus's dad in Lost is Uncle Rico from Napoleon Dynamite. Couldn't help but notice.

Matt Bader said...

Steve,
Awesome insights. I can definitely see how our country, especially in the last few years, can give that impression. I think a weakness in my post is that I am writing about primarily English protesters but I am writing about a mentality, and from a viewpoint, that is American. I think the Swedes are a prime example of what you are talking about. However, I would say that I didn't sign up for Sweden and neither did the majority of the protesters in this article. I know there is a lot to be said for self determination and there is a sense of pride in your own country of birthright so my argument isn't the strongest, but there is always the opportunity to be an expatriate. Thanks for the awesome comments and I will see you at hockey.
Badski

Matt Bader said...

Levi,
Uncle Rico RULES!! Haha I was just telling Heidi that was him the other night and she had no clue. That was the first thing I thought of him in like season 3. Thanks for the feedback and I will be looking forward to the guest post. The readership is picking up a bit, especially after my guest post. Hopefully people enjoy it and hopefully I can get some more guest posts and mix it up a bit. Hope all is well.
Badski

Matt Bader said...

Levi,
Uncle Rico RULES!! Haha I was just telling Heidi that was him the other night and she had no clue. That was the first thing I thought of him in like season 3. Thanks for the feedback and I will be looking forward to the guest post. The readership is picking up a bit, especially after my guest post. Hopefully people enjoy it and hopefully I can get some more guest posts and mix it up a bit. Hope all is well.
Badski

Matt Bader said...

Levi,
Uncle Rico RULES!! Haha I was just telling Heidi that was him the other night and she had no clue. That was the first thing I thought of him in like season 3. Thanks for the feedback and I will be looking forward to the guest post. The readership is picking up a bit, especially after my guest post. Hopefully people enjoy it and hopefully I can get some more guest posts and mix it up a bit. Hope all is well.
Badski