Wednesday, March 16, 2005

BBC NEWS Today

Cue random media comments.

Monsanto say farmers want to grow (their) GM crops. Screw the safety aspects, I say. How about the balance of power/economy? An economy in the hands of a few, nice.

Oh good, more oil.

Iraq MPs sworn in amid deadlock: "The Shia United Iraqi Alliance, which won just over half the seats in the transitional assembly, has been locked in talks for several weeks with the Kurdish bloc."

Has anyone done any analysis into the success of "democracy" within particular societies? Are there any comparisons, say, between how democracy evolved in different places in the democratised world, and how applicable such methods are when thrust into a region of jarring factions? Sometimes it seems like democracy is touted as the panacea for all ills, but no-one's actually stopped to work out how/if it works. More proof that mere democracy (and the freedom of the individual) isn't really the end goal?


Talking of the freedom of the individual, I'm realising more and more recently just how non-free the self is. The cultivation of the individual today faces more pressure from outside influences telling it how to behave for their purposes than ever before. Science, globalisation and technology have been used far more for controlling purposes than for "knowledgeful" purposes - a viewpoint I accept begrudgingly - and as such the encroachment of something greater than humans* upon the mindspace of the individual is greater than ever. I think if we continue like this - an unchecked exploration and exploitation of formal knowledge without corresponding philosophical/spiritual advancement - then the structures and hierarchies we look at with disdain historically will continue to exist subterraneanly, entrenching themselves into our technology, our processes and our thoughts to an even greater extent.

* What is this collective consciousness? Collective organisation and institution is an odd, but very real, concept that seems to have more control over the individual than the individual. Which is more important?

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