Crazy old week out there in the big bad world, wasn't it? With Mickey Lowry getting found out...again, and Portugal's woes taking precedent over Fine Gael's attempt to get a 'better deal for Ireland' from the bailout. I wish them luck with that. The sharks are focused on Portugal now and there are even bigger ones beginning to circle further inland in Sunny Spain. The Euro is in a mess, and by most accounts the good Ol' USA ain't fairing out much better. Just south of Spain, Libya is in turmoil with Gaddafi followers being wiped out by bombing sortie's from some of the best jet fighters on the planet. Tom Cruise would be proud.
The rebels march toward Tripoli aided by the 'no-fly zone' where some are still allowed to fly. Gaddafi looks doomed, the tyrant may soon be making his way into exile, for if he doesn't the images from the mainstream may shock us more than when they hung Saddam high. All the while the price of oil goes up and up. And up. Regimes in Yemen, Syria, and Bahrain continue to fight the protesters demanding change from the old guard, where freedom of speech practices often end with the ending of life. I watched yesterday as a woman, brutalised by Gaddafi's henchmen speaking out to the world. As she cried, terrified, men tried to silence her, before eventually a coat was placed over her head and she was driven away as journalists demanded answers to where she was to be taken. In anyone's world that's wrong.
As basic freedoms are sought and many die for the right of expression and the opportunity of a better tomorrow, the world seems on the edge of something we may not have seen before. A half a million people took to the streets of London yesterday protesting over the range of cuts to public services implemented by our neighbours fellow 'lefty'-right coalition. That's an admirable turnout. The main body of the protest passed off peacefully, but there was an element among them that decided to take things into their own hands, wrecking havoc as they smashed windows in banks and business they insist are paying almost no taxes, while the ordinary person on the street is left with the bill of bailing out corruption of the highest form, corruption that goes largely unpunished at the top tiers of our societies. It's a fairness issue, as it is here in Ireland, but alas, when did fairness ever come into anything? It was obvious where this elements rage was directed, as they rebelled at the establishment by defacing their places of business, before squaring off with riot police. There were over 220 arrests. This followed similar scenes at the meeting of EU Leaders for some fine dining and making decisions of the important kind earlier in the week. There's definitely a sniff of rebellion around the place.
I didn't watch the Oscars this year. First time in many years. Just didn't seem relevant for some reason. Rambling last night, I came across the winner of Best Documentary, Inside Job and got to see it today. It's an impressive piece of work. Narrated by Matt Damon, it tells the story of the crash of 2008 which spun the world into recession. I have come across the documentaries main protagonists before, mainly in online material. But to have the story, and how all these shysters are in cahoots with one another in their own private little club. A world of privilege where anything goes, and ordinary people are made to pay. It makes one wonder how much of this have we put on ourselves, by time and time again selling out to the one who speaks the best of promise. Most false of course, but sure hasn't that always been the case?
An interesting aspect to yesterdays March in London was the addressing to the crowd of new labour leader Ed Miliband. I went to a March pre-Christmas, ten times smaller and we got...David Begg. Sometimes I see Ireland's future as a truly depressing place and yet, a dreamer still partially exists, that says Ireland can still be all she should be. Getting to that point might be a difficult process, but nothing good ever came without some degree of difficulty.
There's power in people, but it must be done on in the right way. Any other way and I think people are only playing into the hands of those who do still have the influence. Be under no illusion, it's banks first and governments seconds and third , a very small minority in the practice of politics for nobler reasons. Minorities have changed little throughout history, so I guess it's up to ordinary people to change that. Capitalism is corrupt to it's very core, but you won't be taught that in schools. You won't be taught to think about things for yourself by many. Anyone telling you that democracy in it's present form is evolving, is telling you lies. If anything, it's being eroding, one little treaty at a time. If it was a fair playing field this planet would be in better shape. As long as it's not, and we allow people destroy it for money, the ride down the swanny will continue.
Inside Job is worth the 90 minutes, if for nothing else it connects a lot of dots into what happened Stateside, and it might make one or two people go after the truth of what happened here, and especially in Anglo and AIB banks. Once that's done Ireland can begin the long climb back up. There's no place in an evolving society for robbery in broad daylight with absolutely no accountability. Not in any decent one anyway.
I heard Olivia O'Leary a while back express a wish for philosophy to be introduced to education in the early teens. Doubt I've heard a better idea in the past six months. While we are at it, let's educate on the negative impacts of crony Capitalism on society. Oh sorry, I apologise, let's just stick with Olivia's plan. There's a majority out there now that don't need to learn about it. They are living it. So I guess it wouldn't do any harm to make them think about it too? And who knows, in a generation or twelve, we might actually come out the other side. Or as they say in the CIA, 'Shoot that mutha-fuc*er.'