Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Earth Day is coming tomorrow, whoop de ding dong. Most good ideas are subject to the law of inevitable chintz, and the whole hoopla around Earth Day may indeed be the primary modern example (though I am sure that there are many close competitors). What exactly is more absurd, the declining portion of leftists who imagine that 'ecology" poses some "fundamental paradigm" for changing society(and their absurd religious apotheoses in our dear "primitivists) for the better or those who buy into the "propaganda model" as promoted by the official sponsors of such events as Earth Day ? Who knows ?
What I do know is that the official promotion of Earth Day by government and corporation has gutted the original concept of any useful meaning. What I did't realise was how far this process had progressed. the story below is from the Campaign for a Commercial Free Childhood, and it questions the idea of the overwhelming corporate sponsorship of Earth Day. What Molly finds most jaw droppingly amazing is the idea almost mentioned in passing ie "Earth Day shopping". Do people actually do this ? That is truly amazing. Holy Jesus H. Christ ! Turn your back for a minute and the kids and the dog are wrecking the house. It is right up their with the anarcho-nonsense spewed across the internet (using the height of technology) to promote some idea of the end of civilization. The difference is that large numbers of people buy the former idea while the latter is confined to an ever diminishing cult. I guess it's the old Biblical adage of the beam in one's own eye.
In any case, if you don't find the idea of "consuming for the ecology" silly then what can I say ? Welcome to Orwell's dystopia.
Between Sesame's new green Elmo and Nick's Big Green Help, the children's media and marketing industries are going green in a big way this Earth Day. Or are they? In today's Huffington Post, CCFC's Susan Linn and Josh Golin lay out the harms inherent in the environmental lessons promoted by companies whose profits depend on inculcating consumerism in children.

In the coming year, CCFC will work to make the connections between marketing to children and environmental degradation more explicit. If you have ideas for campaigns that highlight this link, please send them to ccfc@jbcc.harvard.edu.

A link to the article is below. Happy Earth Day!
Marketing Earth Day (and Other Stuff) to Children
By Susan Linn and Josh Golin
Have you done your Earth Day shopping yet? Between greeting cards, jewelry, mugs, and teddy bears commemorating the day, its roots in environmental activism have all but been forgotten. Now corporations use Earth Day to sell us on the belief that we can buy our way into ecological sustainability. We can't.

Reducing consumption is essential to preserving the earth's resources and preventing its degradation. The same companies that are painting themselves green depend on the profits they earn convincing us to buy more than we need.

Nowhere is this more obvious, and more troubling, than in the world of children's media and marketing, where companies like Disney, Sesame Workshop, and Nickelodeon are eco-marketing as never before.

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