Wednesday, October 15, 2008

American Dream: Humble Pie--EAT IT! (Blog Action Day)

In conjunction with Blog Action Day, I repost from Social Seppuku the video (3:54) that Jess Wundrem created from M. Yu's post. The United States faces an economic meltdown. How does this relate with the state of the world?

Blog Action Day is an annual nonprofit event to unite the world’s bloggers, podcasters and videocasters to post about the same issue on the same day to raise awareness and trigger a global discussion. This year's topic is "Poverty." If a picture is worth 1000 words, this video is worth 700 billion. In fact, not even knowing M. Yu--nor if s/he is gay or straight--I proposed. It was love at first viewing.

Caveat: The world is not pretty or pleasant for many people. Expect to see that in the video. Don't watch it unless you're prepared to see reality. Any/all thoughts on poverty are welcome in the comments; support Blog Action Day by voicing them.


Mauigirl said...

Excellent video - something we should all keep in mind when we think about our own situations.

FranIAm said...

I saw that too- it is exceptional and tragic.

Thank you!

Dusty said...

I am putting this up on Sirens B.E..hope that is ok w/you...we have a few posts up for Poverty Blog Action Day.

Missy said...

Thank you.

Randal Graves said...

So what all you socialists - wait, we doing that with the banks - um, you communists are saying is that unfettered consumerism is bad? Gordon Gekko must be rolling over in his grave.

thailandchani said...

I can't get beyond the idea that it is the cultural relationship to "stuff", using ownership of it as a determinant of human value. That is at the root of it. If we change our relationship to consumption, it will become obvious that there is really plenty for all of us.

Using it as a social marker automatically creates a hierarchy - and the hierarchy creates poverty.

That's just one narrow thought on it. :)


DivaJood said...

It's a powerful video, BE, because it speaks to the heart of the matter - our problems really are high-class problems compared to the rest of the world.

The direction we're headed is chronic homelessness and hunger, though. If people cannot make mortgage payments; if they cannot pay their doctor bills; if they cannot purchase food; if they cannot afford the price of gasoline to get to work; if their job disappears - so many of us have been affected by corporate greed that it staggers the imagination.

I am unable to pay my October mortgage payment. I can't pay my car insurance, or my property taxes at this moment. I am behind in what I owe Torrance Memorial Hospital, and my dentist. Yet if my Republican aquaintences were to hear of this, I would be considered to be a loser, that I fucked up. One gal told me she's lost a couple $100K in the stock market so she's going to buy more property and go money market. I said, lovely. Want to pay my mortgage?

Humble Pie? What's the nutritional value?

Ruth Hull Chatlien said...

I found this a curious video. I agree totally with the point that it's making. I was just surprised that all the representatives for the consumerist lifestyle were young people flaunting their sexuality. Where were the guys in the suits and the "ladies who lunch" in their SUVs? Where were the bankers and lawyers and stock brokers and realtors and mortgage brokers and politicians? Surely the young hard bodies shown exclusively in this video are not the only spoiled Americans who need to eat humble pie.

And seriously, I wanted to see the world pictures for longer than a flash even if they are disturbing.

I'm sorry. The video really is making a good point, and I appreciate having seen it. Thank you for posting it. I know I'm being excessively critical. But I'm married to a man with a master's degree in film and video, so I can't help but notice how things like this are constructed. It's nearly impossible for me to separate the medium from the message.

Border Explorer said...

Maui, Fran, Missy: yes.

Dusty: Thanks.

Randal: Is Gordon better dead than red?

Chani: That makes soooo much sense. Too much sense to be just "one narrow thought."

Border Explorer said...

Diva, your comments are unfailingly brilliant. I admire you.

I'm really worried about the direction of our country and our economy too. It is the middle and the poor who will suffer. The rich and powerful seem to be able to deflect any difficulties (c.f. Bush & Co.).

I care about your own financial situation. You are in no way a "loser" no sense of the term.

If only the people who put us into this financial crisis were the ones eating humble pie.

Border Explorer said...

Ruth, thanks for your response. Perhaps my enthusiasm set expectations too high. This video simply took someone's daily blog post and put it to music. Another blogger who read and really liked the original post produced the vid a few days later. They weren't trying for an Oscar; they were trying to communicate the point that you mentioned at the start of your comment. Follow the link to M. Yu's original post and you can view all the pictures at your leisure.

But clearly Michael has taught you a lot about film making. All your points were good ones. If I ever do another music video, I want you on my advisory board. LOL. (Seriously, don't watch my amateur attempt!!! LOL)

Missy said...

Here's the thing, (and, I guess this video pretty much makes that point) as bad as it is for us, it's worse for developing nations. That's the easiest way to say it, but it belies the depth of the problem. Right now 80% of the worlds population lives on $10 or less a day. Almost half the world, over three billion people live on $2.50 or less a day.

If it gets worse for us, it's going to get worse for them--it's going to kill them. We're going to see tragedy on an unimaginable scale. If a ship can't get letters of credit dry goods don't move. This is already happening around the world. Shipping is coming to a halt.

God help us.

Carol said...

Thank you for sharing this film.

My mom - who lived through the Depression - thinks that she knows what hard times are like. I am sure that the Depression was very hard, but she still had a roof over her head. Her floor wasn't made of dirt. And she had enough food that she obviously didn't starve. She can't put it together that, at her poorest, she lived better than generations of people have lived in many countries.

And I'm not discounting the hard times that people here are going through here. But we can live on SO much less...

Ruth Hull Chatlien said...

Sometimes I just need to check my editor head at the door. Or read more carefully. Somehow I missed what the genesis of the video was.

Randal Graves said...

The only losers are those who willfully exploit the problems of others for their own gain.

Those, and people who hate Beethoven.