This weekend the 'Black Friday/Cyber Monday' madness has taken hold.
In a year where we all paused. Where we all saw the devastating impacts of lockdowns on local businesses. Where we all said we were going to support local. Where panic buying was shamed and our purchasing choices were restricted for the common good. Now... we're being told to 'buy buy buy' because there are 'deals deals deals!'.
Despite our best intentions, this year we've seen the consolidation of power and wealth to the big, multinational juggernauts. Jeff Bezos's wealth is now upwards of $180 billion. The Walton family (of Walmart) are well over $200 billion. This is an obscene and saddening amount of money, especially when there are hundreds of millions of people around the world who don't know where their next meal is coming from, or even have the ability to go to a clean and sanitary toilet each day.
Enter Helena Norberg-Hodge.
Helena is an internationally renowned author, filmmaker, and philosopher, and is the Founder and Director of Local Futures. She tells her story of how she entered Ladakh in Tibet when it was first opened up to outsiders, and how she witnessed first hand its transition from a thriving, self-sufficient, cultural community, to one that felt the impacts of globalisation, commercialisation, and materialism.
She has produced and directed the award winning documentary 'The Economics of Happiness', which further tells the story of the issues of economic globalisation. And she recently hosted the World Localization Day summit, featuring incredible people such as Noam Chomsky, Jane Goodall, Russell Brand, and more, and was officially endorsed by H.H. the Dalai Lama.
In this conversation we talk about her experiences living in and out of Tibet, and seeing the year on year erosion to our globalised world. We talk about the importance of localization and 'Big Picture Activism'. We talk about the distinction between localization and nationalism, especially given this year as we've seen people's nationalistic tendencies come out. We talk about this year and the pockets of people supporting local, but at the same time the consolidation of wealth and power to the big multinationals. And so much more.
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