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Saturday, July 13, 2013

Response To Comments On "Supertemp vs. day laborer, brands & the broken circle of trust"

There definitely is an issue regarding "truth" here. Whose version of reality, is reality? My husband says to me -- you see the world through the lens of brand, but where is the brand relevance here? I buy a pair of jeans, they are cool, what does the worker have to do with it? If you want to talk about Bangladesh then do so, but explain it. (This I am planning to do, over time, more in the next blog on "invisibility" and the brand system.)

So generally I am trying to explain how the worker's personal truth coexists with the consumer's personal truth (remembering that the same person is both worker and consumer). Your truth, my truth, objective truth - a huge and growing gap between the haves and have nothings.

I am as bothered as you about those articles on working conditions in the U.S. I did not know either about these conditions, or maybe I did not want to think about it. Good old Amazon right? And everybody else. I too thought those days were over.

That will be part of the blog referenced above.

Back to the point about people in law enforcement and the truth. And people who get into situations where they mess up. They think about will I get caught, they think about how to dissemble and represent things to minimize trouble, they run from the truth.

There is something called the truth though. What bothers me personally about our culture is that we seem to have lost our grasp on the concept of truth altogether. Instead we are preoccupied with winning.

And this gets back to politics right? If we are honest we can admit that no party or ideology has all the answers. But if we are political we try very hard to fit the facts into the narrative.

Edward Snowden, George Zimmerman, gun control, healthcare reform, immigration reform, unemployment, and other issues become incendiary because they are argued from the perspective of ideology. If we could go back and create some safe space for mutual dialogue and rational, data-driven analysis, we could arrive at solutions that really work.

I am a researcher of brand, but this is really a problem that goes way beyond it. Where has our capacity for reflection gone? Why can we not speak our minds without fear? What has happened to rousing dialogue minus the accusations?

I happen to believe that answers come from people at the grassroots level working independently and in small groups. I inherently distrust big bureaucracies to get stuff done effectively. And this is precisely because once you create a monstrous system, it perpetuates itself and the people inside it stop thinking and stop taking responsibility for its outcomes.

One of which is that we have people sleeping on the street, in front of the White House, where just a few miles away other people are sleeping in multi million dollar homes and driving Porsches. That is a fact and not an interpretation.

If each of us stopped for even five seconds to think about how disgraceful that is, what would we do differently?

* All opinions my own.

** See:
http://www.businessinsider.com/working-conditions-at-an-amazon-warehouse-2013-2