It was interesting listening to Mark Carney on channel 4 news last night talking about Capitalism being the instrument of change in the climate crisis. I understand his point, that it will take huge investment to take us where we need to be.
However as the great Jon Snow was insinuating, hasn’t the blind pursuit of money pushed us to the edge already? Don’t we need to simplify our lives and stop chasing money?
Capitalism in this rougue unchecked form we have now, apart from making a small minority obscenely rich and leaving many more destitute necessarily pitches people against each other. It is competition at its crudest.
Our media shows how we have a tendency to demonise people and blame them when more understanding and respect would be much more helpful. I suspect the competitive ethic has leaked into our information sharing which is as equally destructive as the huge polarity in the distribution of wealth.
I understand the media has helped people to question authority in the past which was very necessary but it now seems out of control. People are continually attacked and the consequence is the creation of an underlying cynicism and anxiety that is extremely divisive. Fears and prejudice are inflamed. People trying to do good things are immediately on the defensive.
The environmental changes we so desperately need requires us to really understand our interdependency on each other and on the natural world. We need to build trust and understanding and that means a more cooperative way of being. We have all been hurt by others but closing up leads to personal misery and isolation as well as having a very negative impact on our communities. Compassion isn’t easy but it is the best way, probably the only way forward. The prophets from all the great religious traditions have always said this.
I’d really love to see changes in the media, in the way people are interviewed and reported on. Less sensationalism and gossip, more compassion, respect and regard for the truth and a quest for better understanding of others would certainly help. People are complicated, they have stories, they are rarely just bad people. We are all a mix of light and dark. It doesn’t help to keep blaming others. When an individual acts in this way it shows a lack of maturity, maybe our culture needs to mature a bit?
The change we need depends on our perceptions. Our perceptions are shaped by what we read and see and think about. The people sharing information have a great responsibility in the years ahead and it would be an inspiration to see people demonstrate some integrity and wisdom in this important area.