Voices Against War

the last tycoon336‘Violence is concerned with power and greed; people seek their own advantage to the detriment of others in the world. The financial people who swindled pensioners out of their pensions showed violence towards these people’

Leslie Hardie, CO, Second World War

So I finished a book I’ve been reading, Voices Against War by Lyn Smith a book based on the testimony of ‘those who participated in protest – from the Great War of 1914-1918 through to….the ongoing conflicts in Iraq in Afghanistan’

So much to think about. It’s all very well thinking you’re against war, but what if a Nazi with a gun came for Helen or my mum, what would you propose to do about the concentration camp?

But that is the theoretical side of things, what about the violence of our daily lives, the violence that we experience every day? The voice of Leslie Hardie above reminds me the violence I commit by merely being human in a very complex word.

For instance, last night I sold a book on Amazon, something which I’ve been doing the last few years. A considerable % of the price I sold it for went to Amazon as it has with the various books, DVD’s and CD’s I’ve sold. In effect I’ve done some work for Amazon.

Yet I also know that Amazon are less than honourable in their tax affairs using tax loopholes to avoid paying corporation tax.

Because of their size and power they are able to gain an unfair advantage over those who can’t afford to move to The Channel Islands yet have to pay their taxes. I know this happens and I know that by selling books on Amazon or buying books on Amazon I am swelling their coffers.

Of course our lives are so complicated these days. Not that lives weren’t always complicated, but now everything is comlicated because we can find out about stuff at breakneck speed with electronic communication.

Everything is so complicated and it has to power to depress you (well me at any rate) because you’ll go mad. Can we go around worrying about how every action has consequences? Perhaps one of those virtues that we need most but rarely talk about is wisdom. Not training, or education, but wisdom, the power to make wise decisions in day to day life. I know I need more of it.

don’t be a l.i.a.r (Low Information to Action Ratio)

(Clearing out some notebooks and scraps of paper…sorry, loads of posts coming all at once, probably in bit and pieces to make it easier to tag and categorise…trying to tidy the study)

Neil Postman talks about people having a low information to action ratio. Me defined I guess.

“The tie between information and action has been severed. Information is now a commodity that can be bought and sold, or used as a form of entertainment, or worn like a garment to enhance one’s status. It comes indiscriminately, directed at no one in particular, disconnected from usefulness; we are glutted with information, drowning in information, have no control over it, don’t know what to do with it.”


Being informed doesn’t make you wise