Archive for December, 2009

Domineer of Tomorrow

Posted in Written Diarrhea on 5 December, 2009 by Troy

I’ve looking around lately at the world around me, the people in power, the companies that dominate their respected market, the organizations that govern and how they seem so antiquated in this day and age.  They all seem to be relics of the past, left over from a post-cold war world.  I look at it all and wonder who it is that will dominate us in years to come.  The current world situation seems on the brink of waiting for someone to come along, grab the bull by the horns, lead innovation and take us into a new direction.

NATO is showing its age and faults in Afghanistan and the post-cold war world.  The UN has been looking useless the last 15 years.  The world climate conference starts in the next couple days and governments seemed tied and useless to make a decision on what to do or come up with a consensus as to what to do.

The corporations that are the leaders in their respected market places were all started and made by self-made people that started off as small businesses and built corporate empires around them.  They took huge amounts of risks and gambles.  Many failed and a very few came out on top as true testaments to capitalism and the American way.  Now those same corporations are so focused with turning over as much profit as possible, they refuse to make and try those same innovations and risks that brought them to power in the first place.  And the irony is, so many of the people who would normally have become the self-made starters now work for those same corporations, potentially never going out to make their innovation. 

I look at the companies, organizations and alliances that dominate the world today and I don’t see one of them being the in same position in 20-30 years time.  It’ll be interesting to see what company, alliance or person comes along with that new invention or ideology and dominates the world of tomorrow.

Organic Fair Trade

Posted in Written Diarrhea on 5 December, 2009 by Troy

I was walking down Commercial Drive today, enjoying the lack of rain and I suddenly became aware of the number of coffee shops, cafes, health food stores and restaurants all advertising that not only did they serve coffee but Organic Fair Trade coffee.  I haven’t been ignorant to the number of places advertising and boasting the certifications of their coffee but for some reason at that moment it seemed so much more prevalent and ridiculous.  Now by no means am I against, look down upon or dislike the organic or fair trade movements, in fact I fully support them.  What what really struck me on the head when I looked around at all the FTO advertising was how people will make such a big issue of it when it comes to coffee but remain ignorant and uncaring when it comes to food.   They’re willing to pay more for the coffee too but still expect rock bottom prices when it comes to food.

I’ve been reading a lot of food related non-fiction lately; Omnivore’s Dilemma, In Defense of Food and recently Fast Food Nation.  All are great books that have for me, shedded a light on a group of people who have been forgotten by the whole Fair Trade movement; the North American farmer.  In the race to make the world a better place for people half way around the world, we’ve forgotten about people in our own backyards.  We’ve forgotten to ask if they’re getting fair trade for their products.  From what I’m reading the answer is no and they seem to be getting taken advantage of as much as coffee farmers and other poor farmers in developing countries. 

Even the whole local foods movement, seems to be more geared towards reducing the environmental impact and reduction of greenhouse gases, the potential health benefits of eating fresher foods, and as alternative to the industrial food complex.  From my experience of working on farms in Australia, it’s the small farmer that needs a lot of help too.  Unless they’re going industrial, farming in general seems like a wasted venture and the only ones that seem to be making a go at it are the ones going after a niche market.

Support your local farmer.