The problem with blogging for environmental change

This weekend’s Sunday Times – News & Opinion carried a syndicated article in which anti-globalisation doyenne Naomi Klein  dealt my excitement – if not determination – to blog for environmental change a bit of a blow. 

Klein, the critically acclaimed Canadian activist and author of No Logo, makes the following point about blogging as a medium:

As a blogger, you get to stand and shout on your soap box, get the issue off your chest (often to no one in particular) and then get on with your day without changing a thing about the very problem that upset you.

And I fear she may have a valid point.

Having read the anti-globalisation bible and fleetingly met her in a Mike’s Kitchen whilst covering the World Summit on Sustainable Development in 2002, I for one can vouch that she has her heart and head in the right place.

Yet in one fell swoop she hammers both Bono of U2 and, by implication, André of SA Climate Crisis’ attempts to spread eco-friendly thinking and ideas as futile.

 

If anything, she reckons, it does the cause as a whole a disservice by bringing about “change-inertia” and trivialising or “Bono-ising” the topic.

 

In a previous entry I wrote about change and ways of mobilising people through the dissemination eco-conscious thinking.

And if Klein is right, we’re not nearly done thinking about it either.

 

Should we organise a “gorilla mobbing” in Canal Walk, or go spray-paint the Minstry of Minerals and Energy’s offices? Should we drive around and deflate the tyres of every stationary Hummer we can find and skull-paint their windshields?

 

Because I will do it. Don’t tempt me.

 

What can you DO?

 

Action Point 1

On a more serious note though, please do let me know how we can take blogging and other forms of social media from mere consciousness into engaged action; this is important, so feel free to comment away.

 

Today being Blog Action Day, I couldn’t think of a more appropriate day to broach this topic.

 

Action Point 2
Go buy and read No Logo, and get hold of The Shock Doctrine, Naomi Klein’s new book on how Western Politicians persistently screw their voter bases – AND the environment – during times of disaster and crisis.

If nothing else, you can rest assured that the money won’t be funding a US presidential campaign in the near future.

 

This is what to look out for:

 

 

Action Point 3
Subscribe to this blog via the RSS feed and encourage your thinking associates to do the same.

Do it, do it now!

 

 Action Point 4

If you’re blogging today, make sure it’s about something urgent and environmental. Let’s make this one count in the blogosphere!
 

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6 Responses

  1. Nice blog. Only it’s “fell swoop”, not “foul swoop”, from Shakespeare and Old French ‘fel’, evil.

  2. Thanks sweetheart 🙂

  3. Buy the book? That kills a tree doesn’t it?

  4. It kills loads of trees – but certain ideas are worth spreading. Thing is – it’s not exactly Marianne Keys level reading, and the damage to trees, relative to the positive changes and actions those books will facilitate, should be minimal.

    Remember: You read it and one tree dies, but you’ll be talking about what you’ve read for a lifetime.

    Not a bad return on investment, in my mind.
    Shall we then reset the ballpark and say: For every book you buy – new or secondhand – you need to plant at least one tree?

    That would make your reading a carbon-neutral activity:).

  5. re: the M Keys reference – it won’t burn trees like a popular paperback bestseller.

  6. and that’s KEYES, as it turns out – roll on weekend!

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