Globalisation (and Its Discontents) (1)

Australia
November 1, 2011 5:31am CST
I found the following quote from Islamic academic Sardar (1999) to be a most useful definition og globalisation. "Conventionally, the colonisation of the future was known as ‘Westernisation’. Now it goes under the rubric of ‘globalisation’. It may be naïve to equate the former with the latter, but the end product is the same: the process that is transforming the world into the proverbial ‘global village’, rapidly shrinking distances, compressing space and time, is also shaping the world in the image of a single culture and civilisation". My thoughts on this are undergoing a little bit of revision with the rise of China to such prominence in world affairs, as perhaps now the eventual single culture might not, after all, be based on the USA, Capitalist template. But at the moment it is still the American template that runs the process of globalisation, and along with many other critics of the whole process, this makes me most unhappy. The track record is still being created, but the result of globalisation that seems to me to be most disturbing is the gradual descent into third world conditions in many parts of the Western world as a direct result of global Capitalist economics. This occurs primarily through outsourcing labour in Third World Countries at the expense of high unemployment at home, and the removal of tariff barriers that mean our farmers and small manufacturers go to the wall because it has become cheaper to import food and other products form cheap labour countries. Does this bother you? That you can lose your job for no reason other than your boss can get his labour cheaper in Mexico or India, and that you can't buy decent local food any more without some searching? Lash
2 people like this
7 responses
@iuliuxd (4453)
• Romania
1 Nov 11
I think we should be concerned first about the people from India and Mexico because they are the underpaid ones.Basically you will buy cheaper products because the big companies can have slaves working for them in other countries.It has to do a lot with politics because politicians are the ones that allow such things,they steal the Iraq natural resources so that you can have cheaper fuel and they will make tons of money while iraqi people will have big problems.they will steal now Libya resources once they got rid of the "bad dictator" so the western world will always have cheaper products and a higher life standard,not because they deserve that but because since Columbus discovered America the western world had always scammed the poor countries.
• United States
1 Nov 11
"they steal the Iraq natural resources so that you can have cheaper fuel and they will make tons of money while iraqi people will have big problems" Europe gets the majority of the oil, get your facts straight. So I see you are from Romania so I am hoping you refuse to buy any fuel that might be linked to Iraq or Libya...
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• United States
1 Nov 11
Also I don't know about Australia where Grandpa_lash is from but I know fuel prices are a lot more than they were before the Iraq war so there isn't any price cuts for people here.
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@iuliuxd (4453)
• Romania
1 Nov 11
EvanHunter i think my country is taking advantage too,i never tried to tell you that my country is not affected by "globalization " but i don`t think people who have stolen iraqi oil are from Romania,they are mostly from US but that doesn`t matter,they can be from any western country.I just wanted to say that western countries will always have a higher standard of living and they will do anything for that (stealing,murdering,corrupting).For example i say again we will have to buy used F16 planes from US just because some people want to make some money and they found a lot of corrupt politicians in here .Then we will make more debts and probably our economy will collapse like Greece did.It`s not that simple as you think.I think the price for oil is higher than before the war on every country but the question is :How much of the money will go back to the iraqi people and how much will go to some rich western citizens pockets ? I wasn`t accusing australian people,romanian people or even US people because you have no fault ...our only fault is that we don`t accept we are ruled by bad people and we don`t deserve the wealth we have because it`s stolen from others.
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@Fatcat44 (1142)
• United States
2 Nov 11
I believe there is one thing most people are missing, when they are pointing to the west. Most of the large corporations are own by Europeans. The Europeans have purchused most of the companies. So people need to look more towards the Europeans. Also, China, as a government was not able to get their country going. So they went out and partnershipped with these large corporations to come into their country and develop it. Most of the cement plant, power plants, and other infrustruture building facilities are in 50-50 partnership. China does not know how to get these things done, so they have the experts come in and do it for them. This has shifted a lot of the money that used to go into Europe and the US to China and Africa where there is a race between compeditors to get in on the graound floor and reep the growth potential there. I predict in the future, these countries will become like Japan and even Gernamy, where in the 1970 Japan was the cheap labor area, but there are one of the more expensive areas now. Even Germany after WWII was rebuild with the best of technology which help Germany become one of the business powers of the world. Yes, the West are the trumpet blowers of capitazation, but the old monies in Europe are the ones to profit from it.
1 person likes this
• Australia
2 Nov 11
Europe IS the West, along with the US, Australia, and a few others. Lash
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@p1kef1sh (45640)
17 Dec 11
I suggest that you look more carefully at just who does own the major industrial companies. A few are European. A few are American. A rapidly increasing amount are Chinese and Indian with Russia not far behind.
@lawdude (237)
• United States
2 Nov 11
Mr. Lash, your obsevations are on point. I think the lesson is that capitalism is the globe's growth engine and will ultimately raise the living standards of underdeveloped nations at the expense of Western nations such as the U.S. and others with mature, developed economies. It seems an inevitable process. Whether we like it or not, the capitalist system does not guarantee winners or losers; but history indicates that in the long run it's the most efficient and progressive economic system.
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@sharra1 (6342)
• Australia
2 Nov 11
There is no such thing. The only reason they have moved to the underveloped nations is because they are poor and the labour is cheap. In time when your standard of living increases they will panic as to where to go next. Hard as they are running out of cheap labour. It is even getting dearer to use china no matter how much the government suppresses the workers. There is something wrong with a culture who blames a road accident victim for being in the way when they got hit by a car. Clearly it takes a great deal of arrogance and complete lack of respect for human life.
@francesca5 (1344)
1 Nov 11
i am not sure where we are heading. outsourcing has had an interesting effect, as outsourcing call centres, and work that requires certain skills has, i think, started to raise expectations in the countries that have been outsourced to. so i think there is a readjustment going on and western countries aren't quite sure what to do. my own view is that a lot of their economic policies are bonkers, as you can't cut real wages without reducing internal demand, which then impacts on a country's economy. my own view is at some point the excess profits of corporations and the financial sector are going to become a serious issue, and then it will be politically impossible to not make them share some of the pain. i think we have a problem in that the current economic consensus of western governments has been undermined, but the governments are still trying to play the same game, so to speak. i am not completely pessimistic, as we now have democracies, and the internet, and so debate and information sharing is easier, rupert murdoch, for example, may have got quite a lot of what he wanted, but the power of the press is now receding, not growing. i don't know what will happen next but i think the globalisation economic model is going to have to adapt, as every country cannot have falling wages and rely on exports to grow, and as that realisations dawns, a recognition that the corporate sector needs to suffer a bit too, will grow too.
1 person likes this
• Australia
1 Nov 11
I've forgotten which of the Contradictions of Capitalism this is, but I'm pretty sure Marx predicted this as a natural consequence of embracing Capitalism. It's only a matter of time before Topsy grows too big to support her own weight and the whole thing will implode. Your faith in democracy (as it stands) is touching. But I suppose it is still better than the current alternatives. Lash
2 people like this
@EvanHunter (4028)
• United States
1 Nov 11
50+ years ago politicians and corporate leaders would of been in prison for selling us out to communist countries like this. Sadly people don't know enough that it is even wrong for this to be happening. Most point the fingers at each other instead of saying this shouldn't be allowed and putting a stop to it. I am skeptical that things will ever get better. I think now that capitalism has met communism and they have gotten a taste of what total control is they will push for the same here. I often wonder with all these protests going on if we are not being moved to a destiny we don't want, thinking we are getting back to freedoms we had (or thought we did) and actually running to freedoms demise across the globe.
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• Australia
2 Nov 11
Once our leaders became hypnotised by the triplets Economic Rationalisation, Globalisation, and Infinite Growth the writing was on the wall, and the sort of semi-honest politics you hark back to went to the wall. Lash
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@iuliuxd (4453)
• Romania
2 Nov 11
I remember i`ve seen a movie called Future by Design , a dream an old man called Jacque Fresco has about how our world should look like.I`m not sure that is 100% possible but i think we are on a wrong road right now and something must be done...i`m not sure it will be done though since our leaders only care about money,power and profits
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• India
2 Nov 11
Hi grandpa. Globalization for one thing led to GREED, MORE GREED AND FAR MORE GREED. Politicians and super ambitious corporate joined to hit both ends hard to reap overnight fortunes: manage all costs cheap from wherever on the globe and force economies the world over buy high priced stuff. Globalization has led to destruction of forests, farms and natural habitats to sub serve the worst instincts of the expansionists and capitalists. In fact, no one knows who will ultimately benefit from the so called free trade and open economy! I have bookmarked an exhaustive account in an archive titled.'Imperialism and Economic Globalization' which has many revealing article collection about various facets of globalization [read commercialization by proxy colonizing] & its impacts. Happy to share the link: http://www.hartford-hwp.com/archives/25a/index-a.html Hope it works and is useful.
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