Friday, May 5, 2017

Final Readings

The E reserve reading "Conserving Communities" is by far my favorite reading so far. It first focuses on the decline of farming due to the high demand and mechanization of farming. Farming has decreased over the last century in the US because we perceive that industry is better and that we should be growing houses and businesses instead of food. Corporations have left massive defects in our natural world because they view the earth as a commodity and the resources are viewed as something that is for the taking. The reading talks about how farmers when they are small scale have a minimal effect on long term changes to the natural environment, however when you start to replace people with machines things tend to become more drastic and permanent. What I really like about this reading is that it included the effects of coal mining and logging, these are processes that have had an major impact on the earth. Another interesting part about this was about how people are being less recognized for their character and more about what a computer has to say about them. If a computer says that you do not make enough for a house regardless of if you can pay it or not, you are denied a loan. I never really thought about how people were dehumanized an focused more as a statistic than a person. Our rural communities and culture are endanger of being wiped out.

The second E reserve global to local was another reading that I enjoyed because it shed a light on the doom and gloom of globalization. The reading says hey, yeah this is a thing but you as a human being and a part of the collective of human beings can make a difference in globalization even though you are a small part. The reading gives suggestions about how to help mold globalization and that is by being informed about what you are buying as a consumer. Globalization is based pretty heavily on consumers, if you decide (with others) that you do not want to support a treacherous company, then don't, there are always opportunities to get your products else where. The else where to get your products is locally according to the reading, you can have a positive effect by buying your products as locally as you possibly can, whether it be produce or skin care. My town has a shop that sells locally made soaps, skin care, and luxury bath stuff. The article also says that you can support free trade which gives farmers and people who produce products in developing nations a better opportunity to support themselves. I really appreciated this article because there are so many ways you can impact globalization, the bite may be small but it is still there.

The chapter 76 reading was interesting because it put out there that there is a struggle between big corporations and democracy. In all the readings there was an importance put upon politics and how that is the key factor in fighting back at globalization. If we fought back and said no these companies are not people and no they cannot sue governments for taking into consideration the effects on the citizens we would be much better off. I really liked how the author talked about the two different worlds, there is the big corporate and the citizen. The corporate world is one of privilege and  taking what you want without really thinking about the consequences. The citizen world is one where the problems and chaos are clearly seen and an issue. By participating in democracy and for people being able to make their own decisions and make their own informed choices, there could be a better form of globalization.

Final Redaing

This semester we learned the good, the bad, and the ugly effects of globalization and how it is involved in our everyday lives. Reading the final chapter I feel the author was trying to reach out to the readers letting them know what the problems are in each sector of globalization. The one that I feel was most intriguing to me was on page 585 section C where the author elaborate on how human activity (I.E. Fossil fuel combustion) are making it harder for children who are living in poverty to survive. Third world countries are prone to natural disaster leaving these people that are already poor in more danger and with the human activity that is happening from these countries it is increasing the number of natural disaster which not only affect the poor but it affects the middle class as well. It states during the 1990's due to natural disasters there was an economic loss of $608 million and over 2 billion people affected. My argument in this is how corporations most likely know these numbers and refuse to step in and help the people they have injured. Laws should be implemented when things like this happen but all corporations care about is the money and not the consumers or the people it affects.

In the e-reserves Global to Local was my favorite out of the two. It gives you multiple ideas on how to help change the market for the better of your community and the world you live in. It give examples on how to invest, on union workers, urban farms, knowing what you're consuming, and more. I watched a this article reminds me of a portion of the documentary 13th. We think a lot about companies getting their labor overseas in sweatshops but it is happening in our own country too. Prison labor is just as bad as sweatshops and thing that you wear everyday were made from prisoners for $2 a day until the companies like Victoria's Secret and JC Penny got shed in the light. I try to watch what I buy and where I shop to make sure I'm not supporting a bad cause at my best.  In Philadelphia we also have what we call "Urban Farms" where people farm in a vacant lot to give fresh food at a low price to the people in the community. A lot of things that were suggested in this article I try my best to do in my everyday life but it is hard especially growing up in the millennial generation.

The final e-reserve was how organizations are willing to fund the larger farm companies rather than the smaller ones. Banks rather give loans off of credit reports rather than the person itself. This happens a lot with businesses in the nation. The hardest thing in America to get is most likely a business loan to start your own organization. The thing I liked in this e-reserve was the multiple key point that it provides and questions you should ask about an organization before supporting it. A big thing that the current administration wants to do right now is get rid of NAFTA which will be a big hit to these global markets so maybe in the future local might be the only option even though NAFTA is a bill worth keeping. It will be interesting to see how the current administration will effect globalization over the next 4 years in office.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Final Readings

Throughout the semester we learned what globalization is and how it effects the world as a concept and as a physical manifestation. The course revolved around the different views of globalization since we have read articles and segments of positive and negative critiques. By now most of us have a clear grasp on what globalization is and what it has done to world currently.

We have read many articles on the globalization and how people perceive its affects, in the last chapter we see a negative view of the contribution organizations like the IMF and WTO. Refreshingly we also see the ways to combat the problems of separations that has been produced by these organizations. They propose ways to fix the different segments of the issues that arise from the appearance of globalization. Most of the solutions initially proclaimed the efforts of giving and respecting the communities with fair opportunities, and also advocating for social movements. We also see the pattern of handling the problems head on instead of chipping away at them which will lead them to a faster progress in handling the problems of globalization.

The E-reserves shows us how we can help the livelihood of local buying alive. They introduce that the best way to go against globalization is to do the opposite of what it globalization actually is. By buying and supporting local stores or products, citizens know that their money isn't going into the large pocket of corporations but in the pockets of local companies who have to support themselves as they fight against large corporations. Another way was to pay attention to labels since they give us information on where the product came from and where the money is going to.

The course was confusing because of the lack of information I had on globalization, but as we progressed on globalization turned out to be even more complex then I thought. Globalization is seen as good or bad depending on what topic is being discussed and who you are speaking to. As the negative effects of globalization vary in forms whether its inequality, appropriations, or injustice there are ways to fix them just how there are ways to appreciate the good that comes from globalization. Globalization is a human concept of spreading traditions, ideas, products, and work around the world and as it is only a concept of sharing the complications that come with it, are due to humans placing an importance of governance which is where I believe the key problem resides.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Final Readings

Wrapping up the readings is a final chapter looking at the future of globalization. Globalization has always been at the front ground of our discussions plus with the class name being "Spaces of Globalization" it is easy to see the influence of globalization. In this class globalization has been painted in both a good and bad light but now going forward in the future we can look at the negative things about globalization and improve upon them in the future.

The author of the last sections points a finger at organizations like the IMF and WTO on major world issues such as the global division between the rich and the poor. The author pushes for more of the individualization of both the people and the societies they live in and advocates for more of a local scene where goods and services are traded on a small scale oppose to a larger global scale.

The E-Reserves preach a message of power to the people with an emphasis on buying from the local markets. There is a drive to get the product power back to the common person with the author stating that we should buy as many local goods as we can and if we have to shop in the global market than we should look for labels such as fair trade so we know that the money will go back into that global economy as well. This drive also strays us away from relying on unmoral corporations to make products for us that we don't even know where they are coming from giving power back to the consumer.

In conclusion the concept of globalization wasn't inherently good or evil, globalization was an experiment to see if the human race was ready to live as a united world where we all openly traded with one another. However in this experiment some countries made it out on top with the other countries making the products for these winner countries. However in some ways it did work out with ideas and concepts being traded around the world but for the most part the first world countries got the lion's share of globalization with not enough wealth to spread around the whole world. Globalization was an interesting concept to experiment with but moving forward in the future there are a lot of things we have to change before we are ready to fully live in a united world where everyone reaps the benefits of the market at hand.

Final Readings

This past semester globalization has been the center of every class discussion in some way, shape, or form. We have learned not only the benefits of globalization but the negative aspects of it as well, ranging from exploiting the earth to exploiting human beings. These final readings discuss how we can deal with globalization in an efficient way as well as how we can begin to "conserve communities" by supporting our local businesses and not give in to the corporate agenda.

There are many alternative ways that we can fix globalization, and when i say fix, I mean ways we can make globalization fit for all humans needs without causing environmental destruction or violations of basic human rights. Positive changes take time and effort from collective action, however we all possess the power individually to make a change no matter how big or small. After all, it is each of our individual efforts that make a collective effort. The "Global to Local" article discusses how big corporations want us to believe that we individually cannot make a difference, and they do a very good job at convincing the masses that. But we do have the power, even if its simply just buying from your local farmers or strictly purchasing fair trade goods, there are no efforts that are too small anymore.

A market place can only operate efficiently if the consumers know the details about their products, and this information is becoming more widely available every single day. Many organizations are now providing labeling with "green" or "environmentally friendly" labeling as well as "blue" or "worker friendly" labeling. Efforts like this bring more awareness to the fact that there are so many products in the market place that contribute to horrible destruction to our environment as well as exploiting the lives of millions of workers who work for unlivable wages and work in extremely unsafe conditions. "Global to Local" provides us with many difference examples of just what we can do to make a difference such as buying organic food, supporting fair trade, and joining organizations that are working for social justice, human rights, and environmental sustainability.

Conserving communities touches on the subject of the disappearing farms from America. This has become a large and complex problem in our country as its not just dealing with the loss of millions of jobs, but it has created its own set of problems like destroying farm communities and harming our environment due to the explosion in huge industrial factory farms. Local businesses generate more money for their communities compared to large industrial farms which do virtually nothing for their communities since its not just where the industrial farm is located that is receiving its products. Supporting local businesses and local farmers will not only benefit the "little guy" but in turn will help your own community grow and thrive.

Each and every one of us has the power to make the world a better place, no matter how bad corporations want us to believe we are simply consumers, we are so much more than that. Without a demand for a product, there will simply be no spot in the marketplace for it, and that is such an important thing to understand when it comes to globalization. It is the people that make globalization what it is because we are the majority, we are the ones getting catered to therefore we should be the ones making the rules, not the opposite. There are so many negative aspects of globalization that we have the power and resources to change, but it's up to each individual person to want this change, without it no progression can ever be done to turn around the devastation globalization has caused.

Final Readings

This weeks readings looked at the future of globalization and what can be done. Throughout the semester, we have slowly built up to this final thought or conclusion on the topic. We have come to look at many different aspects of globalization; the good, the bad, the ugly, and everything in between. However, we have come to discover that globalization does not necessarily only lead to negative outcomes. We have seen the many different positive aspects it has brought throughout the world, and the outcome in general does seem great.

The author of the final chapter seemed rather upset with a few institutions (mainly the IMF and WTO).  The blame was put on them, pushing the idea that globalization is the reason the world has many of its problems, why there is such a divide between the rich and poor, and why that divide is growing instead of shrinking. The author puts emphasis on achievable and constructive goals, and gives us 10 governing principles to create more sustainable societies. These principles would help remove the likes of the IMF, World Bank, and WTO and would better serve the needs of a global economy. The Ten principles are: New democracy, Subsidiarity, Ecological sustainability, Common heritage, Human rights, Jobs/livelihood/employment, Food security and food safety, Equity, Diversity, and Precautionary principle. Each idea has a detailed proposal to essentially limit the power corporations have on the world and better protect us as citizens.

In Conserving Communities, Wendell Berry writes about the destruction of the farming class within America. He writes about how as the 20th century progressed, the farming class shrank more and more as small local farms were replaced in the name of a large scale agricultural business model that created factory-like farms. This destruction creates a whole boatload of issues that is not even the beginning of the problem though. What is evident is that globalization has always taken precedent over the people. Money is the greater incentive to big businesses and corporations who prefer profit over people. They do not realize that for many farmers these were family businesses, and they simply destroyed them without blinking an eye. Berry asks us to look more towards the small communities instead of the big corporations and the massive profits. It is within these communities we will see more of an impact and a positive view from the community itself. At the same time, Berry seems to ramble at times and lose the plot. While referring to rural life gives a view of a farmers life, in my own opinion it is unrelated to the larger message he is trying to give us.

Global to Local looks at the many alternative ways to economic globalization. They describe what many others are doing around the world in order to create a better global economy and a better planet. Cavanagh points out that while collective action influences a positive outcome, we too can do things on a smaller level in order to achieve change. He looks at what we can do as consumers; joining a CSA to promote local farms, supporting fair trade as ways we can help. These are both great steps but are big commitments too. With a CSA you are fronting money to a farm with no idea what the outcome may be. You could not get all that you put in for and that may rub some the wrong way. Supporting Fair Trade obviously eliminates the middlemen from the process putting money in the pocket of the various cooperatives. However, this too is difficult as most people don't look at whether or not the coffee they buy is with a "Fair Trade" group. Cavanagh looks at other steps, but the underlying idea is that it is on us to do the right thing. We hold the power, not the corporations. If we unite together we can make a change in the world for the better, we just have to be smart with where we spend and save our money.

We possess the power to make a change. Stopping globalization would not be the answer to all our problems, but dealing with it in the right ways, taking the correct measures, and handling situations intelligently will allow us to see progress in the right direction. At this moment I think we are at the perfect place to start changing the world. We are seeing a global population unite in many ways that were never thought of as possible. We have the ability to be interconnected around the globe with the touch of a button, and that is our power. Together we have the ability to make a change for the better, whether that be environmentally, agriculturally, physically, or societally. We have the power to change the world...but how will we use it?

readings 10

As we've seen this semester, contemporary globalization permeates nearly every aspect of day to day life - the products we purchase, the food we consume, labor practices, politics, environment, culture and more. We've also learned that this doesn't necessarily have to be a bad thing. However, currently the dominant force in globalization is neoliberalism, a policy that values the dissemination of trade borders between nations over the protection of individual communities. The compulsory propagation of free trade leads to negative ramifications for marginalized groups across the world - factory workers including small children exploited for the production of consumer goods, villages subjected to the disposal of toxic byproducts of the industrial process, indigenous peoples pried away from their lands and resources by corporations redefining ownership, basically anyone or anything without a voice in the global corporate capitalist system.

The International Forum on Globalization, a transnational gathering in the name of alternative globalization, provides a rather extensive and depressing account of these issues, and identifies corporate executives as the sole beneficiaries of the system responsible. However, the Forum also posits that this is not the way things have to be. They've created a list of 10 guiding principles for constructive counterhegemonic globalization, including food security, environmental sustainability, diversity and heritage. Similar global organizations and activist groups are increasingly recognizing areas in need of change in order to make another, better, globalized world possible.

One example of the destructive consequences of neoliberalism is the deliberate disintegration of rural farming communities to pave the way for major agribusiness and factory farms. There is no excuse for the decimation of local production facilities in the name of foreign trade - it raises "ecological, social, and cultural" issues. The only reason to destroy local business is because it will help a larger enterprise to turn a profit. However, local business has been shown to contribute more to the economy of a community as the majority of capital earned will end up back within the community as opposed to the pockets of a corporate executive. If we want to preserve not only the benefits of community business but local ways of life, we should always question the motives of large industry and strive to support small-scale enterprise as much as possible. The local food movement, for example, is becoming an increasingly common way to contribute to local economy.

Altering the patterns of decisions made at the local level is the most significant way an individual can contribute to change on a global scale. Although consumerism is difficult to avoid, by making informed purchases (researching manufacturing processes, labor practices, seeking out fair trade products etc.) we can reduce the negative impacts of global free trade. After all, if there is no demand for unethically produced goods there will be no supply. This is just one area in which effective decision-making has the potential to change public policy. In addition to our consumption, we must consider our work, our investments, and our civic duties on a local, national, and global scale - for example, joining a worker co-op, or donating to global charity. It is also key to stay informed, consistently educating oneself on topics such as the practices of global organizations such as the IMF and WTO.

The prioritization of human and environmental well-being above corporate agenda is the most important consideration in ensuring higher quality of life across the world. This does not necessarily require a global dismantling of capitalist and corporate systems - human well-being has an economic component that must be fulfilled. I think the "triple bottom line" best describes where global priorities should lie: people, planet, profits.

Final Post

This weeks readings have been focused on the way to turn back, in a sense, to a more local and decentralized world. The authors from both the e-reserves, literally outline and ideology as well as steps to take for this to happen. The chapter in the book is a wide view of globalization and what are the possible paths to take to become a more local and decentralized economy. The authors outlines well the ideology on this method, which includes ecological, and human responsibility. 

The E-reserves readings were the most interesting to me, Wendell Berry, outline the basic values that person that want to change the global culture needs to strive for. For the most part, Berry focuses on the economics to help the local economies and the way that local organizations should follow. I was no able to figure out the year that this reading was published, but the author is arguing that this change is going to be gradual and it will required a lot of time to accomplish. I believe that this change is going to be in a more rapid past, if our political atmosphere is any indication of this. I believe that governments are starting to realize of the amount of power that they are losing to globalization. This is more apparent to me after the video of  NAFTA that we saw in class, and how a single chapter on the treaty is costing the involved governments billions of dollars in payout, because companies are affected by legislature of that government. In a different subject, I do like how this author pointed out that food in the gateway for this change, specially restaurants, because they are small and they required little cost to them, in comparison to big business and corporations. This hits a point with me, because I work in a produce store that sells to individuals as well as wholesale, and we see that they are now more business opening up and competing with huge multi national food corporations. Even thought it is apparent that they are able to compete, they still buy food that is imported from all over the world. So, while it seems that local businesses are able to compete with them, they are also having small impact when it comes to tackling globalization, but its small steps, and most of the money stays in the community.

The second E-reserve, Global to Local, is my favorite reading of the three. In this article, the author gives examples and how to help with the fight from many perspectives. It is interesting, because there is something that everybody can do, regardless of the position, age and monetary power. In a way, this article gives the reader, me, the encouragement and the position to tackle the bad aspects of globalization. It is empowering and a call to action. The reason why I found it to be such a good piece, is because throughout the semester, company research, and live event, I get the feeling of pending doom. I understand that globalization is progress, it is hard to imagine that the mom and pop electronic shop down the street coming out with the next iPhone, or Tesla car, but there are definitely negatives to it, like workers, and environment. this gives us a change to make this companies take a second look at they way they operate and how they can make changes to become more sustainable. I believe that there has to be a middle ground for this, one where globalization helps with development, and local keeps it accountable. I do not want to see a homogenized world, because, in Dr. Schnells' words, the world would become a boring place without diversity.

Final Post

In this weeks readings, we looked at what can be done in the future for globalization. Throughout the whole semester we looked at the effects that globalization had on our world, for better or worse. In these readings, it looks for a bright future in how globalization can be handled.

Some feel that globalization is a cause for a lot of the worlds problems, which was a message I picked up in the final chapter of the book. The author pointed fingers at institutions like the IMF and WTO for causing the split between the  rich and poor, as well as the increasing gap of the rich and poor. With this, the author feels that there should be a push for people not being part of the global economy, and if they are to not have the institutions gone. This mindset has also been a part of the new way people are thinking of their communities: the local community, rather than the global community. The authors of both the E-Reserve readings have set up ways for the reader to get away from the global place and support the local community. They give examples of what to do when buying in stores, like buying local and supporting the local businesses, much like last weeks readings looking at the localization movement.

My opinion of these readings, as well as the whole semester, is that globalization has been a worldwide experiment to see if a world connected and working together is possible. In some ways, it has worked: people are trading ideas and products worldwide, causing cultures to be exposed to new things at a fairly rapid pace. However, it has caused problems for other countries, to the point where institutions like the WTO control a country to the point of no return. I do believe if we want to have a working, global world, we have to change a lot before we become a truly globalized world.

Monday, May 1, 2017

readings 9

In these readings the topic of food was covered and it focused on where it comes from. In the food trap reading local food is compared to a local trap. The reading tries to state that local food is not really all that great and kind of tried to make it sound like it was a gimmick. They tried to say that local food is not a fresh as grocery store food because it is not able to be shipped and as fast as food that comes from other places like Giant. My biggest problem with this is that they seem to leave out that food that comes from a grocery store is sprayed with chemicals to ripen and to keep the food from going bad ( I have 8 month old apples that look the same as when I bought them). Your local food perishes like it is supposed to because there are no chemicals being dumped on them to keep them ripe. The reading also tries to say that local farming can be as unsustainable as commercial farming which is entirely wrong, yes some places can use intensive farming but they actually have a choice unlike commercial farming. Also with local farming there is no poor country being taken advantage of by big name companies, you buy from the farmer and then the farmer gets the money for his work. I really did not like this article because they are ignoring arguments and facts.

The second reading talks about food miles and where the food comes from that we eat. Food miles have actually became a topic of debate and people are more aware so some try to eat local. The term local in itself is very subjective and means very different things in certain contexts. my favorite part of the reading is that the author actually included both sides of the arguments and why people are for and against local food and the term food mile and how it has been over simplified. There were also interviews constructed to see why people liked going to CSA's instead of grocery stores, the local trap did not do this and I feel like the local traps's arguments were crap. This was constructed far better and included multiple dimensions of the topic not just a one sided view.

The Piracy by Patent talks about the Neem tree and how a company took the tree from the locals and patented how parts of the tree were used. By doing this they took away not only part of the culture but also part of the peoples way to survive. The Neem tree has many uses and many of them are medicinal and they were used by indigenous people for hundreds of years, but then a company decided that they wanted to take over the rights to this tree. In instances like this the companies take away the right of people to use something natural. Monsanto takes away the right for farmers to replant their seeds so they continuously have to buy new ones, as the article mentions these companies take away from the people to sell things back to them at a price they cannot afford. I am super annoyed that U.S companies can takes something from countries that the U.S has no jurisdiction in and then says we will take you to court if you do. First of all the U.S does not own these countries so they cannot tell them what to and not to do, and second why do big countries think they can bully and take the lunch money away from the little countries. The U.S has no jurisdiction and there is no official global government, so this is extremely annoying (trying to use nice words). This article made me mad, not because of how it was written but because of what other countries are doing to the smaller ones. Many companies are taking away medicine that is needed and making it so people can't afford it, this causes people to die. The companies will let people die before they will lose a tiny bit of profit and this is what irritates me so much.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Readings 9

This weeks readings revolved around the food industry. Food is a global trading market worth billions. These article displayed the good, the bad, and the ugly of what happens in the food industry and is the food we are even eating safe?

When reading the Food Miles article the first statement it makes is how the average amount of miles food travels is 1,500 before it is served to you. Being that it is a major thing that was brought to the light, the idea of local eating came about. To some it is more healthier and they believe they are helping their local farmers. The article also states how not all their statistics are 100% because the The U.S. Commodity Flow Survey ignores import/export data leaving out big corps. like Walmart who started purchasing directly from a supplier. Another argument is how the food  has so many chemicals in it. Chemicals to make it grow faster, chemicals from being transported, chemicals from the air it grows in. Locally grown food also hold these chemicals trying to compete, they add hormones to the food they grow to faster get it to the markets they sell it to. The Born and Purcell article argues that localized food may not be "fresher" due to the amount of resources they don't have compared to larger food distributers. The larger coorpertions can afford to keep the produce fresh as it is being transported because they can afford to keep the food refrigerated and rapid shipping methods.

In my opinion from these article it seems like no matter what you eat there is a downside whether it is large scale or local. Local eating is a good cause for your community in a sense because you are allowing your local farmers to obtain funds for the food they produce. Large scale may be the better choice health wise. Both of these food go through a lot before they are served and these articles are a real eye opener.

readings 9

Everyone has to eat. Thanks to globalization and technology, our choices - what foods we eat and where we get them from - are nearly unlimited. The consequences of these developments, however, can be both positive and negative. For example, the environmental ramifications of transporting food over long distances, mysterious food origins, artificially-grown produce, the disappearance of local cultural food traditions and ways of life - these concerns have led people to develop campaigns such as the local food movement.

The aim of local food is not necessarily to reduce the number of miles the food in one's diet has traveled, as this figure is too multifaceted to calculate and not inherently representative of any global impact. Motivations for participating in "locavore" are diverse, few of them having to do with literally minimizing or quantifying the distance their food has traveled. Some participants want to support local farmers and farming practices; others are most concerned about reducing emissions. Many proponents of local food express a desire simply to know where their food comes from. Because of globalization there is a certain mystery involved with food that comes from the grocery store - was your lettuce grown in the ground with pesticides, near a waste dump, or in the truck on the way to the store? Could your "organic" food have been picked using slave labor in a third-world country, or perhaps slaughtered in a factory farm? People want to know not only what they're eating but what practices they're enabling with their money. Community-supported agriculture is popular in the local food sphere because it allows people to directly participate in the production of their food and support local agriculture, physically as well as financially. Critics of the local food movement often cite the fallacy of the concept of "food miles," ignoring the complexity of the movement's actual goals.

There are, however, merits to food production and distribution on a global scale. The "local trap" refers to the misguided idea that local is always inherently more nutritious or better for the environment - this is not always the case. For example, produce grown in a hothouse locally is not necessarily better and actually produces more emissions than produce grown naturally and shipped from overseas. There are also economic benefits within the global food market. People often equate the globalization of food with the capitalization of food, and assume the appropriate reactionary measure is localization. However, globalization actually makes food more readily available to lower-income consumers, as well as stimulating the economies of third-world nations whose primary income is agriculture. Additionally, the technologies we use to produce and preserve food in a global market can, in fact, result in fresher, more nutritious food than crops grown completely naturally - and in higher quantities, ensuring that a greater percentage of the population is fed. Finally, while local food culture is important, it is not the only one that has to matter. Activists such as those within the slow food movement support the globalization of international foods and food traditions in order to protect overseas farmers' sustenance and way of life from destruction or simply fading into obscurity.

Yet globalization, particularly neoliberal globalization, can be the reason for the destruction of these traditions in the first place. In the case of the Indian neem tree, natives were found to be legally violating copyright law by using their own plants, as global organizations demanded that southern nations adhere to northern nations' patent law. The indigenous people have a long history with the plant and consider it a cure-all for various ailments - denying them access to something so fundamental to their culture is an abuse of the power of the global free market. The globalization of food is not always an issue, but the capitalization of food typically is.

Localization and globalization are not mutually exclusive. Not only do both camps have their place, they are both necessary to increase the well-being of the individual and the environment. The local food movement helps small farmers to stay on their land, and increases public knowledge about where food comes from. The global food movement has the potential to provide more people with better food at lower costs. The potential of both measures is maximized when they are used to the benefit of the greater population rather than the benefit of corporations alone.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Readings 9

In this weeks e-reserve readings we learned a little bit about patents, food production, and just how they both affect us and the world around us. Patents have always been something that have fascinated me, but certainly not in a good way. It never made much sense to me that people, specifically very powerful corporations, have the ability to "patent" something that is naturally produced from the earth. While many people may not be aware of this, most pharmaceutical drugs are derived from plants in the rainforest, plants that indigenous communities have been using for thousands of years for medicinal purposes. But using these plants for medicinal purposes isn't enough for these companies, so they try to patent them. To indigenous people, this makes no sense because these communities never try to "own" things that come from nature, they belong to us all. This is where using natural resources from another country becomes a problem, when it becomes more of an exploitation situation rather than one that is trying to benefit people. That is exactly what we see with the Neem tree in India. The indigenous populations of India were the ones to discover all of the medicinal properties of the Neem tree, yet seem to get none of the credit for it. Like the article mentioned, the West ignored the Neem tree and other eastern medicinal practices for a long time, but when people started becoming a little more health conscious, they realized it was worth studying. And yet again, using the Indian cure-all tree to make products for westerners was not enough, they had to patent it. This caused much uproar and rightfully so, no human being or corporation should have the rights to anything that occurs in nature. It's not right and I firmly believe there should never be ownership when it comes to our natural resources.

The next article titled, "Food miles, etc" had me a little bit worried when I first started reading. This being that I have knowledge on just how much the transportation sector affects greenhouse gas emissions, and it's a lot less than most people would think. The entire world's transportation sector, meaning every car, train, plane, etc, on the planet only accounts for 13% of the worlds greenhouse gas emissions compared to the whopping 51% that is produced from animal agriculture alone. So I had to call bullsh*t on the whole "eating locally to reduce your emissions" spiel. However, as I started reading more I noticed they actually did mention a vegan diet which I can't lie, made me feel quite warm and fuzzy on the inside. They argued that changing less than one day per week of a diet including animal products like beef and dairy to a vegan diet would bring about the same reduction in greenhouse gas emissions as an entirely local, zero-food-mile diet (2008) (see also McWilliams 2009). This is completely true! If you're truly concerned about the "food miles" then a vegan diet is the perfect fit for you. Not only is it the most environmentally conscious diet, but it's also the healthiest one.

The one reason why I do agree that buying local food is important is for the health aspect of it. Food coming from thousands of miles away, not having enough time to grow and ripen the way nature intended is just all around unhealthy, especially when it's not even in season. I feel as if people in the west or more developed countries in general have just gotten so used to having whatever fruit or vegetable they want right at their disposal that they have forgotten just what makes fruits and vegetables healthy, which is their ability to grow at their natural pace and absorb natural nutrients from their roots.

In my opinion I fully support the decision and movement to eat locally. While it may not reduce your emission as much as people seem to believe, it still does make an impact whether it be on the planet or even people. Supporting small local farmers is so much better than supporting corrupt big scale agri- businesses that only want your money and could care less about your health and the environment. I believe if people made more of an effort to buy local food we could could see a tremendous difference in our health and even our environment considering all of the environmental damage that is done to grow food, but not so much transport it.

Readings 9 (Food)

This weeks readings talk primarily about food and where it comes from. Like everything else in the twenty first century food is a global product traveling hundreds if not thousands of miles just to get to your local grocery store. However there is a new movement with the rise of local grown food that you can pick fresh from the field.

One of the main highlights of these readings is how far food travels just to get into our possession. Some food goes over a thousand miles just to get to us bringing up the freshness question but since it was deemed alright to sell then I think the food is somewhat safe to eat. I tend to think of all the lawsuits and shutting down of companies if they did sell us food that was entirely rotten and bad to eat so that gives me a safety net in picking out my food at the supermarket. Sure it isn't the strongest safety net but I can be positive that a business wants to sell a good product in order to survive.

In my opinion food is food no matter where it comes from and as long as it's edible and doesn't make you feel bad then it has done its job. Sure there is a draw to the new locally grown with being able to see where your food is coming from, helping out the local community, and the extra freshness it has. However on the other side the local grocery store has a diverse collection of food from all around the world and in a way you could help out local businesses in third world countries by shopping at the local grocery store.

I can see where both sides of the argument are coming from because I have experience with both sides. I like most other people in this country get a majority of my from the supermarket due to convenience and I do appreciate that there's the possibility of helping out business in a different part of the world. However I do look forward to every summer to get some locally grown corn since it always taste better than the corn at the grocery store in my opinion and I know there's a benefit to helping out the local farmers.

I think we should strive for a middle ground approach with a return to agriculture on the local level and allow every access to freshly grown food while still having the local grocery store just in case. This would be kinda hard to implement due to the fact that crops die in the fall time leading to the growing of food in indoor facilities.

Readings 9

This weeks readings focused on food and how it is traded throughout the global market. Food is one of the most import commodities in our lives, so it is not a surprise that it is a major player within the global market. Food we have is from all over the world weather we realize it or not. Walk into your local super market and take a look at food on any shelf and you will find that it probably comes from somewhere else. Some types of food are only grown in specific parts of the world and because of this we are required to trade in order to eat and enjoy various types of food.

One of the big takeaways from the readings this week was how far food travels before it arrives in its desired location. It trades so many hands, and goes through various places before arriving on the shelves at stores and supermarkets. During our lecture it was mentioned that in some cases food will travel over 1000 miles before it arrives on the shelf. That's crazy! Think about that for a moment. A banana we eat with our breakfast could have been half way around the globe maybe 2 weeks earlier! However, this brings about the question of the quality of our food. How fresh is "fresh"? Is "organic" really organic? What does "natural" actually mean?

What we begin to see are a rise in local farms and eating locally. This idea is taking off rapidly because it is improving on the quality of the food and taking away the travel time. It is also supporting local farms that in many ways struggle to compete with larger corporate run farms who are constantly trying to buy them out by making it very difficult to compete in the market.

It is difficult to take one side in this situation. Supporting local food is a wonderful cause to support. It gives business to local farmers and allows for fresh food to be put on the market. At the same time, having food from around the world we normally would not have is also important because it allows us to experience new cuisines. I support local foods, and I think there should be a push towards supporting local farms on a national level. However, it does not mean we should abandon a global market that exchanges food because we absolutely rely on it in this day and age. The best option is to find a balance that is beneficial for all so we can still have a wealth of food that is both locally grown and globally provided.


This weeks reading was about food and why local eating is seen as good and the issues critiques make for it.

The readings had a theme of putting down advocates of local eating. To me, food is food. Food, water, air, and shelter contribute to the basis of human life. Whether if it comes from 1500 miles away or 15,000 miles away doesn't matter unless you have high concern for the environment. As people advocate for local eating, they continue to bring up the polluting gas emissions that come from the trucks that deliver us our prized fruit, vegetables, grains, and meats. Some of the advocates avoid the reality of harsh chemicals and gas used on these locally raised crops and animals. Yeah the food is grown locally, but what is actually in it? As animals differ from what they use to look like about 10 years ago, hormones in both animals and plants create fast and large growing crops. It may be local but it's not natural. Yeah going to farmers markets are a great experience and the food does taste better than Giants but they are chemically altered as is the air from the food that is transported.

As people in, other countries that are high in the exporting crops business, try to hold onto their local food traditions with their native ingredients but come across problems like companies placing patents on them. As companies place patents on a countries native crop, there is the issue that the country won't receive the credit of being its home, money that the company makes will not go back to the country, and the resources of the crop itself will diminish as it becomes popular on the market. This is an example of local eating not winning even though there are many advocates who preach of it importance. Articles like the one about the neem tree are important because they show the truth of where "exotic" ingredients come from and their native uses instead of what we or the importing country uses it for.

Local eating is great but so is eating food from different countries. Local eating helps communities grow so they can earn a living and so they can produce more crops but another issue like what does into them should have the spotlight too. Getting food from different countries help harm the environment but there should be a way to get food from those countries, give them credit/give them what they deserve, and grow the food wherever without driving the resources back into the ground that they should rise from.

Globalization and Food

In this weeks readings, we observed the impact of food in the global market. Food is one of the most important things in a humans life as it fulfills a basic necessity. And of course it would become part of the global market almost immediately. Food is traded throughout the world, like our banana's come from Jamaica and our rice from Asia. Since different types of food is grown throughout the world, other places pay money for shipping these specific foods all across the county. However, there is always problems.

One of the big takeaways from this weeks readings was the movement of food. With food constantly moving, people have estimated that most people's food travels around 1500 miles before being served. What does this mean for the food? It means that the food can go anywhere easily, yes, however it is not always fresh. By traveling in the back of trucks and kept refrigerated throughout, the produce becomes less fresh. So places are pushing for something called "local eating", or promoting people to buy locally grown food. Many feel that this would help benefit communities and it has become a trend around the world. By people reducing their food miles, they have effectively made the food that  much fresher and better for the consumer, as well as help out farmers that are nearby. But, since local commodities are usually patented, some of the produce located in developing areas can be taken from the community and sold to the world. An example of this is the Neem tree in India. This tree is used in Indian villages for everything, from medicine to fuel. However, a company came in and took credit for finding this tree, and causing a lot of trees to be used for the global market. India tried fighting back, but since there was a patient on the product,it became hard to fight.

My opinion is that food is better off locally grown, however importing food you cannot get from your area is good as well. Food that is locally grown is better for everyone, it had a shorter travel distance, reducing the pollution from the truck it came in on, it helps out local farmers, and it taste better and it's better for you. Politicians should push for more locally grown food more and more, and not import as much food, making a dependency on imports. 

Friday, April 21, 2017


This weeks reading were concerned about the environment and organizations that are concerned about it as well.

To begin, the article on the Washington Post discussed the issues of dust from the graphite mines in China. This article showed a couple in distress about how an industry only cares for itself and its product instead of the people around them. The couple would wipe black dust from their windowsill, eat the graphite dust as it resides on their food, and cough up the graphite dust as it has settled in their lungs. The wife in the article told the reporters that when they entire the fields to tend to their crops they come out with their faces blackened from all the dust the pollutes their air, and not only do they have to leave with blackened faces but they leave with blackened corn or other crops that they use to eat. The villagers speak up about their concerns but no one seems to have urgency under their feet to help them. Its also crazy to see how China is leading the graphite industry but its civilians are paying for it with their bodies and their crops. This just really shows how different industries are compared to civilians, they both exist with the help of one another but they don't have the interest when it comes the simple fact of whose wellbeing is important.

Chapter 64 and 65 were chapters discussing the importance of advocacy programs for the environment. Chapter 64 talked about the Greenpeace organization and how it has a global voice for the global environment. Which i think is pretty funny as how the Greenpeace organization can have a voice for the global environment, something that has no voice because it is natural but needs a voice because of pollution that mankind has involved in order to expand at a rapid pace. I think its funny because people have to create more and more programs to fix the effects of our causes in order for us to grow quickly, think of it like someone taking medicine for the side effects of their other medication. Even though they are fixing mistakes they do it in a positive way as they propose programs that fit the customs of the cultures of the regions they placed in. What is also refreshing form chapter 64 is that Greenpeace doesn't focus on changing the policies but focuses on changing the attitudes as those attitudes think of and can change the present policies. In chapter 65, deforestation in Sarawak on the island of Borneo raised eyebrows as its campaign to stop it plays on. There're many issues with this but what stayed with me is how there were agreements for deforestation to have limits but yet again there was no urgency or pressure to make sure that it was followed. They continued to destroy the forest and used the people who stayed in the forest areas as puppets to do their work but they left them behind, unemployed and with little to no forest. They changed the lives of the people who stayed as the forest was their home. Though the chapter talked about the advocacy that came out of deforestation and some of the positive aspects that came from it, it also shows how the world works. The world shines a light on the ugly and beautiful but only the ugly is what stays with people, such as i did know that deforestation was a problem and i knew of the advocacy efforts trying to stop it but I truly didn't know of the amount of lives that were effected directly and the amount of advocacy movements that are trying to implement change.

Reading 8

In this week readings, we focused on the impact of globalization as a means to save and to try to protect the environment.  In the first reading, we have a look at the inner workings of Greenpeace and their involvement in world environmental activities. This was interesting because they were able to be more influential in world politics thanks to the means of globalization. Now they are able to use media to reach as many people and provoke an interest and therefore change. It is a relief that we just don't have the big corporations that have spread around the globe, we also have global organizations to fight them in case they are harming the environment and the people. The second article is also supplemental to this one, where we have a native people protesting against companies that are in charge or lumbering in Malaysia. In this reading, we have the public of a country trying the best to save their land and homes because they are being polluted by unclean air. I believe that globalization is what makes these protest effectively because as they noted on the articles, business just goes about their business after the protest like nothing happened. they are able to communicate to people around the world to create a new view on the company or the practice. 

On the last article, we see how these problems are presented to the public in an effective way to be able to change our behavior to help as much as possible a person or community. In this reading, we have a town that is constantly being covered by graphite from the factory that produces batteries for cell phones that we all use. the use of images and the story actually created an impact on me and how I view batteries now, they pictures of people just passing their hand in a desk and having visible graphite in their hand makes it feel like you have some fault in that. It is easy to see how people get rallied up to make some change and prompt governments to act. For me, this effect of globalization is actually very effective at what it does, and they do see some results from the people that see this, it also creates a view that the world is falling apart and that we are practically doomed in one way or another. while I do believe it helps, I also believes it places in our mind a sense of hopelessness if we don't find a way to fight back or help the cause.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Readings 8

The first reading started talking about environmental activist organizations and started the reading off by saying do all of these environmental policies and activism actually matter in globalization. It made me think for a minute what are we actually accomplishing with protests and activism. I thought that, yes it does matter if you have enough people to care about the problem. I found it interesting that people think that "government decrees are the key to change" but then the reading goes and says no that is not really the case, "government decrees are reflections of change" meaning that the change is already occurring. the decrees are just reflecting it. I thought it was interesting that Greenpeace is structured into four categories "toxic substances, energy and atmosphere, nuclear issues, and ocean and terrestrial ecology" which covers most of the worlds environmental problems. The big complication with these topics is that even if they occur in one country they can have effects in other countries as well. Air moves around the world and is not stationary, so pollution from China can reach the united states, or Europe. It is interesting that Greenpeace is not a government or governing body but they still work on laws that can have an affect globally. We have talked about the effects that media has on policy and how it puts pressure on governments,Wapner states ". Greenpeace actions excite the eye. They portray people taking dangerous risks. These grab attention and thus receive media coverage. By offering spectacular images to the media, Greenpeace invites the public to bear witness; it enables people throughout the world to know about environmental dangers and tries to pique their sense of outrage" Greenpeace is using the media to their advantage like many other people do. Citizens will be mad about something if they can visualize and see it. 

The second reading also talks about environmental advocacy, but instead of talking about a group first it talks about an environmental problem which was deforestation. The article talks about Sarawak and Sabah which are on the island of Borneo in Malaysia. There is a big timber industry but this causes severe deforestation which leads to less forest cover, which means less CO2 is being absorbed which means that there is more being let out to the atmosphere. The deforestation in this area put the natives in danger of losing their resources and caused them to protest with the help of other people and organizations. They blockaded the area and protested the industry because their lives were in danger. It is interesting to think that we in developed countries buy wood like this to build and furnish our homes, but we are forcing people out of theirs to build our own. 

The article about the graphite mining alarms me because the article did an interview in which Chinese person says that the air sparkles because of the particles in the air. First of all that is extremely dangerous to be breathing and since the particles are big enough to see with the human eye they are only small enough to get into the upper respiratory system. That does not seem as bad but that is still extremely dangerous and can cause a wide variety of respiratory problems. The other problem is that if there is particle big enough to see, you know that there is particle small enough that people cannot see (particulate matter 2.5) that is small enough to get into the lower respiratory problems and agitations like asthma (which can kill people in less developed countries). The article talks about a village that reminds me of a desolate waste land, the water is undrinkable, the air is unbreathable, the trees are dead, and there is a dust on everything even the food contaminating it. The graphite dust follows these people through their daily lives in almost every aspect and China is not doing enough to clean it up. The graphite is used in pencils and batteries for big companies that operate in developed countries, so these people get none of the benefits from this. It is deeply disturbing that these people live their lives in a cloud of dust so we can have electronics and pencils. 

readings 8

When large corporations can design, obtain resources for, manufacture, and sell a product in four different corners of the globe, protecting the earth becomes more imperative than ever. Local policies are no longer as effective as they may have been once - environmentalism is a global issue that requires a global approach to action.

Greenpeace knows this and uses it to their advantage. Few other environmental NGOs have reached Greenpeace's scope and status, because they know how to use media to reach a worldwide audience. By filming and broadcasting their endeavors - whaling activity, dangerous protests, etc - they sensationalize environmental activism and capture the attention of millions, influencing them to get involved. Even if they don't manage to accomplish their goals in the video, they have brought the issue to the forefront/public eye, which is much more effective than a single protest or local policy change because it spurs masses around the world into action. Ironically, this strategy is reminiscent of the advertising campaigns corporations use to market their brands to a global population - they know well how much more potent ideas can be than an actual product. Greenpeace also chooses to target the general public rather than environmental officials themselves. They cannot possibly speak to every lawmaker individually about changing environmental policy, but if they convince enough citizens that something needs to change, the citizens will influence their local legislators to change policy themselves.

They are not the only organization that has used the power of the media to inspire global action. Sahabat Alam Malaysia is an environmental organization that campaigned to put an end to the destruction of forests in Sarawak. In addition to physical protest of the timber industry, the campaign was supplemented by the release of a documentary about the forest nomads of Penan fighting to preserve their homes. This contributed greatly to efforts around the world to protect the forests of Malaysia. However, though people outside of the nation were deeply affected, in Malaysia structural, economic and governmental stakes were too great to put an end to the industry completely. Individuals and groups only have so much power over environmental policy. Furthermore, these campaigns largely put the onus on officials in Malaysia to end logging despite the fact that importers were creating the demand for which the export of timber existed to meet in the first place. Environmental activism must recognize that environmental decisions are more often than not the result of national motivations and needs, not some maligned desire to kill all the rainforests and destroy the Earth.

It can then be difficult to enact environmental protections when a large economic conflict of interest exists, because the state of the environment and the state of the economy are deeply tied to quality of life. In a village in China near a factory that produces graphite for smartphone and other electronics batteries, both of these states are quite poor, to put it lightly. The residue from the production of graphite coats every surface in the village, pollutes the villagers' water and hangs in the air they breathe. They do not make enough money to leave the village for somewhere safer and cleaner. However, when reporters appeared on the scene to get their input and bring their situation to light, potentially inspiring change, many villagers refused to speak with them as they were afraid of losing their jobs and what little revenue they do earn. The largest conflicts of interest occur not on the local level but on the corporate - factories want to continue bringing in money from battery companies, battery companies want to continue receiving the cheapest supply in order to pull the largest profits and so on up the supply chain. Lack of a sense of responsibility is also a factor - in many places there is little education or awareness that protection of the environment is even an issue, and corporations in places where this is common knowledge rely on the obscurity of their supply chains to avoid taking the hit.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Readings 8

Chapter 64 is about greenpeace which is a globalized NGO that cares about how the environment is handled in multiple ways. It gives example on how industries would come to places and ruin culture and that is something they peacefully fight against. Greenpeace makes majority of their funds from campaigners gaining donations. Their main goal is not to change policies but to change attitudes of the politicians that are behind the cause of what they stand for.

Chapter 65 was on how countries that develop products in a large quantity and it is their main source of income are not properly disposing the waste which is having a negative effect on other countries as well as on the environment. The example they give in the beginning and in the middle of the chapter is deforestation in Malaysia where it ruined the land going from 4.4 million in log output to 12.2 million in a matter of a year. Because of this organizations have been fighting to give right to indigenous people to protect their land because they were the main ones who were harmed by this outcome.

The Washington Post journal emphasizes on the battery and graphite dumping in China. China is a large country but has a lot of poverty due to individuals doing work for cheap. These battery and graphite dumping are harming the crops, homes, and the air people breathe. Most of the batteries come from samsung. Chinese are not the only ones affected there is a city outside of russia that has the sign "City of Graphite" when entering. A lot of this happens because it is low cost disposal, but companies do not see a problem in what they are doing and when they do it takes a while to change it.

All these articles gave insight on how companies handle waste and how it is affecting people and their land. In my opinion there needs to be a safe way to dispose of these products at a low cost and not harming people and their surroundings/ survival settings leaving them with little to nothing.

64, 65, and WSJ Readings

The theme of the readings this week focused on the environmental impact globalization has had on the world. This is something that has become a more important issue in recent years, and has really risen in global importance. The 3 readings showed how different countries have to cope with different environmental issues they experience as a result of globalization.

I found one sentence in the introductions second paragraph very interesting.  The paragraph itself brings up how air pollution being a big topic was not something that has existed for a long time.  The final sentence states, "Not only was pollution not a global problem; for the most part it was not a problem at all." This really had me thinking of how air pollution is only a recent global issue, and that for a long time the air was much worse, and no one really complained.

Chapter 64 follows Greenpeace, an NGO that is situated all around the world. The goal of this group is peaceful, non-violent solutions to problems all around the world. Greenpeace has been successful in many endeavors in order to spread their message, and promote a healthy world. One example used in the chapter was their discovery that Russian whalers were killing whales well below the required size. The group was able to capture film, and also stationed themselves between the whales and ships to spread their message and force action to be made. Another example was their direct action to stop ozone depletion in the late 1980s. Some members climbed a 180 foot water tower owned by DuPoint and hung a ribbon awarding them the world's number one ozone destroyer.

Chapter 65 looks at the negative impact the environment sees as a result from globalization. This, in my opinion, is a two front assault. On one end you have countries where products are developed, and the waste from their factories are improperly or illegal dumped into the wild. The other factor is countries who see their natural resources taken in large quantities and suffer the health and safety issues that result from this mining. One example brought up was the deforestation in the Penan region of Malaysia where deforestation destroyed the land and its natives.  The WSJ article shows the effects graphite mining has had on small villages in two Chinese provinces. Ruined crops, homes, and people as a result of large graphite mines that are not properly regulated and run. These people are suffering at the expense of our smart phones. It is a tragic story to read about, and unfortunately not much may be done.

These readings were rather interesting in my opinion. It was a tough pill to swallow looking at the images in the WSJ article on my phone. Here I was reading about an essential material needed for my smartphone that was slowly killing people half way around the globe. It hurt, but I know that we can slowly try to fix these problems. It is not something that will happen quickly, but having more groups like Greenpeace will allow us to have a larger impact on the globalization issue. There are pros and cons to this phenomena, and to say we must stop globalizing is not going to solve anything. It is important to balance everything involved with globalizing so we are able to continue to grow, but in a safer manner. Our environment and our fellow human beings are just as, if not more important than the graphite needed for our phones. If we cannot realize that, we will see the negative impacts in no time.

Readings 8

Humanity has always been shaping the environment around them whether it be somewhere for them to live or to mine the latest resource. Despite how much we had gone through resources we have never left a major impact on the environment. However in the common era we are starting to leave a negative effect on the environment with over-mining resources and digging deeper in the Earth for materials that have a toxic effect for living matter.

An example of this impact is the deforestation of the Malaysian state of Sarawak. In less than ten years a timber industry had come into the area and had managed to cut down a majority of the forest causing the loss of habitat for many animals and forcing the local people to leave the area.

In result of problems like deforestation and other problems facing the environment, many campaigns have risen up and have given a mouth for the trees. Organizations like Greenpeace stand up for the environment in a peaceful, nonviolent way but still in a forceful way of getting their point across such as positioning themselves between illegal whalers and the whales they are trying to kill for a profit. In this matter they don't start any trouble with the poachers but at the same time don't let them harm the whales for profit.

It is good that we have these organizations to stand up for the environment because if they didn't exist people and corporations would abuse the environment leading to more pollution and destruction and with no one to stand in their way they would keep abusing it. It's good we have these organizations to shine a light on what is important for our long run as a species and one of those things is keeping the environment in which we live in safe and non polluted.

Chapter 64, 65 and In Your Phone, In Their Air

In this week’s readings, we looked at some environmental impacts that has come from the process of globalization. Chapters 64 and 65, as well as the article In Your Phone, In Their Air by the Washington Post, show the different pollutants and environmental hardships countries that produce and collect raw materials deal with.

When companies outsource their work overseas to poorer countries, usually the environment is left behind, with pollutants entering the ecosystem and causing problems for the local wildlife and population. The example in chapter 65 shows the deforestation of the Malaysian state of Sarawak, where natives of the area, the Penan, were losing their way of life. The deforestation happened so rapidly and without much resistance that within 10 years the amount of timber exported has rose around 3x as much as before. With the deforestation of the native area, people were losing their unique way of life, as well as unique wildlife that lived in the area. Another example is the Chinese villages subjected to the graphite mining pollution. Everything is covered by a black dust that cannot be washed off, ironically even if the people attempted to wash their clothes from the dust they would be met with water filled to the brim with graphite. Even farmers are not safe from the factories’ pollution, as the dust settles into their crops, having families eat the food with graphite still in the meals.

However, there have been many campaigns for improving these conditions worldwide. Chapter 64 looks at the environmental protection group Greenpeace. Situated around the world, Greenpeace goes to where the environment is in need of help in a peaceful, non-violent, manner, for example the ocean. Greenpeace will find Russian whaler ships and examine if the whaling operation is being conducted legally. If the operation is deemed illegal, for example catching and killing whales well under the national law’s size, they will position themselves between the whalers and the whales, causing a standoff for the whalers to not attempt harpooning, since it could hit one of the members. And Greenpeace does not stop there, they go out and get the media involved, making sure that images and videos of environmental abuse goes public and influences people to do something to help out.

My opinion is that without any type of organizations defending the environment, companies and corporations would forgo the environmental laws and continue to pollute the earth. With the resistance of the Penan in Malaysia getting other countries involved to enact tariffs on timber, it puts stops to these kinds of actions, albeit not all the time. By doing things in a peaceful way and getting the media involved to shine a light on these conditions to everyday citizens, people will try to lobby for change. 

Friday, April 14, 2017

13, 14, 16, 59

In chapter 13 the globalization of sushi was discussed. It became close to an American norm after deriving from Japan. This chapter talks about how cultures are shared. The marketing aspect of how sushi is sold is also interest. Some may find offense to this because I did after reading this chapter. One of the main points that intrigued me was how in places that are not in Japan have a sushi restaurant it is not profitable if the chef's are not of Japanese descent. America provides around 1000 work visa's a year to Japanese immigrants to be chefs at Japanese restaurants and majority of the time the owner is not Japanese. This article was interesting because food is a highly globalized thing even in households due to immigration having impact on american culture.  Another thing that interested me was the amount of money that can be profited from catching just 200 blue fin tuna fish, over a million dollars, and the time it takes is long as well weeks at a time.

Chapter 14 is the craze in McDonald's had in Hong Kong, China and how it affected their everyday living. The chapter lays out the amount of changes it had to take in order to fit into the culture because a hamburger is considered a snack to the Chinese people whereas in America it is the protein portion of a meal. In China McDonald's brought in a lot of customers compared to American store but did not force the American culture onto the Chinese. However the older generation was not fond of McDonald's they were very traditional people. McDonald's was seen as a place for kids and teenagers. It introduced birthday parties to the Chinese and changed the service with a smile connotation to adapt in the culture. They provided clean bathrooms which they take high pride on and having someone hover over you while you eat is a norm because it is always so busy. McDonald's is still the McDonald's that we see in America but in order to have a successful business overseas they have to adapt to the culture that they are infiltrating. If they did not adapt they probably would not have been of much success the way they are.

In chapter 16 Goldblatt discusses the globalization of sports particularly fĂștbol (soccer). Soccer was seen as a universal sport. It wasn't a company or brand that could be marketed or bought. It was a sport that poor countries played for fun because you did not need much equipment and there were little rules ... just do not touch the ball with your hands. The sport took off and then because a trademark, all countries were playing and became familiar with it and other countries would take this sport and make it their own such at England with rugby and America with American football. Other sports started globalizing as well such as baseball, cricket, hockey and more. People Japanese off the sport creating huge arenas selling out seats for people to watch the sport they all know worldwide.

Chapter 59 the discussion of the Hollywood and movie industry is brought to question. In a sense it globalizes but it doesn't. It is discussed how 200 movies are made a year in Hollywood and bring in a huge profit yet in India they produce 900 movies a year and never reach the same profit that Hollywood does. Hollywood in a sense brought globalization to it instead of them expanding. People from all origins coming to Hollywood to produce films that can be broadcasted worldwide with better production and quality that to film elsewhere. However, to save money people are starting to produce in other countries such as Canada to save money.

In the end I feel like these reading were to give the idea that it is not only corporations that globalize but cultures do as well. You can take the smallest thing such as soccer which is played with just a ball and make it into a multibillion dollar industry.

13,14,16, 51

In chapter 13 the reading first talks about tuna and how the U.S exports it to Japan. I never really thought of how much tuna Japan actually goes through. What was really interesting was that the boom in sushi is what caused the decline in tuna populations. Over fishing in Japan has caused a kind of food insecurity since Japan relies so heavily on fish as it's source of food. It is also interesting that sushi became like a designer food and it is very main stream. The interactions between the native fisherman and all of the resulting factors of the tuna industry like regulations, and competition between them and commercial fleets. Tuna are many peoples food source and income source but globalization is having effects in this. In the article about McDonald's it was interesting that in china food that you would buy at places like McDonald's are considered snacks instead of meals, and that there is not a lot of money to be made from this. They had to conform the menu's to the normal more local ideas of what food is in order to make money. There is also the question of whose culture is McDonald's? It is an American Company that is trying to move all over the world, but in order to succeed it has to Incorporated other people's cultures as well. I believe it started out as an American culture, but it spread to others, if people were worried about their cultures they would not shop there and then force them out.

I really like chapter 16 because I played soccer for 12 years and it was a huge part of my life. I like how the article talks about the spread of the sport with the expansion of the British empire and the expansion of industry. The spread of industry lead to the spread of the sport because of the movement of people and the idea of the sport. There was other sports that were played by the elite like cricket, but soccer was not just for the elite. There was also the idea of rivalry, about teams that you were supposed to be enemies for the sake of being enemies. The idea of rivalries goes across all sports, my high school has a rivalry that we go against in all sports and events, and we dislike them for the sake of disliking them. It is very silly if you think about it.

I never really thought of the geography of cinema and the effects that it has on globalization. People from all over the world go to Hollywood to express their talent and to make money because it is one of the biggest cinema centers in the world. I never really thought about how European movies do not make a lot of money in the united states, usually movies that are produced through the big names like Disney in Hollywood do really well. Hollywood has clustering because it makes most of the money and "it makes sense to cluster" because it has most of what it needs in one location. I feel like movies and cinema could be bad and good for globalization. It is good because it spreads ideas, but it is bad because it often romanticizes or over dramatizes cultures so people have this false preconceived idea of a group. It also kind of steals ideas and concepts from other cultures and can be very invasive.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Globalization and culture

This weeks readings are about the globalization and some of the most important attributes of culture, food and entertainment.

This weeks readings displayed the speed of a culture that circulates around the world, sushi. Sushi originated in Japan but it is equally admired in North America. I thought it was interesting how they showed sushi's path to the plates of hungry customers. People outside of North America enjoy and get involved with spreading the culture too. Some may argue that this is taking away from the culture it originated from as traditional rolls change. The fishermen fish by the Japanese specifications, they have a hold on their globalized culture. In Hong Kong, McDonalds is a little different. Its a huge influence here and in Hong Kong but i don't know if its as serious as they put it to be. They are keeping the fast food culture alive but they adjust it to their own culture. They changed the culture by adding their style but it continues to have the overall McDonalds zest.

My favorite article was about the great game and the informal empire. The great game being football and the informal empire being the British empire. The British empire help spread a global game. Through communism and fascist movements the informal empire gave the world a global affair that is prevalent everywhere. I really liked the point about the fans, for every team there are devoted fans and devoted rivalries. This is a sub-community within the general community of being a football fan, each fan and rivalry has their own ceremonies and superstitions that constitute it to being such a global phenomena. Even though these communities have huge rivalries with each other they are all lovers of the game and the competition of it. Even the owners of the clubs channel this essence of rivalry in their ownership of the clubs. Its pretty cool to see how the differences in each community connects them together making them more similar than different... maybe a special someone can take note of it.

The Hollywood culture is pretty intense for they are to blame for a lot of things that happens in the world. They take away from a cultures traditions and add it to their own media creation. I don't believe it would be such a large problem if they gained permission for using traditions or followed the traditions as if it was a regulation in our own country. The positive about Hollywood culture is it makes the access to other cultures easier as it appears on the big screen the world is able to decipher if its the truth or not, right or wrong, or even entertaining or appropriating. It can bring disaster to a community by inviting tourist and large companies to change their traditional ways. Large companies can take over areas where Hollywood has imprinted its large on hand, getting a grasp on traditions and resources. In the ugly there is beauty.

Readings 7

The readings this week talk about how globalization is affecting particular countries and how the culture and society handle these changes. Starting in Japan in the 1970's there was a big global shift from red meat to a healthier meat source. Japan's solution to the red meat was the fishing of the blue fin tuna and the introduction of sushi to the modern world. The fad caught on resulting in Japan becoming the blue fin tuna fishing capital of the world giving Japan more power and influence in the world helping them recover from the damages World War II left on the country.

The second part of the readings deal with the introduction of McDonalds in Hong Kong. At first McDonalds wasn't too successful over in the Eastern World but due to integration into the culture by allowing people to come to them and allowing the people to customize their meals. Financially they succeeded in the long run still the Chinese don't consider McDonalds a real meal and instead more of a snack. In conclusion McDonalds succeeded on exposing the Chinese people to the Western world while allowing them to preserve their culture at the same time.

The third part talked about the spreading of soccer due to the simplicity of the game plus it allowed the rise of "rags to riches" stories based off the people with extreme talent for the game but living in underwhelming living conditions until their talent is noticed and they become a star. It gives the people something more to cheer for more than a ball getting kicked around. The game easily spread across the globe due to all around entertainment value of soccer whether it be playing the game or watching the game.

The final article talks about Hollywood and how popular the US film industry is around the globe. With this however Hollywood becomes a representation of the Western world from the stories we like to tell down to the morals that those stories teach us and the rest of the world gets their knowledge about the American culture through these two hour films. Also the desire to make it big draws a lot of young people to Hollywood in hopes of becoming the next big star however most of them never achieve this dream and get caught in the gutter known as Los Angeles.

In conclusion it's interesting to see how these markets grows but have a major hub area with tuna in Japan and the movie industry in the USA and how with these major markets these countries influence how we consume these products whether it be tuna in the form of sushi or the next big summer blockbuster representing the stereotype of the typical American to the rest of the world. To step back for a second it is interesting how a market can influence the society and culture around them meanwhile still making a profit off of money.

Readings 7

the articles of this week are very interesting in comparison to previous readings. in past reading, all that we listen and the presentation to us is about how globalization affects culture and people. These articles show how individuals or small sections could be an influence on global markets. In the first article, we have a very interesting interaction between Japan and the Tuna economy, and how today they became the center for the business of tuna worldwide. this started with Japanese people trying to emulate Americans and their red meats so that communication is already a part of globalization. The second interaction is with the amount of bluefin tuna that japan consumes, makes it the largest buyer, and they have a huge say in the prices worldwide.  Japan controls the market in a big way. The spread of sushi is also an influence that Japan had in the world, and how they were able to add more to globalization, instead of just being consumed by American corporations. In the second article, we have the expansion of Mc Donalds to Hong Kong and how that interaction is shaping both entities. In one side people were accepting the culture that revolves around the clown and the burgers, at the same time, Mc Donalds was shaping their culture with cleaner toilets and a happy meal as rewards to achievements. In the article of soccer, we see a similar dynamic as well as the Hollywood article. we have a sport that started in Britain and became the biggest sport in the world, and now Europe controls that section of globalization. In the Hollywood article, we see the spread of American or Western ideas through film and how that is affecting other cultures, and how those cultures are affecting the movies.

What I notice from the articles is that as globalization grows, there are regions that have a specific trait for the global market, something that they control, but is shared by the world. Japan is tuna, Europe is Soccer and the U.S. McDonalds. I feel that different regions, are going to have somethong that they do best in world.

the culture of the place, by adding more traditional menus. people were adding McDonalds in their daily lives a

readings 7

Cultural globalization might appear, at first, to be a destructive force. When new concepts - pastimes, media, cuisine, traditions - are introduced to a pre-existing culture, they have the potential to replace the old ways of doing things. But that doesn't inherently mean those ways are being destroyed. For example, sometimes when concepts travel, they are incorporated into an existing framework as a transformation or even enhancement of what was already there. The globalization of ideas always has the potential to reshape culture, but for various reasons and to varying degrees.

Some ideas travel light. Sushi, for example, was developed as a method of preserving fish in a society with a large, historical fishing industry. Sushi has since spread to all corners of the globe, far removed from its original cultural context and instead transformed into a trendy menu item. The global demand for sushi-grade fish has increased not only trade with but interest in Japan - though this interest is perhaps superficial. Traditional recipes have been refashioned for western tastes - such as the California roll - and restaurant-goers purportedly can't tell the difference between a Japanese chef and one of another Asian or even non-Asian background. Nonetheless, young Japanese people working abroad are commonly advised to become sushi chefs regardless of work experience, suggesting that even the perception of one's belonging to a culture has market value in the global industry.

Oftentimes, foreign culture is adopted when it speaks to underlying or shifting attitudes in a society's climate. Sushi came into popularity in the wake of widespread rejection of red meat-heavy diets. Similarly, the introduction of the McDonald's franchise to Hong Kong served as a modernization of their existing snack culture. A love of socializing at places like cafes and bakeries combined with a rising interest in American culture paved the way for the young people of Hong Kong to readily adopt McDonald's, not as a full meal service but as a snack restaurant. The hamburger became the han bao - ham bun, the name reminiscent of a breadlike dumpling served at dim sum and a prime example of linguistic relativity - and McDonald's became a convenient alternative to traditional teahouses. Though deliberate marketing on the part of the McDonald's corporation is partly to blame for this phasing out of customary restaurants and snacks, the makings of this cultural change were already there - if it had not been McDonald's, it would have been something else.

Certain globalized concepts have the potential to stoke cultural pride rather than diminish it, sports especially. Soccer, for example, is the most widely participated-in sport across the world. It originated as a team sport during the UK industrial revolution as a way to unite workers and channel labor unrest into competition between factories. Soccer works much the same way on the global scale it exists at today - the people of a nation associate strongly with their representative team, and rivalries between international teams can easily be extrapolated to rivalries between nations themselves. It appears that soccer itself isn't even that vital to this equation. Soccer is simply one of the easiest sports to globalize - in addition to its universal appeal, all you really need to start playing is a field, a ball, and a working knowledge of the difference between right and left.

Other cultural properties are not just universal by nature, but specifically designed to target a global audience. Though many people bemoan the spread of Western values through film and cinema to their corner of the globe, this media is created with a broader appeal in mind. Most American films come out of Hollywood, and the American movie industry is the world's largest because Hollywood - economically specialized to accommodate the most talented people in the field - strives to execute ambitious projects and reach the largest market possible. In order to tap into this market they have to meet global demand, which directly involves manufacturing a universal appeal. The qualities that make a film universally appealing - action, romance, drama, etc. - are in turn associated with and considered an invention of American cinema. But rather than an unrelenting force in the media, the globalization of Hollywood movies is the product of a demand and supply exchange.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

13, 14, 16, 51

The readings this week took a look at the implications of cultural globalization and the effect they have had on the world today. We read articles about different businesses in the world and how they have adjusted to different cultures, social viewings, and threats. This ability to adapt has allowed for these different businesses to continue to prosper in the expanding global market today. We also look at two types of culture, Hollywood and Soccer, and how they have spread throughout the world in different ways. 

How Sushi Went Global discusses the bluefin tuna market in the sushi business and how it has changed over the years. Around the 1970s there was a shift in America from the common "red meat" diet to one that was more healthy and beneficial. As this shift grew more and more it became a global phenom, and we now see sushi available all over the world. With this growth, more tuna had to be caught to meet the demand and this is where things began to change. With pressure from different activist groups the Japanese had to limit their fishing strategies and soon had to turn to importing the fish. This shift should have brought about a downfall in their control in the market, but it instead made them more valuable. Despite the various limitations they face, the Japanese are consulted by countries all around the world because of their knowledge in the market. Despite this globalized movement for sushi worldwide, the Japanese still dictate the market. They set the prices, decide the rules, and have full control of everything. Japan is the sushi superpower of the world.

McDonald's in Hong Kong focused on the organizations success in a region that many thought would be impossible to live in. Watson discusses how the McDonalds in Hong Kong went through a slow and deliberate process to properly integrate itself into the culture, and be successful in the market. Watson is quick to point out that this success in Hong Kong has not in anyway taken away from their culture and "Americanized" them. Instead, he points out that they have not been striped of their culture, and it instead has strengthened their culture while also introducing them to a new one. McDonalds did so well by not trying to adapt to the Chinese culture in any way. They kept everything the way it was, and allowed the people to experiment with what they liked. They didn't try to thrust their ideas into a culture. McDonalds in Hong Kong is not seen as a meal, but instead a snack. These small but subtle things have allowed for McDonalds to thrive in a region many thought would not be possible. Offering things such as clean restrooms, friendly service, and adapting to the culture in these ways has helped the business grow at an alarming rate and gain mass amounts of wealth in the process.

In The Great Game and the Informal Empire, Goldblatt uses soccer as a way to perfectly understand globalization. Rather than go with a bland and boring way to explain globalization, he uses soccer to occupy the reader and show its simplicity. Soccer grew so quickly because it is something that any and everyone can do. It is easy to understand, the rules aren't many, and you don't need much to play. This benefits everyone because you can be a wealthy well off kid and be just as talented as the homeless boy with no shoes. This sport allowed people to have their own rags to riches tale, that not only made them successful, but also spread awareness to peoples status world wide. Soccer quickly picked up speed and spread across the world, and this was no accident. Its simplicity and enjoyment bring around a large crowd who crave more constantly. This is how many corporations also draw in massive amounts of a appeal today in order to make a profit in the market.

In the final reading by Tyler Cowen, we take a look at Hollywoods culture and its influence on the world. Film and Hollywood have become so connected that any and everyone who wants to make it big will flock to this location to make it big. In a way Hollywood has complete control on films global market and overpowers other places all around the world. This desire to make it big in Hollywood attracts people of all different backgrounds and stories. We see and hear all different types of life stories of how these people made their way to the top, and in some ways we can relate to their life. These many stories create this individualized version of the "American Dream" that viewers can somehow mold into their own life.

These different articles all offered a different view on how we can see certain things, and how the world sees them. While there are many similarities there are also many differences that open up a vast amount of possibilities. The success of something small, like soccer, depended on its simplicity and ease. For a product like sushi, it depended on its demand and popularity. Finally, for ideas like Hollywood and McDonalds, it depending on their adaptability to the individuals and their cultures.