Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Last month Cornell University released research results that if we gave just a little thought to the hypothesis, we would soon grasp its simplicity: if given the opportunity to interact with nature from a young age, a greater care for the environment is evident as an adult.

The researchers refer to it as "wild nature play" - its not rocket science. Its much the same as saying that you'll be better at maths if you are given number exercises as a kid. The distinction of course is that numbers are all around us every day. Because we are largely an urban population nature is NOT around us every day. Our consumer society is driven by media rather than nature, so we consume what we're told rather than what we "feel". The perfect example is bottled water - why apply a supply chain process to what you can get from your tap?

When shopping we generally go for convenience, "value", and looks. Generally we give no consideration to the impact of our purchase on nature; on the environment. And of course that's where ShoppingFix comes in. By using ShoppingFix outlets you can be sure that the environment IS considered. Again, its not rocket science. Its simply a instilling some natural accountability into our consumer society.

This rant has been a long time coming. I'm constantly lamenting our TV culture where
reality is packaged by media companies rather than left to be individually determined in accord with our natural being. In short we have become dumb - and its in the interest of the profit driven sector of our community for us to remain dumb. We can believe packaged reality because we don't see natural reality. We create buffers from nature, we harness nature, we create concrete environments, we get boob jobs. Seldom do we see ourselves as part of nature.

This rant is of course influenced by one of
my favourite books - Walden by Henry David Thoreau; by Noam Chomsky (of Manufacturing Consent fame); and by my having attended a David Suzuki film night recently at the Film Archive. Its also influenced by our collective responsibility as global citizens to Aotearoa/New Zealand. As Kiwis we are unique. Our land is unique. We are more connected to our land than any other "developed" nation is to theirs because our primary sector provides more than 50% of our GDP. More than twice as much as any other OECD nation. As a country we need to get real, we need to get smart, we need to get sustainable. Our very being depends on it.

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