Yesterday the LiveEarth concerts were staged around the world, many broadcasted on TV, I was working and missed it all (and probably wouldn't have watched much either, not really my musical taste). However, I do want to post my thoughts on it.
Firstly, there was criticism by Geldof and co. saying that it was copying the Live8 concerts held a while back around the Make Poverty History campaign that it was stealing its thunder to an extent, and that the event lacked clear goals (like Live8 actually met its goals!).
Now, unlike some liberal commentators I don't have a problem with the so-called hypocrysy of musicians who travel a lot because of touring, performing at a gig that aims to get carbon emissions lowered. (not that i am defending huge levels of individual consumption). A bigger problem for me is the fact the event is being sponsered by multinational companies that are part of the problem. This was at it's most hypocritical in China where the concert was virtually invite only to the country's elite, with only 3000 attending.
However, for me the concert was like putting the chicken before the egg. It was standing for in general a good idea (that of reducing carbon emissions), but with a wrong approach of how to get there blaming all individuals equally, when us poor people have don't have the money to spend on all these low cost alternatives. Looking to China again, as I posted a while back there have been mass protests against a chemical plant there, which has forced the local government to back down. It is these mass movements that we should look to attempt to tackle the problems of climate change, armed with a socialist programme of nationalising the economy under democratic workers control where discussion on how to plan lower carbon emissions (by producing energy efficient products cheaper etc.) could be put into practice. Concerts could be used to fundraise for such a movement or popularise the ideas of a movement, but only real struggle can create such a movement.
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