Big choices

I have been thinking about scale… no, not those insects on plants in the greenhouse, nor lime in the kettle, but size. With exposure to more and more global brands and international media, we find ourselves constantly bombarded by messages from large corporations and decision-makers, which make small organisations appear insignificant. The other day I was watching an episode of the TV show Boston Legal and found some of my thoughts on this issue articulated very clearly by one of the characters presenting his arguments in court (in this case in relation to the Democrat presidential selection procedure, but the point could be equally applied to other situations):

Alan Shore: My mother’s friend, Vivian, once told me, “There are only two kinds of people in this world, Alan. Dem that drink Coke. And dem that drink Pepsi.” Vivian got that notion, of course, from Coke and Pepsi. There may have been other colas, but Coke and Pepsi were the giants. Billion dollar behemoths who, in their own advertising, would each refer to the other guy as theonly alternative. Just so long as people keep on gulping down one or the other. Makes you kind of wonder if they’re in cahoots.

… When it comes to presidential elections, we again have only two billion dollar giants in control. The American people might get to vote for Commander in Chief but they only get two choices, Your Honor. Choices selected by two very private organizations who are both in bed with Big Oil, Big Tobacco, Big Pharmaceuticals, Big Banking, every Big you can think of. And as a result we only get the candidates that big business and the two parties decide to favor us with. So where’s the Democracy? The sad fact is it seems that Democracy has lost its way. And as long as we remain a two party system we’ll forever be denied a taste of that delicious RC Cola because Coke and Pepsi have cornered the market

Boston Legal, Indecent Proposals
Season 4, Episode 18
Written By: Craig Turk & Jill Goldsmith & David E.Kelley

And there you have it… should we choose to accept the message delivered to us by big organisations, we can get sucked into the idea that we do only have limited choices, that their alternatives are the only alternatives. And so I invite you to ignore the marketing and the media and think for yourself. Buy ‘that delicious RC Cola’  if that seems the right choice for you, or brew your own, or drink tea! Seek alternatives; be creative; question the limits; and always, always be your own person and don’t get bullied by big business.

Coke or Pepsi? Or you could just have a cup of tea

Coke or Pepsi? Or you could just have a cup of tea

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23 Comments

  1. I’m definitely a tea girl 🙂 I’ll occasionally share a Pepsi Max wit E but usually I drink tea (especially peppermint) and water.

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  2. A very good message 🙂 think out of the box

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  3. PS if i could, I’d give it 10 likes 😉

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  4. You sent in Italy a breeze of fresh air…a very good message!I think I remember the Boston Legal episode you’re talking about…

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  5. I think as I don’t have a television, by choice, that luckily I get to ignore a lot of the big organisations and mass messages and advertising. I love your idea chose the little guy or brew it yourself.

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    • An absence of television certainly helps, but there seem to be increasing numbers of adverts on the internet too. We need to train ourselves to ignore them wherever they are!
      I have to confess that I would always have water or tea rather than any sort of cola!!

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      • I think big business finds the internet a more powerful advertising tool than tv now. Not having a TV won’t protect us, we have to start exercising our individual non-participation choices every time we are online.

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  6. Tea, coffee, pepsi max, I’ll drink them all. But what I’d love to see is a system where a limit is set on what can be spent on elections and private donations are not allowed so that maybe the candidates owe no-one a favour if they win. Maybe someone with out vast amounts of money could win too, given half a chance.
    xxx Cwtch xxx

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  7. Just for the records,I drunk a lot of tea today and I awfully enjoyed it! 😀

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  8. I am fascinated by trolley contents when I do visit the supermarket – now do they afford all that crap but then I realise the crap is probably cheaper than my purchases. I don’t get to the supermarket often as I mostly shop at farmers markets for food, and online home delivery shop for household items, which are as eco choice as I can manage. But it can be tricky, sometimes detective skills and investment of investigative time are required to follow the ownership trails. My online shopping lists evidence a deliberate adjustment to making informed sustainable choices. As I don’t live alone it’s not just about me though, so a few small bottles of coke are on the list from time to time for the G.O. but mostly we drink boiled, filter tap water in the city & tank water at TA, organic fair trade tea and coffee (beans), wine, and the odd beer for the G.O. If we were the benchmark of consumerism the Big Co’s would be out of business. I wish. Thankfully, there are more than those two kinds of people in the world, and we are undertaking a revolution.

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    • I always wonder what people think of my trolley contents because they never include fresh fruit and vegetables – which come from the local farms or organic shop. There are probably people behind me in the queue thinking what an unhealthy diet I have!

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  9. I think the tide is turning. For many reasons. Peeps are thinking for themselves more.
    Tides and pendulums turn slowly. 🙂

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  10. I think being aware that one is being manipulated, to realize that others have no power over what you think and what you do, is the first and perhaps last step towards real freedom.

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  11. This was a great reminder and good timing, with the holiday season approaching and big companies advertisements surrounding us everywhere! I’m really trying to buy local as much as I can this year…

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