Searching for ‘Calm’ in Chaos

Not sure why, but I have recently noticed a few diverse articles about people who are converting to fundamental religions or cults. This got me thinking about why? Believe me I don’t have the answers BUT I have my own views and I’m thinking that this could be happening [if it is in fact happening] because of the chaos in the world at present. People may be choosing these groups, with their stringent rules to find a sense of control and predictability? The question that I have is what will the consequence be if this kind of thing becomes a silent epidemic? Intolerance, hate, judgment? OR peace, calm and predictability? Will it be good or bad for the world? Is Marketing encouraging [through branding] a cult  or community behaviour?

I personally don’t think that becoming more inward focused is a good thing….Looking and reaching out, teaching tolerance and understanding, a sense of  [integrated] community and not judging is surely one of the few peaceful options available? It may ironically sound like I am judging and to be fair, I do believe that the structure that some of these religions and cults provide works for some, BUT many wars have and are fought over religion, so I worry about the future of the world if someone actually proves this trend to be right :-(.

I just read this again, and I have lots of questions! I also sound just like a hippy [wasn’t that a cult]?! HA! Interesting thought anyway!

Reading becomes sexy…[we can always hope]

The stats recording avid readers in SA are S.A.D. to say the least! The increasing lack of interest in reading seems to be a worldwide problem though [thank God for Harry Potter]. Other, more sexy tools like mobile phones, computers and TV are simply taking over. Readers are nothing new [well maybe they are for some] BUT they are pretty cool as they may encourage reading again…a cross over techno book tool – download your book? Whoosh…there goes Exclusive books…. Or is a revived reading craze just wishful thinking? The dark side of the reader is that actual paper books may eventually become like videos…! Extinct. AHHHHHhhhhh! Not good.

They are not being used massively in SA but readers are being sold in increasing quantities overseas. You can see they are gaining popularity when they bring out PINK! OH YEH! Getting one?

Sony Reader

Sony Reader

Innovation Augmentation!

I couldn’t resist! Its not like this is anything new, but its pretty cool that SA is beginning to use it in Marketing. I’m talking Augmented Reality, and nope, I am NOT talking about boobies peeps! This is augmentation of another kind! Its quite amazing really. My mind is whizzing with potential applications for this kind of innovation.

Augmented reality is a combination or rather blend of real-world and computer generated data in real time. The videos explain it best so check them out.

AtPlay used it for Wordworth books. Clever people!

Michael Jackson, Children and Excess

Michael Jackson’s death highlighted for me how much we have lost it as humans. I’m not trying to take away the sadness or reduce the impact that his death will have on the music industry but the amount of press his death got around the world astounded me.

Speculation is not my thing but what is clear is that he was not living a healthy life. He seemed to echo the lifestyles of other brilliantly creative and tortured artists…but in this case excess was certainly a contributing factor. I’ll go out on a limb and say that his health issues, to a degree, were self-inflicted. Can you argue that when you knowingly pump drugs into yourself [state of mind arguements aside]?

The man was brilliant and there is no disputing that, especially in his early days – the times that it didn’t matter if you were black or white.

For one second though, can I take you off the emotional MJ rollercoaster and present a few stats:

A quick search on Google for Michael Jackson yielded 249,000,000 hits and a subsequent search for Hungry children 97,400,000 [and this is just looking online]! I was mortified so I tried a broader term like poverty in the search box…guess… only 53,200,000!! That little exercise just proves my point, we are a world gone mad. One person who ultimately lived a privileged life [if you buy the notion that life is what you make it and take control of your own path] and died from a potentially lethal cocktail of drugs is more interesting than the 153 million malnourished children under the age of 5, 6 million of whom die every year as a result of hunger. Is that not crazy or is it just me?

I know there are those of you that will say that you cant compare..blah blah blah, but you cannot get away from the point. Our morals are messed up and we seem to have lost the plot. We pull together as a globe when a famous person living in Neverland dies but children trying to survive in the real world are dying every day and we [ordinary people] are not speaking with the same LARGE connected voice to stop it. There is no ‘ universal outpouring of grief’ for these children, most [because they come from developing countries] will more than likely be laid to rest in an unmarked grave, their little lives overlooked by a excess driven world. How sad is that :-(

And no, I am not a communist in case you were wondering, I just believe in balance and giving back! And yes, I do have MJ’s CDs the guy was a legend.

Gripe over.

The Silencing of the Women…

antique woman's toilet icon symbol on washroom doorI cannot handle the thought of rape. Even the word makes my skin crawl and heart pump faster. The word, like the act, is brutal, savage, ruins lives & imprisons people in their own bodies. So this morning when I turned on the TV to see a vitriolic alleged rapist taunting his victim calling her a ‘slut’ it didn’t make my day.  What was worse was that the victim has her nightmare continue with the taunting and court delays. She has over the last 4 years seen the worst side of our government and legal systems’ supposed support for women. She was violently gang raped in 2005 by 7 men [all youths –between 18-21] and her attackers have yet to be charged –they walk around arrogant and still very much free. This begs the the question:  If you had been raped in a poor community, after seeing this, would you come forward to go through this hell?  It must be such a lonely place to find yourself, dealing with the trauma and still dealing with the criminals as they jeer in your face, so sure of themselves. The system seems to favour them.

To the victim of this crime, the fact that you have ‘stayed in the game’ for so long to fight for your rights through such awful circumstances and no gov. support makes you my hero. You are highlighting the plight of the abused women everywhere.
So what’s our governments’ stand on this? Well with prominent figures in government, like Malema [from the ANCYL] saying things like the woman in the JZ rape case ‘must have enjoyed herself as she stayed over’ just exacerbates perceptions and very defiantly in a sick way promotes this kind of abuse towards women. He needs to learn the art of leadership and what responsibility it carries.  Lets not forget that that woman had to flee the country after numerous threats. [I wont go down the road of the JZ saga as he was acquitted but his record has a very large grey area… a ‘fish’, after all, does rot from its head and he remains very silent on these issues]. If the ANC does well at one thing its ‘silence’, an Mbeki legacy that so far seems to be upheld.
What is even more incredible [against the above background], is the ANC’s recent, very definite and loud ‘stand’ against opposition leader Helen Zille’s choice of a mainly male cabinet. As if they really care about that! Come on guys we all know its really about the politics of NOT WINNING the province – we are not that stupid! It is certainly NOT about caring for women’s’ rights. If that were the case you would be doing more for the women on the ground. The reality is that if the government really cared then this kind of rape case example [and there are numerous examples] would be top priority and morons like Malema would be publically silenced and better still removed from his position after preaching his abuse speak to youth.

When will the ANC government realise that trust lies IN THE ACTION. Really caring in this case requires leadership, action, education and a lot of selfless work. BUT most of all it requires swift justice.
To all those women out there that have been let down by the system, I am sorry. POWA and such organisations have a big task educating the South African male but it seems with the newbie’s in influencing positions in government, they may be fighting and losing battle at the moment. Please DON’T give up though, we can always hope. In the end what else do we have?

UPDATE: A judge finally found the men guilty of rape. Took long enough! There were also 8 men. One, said to be the leader- escaped and was never charged.

VODACOM SCAM

Man! I get mad with this! Check this out! Keep getting spam that I cannot ‘unsubscribe’ from at all!! What is with that? This is the 3rd one now….Feel a little like my hands are tied and I’m being fed shit! THIS KIND OF THING NEEDS TO BE ILLEGAL and I bet I get charged for the Unsubscribe SMS !! I know the resolution isnt great but you get my point!!!

Actual SMS's

The Political Art of Respect

The whole Zilla vs ANC thing has got totally out of hand. The DA really needs to stop engaging some of the dumbos in the ANC and their mudslinging politics and focus on what they are doing to build SA. Its imperative that they keep their dignity in tact [which may be difficult after this last debarcle]. I realise the whole affair [excuse the pun] started with the ANC’s critism of Zille’s choice of cabinet,  but when the ANCYL and others got involved it got really dirty.

My view is that the ANCYL is generally not worth responding to anyway with their entirely unbalanced view of things and irrational provocative comments. They seem to still believe that they are fighting some sort of ‘freedom fighter’s war’ and clearly have a strategy intended to suck their ‘enemy’ into the low end politics of mudslinging. They seem to have no respect for any view that speaks out of their well defined box. Not getting their own way usually ends up with threats and the use of bully tactics. Is that democratic?

Its time that political parties move beyond such common critism of each other [although it is sometimes needed as a check and balance, a sort of health test] and make attempts to master the art of respect. They need to concentrate on building a better democracy for all our people.

Lets act like adults shall we and run the damn country.