Raping your customers

Marketing is defined as exploring your customer’s needs and then meeting them.

Modern businesses which are driven to produce a profit for external shareholders are typically reduced to the situation where all they are concerned to do is to make profits. The ‘bottom-line’ is all-important. Either they have to make more profits than last year (in case the investor’s money goes elsewhere) or they have to strive to increase profits when they are falling. In any event all these kinds of businesses are just geared around one aim; to increase profits in the short to medium term.

In this context the legitimate aim of marketing is perverted. If the customer doesn’t need

The NSPCC is pants

The NSPCC is running a radio ad campaign to ‘teach parents how to talk to their children about the danger of abuse’.

The campaign features children (or people speaking in children’s voices) talking with their parents about their pants.

In fact this is probably a step forwards for the NSPCC. At least in this advert Mum is seen as someone to talk to, not presented as a figure of danger herself.

But, really; ads, on national radio about parents talking to their children about their pants.

Contrary to what the NSPCC would have people believe child sexual abuse is relatively rare. It is this incessant going on about it which normalises abuse.

Faking it

In Northern Ireland the government is spending public money faking economic activity. This report from Reuters  describes how the government is dressing up derelict shops with posters and paintings to make them look like thriving businesses. This is in the run up to a G8 conference to be held in Northern Ireland.

This seems a nice example of how the corporate-state-bureaucratic classes live in a phantasy world. They are prepared to use public money to sustain their phantasy. Rather than see the dereliction and decay which inevitably accompanies capitalism they paint over it.

Northern Ireland Environment Minister Alex Attwood is quoted as saying: “Northern Ireland is in the international spotlight so it is entirely right that we should portray it in the best light possible”. Just like China – or any other country the British press mocks when they fake it for the Olympics or some other major event.

Notice too the modern language of the political class; it is  “entirely right”. That is he is not going to justify it by argument and evidence, or by appeal to some sort of shared (democratic) principals. It is just “entirely right”. (“Beyond argument” as the Guardian would say).

Why do people vote for these people?

 

No option off the table

Hague has apparently said that “no option is off the table” if Syria “refuses to negotiate”.

They did this with Yugoslavia too. Come to a conference and agree to what we want or we’ll invade / bomb you into smithereens.

And just so they know that we (here at The New Observer) aren’t completely dumb – all this talk of lifting the EU arms embargo on supplying the armed opposition in Syria. The UK is already arming the opposition. The UK is sending armoured vehicles and body armour. That isn’t for defensive purposes. That is so the armed groups can carry out raids.  And no doubt the UK is acting in concert with its Middle Eastern allies as they did in Libya allowing the latter to supply the actual weapons. (Qatar supplied weapons to the Libyan opposition).

Once again; the responsible course of action and the one the British regime should be taking is to promote the UN peace process on Syria. We should be urging all sides to negotiate unconditionally. And not sending “non-lethal” arms in.

Update 24 May

Hague is reported today by Reuters as saying:

We do think it is important ahead of any negotiations … for the Assad regime to understand that the pressure on it will intensify in the absence of successful negotiations

 

That is clear then. “Successful negotiations” means presumably an outcome favoured by the West. Assad has about as much choice as a voter in a Western ‘democracy’. Â The illusion of choice.

 

Update 27 May

Hague is reported by RT as saying:

It is important to show that we are prepared to amend our arms embargo that the [President Bashar] Assad regime gets a clear signal that it has to negotiate seriously

 

This is another favoured trick. We get a resolution passed on the basis that we need a “credible threat”, as if it were simply a negotiating tool. Then, as soon as we’ve got it, we use it. Similar tricks were used to get resolutions passed on Iraq.

 

Update 27 May

It looks like the EU arms embargo on sending arms to the opposition in Syria has not been renewed and thus ends.

So; William Hague is triumphant that British tax revenue can now be used to send weapons to the opposition in Syria. The same opposition who has repeatedly refused to accept the UN Geneva accord as a basis for talks. The same opposition which kidnaps UN soldiers, murders prisoners in cold blood and is linked to car bombings.

The global corporate ‘Western’ Â state must want to get rid of an ally of Iran really really badly for them to want to arm people like this.

 

 

 

DBS checks – their real purpose

I’ve just signed up for an agency to do support work with young people. My first shift is tomorrow.

I’m given the location where I have to be and told to bring my CRB form. I hum and ha a bit and say slightly evasively it is in my ‘filing cabinet’. Basically I don’t want to turn this into a horrible situation where the main thing about me as I turn up to work with young people is that I have a certificate which shows I’m not a (convicted / charged)