Tag Archives: government

Juxtaposition For Change

Juxtapose

food-waste.png

(Image: https://static.independent.co.uk/s3fs-public/styles/article_small/public/thumbnails/image/2015/06/01/17/food-waste.png)

 

I find this image a powerful juxtaposition, and clearly this was the intention, and full credit to the artist who constructed it because it really sends a message. The date in the URL indicates that this artistic comment was prior to, and part of, the European change forcing supermarkets to donate their superceded fresh food to charities working with the homeless and destitute. The Guardian 5.2.2016 reported that the French government had legislated to make supermarkets give unsold food to charities for redistribution, instead of destroying it or dumping it. According to the Guardian, at that point French had been wasting 7 million tonnes of food annually.

In the UK Tesco, according to the Daily Mail, June 4, 2015, voluntarily has offered to give food to charities as part of a waste cutting process. And into 2018, it is the food charities in Australia that are being proactive in pursuing the supermarkets to donate to groups like Foodbank. and similar work is being done in the US and elsewhere.

In some countries there has been a clever utilization of technology whereby there are apps to help groups, individuals and companies to strategically donate.

It is a win-win. The supermarkets can sign off on community charity work, the supermarkets can deal with waste as an issue, the charities are now receiving the help they’ve only ever dreamed about, and the people in desperate need are receiving help. The only note of sadness is that it has taken a crisis of waste to shame the govenrments and supermarkets into action. But at least they’ve now taken action. And to think that most of it (though not all, because in some countries it was utilized in farming) was destined for landfill.

It’s not new, but it is a renewal of an older idea that has returned out of necessity. I’m really taken with this new found advocacy that has sought to influence how community works and how commercial interests behave. What excites me most is that it has been a grass roots process to get the supermarkets and governments to cooperate in such a venture. It tells me that people power is still a legitimate force, that there is a conscience in many places across the world, that ordinary people can influence poltical and commercial process, and that we can be creative in response to needs.

It gives me hope that we are not giving up, that we can tackle the big issues and make headway. It also tells me that we can do more. If we can influence food policy, surely we can tackle even bigger issues, like dealing with developing world debt, disease, poverty, homelessness, refugees, and even war.

Food is not all that we waste. We waste time, money and ability. There has been, in Australia, a diminishing of volunteering, there has been a lack of commitment to helping those charitees working with refugees, the homeless, and those in poverty. But if we can change food policy, surely we can change other avenues of social and economic need. To me there is more to be done at the point of cause. why is there wasted food in supermarkets? So, it’s about tackling the big questions of how we can effect change in society, especially for the most vulnerable. And when you lose heart because change seems impossible, such achievements as this give hope for the long haul, that, in fact, change is achieveable, it only takes, energy, passion, time and effort on our part. Let’s not waste our time!

Paul,

pvcann.com

 

 

 

17 Comments

Filed under community, creativity, food, life, mindfulness, politics

Astonishing Corellas

via Daily Prompt: Astonish

 

The White Corella. The noise is astonishing, they are one of the flocking birds and they come in large numbers. I took this a couple of weeks ago at a local park, you can’t see the birds very well, just a white speck or two and one near the end in the tree (swinging up-side-down), but the point of this video was to capture the sound.

Sadly the city council have successfully made a case to have their numbers reduced, they have been deemed a nuisance because of their noise, numbers, they dig up lawns, eat fruit and buds, and poop everywhere. I don’t mind them, but you know what people are like, they whine about the stain on the roof, the aerial interference, the untidy lawn, the loss of rose buds, the loss of apricots or other fruit. To the point that the people whining about the birds are more annoying than the birds.

Wherever I go I keep hearing, reduce the shark numbers, reduce the corellas, reduce the Ibis, the Egret, reduce nature. I never hear reduce humans, but that would be too shocking! I think Mr. Smith (The Matrix) was right when he suggested that humans are a virus. Yes, balance is important, but we have biased the balance in our favour. When developers are permitted to build housing estates near estuaries and lakes, then water birds will be in those places – does building your house mean you get permission to moan about the fact that there were pre-existing neighbours in your suburb? I don’t think it does.

If you buy a house near an existing airport, the government doesn’t just jump to and move the airport for you, it is likely to send you away with a reminder that you bought the house knowing the issue was there. Now that is not always true with nature. Sometimes the birds will develop new flight paths, or will seek out districts where food and water are plentiful. In Bunbury the Corellas have been around for a while, sadly they will be culled because some in the community call them a nuisance.

We need to continually bring an awareness to our world that nature is vital and we are a part of it, not separate. We co-exist, we are interdependent, it is a relationship, and we really need to value that relationship because it is critical to our own survival. We need new eyes to see that the problem is not the Corellas, but the fact that some people have a problem with Corellas.

Corellas swinging 
TV reception blurred
time to read a book

©Paul Cannon

Paul,

pvcann.com

24 Comments

Filed under community, environment, Haiku, life, mindfulness, nature

Compass

via Daily Prompt: Compass

S4300056.jpg

On this particular day we didn’t need a compass as backup, basically we just had to follow the disused railway line (which is a sore point, our state government lost its economic compass and abandoned rural narrow gauge lines in favour of trucking). Once a couple of years back, we lost our way, we had no compass and the map didn’t align with the intermittent trail indicators, we lost thirty minutes in very warm weather, which is critical here. We made it back to the trail and even made up time, but had we gone an hour it would have meant the possibility of abandoning the hike. After that we always double checked we’d packed a compass, and nowadays an emergency locator beacon. The rail line was perfect that day. The compass and map acts the same, it’s a rail or guide to stick by, and takes the guess work out of navigation.

In my experience leaders and governments, corporations and charismatic gurus have lost their compass. I hesitate to say moral compass, because that’s always a matter of experience, culture, age, and expectation. And moral compasses are caught up in that awful legalism of moralising – and a pox on that. No, those we look to have lost their way, and they’ve forgotten the compass that helps guide them to community needs, community dreams, and community wisdom. That compass is our voice, our voice in every form (ecologically speaking), pointing a way.

Paul,

pvcann.com

10 Comments

Filed under community, life, politics