Posts Tagged ‘Commentary’

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Added by GM on March 8, 2013.

Here is an exclusive article written for the Guardian Express by Guest Author Agatha McLeod.

When I was in my first year of high school, Senator Obama was elected president on the basis of his hope-themed campaign. My fellow students and I gathered in a cramped classroom to watch his inauguration speech, and were dazzled by his speaking skills, his earnest values and his black skin. All of the components for a changed America – and a changed world – were there. The optimism in the room was almost physical; it felt like the tide was turning in favor of the people. It was a good feeling. It was hope.

Four years later, in 2012, shortly before President Obama’s re-election campaign, I began an extensive project on ‘third world’ countries for a World Issues course I was enrolled in. I started the project intending to achieve a passing grade, so that I could consequently graduate later that year and move on with my life.

However, the more I explored the reality that is hunger, poverty and slavery overseas, the more I began to feel that hope – the same kind inspired by President Obama’s campaign – wasn’t enough. Hope has done all it can: provided us with a sense of calm in times of turmoil, and beamed a bright light into otherwise dark places. But the truth is, hope leaves us repeating old adages about silver linings and the dawn of a new day. Hope is a good feeling, a familiar feeling.

But hope is not feeding children in Haiti, or allowing children in Uzbekistan an education. Hope is not relieving you and your people – worldwide – of financial stress. Hope gives us optimism but it doesn’t give us a solid answer. As I began to draw connections between our ‘first world’ and ‘third worlds’ overseas, hope became a weak tree branch. Not strong enough to hold onto.

In search of answers, I changed my thesis statement from a summary of overseas poverty to a specific exploration of the effect our North American corporations have on ‘third world’ countries. These are beautiful countries: rich in resources, diverse in culture, and vastly populated. For this reason, it’s difficult to understand why poverty and resorting to slavery is so common in ‘third world’ countries; or what makes them ‘third world’ at all.

Many of these countries are still in ‘development’ because they were loaned aid funds by financial institutions like the World Bank and IMF, on the condition that they privatize their economies and allow Western corporations to reap their natural resources free of charge. As a result, they do not have enough funds to support themselves, but cannot relieve themselves, as a country, of debt to ‘first world’ institutions.

For example, in order to meet export quotas set by tobacco giants in the ‘first world’, child slaves in Malawi, Africa inhale 54 milligrams of tobacco a day, in the course of doing their daily work, and as a result, cannot function properly by the age of 12.

A whopping 43% of the world’s cocoa – the same cocoa in the majority of North American candies – is harvested primarily by youth who don’t know what cocoa is for.

These are but several examples; dramatic statistics of ‘modern slavery’ are widespread, and the root cause of all – indeed, all – of it, is born out of desperation caused debt and greed. It is cheaper and less obvious to its people for a ‘first world’ country to take cookies from the overseas cookie jar.

Children are easier to manipulate. It is calculated and cruel, but easier. Morality is not as profitable.

It is important to note, however, that modern slavery is not limited to overseas, poor countries. It is just as resplendent here, in the so-called luxurious ‘first world’. It might not be as obvious, but it is certainly as tangible. In the developed world, we are not being stereotypically enslaved: being taken from our families or being threatened with physical harm.

In the ‘third worlds’, multinational corporations and private monetary systems are pillaging entire countries, and here, in the ‘first world’, they have boiled us down to individuals and entirely removed our connection with one another, thus instigating financial crises, foreclosures and bankruptcy.

We are all being sold and traded on. We are all being separated from one another. The ten-year-old Ugandan soldier with a machine gun is being fed the same story that appears on all of your red-letter finance statements and legal summons: that we owe; that we must act against our will for the good of the PTW (Powers That Were); that we are all pawns in a corporate game.

My personal turning point – the change from passivity to activity, and the very reason I’m writing this now – came to me in the middle of my high school project. It was the sharp and sudden realization that my world was destroying someone else’s. It was the fact that we are one people, yet entirely estranged by not just by water but also by a thick, slimy layer of greed.

You could say I woke up when I knew I was living in a corporate world. It was the corporations around me, the corporation of Canada that I lived in: multinational monsters reaching their tentacles into the banking and trading systems and wrapping around the throats of innocent beings.

The following fall, my parents, with their finger on the pulse of alternative news, discovered the One People’s Public Trust (OPPT). I was hauled aboard the initiative and exposed to a plethora of information that had never been made obvious to me or anyone else: the truth about the one people’s freedom, the action that was under way, and the [literally] glittering secrets that had been hidden by the Powers That Were (PTW) for so many decades.

I began my own research into OPPT and resonated deeply with it. I knew immediately that I was not experiencing a burp of anarchism, a phase of teenage rebellion against the man. It began to seep into my dreams, my conversations, and the way I perceived the planet, most specifically the connection between the ‘first’ and ‘third’ worlds. There was no turning back.

What speaks to me the most about OPPT is that at its very core, it is a tool designed to free humanity from slavery. Whether it is involuntary here or blatantly obvious over there, it is slavery nonetheless. However, OPPT succeeds in enabling all of us – the one people, whether you are a debt-ridden white man in New York or a tobacco plantation slave in Malawi – to live by our own free will. It is in the process of giving us back what we deserve, and letting us – all of us – to live comfortably with enough resources.

OPPT gives me the binoculars to see a planet that is not divided by which countries have ‘developed’ and which haven’t. It lets me see the amount of production and innovation that will be born out of a common sense of human comfort and peace; whole continents of human ingenuity that has not been able to flourish yet.

It is no longer about waiting and hoping.

OPPT is about taking action, and trusting that the change that is imminent – worldwide.

Guest Author Agatha McLeod is a 19-year-old Canadian College student. She has been exploring and working with OPPT since early this year. She is especially focused on making a connection between OPPT, a youth audience and developing nations overseas.

Please watch the video which explains in more detail the plight and slave techniques perpetrated on children in 3rd world countries.  JUMP TO THE GUARDIAN EXPRESS TO VIEW VIDEO –>