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‘Globalization’ is a misused term.

16 February, 2017

The Editor,  The Listener,  letters@listener.co.nz,  Auckland

Dear Editor:

The term ‘globalization’ has been a misused, even cynically used, term since the Sixties when it was proposed as a move away from ‘nationalism’ (read ‘colonialism’) which had produced two world wars in the first half of the 20th century.  But what was really meant, and what has actually happened, was that capital (money) controlled by giant ‘global’ banks and corporations would be freed up, always with the intention of benefiting those banks and corporations through the means of an anachronistic GDP based ‘economic growth’.  Labour would not be freed up and a race to the bottom for wages and conditions would occur thus maximizing corporate profits.

So ‘globalization’ was never intended to benefit people actually living in their own land, and certainly not those who have been forced out of it. Those who complain about refugees and other immigrants bringing alien cultural ideas and practices, trying to incriminate ‘globalization’ (e.g. LePen in France, Hansen in Australia) have lost touch with ‘neither master nor slave’ and turned upon themselves to become both torturer and victim.

Instead, a true ‘localized’ culture will need to look into the economies of their own cultures to see how they have treated the land, resources and people where they are, as well as their impact on global conditions (climate change). In most cases they will see their tenure has been generally exploitative, rather than respectful of the local.  Yes, exploitation has been personified by corporate dominance in their ‘globalized’ world, but that is more an extension of the exploitation in the local.

Only when peoples and cultures become honest dwellers in their own land can a respect for the planet be generated. Would the term ‘globalization’ survive that?

Sincerely,

Richard Keller

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