Saturday, 29 November 2008

Banging pots and pans

I turned on the TV last night while eating my dinner, and caught some images of a cacerolazo taking place in some region of this enormous country, where they're protesting about a lack of power and water. A cacerolazo is the traditional Argentine way to protest: you get a pot or pan of some sort from your kitchen, together with a wooden spoon or something else with which you can beat out your protest rhythm in the street. Anyway, that's what's going on in some part of Argentina. I may be safe from such governmental neglect, as I live in a posh part of the important capital, but who knows?

It appears my slightly deranged and early-rising landlady (she pretty much stages a cacerolazo of her own every morning...) didn't spend the night at the flat last night, and this enabled me to have an almighty sleep, which saw me completely out for the count until almost 11am. Within ten minutes of getting my senses in order, I'd been greeted with the news that, outside of Argentina, there was even more unrest than a bunch of housewives in the street.

The siege in Mumbai is fortunately over now, but that could be the beginning of a new wave of something bad. Thailand's in a mess, and the tourists are stranded. I have two friends over there at the moment, as it goes. One of them will be "celebrating" his birthday tomorrow. Fun days... And, after reading so much about how nobody's shopping in the States any more, a Wal-Mart employee got killed in a stampede of shoppers, who then almost started another riot when they were told that the store would have to be closed because of the death. They needed those cut-price plasma screens.

I mean, that last story is just too much to take. This economy that we've created that can only function if people continue to buy stuff they don't even need is a complete and utter joke. Why can't a human stampede kill off a few of the investment bankers, advertising gurus and sensationalist journalists that are fueling the lunacy?

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