Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Monkey us

It rained finally here in Gurgaon. Obviously we all are delighted in this drought stricken desert of a city. But before you can race down your balcony to enjoy that rain, usually you are greeted with a sight of water logged streets on which cars thunder past hapless pedestrians/ cyclists who get their clothes soiled with the holy water splashed by the fast SUV tyres.
And car after car, keeps on doing the same thing. No one slows down to perhaps not be as big a dick and not splash dirty water on pedestrians. Perhaps, the bad weather is affecting the driver's visibility and he/she is so intent on watching the road that they don't notice humans by the side. Perhaps, they are racing to some safe haven away from the evil corrosive rain. Perhaps, they are submerged in self pity - 'why are these idiots clogging the road, don't they know how precious my time is?'. 

I was wondering, why do we become such assholes at times?  Well, to be honest, i might have done something similar a few times myself. Perhaps, its just that we can't be aware about others all the time. and then i read a Cracked article which talks about something similar.
Well, the real paper from which this article is inspired is this one, http://www.liv.ac.uk/researchintelligence/issue17/brainteaser.html
It turns out, we humans are monkeys after all. And apparently our top limit of people who we can care about is about 150 people. 
we now have hundreds of 'friends' on social networks with different kind of engagements, we have different contexts in which we interact with different people (work, pleasure, social groups, neighbours, etc)... This is what Zengotita sort of premised his work on, and what Mclluhan took further when he talked about media being extension of our being and 'numbing' of our senses & thinning of consciousness. And this is a huge cost that we pay.. 

I would like to talk of one particular effect.
Read this. http://www.dnaindia.com/analysis/column_can-india-inc-face-the-truth-about-the-manesar-violence_1721167-all Its worth the time. Its an article about the recent violence at the MSIL factory in Gurgaon. Contrast that to the reports being printed in Economic Times, the most influential business daily of India. ET is constantly talking about the bad 'image' this incident projects, or about the possible involvement of 'red hand'. One would expect a business daily to be rational at least if not unbiased. There is hardly any coverage about the worker's point of view.

So what I am saying is, essentially, the large scale of corporates and the medias is making them into un-empathetic baboons. They look at workers unrest as a 'law and order' issue and not as something symptomatic of a deeper malaise of their doing.
(Image by  SD Dirk on Flickr )

So until these baboons actually take cognizance of the world that they are creating, they are bound to face the consequence in one way or another. For a nation of large labor class with socialist moorings, do corporates really think that they can unabashedly chase viral-growth like rates of profits at the cost of the humanity?

The scales is what has alienated people from people. The scale is what is allowing ET to consistently lobby for the benefit of the creamy layer consistently. The scale is what is driving discontent as rich get richer and yet find their growth not enough. Its the scales that makes bystanders out of masses who witness the stellar rise of a few, and then are asked to conform without being given a share of the riches. Its the scales that allow for indoctrination of young ones through schooling systems where classes are still segregated and where cartoons that question are banned.

Its only a matter of time, when the structural violence perpetrated by the capital class is met with physical violence of the masses. The result will be chaotic reorientation of scales.

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