Saturday, December 15, 2007

All about stuff. by Annie Leonard

This is a very well put together animated documentary about consumerism and sustainability. It has really made me think about my own life and what a true consumer I have become. It is a timely message too when we are entering the time of the year when consumerism reaches its zenith.

This video is quite large and can take a long time to load. If you have trouble you can follow this link and open it in different chapters


Leigh Blackall said...

Hi Carolyn, thanks for posting about it. I can see by Sarah's post that there can be mixed feelings in the midwives about such a message. I did think that when the movie drew focus on the link between breast feeding, the food chain, and the toxic chemicals we are pouring into that food chain, that midwives and anyone else with maternal instincts might rise up with a bit more passion...

Now what I'm more interested in is the mixed reactions from this film, and whether or not it might turn just as many people off than it does on... what do you think? It didn't seem to stimulate you to thinking about the links that midwifery, birth, and child raring have to the issues of sustainability.. apart from Christmas shopping for the kids maybe :)

Carolyn McIntosh said...

Thanks for your comment Leigh. I think that you will find that midwives are as individual as all other members of society. It is very hard to find a consistent view across the board on any particular issue. That is why it is really important that you select your midwife carefully, try to fine the best match for you and your feelings about childbirth. Someone that you feel can provide the care and support your partner and you will need.

All of the postings I have made subsequent to posting this video (up to and including the Sarah Buckley one) have been influenced by this and are in some response to it.

I have no idea whether this film will turn some people off the issue of sustainability. It certainly made me feel quite motivated. I really like the way that Annie has delivered this message. She really gets the message across that to continue as we are is not sustainable. I felt the message was also positive. That we can change, all is not lost, it is not hopeless. But we have to do it now.

I think I have addressed the issues I felt were important for midwifery in my subsequent postings. things we can do something about now. The issue of toxins in the human body is very real. We all need to try to reduce our exposure. Not only do these toxins pass through into breast milk, but just as concerning, perhaps even more concerning, is that they also cross the placenta and our babies are exposed from conception. Perhaps even before that as I believe that sperm are also affected by toxins.

This is a much bigger problem. As midwives we can have little direct influence other than promoting healthy diet and informing women of the dangers of exposure to chemicals. For example part of the nesting instinct encourages women to start renovating and decorating when they are pregnant but exposure to paint fumes is potentially hazardous and we need to tell women about this. As Annie pointed out, we do know that toxins pas into breast milk. Reducing exposure to to the source of toxins is therefore important. Despite this breast milk is still the best food for human babies. In our modern world it is very hard to avoid exposure to toxic chemicals but we can be aware and reduce it wherever possible.

So I think I disagree with you. This video did stimulate me to think about many issues other than just Christmas shopping, I am sorry that you did not pick up on that.

Leigh Blackall said...

Many thanks Carolyn, I'm glad you disagree :) and I have seen your others posts since commenting here.. There are a few people at the polytech who would like to organise a sustainability film night and compliment it with forums, other events and short courses. Critics of the idea say the film is sensationalist, emotive and in some instances not true, and so would discredit the poly. I dunno what to say to that, and so am feeling people out to see what the responses are. So far, mostly positive :) Like you, I see it as an important film for its motivational power, and for sparking discussion, debate and maybe even action. So thanks for teh responses, and keep us posted on what you do. I really enjoyed your post that included a pattern for woolen over nappies. My mum spins and knits, she probably already knows this, but then, there's a chance she doesn't - so I forwarded it on. If Sunshine and I ever have a baby, I'm looking forward to highly felted woolen over nappies for cold damp Dunedin.

Carolyn McIntosh said...

Glad you appreciated the pattern. Good to see you are getting ready early. Your Mum was probably quite excited when you sent it to her, maybe looking for some hidden meaning.

Regarding critics of the film. What is the 'truth' and whose truth is it. So many people say they don't believe in climate change etc, despite all the evidence we can see with our eyes. It all depends on interpretation of evidence and drawing conclusions from this. Different people will draw different conclusions. So maybe we have a problem and maybe we don't, maybe we can influence our future and maybe we can't. What have we got to lose by trying?

If we do make changes and do manage to reduce our impact on the planet is this not positive regardless of how we interpret the evidence? It seems to me that the only potential losers are the big multinational corporations, which is probably where most of the denial of our culpability originates. They will just have to adapt and change too.

Leigh Blackall said...

Well put Carolyn. Thanks :) and no, no hidden meaning there yet :)

Anonymous said...

This an absolute FRAUD propagated by a bunch of commie duchebags. "the job of the government is to take care of people"??? What bullsh!t. And there's more, "the US military accounts for 50% of the federal budget" Yeah right. You liers and fraudsters conveniently take out all sorts of entitlement programs like medicare, medicaid, etc. in coming to this false calculation. The REAL percentage of military spending is more like about 20%. Be advised ladies, that the truth of your fraudulent propaganda is coming out. You are being exposed and given you are stuffing this quackery down the throats of innocent kids, could cause someone to press for charges against you. You are all thoroughly disgusting. There are plenty of us ready and willing to challenge you traitors.

Leigh Blackall said...

what a great comment! :) hope you'll leave it right here Carolyn. Its like crazy scribbles on the toilet walls of some southern state in the US. Gives me a smile when I picture the dude with his hat and belt, and funny little dangely thing in place of a tie. Gives me a chill when I imagine a mass murdering school kid with a bag full of autos, or the CIA equivalent.

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