Humans, the Economy and a Whole Lot of Inquiring

From Multi-billion dollar corporations to your neighbour’s garage sale, the Earth’s economy is all around us. From the chair you sit in, the energy that powers your computer, and the clothes you wear are all tethered to the web that is the global economy that runs the world as we know it.

But the questions must be begged, What even is economy? Where did it come from? Is it a good thing? Why should I care? Yep, the economy is a hot-mess but it’s ours, and there happens to be a great deal going in with it. So  grab your thinking caps and get your eyes massaged because you’re about to learn!

Just a fair warning, I won’t be delving too much into the details and numbers of economics but  rather its effects on humanity. So not so much the(in my opinion) dry history of the economy, but more so the tasty-brain food of interest!

_______________________________________________________________________________________

So what does the word “Economy” really mean? 

There are several definitions, but this one by Dictionary.com  sums up the idea pretty well.

The management of the resources of a community, country, etc.,especially with a view to its productivity.”[1]

So essentially to trade and manage the stuff you have. Be it in your family, city, area, planet, etc. and how to make more!
__________________________________________________________

Where did come from?

So where did it all begin? Where did such a HUGE system come from?

Well, it’s turns out to be a much broader question than one might think.

The economy has always been around. From the moment a humans traded a rock for a stick was the true birth of economy. Trading is where it all began.

The concept of trading a rock for a stick of course became much bigger as time progressed. Dawning civilizations from 5000 BCE to 1000 CD such as Egypt, Ancient Greece, Ancient Rome, Persia, and Ancient China[2][3] is where the world trade really began with products such as metals, jewels, spices, and so on. As you could imagine the rare and useful products are always wanted, really the idea of supply-and-demand. The silk road, a series of routes that connected these large civilizations during 200 CE[4] was also a huge economic development, that really encouraged world trade.

This video goes pretty in-depth into the history of the silk road.

_______________________________________________________________________________________

Is it a good thing or bad?

To me, there’s a good and bad side to everything. But the economy(one that focuses on maximum profit that is) may be my only exception.

Of course one can pick and choose everything debatable wrong/right with the economy but I’ll be talking about two things in general. So here’s number one to kick it off.

1: It’s hurting our Planet

Yep, we’re chopping down trees, digging up land, and hunting animals. All to get that wonderful money. Take a look at this video to see how harvesting oil impacts the environment.

The economy hurts the Earth but people still need to pay their bills. It doesn’t just have negative impacts on the dirt under our feet but also people too. Number two shows a reason why.

2: It encourages privilege of placement

And what do I mean by “Privilege of placement”?

In the view of economic wealth, the privilege(pretty much luck) of being born in a country that simply has more. More money, food, more advanced technology, more education, and of course more excess.

excess-sugar-intake

It’s quite stunning. In terms of excess, 30% of the US food, approximately 48 billion worth is simply thrown away. Every single year. Don’t think Canada is any better either. On average, A single family living in Toronto waste about 275 kg(606 lbs) of food annually. While the US average is only about 215 kg(474 lbs) annually[5].

If I were a starving individual in an undeveloped country I wouldn’t dream of throwing away 600 pounds worth of food. Though every little bit of food you and I don’t eat isn’t helping improve any statistics.

Amazingly, with all this excess there’s still starvation in Canada. All thanks to your friendly neighbourhood economy.

Of course the economy also gives the world the opportunity to mass produce things like phones, computers, and other technologies. These technologies in turn make the world a smaller place by being able to talk people across the planet within milliseconds by the use of phones and the internet. And also makes things like travel a heck of a lot easier with cars, planes, and of course segways being able to transport people and goods in no time at all.

Unfortunately there is a cost to this technology. Take coltan for instance.

Coltan(short for columbite-tantalite) is an alloy used in a myriad of devices from laptops to jet engines. This alloy is found almost exclusively in the country of Republic of the Congo. In short, people in the Congo need money. Coltan is worth a lot of money. People in the Congo fight for the land Coltan is located. Like war fight[6]. Similar to blood diamonds in Africa. Blood was shed to get this stuff to make your phones and laptops.

_______________________________________________________________________________________

Why Should I care?

Of course morally this is an issue, people are dying for the things you use to watch YouTube on. Also the only home we have is consideration too, planet Earth that is. Oh and the corporations with all the money control 90% of what we watch, read, and listen to[7] . But really, as a person reading text behind a screen what does it matter?

Even as the author of this post I don’t even care about this economics stuff much myself.

Yep. You know why? Things change. The worse things are the faster things change. Not too long ago most of the world didn’t consider women equal. North America didn’t treat black people equal. There was a time when Germany and Russia slaughtered millions of people.

So you truly don’t need to care. Do what you believe is right. Things change. Change is good!

A man by the name of Paul Hawken has observed what he calls the “unnamed revolution”. This movement is a global scale social, political, and environmental movement that is going on as we speak! The video below goes into more detail about this subject.

So you can embrace, ignore, or deny what’s happening around us but change is always going on. However this “unnamed revolution looks like a pretty good thing to me!

_______________________________________________________________________________________

To sum up

The economy is quite the system. It’s as old as you could imagine but it still hold many flaws. The economy has so much and so little to give for those who maintain it and is more a little awkward to handle. However humans are nothing if not persistent. Well learn to streamline the economy in a way that both benefits people and the planet it runs on. Indeed, the economy is a hot-mess but it’s ours. And there happens to be a great deal going on with it.

_______________________________________________________________________________________

The After-Party

Welcome! So what did ya think of this here blog? I invite you to stay and chat. Chips and pop are in the corner if you’d like some and the bathroom is down the hall. If you’re staying I’ve got some interesting questions for you while you’re here. I’ve got about  three paragraphs worth of unused stuff. So you know I‘ll have be meaty questions to talk about. No need to answer them all either(or any of them for that matter). Aint no body got time for that! So without further ado, what in the name of all that is arguably good do you think?

First world countries such as Canada, US,  Australia,  Japan, and UK  are very well developed . Do they deserve it? As stated previously, there is still starvation in these countries. Should children be the ones starving just because their families can’t afford it? Should honest adults also starve simply because they can’t afford food?

Not interested? Try these questions.

Do you think this economic system will last? Do you think mankind will deplete all the fossil fuels that power our cars and factories until it runs out? Why or why not?

Who do you believe runs the economy? Is it you the consumer, the investors and entrepreneurs or the governments of the world? Is it all three, one or two or something else? Do you think they share equal roles? How much do you think morals affect one(or more) of these groups economic decisions?

Could the creation of a global economy have ever been avoided? Why do you think so? Could humans thrive in technological advances without an economy?

Do you care about the economy? Put your self in the shoes of someone working in a sweatshop or forced into child labour. If given the choice, would you still like to be underpaid and overworked in horrible conditions to keep the global economy going?

_______________________________________________________________________________________

Final Remarks

So thanks for reading. Whether you were forced to read or you’re just a passerby I hope it gave you a full serving of brain food and new perspectives to consider. If you’re still hungry I also recommend checking out our learning community on my classroom’s website. It loaded with blogs that have fresh opinions and new ideas that’ll really get your brain thinking. Click a name and find out! I’ll leave this fine quote from a fellow named Adam Smith to let you know one way I think the economy could be changed. I’ll leave it up to you to ask me how I feel about the rest!

Adam Smith

Smith, Adam, and Knud Haakonssen. The Theory Of Moral Sentiments. Cambridge, U.K.: Cambridge University Press, 2002. Print.

References

[1] Dictionary.com,. ‘The Definition Of Economy’. N.p., 2015. Web. 22 May 2015.

[2] Highered.mheducation.com,. ‘Beginnings And Early Civilizations (10,000–1000 BCE)’. N.p., 2015. Web. 21 May 2015.

[3] Deering, Mary. ‘Persian Empire: History, Culture & Timeline | Study.Com’. Study.com. N.p., 2015. Web. 21 May 2015.

[4] Travelchinaguide.com,. ‘History Of China Silk Road: Development, Significance, Travelers’. N.p., 2015. Web. 21 May 2015.

[5] David Suzuki Foundation,. ‘Help End Food Waste’. N.p., 2015. Web. 25 May 2015.

[6] Cox, Stan. ‘War, Murder, Rape… All For Your Cell Phone’. Alternet. N.p., 2006. Web. 27 May 2015.

[7] Lutz, Ashley. ‘These 6 Corporations Control 90% Of The Media In America’. Business Insider. N.p., 2012. Web. 28 May 2015. 

Images

Chalkboard Economy. 2015. Web. 28 May 2015.

Question Mark. 2015. Web. 28 May 2015.

Lots Of Food. 2015. Web. 28 May 2015.

Coltan Rock. 2015. Web. 28 May 2015.

The Spectator,. Feigning Surprise At A Surprise Party. 2015. Web. 28 May 2015.

Meditation Exercise #1

bigstock-summer-landscape-with-green-gr-15348293

I felt I need some original blog posts, and this popped into my head!

The goal of these little tidbits are to provide in descriptive and vivid scenes(following no particular structure) that are meant to relax and stretch one’s imagination. The more visualization the better! Anyways, now to the story! read or listen to your heart’s content!

Of course I’ll be providing the(unrefined) audio for this exercise! If your listening to the audio, I recommend closing your eyes, relaxing, and listening.

Apologies for the annoying static in the background, my iPad doesn’t really record the best audio…. I’ll try to improve my audio recordings with some better tech in the future. I’ll be sure to guide the end by a little breathing to to end off the recording next time.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Romeo and Juliet Act 1, Scene 4-5 Inquiry Questions

1. By Benvolio’s words in the play, this is a feast and/or a masquerade ball that the Capulets are hosting. The dead giveaway was when Romeo and co. wore masks before entering the party.
But in that crystal scales let there be weighed
Your lady’s love against some other maid
That I will show you shining at the feast,
And she shall scant show well that now shows best.
(I:III:103-106)
2. Pretty much Mercutio is suggesting to Romeo that he should cure his love-sickness by finding love, in every “form” of it. Mercutio was using innuendo when talking about being “rough” with love. To me, this interprets Mercutio as being a very “excited” person: he’s spontaneous to his emotions as well as his desires. Romeo on the other hand is just a heartbroken teenager who doesn’t necessarily have the same motives as Mercutio. Today, this conversation would translate to Mercutio saying something along the line of “stop being a drag, cheer up. There are so many fine ladies just begging to be swept away       ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°).” with all of Mercutio’s infinite love advice. All the while Romeo would be moaning and groaning about his only passion in life being unobtainable, like he already does in the play!
3. I’ll get back to you on that :/
4. Romeo plays Juliet like a violin. However, that doesn’t mean his love isn’t sincere. Take the whole sonnet of Romeo and Juliet of Act I: Scene V: Lines 104-117. The whole conversation between Romeo and Juliet is a love poem; the love they share is true, this is what’s meant by the sharing of the sonnet.
If I profane with my unworthiest hand
This holy shrine, the gentle sin is this:
My lips, two blushing pilgrims, ready stand
To smooth that rough touch with a tender kiss.
Good pilgrim, you do wrong your hand too much,
Which mannerly devotion shows in this;
For saints have hands that pilgrims’ hands do touch,
And palm to palm is holy palmers’ kiss.
Have not saints lips, and holy palmers too?
Ay, pilgrim, lips that they must use in prayer.
O, then, dear saint, let lips do what hands do;
They pray — grant thou, lest faith turn to despair.
Saints do not move, though grant for prayers’ sake.
Then move not, while my prayer’s effect I take.
(I:V:104-117)
5. Lord Capulet butchered Tybalt’s ability to do anything about Romeo being at the feast. Lord Capulet is enjoying the party, and he also doesn’t want to attract the attention, for the fear of Prince’s threat of death of those who cause scenes. And so Lord Capulet orders Tybalt to back off and cease his stupidity.
Go to, go to.
You are a saucy boy. Is ’t so, indeed?
This trick may chance to scathe you, I know what.
You must contrary me. Marry, ’tis time.—
Well said, my hearts!—You are a princox, go.
Be quiet, or—More light, more light!—For shame!
I’ll make you quiet.—What, cheerly, my hearts!
(I:V:93-99)
This line captures all that I said about Lord Capulet. He scalds Tybalt while also talking to guests and serving men/women to go about and enjoy the party.

Romeo and Juliet News Report

Prince’s Army Seeks Information on Wandering Weeper

forest_never_sleeps_by_zalas

Son of the head of the house of Montagues roams across city of Verona

In Verona, Italy Romeo, son of Lord Montague, head of the house of Montague wanders the forests of near Verona during the weekend between July 13 and 14.

Multiple citizens of Verona have reported Romeo walking whilst moaning before sunrise of the past days, avoiding communication with anyone that approaches Romeo.

Benvolio, kinsman to the Montagues says, “Towards him I made, but he was ‘ware of me and stole into the covert of the wood.”(1, 1, 125-126)

Family of Romeo worry’s for his current state, Lord Montague, Father of Romeo and head of the house of the Montagues states, “Away from the light home steals my heavy son and private in his chambers pens himself, shuts up his windows, locks fair daylight out, and makes himself and artificial night.(1, 1, 140-144)

Paris, the Prince’s kinsman of Verona seeks information of the wandering weeper, any information on the weeper is wanted by the royal army of Verona.

 

 

Romeo & Juliet: Céline Dion or Huey Lewis?

 Monstrocity

Two lovers separated by their families differences, their love forsaken by their parents. Both Romeo and Juliet long to be with each other, but circumstances faced between the pair make being with each other a difficult endeavour.

“Power of Love” performed by both Huey Lewis and Céline Dion both portrayed the essence of love. In addition both also represented Romeo and Juliet’s relationship and the circumstances faced, in a different ways. With that in mind, I believe both songs depict the love of this tragic pair well, in their own right.

Comparing the two, the melody of Céline’s version is much slower and is closer to the melancholy/serious mood of Romeo and Juliet’s Tragedy. Personally I find it’s is hard to think of tragedy while listen to Huey Lewis’ happy and upbeat interpretation of the song. Of course the rhythm isn’t the only thing to consider.

Lyrically, the words of each song express different meaning of love, both relating to Romeo and Juliet’s romance in different ways. Generally speaking Huey Lewis’ version illustrates love’s qualities and what love makes people do, in an unspecified way. This can clearly be seen in the lyrics, especially the third chorus:

“It don’t take money and it don’t take fame
don’t need no credit card to ride this train
Tougher than diamonds and stronger than steel”

Talking about love in general, the line “tougher than diamonds and stronger than steel” depicts Romeo and Juliet love very well, again referring to the end of the play where both Romeo and Juliet end their love to be with each other.

Now Céline’s “Power of Love” is much more specific, expressing the deep emotions for a single other, the chorus does well to describe this:

“‘Cause I am your lady
And you are my man
Whenever you reach for me
I’ll do all that I can “

This theme in the song caters much more towards the love relationship of Romeo and Juliet, describing the devotion to each other. Again referring to the ending scenes of the performance, where both Romeo and Juliet quite literally “devote” their lives to each other. Comparably, the devotion expressed in Ms. Dion’s song better portrays Romeo and Juliet’s passion.

To conclude, both songs reflect on the love shard between Romeo and Juliet, depicting love as a force that bonded the lovers together. While Huey Lewis’ version displayed in general terms the force of love in general, Céline’s describe a much more intimate relationship that was very comparable to Romeo and Juliet. While both songs tell stories of love, Céline Dion’s “Power of Love ” followed Romeo and Juliet’s story just a little bit closer.

To see the original question, visit here: http://mrpuley.ca/2015/03/03/rj-act-i-song-analysis/

The Perspective of Juliet in the First Person.

How my loved ones burden me. To lead me to a husband as fine as Paris is a fine gesture, but I cannot give my feelings to him all so soon. Oh yes I am aware of his wealth and how my family will greatly benefit, however my love for him his unknown. Am I destined for this Paris? Will my heart discern him my lover and a man of power? Or perhaps just the latter. Such stress for this banquet has lingered in my heart, why does fear plague me so? Why can’t I alone decide who I love or not? No reason to dwell on this subject now, this party will decide my feelings. I can only hope it will end my worry, and my heart chooses right.

Image

Give From The Heart, Not The Store.

Malls are over-crowded, roads are filled to the brim, your friends and family are acting especially suspicious, and you haven’t even begun to think of what to give. The gift giving season can be a rough time, filled with stresses and strains to make mind race. But why do some feel this way? Why are days such as Christmas, Valentine’s day, or even Father’s or Mother’s day filled with so much tension? Why is the act of giving so stressful? With these questions in mind, I will delve into the problems with gift giving, and what I feel should be done.

Stop giving gifts.

Yep, just stop giving gifts. More specifically, stop giving gifts on holidays.

Am I saying stop celebrating holidays or giving gifts in general? No, not at all. All that I’m trying to communicate is that give gifts all you want but never feel pressured to give something to someone simply because it’s Christmas, Valentine’s day, or any holiday. Don’t let the gift you gave them show your appreciation of another, let your act of getting it and thinking of them represent your feelings of them. How does one show their love/appreciation to another? By showing them, be it a letter, something crafted by hand, or a poem, these are all ways to show that you care about them and that’s a truly wonderful thing. So why do so many have stresses about the gift giving holidays?

I feel It’s because we have holidays.

For example, you forgot it was your friend’s birthday and you’re wanting to get them a gift, but oh fiddle sticks you have no idea what to get them. So you go to the nearest dollar store and get them a card, sign it and throw a 20 dollar bill into it, done. You give it to them and they say thanks. Well, made it until next year right? In this scenario, the act of giving a token of appreciation has become business more than anything.

I find many people show their appreciation through material things, an iPhone, candy, clothing, and especially money. These things really can show your gratitude to another but when you get someone a gift for the sake of it being Christmas, for the sake of being your friend’s birthday, for the sake of someone’s graduation, where’s the emotion? Don’t you think saying “I’m proud of you” or “I think you’re a great person” or even the daring “I love you” is enough of a gift?

How does it feel when someone takes the moment to honestly say this to you?

It’s the pressure of getting someone a gift on holidays, to prove that your care. That’s what I mean when I say people stress because we have holidays. I feel that you should be able to give a gift whenever you feel like it, not give gifts on days everyone just agreed upon, to give as you please when it means something special.