I haven’t posted a show in two months. I have some good reasons for that. For one thing I’ve been working hard and enjoying my new day job. I’ve also been spending time working on another new project http://threegratitudes.ninja-radio.com/. Every day I think of three things in my life to be grateful for and share them on the site. You would think that coming up with three things to be thankful for every day would be dead easy. It’s not. There is so much tragedy and negative things happening in the world and in my life every day, that to take delight, pleasure and gratitude in small and simple things around me can be tricky. Especially on a day to day basis when much of our days also take the form of eat, work, sleep, repeat. But I am persevering in this. I have seven months to go and then I’ll end the project. Until then, you can join me if you want in the project in various ways. You can email me at email@example.com with your gratitudes or comment on the site. Either way your gratitudes will make it to the project.
A New Concept in Fast Food (Photo by Ninja)
This month Special K and I took our friends Dragon and Fly to New York. Fly had never been there and it had been many years since Dragon had. In today’s segment, we visit an interesting restaurant for breakfast called 4Food – the purpose of which is to de-junk fast food. We run into many French tourists. The aim that day was to visit to Ground Zero the day after Obama visited on May 5, 2011. Surprisingly we were stopped by a journalist who interviewed us for Swiss Public Radio about 9/11. Bit of a switch for Ninja. We also find out that there is a huge French community in New York. We talk about the movie Winter’s Bone and a class of humanity that are sometimes, but not often, represented in movies. Other movies discussed: Pulp Fiction, Deliverance, The Fly. Food mentioned: Pressed rice patties. Television Shows referred to: Modern Family. Broadcasters mentioned: Swiss Public Radio, The CBC.
Zeitgeist is a German word that means the general intellectual, moral, and cultural climate of an era according to the Merriam-Webster. It’s the title of a documentary that you can find at http://zeitgeistmovie.com/. It was produced by Peter Joseph and won an Activist Film award. Its premise could be controversial: That our lives our nothing more than fuel cells for a few lucky powerful people. Somewhat like the matrix except there is no need for a red pill or a blue pill. The produce of our toil feeds the few wealthy and powerful while we ask for nothing more than beer, medications, mindless televison and films, Second Life and other web 2.0 false realities.
He builds his case by showing us first that Jesus never existed. Religion is a tool, he suggests, to keep us under control. God is a myth that is so convincing that we are unable to question it. Next, he shows how 9/11 must have been an inside job. Furthermore, he asserts, no buildings can fall in such a controlled fashion unless they have been preloaded with explosives that result in such a perfect demolition. Finally and this is where for me the arguments become the most obscure: our money has no meaning and no value except what the one central bank declares it has. The rise and fall of the markets and my spending power is little more than at the whim of the controllers of the bank whose own money is always protected. They will get into the market and out of it before I feel its effect.
One nice touch in this movie are some still brilliant scenes from Network (1976) where Peter Finch admonishes our attachment to mindless entertainment in the form of television. The scenes from Network were actually the more powerful message for me. What the newscaster says is still relevant today. But did Zeitgeist itself shock me? No. Did it disturb me? Absolutely. Because at the core of its message I think is an invitation to question basic assumptions of what my life in society really means and to whom it benefits and in what ways. From that point of view I loved the movie. As long as you keep an open mind and do not merely open your mouth like a bird to receive it as some kind of false nourishment, it can be thought provoking and serve to spur on any personal inquiry into these matters that you may have been reluctant to explore.