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The w(r)eek of Live 8 returns..

A similar event to the ¨Live 8¨ concert which took place in the run-up to the G8 in 2005 is to take place in Rostock on Thursday 7th June 2007. Undoubtedly the message will be the same: ¨wearing a white arm band and attending a rock concert will liberate the third world from poverty as well as making you feel good about yourself¨.
According to the this new wave of propaganda, all that is needed to change the world is to ¨persuade¨ those in power to make amends. And all despite the incontrovertible evidence that the G8 have systematically engineered and forced poverty increasing policies on third world countries for years through illegitimate and unaccountable organisations. The World Bank, IMF, and WTO are essentially an international cartel of the super-rich. They exploit cheap labour and plunder natural resources through collectively ¨negotiating¨ weak labour rights, low corporation tax, prohibiting protectionist trade policies, and forcing profiteering of life sustaining public utilities in return for ¨investment¨. The end result is the enormous increase in disparity of wealth that has been seen over the past 30 years as the elite gained their economic strangle-hold on poor nations. Wealth and economic control has been transferred from the poor and dispossessed to the richest people on earth.

¨Live 8¨ was organised by groups and individuals with close ties to the Labour government, and was officially backed by the government itself. Celebrities Bono and Bob Geldoff, both close friends of Tony Blair were the ¨friendly faces¨ of the event to give it credibility with the people. Evidence of the event being a politically sinister plot grew as the Labour government closely aligned itself with the campaign; Tony Blair fielded questions on MTV appearing sympathetic to world poverty without his complicity in engineering such policies being challenged. Celebrities, record companies, and multi-national corporation sponsors cashed in on people´s good-will, with record sale profits skyrocketing for the Live 8 performers, an irrelevant fraction of which was donated to philanthropic causes. Live 8 won the approval of media mogul Rupert Murdoch who has close connections with the organisers and Tony Blair, and whose far-right tabloid newspaper ¨the Sun¨ championed the ¨Live 8¨ event. Ultimately, the potential for a strong anti-globalisation movement was hijacked, co-opted, and subdued by an alliance of elite individuals and corporations supported by the mainstream media.

The Rostock ¨Music and Messages¨ concert on Thursday aims to ¨call on the rich industrialised nations for more political engagement for development¨. Bono will be in attendance and is quoted as saying ¨if the G8 heads think that they can ignore this campaign, they are making a very big mistake.” An odd comment to make given that he knows they already have. At Gleneagles much was made of the cancellation of third world debt and more aid to Africa. They have seriously failed to meet even these objectives, despite being a smokescreen to disguise their recalcitrance in removing forced Neo-liberal economic controls on poor nations. Africa is denied access to trade in Western markets while the richest have free rein of theirs. Historically, every rich economy in the world protected it´s new industries. This is by far the largest piece of the pie in terms of reducing poverty and relinquishing control of wealth which rightly belongs to the poorest, not the richest. There is a reason for all of this scheming, the big lie goes as follows: capitalism and trade will lift the poor out of poverty. Every time I hear this I remember a date, April 15th. This is the day when our country has used up its share of the earth´s resources for the year. For the poor to have a lifestyle like ours we would need five planet earths of resources. They are kept poor so we can be rich. Once again we are seeing the complex web of machinations of the elite obscured and reduced to one simple sound byte: ¨poverty reduction¨, as if it were a natural occurrence, it´s causes not deeply rooted in capitalist exploitation.

Attending the Rostock ¨resist the g8¨ concert and protest on Saturday 2nd June one thing was poignant, right now in Germany the anti-globalisation movement appears united. This was a mainstream concert attended by 80,000 people. When lines of riot police and water cannon trucks were sent barging into the crowd at the concert, the verdict was unanimous, people at the concert linked arms to block the police from entering further and shouted and chanted for them to leave. Some of
the more recalcitrant were tear-gassed and pepper-sprayed, to any onlooker it was easy to see which side the violence was coming from, whatever the mainstream media may report.

There is a threat: since Gleneagles a new pattern has emerged, this is the elite´s new propaganda assault, to misguide people to the true causes of poverty and propagating false promises of poverty reduction. Historically, all civil rights and freedoms have been won through mobilising and empowering disenfranchised people, not by subserviently asking for change. It has happened in the UK and it could happen in Germany, or anywhere else. This new wave of propaganda cannot go unchallenged..