I promise I won’t ever do a story on Brad Pitt’s love life, but I can’t help myself about Sting. Graeme Wood, filling in for Andrew Sullivan on The Daily Dish wrote about Sting’s taking two million bucks to play a concert for Gulnara Karimova, daughter of brutal Uzbeck kleptocrat Islam Karimov.
Barbara says there are a lot more rich conservatives creating mischief than rich liberals, and that's probably true. Sting says that cultural boycotts are a bad idea, and probably believes that he could squeeze a few people (and the Aral Sea) out from under the iron boot heel of oppression by modeling a peaceful and ecologically-aware attitude for the self-deluded Karimovs.
It reminds me of a bumper sticker I gripe about around town now and again: “There is no way to peace. Peace is the way.” That reminds me of the ancient Coca Cola commercial: lovely young interracial crowd holding hands in a circle in a beautiful meadow. “I’d like to teach the world to sing in perfect har-Mo-neeeee...”
I don’t doubt that individuals who are calmer and less avaricious will commit fewer atrocities, or that seeing people with different skin as equally human will make it harder to kill them, but facing starvation, your basic tofu-eating, yoga-posing Quaker will be up for a little cross cultural mayhem.
The way to peace is economic. Figure out the planet’s carrying capacity for this species. Keep population within that capacity, globally and locally. Create abundance by integrating with and mimicking the local ecosystems. Share unevenly divided natural wealth, locally and between regions. Pay attention and allow for the counter-intuitive. Everybody gets fed, housed, and educated. Enforce all of the above, locally and globally.
People will complain, but if you think about it, the developed world will be getting a bargain.