Fortified With Vitamins and Iron

Quentin Fottrell sez:

As a last resort, I recently took refuge at a Socialist Workers talk about how advertisers market happiness. I had heard it all before, but I was prepared to listen until the very end when the mobile phones started ringing and one-by-one they were outed as supporters of capitalist oppressors Nokia, Sony Ericsson, Motorola and Siemens.

Do advertisers market happiness? I doubt it, for if they did no-one would buy anything. The point of an advertisement is to whet the appetite of the consumer, to make the person feel that they will not be happy until they make their purchase and have the item in their possession. It seems more accurate to say that advertisers market misery.

Never been to an SWP talk myself, but I doubt that they’re so extreme in their opposition to capitalism that they believe one should refrain from making use of any items produced by capitalist firms. How would one keep one’s milk fresh for starters? Is there a socialist Weetabix out there? It would be quite hard to struggle for the emancipation of the working class on an empty stomach. Speaking of which, I have noticed some rather lumpy hard bits in my organic Weetabix of late. This never happened before. Something has clearly changed in the Weetabix production process: it may be that the rise in global wheat prices has had repercussions in other areas of production -cutbacks in quality control, cheaper replacement components, that sort of thing. Whatever the explanation, it is making for many an unpleasant morning. Times are indeed tough in recession-era Ireland.


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July 2008
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