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Politics of Resources and Development
The term electronic herd is used in Thomas Friedman’s book, “The Lexus and the Olive Tree” (Friedman, 2000). A term he uses to describe the effects of Globalization in today’s world in which he claims that retail supermarkets have fully embraced globalization replacing the world super powers as to their resourcefulness to use the free market principles to maximize on massive revenue sourcing market mechanisms and literally using the capitalist super economies military hardware to beat down any resistance to their mission.
The electronic herd is further divided into the short horn herd and the long horn herd. The short horn herd in the context of the Lexus and the Olive Tree is the capitalist investor feeding his hunger for wealth by buying up everything on offer in stocks and money markets(Friedman, 2000). The long horn herd on the other hand in the same context refers to large multinational corporations engaging in foreign direct investments by offering finances and expertise to build industries through strategic alliances and partnerships. The herd is unstoppable with world leaders relegated to wooing the herd as a source of investment. These are the shapers (multinational corporations) and adapters (State leaders).
However, there have been pronounced incidences of backlash as expressed in the book by Friedman; McDonald in Japan had to formulate its policies to accommodate the cultural practices of the Japanese people. The Olive Tree is used to symbolically express the counties whose people have a well developed sense of national cultures which tend to dilute the electronic herds projections and thus these cultures pose a threat to the money making mechanisms. In Southern France, French government offers huge subsidies to farmers in an effort to protect the cultural practices of the people of Southern France from the effects of globalization whose effective control of the global market tend towards buying out the smaller farms to a single multinational entity with the aim of optimizing agricultural output as a mans to source raw materials for their large industries (Friedman, 2000). This backlash has been also experienced in Northern Africa and Egypt (Edozien, 2011). Governments who had been lured into the globalization trap have been toppled through massive protest. These protests have been catalyzed by the effect of the World Wide Web which knows no borders.
Social networking sites became an avenue for many unemployed graduates to openly and freely discuss issues that they felt needed to be addressed with a sense of urgency. The citizens in Tunisia and Egypt with the youth being the majority, linked up in this sites calling for boycotts and mass protests as globalization pushed for minimum wage and few employment opportunities through the employment of mechanized industries leaving millions of youth unemployed and on the edge. This is what has resulted in a ground swell.
The social networking site were basically a magnet for advertisements for huge corporation with a view to reach a global market, use it to analyze different global trends and capitalize on the collected data for implementation through policies backed by numbers. The explosion of riots have thrown into disarray their strategic alliances and partnerships effectively bringing about a blackout in the globalization attempts. Currently the protest have moved to Libya and the Super powers have joined the rebels to oust Khadafy in an effort to latter capitalize on Libya quality crude as a way to rebuild their damaged infrastructure.
However, the olive Tree is deep rooted and it is clearly apparent that even after the tree is cut down shoots sprout.
David C. Korten’s book “when Corporations Rule the World” is a masterpiece in many people’s views and actively delves in the negative impact of the effects of globalization as we know it. Multinational corporations have policies that have little regard for humanity that has taken years to develop civilizations through wars, natural disaster and disease ( Imreh, 2011). All that they really care about is making dollars not sense. The multinationals propose for minimum wage for its workers, ant like societies, no priorities accorded to the natural environments and generally capitalize on other fellow human beings misfortune as is happening in Libya, Tunisia and Egypt.
With the internet and similar technological advancements in information and communication there is an improved sense of self and realization of cultural values. Since time immemorial, humanity has looked up to Mother Nature with reverence, and an attempt by the electronic herd to derail this commitment is a threat to the whole world with them included.
As they strive to suck all that the earth has to have in natural resources at the same time causing wanton degradation at the expense of the common people, it appears to have the same effect as a malignant cancer (Korten, 2001).
Friedman, Thomas L. The Lexus and the olive tree. Farrar, Straus, Giroux, 2000. 21 Mar. 2011. http://books.google.co.ke/books?id=lMVSRj_hYm0C&dq=%22+the+lexus+and+the+olive+tree%22+by+Thomas+L.+++Friedman&hl=en&ei=_piHTeeeBoKDOraFvYUJ&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&ved=0CC0Q6AEwAA
Litke, Mark. The ‘Electronic Herd’ Rides Again. One Market Plunges, Fear and Nervousness Set In. Tokyo. Abc News, 28 Feb. 2007. 21 Mar. 2011. http://abcnews.go.com/Business/story?id=2911252&page=1
Imreh, Alex. When Corporations Rule the World – David C. Korten. Blog at WordPress.com., 2 May. 2011. 21 Mar. 2011. http://aleximreh.wordpress.com/2011/02/05/when-corporations-rule-the-world-david-c-korten/
Edozien, Glory. BN Hot Topic: North Africa Political Uprising: Lessons for Nigeria? Bella Naija. 25 Feb. 2011. 21 Mar. 2011. http://www.bellanaija.com/2011/02/25/bn-hot-topic-north-africa-political-uprising-lessons-for-nigeria/
Korten, David C. When corporations rule the world. Berrett-Koehler Publishers, 2001. 21 Mar. 2011. http://books.google.co.ke/books?id=3snUPLQneC0C&dq=%22+when+corporations+rule+the+world%22+by+David+C.+Korten&source=gbs_navlinks_s