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Live 8-Ball

Like the idea behind Live 8, but don't think that the large crowds mean that everyone is behind this cause. If the top bands were not there, instead of a million people in Philly, you'd be very lucky indeed to have a thousand in the city that booed Santa Claus.

The level of " awareness " is much higher in Europe, but again, without the acts, the crowd would be a tiny fraction of what we saw today. So this is about as much a revolution as Live Aid was.

Unfortunately, debt forgiveness and the like are really meaningless when you speak of countries like Zaire, where you cannot even pick up a package at the Post Office without paying a bribe. And should we be giving aid to Sudan, or to Zimbabwe? With governments run by murderers and criminals, who have destroyed whatever wealth these countries used to have?

But what the hell, lets dig the music, follow the faded Rat, pretend that the large crowds went to the free concerts out of concern for Africa , and feel like we are all so morally superior.

Hi Phantom,

Hope you are enjoying Hawaii. Regards to Don Ho if you see him.

I agree Live-8 was a good thing. Aside from the usual small cadres of human rights activists and the tiny population of informed and caring world citizens, the rest of the attendees were simply music fans. And a diverse lot at that. Still it raised the consciousness of many folk around the world.

I know this comment will bum you out Phantom but Europe and the U.S. continue to owe an enormous debt to the people of Africa as a result of the colonial policies that are the foundation of African political and economic institutions today. Debt forgiveness is hardly meaningless when it will help to put food into the mouths of the starving. As for paying bribes for postal services you should note that corruption is not exclusive to the Africa. Hell corporate plunderers in the U.S. steal more in pension funds than the GNP of some of the nations you criticize.

The "faded Rat" I take it is Bob Geldoff? I'm sure you don't mean him any harm. The Boomtown Rats had a few good songs as I recall. He's a much better human rights activist though.

Feeling morally superior is a mindset associated with those who need to hide from the glaring discrepancies of this world. Many of the ~ 60 million Bush voters are of this ilk. They thumped their bibles all the way home from the voting booth. Yep, they cast their vote for the louder Christian. The better informed citizens of our wonderful planet rarely have time for feelings of moral superiority. Most of the time they are simply feeling astonished. Like the boy seeing a naked emperor pass by. They are somewhat reconciled to the inertia of all the comfortable people out there who could really make a difference if they threw their weight behind movements like Live 8 instead of dismissing it with cynical disdain.

Perhaps an old Hawaiian proverb makes sense here: Komo mai kau mapuna hoe. Translated - "Dip your paddle in." It means- Join in the effort.

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