Monday, 28 June 2010

Neo-Nestle: Their Latest Sadistic Scam

A few years ago, a friend of mine linked me to a website which opened my eyes to the barbaric nature of Nestle. On reading, I was utterly horrified and vowed never to endorse the evil bastards again by giving them my money and I have stuck to this solidly (apart from one unintentional slip up in the form of a Fruit Pastel lolly which passed my unknowing lips).

This is what have as a suggested message for those trying to spread the word, like myself:

Take a minute to help stop Nestle's latest baby milk marketing scam.

You probably know about the Nestle boycott and the way Nestle pushes its baby milk around the world.

Nestle's latest global strategy is to promote its baby milk with the claim that it 'protects' babies, even though it knows babies fed on it are more likely to become sick than breastfed babies and, in conditions of poverty, more likely to die. Nestle is claiming its baby milk aids brain and eye development and supports the immune system. It has added prominent, colourful logos to product labels in 120 countries, undermining the obligatory 'breastfeeding is best for babies' warnings that the boycott campaign helped to bring in. Nestle is also targeting health workers to promote its claims.

Nestle's claims do not stand up to scrutiny and break the international marketing standards introduced by the World Health Assembly.

According to UNICEF: "Improved breastfeeding practices and reduction of artificial feeding could save an estimated 1.5 million children a year". As UNICEF, the World Health Organisation, governments and health campaigners try to spread the message that breastfeeding protects babies, Nestle is using its massive resources to try to convince mothers and health workers that its baby milk 'protects'.

For further information and a message that takes ONE MINUTE to send to Nestlé, see:

I feel like this can sum up the facts in a perfectly concise and cohesive way, something which I cannot do due to the sheer amount of effing and blinding that gets regurgitated onto the screen in front of me. I am a tad hot-headed when it comes to Nestle.

I would like to say that I cannot believe that there are human beings in this world who could do such an evil and twisted thing. Human beings with mothers whom they cuddle and old love letters and embarrassing moments and secret indulgences and pictures of themselves with no front teeth and sports day awards and cinema stubs and favourite smells and unique blemishes and old frayed underwear that they refuse to throw out.

But in such a materialistic world where time is money, land is money, love is money, sex is money, kicking a ball in a pair of shorts is more money than I will probably earn in my entire life, everything is fucking mullah, of course some of us are going to abuse our positions in order to gain more of these heavenly pieces of paper. Even at the cost of several million babies. But how do they get away with it? If you killed a single baby, the justice system would make you pay. But what about if thousands of people all help to kill millions of infants. How is that different? Those poor, poor mothers. They have no idea. I feel restless and useless.

Please send this email - it is written for you, all you need to do is literally press send.

Saturday, 26 June 2010

Sex and the atroCity

I really should have started a blog months ago, that way all this nonsense would be relevant. But nay, I will continue to hark back, obsessed with past obscenities, looking no further forward than this dusty keypad.

I am a huge fan of Sex and the City. As quite an active feminist (President of the Southampton University Feminist Society, don'cha know), I don't know whether this unintentionally goes against my morals: I enjoy watching a troupe of materialistic, fashion-obsessed, 30/40 something women talk constantly about sex and men, disguising their desperateness under the facade of lavish careers and liberated sex while actually terminally comotosed to anything 'real' and unable to function without a male counterpart. Sounds like Loose Women.
Alternatively, I enjoy watching the chronicles of a fabulous set of females, emotionally responding with empathy and compassion to the woes and successes that each endure in their relationships, friendships, careers and eventually, family life. And the sheer amount of documented sex is both refreshing, honest and humorous. ... I'll claim the latter.

But Sex and the City 2 left a bad taste in my mouth. A taste of racial insensitivity, faux feminism and downright dystopia. Again, much like Loose Women.

The burka/chip eating incident was the first that made me cringe. Not to mention the ghastly rendition of Single Ladies from Liza Minnelli (a baggy jumper with fishnets and heels, clad with two identical backing dancers at least a quarter of her age... really Liza?) which brought my hands to my eyes. The ultimate definition of face/palm.

How on earth could the directors/producers/writers/whomever else involved think that what SATC2 needed was a taste of moral recognition and cultural 'shock'? The only shocking thing was that after Samantha practically stripped in the middle of a busy Muslim town and started throwing around condoms while gyrating and humping the air (crikey, feminists everywhere must have been jumping for joy...), she wasn't stoned. Now that would have been an ending with a twist.

Now, I'm no expert on middle eastern culture or religion but quite clearly, neither are they; they most certainly had no authority to make the grand and hugely judgemental statements that they did. The fact that the setting of the film, Abu Dhabi, refused to let them make the film there says it all. As a viewer we saw two Abu Dhabis, both seen through western spectacles - one that was materialistic and luxurious and one that repressed women beyond all recognition. Oh, apart from the Muslim women who all secretly wear Prada under their burkas, pray for a visit to New York and read trashy American novels about how to be happy of course. Because that is true happiness - western living.

SATC2 representation of the Muslim faith = FAIL.

I wish I could articulate my feelings as well as Andrew O'Hagan can - this is the most scathing and brilliant review I have read yet.

I know it was a million years ago but...

I'm still not quite over the whole meeting David Cameron thing. And I think the reason why is due to the way in which we see politicians in this country - it's like they are celebrities. I know it would be hard to have it any other way, them being in the limelight so frequently and at least we're not Italy but still, they seem to have that sort of 'fame' aura around them. I blame the press.

My beef with the conservatives is their general air of superiority. Being just a normal lass from a normal, working class background, having attended a normal comprehensive school, university was something that loomed over my family with great pride and ambition but also an element of unattainability. Not because we aren't bright enough, but because it is so bloody expensive. My parents couldn't afford to go; back "in their day", only the richest kids went and everyone else got a job. Hence why my father has now been building for 45 years. With potentially 10 more to go. My parents would never have let their finances get the better of me or my brother's futures, which is why they saved. Like crazy. And that's why I could go. That and government support.

But what scares me is that a government like the conservatives aren't going to be really petrified about the cap on tuition fees being loosened. I can't imagine it bothering them at all. So that means 7 or 8 grand a year. And with drastic cuts, who's to say that generous government support for poorer families will be so securely kept in place? I'm already there, this won't affect me. But other families I know could be affected. University should be offered to anyone from any background - merit over money. Whether that means the government putting their hands in their pockets to help some bright sparks out or not, it shouldn't make a difference. My parents have worked public sector jobs all their lives; it's nice to know that some of the money they have given is coming back our way.

I anxiously await the cuts to be imposed. Don't forget about the little guy, George.

The Initial Ramble

Well, this is all very exciting.
I have never blogged before but I doubt I will ever have more free time in my life to blog than I currently do, so now seems a good time to begin. Of course, when I am an unemployed, broke, English graduate I will have all the time in the world, but what if The Observer call me on graduation day to say 'Chlo, we'll jet you off to Bangkok tomorrow to start your fabulous travel writing career, yes?' ... well, that's why I should start now. Just in case.

This summer I am quite the busy bee; moving house, rehearsing for the Edinburgh Fringe, performing at said festival and serving more fish and chips than you've had hot dinners. What a hoot. Expect garbled anecdotes from all the above.