cj#637> re: corporate culture et al


Richard Moore

Dear cj,

        Here's another posting on the issue of corporte vs. non-corporate
life styles.  (Todd, in his quest, you will note, also rediscovers Bhudda's
insight about suffering and desire.)  Please see my comment following
Todd's message.

        More TWA 800 information continues to arrive, however this posting
seems like enough for a Saturday.


Date: Sat, 22 Feb 1997
Sender: Todd HFillingham <•••@••.•••>
Subject: Re: cj#636> re: paradise plans & corporate culture

        Thank you for a wonderful letter. Your story is a story that I
have been struggling with since I was in school studying film making (a
long time ago). I was never tempted to follow the corporate path and was
aware early on of the the inherent contradictions you have described. But
I have always been aware that I have relied on those that have followed
this path (father, significant others, good friends, clients) and have
accepted their pain as part of my responsibility.
        One of my earliest student films was about the very issue you have
raised, i.e. is it better for the individual to turn their back on this
monster and hide in the hills and in so doing is this responsible to the
society? I've stopped making films years ago and have tried to make a
living with my hands, first as an itinerant carpenter and eventually as
the owner of a custom furniture making studio (w/ 2 part time employees,
hardly corporate).
        This has only been possible because I've been married
to a woman who has been deeply engaged in the corporate world as a health
professional. We often run through the scenarios, you've had to face, on a
theoretical basis.
        On personal level the one truth I've finally come to understand is
that desire is in fact the root of all pain. Unless I live this moment I'm
lost. Yes, I desire a new truck, the latest power tool that will finally
make my business highly profitable, a new sail boat, a bigger and faster
computer, oh and I'd love to get back into film making now with the new
digital editing capabilities,... if only I had all of that then I'd be
happy. If only it were true. We all have heard this and many of us are so
angry at ourselves partially because we judge ourselves by whether or not
we truly believe this. But when it comes time to make significant life
decisions, this is when we really need to hear it loud and clear. Desire
*is* the root of all pain.
        On a social level I believe in staying engaged, socially active
where I feel I can be effective. For me, part of that effort is to be
envolved in setting up a business as a worker's co-op. Currently I'm
working with and a founding member of the Precious Water Co-op. We are
working to develop, fabricate and market products that help conserve water
and educate people about the advantages of being aware of where their
water comes from and where it goes. We are doing this as a worker's owned
co-op with a further goal of providing jobs to those members of society
that may have a fragile economic support network. Quixotic possibly, but
it helps me.

        Good luck in your search.

Todd Fillingham



        The choice that Todd and Susan describe is between the corporate
system on the one hand, and primitive individualism, if you will, on the
other.  To get away from corporatism, we have models such as living in
remote areas, turning to manual occupations, and perhaps forming small,
close-knit communities, coops, or communes.  These are positive steps, good

        But these kinds of options, if we limit ourselves to them alone,
are in effect surrendering the worlds of society, technology, and politics
-- and may I add history itself -- to coporatization.  By accepting such
limits we are marginalizing ourselves in the context of the larger society,
isolating ourselves into small niches whose with little cumulative
societal impact.

        At the other end of the option-spectrum, we have periodic attempts
to launch third-party campaigns, ala Jerry Brown or Ralph Nader or The
Alliance.  These kinds of efforts do escape from the "small niche"
category, but they are in their own way marginalized.  Within the context
of mass-media campaigns and propaganda, these movements lack the
infrastructure (grass-roots substance) necessary to challenge
corporate/two-party hegemony.

        How can we (those who want a society oriented around human welfare
and prosperity) broaden our base?  How can we discover one another and
perceive ourselves -- and be perceived -- as the societal majority we in
fact are?  How can we collectively refuse to yield to corporatization?
This is what I was trying to get at in my original question about "paradise

        Further discussion invited.


    Posted by Richard K. Moore  -  •••@••.•••  -  Wexford, Ireland
     Cyberlib:  www | ftp --> ftp://ftp.iol.ie/users/rkmoore/cyberlib