Sunday, August 24, 2008

table turning*

Everything was going so well in this sweet New York Times story about "tattooed bikers" who rescue animals from abusive caretakers until this sneaked in:
The group was joined by a man from the Humane Society and an investor from Canada, a tall, slim figure with gelled hair who saw Rescue Ink on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” in May and flew down from Vancouver to ride along and talk about branding.

The presence of investors and "branding" lends everything else the sour taste of cynical marketing ploys and the ugly, morally decrepit mechanisms of capitalism; the insatiable desire to reduce--in the interest of reducing costs and raising profits--complexity to the greatest degree of singular, universally recognizable graphic simplicity.

*From Karl Marx, "The Fetishism of commodities and the Secret thereof":
The form of wood, for instance, is altered, by making a table out of it. Yet, for all that, the table continues to be that common, every-day thing, wood. But, so soon as it steps forth as a commodity, it is changed into something transcendent. It not only stands with its feet on the ground, but, in relation to all other commodities, it stands on its head, and evolves out of its wooden brain grotesque ideas, far more wonderful than “table-turning” ever was.

No comments: