With three post Christmas days of holiday there will be a few crowded shops, which I guess is good for the economy, though maybe not so good for the planet?
We tend to like doing things in crowds, well, some people do. Crowds give us the feeling that what is going on is justifiable, and it gives us the feeling of being part of a community.
But crowd wisdom seems to be questionable, crowds are really only wise when they act as individuals, where one person’s view does not affect that of another, then the collective view tends to be more often right than wrong.
But we also live in a society which has systems of Government which treat us as a body of people, with leaders taking decisions on our behalf within what is termed democracy, or, as in North Korea, in the name of an adopted principle which everyone is supposed to be signed up to.
Mass action has lead to some change in the Middle East and North Africa, some being assisted by social networking devices like Twitter and Facebook. Another mass action movement, Avaaz, seems to be developing at a great pace and assisting change globally. Provided it maintains a networking of independent thinkers the outcome could be very positive indeed, a kind of world democracy in action which is the dream state of many Sci-Fi novels.
It seems a shame that Football Clubs, TV Celebrities and Food and Clothing Brands create more mass following than more worthwhile groups like Medecins Sans Frontieres, or Amnesty International, or the WWF or Greenpeace. OK, so this may seem like political decision making rather than social networking for the sake of it, but being part of considered mass action where you can join and then leave from time to time is surely a healthy engagement with society, and much more productive than engaging in negative protesting without a positive way forward?
I am not suggesting there are absolute rights and wrongs here, only that these things are a part of our engagement with others, and that choices we make on them, after appropriate review, are very important indeed.
We have an interesting decade ahead.