14.7.04

A good idea but for the wrong reasons

Unbrand America

I was taught that the more a company had to advertise, the less reliable the product. My parents also instilled in me a dislike for wearing "named" clothes. Today, of course, both ideas are heretical.

Reading Brave New World, set in a year determined not by the birth of a religious figure but by the birth of Henry Ford, takes corporatism to the ultimate degree. I'm not one of those fanatics that thinks that the creeping corporate presence is a bad thing globally; I am one of those that bewails the loss of country culture.

What do I mean by that? I'm not (for example) anti-Starbucks. But I am anti three Starbucks within five blocks of work. I am anti Starbucks in Paris. I'd prefer to get my coffee or latte or whatever at a local place, soaking in local culture with my foam and biscotti. I try to shop at independent bookstores. And I think it's a shame that the EU has done away with the franc, the punt, the mark, the lira, etc.

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