This is a BIG debate, who do your trust with the next economic market -- Citizens or Corporations?
On the left is Annie Leonard, eco-consumer activist who has brilliantly explained complex issues surrounding sustainability, pollution and toxins in our products, air, water, earth and sky through Story-of-Stuff and more mini-movies. After all she has seen and researched, she is taking the stand against corporations who created the eco-economic mess we're in and how the government is now just another one of "them." [3.3.11 full movie now available below]
On the other left is for Jason Clay, Sr.VP of Market Transformation at the World Wildlife Fund; which is working to infuse sustainable standards across the biggest corporations -- the top 100 which control 25% of commodities affecting bio-diversity. The WWF is attempting fast and safe eco and economical growth by getting these corporations to join hands and come up with agreed upon standards that everyone can live with while keeping their retirement portfolios growing. His full TEDx talk is also found below and is well worth the 20 minutes to view.
Jason represents the standards that big business will abide by, he knows that voices aren't enough to kick start this thing, he says that, "...after 40 years the organic movement is .7 of 1% of the marketshare." Jason is a realist. He's working for fast change that has some metrics attached to it because corporations are machines which run on numbers.
The good news -- Corporations who created climate change and extensive pollution problems are the now the ones trying to reverse the issues by working together outside of global governments and creating agreed upon standards to get our planet back on track. This is the only way we'll be able to solve the issues as eco-talks at Kyoto, Copanhagen, etc. have proven that governments are too fragmented to create meaningful action.
The bad news -- While WWF and corporations are working together to solve the problems, the average citizen is being cut out of the standard formulation process and through the supreme court, citizens are also being cut out from having a real voice in government as well. Whatever standard that big business comes up with, we'll all have to trust that it's the best solution. We have to trust that the standard making process is fair, reaches deep into the supply chain, and is accepted across the globe. We also have to trust that these newly formed "unions" of corporate responsibility won't be corrupted by power. How secure are you feeling with that notion right now?
Why Women Need to Care -- the process of corporations working together to produce standards will create bonds and establish more blatant market monarchies. This is where the new economic power will live, not in DC but between the sellers (corporations) and the buyers (consumers). To stay viable, corporations must retain their market share. Even the Fortune 500 turns over every 10 years as market winners become losers. Ladies -- lock and load up on what you believe in.
Money talks, but so does social media.
Annie represents the social media voice of women consumers who want something better for our homes, families and lives. She's using her voice to fight for political footholds. In Story-of-Stuff, Annie explains in 20 minutes the ramification of sustainability questions. Bravo. Through her work, she now has the ear of millions of concerned consumers.
But consider this, what if we supported the highest sustainable standards will drive the next economy in the profitable direction? What if WE (women) were included in the standard conversation from the start instead of having it shoveled upon us later and expected to push it around.
While companies are getting their sustainable act together, we can be bringing our own education level up to snuff.
The following questions are a sampling of what kind of sustainability questions can be asked. Download CompanyProductForm. Sustainable Standards are a shorter version of this list as all stakeholders have to agree to the standards conditions and not all questions make the cut. When you do look at a standard, you'll have a better idea of what has been left out.
Can two lefts make a right? With all the checks and balances in the same room, i.e consumers/buyers, corporations/sellers and products/standards -- we have a good start on how to trust, but verify on a global basis. [3.3.11 - but as Annie shows above, before we can verify, we need to get our power back.]