The process of wealth concentration that punishes the world not only is based on mechanisms for extracting value, but also is the cornerstone of this cultural concentration trajectory that, as it moves forward, narrows the diversity of worldviews, knowledge, perspectives, values, solutions. The cultural concentration turns voices into echoes with very serious consequences.
Cultural concentration is expressed in multiple dimensions imposing the vision and interests of powerful sectors over large majorities of the globalized world. This imposition has dramatic consequences, among the worst, the loss by disappearance of millenary cultures and the silencing of others that, despite being strongly harassed, still endure. As biodiversity suffers from the reduction or death of entire species, universal culture suffers from the marginalization or disappearance of multiple expressions and languages that are replaced by a handful of cultural conceptions and hegemonic languages that are imposed on us. Submerged in this hegemony it is difficult to perceive the tremendous consequences of cultural impoverishment. Are we aware of that each culture is a carrier of a diverse range of knowledge, values, perspectives, ways of feeling and acting towards the world, our life, the universe, social and environmental protection?
Cultural diversity implies that faced with problems and challenges we can count on and avail ourselves of a broad spectrum of interpretations and answers, much larger than the solutions that any dominant culture is able to conceive. The serious thing is that every type of intervention produces very different consequences, results, and implications. When the diversity of perspectives and approaches is reduced, as it happens today, we are exposed to homogeneous solutions of alleged universal effectiveness, adopted by imposition, stubborn and irresponsibly reiterated.
As humanity, we have slid down towards social and environmentally destructive trajectories. We are strapped to ineffective solutions, ignoring other options that emerged from different perspectives and cultures that could add effectiveness and meaning to political, economic, environmental, educational, and health-related interventions that are proposed in the current critical moment. We have fallen into a dangerous reductionism of visions, homogenization of solutions, loss of options, denial of questionings, grogginess of existential reflection, and sterilization of actions. To cap it all, it is worth noting that we are left with silenced alarms.
If the dominant credo comes loaded with selfishness, individualistic pushiness, of everyone for oneself, never-ending greed, of muzzling consciences, of disdaining others, if we did not have alternative visions and options because we had been gobbled up by the concentrating irrationality that turns hegemonic and destroys or annuls the diversity of other trajectories and rationalities, then the danger of manipulated behaviors is multiplied and increased. Through colonizing minds, dismantling wills, fragmenting societies with values that extol egotisms and cruelty, cultural domination imposes agendas alien to us and slides us towards blind alleys.
Indeed, this blurred destiny is not unavoidable. A lot has been stated about economic transformation being indispensable for caring for our planet and the general wellbeing and we know how to address it. At the same time, and of equal importance, there is a need for cultural transformation that would free the ability to give our actions alternative welfare, reflection, meaning and sense.
Reverting cultural concentration is essential both for freeing us from submissions as for growing in responsibilities and meaning. This implies a social effort for transforming what enables concentration and, not afterwards but at the same time, an individual effort in clarification that would allow us to join in and support transformation trajectories.
Social effort to overcome the destructing cultural concentration entails addressing multiple challenges, among which the most significant are: lifting the media latch imposed by a handful of concentrated media, cleansing dishonesty and trickery out of politics, uplifting our educational systems to form persons able to understand contemporary complexities and act accordingly, developing a diversity of think-tanks able to propose better courses and ways of functioning.
- The media latches imposed by concentrated groups that turn hegemonic manage to manipulate public opinion through informational biases, misinformation, making their agendas and interpretations prevail. With that, they favor certain kindred interests and actors and impair or punish others. The reiteration of their messages generates more echoes than emancipated voices within the population. Each transformation process requires democratizing the media system leaving behind every modality of media concentration.
- The way of doing politics has slide towards marketing operations where dishonesty and deceit become commonplace. Electoral processes are part of such charade, thus evaporating guaranties that those who are elected truly represent interests and needs of those who favored them with their vote. This generates very dangerous cracks in representation that distort the democratic fundamentals. We need to liberate democracies thus captured.
- Educational systems do not appear from nowhere, they are the product of a prevailing social order. In some cases, they have been enhanced by the determination of some illustrious educators but, in essence, they were not designed or structured to form persons that would understand the processes in which they are immersed and that, in such context, receive the analytical and managerial instruments to transform them as social and environmental circumstances demand. We need to exalt educational systems with contents and teaching methods orientated towards caring for the planet and all “others.”
- One of the most serious consequences of cultural concentration is the prevalence of some think-tanks, not in terms of the clarification they provide, but rather because of the financing and media coverage they receive. Thus, their conclusions and “findings” are presented as sole truths cornering or silencing other interpretations and perspectives. These think-tanks that turn hegemonic must justify the interests of powerful groups offering them an ideological foundation that allows them to convince sectors that are afflicted by the prevailing order to defend the interests that infringe upon theirs. We must support other think-tanks that can develop a diversity of conceptions and eventual lines of action so that different sectors of the population can recognize the needs of the planet and their own interests and, from there, understand how and why things happen as they suffer them.
In this way, when dismantling the mechanisms that reproduce economic and decisional concentration that prevails almost everywhere, it will also be necessary to resolve the cultural concentration that sometimes precedes but always accompanies, facilitates, and supports the concentrating power.