Paradigms and Prosperity

Paradigms…what is a paradigm you ask? A paradigm is an idea, value or belief, how you perceive something through your lens of the world. I really had no idea what a paradigm was either, but now that we know, let’s explore further what I think of paradigms and my paradigm on globalization and other sustainability topics.

In the article for the yes argument on globalization, I was, at first, not buying into the idea of allowing people to have their will with trading and selling goods, and a growing economy. I thought that if these developing countries were poor and in poverty already, how would giving them technology serve to help them become a flourishing developing country at all? When diving further into this technology, looking at the United States, technology hasn’t necessarily benefitted the way we look at the earth and hasn’t helped how we have taken care of the planet. The United States and the world really (with this paradigm as a whole) is realizing through our industrialized revolution and continual cascading of over consumption that we’ve been doing more damage with technology than good. Consumers in developed countries, like myself, are always wanting the next best thing…the newest Iphone, or brand-new vehicle and the industries are happy to provide with their new technology and promotion. I, as well as every other American that can afford these things, do not ever stop and think about how one purchase or viewpoint can make such an impact. It impacts the planet, my life, others’ lives, developing countries, poor people in those developing countries and so many other factors of the world. If we stop to think about this, it is easy to say just cut back on consuming and the world will be fine. That’s the idea, isn’t it? Then the economy would crash, people would begin to lose their money as well as their jobs, fight for resources, and then we have a whole other problem when trying to find a solution to sustainability in globalization. Is there ever a win-win situation here?

What about the paradigm of helping the developing countries not do what we’ve already done? I believe this idea could be helpful, but in order for us to tell them to how do become more sustainable it raises more questions of with what money, why didn’t we the developed countries do that, when will this outcome of being sustainable happen? A constant problem of comparison, funding and never knowing if the outcome of helping a developing country would be positive or negative also looms over this idea. Not to mention, all of the factories, oil wells, and other investments the United States counts on within those developing countries. If we were to help other developing countries become more sustainable, would that lead to the demise of resources that the United States needs to function, or sustain ourselves. If this happens, property and money become a key component to every aspect of resources overseas (as they already are).

My paradigm of this now, after reading the text and discussing this in class, is that it is indeed so important for developing countries to attain wealth and a flourishing economy through globalization. Although it cannot be done immediately, studies have shown that poverty directly relates to environmental hazards and pollution of the world. I believe that since we, as a whole world, have distinguished a global problem of waste, pollution, deforestation and other wicked problems, that we can use this technology for making smarter, more eco-friendly items, that we, as consumers, can consume. This would make for a market that is still flowing with production and consumption, but production and consumption that is better for the environment. I am hopeful with this idea, and as we are still working on more eco-friendly products, I believe that if we continue to put our heads together as a people united and focused on preservation of this world, that we will make progress to becoming a more sustainable people for our planet Earth.

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