Friday, February 24, 2006

Virtual exploitation

Blogging on hold for the rest of the evening. A visit to The Blog Quebecois has revealed a Sims / Civilization style simulation of McDonalds.

A review:
The game requires the player to learn and master all the complex techniques of a big international corporation like McDo. You'll bribe South American officials for the rights to clear rainforests for cattle and soy; you'll plump up cattle with additives; you'll coerce and influence government and scientific interests back home; and you'll manipulate your employees to achieve the highest profits.
From the game:
Making money in a corporation like McDonald's is not simple at all. Behind every sandwich there is a complex process you must learn to manage: from the creation of pastures to the slaughter, from the restaurant management to the branding. You'll discover all the dirty secrets that made us one of the biggest company of the world.
Now, I will test the agenda.


Pietr said...

With a big side order of McDisclaimer.

In 1987 I was staying at a hotel in London.
The loony landlady kicked me out.
I went to sleep on the coldest night of the year in a gazebo at Kensington Palace Gardens, where I was arrested by (not unsympathetic)Royal Parks Police.
At 4am I was released after a coffee and warm cell onto the streets of Charing Cross;I went into MacDonalds and ordered Breakfast.
I was cold, ragged and homeless.
The manager told me to sit down and brought my tray over for me.He smiled and called me 'sir'.

People who attack McDonalds are slags.

v said...

On a related note, whaddaya think of this "Crunchy Con" business? M'self, I buy it, retail. I know The Fog tends toward libertarianism, but I'm stoked to see a healthy dose of skepticism toward Big Bidness here. Can I get an amen for this:

"1. We are conservatives who stand outside the conservative mainstream; therefore, we can see things that matter more clearly.

2. Modern conservatism has become too focused on money, power, and the accumulation of stuff, and insufficiently concerned with the content of our individual and social character.

3. Big business deserves as much skepticism as big government.
8. The relentlessness of media-driven pop culture deadens our senses to authentic truth, beauty, and wisdom."

MapMaster said...

Thanks for the comment and the link, Anonalogue. I'd heard ot the "Crunchy Cons" but until I looked at the link and your post on the subject I didn't really know anything about it. I tend to be averse to movements as they usually and early on acquire a critical mass of conviction that outweighs any distrust of using the government to more broadly achieve their objectives, no matter how noble their intentions are to begin with. In any case, as far as the amens go, I can only speak for myself and not the other Foggers who are, with one possible exception, not quite as small-c conservative as myself (heck, I think everything went downhill when the voting franchise was extended beyond property owners).

Nos. 1 & 2: too subjective and relative for me to give an outright amen. To tell you the truth, I'm not sure exactly where the conservative mainstream is. But I'm inclined to give a nod to no. 2 at least so far as I understand the intent behind it. I'm not sure why the author is posing the items of his manifesto as poles in an antagonist relationship with an ambiguous conservative mainstream, but I guess that's what makes it a movement and a manifesto.

No. 8: absolutely, amen to that.

No. 3, which I find the most interesting, and which is what really distinguishes the "Crunchy Cons" from other conservatives: While I place value on similar objectives such as organic and free range food products, small businesses, home schooling, etc., I don't object to big business as a concept. With every purchase I make, I consider the cost and benefit of one choice over another as we all do, and in many cases the cost associated with "Cruncy Con" values exceeds the particular benefit I derive from patronizing small, independent or organic producers. Similarly, there are often benefits associated with big business, such as standardization or price. Where I am skeptical of big business is its ability to procure guarantees or economic controls from the state in the form of, for example, "tax abatements, loan guarantees, zoning changes, condemnations, outright subsidies, tax-exempt bond issues, exemption from regulations, and selective public infrastructure investments." (Quote taken from Robert Locke's What is American Corporatism? which oddly enough I quoted the other day in a similar context and which well represents the subject I think.) However, ultimately it must be the government who is responsible for appropriating these legal and regulatory devices that can only be distributed through political means rather than through rational processes in the marketplace.

MapMaster said...

However, ultimately it must be the government who is responsible for appropriating these legal and regulatory devices that can only be distributed through political means rather than through rational processes in the marketplace.

Sorry, that last line should have read:

rather than big business obtaining competitive advantages through rational processes in the marketplace.

Pietr said...

The best sandwich and coffee shop in the UK at the moment is a chain called 'Pret A Manger'.
Their coffee is delicious.Their food is wholesome and organic-and delicious.
Freshly made every day, what they have left at closing time is given to charity.

They are owned by McDonald's.

Mike said...

When a philosopher tells you that people are too concerned with "money, power, and the accumulation of stuff" and not concerned enough with this or that abstraction, your mind is about to be fucked and your pocket is about to be picked.

Pietr said...

If only we could return to simpler times,when people cared for one another, such as the forties or the beginning of the century.
Or how about a return to the age of romance, when nobody washed for a year?

Anonymous said...

not much of a dirty "secret" if they are part of an online game anyone can play