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Lessons from a Reel and Meal

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The monthly Reel and Meal events at the New Deal are one of the reasons I moved to Greenbelt not long ago, having attended several over the last couple of years with friends from my old ‘hood and loved the whole vibe and the aging hippies, like myself, who create it.

ww1And last night’s Reel and Meal was filled with that same concerned, somewhat revolutionary spirit that had appealed to me in the first place.  A standing-room-only crowd watched and then discussed “Occupy Love,” a documentary about the Occupy movement.  Here are the highlights (for me) from the evening.

– That was such an exciting time and I’m so sorry the Occupiers aren’t occupying anymore.

– The CHEARS discussion circle recently discussed Sacred Economics by Charles Eisenstein, who is interviewed in “Occupy Love”.  In keeping with the message of the book, it’s free online.

– When Naomi Klein said in an interview that we’re fighting “neoliberalism,” defined as unfettered capitalism, my reaction was “Huh?”  Wikipedia doesn’t really explain this curious, almost assbackwards term.

– Greenbelt’s new Timebank – coming soon – is a great step in creating an alternative economy AND developing community.  Can’t wait!

– One audience member told us he was on his way to join a WWOOF location (Worldwide Opportunities in Organic Farming) and gave a short pitch for the experience.  As a garden writer I’ve followed WWOOFing both here and abroad and am a big supporter.

– My favorite character in the movie, by far, was Reverend Billy and his Church of Stop Shopping.  His message certainly resonated with Greenbelter Barbara Stevens, too.  Her after-movie comment to the audience was exactly that – “Stop Shopping!”  She also posted to the Greenbelters Facebook page this morning to recommend two more movies – “What the Bleep do We Know” and “I AM,” both available on Netflix (as is “Occupy Love”).

– My top take-away from the evening was to come back for more, which I’ll certainly do.  Thanks to the organizers!

Follow Susan Harris:
Susan started blogging about Greenbelt soon after moving here in 2012, and that first blog has grown into this nonprofit community website. She also created and curates the Greenbelt Maryland YouTube channel. In 2021 Susan joined the Board of Directors of Greenbelt Access TV. Retired from garden writing and teaching, she continues to blog at GardenRant.com.

  1. Pam J.
    | Reply

    Here’s my take: Slapping a “neo” onto words like liberal and conservative challenges us when for decades we’ve been using those words as shorthand. I think that Naomi Kline is a big thinker who may (or may not) understand 20th century economic theory (I sure don’t) and is trying to make the myriad economic and political changes of the last 60 years or so accessible to Everyman and Everywoman. Here’s another take on the N word:

    Not to be confused with the political liberalism of John Stuart Mill, neoliberalism is characterized by investigative reporter Naomi Klein as a “holy trinity” — privatization, deregulation and cuts to social spending — in which governments dismantle trade barriers, abandon public ownership, reduce taxes, eliminate the minimum wage, cut health and welfare spending, and privatize education. She calls the means of achieving this goal “disaster capitalism” and describes how it has resulted in a worldwide redistribution of income and wealth to the already rich at the expense of economic solvency for the middle and lower classes. (From: http://www.naomiklein.org/reviews/ms-magazine-review-shock-doctrine)

    Good luck in figuring it all out. Kline’s books are big fat tomes that I’ve tried to read but find myself setting aside because they make my brain hurt.

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