It’s only been a few years since the beginning of the 21st century, which was hailed as a new dawn for humanity. And yet, these are paradoxical times. From the catastrophe of war, terrorism, pestilence, disease, and pollution to the extinction of many forms of life on the planet, we have become eyewitnesses to the greatest changes and challenges humankind has ever faced. We can no longer pretend that the world is the same. Our perception – the way we experience our environment – is forcing us to look around with wide-open eyes.
“There is no alternative” (in the words of former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher) to globalization and the primacy of the multinational corporation. According to the defenders of this status quo philosophy-dubbed TINA-there is only one road to economic success: get large multinationals to locate in your local community, and export your goods as widely as possible all across the globe.
Because of their huge scale and international reach, these multinational retailers and manufacturers are seen by TINA proponents as being more efficient and profitable, more able to deliver better prices for their goods, and more able provide jobs in the communities that they are located in. To TINA proponents locally owned small businesses are simply quaint remnants of the past, no longer able to compete in the global economy.