by Mark Maxwell Abushady, NYC
Every Three Seconds is a film about hope. It is an affirmation that as individuals, we have the power to conquer a multitude of sins the world over, as well as those in our own backyards.
The film essentially follows the journey of five individuals from different backgrounds who were challenged out of the general indifference of the public at large towards hunger, wartime atrocities, poverty, the medical needs of the impoverished, and the decimation of the homes and lives of the poor by natural disaster. The challenges presented themselves as everything from an unexpected inner calling to a direct challenge by a popular TV host. In the process of relating their stories, the film also challenges the viewer to similarly “engage.”
As one of those featured in the film states, “I have grown to believe that there is no greater threat to human security on this planet than our well-trained capacity to flip off our empathy switch.” Indeed, this theme is made apparent many times in the film.
Happily, the film and those featured offer some guidance for those who would follow their example. Foremost is a noting that many become overwhelmed by the size of these problems rather than focusing on the difference they can make.
The ways in which these five individuals make a difference varies greatly, mirroring their abilities and backgrounds, but, bottom line, each makes a huge difference in the lives of many.
Those featured come across as happy, engaged, purposeful and hopeful. They clearly illustrate the need to be connected, and to be a part of something larger than ourselves. The case of Charlie Simpson, a little boy who made a huge impact in Haiti after the earthquake, also teaches us not to underestimate the power of children, and to support and encourage their empathetic natures at an early age.
Although some of the plight of the Congolese women is difficult to face, this important film should be seen for the good it can engender in our troubled, and sadly often apathetic and indifferent, world.
TAKE BACK YOUR POWER
We are living in a time of great fragmentation of our people, with accompanying, blatant corruption of, and collusion between, government and corporations on a massive scale. Every issue seems to polarize the public, with a net result of nothing being accomplished. This film, however, presents a topic with the capacity to bring together Democrat and Republican, Conservative and Liberal, the religious and secular. As such, it may herald, as is suggested by the film, the coming of a truly new age of energy production and power, while signaling the “last gasp” of the current energy paradigm.
Only a corporate action so wrong on so many levels could have the power to do this. Such is the case with the mandate of the installation of “smart” meters. These digital, electric, wireless devices, which communicate back to utility companies, are presented as capable of enhancing energy security, reducing greenhouse gases, improving urban air quality, and providing billions of dollars of benefits to the public. However, they also emit damaging amounts of radiation, have caused hundreds of house fires from explosions after being installed (or utilized to turn electric power off and on), have increased costs for customers (doubling and tripling charges in some cases without benefit TO the customer), and set the stage for a surveillance network in each and every home. Even further, as they are designed to track time of energy usage, they create the ability for utilities to implement differential pricing during peak periods of energy usage. They also add another layer of pulsed radiofrequency radiation in our homes.
And yet, the negatives go on. There is a wave of new, “smart technology” appliances, which, in connection with smart meters, will track customers’ habits and movements in the home, usage of energy and water, and potentially much more as homes are switched over to these appliances.
In some areas of the country where this mandate is occurring, moratoriums have been enacted on the installation of smart meters, given concerns of the residents. These concerns are fairly well documented in this film, with statements from lawyers, a former CIA director, doctors and researchers who show cellular changes which occur from the levels of radiation emitted from these devices.
Other, closely related issues are explored, including CISPA (the Cyber Intelligence Sharing Protection Act), which legalizes the transferring of the customers’ data collected by utilities and corporations to the government. Thomas A. Drake, whistle blower and former Senior Executive of the National Security Agency (NSA) relates the following: “What you’re seeing is the establishment of a surveillant society…the establishment of a surveillance network.”
A look is given at the usefulness of fear in keeping protests to a minimum, and the influence of the current Energy Industry in suppressing alternative technologies. Notable is the statement that six of the seven world’s largest companies are in the oil and gas industry, and have a vested interest in keeping the status quo. A striking example of this directive is given by Spain, which has enacted a “solar tax” on those persons generating their own energy. This new tax would extend the average time it would take for solar panels to pay for themselves from eight to twenty-five years, according to the solar lobby in that country. “Dirty electricity”, caused by AC/DC converters, cell phone radiation (and its possible connection with the growing number of autistic children), transmitting antennas and associated “cancer clusters”, are other topics examined.
Thalidomide, DDT, smoking, asbestos, lead paint, PCB, Fen-phen, methyl-mercury… these, as the film cites, were once “extensively tested and safe” according to numerous governments around the world, yet caused the deaths or compromised the health “of untold millions.”
The problem with Smart meters, as one interviewee puts it, is that … “It’s that a device that is broadcasting and receiving wireless signals permanently (that) has been surreptitiously placed in your home, unnecessarily and without your permission and without proving itself scientifically. This is a test case for technological democracy …” Finally, instructions are given on how to resist having one of these meters installed in or on your home. This film is a call for everyone to engage. As such, it is a must-see film.
Editor’s note: This original Creations Magazine review was previously published in our April-May 2014 Issue. We’ve brought this piece back because these “Smart Meters” have landed in this area. Utility customers know this: you have the right to refuse installation in your homes. We did just that.