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Hacktreks Travel

COLIN TODHUNTER
Uncle Sam’s Brand Named Cola

before sipping at the trough, read the small print:

Inside the cola can
It’s cold on the outside. But it is even colder on the inside. It’s not only colder, but darker. There is a kind of nothingness. A black liquid containing a thousand air bubbles, like people, disconnected from one another, and blinded in the darkness of myth and hypocrisy. The myth being that they are free, and the hypocrisy being that the myth of freedom only imprisons.
But what is nothingness - merely the absence of something. It is usually defined in this negative sense. But if nothingness is to exist as a concept it has to consist of something - substance. And in this case, it does. A kind of bitter tasting fizz, fuelled by empty hearts bloated by paranoia and fear. Of course, all stoked up by the interconnected interests of the industrial, military, and political elites, and ignited by them on the back of September 11th. US Freedom and democracy: feel free to endlessly consume, to envy your brother, to hate your neighbour, to fear anyone who is different, and of course to believe and to keep believing in the American Dream. Keep telling yourself that it tastes good and eventually it may - in a sort of sickly sweet way.

Outside the can
From the outside, it looks enticing and glamorous; a bright red metallic sexiness, draped in the Stars and Stripes and cloaked in Hollywood fantasy. But it is blood, not paint: blood-stained by those sacrificed in pursuit of the Dream. It’s all quite chilling really. And that is exactly the plan. To refrigerate and to comatose so that people no longer feel. Chill out! - or more precisely, be chilled out. It has become the self-propagating dream containing truths that are self-evident - but only to those within. Much of the rest of the world can see that there are no sweet dreams in store - merely nightmares. But those inside are living out their fantasy, their dream. The great American one.

But what does it taste like? - a fizzy type of sickliness. A gaseous fantasy that leaves a gut-wrenching aftertaste. In fact, here in India a particular brand named cola (one of the "big two") says on the bottle - contains no fruit products - or words to this effect. Void of any positive substance.
Look out! - coming soon to a country near you - Uncle Sam’s brand named cola. The brand being "Globalisation and Liberty". But for God's sake, before sipping at the trough, read the small print: ingredients - militarism, neo-imperialism, regime change, democracy, B52s, bullets and bombs. What it lacks in taste or substance, it more than makes up for with a kick - a knock out punch.
Be aware; be very aware. Warning: contains no freedom, harmony, self-determination or independence. Chill out. Sweet dreams. Sweet American Dreams.

© Colin Todhunter 2003
colin_todhunter@yahoo.co.uk

Waiting For India
Colin Todhunter on dining etiquette


On Arriving at Calcutta Airport
Colin Todhunter on Indian Customs

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