How the Simpson’s Opening Sequence Actually Supports Globalization (and probably wasn’t directed by Banksy)
By Scott Creighton.
The worm has turned; it’s time to demonize China’s human rights and labor policies for the good of the global economy. China is moving toward protectionist policies and that can’t be allowed, so bring in The Simpsons.
UK street artist, Banksy, has been given credit for having directed the opening sequence for the latest episode of The Simpsons and it’s receiving a great deal of “progressive” support… which it doesn’t deserve. Whether or not “Banksy” actually submitted the script for this sequence is almost impossible to confirm as that Banksy himself is anonymous and not likely to do a press conference about the subject. (The “official” Banksy website does have the video up, but with no commentary, and it is located with two other videos that simply mention his work or his name, as if it were showcasing cultural references to Banksy and not necessarily his work. Hard to tell what that means.)
The sequence basically exposes the inner workings of the off-shored animation industry (in a childish and cartoonish way) and it targets China specifically. References to slave/prison labor, child labor, and dolphins and pandas make it very clear that China is the location of the draconian animation mill in the opening sequence of the Simpson’s episode. Supposedly this is an attempt to educate the world as to the evils of globalization, but it isn’t. Instead, this is an effort to demonize the Chinese economy (and “protectionism” by extension) at a time that serves the interests of globalists like Tim Geithner and his friends at the IMF and World Bank.
I seriously doubt Banksy would choose to help globalists like Rupert Murdoch at a time like this.
(in the interests of full disclosure, yes, that is a Banksy mural on my banner at the top of my page. Has been there for about two years.)
Probably not “Banksy”
Word all around the blogs is that Banksy himself directed this opening sequence for the Simpsons, yet that all seems to be based on the one single post from Wooster which gives no details nor does it provide statements from Fox or Banksy himself. Now psuedo-left sites like the Huffington Post and the Guardian are parroting each other making the same claim and referencing each other as “proof”.
I don’t think this is his work and I have several reasons for saying that.
The first and most obvious reason that I know this is not Banksy’s work, is quite simply the signature. Banksy’s signature is quite unique and though it is never exactly the same, it does, like any other signature, have distinguishing characteristics that make it his. The Simpsons episode features two “signatures” of Banksy’s, one on the opening billboard and one on a wall outside the school neither of which look anything like his.
(click on image for larger view)
In fact, the opening sequence features not one but two shots of this inaccurate ”signature” of Banksy’s, and I think they are doing that for a reason.. so that they can’t be sued by the real Banksy were he to show up and take them to court. But that’s just speculation. But the fact remains, Fox shows two signatures at the beginning of the intro that are clearly NOT the signature of the graffiti artist known as Banksy and that obvious decision on their part cannot be ignored.
The other thing that makes me feel this is not the work of Banksy is the nature of Banksy’s work juxtaposed with the nature of the owner of the company that produces the Simpsons, Rupert Murdoch.
Murdoch is a Christian Zionist and a globalist, there is no question of that. He uses his global media empire in service to the globalist agenda at every single turn, from supporting the Global Free Market Wars to protecting the bankers of Wall Street. Right now his big-ticket item, Glenn Beck, is working hard to demonize the left in perfect harmony with the neoliberal dems’ effort to do the same (Robert Gibbs recent statements as well as Jon Stewart’s “Million Moderate March” supported by non other than the Huffington Post who unquestioningly claims this opening sequence is the work of Banksy)
But Banksy’s work is decidedly anti-globalist, anti-imperialist, and anti-Zionist. Does this quote sound like someone who would sell out to Rupert Murdoch just when he needs help demonizing China? “We can’t do anything to change the world until capitalism crumbles. In the meantime we should all go shopping to console ourselves.” Bansky, Wall and Piece
These are samples of Banksy’s work… do you really think Murdoch would give this guy 2 minutes on the opening of his flagship tv show?
I find it hard to believe that Rupert Murdoch would allow one of his programs to air the real work of someone like Banksy. Not only does it not fit with Murdoch’s agenda, it certainly doesn’t follow that Banksy would help Murdoch out at a time like this. It’s not his signature, it’s not his tone. I don’t think it’s Banksy’s work.
Just in time to help the globalists
Right now the IMF and the World Bank are doing everything they can to undermine the growing wave of protectionism in the world markets. Nations all over the globe are thinking about restricting foreign capital and harnessing the “free trade” virus that helped destroy dozens of economies. It’s a dangerous time for the globalists and China stands out as a particular sore spot for them.
Headlines this weekend have been littered with calls for policymakers to do something about this “beggar thy neighbor” policies of the Fed to remedy US economic woes. From Bloomberg Finance Leaders Call for IMF Role in Averting Protectionist `Currency War’ From Moody’s, IMF, G-20 Must Confront Global Disequilibrium and A Return to Competitive Devaluation?
Note the headlines do not point to the US/Fed as being the bad actors here that must confront the global disequilibrium. And if you read the articles behind the headlines you will find some evidence of finger-pointing at the Chinese. Certainly the Chinese are exploiting some beggar thy neighbor policies as well. But the finger-pointing at China is exaggerated and oversimplifies the increasing global currency imbalances being amplified by the Fed. Benzinga
The long-standing debate between China and the US is again at a flashpoint, while Japan is aggrieved that China’s central bank is pushing up the value of the yen. The Austrailian
Has the time for a currency war with China arrived? The answer looks increasingly to be yes. The politics and economics of an assault on Chinese exchange rate policy are increasingly convincing. The idea is, of course, deeply disturbing. But I no longer believe there is an alternative. Financial Times
There is no question that China is moving away from the globalist integration run by the international bankers whom our government obviously serves. And now, all of a sudden, the Simpsons run an opening segment demonizing China’s inhumane industry?… the same industrial model they have been quietly supporting for decades. It’s not a coincidence. Remember, it was just a year ago when globalist Hilary Clinton went to China and stated that human rights violations take a back seat to economic considerations.
But in contrast she offered a conciliatory hand of friendship to Mr Kim’s ally China, contradicting hostile policies both she and President Barack Obama promised during their presidential campaigns last year.
She said she would continue to press China on issues such as human rights and Tibet, but added: “Our pressing on those (human rights) issues can’t interfere on the global economic crisis, the global climate change crisis and the security crisis.” Telegraph
Simpsons probably animated in North Korean sweat shops since the very beginning
With all this aside, the ultimate hypocrisy is not that the Simpsons are now demonizing China for their clear violations of human rights in an effort to actually HELP the globalist agenda, but rather it’s the fact that 20th Century Fox doesn’t actually make their trademark show in China, but rather, they probably make it in North Korea, in clear violation of our sanctions.
North Korea is well known for its nuclear ambitions. But it is relatively little-known fact that the country is a hidden outsourcing mecca for the international animation industry, producing such well-known movies as The Lion King.
Even while North Korea has been under US-led sanctions that include a ban on commercial trade, several US animated films have allegedly been outsourced to the country, according to Beijing-based businessman Jing Kim, who says he was involved with American animation producer Nelson Shin’s filmmaking…
Shin, a 67-year-old Korean-born American, is best known for the television cartoon series The Simpsons, which was actually drawn in Seoul by a team of animators led by him since its premiere in 1989….
… China-born Kim, 47, has been doing business with North Korea for nearly 20 years and owns a restaurant in Pyongyang. Through his company in Singapore, where he holds a resident permit, Kim used to sell North Korean products to South Korea during a period when direct commerce between the two ideologically opposed neighbors was not possible….
… Shin, who heads Seoul-based AKOM Production, a unit of KOAA Film in Los Angeles, allegedly outsourced to North Korea part of the animation contracts that his firm had originally received from the United States.
…But Kim declined to name the US films, citing the sanctions imposed on North Korea. “If the names of the US companies are known, they will be screwed,” said Kim.
Kim said “many people will be hurt” if he went into details, adding, “We worked very carefully.”
When asked whether the US film companies involved actually knew that their cartoons had been made by North Koreans, Kim said: “They don’t want to know. If they knew, it wouldn’t be fun. After they make contracts with the South Koreans, they just assume that it is made there. They only care about the delivery [of the products] and their quality. It is too much for them to ask where they were actually made. We don’t have the obligation to tell them, either. The only thing they claim is the copyright.” Asia Times
As is often the case, when you see something like this broadcast on national television, you have to take a step back and look at it for what it really is. If the “good people” at the Simpsons really wanted to do something about globalization and the working conditions of the animators of their show, they probably would have done something about it, say, 20 years ago, BEFORE they all became exceedingly wealthy on the backs of all those workers.
But instead what we get is a simplistic platitude offered up, just at the time when U.S. globalist policy makers are targeting China for their developing protectionist policies, not North Korea where the show is actually made, and all under the fraudulent “street cred” of a borrowed “Banksy” anti-globalist reputation.
Sorry. I don’t buy it. And neither should you.