Ever since the existence of a campingflight to Lowlands paradise, I have been a loyal visitor of this wonderful festival (ever since I was 14, that’s 17 years ago). I believe this 3 day- (and to the hardcore Lowlander a 5 day-) event creates some enchanting magic: it gives people an opportunity to see the bands they love and to submerge in a mind-blowing experience that transcends every penny this wonderful organization charges.
Recently, dark clouds appeared and clogged the skies above the cultural sector in our humble little country of the Netherlands. Budget deficits created by the current economic reality that we live in made our new and predominantly right wing government decide to raise taxes on cultural engagements from 6% to a whopping 19% per January 1 2011. Their free-market capitalist ideology has complete confidence that it will only strengthen the cultural sector. After all, economics over the past century (and more) have been dominated by the Darwinists’ point of view: only the fittest will survive.
In a counter reaction, the organisation of a Campingflight to Lowlands Paradise (Mojo concerts) started presales in September 2010 to avoid the tax raise: a political statement opposing the new government policy and a warm gesture to the loyal Lowlands visitors. A move to be applauded for…
More than 60.000 tickets were sold in two mere hours.
But that’s not all. Clouds kept spreading. A couple of years ago, a different breed of companies popped up: ticket resellers. This breed of companies is the exponent of, again, the free-market capitalist ideology and takes the old Keynesian model at its’ very core (I would’ve said takes it at its’ heart, but I couldn’t discover such a thing): supply vs. demand. Basic thought: high demand and scarce supplies will lead to higher prices and thus economic value. They buy a huge amount of tickets and resell them for ridiculous amounts to the ones that really love this festival. And herein unfolds the immoral character of the free-market. It creates greed & immorality. Even worse, it creates companies motivated by greed and guided by immorality.
I was among the (one of the many) people that missed out on the initial presale. So I bought a ticket from one of these immoral, greedy companies (erratum: I should say people), www.onlineticketshop.nl, for an absurd amount of 300 euro ($435. Twice the price of the actual amount. Their deceptive slogan? “The best tickets for real fans”. Yeah, right. Please rethink and realize their true intent). But happy I was. I finally got a ticket. After all, the Lowlands experience isn’t about the amount of money you pay for it. I would’ve probably paid at least quadruple this amount.
Only recently I have realized something very fundamental.
“Is it more important that once again I engage in these 5 days of magic, which I would love, or is it more important that I take a stand against this immoral breed of companies because I believe that things have to change?”
My answer is razor-sharp and clear. I want to transform this society from an economy that is solely based on money to an economy that thrives on the amalgamation gift and money. With this intent in mind, I will wholeheartedly give away my ticket. As a first step to realize this greater cause. Starting by myself.
(Unfortunately I can only give away one ticket, as my funds are insufficient buy tickets for you all. If they were, I would. I will randomly pick one of you this Wednesday (18:00, watch your inbox) so that you can pick up the ticket at my place just the day before the fun starts! Yeah, go on thursday, it’s fun)
Update Thursday 18th: the ticket goes to Lisette van Marle from the lovely city of Zwolle.
Lisette, enjoy the magic and keep us posted!