Branding, as we have seen, is a balloon economy: it inflates with astonishing rapidity but it is full of hot air. It shouldn't be surprising that this formula has bred armies of pin-wielding critics, eager to pop the corporate balloon and watch the shreds fall to the ground. The more ambitious a company has been in branding the cultural landscape, and the more careless it has been in abandoning works, the more likely it is to have generated a silent battalion of critics waiting to pounce. Moreover, the branding formula leaves corporations wide open to the most obvious tactic in the activist arsenal: bringing a brand's production secrets crashing into its marketing image. It's a tactic that has worked before.
Naomi Klein, "No Logo", pg 345
As I continue to read through Naomi Klein's book, it is amazing how many religious like tendencies she, and perhaps the neo-humanist movement she represents, espouse. For instance, the quote above, as well as most of the book, seem to show that one of the prime focusses of counter-culture styled groups is showing the establishment how wrong they are. Despite appearances, it really does seem that a prime interest is in proving others wrong. Obviously this in couched in more positive terms; minority rights, prevention of abuse, overthrow of hegemony, etc. However, there does seem to be a strong sense that the un-informed masses need to be shown how to distinguish between proper concepts of right and wrong.
In reality this seems like a religious like attempt to establish, or maybe just define good and evil. There is an attempt to create an enforceable morality, ostensibly through multiplicative effects of individual choice, where a gradations of right & wrong are rejected in favor of religious like professions of faith. Situational complexity is ignored for a summative judgment of overall effects. The movement Klein represents seems to want to enforce a relatively arbitrary standard of wrong. In many cases, explanations of complexity are only seen as rationalizations that skirt the righteousness of their attack. In this sense, an environment that forces the uniformed masses to choose sides is being created.
Whether we like to believe it, it seems hard to argue against the idea that morality is based on dogmatic preference. Certainly some things are more beneficial for a society than others, but I wonder if much of this isn't due to congruence of standards with societal needs rather than the existence of universal absolutes. This is not to say that absolute standards don't exist, only that in practice we normally deal with a level of morality that extends well beyond this base standard. And so, in practice there is a very real fight for litmus tests that define what is right and what is wrong. Choices contrary to dogmatic standards become seen as uniformed unless they either acknowledge or reject certain litmus tests. In this sense, it is the focus of opinions as right, wrong or uniformed that is so similar to religious like tendencies.