MEDIA: ADBUSTERS - AN EXPERT'S VIEW. A good premise is ruined by the pseudo philosophies of writers from hell, Chris Powell believes

Don't be mis-sold, not a single ad is busted in Adbusters. In fact, the smart art direction of this glossy £4-a-go magazine looks remarkably like those Harvey Nicks ads. But the words are not smart.

Here's a (I think perfectly fair) sample: "But if all humans have psychic defenses against difficult truths, American culture exploits that love of fantasy to distract us away from greedy destructiveness and towards unthinking consumption" - page after page of such dense rambling.

It's a pity, as the editors do have a point, which is roughly that we are losing touch with the natural in an orgy of consumer capitalism and that, because of the huge military and financial power of the US, what has happened in the West is happening around the globe.

This magazine - its 47th issue, but its first to appear (no doubt as part of its fiendish plan of globalisation) in the UK - comes from Vancouver.

It describes itself as the "Journal of the mental environment" and it will, indeed, drive you mental. This issue particularly focuses on the "nightmare of reason". The effect of a read is to make you cry out for more reason.

Most of it is quite unreadably muddled pseudo philosophy: the "power structure (ranging from the 200 largest multinational corporations to the Pentagon) in interlocking yet diffuse, dictatorial yet anonymous, ubiquitous yet placeless ... Its ideological strategy, beside which Bin Laden's is a fairytale, is to undermine the existent so that everything collapses into its special version of the virtual ..."

There are, however, a few shafts of sunlight. A lovely short piece about a man who, realising that the petals he is hoovering from his patio come from his cherry tree, proceeds to hoover the whole tree.

A nice visual of a year's cycle as measured by natural events, compared to the cycle as measured by the artifice of work and consumption - spring and harvest moon compared to Superbowl and Labour Day.

A great quote from The storming of the accountants: "The 18th century mathematical prodigy Jedediah Buxton, when asked if he had enjoyed a performance of Richard III, could say only that the actors had spoken 12,445 words." But these pieces of fun are drowned in an ocean of tedium.

Adbusters is produced by: "A loose network of artists, writers, environmentalists, ecologists, media teachers ..." That is, the same rag bag of the muddled who wander around every 1 May and every global economic summit. They lack any coherent philosophy, but are unhappy with the way things are. They need a Karl Marx, or at least a Galbraith to give some logic to their thoughts.

Adbusters looks a bit like Creative Review, though with the writers from hell.

Publisher: Adbusters Media Foundation

Frequency: Bi-monthly

Cover price: £4

UK print run: 15,000

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