Over several days I made calls to Sean at Skellig Boats.
“Hello Sean, How’s it looking today for the crossing?”
“There’ll be no sailing today, there’s a terrible swell.”
I never made that trip!
The Skellig Rocks are towering sea crags some 8 miles off the Kerry coast in South West Ireland. They have UNESCO World Heritage status. Skellig Michael is the site of a 6th century monastic settlement annually attracting pilgrims and tourists, weather permitting, whilst the Skelligs are one of Irelands largest breeding colonies for many species of seabird, Gannets, Kittiwakes and Puffins, to name a few. This is the chosen location of Disney LucasFilm to shoot scenes for the interminable Star Wars saga.
The Minister of the Arts, Heather Humphreys in a cloak-and-dagger application submitted at 5pm Friday and issued 9am Monday granted a license to Disney LucasFilm. The license permitted Disney Corp. to fly helicopter sorties around the Skelligs which last year caused a large number of fledglings to be swept to their death. The Corp. has returned to shoot further scenes for the sequel with an initial estimate of 30 sorties per day, landing actors and equipment on the site.
The potential for further desecration to the unique site goes unsaid. Disney LucasFilm manifesto in an eggshell is profit for investors, with a ‘loaves and fishes’ miracle concession for the Irish economy. Interestingly there is a restriction on tourist numbers visiting Skellig Michael in any year but the mighty mammon overrides all restrictions, and the potential for aficionado tourist interest in the site will increase exponentially with the release of the film.
Riding roughshod over people, nature and heritage is prevalent in the Corp. mindset and can be witnessed in the osmosis to the psyche of Dream Factory progeny. The battle of Malibu, where the breed-apart occupants of the beachfront houses lay claim to the beach itself, employing security and signage to enforce an illegal ban on non-residents walking the beach, i.e. the land between high and low tide.
The notion of ownership is pervasive and expansive in the rarified atmosphere of the corporate bubble. The beneficiaries, an ever decreasing percentage of humanity, believe and propagate this notion of ownership, privilege, and privacy on their terms to the detriment of a positive human experience for all human beings.