We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore Lappé, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up

Monday, April 18, 2016

Review: ‘The Measure of a Man,’ a Tale of a Man’s Lost Labor

Click here to access article by Manohla Dargis from The NY Times.

Here is a film featuring a main character that many of us can identify with. Bush's "ownership society" played out to enrich the One Percent, bankrupted the banks which were subsequently bailed out by us, causing unemployment to skyrocket and since then has disappeared many off the unemployment rolls and others onto low paid future-less jobs. This film is about a character who is in the latter situation.  
Midway through the quiet emotional storms in the French drama “The Measure of a Man,” the hero, Thierry, begins working as a supermarket security guard. It’s a bitter victory. There is little that’s secure about the job, which requires Thierry to view not just every customer but also each employee as a potential thief. Supplemented with the trappings of the badly paid — a stifling tie, ill-fitting jacket, squawking walkie-talkie — he embodies 21st-century labor at its most heroically alienated. As he stands and watches, liberty seems a distant promise, as do equality and fraternity.

This is a tragic story about a worker that has been repeated many millions of times over the history of the boom-and-bust system of capitalism. 

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