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

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Why Millions March in France, But Not in the US [Prize offered for best answer]

by Rick Wolff from MR Zine

By merely blaming the left in the US, the author really doesn't answer the implied question in the title. But the article does report on the fight-backs by European workers (see this and this) which is almost totally missing in US media, and there are gems in the article like this:
Lenders to governments threaten to stop lending or even to pull their loans unless governments guarantee that they will pay interest on all their new debts as well as repay them.  The guarantee that lenders everywhere demand is the same: governments must set aside funds -- by either raising new taxes or cutting government payrolls and spending -- that will go to the lenders.
So let me get this straight...sections of the capitalist class through their derivative housing scam created the economic collapse and many lost money in the process. Many were financial institutions who made bets on these phony derivatives and lost a lot of money and, because they were too big to fail, the tax payers had to bail them out. Now the winners in this scam won't lend the taxpayers, who had to borrow to bail out the loser banksters, any more money unless government slashes all public/social spending (of course, not military spending). And they want their reduced Bush tax rates continued! (I think my head hurts.)

Meanwhile on Mainstreet USA unemployed working people are applying for food stamps and fighting off foreclosures on their homes, young people who can't afford higher education go into the military, and the elderly worry about cuts to their Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid.

Anyway, to brighten up this piece, I am offering a prize to the viewer of my blog who provides the best explanation for the puzzle posed by the title of this article. The prize is a DVD entitled, "Capitalism Hits the Fan". Contest ends Sunday, Sept. 12 at midnight (Seattle time).