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
Friday, April 1, 2011
Socialism In America [satire]
I think I would have entitled this piece, "Politics in America". To be sure, the right-wing still uses "socialism" as an epitaph, but just as frequently they focus on runaway government spending. And the latter always refers to spending on health care, education, libraries, single mothers, etc--not on war spending measures to promote industries that produce killing machines ("defense spending"). Likewise, the right-wing fail to mention the bailouts of mega-banks and other corporations, and fail to mention that tax revenues have shrunk due to the many tax breaks given to the rich and their corporations over the last 40 years.
Another point in the article was that the town was "trying to lure a factory or two to Pleasantville by offering them a fifty year exemption on all taxes....". This illustrates an important truth about all public entities across the country: they are all competing over jobs which are controlled by corporations who are free to go anywhere in the world that offers them the best deal in terms of wages, taxes, infrastructure, low or unenforced environmental laws, etc. We are all now at the mercy of international corporations. The system of capitalism has created these monstrosities.