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, January 31, 2014

An Idea Not Worth Spreading

Click here to access article by Don Quijones from his blog Raging Bull-Shit.

The author points out how one TED speaker's observations that conflicted with a core belief of capitalists was censored from TED's website. This type of censorship, of course, is very common among all gatekeepers of ideas and observations throughout our capitalist society in order to insure a well indoctrinated population that willingly serves a ruling class.

However, the author also suggests a liberal take on things when he makes this statement:
...this situation is likely to deteriorate further as the unholy alliance between our national governments, supranational organizations (such as the IMF and EU), TBTF banks and their agents in the central banks continue to execute policies geared at obliterating what remains of the West’s middle classes.

It’s a crusade that is not only unspeakably destructive, but actually makes zero economics sense, for the simple reason that it’s the middle classes that keep the slow-beating heart of the consumer economy going.
Thus, he has exposed one capitalist myth only to affirm another: the middle classes are indispensable to the running of an economy. Then he follows this with what he believes is a supporting quote from the comic George Carlin. However, I believe that Carlin was consciously talking about a capitalist economy, whereas this author seems to believe that there is no alternative to a "consumer economy", usually referred to as a capitalist economy. 

As I was taught in my sociology classes, the middle class consists of managers, highly skilled professionals and technical people. These people are truly indispensable to running a capitalist society. But their relationship to capitalists, who constitute the ruling class, is very much like the African-American concept of one type of slave relationship with the master of the house or plantation that existed in our period of slavery. There was a "house nigger" which I think metaphorically describes the middle class, and then there were "field niggers" which describes the rest of us. This distinction was clearly explained by Malcolm X who began his essay with this:
There was two kind of slaves. There was the house negro and the field negro. The house negro, they lived in the house, with master. They dressed pretty good. They ate good, cause they ate his food, what he left. They lived in the attic or the basement, but still they lived near their master, and they loved their master, more than their master loved himself.