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
Sunday, January 6, 2019
Does Socialism Affect Freedom?
Harvey, in my opinion, engages in a long, complicated discussion of the merits of freedom under some kind of socialism versus that of capitalism. Of course, our capitalist masters insure that we all receive indoctrination in the merits of freedom under capitalism and the lack of freedom under socialism.
To me it is very simple. The system of capitalism in which everything must be produced or created in order to be bought and sold for profit provides abundant benefits (all kinds of freedom and an elevated standard of living including access to education and health care) for those who have large amounts of money already.
People of the latter description became numerous in the 17th and 18th centuries and took control of leading nations and established capitalism in those countries which they expanded it to nearly all countries. Because they enjoyed radically different opportunities, standards of living, and enormous influence, they became known as a social-economic class of capitalists or bourgeoisie. In other words, their system which gave this class of people power over societies in addition to all kinds of opportunities for an abundant lifestyle, also put the majority of people essentially in bondage to these powerful people. But, why should a system exist to benefit for only one small group of people at the disadvantage of the vast majority???
True to his British heritage of favoring only mild reforms to capitalism, Harvey insists that only the basic necessities of a society should be socialized. He repeats this a number of times. Harvey along with many other fake socialists do not want an end to capitalism, but only reforms to the system in order to rid it of its worst consequences, but not a system that promotes the welfare and freedoms for all people. (That is precisely why he and other milder "socialists" like Richard Wolff are tolerated as professors teaching classes at American universities.) The system he and others like him favor has a name: social democracy. Like so many concepts nowadays, this is a prettied-up euphemism for a reformed capitalism.