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From the Archives | Socialism: Our Alternative To The Madness Of The Market

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Workers must take control of the economy’s productive resources, and this will require a massive struggle, animated by a vision of a different kind of society.

Eric RuderSocialist Worker / Dandelion Salad

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http://evergreenedigest.org/sites/default/files/Editor%20Comment%20icon_0.jpg Originally published Sept. 2, 2012 by Eric Ruder, Socialist Worker <SocialistWorker.org>, August 30, 2012.

June 3,2018 | The World economy is still suffering from the worst crisis since the Great Depression of the 1930s. Around the world, the consequences have been devastating–jobs wiped out, exploitation intensified for those who remain employed, social services eliminated or privatized.

Welcome to 21st-century capitalism, a topsy-turvy world in which poverty for many and unimaginable wealth for a tiny few stand side by side. But unlike in earlier times, when slave and feudal societies weren’t efficient enough to adequately feed, clothe and house everyone in society, today’s crisis is the result of an overabundance of material goods, not the lack of them.

Eric Ruder, a writer and socialist living in Chicago, is regular contributor to the International Socialist Review (ISR).

Full story …

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Help enlighten others. Be sure to pass this on to friends and kin. We must break the system's  ability to lie with impunity.

 

Section(s): 

Privatization is Killing Us: Dispatches from the Capitalist War on Society

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Photo by Giuseppe Milo | CC BY 2.0

All that can be predicted with certainty is that unless the generations now living devote their very existence to the Resistance, humanity won’t have much of a future.

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Bold, upfront, objective and reader supported.



Chris Wright, Counterpunch

http://www.yourdictionary.com/images/articles/lg/2852.EconomicRecession.jpgMay 2, 2018 | As the capitalist elite continues to pour ever more resources into its crusade to dismantle society, it’s important to keep a tally of the damage done—if only to direct popular attention to where it’s needed most, and to where the Left’s own resources are needed most. High on the list of capitalist priorities, and thus of priorities for left-wing resistance, is the goal to privatize everything from education to nature to policing and soldiering. With that in mind, here’s a list of some recent “negative externalities” of privatization that I’ve culled from news sources.

Children, teachers, and rat feces

Let’s start with Rahm Emanuel’s Chicago, jewel of neoliberalism. In February 2014, the Chicago Public Schools decided to outsource management of custodians to Aramark and SodexoMAGIC. The rationale for privatization is supposed to be that it cuts costs and improves “efficiency” or effectiveness. Left unsaid is the means by which costs are cut: primarily from the fact that private companies have a freer hand than government in treating employees viciously. It’s easier for corporations to lay off employees, reduce wages and benefits, degrade working conditions, and destroy unions than it is for governments to do so, since corporations are totalitarian institutions. Whether the overall deal is a net financial gain for government is a difficult question, to which studies have given conflicting answers. Some have found that it actually ends up costing more money in the long run, while others have concluded privatization may in some cases yield savings of about 10 percent. But these reports don’t factor in all the extra costs, such as the time and money it takes to review proposals by companies, negotiate contracts, review contract terms, deal with the inevitable lawsuits, etc.
And then there are the costs to the public, which, of course, don’t count.

Chris Wright has a Ph.D. in U.S. history from the University of Illinois at Chicago, and is the author of Notes of an Underground Humanist, Worker Cooperatives and Revolution: History and Possibilities in the United States, and Finding Our Compass: Reflections on a World in Crisis.

Full story … 

Related:

VA Officials Continue to Discuss Proposed Health-Care Changes Out of Public View. Suzanne Gordon <> American Prospect / Portside

https://portside.org/sites/default/files/styles/large/public/field/image/vahospital112517.jpgUSA Today

  • As Louis Celli, a top staffer for the American Legion, told the Associate Press, a merger would siphon off funds from VHA hospitals and clinics and eventually shift costs directly to veterans, through co-pay and other possible fee increases.
  • Related: ‘Who the hell is this person?’ Trump’s Mar-a-Lago pal stymies VA project.

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Section(s): 

At the Fed, the Scene Is Being Set for Financial Disaster

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Donald Trump with Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell at the White House. (Reuters / Carlos Barria)

  • When politicians and regulators are asleep at the wheel, sooner or later it’s the rest of us who will suffer. Because of the collusion that’s gone on and continues to go on among the world’s main central banks, that problem is now an international one.
  • Related: I’m a Depression historian. The GOP tax bill is straight out of 1929.

Nomi Prins, TomDispatch.com / the Nation

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April 26, 2018 | Warning: What you are about to read is not about Russia, the 2016 election, or the latest person to depart from the White House in a storm of tweets. It’s the Beltway story with trillions of dollars in play and an economy to commandeer, hiding in plain sight.

While we’ve been bombarded with a litany of scandals from the Oval Office and the Trump family, there’s a crucial institution in Washington that few in the media seem to be paying attention to, even as President Trump quietly makes it his own. More obscure than the chambers of the Supreme Court, it’s a place where he has already made substantial changes. I’m talking about the Federal Reserve. 

Nomi Prins is the author of Collusion: How Central Bankers Rigged the World, forthcoming from Nation Books May 1. She is also the author of All the Presidents’ Bankers: The Hidden Alliances that Drive American Power.

Full story … 

Related:

I’m a Depression historian. The GOP tax bill is straight out of 1929. Robert S. McElvaine, Washington (DC) Post

https://img.washingtonpost.com/wp-apps/imrs.php?src=https://img.washingtonpost.com/rf/image_960w/2010-2019/WashingtonPost/2012/12/20/National-Economy/Images/AP2910240251356031158.jpg&w=1484 People gather on the subtreasury building steps across from the New York Stock Exchange in New York on “Black Thursday” on Oct. 24, 1929. The Great Depression followed thereafter. (AP)

Republicans are again sprinting toward an economic cliff.
The plain fact that the trickle-down approach has never worked leaves Republicans unfazed.
Related: Revolution Ahead for U.S. if GOP Tax Plan Rigged for the Rich Is Not Defeated.

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Section(s): 

Special Project | Capitalism Unmasked, Week Ending April 20, 2018

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Is Capitalism in Crisis? Latest Trends of a System Run Amok * Does Capitalism Work? (2002) * Yanis Varoufakis: Marx predicted our present crisis – and points the way out.

Compiled by David Culver, Ed., Evergreene Digest

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Week Ending April 20, 2018 |

Story 1: Is Capitalism in Crisis? Latest Trends of a System Run Amok, C.J. Polychroniou, Truthout

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Capitalism has always been a highly irrational socioeconomic system, but the constant drive for accumulation has especially run amok in the age of high finance, privatization and globalization. (Image: Pixabay; Edited: JR / TO)

Tuesday, August 1, 2017 | Political polarization is to be expected after a long-lasting structural crisis of capitalism, says David Kotz, author of The Rise and Fall of Neoliberal Capitalism. What remains to be seen is whether the polarization of the current moment will lead to a right-wing nationalist statist regime, a progressive reform of capitalism, or a transition beyond capitalism to socialism.



Story 2: Does Capitalism Work? (2002), Michael Parenti <>, Dandelion Salad <>

https://farm7.staticflickr.com/6054/6247620053_a79c7a9062_z.jpgSeptember 7, 2017 | The myth that capitalism works conveniently ignores reality. In this video, political scientist and activist Michael Parenti debunks this popular myth.
 





Story 3 Yanis Varoufakis: Marx predicted our present crisis – and points the way out,  Yanis Varoufakis, the Guardian

https://i.guim.co.uk/img/media/d8d42a321000836c35a65452b3c8fd8cd691cd8b/0_0_2560_1536/master/2560.jpg?w=1300&q=55&auto=format&usm=12&fit=max&s=c7cb1f05b152238cf5d163cff5314b98Friday, 20 April, 2018 | The Communist Manifesto foresaw the predatory and polarised global capitalism of the 21st century. But Marx and Engels also showed us that we have the power to create a better world. 



 



 


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Capitalism as Obstacle to Equality and Democracy: the US Story

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  • Not only the Republican Party, but also the Democratic Party support, serve and reinforce the capitalism that stands as a basic obstacle to economic equality and democracy.
  • Related: 35 soul-crushing facts about American income inequality
  • Related: 'There's an Alternative to the Top-Down Capitalist Corporation.'

Richard D. Wolff, CounterPunch

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http://evergreenedigest.org/sites/default/files/Richard%20Wolff%20%7C%20Capitalism%27s%20Crisis%20Deepens%20cover%20illus.jpgFebruary 23, 2018 | The Cold War displaced the legacies of the New Deal. Time and Trump are now displacing Cold War legacies. Where capitalism was questioned and challenged in the 1930s and into the 1940s, doing that became taboo after 1948. Yet in the wake of the 2008 crash, critical thought about capitalism resumed. In particular one argument is gaining traction: capitalism is not the means to realize economic equality and democracy, it is rather the great obstacle to their realization.

The New Deal, forced on the FDR regime from below by a coalition of unionists (CIO) and the political left (two socialist parties and one communist party), reversed the traditional direction (to greater inequality) of income and wealth distributions in the US. They shifted toward greater equality. US history thus illustrates Thomas Piketty’s argument in his 2014 Capital in the 21st Century about long-term deepening of inequality that can be punctuated by interruptions. Indeed, the New Deal reversal was such an interruption and featured just the sorts of taxation of corporations and the rich that Piketty favors now to correct/reverse capitalist inequalities.

Richard D. Wolff is the author of Capitalism Hits the Fan and Capitalism’s Crisis Deepens. He is founder of Democracy at Work.

Full story … 

Related:

35 soul-crushing facts about American income inequality, Larry Schwartz,  AlterNet  / Salon 

The money given out in Wall Street bonuses last year was twice the amount all minimum-wage workers earned combined
 

'There's an Alternative to the Top-Down Capitalist Corporation.' Richard David Wolff, Fairness & Accuracy in Reporting (FAIR)

Janine Jackson interviewed Richard Wolff about questioning economic fundamentals for the February 9, 2018, episode of CounterSpin. This is a lightly edited transcript.
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