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I'm sure you've read about how right wing propaganda outfits set up and supported by people like the billionaire Koch brothers spend hundreds of millions of dollars to move their agenda forward... And you've probably heard about how the moneyed elite has also co-opted much of the Left, funding Third-Way (corporatist) Democratic groups.  And then of course, there is the constant barrage of corporate propaganda we are being exposed to 24/7 via the hideous U.S. mainstream media (conglomerate).

Those who are tearing the country apart, the enemies within, destroying our democratic institutions in favor of private profiteering, have it made all the way down the chain of command.  Everybody is getting paid, handsomely.

You see, they (the ruling elite) understand that in order to move their agenda forward they need to pay up.  They need to fund the propaganda machine as well as the mechanisms of control and oppression (like the surveillance police state).  And for them, the investment is worth it, if one is to take stock of the current state of affairs when it comes to democracy in this country, to the issue of unequal distribution of income, to the erosion of economic security (for the middle class), as well as human and constitutional rights, and the rule of law (as in the erosion of equal justice under the law as we have moved towards a two-tiered justice system).

And that's why you see the astroturf grassroots groups (both on the Right and the faux-Left) so well-organized and effective (thus far), which is one of the reasons we continue our descend into repression and exploitation.

This is something I've been thinking about for a long time.  I often think, "How can we find a way to fund and support the resurgent progressive movement effectively?"  I'm fully aware that there are multiple groups all around the country (who are connecting with other groups internationally in the common struggle against the corporate state) doing great work and getting funding from their supporters, but not to the level they need to gain the type of strength necessary to accomplish the main goal: the inevitable take-down of the corporate state.

A while back I read an article by Chris Hedges that touches on this very concept.  Today I re-read the article, and as I did, a few light-bulbs went off in my head, which is the reason I decided to write this diary.

In the truthdig article "The Sparks of Rebellion," Hedges does a masterful job at first, describing the challenges our generation of rebels (against the modern version of tyranny) face, and second, sharing some ideas about the type of infrastructure needed to support their efforts.

The revolutionists of history counted on a mobilized base of enlightened industrial workers. The building blocks of revolt, they believed, relied on the tool of the general strike, the ability of workers to cripple the mechanisms of production. Strikes could be sustained with the support of political parties, strike funds and union halls. Workers without these support mechanisms had to replicate the infrastructure of parties and unions if they wanted to put prolonged pressure on the bosses and the state. But now, with the decimation of the U.S. manufacturing base, along with the dismantling of our unions and opposition parties, we will have to search for different instruments of rebellion.
The emphasis is mine

You see, what he's alluding to is the fact that the corporate state has created the conditions that prevent, or make it extremely difficult, for people to be able to organize effective action against its abuses.  In other words, the system is designed to frustrate and interfere with the steps necessary for the coalescence of the type of support and logistics infrastructure a popular uprising would need in order to succeed.

The most important dilemma facing us is not ideological. It is logistical. The security and surveillance state has made its highest priority the breaking of any infrastructure that might spark widespread revolt. The state knows the tinder is there. It knows that the continued unraveling of the economy and the effects of climate change make popular unrest inevitable. It knows that as underemployment and unemployment doom at least a quarter of the U.S. population, perhaps more, to perpetual poverty, and as unemployment benefits are scaled back, as schools close, as the middle class withers away, as pension funds are looted by hedge fund thieves, and as the government continues to let the fossil fuel industry ravage the planet, the future will increasingly be one of open conflict. This battle against the corporate state, right now, is primarily about infrastructure. We need an infrastructure to build revolt. The corporate state is determined to deny us one.
The emphasis is mine

You see, what I'm trying to illustrate here (which I think it is supported by Hedges' views) is that a lot of what we are seeing taking place when it comes to the proto-fascist legal framework and fast-evolving surveillance police state is based on careful planning, on projections about what's likely to happen in the near future, for obvious reasons.

The state, in its internal projections, has a vision of the future that is as dystopian as mine. But the state, to protect itself, lies. Politicians, corporations, the public relations industry, the entertainment industry and our ridiculous television pundits speak as if we can continue to build a society based on limitless growth, profligate consumption and fossil fuel. They feed the collective mania for hope at the expense of truth. Their public vision is self-delusional, a form of collective psychosis. The corporate state, meanwhile, is preparing privately for the world it knows is actually coming. It is cementing into place a police state, one that includes the complete evisceration of our most basic civil liberties and the militarization of the internal security apparatus, as well as wholesale surveillance of the citizenry.
The emphasis is mine

That right there is key... If you have been following news reports about the UN Climate Summit in Warsaw, Poland, one thing that should jump out at you is that even if we wanted to continue on a path of rampant consumerism and constant "growth," we won't be able to.  Setting aside the real issues of extreme income inequality, the steady loss of our human and constitutional rights, and increased oppression, climate change alone represents a massive brick wall against the destructive and rapacious needs of unfettered capitalism.

What does that mean?  It means that whether we want it or not, we are going to have to start thinking about the "economy" in a complete different way, and soon.  The emphasis will change from rapid and constant growth (i.e, buying a bunch of crap we don't need in order to meet quarterly growth expectations by supranational corporations) to sustainable living.

And that means that the entire economic paradigm in which the corporate state is based will become obsolete.  And this could mean a massive (if temporary) disruption which could include a financial collapse as we transition to a new economic order.

I argue that that's why the security apparatus has put so much effort in trying to suppress an organized popular uprising, and that's why they went after Occupy Wall Street with such vigor.

Occupy articulated the concerns of the majority of citizens. Most of the citizenry detests Wall Street and big banks. It does not want more wars. It needs jobs. It is disgusted with the subservience of elected officials to corporate power. It wants universal health care. It worries that if the fossil fuel industry is not stopped, there will be no future for our children. And the state is using all its power to stymie any movement that expresses these concerns. Documents released under the Freedom of Information Act show Homeland Security, the FBI, the Federal Protective Service, the Park Service and most likely the NSA and the CIA (the latter two have refused to respond to FOIA requests) worked with police across the country to infiltrate and destroy the encampments. There were 7,765 arrests of people in the movement. Occupy, at its peak, had about 350,000 people—or about 0.1 percent of the U.S. population.
The emphasis is mine

So what I'm trying to emphasize here is that we need to prepare for what's likely to happen (please see video below).  And that means not only building coalitions, and promoting unity and solidarity within the ongoing (and fast-spreading) resistance movement, but finding innovative ways of supporting those in the front lines of the struggle.

And this means acting now, not waiting until things "get really bad."  We need to understand that this is a real struggle between the tiny ruling elite (the 1%) and the rest of us, including the fast-shrinking middle class, students, the working class, and the poor.  If we wait until we are all poor, our ability to protect ourselves would have been completely eroded.

As Hedges points out, "It is not the poor who make revolutions. It is those who conclude that they will not be able, as they once expected, to rise economically and socially."

You see, right now there are selfless activists all around this country putting everything on the line.  They are standing up against the undemocratic, secretive, and exploitative Trans-Pacific Partnership trade negotiations, against workers' exploitation by companies like Walmart, and against further destruction of our natural environment by the rapacious greed of corporations (and rampant consumerism).  

In his article, Hedges talks about a conversation he had with Kevin Zeese, co-founder of PopularResistance.org, where he says that "this mass resistance must work on two tracks. It must attempt to stop the machine while at the same time building alternative structures of economic democracy and participatory democratic institutions. It is vital, he said, to sever ourselves from the corporate economy. Money, he said, has to be raised for grass-roots movements..."

The question then is: What is the best way to provide financial support for the grassroots?

One idea would be to follow a funding concept similar to KickStarter... Instead of you getting hit every day with requests for funding from multiple groups (without you knowing how the money is being spent), imagine if you had the ability to visit a website (again, similar to KickStarter) where you could browse through funding requests from activist groups and/or individuals and chose to help fund those you found met your standards (or interest)?

Let me give you an example... If I were to visit such (central) website and read about the activists involved in the fight against the TPP, that would a be a group I would consider sending some money to.  I also like what the Overpass Light Brigade does.  The same thing with Moral Mondays, and the Solidarity Sing Along group.  About Occupy Oakland, or Strike Debt?

People could also choose to fund individual activists... For example, in my forays to multiple protest rallies I've met some of the most selfless and dedicated people I've ever known; people of modest means making huge sacrifices to stand up against injustice.  I can just imagine how much more they could accomplish with a little help from the rest of us.

And the "funding" wouldn't necessarily had to deplete your bank account.  Imagine if all you could afford to contribute was $5.00 but you did so to a group or an individual you found totally worth it of your contribution?  And imagine the impact of 20,000, or 50,000, or 500,000, or 1 million people doing the same thing?

About this?  A union is struggling with contract negotiations and decides to strike... Imagine if thousands of people contributed to a "strike fund?"  And imagine if that became common practice and we started supporting "strike funds" all over the country?

Could these things be a possible answer to the dilemma raised by Chris Hedges in his article?  

What do you think?  I'd love to hear your ideas, get some feedback...

 


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Comment Preferences

  •  Can we coordinate the different causes? (12+ / 0-)

    Tomorrow I try to connect OWS with the Single Payer movement.  I see synergy.  Both movements are evolving and can learn from each other and cooperate.

    I envision a meta-cause, a cause of causes.  Causes made possible by progressive activists doing what they can.  If these cause can act together to win battles and coordinate structural and momentum movements, we can have more impact.

    Daily Kos an oasis of truth. Truth that leads to action.

    by Shockwave on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 12:54:34 AM PST

  •  we have too many issues and not enough focus (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ray Pensador

    the actual movement will need to be disciplined, it will need to determine what is and isn't acceptable

    sadly our own individual situations will probably dictate the causes we eventually follow

    In a time of universal deceit - telling the truth is a revolutionary act.'' George Orwell

    by lostinamerica on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 02:48:15 AM PST

    •  I hear this all the time but I never hear (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      serendipityisabitch, mookins, Wino

      how to actually implement it. "The movement," to the extent that one ca speak of it as a unified thing, is the way it is because of practical matters. It is diffuse, diverse, and decentralized without a hierarchy because previous attempts to organize with hierarchies have failed. I can't tell you how many times I've heard people say exactly what you're saying, for as long as I've been involved certainly.

      But lets not forget that we've gotten to where we are without the hierarchy and discipline that people keep declaring necessary. What does work is getting out there and taking action.

      sadly our own individual situations will probably dictate the causes we eventually follow
      I think that's a good and necessary thing. Certainly, we need to be aware of many issues, but given our individual backgrounds we're going to know more of less about various issues, and we should be working on the issues we know about.
      •  Not to be unneccesarily disagreeable (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Meteor Blades

        but I don't think where we are is all that favorable. Our position is certainly better than it was in heyday of Reaganism or the high tide of Bush II but I think it greatly inferior to what it was in the 60's and early 70's.

        IMO, the last thirty years have been characterized largely by a pattern of self marginalization on the left. To the degree that we have gained any ground in the past decade, it has been primarily due to the bankruptcy and over-reach on the Right rather than any particular organizational or theoretical strengths on our side.

        The new conditions have provided new opportunities and openings for us but we must demonstrate the wit to take advantage of them. This will require new thinking and re-thinking on our part.

        Radical challenges call for radical responses and systemic crisis require systemic systemic solutions.

         

        Nothing human is alien to me.

        by WB Reeves on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 09:17:17 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  We're reactionaries too (3+ / 0-)

        We need a simple, accessible platform. It doesn't have to address everything! Just create a basis for proaction. We will never get anywhere by "responding" ( reacting ) to the right wing. They know that play book. They have the resources to throw more decoys at us than we can possibly deal with. This, by the way, in reverse, was how Nancy Pelosi, much maligned, wrongly, kept the U.S. from descending into utter darkness during Bush II.

        We need to say: "this is what we want to do. Join us."

        And it would be better for all of us as well!

        "When fascism comes to America it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross." Sinclair Lewis

        by Evoculture on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 12:15:35 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  I used to share your view, but I've come to (0+ / 0-)

      realized that it is not necessarily about discipline and focus, but instead unity and solidarity.
       

    •  Discipline (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Hey338Too, lostinamerica

      I'm with you there Mate!

      Being a revolutionary means accepting accountability, being disciplined, and assessing yourself based on results. There are way too many dilettantes out there who are just wannabe left versions of Ted Cruz. We need to assess one another by effectiveness, not image.

      "When fascism comes to America it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross." Sinclair Lewis

      by Evoculture on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 12:20:31 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I think your last few paragraphs are describing (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Adam B, DRo, Hey338Too

    Daily Kos pretty well. A place to come and find out what various groups and activists are doing, along with links for those individuals and groups that are willing to accept donations, and looking for volunteers. You haven't named any groups, I think, that I haven't seen named and described here. That there is also other content on the site doesn't necessarily get in the way of the scenario you're describing, it's more likely to promote it by bringing in a wider audience that may be inclined to support various causes.

    And it leaves the giving, for the most part, as a private act between the donor and the recipient, which, in view of your opinions on the surveillance state would seem to be a very positive thing.

    At least half the future I've been expecting hasn't gotten here yet. Sigh.... (Yes, there's gender bias in my name; no, I wasn't thinking about it when I signed up. My apologies.)

    by serendipityisabitch on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 03:22:58 AM PST

  •  Maybe instead of a centralized registry of (4+ / 0-)

    CAUSES, you have a centralized registry for particular actions or efforts by those causes.

    So if we want to plaster Oakland with "Big Brother is Watching" signs and need $100 to do that we make an entry, sort of like some of the microloan sites I've seen.

    One problem is tax responsibility.  Another is verification.  Did we really plaster Oakland with BBiW signs or did someone use the $100 to have a nice meal with his friends?

    •  Yes, that is an excellent idea. I's something I've (0+ / 0-)

      written about. We could fund particular projects as well. Regarding verification, the way I see it people would build rapport with each other. For example, from what I know about what you do, I would feel very comfortable in trusting any contribution I make would be put to good use. But funders could set their own requirements.

  •  Yay Ray! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ray Pensador, Wino

    Good morning and greetings from the Other Left Coast on the right hand side of the map.  
     I hear commercial establishments fear Holiday sales will not be so great this year.  I hope those who would concentrate too much in the bank accounts and portfolios of too few will get a clue, before too many of my fellow 98% suffer irreparable harm.  
     Are they really that ignorant of American history, or do they think 1928 was a one off thing?
     I'm spending my charitable giving helping local people keep their heads above water, and what time I can I spend showing up for protests and marches, if only to prove to myself that I haven't given up.  
     Any ideas on how we can remind the citizens of the ultimate outcome of income inequality?  

    "The light which puts out our sight is darkness to us." Thoreau

    by NancyWH on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 07:08:25 AM PST

  •  Money is the problem (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ray Pensador, AoT

    And that got me to thinking about the nature of money. Why is a Federal Reserve Note money and other pieces of paper not money. Federal law prohibits states from issuing it's own currency. But it does not prohibit cities, towns, businesses or even individuals from doing so. There are only two conditions: 1) It must not resemble federal currency. 2) It must be convertible into federal currency because you are still required to pay income tax on earnings paid in other currency. I have thought that maybe the solution to untangling ourselves from the corporate global economy would be to start moving back towards local economies issuing local currencies. Of course this would pose many problems and it would not be possible to completely split from federal currency, but it would be a start. And yes, I am aware that this is a Libertarian idea, but I am no Libertarian. I am a socialist.

    Play chess for the Kossacks on Chess.com. Join the site, then the group at http://www.chess.com/groups/view/kossacks.

    by rmonroe on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 07:59:58 AM PST

    •  The key is definitely to untangle ourselves (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      rmonroe, Wino

      from the corporate economy in favor of local economies.  Adding to your idea of local currencies, there is also the concept of barter, volunteerism, time banks, etc.  I think it is important that we start thinking (and experimenting) along these lines.

    •  Re (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      FG, serendipityisabitch, fcvaguy
      I have thought that maybe the solution to untangling ourselves from the corporate global economy would be to start moving back towards local economies issuing local currencies.
      How do you envision this working without massive losses in living standards?

      Your area exports something of value and imports all the rest. Other areas will not export to you without you providing them equal value in goods and services.

      I've heard these "local currency" schemes before, but someone has to do the math about the results. "Freeing us from the corporate state" sounds great on paper. It sounds less great when your average living standard gets cut in half due to lack of inputs of things provided by the "corporate state".

      (-5.50,-6.67): Left Libertarian
      Leadership doesn't mean taking a straw poll and then just throwing up your hands. -Jyrinx

      by Sparhawk on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 10:50:47 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Generally speaking, countries with the least (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Sparhawk, FG, fcvaguy

        International trade generally have the lowest standard of living.

        The most important way to protect the environment is not to have more than one child.

        by nextstep on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 11:25:37 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  I often ask that same question of those who (5+ / 0-)

        want to "break up the corporations" and replace them with small businesses (a staple, oddly, of both the libertarian loons and of the anti-corporate left). How the hell can a little mom and pop shop have the resources to build intercontinental communications satellite networks, or jumbo jets, or to import raw materials from Zimbabwe?  Those things require the resources of huge economic entities, and returning the level of economic organization to the local small-scale level of the 1850's will do nothing more than return living standards to that of the 1850's too. I doubt you'll get many people to agree to that.

        I have no desire for smaller corporations, any more than I desire smaller government. What I want is DEMOCRACY--in both governments and corporations.  It ain't their size that matters--it's who gets to run them that matters.

        In the end, reality always wins.

        by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 12:21:44 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  People find all kinds of ways to kiss up to the (0+ / 0-)

          corporate state, in prostrated submission...

          You've posted here quite a few messages, the great majority of which are utterly nonsense, and have very little to do with the theme of the diary.

          The real issue is predation, unfettered capitalism, unquenchable greed, influence-peddling corruption, and the resulting oppression and exploitation.

          And the understanding that the expectation of unlimited growth based on rampant consumerism is unsustainable.

          Now, you come in here spewing all this nonsense, engaging in nasty comments, etc., but nobody cares.  You want to call yourself the real deal when it comes to organizing, fine.  Let it be in your own head...

          All you've done here is add some noise, nothing else of value.

          •  obviously, Ray, I work for the CIA (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Sparhawk, Hey338Too

            (sigh)

            In the end, reality always wins.

            by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 01:01:33 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Lenny, you're just adding noise. Do you have (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              ZhenRen

              anything to say about the Chris Hedges article?  Re-read your posts here, Lenny.  Just nonsense noise.  I really don't care who you work for or why you post this nonsense.  I'm just pointing out it is nonsense.  That's all.

              •  And look at his personal self-description (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Ray Pensador

                From his membership page:

                Former organizer for Greenpeace and Sierra Club, longtime IWW member, Occupier, general commie socialist anarchist radical agitator. ;) Interests are history and science.
                This fellow is... rather bizarrely conflicted.

                So, we're to beleive he is an Anarchist, an IWW member in support of the hierarchical, top down, runaway authority of corporations?

                An Occupier in support of one of the most protected instruments of Wall Street, the multi-national corporation?

                He asks how we could live without them? He mistakes the issue of size for the manner of organization. The only reason they need to be so large is because they are conglomerates of many subsidiaries, all controlled for vast economic power, with larger economies than some nations, so as to compete in the rarefied echelons of the global movers and shakers. They rule the planet.

                Shit... who is this guy? IWW is heavily woven out of anarcho-syndicalist threads. Corporations would be worker run, and horizontally self-managed by workers.

                Corporations, and their shareholders, and insulation from liability, their status as persons, their protected class that rapes the environment, serving by law not the people, not the betterment of humankind, but the profiteering of the shareholders and owning class, would never be defended by any anarchist or IWW member.

                Who is this guy???

                "In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

                by ZhenRen on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 01:26:30 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Okay, read more of his comments below (2+ / 0-)

                  Much better position than I first perceived.

                  "In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

                  by ZhenRen on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 01:42:55 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  is that an apology . . .? Or, like (0+ / 0-)

                    most of the leftists I've known, would you rather die than admit you were wrong about anything . . .

                    In the end, reality always wins.

                    by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 01:58:22 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                  •  Indeed! What I find amazing is that this type (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    ZhenRen

                    of bullshit nonsense keeps happening in this site with total impunity.  Did you see the comment about "weiner-wanking?"  For fucks sake, who are these people?

                    •  hey Zhen, maybe you'd better have a chat with Ray (0+ / 0-)

                      He seems to be missing something . . . . .

                      (snicker)

                      In the end, reality always wins.

                      by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 02:14:15 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                    •  Lots of left bashing and condescension (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Ray Pensador

                      and yet they say they want solidarity. I think some of these are old stalwart Marxists (or something) who have been absorbing rhetoric for a long time, and are impatient with people, thinking all of these issues to be settled.

                      There is an old saying, that when the revolution comes, the activists will be the last to know. Heh. these things happen when they do. I think the best thing we can do is prepare, organize ourselves. The organizations should reflect in structure our ideals, so that when the moment comes, we are ready. In Spain, this is largely what occurred. They already had the CNT/FAI, and were well organized, so that they were at the forefront when the crisis came. So, I think the IWW is a good organization to support. The CNT in spain also had the influence of the FAI, and I think we need more than one organization, some which can influence others in a good direction.

                      So, maybe we could all try a little harder to hear each other? But I do realize this site seems to generate aggressive debate. I've done it too. I'm just too tired today... really tired. And more than miserable in my shitty job.

                      "In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

                      by ZhenRen on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 02:14:46 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Notice the patterns when these things happen. (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        ZhenRen

                        Hardly ever the actual theme of the subject at hand is discussed.  Nasty and abrasive comments are posted right off the bat, and then the rest is predictable... Disruption, etc.

                        You've mentioned a few times that your job is kind of tough, that it saps the energy out of you... I know your time is limited because of it, but I think you have an incredibly in-depth knowledge of non-hierarchical organizations.

                        I'd like to discuss some ideas I have about this with you, at your leisure.

                        I will send you a PM with an outline of what I have in mind and you can reply when you can.  I'm thinking about taking the ideas I share in this diary to an operational level, among other things.

                        •  ohhh, I would SOOOOO very much like to be there (2+ / 1-)
                          Recommended by:
                          serendipityisabitch, Hey338Too
                          Hidden by:
                          ZhenRen

                          to see this . . . . . . .

                          I'm thinking about taking the ideas I share in this diary to an operational level, among other things.
                          Go set 'em all straight, Ray.

                          In the end, reality always wins.

                          by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 02:58:39 PM PST

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  Lenny, why are you so protective of this rotten (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            ZhenRen

                            system, of the status quo?  You seem to go out of your way to protect it, stand up for it.  Did somebody mentioned you were a socialist?  It can't be; that doesn't make any sense if one examines your relentless defense and support of the status quo.

                          •  you're blithering, Ray (0+ / 0-)

                            Talk to me again when you've learned to read.

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 03:05:15 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  in case you've not noticed, Ray-- (0+ / 0-)

                            I don't believe in Ronald Reagan's 11th Commandment.

                            The left is ignored, impotent and powerless because it keeps doing stupid things (such as . .  oh . .  pointing at everyone in sight and yelling "you work for the CIA !!!"). And I will keep pointing out the stupid things until the left stops doing them.

                            Sorry if you don't like that.  (shrug)

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 03:09:08 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Hide rated for general dickish behavior (0+ / 0-)

                            I'm too fatigued to endure this.

                            "In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

                            by ZhenRen on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 03:13:00 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  And now, I have more goddamn work to do (0+ / 0-)

                            Must get out of here.

                            "In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

                            by ZhenRen on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 03:15:45 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  too fatigued to know the rules about HRing (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Hey338Too

                            people you are engaging with either, I see. . . .

                            Notice I didn't HR you for your silly comment about me:

                            Shit... who is this guy? IWW is heavily woven out of anarcho-syndicalist threads. Corporations would be worker run, and horizontally self-managed by workers.

                            Corporations, and their shareholders, and insulation from liability, their status as persons, their protected class that rapes the environment, serving by law not the people, not the betterment of humankind, but the profiteering of the shareholders and owning class, would never be defended by any anarchist or IWW member.

                            Who is this guy???

                            Why didn't I HR you? Because I'm not as petty (or as thin-skinned) as you apparently are.  (shrug)

                            Of course, Ray can always ask all his acolytes not to speak to me. Maybe THAT will help. (snicker)

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 03:17:10 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Uprated. It's provocative, but not HRable. (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Hey338Too

                            At least half the future I've been expecting hasn't gotten here yet. Sigh.... (Yes, there's gender bias in my name; no, I wasn't thinking about it when I signed up. My apologies.)

                            by serendipityisabitch on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 04:59:47 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Of course, you support it (0+ / 0-)

                            You are who you are.

                            "In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

                            by ZhenRen on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 06:41:30 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  uh oh, another heretic . . . . . (0+ / 0-)

                            What ya gonna do, Your Holiness--revoke his membership card in the Anarchists Of America Club too . . .?

                            (snicker)

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Sun Nov 24, 2013 at 03:59:08 AM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                      •  I'm a leftist, remember? (0+ / 0-)

                        Or are we now back to "you work for the CIA !!!!" again  . . .

                        Too funny.

                        In the end, reality always wins.

                        by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 02:56:31 PM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Lenny (0+ / 0-)

                          I won't spend time locating the comment, but I recall one you made the other day which openly ridiculed anarchists. I really do wonder just what the fuck you really believe, but your attitude stinks. You come in to argue over needless issues, your intent seems to be merely to provoke, and for someone who uses the "anarchist" self-description, and speaks of the IWW, your treatment of others here reflects a very antagonistic, competitive philosophy.

                          Something doesn't add up.

                          No, you're not CIA, you may be just a dick, when all the dust is settled, and you certainly are acting like a complete jackass here. DBAD in someone elses diary. I may start to hide rate you for your general dickish behavior.

                          "In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

                          by ZhenRen on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 03:11:54 PM PST

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  I dont believe in Ronald Reagan's 11th commandment (0+ / 0-)

                            Yes, when leftists or anarchists or socialists or Leninists or any other "ist" do things worthy of ridicule, I ridicule them.  The left is powerless, ignored and impotent because it does stupid things. I have no problem with pointing out stupid things.

                            But given that I haven't posted in any of Ray's diaries for weeks, maybe even months, I think you are either talking out your butt, or you are just "remembering" what you WANT to remember.  (shrug)

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 03:21:16 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  The comment was not in one of Ray's diaries (0+ / 0-)

                            But it spoke volumes. Nice example of mutual aid, there, you anarchist you. More like mutual warfare you believe in. Great example you're setting for dialogue, consensus, solidarity, unity. More like capitalist go-for-the jugular cut throat behavior.

                            I see you.

                            "In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

                            by ZhenRen on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 03:26:53 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  then let's see it (0+ / 0-)

                            I think you are talking out your ass.

                            Show me.

                            Wait, wait--let me guess:  you're too tired and you have work to do, right . . . ?

                            (sigh)

                            No wonder nobody pays any attention to the left.

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 03:29:57 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Actually quite true (0+ / 0-)
                            you're too tired and you have work to do, right . . . ?
                            I'll be lucky if I get this damn report in on time, and will now have to drive downtown to mail the thing. My fault for getting sucked in here.

                            Nice support from a fellow "working class" in solidarity. You're a fraud.

                            "In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

                            by ZhenRen on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 03:32:44 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I see, so you: (0+ / 0-)

                            1. make an unsubstantiated statement about me and something you claim I said

                            2. get asked to put up or shut up, then

                            3. wave your arms with all sorts of excuses about why you can't produce anything remotely to support anything you said.

                            At this point, I neither know nor care whether you are just making shit up out of thin air, or if you are recalling a comment from someone else and attributing it to me because everyone who disagrees with you on anything all looks alike to you.

                            But I do know I'm calling you on your horse shit . . .

                            You have 24 hours to produce a comment written by me "the other day" that says anything remotely like what you say I said. OR an apology from you and an acknowledgement that no such comment was made.  If I do not see one or the other in 24 hours, I will have a little chat with the admins about it.

                            Time to put up or shut up.

                            The link to my comments page is here:

                            http://www.dailykos.com/...

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 03:39:19 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  My, what an odd display (0+ / 0-)

                            of self-justified authority. So, what will you do in 24 hours? Send in the enforcers of the rulz? When you don't get your way, you turn to hierarchy and top down authority? In effect, you turn to the site police?

                            Yep, your anarchism is showing. Literally laughing here... I mean really, you're revealing your true philosophy with each new comment. Hell, I don't call the police even when I'm dealing with real life threats... because since the justice system is so unfair, I wouldn't wish it on anyone.

                            You're a flaming fraud. You wouldn't know how to apply anarchist theory in real life situations if it hit you in your thick head.

                            And you can get your fellow authoritarians to ban me for calling you a fraud if you like. this site means relatively little to me.  Now, wouldn't that act of unjustified use of force on your part put a nice solid period at the end of my observations?

                            I've nailed you dude, or rather, you've nailed yourself.

                            "In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

                            by ZhenRen on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 03:53:53 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  ok, so you got nothing, and you are (0+ / 0-)

                            just talking out your ass.

                            Got it.

                            Thanks for showing everybody.  It saves them the trouble of reading all my comments for the past three months at the link I gave, and seeing for themselves that you are full of shit.  (shrug)

                            You still have 23 hours to make an apology.

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 04:01:36 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I really couldn't care less (0+ / 0-)

                            I'm too lazy to obey your command to produce the evidence. Maybe I'll let this drag out for awhile just too see you reveal yourself, not to your cohorts, but to my own eyes. I think for myself, and don't follow the crowds, the cliques, the majority.

                            I see you. It's over. You're one of the most authoritarian personalities on the site.

                            "In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

                            by ZhenRen on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 04:05:11 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  and you still got nothing . . . . . (0+ / 0-)

                            Put up or shut up.

                            (I now suspect that I was right after all, you ARE one of those leftist morans who would rather die than admit they are wrong about anything.)

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 04:07:10 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I have everything (0+ / 0-)

                            as far as my own personal requirements are concerned. You don't have any power over me, despite your delusions.  As to obeying you, or not, my refusal to follow your dictum seems to have you stomping your feet in a temper tantrum.

                            Oh my... crazy damn world, isn't it?

                            "In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

                            by ZhenRen on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 04:10:31 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  and still nothing /nt (0+ / 0-)

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 04:15:23 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  And you still... (0+ / 0-)

                            don't even see what you've revealed to me in your display.

                            You're a fraud. You don't know enough about anarchist sociopolitical theory to understand why, but you're a fraud.

                            Oh, and that report I have to mail by 4:00? I missed it, like a complete fool, so now I have to drive the long drive downtown. Maybe I'll stop off at the Red and Black Cafe before coming home.

                            Heeheeeee. Most fun I've had in a while, getting you to come out of that dictatorial closet.

                            "In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

                            by ZhenRen on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 04:21:06 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  you can wave your arms all you want (0+ / 0-)

                            I did not say anything remotely like what you say I said. And anyone can look at the link I posted and read all my comments for the past 3 months and see for themselves.

                            Which means either you are wrecklessly mistaken and too proud to admit it, or a deliberate deceitful liar.

                            Or are anarchists allowed to make false statements about people that they can't back up . . . because lying is all anti-authoritariany and stuff . . . . and asking people to back up what they say is authoritarian nazism omigod (runs around with head on fire)

                            (snicker)

                            You're a parody of yourself.  It's fun to watch.  But since you are either too proud or too dishonest to just admit you are wrong, I'll leave you to wave your arms alone.

                            You have 22 hours.

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 04:29:39 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I no longer need to back it up (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            lostinamerica

                            Your behavior makes my case for me even better than the comment you made. You could have simply had a respectful dialogue with me, but you became hostile, dictatorial, and didn't communicate anything to me except your threats.

                            I don't respond well to threats of retribution, but I would have goddamn melted if you had simply recognized my humanity, which you refused to do at every opportunity. Not many in my real life have recognized my humanity as of late. My work is hideous, my boss is not an intellectual giant, to put it politely, and I am suffering. I'm exhausted, and I've explained that from the beginning, but you've ignored that, and ruthlessly played your competitive games with me, even threatening me with punishment by site authority.

                            I'm a goddamn pushover... a softy... an overworked, exploited, mistreated worker, craving for just a bit of human understanding, and all you had to do was be a little compassionate, and you would have had me from hello.

                            But you chose to fuck with me, using rather extreme tones of condescension, threats of going to the site authority, rather than say, "Hey, this isn't important, mail in that report, save yourself some trouble...", but no, you chose to go the way of power, appeals to elites, use of punishment and authority to make me submit.

                            I see you. You're a complete fraud. Anarchists, contrary to popular misunderstanding, are pacifists. They eschew unwarranted authority. Many of them wouldn't kill a fly. But they steadfastly refuse to be dominated by unjust authority.

                            You're clueless.  You're a charlatan. You know nothing about anarchist theory. You're outed.

                            "In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

                            by ZhenRen on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 04:53:58 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  silly dick-waving (yawn) (0+ / 0-)

                            You were wrong.  Have the guts to admit it.

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 05:17:46 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Heh (0+ / 0-)

                            Your own comment history proves I'm right.

                            Go back to your overlords and forge a new tactic. You're outed. It's over.

                            "In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

                            by ZhenRen on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 05:25:01 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  show me (0+ / 0-)
                            Your own comment history proves I'm right.
                            Show me the comment you said I made. Post it right here in front of everyone.

                            But you won't.  You can't.  There isn't any. Which means you either shot your mouth off without knowing what you were blithering about (and you are too pride-filled and full of yourself to admit you were wrong), or you were a deliberate deceitful liar.

                            Which is it.

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 05:29:11 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I'm sorry to inform you (0+ / 0-)

                            but you're outed. You're a complete fraud. Don't ever pretend to be an anarchist again.

                            "In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

                            by ZhenRen on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 05:31:44 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  (yawn) (0+ / 0-)

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 05:38:45 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Dude, I'm actually being kind (0+ / 0-)

                            Younger, more lively anarchists would not be so tolerant. It's over. You're outed.

                            "In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

                            by ZhenRen on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 05:40:50 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  my goodness, you sure are full of yourself. . . (0+ / 0-)

                            It's no wonder you're too full of self-pride to just admit that you were wrong, and I didn't say what you said I said.

                            (sigh again)

                            But since I find your mouth-foaming entertaining (in a trainwreck sort of way), I'll poke you once again so you howl hysterically at the moon . . . .

                            Boo !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

                            And now you may have your self-important last word.

                            (PS--you were wrong.)

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 05:46:46 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  ps, of all the silly threads in all of Ray's (0+ / 0-)

                            diaries, this dick-waving nonsense is just about the silliness.

                            You were wrong, Zhen.  Wrong.  W-R-O-N-G. Wrong.

                            Have the guts to admit it.  It won't fucking kill you.

                            Geez.

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 05:42:26 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  You're a fraud (0+ / 0-)

                            I'm thinking that site admin, at this point, may see the truth, as uninformed as they are.

                            For fucks sake, I'm one of the older, more staid, gray-bearded, more pacifist of anarchists that participate here. If I say you're a fraud as an anarchist, you're a fraud. You could have engaged me with dialogue, but you have not. You have attacked. I gave you every opportunity to explain yourself, to work with me in  mutual reciprocity, but you refuse.

                            I see you. You're outed.

                            "In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

                            by ZhenRen on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 05:55:39 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  you're the one who lied about me, not vice versa (0+ / 0-)

                            (shrug)

                            You were wrong.  Quit your crybaby arm-waving and just admit it.  It won't fucking kill you.

                            Geez.

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 05:57:30 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  You're a fraud. (0+ / 0-)
                            Quit your crybaby arm-waving and just admit it.
                            This is the speech of...   no anarchist.

                            This dude is a flagrant fraud. If he were real, this dialogue would take an entire different shape. It would be far more humane, more understanding, an far more intelligent. This guy is a fraud.

                            "In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

                            by ZhenRen on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 06:07:39 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  ps--this is hysterically funny . . . (0+ / 0-)
                            If I say you're a fraud as an anarchist, you're a fraud.
                            The Great Oz has spoken, huh . . .

                            Well maybe you can excommunicate me or something, or whatever it is you do to heretics, Your Holiness . . . .

                            (snicker)

                            Too funny.

                            PS--in all the time you've been arm-waving and mouth-foaming, you could have been looking up and posting this comment you say I said.

                            But you won't.  You can't.  There isn't any.  (shrug)

                            You were wrong.  Just admit it and get over yourself.

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 06:00:49 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Whatever, or whoever you are... (0+ / 0-)

                            You're no anarchist. Do you think leftists are stupid? Apparently so...

                            You, sir, are outed.

                            "In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

                            by ZhenRen on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 06:11:04 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  why is it that the loudmouths ALWAYS have time to (0+ / 0-)

                            POST their bullshit statements, but NEVER seem to have time to DEFEND any of them . . . ?

                            (sigh)

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 03:48:58 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                •  obviously, I work for the CIA . . . . . (0+ / 0-)

                  (sigh)

                  In the end, reality always wins.

                  by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 01:50:59 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                •  um . . . (0+ / 0-)

                  You:

                  He mistakes the issue of size for the manner of organization.
                  Me:
                  It ain't their size that matters--it's who gets to run them that matters.
                  (sigh)  Why has the left ALWAYS had this same problem of aiming AFTER they shoot . . . . And why does the left's IFF always need adjusting?

                  No wonder nobody listens to us. We can't even listen to each other.

                  In the end, reality always wins.

                  by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 01:56:53 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

        •  very good point (0+ / 0-)

          but, I think a lot more can and should be done to break up monopolies and banks.

      •  Define standard of living (3+ / 0-)

        This is the big issue that is the final frontier. The propaganda -- and it's effective on left and right -- is that if you don't have a car and don't have star trek appliances in your massive energy hog home, and you can't click your way to wealth, your standard of living goes down. But if you look at the efforts of people in intentional communities, and there are a lot of them where I live in Europe, it's all about redefining standard of living to bring it in line with quality of life.

        There is a very significant alternative / complimentary currency effort in Germany and in my experience, it's working very well. I use "Berliners" exclusively when I go to my neighborhood cafe pub and for the produce market in my neighborhood.

        We should do these things, and many other things. We need to have as many resources as possible. Diversity = safety.

        "When fascism comes to America it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross." Sinclair Lewis

        by Evoculture on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 12:30:15 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Living standards? Have you been paying (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        rmonroe

        attention?  In the aftermath of the Great Looting (2008 financial crisis) average folks lost tens of trillions of dollars in assets, all of which was promptly transferred to the top 1 percent, mos of it going to the top .01 percent.

        The rapacious appetite of the corporate state is unsustainable; we need to first admit that now, and then prepare for the changes that are sure to come.

        As to our question, take a few minutes to watch the embedded Chris Hedges video.  He's answering your very question.

      •  You're not a left libertiarian (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        rmonroe

        You're a right wing free market zealot.

        Left libertarians are anti-capitalist.

        "In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

        by ZhenRen on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 01:30:33 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  True (3+ / 0-)

        What if you want to buy a car? What would you use to pay for it? Unless your local community builds cars?

        And, not sure exactly how this would all work, but at some point I would hope to collect social security. How do you pay your social security taxes with local currency?

    •  There is a town in IIRC the Berkshires (0+ / 0-)

      of mass that has a system like that. You can buy BerkShares at the local bank and get a 5% premium and then spend them at stores etc that accept them. When you need to pay outsiders you can convert them back to US$$ at the same slight discount.

      But the more they are used the more the money stays and circulates in the area. So grocery stores can take them and use them to pay local farmers and use any US$ to pay outside suppliers.

      So far it has very high acceptance. I heard about it on PBS News.

      It has a website.

      I'm asking you to believe. Not in my ability to bring about real change in Washington ... *I'm asking you to believe in yours.* Barack Obama

      by samddobermann on Mon Nov 25, 2013 at 03:09:40 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I utterly disagree with this: (11+ / 0-)
    But now, with the decimation of the U.S. manufacturing base, along with the dismantling of our unions and opposition parties, we will have to search for different instruments of rebellion.
    Our entire society (and corporate profits) are still just as completely inextricably dependent on our manufacturing base as ever-----everyt hing in your house, including the house, was manufactured by someone somewhere (or, in those immortal words, "you didn't build that"). The only difference between then and now is that instead of being located within our own borders, everyone's manufacturing base is now scattered all over the planet, owned by multinational corporations instead of national ones.

    And the anti-corporate movement, alas, has not followed them. Instead, like Hedges, they have stayed here, and have wracked their brains trying to figure out a way to fight multi-national corporations at a national level.  It is hopeless and ineffective, and is a major reason why the left is utterly powerless. It is a pathway to continued failure and irrelevance.

    If we want to fight the multinationals, we have to fight them at their own level. They are global--we must be too. Nations are irrelevant to them--and are to us too. The key to economic power today is still the same as it was in 1925---gain the ability to cut off the entire flow of money to the corporados, and keep it cut off until we get what we want.  And only one group of people in the entire world has the ability to do that----the corporation's own employees.

    BUT those employees are now scattered across the globe, everywhere from Azerbaijan to Zambia. So we have to apply the lessons of the IWW from back in 1925 to our current situation--one big union.  If every Ford employee, or every BP employee, or every Daewoo employee, is in the same union, under the same contract, with the same pay scale, whether they are located in Tennessee, Tibet, or Timbuktu, THEN we can have the power we had back in 1925. We can shut down the flow of money GLOBALLY, and keep it shut down until we get what we want.

    And we already have potential allies in that fight.  Every movement for social justice everywhere, whether it's environmentalism or indigenous peoples rights or womens rights or gay rights or whatever, are fighting the same people we are----rich white male corporados. If we fight them separately, in individual nations, the multinationals will simply crush us one at a time. The ONLY chance we have is to unite globally and fight them everywhere, all at the same time, in a coordinated global campaign. If we shut down the flow of money to the corporados until we get what we want, then all the other social justice movements can also get what THEY want. United, we win. Divided, we bicker and squabble in obscurity. Like we do now.

    Of course, we must actually ORGANIZE globally to do that.  We must end our silly obsession with nationalism and move beyond it, just like the corporados already have. That will take a wrenching change in outlook that most lefties (who are still living in the 1980's) simply don't want to make. And, alas, most lefties also don't want to make the tremendous effort in organizing that it will take to form global trade unions to fight global corporations. Most lefties prefer to preach from their armchairs about what everyone else should do. And that's why the left remains impotent and ignored by everyone everywhere.

    It's long past the time for us to change that.

    In the end, reality always wins.

    by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 08:01:09 AM PST

    •  People are already connecting internationally. (0+ / 0-)

      The movement against the corporate state is global.

      •  not good enough (8+ / 0-)

        Cheerleading each other on the Internet doesn't cut the mustard. We need real organization.  We need Ford workers in China and Mexico and Tennessee and everywhere else to all be in the same union---not "in solidarity with", not "we'll help each other out", not "we'll send a check when you need it", not "hooray for each other"---in the same union. One company, one union, one contract, one wage scale--for everybody. For every global corporation everywhere.

        Talk is cheap.  Organizing is not. We are talking--we are not organizing. Until we do, all we are accomplishing is verbally weiner-wanking each other. (shrug)

        In the end, reality always wins.

        by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 08:25:13 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Great! Keep is informed about your organizing (0+ / 0-)

          efforts.

        •  We'll know that such efforts are succeeding (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          AoT, Hey338Too, fcvaguy

          when international solidarity extends to sympathy boycotts and secondary strikes that transcend national borders.

          Nothing human is alien to me.

          by WB Reeves on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 08:43:39 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  yes indeed, that will be the start (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            AoT, 6412093, fcvaguy

            But the only way it can be successful is through real organizing, in which all the workers are actually in one effective union that extends everywhere the company does. Yes, that effort will be long and hard and probably bloody.  But it must be done.  There is no other way.

            Back in the 80's, both the Steel Workers Union and the UAW were seriously talking about international alliances to unionize the workers at all the plants worldwide.  Alas, in the end, the unions stupidly decided that the company was their friend and that the "foreigners" were their enemies who were "stealing our jobs !!!!!"

            It led exactly where some of us at the time said it would lead.  (shrug)

            The American unions and the American left are still living in the 1980's, and still wave the US flag. And sadly, that is true of other countries too--though the recent effort within the US by the German unions for Volkswagen gives me hope. The situation will be hopeless as long as our silly nation-based strategy continues. The corporations have not made that mistake--they don't wave ANY flag, and they don't give a rat's ass about "American interests" or "American people".

            In the end, reality always wins.

            by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 08:54:16 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Top down is going to fail every time (0+ / 0-)

              Not that I need to tell you that.

              I wouldn't expect this to start in the US. I would say that a foreign union will have to make the first moves and put some effort in it before it can make any headway in the US.

              •  I agree on both counts (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                6412093, Hey338Too

                It will begin at the grassroots level, in places like Indonesia and Vietnam, which are the new low-wage havens replacing China.

                The intervention of the German unions into the American Volkswagen plants is also an example that should be studied carefully.

                Unionizing the multinationals will be a long, hard, slow process, much harder than the original process of unionizing the US corporations was. It will likely result in many bloody fights which will make Ludlow and the others look like Sunday afternoon picnics. Those who like their "revolutions" to be quick, easy and fun, will not want to be a part of this process. But it must be done. There is no other alternative.

                In the end, reality always wins.

                by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 09:17:21 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

            •  Well I won't pretend to speak for Unions as a (4+ / 0-)

              whole, but I'm very encouraged by the Teamster's shift on the question of emigrant labor. My Local turns out regularly in support of actions by the Latino community on that score.

              Nothing human is alien to me.

              by WB Reeves on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 09:24:51 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  yes. I remember when every major union in the US (4+ / 0-)

                opposed any immigration reforms, on the grounds that "the damn forners were taking our jobs".

                That was back when the unions decided that the companies were our pals, they had our best interest at heart, and if we worked with them as partners, they'd take care of us. So we stupidly agreed to all sorts of give-backs so they wouldn't move all our jobs to China.  

                And what did the company do?  They took the give-backs, said "thanks", stuffed the money into their pockets--then moved the jobs to China anyway.

                We were chumps.

                And too many of us still are, and are still playing the "forners are the enemy" game.

                We long ago forgot what the word "solidarity" means.  Or at least what the word "whipsawing" means.

                In the end, reality always wins.

                by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 09:37:09 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

        •  Sorry for coming in so late on this - saw it this (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Hey338Too

          morning, but couldn't quite figure why it made me itch. I like the idea of a single union for everybody about as little as I like the idea of global corporations forming a megalopoly (don't know if that's a word, but anyway...).

          Until we come up with better ways to make the people at the top accountable, always, that size organization is going to be one more place where the individual at the bottom gets ignored for the "long term strategies" of those at the top. Whether they're misguided or corrupt, there's no way that I can see that there aren't several layers of insulation between the top and bottom, simply by having to have as much structure in place as is needed to make the system function.

          I don't like to put down an idea without being able to offer an alternative, and I don't have one, but monolithic entities, even theoretically, make me step back a couple of paces.

          At least half the future I've been expecting hasn't gotten here yet. Sigh.... (Yes, there's gender bias in my name; no, I wasn't thinking about it when I signed up. My apologies.)

          by serendipityisabitch on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 05:17:53 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  well, I'm certainly open to suggestions as to how (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            serendipityisabitch

            to organize the whole working class without. . .  well . .  organizing the whole working class . . . . ?

            Maybe ten different working classes, each with their own union?

            Forgive my gentle sarcasm, but I think you are taking ideology to a rather silly extreme. What good is organization without . . . well . .  organization?

            In the end, reality always wins.

            by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 05:23:33 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Yeah, since I don't have a solution to offer, (0+ / 0-)

              I probably shouldn't have mentioned that part of yours bothers me. I'm not feeling ideological at all in this, just looking at how large organizations tend to behave. Maybe the equivalent to a UN of unions with delegates selected from the ranks of existing unions? I don't know whether you consider the UN to be a potentially viable organization, or just another way to waste time and squash the little guy, or something in between.

              Yes, something is needed as a counterweight for the multinationals, and yes, we do have to think globally, and it would be really useful to be able to also act globally.

              My question is, how do you create a structure that is powerful enough to counterbalance the very real threat of the multinationals without also creating another privileged class sitting at the top of it? I think it's a legitimate question, even if that displays naivete on my part.

              At least half the future I've been expecting hasn't gotten here yet. Sigh.... (Yes, there's gender bias in my name; no, I wasn't thinking about it when I signed up. My apologies.)

              by serendipityisabitch on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 05:56:10 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

    •  We can fight nationally though (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      WB Reeves, Ray Pensador

      And we have to fight nationally as well as internationally. We can have a general strike in the US, although not a revolutionary one most likely. But the idea that we can't badly injure capital with a general strike in the US is just absurd. But we also need to act with the people in other countries. I'll start thinking we're on the way to winning when I see a US union go on strike in solidarity with a foreign union.

      •  it's a gesture (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        6412093

        It's like having a general strike against McDonald's, but only having it in Louisiana.  It's barely a pinprick.  They won't even notice. Yes, it may be useful as a symbolic gesture, or as an inspiring organizing tool to bring others in. But a general strike happens everywhere or it's not a "general strike" at all.  (shrug)

        To fight effectively, we MUST fight at their level, and gain the ability to cut off their entire flow of money--all of it, globally, every last dime--and KEEP it shut off, until we get what we want. Anything less is just a gesture.

        I'll start thinking we're on the way to winning when I see a US union go on strike in solidarity with a foreign union.
        Since the US unions were de-balled long ago, it will likely be the other way around---other nations will strike in support of us.

        The Germans are already showing us the way, with their intervention in the Volkswagen plants located in the US. Yes, they are doing that for their own selfish nationalist reasons, but what they are doing is precisely the first steps that need to be taken.

        In the end, reality always wins.

        by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 09:08:57 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Then there's nothing new about this (0+ / 0-)

          If it needs to be everywhere then there's never been a general strike and we aren't talking about anything new.

          •  that's right--there's nothing new about it (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            6412093, Hey338Too

            As I said in my first comment, it's the very same thing the IWW was preaching way back in 1925. It worked then, it will work now.  The only difference is that this time it MUST be done at the global level instead of just the national level--because the corporations themselves are now global instead of just national.

            There's no need to reinvent the wheel.

            We've beaten the corporados before, and we can beat them again the same way. We just have to get off our goddamn asses and start organizing.  Globally.

            In the end, reality always wins.

            by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 09:21:04 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Since it has never happened before (0+ / 0-)

              such global co-ordination would, by definition, be new.

              Nothing human is alien to me.

              by WB Reeves on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 09:35:22 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  yeah, but in principle it's not any different than (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                6412093, WB Reeves

                organizing at the national level back in the 1930's was.

                Logistically more difficult, sure, and perhaps a major leap in consciousness--but organizing is organizing is organizing, and it's all done the same way.

                In the end, reality always wins.

                by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 10:17:03 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  I am also concerned (4+ / 0-)

                  that Hedges discounts unions and the manufacturing sector.  Manufacturing jobs have shifted but it is still a significant sector.  Commentators have pronounced unions "dead" for the last 140 years but we're still here.

                  US unions have periodically taken some small international steps, including the Ravenswood Aluminium strike against bankster Marc Rich, several solidarity actions by the ILWU in supporting of other Port workers, and the UMW and Teamsters support for the Columbia unions in coal and at Coca-Cola.

                  Of course these aren't nearly enough. I'd hoped that after the Red Scare receded, that US unions would become far more active in international solidarity actions against common employers because "socialist" foreign unions were no longer so threatening.

                  When organizers get murdered, like a teamster organizer recently in El Salvador, it gives folks pause, especially when foreign unions are outlawed in Mexico. But  we must press onward.  Multinational companies control many of the new manufacturing plants now opening in the US and we must confront them everywhere.

                  “The answer must be, I think, that beauty and grace are performed whether or not we will or sense them. The least we can do is try to be there.” ― Annie Dillard, Pilgrim at Tinker Creek

                  by 6412093 on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 10:37:50 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

    •  Bravo! (0+ / 0-)

      You've nailed it my friend!

      "When fascism comes to America it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross." Sinclair Lewis

      by Evoculture on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 12:32:38 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  very good points (0+ / 0-)

      multi-nationals have power because of globalization.

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