In my previous post, I expressed the opinion that a major mistake made by Communist nations, both past and present, is that they moved too fast to make radical economic changes after their respective revolutions. Stalin’s “Five Year Plans”, Mao’s “Great Leap Forward”, and the very radical economic and societal moves made by Cambodia’s Khmer Rouge left tens of millions dead. What I propose instead is that once a revolution is won here in the U.S., and a vanguard/transition party is established, we then move slowly into a socialist system.
Now, we can make major societal changes regarding human rights issues like LGBTQ issues, women’s equality and abortion rights, and of course, minority rights. And we should also start socializing major industries, like utility companies, the medical system, and other day-to-day human rights issues. But the last thing we want to do is something as radical as eliminating the money-based system or forcing people into collectives.
The reason for this is because the people are not yet informed about the nature of the Socialist/Communist system as of today. We need to create a new hegemonic culture based on equality and the new government-to-citizen relationship first. Italian scholar and Communist Antonio Gramsci iwrote about how capitalism is the hegemonic culture. So everything we know is based on that brutal system and, therefore, it is hard to think outside of it, especially in America where the entire history of our young nation is nothing but capitalism. We don’t have the history of a feudal system. Other nations do. So they have something to fall back on, culturally. So that’s why we need a vanguard/transitional party so immensely.
In conclusion, we must make a gradual change in our economic system. This will help the masses ease into a new leftist system. I arrived at this notion because, according to scholars, it took France’s democratic system to work itself out all the way from the storming of the Bastille in 1789, until 1898. So we must be patient and live with a gradual economic change. Plus, Ionce comfortable with the socialist system, the masses can then move into a Communist system for they will be educated in terms of the next steps towards emancipation.
So we cannot have a radical economic change in the U.S. after a far left revolution. The people need to be eased into a new system. Then we will be ready for a Communist system in the a post-socialist stage… even if it takes 100 years.
“Robbers and Governments” from Leo Tolstoy. This piece is an excerpt is from Book V called “Revolt.” This chapter pertains to “The struggle to abolish injustice; the battle cries of the new army which is gathering for the deliverance of humanity.”
The robber generally plundered the rich, the governments generally plunder the poor and protest those rich who assist in their crimes. The robber doing his work risked his life, while the governments risk nothing, but base their whole activity on lies and deception. The robber did not compel anyone to join his band, the government generally enroll their soldiers by force….The robber did not intentionally vitiate people, but the governments, to accomplish their ends, vitiate whole generations from childhood to manhood with false religions and patriotic instruction.
On Jan. 9th at Pellissippi State Community College in Knoxville, TN, Pres. Obama issued a landmark proposal for the government to pay the tuition for two-year community college programs nationwide, making them free. It is a stunning step that could raise the quality of life for millions of Americans.
The obtainment of a secondary-education is the path to the middle class for both newly graduated high school students and older adults looking to advance themselves who could not otherwise afford it.
According to a piece in the NYT by Justin Wolfers, in “The Upshot”, the macro economic benefits would also be great for it would increase both output and raise living standards across the middle and lower classes. He continues that:
Mr. Obama’s proposal is an effort to revive education as one of the drivers of economic growth. If he succeeds in persuading more of the next generation to continue beyond high school, and to invest in community college and possibly beyond, there’s a strong chance the rate of economic growth will be bolstered for decades to come. And relative to other ways of strengthening growth, investment in community college is most likely to ensure that the middle class shares in the benefits of it.
Now students must attend community college at least half-time, maintain a 2.5 GPA, and make steady progress toward completing their program to be eligible. So there are strings attached that I am sure the critics will love to claim are not there.
And for those fiscal hawks out there, the government would pay for 75% of the costs (by investing $60 billion over the next 10 years) while the participating state would cover the remaining 25%. But keep in mind that the annual Federal budget is $3.5 trillion , making $60 million a drop in the bucket.
And one other thing. Make sure that we keep in mind that furthering one’s education does not solely benefit us economically. It also makes us more informed, better suited citizens ready to lead our nation through voting choices or even by holding higher-office.
A good piece by NYT op-ed columnist, and Nobel Prize Winner, Paul Krugman on how our government’s investments in making things easier for high finance Wall Street swindlers has little return for the ordinary American.
The main point here, as I see it, is that if Wall Street is making big money it does not equate the same thing for the rest of us.
Why should anyone trust GOP Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell with hopes for a more civil Senate? He’s the greatest of obstructionists in power now!
A short piece in The Guardian on “The Day We Fight Back” protests that occurred Tuesday involving organizations and individuals against government surveillance of internet activity.
Interesting to see how protests are further morphing as the digital age is progressing, if even it is still the digital age at all.
A thoughtful op-ed in the Washington Post by Fareed Zakaria on “Why Americans Hate The Government.”
Here at STL, we are not conspiracy theorists. But after the compounding news of NSA data collection programs, things are starting to take a turn towards proving conspiracy theories correct.
This article in The Post uses more Snowden revealed documents which further illuminate NSA programs that collect e-mail and chat contact lists from popular services like Yahoo! and Microsoft.
When will people start taking action regarding all of this Government spying? When will it be “enough?”
And by the way, where is the Tea Party on all of these NSA programs? Aren’t they all about “freedom?”
With Edward Snowden leaking NSA documents to The Guardian’s Glenn Greenwald over the last few weeks in an effort to expose secret government domestic spying exercises, the paper’s website has put together a nifty little java presentation of famous U.S. whistleblowers. Entitled “A Guardian guide to U.S. government Whistleblowers”, it’s a short, but sweet, list of prominent U.S. citizens who helped expose the government’s wrongdoings.
A good article in the NYT reports how surveys, studies, and polls are showing that “millenials” (or Americans under 30) think government is not a “boogey man” and that it should play a role in society’s problem-solving processes. It is good to have a young generation that understands that there is a place for Medicare, Social Security, and regulations for Wall St.