Chicago 1969: When Black Panthers aligned with Confederate-flag-wielding, working-class whites Reply

By Colette Gaiter

The Conversation

In the 2016 presidential election, Donald Trump won the white vote across all demographics except for college-educated white women. He did especially well among working class white voters: 67 percent of whites without a college degree voted for him.

Some post-election analysis marveled at how the white working class could vote against its own interests by supporting a billionaire businessman who is likely to support policies that cut taxes for the rich and weaken the country’s social safety net. Since the New Deal, the Democratic Party has been seen as the party of working people, while Republicans were considered the party of the elites. Donald Trump was able to flip this narrative to his advantage. Election 2016 balkanized issues and made it seem impossible to work on racism, sexism, poverty and economic issues all at once. A core question moving forward for social justice advocates and the Democratic Party is how they can move beyond identity politics and attract working-class voters of all races, building stronger coalitions among disparate groups.

One place to look for inspiration and instruction might be 1960s social movements that understood the power of alliances across identities and issues. During this period, a radical coalition formed that might seem impossible today: A group of migrant southerners and working-class white activists called the Young Patriots joined forces with the Black Panthers in Chicago to fight systemic class oppression.

So how did this alliance form? And how can its lessons be applied to today’s political moment?

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Debate/Discussion: Should Libertarians Support a Basic Income Guarantee? 1

An interesting discussion of this question between Matt Zwolinski (pro) and  Tom Woods (con). Listen here.

Some voices in the libertarian world have argued that a basic income guarantee for everyone would be better than the current welfare state from a pragmatic point of view. Matt Zwolinski adds that it is morally required, given the dubious origins of so many existing property titles. Result: an engaging exchange of ideas I know you’ll enjoy. But be sure to listen all the way to the end, since that’s where the best parts can be found.

About the Guest

Matt Zwolinski is Associate Professor of Philosophy at the University of San Diego and a co-director of the University’s Institute for Law and Philosophy.

Sponsor

Don’t be taken in by gold scams — and there are lots of them. Arm yourself with this free report from Schiff Gold.

Symposia Discussed

The Basic Income and the Welfare State (Cato Unbound)
The Basic-Income Debate (Independent Review) — this is the main one I drew from

Guest’s Blog

Bleeding Heart Libertarians

Guest’s Twitter

@MattZwolinski

Feudalism, capitalism and corporatism: How the corporation is changing the world Reply

An interesting discussion of modern economic history that socialists and libertarians alike should be able to appreciate.

By Jeffrey Harrod

Philosophers for Change

Write about my vision of a “post-capitalist world,” I was requested. But I find this difficult. Difficult because I believe we are already in, or nearing, a post-capitalist world if by capitalism is meant the system described by Marx and his followers about 150 years ago.  In this essay I raise the possibility for future discussion and action that there is an ongoing attempt to create a system for the maintenance of privilege and the production of poverty which is so different from the past that a new name should be found for it. Because a key component of it is the corporation it may be that corporatism is a suitable name.

Introduction: History as a succession of different ways to empower the rich  

The French historian and progressive philosopher Fernand Braudel observed that throughout history there seemed to be a minority of people who held power and wealth, ruled society and exploited the population to sustain their power and privilege. If this were the case then the human history question of primordial importance is – “how does this minority do it?”

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The Age of Humanism is Ending Reply

I’d say this article is hysterical leftist paranoia. Neoliberalism and cultural leftism are friends, not enemies. The inequality of wealth that we see rising is similar to what happened during the industrial revolution when the rise of the liberal bourgeoisie paralleled the growth the proletarian class. It’s amazing how many of today’s leftists miss elementary observations that are compatible with basic Marxist theory.

It’s the supposed illiberal forces that are actually the ones that are taking some kind of stand, however modest, against neoliberalism. The National Front, for example, is the most leftwing party in France in terms of defending secular republicanism against reactionary Islam, the social safety net against global capitalism, and national self-determination against EU and US imperialism. The “right wing reactionary” parties of Europe are not trying to restore the ancient regime or the classical bourgeoisie, much less historic fascism. They’re trying to restore the middle class of the pre-neoliberal era.

Here’s a good way to look at it. The former middle class people in the West who have sunk into a reproletarianized labor force in the era of globalization are like the once largely independent peasants that began to make up the ranks of the urban industrial proletariat following being run of their land by enclosure and forced to move to the cities to find work in the factories.

Similarly, the once somewhat prosperous modern Western middle classes are now being reproletarianized thanks to globalization, and are no longer working in high wage manufacturing jobs with job security but are instead being forced into working in superstores, fast food joints, and call centers.

What the Left is unable to grasp is that what the populist-nationalist movements in the West at present represent is a working to middle class that is resisting being reproletarianized. Yes, they tend to be more socially conservative than the neoliberal elites because working classes have always been more conservative socially than the liberal bourgeoisie. “But Donald Trump is a racist!” Yeah? Even if true, so was Karl Marx. “But the populists nationalists are against gay marriage!” Yeah? That would have really flown in the old Communist Parties. “But they’re against feminism!” Yeah, Marine and Marion Le Pen really want to put women back in the kitchen and, besides, feminism has its roots in the thought of liberals like Mary Wollstonecraft and John Stuart Mill, not historic socialism.

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Robert Stark interviews Prince of Queens about Economics & the Alt Left Movement Reply

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Robert Stark and co-host Pilleater, Bay Area Guy, and Rabbit talk to alt-left YouTuber Prince of Queens about Alt-left philosophy and economic issues.

Topics:
Prince of Queens’ discovery of the Alt-left
The “Milo of the Alt Left?”
Prince of Queens’ vote for Jill Stein, and why he viewed Clinton as much worse than Trump
Rabbit appears 6 minutes in
Is the Alt-left, “the left-wing faction of the Alt-Right?”
How the Alt-Left includes both left leaning nationalist and race realist, as well as anti-racist and moderate feminist opposed to extreme political correctness, and whether those two factions can be coexist
A foundation for the Alt-left
Rationalism and the skeptic community
Bay Area Guy’s point that the Alt-Right has neglected economic issues, which are crucial to millenials
Books on economics including Michael Hudson’s Killing the Host, Ha-Joon Chang’s 23 Things They Don’t Tell You About CapitalismDean Baker’s Rigged, and Throwing Rocks at the Google Bus
Why corporations must have incentives to invest in their communities
Prices for housing and causes of the housing crisis
Prince of Queen’s personal story about renting in the Bay Area
The FIRE Economy, and the importance of distinguishing between productive earned income and parasitic unearned income
Corporate control and private-sector oppression
Mundane working, productivity, and income
The Basic Income
Student loan debt
The need for debt forgiveness
Slavery to work, Job distribution, and Ponzi schemes
Economic trolling

The Civil Society/State Dichotomy Reply

By Chris Shaw

Gramsci rightly identifies that in the modern political environment, simply recognising actors as either public or private, in the realm of states or markets respectively, is problematic. Unfortunately the crux of international political economy has accepted this modernist doctrine, tacitly deifying the rationalist discourses of action and modernity which underlie such conceptions. For a large bulk of IPE, as well as other social sciences such as economics and political science, this is the held belief. Rationalism guides human action, which inevitably means a continuous desire for capital accumulation, the expansion of capitalist cultural doctrines, and the belief that the individual is entirely the scope of investigation.

But of course this public/private discourse is far too simplistic to truly understand the extent of social relations and arrangements which provide governance and institutionalisation. Gramsci noted that in the public sphere, there exists a dialectic of civil society (the collection of organic institutions that range from the mannerisms of society to the voluntary governance arrangements such as townhalls and churches) and the state (which is perceived as the mechanism of implementation, mainly reliant on coercion and top-down infrastructure). The way a functioning public government works is by reconciling these two (seemingly non-reconcilable) sides. Thus most modern states, particularly those in the Global North, rely on the combination of a coercive state framework and a civil society infrastructure which legitimises the coercive practices and top-down authority. Thus states, to a large degree, rely on not just pure monopolised violence, but also on legitimising ideologies which allow it to create discourses and frameworks that may well have been rejected by civil society in its capacity to be a separate sphere of public government.

Equally, the private side of this dialectical equation is in many ways constructed by these statist and domineering discourses. The development of a capitalist mechanism of accumulation, grounded in private property and the control of the means of production, came almost entirely from the state’s mandate of it. Large scale ownership of production outlets and the relations of wage labour, where artificial economic classes were created, are entirely developments of the state in its accumulation of land during the enclosures, its encouragement of state credit through the development of central banking, and its destruction of the organic feudal relations which preceded this capitalist construction. This is not to say that private property relations cannot exist without the state. A multitude of tribal forms of property as well as elements in the feudal system proves this to be false. However, the extent to which private property relations inform modern society, and the importance this is given, is a creation of statist dynamics, which is justified both through coercion (as seen in the enclosures) and the development of a justificatory doctrine (modernist concepts of rational human action and the deification of a business class) which brings civil society onside.

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How Trump Can Bring Outside-the-Box Thinking to Bear on the Fed Reply

By Stefan Gleason

President-elect Donald Trump will soon have the opportunity to put his stamp on the Federal Reserve. And that is making the elite body of central bankers nervous.

On the campaign trail, Trump harangued Fed chair Janet Yellen for pumping up financial markets with cheap money – accusing the Obama appointee of being politically motivated.

Trump also called for the Federal Reserve to be audited.

The Fed operates in secret, creates inflation, and bails out Wall Street.

Fed officials worry the Trump presidency represents a unique threat to the Fed’s closely guarded “independence.” Sound money proponents, meanwhile, are hopeful that some long overdue reforms of the monetary system could begin to take shape.

The first item on the new president’s Fed agenda will be to appoint two members to the Board of Governors. The seven-seat Board currently has two vacancies that can be filled immediately.

The Board of Governors exerts direct influence over monetary policy and can push the Fed chair toward adopting a consensus opinion.

Trump Can Appoint Two New Fed Members Now and Replace Yellen Soon

Janet Yellen is likely to stay on as the public head of the Fed at least until her term expires in February 2018. (Trump could potentially ask her to step down, but he cannot unilaterally fire her.) The president-elect has previously indicated he intends to replace Yellen with a Republican. However, Trump’s appointments for Treasury and Commerce Secretary, Steven Mnuchin and Wilbur Ross, muddied the waters by recently praising Yellen’s job performance.

Mnuchin, a Goldman Sachs alumnus, and Ross, a billionaire investor, have benefited from the easy money policies of Yellen and her predecessors. The values of financial assets get artificially propped up by the Fed’s injections of stimulus into the financial system.

Wall Street isn’t interested in overturning the current monetary order. It is interested in making sure its interests continue to be served by it.

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We Should Take Our Cues From Markets — Not Politicians Reply

Jp Cortez

I grew up a block away from the 7-train, where I’d take a short ride from the 90th Street station to the Willets Point—Shea Stadium station to watch my favorite team, the New York Mets.

Sitting in the stands as a young child, I learned quickly that there were a number of ways to obtain and interpret information. I could watch the umpire and immediately have known whether Al Leiter threw a strike or a ball. Another option was to watch the scoreboard and, with some delay, have known whether Derek Bell safely stole second base. I could listen to the cheers (or jeers) of the rowdy, biased people around me and know whether or not Mike Piazza had just hit another home run.

In baseball, there are efficient and inefficient ways to obtain information.  There are also false signals.  The same is true in financial markets and presidential elections.

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Make Money Great Again: Vote for Gold Reply

By Guy Christopher, Originally Published on Money Metals Exchange

Who could possibly have predicted the astounding results of the November 8th presidential election?

A lot of folks, it turns out. Better than 60 million at last count. But that doesn’t include highly paid, and obviously over-paid, pollsters.

And it doesn’t include “journalists,” who showered their elitist agendas on television screens, in newsprint headlines and across cyberspace during the 17-month presidential campaign.

In short, those posing as experts predicting the future blew it. And they blew it “big league,” both before and after the election.

“No question – markets are going to tank all over the world,” said top experts at Yahoo Finance, during online, streaming coverage election night.

Stock markets instead went straight up for two days before modestly retreating.

Yahoo was not alone with that post-election financial advice. True to form, every business reporter in town got it dead wrong.

Curiously, not one dared repeat Trump’s constant drumbeat to his supporters – “stay out of this dangerous stock market!”

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Diwali, Lord Rama, and the Return of Gold from Exile Reply

By J P Cortez

October 30, 2016 marks an important holiday in the Indian culture. Diwali begins.

Diwali is one of the biggest festivals for Hindus, Sikhs, and Jains. It is a lavish celebration of the victory of light over darkness.

Diwali celebrations entail gleaming candles, luxurious works of art, opulent feasts, and the observance of good over evil. Diwali is also characterized by gift giving. Buying and gifting gold is considered auspicious during Diwali.

Given the nature of the holiday and the number of people who celebrate it, according to CNBC, the past few years have seen a tendency for the price of gold to rise around Diwali. Mihir Kapadia, founder & CEO of Sun Global Investments, said, “As heavy consumers, the festive seasons always tend to surge the demand, and considering the current low prices, this should increase the market activity and thus push the prices a little.” Kapadia continued, “We do not expect it to boost prices significantly as the overall market is subdued due to the worries about rising interest rates.”

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How Democrats Killed Their Populist Soul 4

A must read for anyone that wants to understand present days economics and politics. The article, appearing in a leading liberal journal, acknowledges what I have been saying for years, i.e. that what passes for the “Left” in today’s world is simply the left-wing of capitalism allied with the cultural Left that has repudiated whatever populist, libertarian, decentralist, or anti-capitalist tradition the U.S. Left would have ever had. This writer even acknowledges the role of the Dutton strategy in bringing about this state of affairs.

By Matt Stoller

The Atlantic

t was January 1975, and the Watergate Babies had arrived in Washington looking for blood. The Watergate Babies—as the recently elected Democratic congressmen were known—were young, idealistic liberals who had been swept into office on a promise to clean up government, end the war in Vietnam, and rid the nation’s capital of the kind of corruption and dirty politics the Nixon White House had wrought. Richard Nixon himself had resigned just a few months earlier in August. But the Watergate Babies didn’t just campaign against Nixon; they took on the Democratic establishment, too. Newly elected Representative George Miller of California, then just 29 years old, announced, “We came here to take the Bastille.”

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Clinton ‘corrupted,’ but Trump has a ploy, analyst says 4

Press TV. Listen here.

Democratic and Republican nominees at the US 2016 presidential election are both “right” when they accuse one another of “corruption,” an analyst says.

Keith Preston, the chief editor and director at AttacktheSystem.com, made the comments in an interview with Press TV, when asked about recent accusations by Donald Trump against his rival, Hillary Clinton.

Speaking at a rally in suburban Detroit on Friday, Trump said that Clinton and “her co-conspirators” were not above the law and should be held accountable for their deeds, further urging US President Barack Obama to “pledge” not to pardon Clinton, his former secretary of state and once Democratic rival.

Clinton’s use of a private email server in the Obama administration has been used by the Trump campaign and the GOP to question her resolve for national security.

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Meet The Inmate Who Launched A Massive Prison Strike From His Jail Cell 1

On September 9th, 24,000 inmates across the United States launched what they say is the largest prison strike in the nation’s history. VICE News spoke to Bennu Hannibal, a lead organizer in the protest against poor living conditions and forced labor. Hannibal is currently in solitary confinement and although his prison has not gone on strike, he’s used a smuggled phone to inspire prisoners across the country to take action.

Free Alabama Movement website.
Free Alabama Movement Facebook page.

Neoclassical Imperialism Reply

A must read explanation of the contemporary world economic order. This article fits well with my presentation at the National Policy Institute last year. The only real criticism I would have of that article is the author could gain a bit by studying the work of contemporary anarchist, left-libertarian and decentralist economists like Kevin Carson, Fred Foldvary, Will Schnack, Hillel Steiner, Philippe Van Parijs, Peter Vallentyne, and others. The author mentions his familiarity with David Graeber, and seems to regard Graeber favorably, so I suspect he might be open to the ideas of some of these thinkers.The Green-Libertarian alliance against the corporate state that Stewart is recommending is spot on.

By Andrew Stewart

Counterpunch

Recently I had a series of exchanges regarding a column on Israel and Syria that demonstrated to me that there still is a need for further understanding of neoclassical economics even after the release of Michael Hudson’s essential volume Killing the Host. Paul Craig Roberts has previously written a brilliant review of Hudson’s book but perhaps an analysis from the angle of explaining the imperial nature of neoclassical economics is in order.

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Exploring Free Market Anti-Capitalism: Interview with Keith Preston Reply

By Tim Bryant

The Last Vagabond Listen here

o most people, the left and right of the political spectrum are polar opposites, which cannot be linked together due to ideological beliefs that are incompatible. On the surface, this seems to be the case, as political divisions are divergent as ever, especially in the United States. However, unbeknownst to many, including myself until just recently, there is a small faction of people who have attempted to synthesize together, both the right’s idea of free markets and the left’s idea of giving labor their full value, into an all-encompassing belief system that some refer to as Free Market Anti-Capitalism, Left Libertarianism, or Mutualism.

To comprehend the logic behind the term Free Market Anti-Capitalism, we must first begin to understand the historical context, as well as the current use of the word capitalism and socialism. The goal behind this is to allow people on both the left and right to see and appreciate how different ideologies view the term, rather than just being stubborn and only recognizing your own. We won’t solve anything and move forward until we can at least see how the other side defines such key words.

(Related Reading: Bridging The Gap Between Anti-Capitalism and Anti-Statism By Dissecting The Key Words That Divide Us)

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Fiction, Fairy Tales, and Fiat Reply

By Guy Christopher, Originally Published on Money Metals Exchange

Do young Americans today know anything about economics?

No, they don’t, according to a study during the 2016 presidential primary season, which says lots of other Americans don’t either.

The survey found 58% of millennials favor government-run socialism (statistically 6 out of 10), while a nearly identical number (64%) don’t want government interference in free markets.

The incompatible findings make no sense, unless… Americans aged 18-24 simply don’t understand the real meanings of either concept.

Sadly, the study says that’s true of one-third of all Americans. Not a clue. The evidence is the large following behind avowed socialist Bernie Sanders during his presidential campaign.

This lack of understanding is concerning, as the implications for individual lives and the nation’s future are significant. Witness the latest failure of socialism in Venezuela, where millions are rebelling against the government-controlled economy driving their lives into the dirt.

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prison-strike-615x376

Nationally Coordinated Prisoner Strike Began Today 2

In honor of the September 9, 1971 Attica prisoner uprising, a nationally coordinated prisoner work stoppage has begun today. Reports say that a full work stoppage has occurred at Holman prison in Alabama. Chelsea Manning has also begun a hunger strike. Other strikes and actions have been reported in prisons in South Carolina, North Carolina, Kansas, New York, California, Virginia, Florida and Guantanamo. The Nation has reported that this may turn into the largest prison strike in US history.

Organizers have called this strike to end the slave conditions in US prisons, saying:

They may have replaced the whip with pepper spray, but many of the other torments remain: isolation, restraint positions, stripping off our clothes and investigating our bodies as though we are animals.

The full call to action is republished below.


Prisoners from across the United States have just released this call to action for a nationally coordinated prisoner workstoppage against prison slavery to take place on September 9th, 2016.

Get it as a zine PDF. En Espanol or mailroom friendly

This is a Call to Action Against Slavery in America

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New Class War Reply

A must read for anyone that wants to understand present day political, cultural, and class conflict.

By Daniel McCarthy

The American Conservative

Michael Hogue

Michael Hogue

Shock gave way to relief this summer as America’s political establishment—rattled by Donald Trump’s success in winning the Republican nomination—reassured itself of his inevitable defeat come November. For a moment Trump seemed to have created a new style of politics, one that threatened to mobilize working-class voters against the establishment in both parties. But in the weeks following the Democratic National Convention, as Hillary Clinton’s poll numbers remained comfortably ahead of Trump’s, pundits discounted the risk of class war.

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