Climate & Capitalism: Hung for a Sheep as for a Lamb

By: Wednesday September 10, 2014 3:46 pm

Global warming and capitalist history

I don’t know if you caught Chomsky’s most recent column, as reproduced in the pixels over at Alternet: “U.S. Plunges the Cradle of Civilization into Disaster, While Its Oil-Based Empire Destroys the Earth’s Climate.” There’s some good stuff there, but Chomsky finds it hard to remain focused when he’s pouring on the dire warnings. After some dire warnings about Mideast politics, he proceeds to discuss the most recent IPCC draft report. Here’s some good news: the IPCC is now on the side of the “keep the grease in the ground” movement, the movement I suggested back in 2009.

 

Society as a Failed Experiment

By: Tuesday September 2, 2014 6:10 pm

There’s little dispute among social scientists that most of our major public programs are counter-productive on their own terms. There is also little analysis of this phenomenon as a pattern in need of an explanation and a solution.

Prisons are supposedly intended to reduce crime, but instead increase it. Young people who when they commit crimes are arrested and punished become much more likely to commit crimes as adults than are those young people who when they commit crimes are just left alone.

Worker Solidarity, Eugene Debs and Why Labor Day Isn’t International Workers’ Day

By: Monday September 1, 2014 12:01 pm

Even after 50 years of stagnant wages, union-busting, job outsourcing, and the appalling lapdoggery of politicians in both legacy parties who serve the interests of the modern oligarchs – we are obliged to stand with our fellow workers and acknowledge that our work makes our land. And, remember also that it is not to enrich the selfish wealthy that we work…at least that is what Eugene Debs believed.

FDL Book Salon Welcomes Paul LeBlanc and Dianne Feeley, Imagine: Living In A Socialist USA

By: Sunday August 31, 2014 1:59 pm

New York’s most progressive literary agent, Francis Golden, who is now ninety years old, once again put her energies where her mind is asking thirty-one progressive writers to imagine how life would change for Americans were we to enjoy a socialist-oriented government. I say enjoy because I’ve lived half my life under such governments in both Western and the former Eastern Europe, and I can testify to the fact that life is a great deal easier when national governments are organized around principles of solidarity.

Savage Capitalism Returns As Recovery Misses Working Class

By: Wednesday August 27, 2014 12:12 pm

Though Thomas Piketty’s book Capital In The 21st Century has proved popular among establishment intellectuals, the research in the book validates one of the most common radical critiques of capitalism – that when unrestrained by governments or social movements capitalism is a reckless and malevolent enterprise. And so after 30 years of Neoliberalism savage capitalism is now back according to David Graeber.

Will Alternative Energy Save Capitalism?

By: Sunday August 10, 2014 4:00 pm

Every time I publish a diary like this one (“Promoting an Effective Discussion: Capitalism Causes Climate Change,” 8/3/14), I get responses from patrons of alternative energy. Solar panels and wind farms will save the Earth, the world-society, and the capitalist system, from the prophesies of doom accompanying abrupt climate change, they imply.

How Worshiping The Market Can Bring Ebola to the US

By: Wednesday July 30, 2014 4:53 pm

We are focusing on Ebola because it is news. We won’t get Ebola here in the US for a number of reasons. One reason is Ebola doesn’t have a good lobbying and PR firm. When it comes to infectious diseases, it helps to have people in high places. People who want to describe their pathogen as “naturally occurring,” who delay life saving performance standards, dictate which words doctors can use to describe a condition and most astonishingly, convince everyone the burden of protection is on the victims in order to avoid responsibility for their problems.

Late Night: Piketty’s Failure of Nerve, or Why Marx Is Still the Boogeyman

By: Sunday July 27, 2014 8:00 pm

Piketty’s emphatic denial of Marxian influence on his work – and the fact that he felt compelled to make it in the first place – is quite telling. The decades of heavy-duty demonizing dumped on Marx by capitalism’s cheerleaders, particularly in the United States, have scared people away from studying his work to the point where even a French economist is quick to deny being contaminated by the thoughts of the Great Satanic Boogeyman.

Freedom, Money & Control

By: Monday July 21, 2014 7:15 pm

Money is violence

Our system of money visits violence on people. Economic sanctions are an obvious example:

New Zealand Church Can’t Find Advertising Regulations in King James’ Edition

By: Wednesday July 2, 2014 6:15 pm

In America, where Christians have the hobby of lobbying the courts and their legislators for all kinds of special treatment, the faithful, with little green papers stamped with the words “In God We Trust” in their pockets, listen to all sorts of self-appointed (and often finely appointed) ministers who advise the poor and sick that god really wants them to be wealthy and healthy, and who promise that they can be all helpy — while separating the faithful from their dollars in a manner that’s stealthy.

In New Zealand, where the government attempts to encourage even those who claim spiritual motivation to make honest representations as they ply their wares, ordered an evangelical church to cease advertising so-called “healing sessions” due to the fact that there is no medical evidence that prayer is capable of healing the health problems that their adverts suggest it can.

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