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View Diary: Economic Democracy - Economic Populism (16 comments)

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  •  Well, the economy is the system of (2+ / 0-)
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    Tanya, dfe

    trade and exchange of goods and services by which humans are mutually sustained.  Democracy, on the other hand, addresses how the ability to control other people (exercise power) is to be allocated in a particular population and over time.
    When the exercise of power is linked with how the necessities of life are acquired, the result is likely to be a deprivation of human rights because power, to be felt, has to hurt.
    When one starts from the premise that people "deserve" some condition, situation, benefit or affliction, then the concept of human rights and entitlement has already been dismissed.  To deserve is to earn, not to have to begin with. In other words, the individual is presumed to have to engage in some socially approved behavior to live -- i.e. "no free lunch."  Sustenance depends on obedience. That is the perspective of conservatives who are committed to a social hierarchy in which some individuals have authority over others and enforce that authority by deciding who gets to eat and who doesn't.

    Of course, the prerequisite to this arrangement is the societal agreement that some people (few or many) are to be granted exclusive ownership of the earth's land masses and oceans, wherever organic life thrives, so that those who don't comply with social strictures can be effectively deprived.  It's not possible to take away lunch from people who survive in the forest on fungi and grubs. Private property rights are the predicate for what some theorists call "political economy"--i.e. the use of the system by which humans are sustained to keep them under control.

    The Constitution assigns power to the people as a whole and quite meticulously lays out which powers and for how long the agents of government are to employ.  However, perhaps because the ownership of some people by others had to be accommodated, the right to own private property trumped human rights from the start.  And it still hasn't stopped, in part because, it has turned out, owning property can be used as a chain.  If a person has to own something to be somebody, then whoever's in charge of making ownership possible (by giving away chunks of the earth that were previously arbitrarily claimed, or by sale), has the power to decide who's somebody and who's not. Indeed, if all ownership has to be mediated by currency, then whoever has control of the currency effectively decides who's in and who's out.  Indeed, that is the controversy of the hour, although not widely spoken about.  Under the Constitution, control of the currency is assigned to the (frequently) elected representatives of the people.  However, some time ago our representatives decided they did not want to be tasked with this onerous responsibility and passed it off to the private banks, which, time and time again, have made a mess of managing the money.  So, the issue of the hour is how the federal government can retrieve what the banksters refer to as "the allocation of credit" -- who decides how much and when other people get to use our currency.
    In point of fact, currency ought to be, like the alphabet, available to anyone who needs/wants to use it.  It should have no intrinsic value, but some people can't get used to that.  They want money to be worth something, even when they don't use it and so they hoard it.  The Treasury keeps making more and the gnomes on Wall Street keep sequestering it or batting it back and forth like a balloon.  They're making it artificially scares in hopes of making it more valuable.  But, what it really does is similar to what happens when there's a leak in the oil pan.  The oil gets drained out and, eventually, the engine gears grind to a halt.  At the moment we're at the stage of topping up the oil every day, instead of fixing the leak.  Of course, the gnomes on Wall Street are harder to deal with than a hole in the oil pan.  And these gnomes have been at it a long time -- at least since Richard Nixon made money grow on trees.

    P.S. I, too, supported Fred Harris.  But, back then Democrats wanted to rule for the people, while Republicans wanted to rule the people and the people ruling themselves was not prominent on the political radar. Public Service was an electric company in NH and community service was/is considered punishment.  That public officials should be public servants was/is not what most politicians aspire to.

    by hannah on Sun Aug 21, 2011 at 03:25:35 AM PDT

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