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View Diary: I am Spartacus (235 comments)

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  •  A carefully constructed social pressure (7+ / 0-)

    can be even more powerful than a government that insists on certain behaviors.  When the government is run by those who want us to shop, and when the entire media apparatus is funded by goading us to shop, the social pressure is easy to shape.

    Some people are like blotters -- they soak it all up but get it all backward.

    by Granny Doc on Sun Jun 15, 2008 at 05:56:39 AM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  Well, (8+ / 0-)

      it seems the most interesting and practical question here is: "To what degree and in what way will our new administration reverse this trend?"

      "Museum, Inc: Inside the Global Art World" (University of Chicago Press). "Musée et cie : Globalisation de la culture" (The Orange Press).

      by Paul Werner on Sun Jun 15, 2008 at 05:59:52 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I'm a realist. (7+ / 0-)

        Probably not nearly as much as we would wish.  Obama is a product of Chicago machine politics and what ever his intent, he grew into this league by playing outstanding ball in the minors.  I will not lose hope.  But, neither will expect a miraculous transformation to occur immediately.

        Some people are like blotters -- they soak it all up but get it all backward.

        by Granny Doc on Sun Jun 15, 2008 at 06:03:26 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I believe there are very practical and concrete (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Granny Doc, Cronesense, James Kresnik

          ways in which each of us might be able to bring some pressure to bear in that direction. Mine is obviously in the area of culture. As for a "miraculous transformation," f*ck that.

          "Museum, Inc: Inside the Global Art World" (University of Chicago Press). "Musée et cie : Globalisation de la culture" (The Orange Press).

          by Paul Werner on Sun Jun 15, 2008 at 06:09:26 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I have been beating a big drum (16+ / 0-)

            for a very long time, with no results.

            We could bring this entire system down if we just stopped buying things.  No new "improved" appliances.  No new slave wage produced designer clothing.  No new autos, or lawn mowers.  No new gigantic "flat screens".  Nothing but the food we need to keep us alive, and the immediate goal of eliminating debt.

            As long as we are willing to go into debt, in the belief that we can't survive with out the latest gee gaw, they will have us by the short hairs.

            Some people are like blotters -- they soak it all up but get it all backward.

            by Granny Doc on Sun Jun 15, 2008 at 06:13:05 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I'd love to discuss this further... (4+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              L0kI, the fan man, Granny Doc, Scubaval

              ...right now, unfortunately, I have to see to the glair (the goo you make out of eggs that you use to grind colors for painting); after which I should really make some more pasta in the pasta machine, so I can have something to eat tomorrow after walking home from my job at the Museum...

              "Museum, Inc: Inside the Global Art World" (University of Chicago Press). "Musée et cie : Globalisation de la culture" (The Orange Press).

              by Paul Werner on Sun Jun 15, 2008 at 06:25:24 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  Amen to that (5+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              rlharry, zett, NC Dem, Granny Doc, imchange

              That was an attitude I adopted when Reagan started his second term. Wasn't hard. We weren't even close to middle-class back then, and basically didn't have a pot or window. But I went into doubletime to change that.

              It worked to a large degree. I have a nice, if modest home, good amount of fertile land, no mortgage, no loans, one credit card that's always paid in full. Every spare penny is socked away in savings... okay, it's not worth as much as promised, it's still there. Now we're working to make our place even more self-sustaining, but nothing is bought unless there's no other way to do what needs done.

              I'm as nervous as the next person at what's happening, but I'm not nearly as panic-stricken as I'd be if I hadn't changed my ways back when. I also have the satisfaction of knowing I'm not feeding the vampire.

              Meddle not in the affairs of dragons... for thou art crunchy and good with ketchup.

              by Pariah Dog on Sun Jun 15, 2008 at 06:47:49 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  Granny Doc, this is my thoughts, too. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Granny Doc

              Off and on, in these diaries, I've proposed the idea of a weekend when people agree to just stay home, not shop, not buy gas and travel, just kick back and spend time with friends and family and stop consuming. There is nothing that would make the point more strongly than this -- or strike more fear into the heart of a capitalist.

              Also, I feel there is great power in targeted strikes, but there also is a built-in reluctance/ambivalence/bias against such actions in the American psyche -- tho' this may give way a little as the unions become strengthened.

              But I see potential. With proper education, the price of oil could be the leverage for a great change in the mindset of Americans, motivating and empowering them to develop a different view of their role in this society and begin shaping it rather than being shaped by it. That, after all, is the heart of an active and engaged democratic society, and it certainly would give new and bolder meaning to the name of our Party.

              "Everything we do or say should be done or said consciously."

              by TheWesternSun on Sun Jun 15, 2008 at 10:57:32 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  OMG Granny Doc (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Granny Doc

              If we did what you are suggesting at least half of my family would commit suicide.  

              I can't remember the last time we had a family gathering that didn't include everyone sitting around the table with the latest ads from the store discussing what they were going to buy.  

              These are die hard shoppers.  The day after Thanksgiving they are at the stores at 6:00AM and they don't leave until the stores close.

              As a matter of fact the only time they ever come to visit is when they have something new they want to show off.  It has been this way since I was a little girl.

              They have closets full of clothes with the tags still on them.  Several of them have filed for bankruptcy more than once.  

              They can't even see people who aren't wearing the latest name brand clothing.  

              Whatever would they find to talk about?

        •  Sorry Granny. (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          L0kI, Granny Doc, Scubaval

          That's not true in the slightest.  I have been an active supporter of Obama's since 2002.  He was most definately NOT a product of the Chicago political machine.  We had to fight the machine even back then.  

          Dan Hines was Daley's guy.  All the Ward captains were backing Hines.  Obama was the outsider and a long shot because he had already lost to Bobby Rush for a congressional seat and not seen as having the "black" support from the Southside.

          As usual, Obama came out of nowhere.  Once Obama clinched the primary, THEN the mayor and the Ward captains eventually came on board.

          So, please, kill that meme.  It's absolutely not true.

          truth, kindness, endurance, Obama '08

          by CupofTea on Sun Jun 15, 2008 at 01:12:54 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Actually (6+ / 0-)

        I think the most interesting and practical question is "What do we demand of the new administration?"

        Obama can only do so much.

        It's not the man, it's the mandate. The more we ask of them, the more our leaders can and will do for us.

        This is why dreams are important. This is why inspiration is critical. Because they remind you of who you are, who you want to be.

        Then we will know what to ask for, and we will know what is not acceptable. And the fog of national confusion will lift.

        The sleep of reason brings forth monsters.

        by beijingbetty on Sun Jun 15, 2008 at 06:13:00 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  The Obama administration is keenly aware... (5+ / 0-)

             of the rising expectations of a new administration. He is currently moving slowly to the center on some issues. It is painful to watch. Samantha Powers spoke on the expectations for him before she left the campaign.
              To re-gain some of the middle class, it is imperative to reward labor more than paper profit, produce a tangible product that has worth and value, add regulations with teeth and consequences for those who violate them, and a recognition that more is expected of the rich and powerful to assist those in need.

          Eisenhower- "We cannot mortgage the material assets of our grandchildren without risking the loss also of their political and spiritual heritage."

          by NC Dem on Sun Jun 15, 2008 at 07:46:16 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

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