Skip to main content

My better half and I were watching Warren Beatty’s Reds on Netflix the other night, and as our marvelous wireless society so often tempts us, we downloaded Ten Days That Shook The World by John Reed free on kindle, and Lenin’s A Letter To American Workingmen, also free. Here are the two money quotes that practically lept off the screen at me:

By developing the productive forces of organized human labor, by utilizing machines and all the wonders of technique America has taken the first place among free and civilized nations. But at the same time America, like a few other nations, has become characteristic for the depth of the abyss that divide a handful of brutal millionaires who are stagnating in a mire of luxury, and millions of laboring starving men and women who are always staring want in the face.    - Lenin
The speculators took advantage of the universal disorganization to pile up fortunes, and to spend them in fantastic revelry or the corruption of government officials. Foodstuffs and fuel were hoarded, or secretly sent out of the country to Sweden.    - John Reed
So 100 years and nothing’s changed in political theory, or political reality, for that matter. The gulf is still there, and no one doubts for a moment that the wealthy would hoard and keep medicine and food from the poor.

Which brings me to the dreaded the S word:  sustainability. Some claim it is a meaningless term, in that it simplifies many compound and complex problems. Be that as it may, just like the Russian revolution, nothing will happen until we’re forced into dismantling the old industrial complex and build an ecologically sustainable economy. To begin, I suggest buckling down and securing basic human rights to access to water and locally produced food stuffs, and then embracing a new minimalism by removing the demand for consumption of useless products. Ah, yes, it all sounds so simple. The ramblings of an old man shouting revolutionary slogans. But the old, see, have little left to lose, and will be the first to be cast aside.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site