[sixties-l] [Fwd: [BRC-NEWS] Markets 'R' Us, Not Them]

From: Ted Morgan (epm2@lehigh.edu)
Date: Fri Nov 02 2001 - 10:27:28 EST

  • Next message: aehunt@watarts.uwaterloo.ca: "[sixties-l] Re: Gitlin on the War"

    Thought this would be of interest, and certainly relevance!

    -------- Original Message --------
    > ----------
    > From: Frank Scott
    > Sent: Friday, November 2, 2001 8:05 AM
    > To: brc-news@lists.tao.ca
    > Subject: [BRC-NEWS] Markets 'R' Us, Not Them
    > [Admin Note: This article by Frank Scott was written BEFORE
    > September 11th, but the material is still quite relevant and
    > frankly, it's kind of spooky when you read the reference to
    > Bin Laden and CIA ineptitude. I'm pretty sure the FBI paid
    > Mr. Scott a visit already. Frank, you still there? Frank?!]
    > http://www.coastalpost.com/01/9/12.htm
    > Coastal Post
    > September 2001 [Volume 26, Number 9]
    > Markets 'R' Us, Not Them
    > By Frank Scott <frank@marin.cc.ca.us>
    > A bipartisan coalition of Reaganoids and Clintonites has
    > strengthened the contemporary chorus chanting the mantra of
    > free market religion to "get government off our backs".
    > Liberated from this burden, part-time citizens have become
    > full-time consumers, groveling at the shrine on the mall and
    > incurring ever more debt. This, in pursuit of freedom only
    > available to those who "shop until they drop" to a kneeling
    > position at the altar of the private market.
    > The rule of capital has become furious in its assault on
    > anything public. Under the euphemistic label
    > "globalization", which makes the theft of everything sound
    > progressive, this speed-up of private domination is the most
    > regressive and dangerous problem facing humanity.
    > It mounts the pressures of daily life, raising the bills,
    > lowering the state of mind, clouding the consciousness and
    > fouling the atmosphere. Followers of fashion become
    > casualties of commerce, always out of style and never having
    > content; bigotry and inhumanity lead to identity politics
    > and the victimology of the status quo, rather than
    > collective politics and the psychology of social change;
    > needed shelter for workers near their work becomes town
    > houses for the affluent far from any towns; reality is
    > experienced more on streets and roadways, and less in homes
    > and communities; and new labels preserve old outrages by
    > expanding markets for law, with hate crimes selling at the
    > justice mall alongside - love crimes?
    > The most ridiculous policies pass nearly unquestioned.
    > Faith-based charity? Why not, since the other kind was
    > destroyed, and it was never more than a prop for the status
    > quo. Star Wars space defense, even without a Soviet Menace?
    > Sure, since Bin Laden or another poster-boy for corporate
    > militarism might attack from his base in, uh, wherever he's
    > hiding, spied on by our multi-billion dollar Keystone Kops
    > in the CIA and NSA who never know anything until after it
    > happens.
    > The rush to privatize everything has further sickened an
    > already diseased social organism. Instead of ridding our
    > nation of ghettos, we add to their number by creating moving
    > versions called highways. On these wastes of real estate,
    > millions are in motion but locked up in time, using
    > substantial parts of their lives to phone, eat, listen and
    > shop while driving. These were things that people used to do
    > at less than 65 miles an hour, assuming anyone can reach
    > that speed on our cluttered freeways.
    > Our individualism, once a strength, has become a collective
    > mental illness. How else to explain a transport system that
    > moves one person at a time, in more than a ton of resources
    > each, powered by fossil fuel, creating pollution,
    > congestion, designed rape of the environment and a death
    > toll that would be intolerable if we controlled our senses,
    > let alone our politics.
    > What public system would be tolerated that kills hundreds,
    > cripples thousands, and causes property damage in the
    > millions, every single day? Our private transit system is
    > dumber and deadlier than any president. Once, we lived
    > closer to our toil, or had public transit to get us there;
    > now, we live miles from our work, in suburban bliss that has
    > helped create community ugliness and dysfunctional culture.
    > We have to provide our own transit, pay for it in dollars,
    > health and stress, and consider ourselves blessed to have
    > such freedom. The triumph of private capital, or the loss of
    > public sanity?
    > As more government is perverted in service to the market,
    > the obsession with our economy's private parts focuses on
    > molesting our best public program; Social Security. However
    > primitive it is compared to the social democratic programs
    > of more civilized nations, this system of protection for
    > retired workers has been an oasis of humanity in a desert of
    > alienation. Anxious to get their hands on a pot of public
    > gold, fanatics of finance insist that it will go broke if
    > not privatized, unconsciously indicting the whole system
    > with such charges.
    > Despite fairly common knowledge that Social Security can
    > survive 35 more years without any change at all, and that it
    > possesses more than a trillion dollars in government bonds,
    > they insist it's in danger and can only be saved by - guess
    > what? Private Investment! Bow your head, stare at your
    > crotch, mumble a market prayer and try not to think about
    > the deflated stock market, hosts of laid off workers and
    > rising consumer debt. Let's have workers rely on the Wall
    > Street gambling casino for the little they now gain from
    > what should be called Social Insecurity, but will seem
    > marvelous by comparison with what we get if we allow it to
    > be stolen by these thieving corporadoes.
    > It should be clear by now that the massive injection of
    > private capital into the public bloodstream has created an
    > epidemic of waste, poverty and death, threatening the world
    > with increased personal, social and environmental problems.
    > This single-minded pursuit of private profit will bring more
    > public loss the longer we allow its domination of human
    > affairs.
    > Only the immune system of a democratic citizens movement can
    > cure this disease and solve the political problem of
    > minority control of global economics. As that immune system
    > seems to get stronger, the resistance of profiteers from the
    > disease becomes more deadly. Like the mad doctors of pulp
    > science fiction, they will stop at nothing to protect their
    > private monster from an aroused public who understand that
    > it means their ruin.
    > The global demonstrators against international finance are
    > trying to wake the world to this menace, and show that the
    > public can be, must be greater than the sum of its private
    > parts. This new movement has started a march on the castle
    > of capital, and stopped obeying the robber barons within its
    > walls. It's time for the rest of us to join them, in spirit
    > if not in body, or both will ultimately be lost.
    > Copyright (c) 2001 Frank Scott. All Rights Reserved.
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