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Mon Sep 28, 2015, 02:40 PM

Saving Capitalism, For the Many, Not the Few, Robert Reich

Robert Reich gives us the lowdown in a few short minutes on the issue of our time. The many are screwed because the game is rigged for the few wealthiest & it's business as usual, pretending the "free" market dictates...and why it just ain't so. Like we've heard time & time again, the game is rigged. So how do we fix that?

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Reply Saving Capitalism, For the Many, Not the Few, Robert Reich (Original post)
mother earth Sep 2015 OP
Warpy Sep 2015 #1
merrily Sep 2015 #2
tnlurker Sep 2015 #3
Gregorian Sep 2015 #4
mother earth Sep 2015 #5
Gregorian Sep 2015 #6

Response to mother earth (Original post)

Mon Sep 28, 2015, 02:47 PM

1. Capitalism always concentrates wealth into the fewest hands

and has to be saved from itself periodically to work. This has been known for a very long time but conservatives in both parties simply haven't bothered to read the memo.

We know how to fix it. The problem is finding the people with the will to knuckle down and get it done and getting them into office where they can do it. We're fighting the immense power that concentrated money at the top has brought to the few.

When the many start to go hungry, revolutions happen. That's something else we know. Things are bad now but will have to get a little worse before the rich allow change. Only when their own necks are in jeopardy can they be persuaded to share.

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Response to Warpy (Reply #1)

Mon Sep 28, 2015, 03:01 PM

2. Bread and circus. Keep the hoi polloi entertained and minimally fed.

The knew it in Ancient Rome. The French and Russian royals forgot. FDR and LBJ did not forget. New Democrats may have.

And thank heaven for TV and the internet. They beat the Colisseum.

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Response to mother earth (Original post)

Mon Sep 28, 2015, 03:39 PM

4. I love Reich, but I think he's missing it here. What he says is true, but...

He needs to dig a little deeper; go where most economists don't go. Looking at the more basic structure of employer/employee, we see the very crux of the inequality. It isn't fixable, it's the very foundation of capitalism.

My biggest fear is that Bernie is elected, and the people don't unite, and the political system is cast in steel.

We CAN change to a better system/arrangement, but it means a far greater overhaul than I bet his book addresses.

Simply put, my way of stating the change that needs to happen is that the notion of employee simply disappears. We all become owners.

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Response to Gregorian (Reply #4)

Mon Sep 28, 2015, 09:04 PM

5. Your line of thinking is much more in line with Richard D. Wolff's (DemocracyatWork.info),

also see https://www.youtube.com/user/democracyatwrk.

I wouldn't say Reich would be opposed to such reforms but is perhaps more focused on breaking up the monopolies, I would imagine he would embrace such other changes, as it will take many reforms to clean up the debt enslavement and predatory capitalism we have in place.

Here is another article which explains a few of Reich's points as far as reform, and an excerpt with link to the full article:


Thus, Reich touts a handful of well-known reforms to rebalance the current economy’s distortions. Federal antitrust enforcement would help smaller business compete and usher in new entrepreneurial energy. Reversing the decline of labor unions would increase the bargaining power of employees in many industries, who typically have seen their wages stagnate as executive suite pay has skyrocketed. And the benefits given by government to incorporating businesses should be tied to workplace practices. “Limited liability, life in perpetuity, corporate personhood for the purposes of making contracts and the enjoyment of constitutional rights—would be available only to entities that share the gains from the growth with workers while also taking the interests of their communities and the environment into account.”

Personally, I don't know that capitalism isn't "fixable", what we are dealing with is predatory capitalism combined with hijacked gov't. It does not in any way resemble the system that once was, laws are dictated by corporations, corporations and banks are not accountable to law, they merely face fines when they knowingly cause harm and even death, is that what capitalism is? I think not. I think we are dealing with criminality, not an economic force, but a crime wave. Our highest court seems to have turned a blind eye, along with our gov't. How do you fight that?

I do agree a greater overhaul is in order, it's going to take more than an election to cure this. As Richard Wolff says, it's going to take a social movement, Bernie has also said the same. Before we can become "owners" at the workplace, we had better become "owners" of our gov't, we all know things are NOT as they should be.

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Response to mother earth (Reply #5)

Tue Sep 29, 2015, 11:51 AM

6. You're right on the money.

I have to say, what Reich is proposing would go a long way toward helping our situation improve. I have to wonder if, since this is a slow process, his ideas could pave the way for a Marxian economy. Can you say Marxian without losing the audience? I don't think there's a bridge between the two. At some point, through a logical process, a quantum change is required. The boss just has to leave the building, with his payoff, or join the worker/owners.

I am familiar with Wolff. I've been in contact with his group recently with suggestions for getting more media attention.

I don't know if enough people are conscious to even begin this "revolution". Bernie's popularity seems to be an indicator they are.

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