Macro-economic and ecological connections are simply ignored with the concentration on short-term profit. The planned reduction of corporate taxes from the current 35% to 15 or 20% recalls the Laffer-curve as the basis of Reagan’s fiscal policy error. Additional investments of businesses should not be expected. Pressure on the state budget will increase through tax shortfalls. The division between rich and poor will intensify.
The government ideology of the US follows the shady business model of the former real-estate tycoon Trump. The daily stock prices of US corporations is the focus. The necessary social and ecologicaL sustainability doesn’t have a chance.
Here is a link to the 38-page Oxfam “Rigged Reform” on the top 50 US corporations and their tax avoidance lobbying. Between 2009 and 2015, they stashed $1.6 trillion in tax havens and received $460 billion in tax cuts.
Tax dodging by multinational corporations costs the US approximately
$135 billion each year. But these schemes do not just harm the US. The same tactics corporations use to dodge US taxes sap an estimated $100 billion every year from poor countries, preventing crucial investments in schools, hospitals, roads, and other tools to reduce poverty. The harm done to Americans and people living in poor countries by corporate tax dodging are two sides of the same coin…
Poverty Returns with Misguided Policy by Franz Segbers
The state should represent the public interest and yet private or special interests are in the driver’s seat with privatization, deregulation and liberalized markets.
Trump’s proposed 2018 budget is a sledgehammer with cuts to EPA, Meals-on-Wheels, school lunches, WIC food assistance, PBS, Legal Services Corp and more. The state should not be the “errand boy” for the banks (Bill Moyers). Majority rule must be balanced by minority protection for the state to be legitimate (Lani Guinier). Indifference is love’s enemy. The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.
The rulers integrate the ruled in their “hegemony.” The essential task of our party consists in conquering power for the working class, The phase we are going through is a transition phase in the struggle for power, a phase of agitation, propaganda, and organization.
I believe life means taking sides. Indifference is apathy, parasitism, cowardice and is the opposite of life. The governed should be intellectually independent of the governing.
Private Enterprise Committed to Social Interests
interview with Joachim Beerhorst, March 2017
Social needs like energy- and water supply, the waste industry, education, senior pensions and health care are better solved publically than privately.
While economic democracy is not presently a mass theme, people are activated when they feel they are gaining influence on their own affairs through expanded joint determination – in the existential questions of work and the economy.
The profit expectations of capital should be understood as socially adjustable and not as an economic law… Over against the “terror of the economy,” there are no certainties but potentials based on experience for realizing the political concept “democratization of the economy.”
Sophie Jaenicke works as a union secretary with IG Metal.
Rethinking Working Hours
by Sophie Jaenicke, 3/15/17
Working hours were and are a contested terrain. Power questions are involved: Who decides over time? Who determines when and how long someone works? Who decides over part-time or full-time, how work and private life are arranged or whether the dream of world travel becomes reality?
Introduction into the thematic areas
– Europe swing to the right – fight back!
– Fortress Europe – refugees welcome!
– Neoliberalism in Europe – stop austerity
– New social movements in Europe – organize the change
After the economic crisis in 2008, the neoliberal fairytale of austerity was given a new boost. The neoliberal ideology reflects the idea the dismantling of the welfare state is urgently needed… [more]
Europe turn left!
Introduction into the thematic areas
In recent years, the European idea is being questioned and offensively attacked more than ever. Anti-European movements such as the Brexit or the spread of right-wing populism are leading to an increasing re-nationalization. The project of a united Europe sticking together in peace is threatened. The young generation, however, has developed a certain sense of Europeanism and shows solidarity with refugees and people in dire need. The construction of Fortress Europe, though, is completely contrary to what they consider as European values. Nevertheless, many young people living without any prospects and under unemployment or precarious employment relationships are lacking an idea of how the European Union can promote their interests – or of how European solidarity could look like.
We want to carry out an in depth-analysis of the situation(s) in Europe and discuss and discover the current struggles and utopias together with comrades and friends from Germany and Europe. To this end, we have divided the programme into four pillars:
Europe swinging to the right – fight back!
“Law and Justice” in Poland, the Front National in France, the FPÖ in Austria, the Alternative for Germany – there is an alarming swing to the right across Europe which on the one hand, is reflected by recent electoral successes and which long since, on the other hand, leads to growing hatred and violence. For us it is not enough to explain the success of right-wing populists through peoples’ discontent regarding the current policy and their alleged fears. Nor can we blame it on the arrival of refugees or the global terrorism.
Right-wing ideologies have never disappeared from Europe and now are given new, civic look filled with hatred. The so-called “bourgeois middle-class” experiences an authoritarian intensification and fears social decline. This agitation provides breeding ground for racist and inhuman violence – against refugees, people of colour, and leftists. In recent years, the Falken and the Jusos are more and more becoming targets of attacks. We count on democratic discourse and solidarity to help against agitation. We represent the leftist answer to this right-wing populism.
Neoliberalism in Europe – stop austerity!
After the economic crisis in 2008, the neoliberal fairytale of austerity was given a new boost. The neoliberal ideology reflects the idea the dismantling of the welfare state is urgently needed. Austerity means that all state expenditures are reduced to a minimum so that on paper, the state has a balanced budget. For the people, in turn, this means receiving bad or hardly any services and as a result suffering culturally, socially and in health.
Due to the crisis as well as the bad policy of the European Central Bank many countries, in particular in South Europe, got caught in a debt trap. The answer of the neoliberal policy was to keep those countries alive through emergency credits and force them to radically cut down their expenditures. Austerity being a salutary concept has been refuted more than seventy years ago. All the same, the governments have opted for this way. The result is high unemployment, increased infant mortality, the return of long repressed diseases due to a bad provision of healthcare, evictions for families etc.
We will look for alternative economic approaches on both greater and smaller scale – for this purpose we will invite leftist theorists, politicians as well as cooperative collectives and activists.
Fortress Europe – refugees welcome!
More than 5.000 people have drowned in 2016, fleeing to Europe. Myriad of people have died on their way across the mainland. The one responsible for the fatalities at Europe’s external borders is the EU’s and its Member States’ asylum policy. We want that people asking for asylum are not forced to risk their life any longer in order to receive shelter. Further, the repulse of refugees through so-called third countries cooperating with the EU to secure the borders has to end.
It is not the refugees who have to be fought but the causes of flight. Due to its export of military equipment Europe contributes to the fact that people are forced to flee.
Together with refugees and activists we will discover the opportunities of showing solidarity with refugees and of how the fortress Europe can be dismantled.
New social movements in Europe – organise the change!
There are many young people being interested in politics and wanting to change things. However, they do not feel as if they belong to one of the social democratic or socialist parties. Instead, they get involved in organisations, movements and collectives outside the spectrum of political parties. We know: Outrage alone is not sufficient. Just reusing old formulas is not sufficnet either, though. Youth organizations have to consider it as their task to enter into dialogue and form the link between established parties and extra-parliamentary movements.
On this account, we invite organizations, movements and collectives from different countries to explain to us what they are fighting for. Together we will examine the question of why people are turning away from leftist parties and to which extent leftist parties are needed in order to general a social change and accomplish social justice. At the same time, we will not only seek links but also a way of how to work together on projects promoting a just future.
© 2017 SJD – Die Falken. All rights reserved.
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The odds on a Trump resignation are 11:10, almost even money – for the sake of the Trump brand!
Trumponomics: causes and prospects
by L. Randall Wray real-world economics review
As I wrote in 2012, “Here in the U.S., Donald Trump is known as a cartoonish buffoon
But he’s no laughing matter in Scotland where he buys off the government and destroys a pristine and fragile coastal sand dune to build the world’s biggest golf course. This moving documentary follows the efforts of the ordinary folk to preserve a fishing and farming community that, supposedly, stands in the way. You’ve Been Trumped
is essential viewing for developing an understanding of the issues surrounding unchecked development, its impact on environmental sustainability, the unholy alliance of big money and public policy, and the consequence of excessive inequality that has divided our modern world..
For a Positive Narrative of the Left
by Michael Brie, 3/4/17
Whether the dislocations and cyclical crises since 2008 will lead to its final farewell is a question that drives parts of the middle-class and not only the left. There is wide agreement that the capitalism as we know it will not exist anymore within a few years…
Two irreversible consequences of the growth-driven and goods-producing production method are manifest: the resources of the planet are plundered and capital exploitation hits its limits.
Trump is determined to reduce government to chaos!
The Paranoid Style in American Politics by Richard Hofstadter, Harpers, November 1964
“The megalomaniac’s view of oneself as the Elect, wholly good, abominably persecuted, yet assured of ultimate triumph; the attribution of gigantic and demonic powers to the adversary; the refusal to accept the ineluctable limitations and imperfections of human existence, such as transience, dissention, conflict, fallibility whether intellectual or moral; the obsession with inerrable prophecies…systematicized misinterpretations, always gross and often grotesque.”
“The paranoid is a militant leader. He does not see social conflict as something to be mediated and compromised, in the manner of the working politician. Since what is at stake is always a conflict between absolute good and absolute evil, what is necessary is not compromise but the will to fight things out to a finish.”
For an Unconditional Basic Income
More Prosperity for Everyone
by Thomas Straubhaar, 3/9/17
The basic income corrects the distribution effects of the labor market. It takes something from the higher paid to give to those who earn little or nothing. A leftist fights for a just social system. Robots and artificial intelligence replace human labor. Fears of changes should be confronted with a basic security.