“Limits to Growth” Published Forty Years Ago
by Larry Rasmussen and eco-socialist pamphlets
The MIT scholars under Dennis Meadows came to four core conclusions: 1) there are limits to economic growth on a finite planet, 2) the economy and population are now growing exponentially, 3) exceeding the limits will lead to a collapse of industry, agriculture, and the population, and 4) an orderly withdrawal is possible and a collapse could be avoided through a radical turning away from the growth course.
More raw materials were used up in the first 20 years of the new century than during the entire 20th century. According to Meadows, global food production will peak in 2020. The production of one food calorie in this system requires an average 10 calories in fossil energy. The talk of energy- and resource efficiency is a pure ideology. The way can only be taken against capitalism, not with capitalism.
Video: After Words with Naomi Klein
June 15, 2017 c-span.org, 57 min
Naomi Klein talked about her book No is Not Enough: Resisting Trump’s Shock Politics and Winning the World We Need, in which she discusses shock politics.
All the Lonely People
Narcissism as a Subject Form of Capitalism by Peter Samol, 2016, krisis.org
The narcissist knows only two states: the absolute sense of powerlessness given the foreign determination of his existence and omnipotence fantasies together with the illusion of absolute individual freedom, independence, and unconditionality.
Socialization cannot be left to an unconscious process since society’s underlying values are increasingly dysfunctional. No automatism leads to a liberated society.
Janet Twenge, “The Narcissism Epidemic,” 2009, booktv.org,
Tax Avoidance: Drastic Consequences for the Public
by Philipp Gerhartinger, Nov 6, 2014
Taxes are the most important foundation of all governmental activities and public services. Tax sovereignty is the heart of nation-state sovereignty. The economic activity and profits of multinational corporations cannot be clearly assigned to individual nation states anymore.
Founding offshore partnerships is child’s play. Many fiscal problems would be solved if business tax avoidance and tax fraud were made difficult or prevented.
more at http://www.taxjustice.net
Happy O Canada Day (July 1), the 150th birthday of our great friend to the North!
“When the state trusts citizens, citizens trust the state” (Justin Trudeau).
The 26 community centers in Vancouver B.C. could represent a third way beyond the state and the market. The centers have a cushioning and multiplying effect as surrogate counseling and classroom opportunities. Anyone can use the computers for three hours a day and caserolle dinners are only $4. The Canadian spirit, the thankfulness of being protected from cradle to grave, is encountered everywhere. Do we have anything to learn here?
The Sky Train, the Canada line, and the Evergreen line in Vancouver B.C. are computer-operated light rail lines connecting the whole city, magic trains running every four minuters some since 1986.
When will the US recognize and congratulate Canada and Vancity and break out of its insular, exceptional hubris?
How the World Heads for the Next Crash
by Yves Wegelin, 2017, woz.ch
The greed for money seduced bankers to take greater and greater risks. So they granted mortgages to destitute Americans that they sold as securities to other greedy bankers all around the world. That was the conclusion of the official US investigation of the financial crisis.
Governments secure the money of the rich. State debts have grown in nearly all countries of the world since 2010. Ten years after the outbreak of the financial crisis, the economy is again in a standstill or mired in crisis. Trump wants to cancel the most recent bank regulations and cut taxes for corporations in half.
Triump of the Will was a triumph of propaganda – showing the party at the center of everything.
Corporate profits explode while investments stagnate. Public housing declines with privatization. According to neoliberal theory, higher profits lead to greater investments and more jobs. In truth, higher profits lead to greater use of tax havens, companies buying back their own stock, and more speculation on currencies. The state should represent the public interest and yet special interests or private interests are often in the driver’s seat with deregulation, privatization, and liberalized markets. The state becomes the “errand boy for the banks” (cf. Bill Moyers).
The President as Businessman
by Rudolf Hickel, blaetter.de, June 2017
Trump’s gigantic tax cuts will only benefit the rich. State indebtedness increases on account of neoliberal fiscal policy, not through infrastructure investments.
Revenue losses of over six trillion dollars are expected for the first decade after the Trumpian tax cuts start. In his symbolic politics, Trump sells the illusion that the old order can be restored. Only market efficiency counts for this system, not social justice.
Canceling food, housing, and health care benefits is sadism and greed, not public policy.
The Great Trump Show
by Daniel Leisegang, blaetter.de
The bizarre billionaire becomes an epic disaster when regulation is demonized, social necessities like food stamps and Medicaid are cut in the hundreds of billions and taxes for corporations may be cut in half.
The failure of the media was manifest in unending questions about Hillary’s emails while hardly one reporter asked about Trump’s tax plans. The media underrated Trump in a fatal way and took a bad turn.
With three honest Republicans, the Trump agenda would be jammed. At least we’d no longer be marching into the Stone Age or the Ice Age!