Social Policy as Social Infrastructure
by Joachim Hirsch, 2003
Work and income must be uncoupled. In Germany, thanks to higher productivity and info-technology, 30% more was produced from 1970-2010 with 30% fewer workers. The state should represent the public and yet special or private interests are int he driver’s seat with deregulation, privatization, and liberalized markets.
Demonizing China will not resuscitate the Rust Belt. Social policy, reducing working hours, sharing work, and state investment are crucial. The Internet, Touchscreen, and the GPS system happened because of state investment and state risk-taking.
Cutting everything but the military (Marc’s note on July 17)
Cutting everything but the military is a sign of arrogance and know-it-all-ism, a contempt for democracy, separation of powers, checks, and balances and the will of the people. The country falls apart from the inside, from its inner contradictions, greed, selfishness and short-term fixation.
Trump represents the running-amok phase, the pathological narcissist encourages the replacement of the constitutional state with the security state. Only owners of capital seem to have enforceable rights. Hope comes from critical and independent media, from outside the box of sycophant corporate representatives and corrupt hypocrites (e.g. Gingrich, Ryan, McConnell).
The attack on the poor, disabled, migrants, seniors, children and students is combined with contempt and demonizing of compromise, concessions, negotiations, and countermeasures. Disdain for history, self-criticism, the social contract, foreign leaders, sharing, the UN and modern challenges are signs of the Hitlerian nightmare of scapegoating, idolizing the soldier, double standards, and one-dimensional corporate or profit worship. Are we headed to the 11th century?
(on July 17)
A broad social discussion and system alternatives are vital. In the states, money is somehow conflated with wisdom. Politicians and football promote cars while the cities become gridlock! The center cannot hold when special and private interests drown out the public interest of community centers and generalized security.
(on July 30)
How great to live in a Sanctuary City!
Our challenge is to promote public investment and an inclusive logic where prosperity, health, security, strength, and success are redefined. Human existence can be in harmony with nature and community when the profit logic is dethroned, when wealth is redistributed and when pluralist economics is encouraged and experienced.
Justin Trudeau, Canada’s Prime Minister, said: when the state trusts citizens, citizens trust the state.
Rightwing propaganda, misanthropy and hundreds of millions of campaign financing endanger our future. immigrants are not taking our jobs or our pensions. Immigrants are often victims of US military coups and power politics and are protected by domestic and international law.
The welcoming tradition is threatened by the tradition of fear-mongering. Scapegoating and Russophobia distract us from public investment and drying up the tax havens.
more at www.onthecommons.org, www.therealnews.org, www.citizen.org, www.openculture.com, and www.grin.com