Friday, February 18, 2011

 The Class War Heats Up

The past three days I've caught part of the Randi Rhodes radio talk show and all three days she was talking about Labor. Labor issues. She recognizes that the ruling class, through its recently rejuvenated Republican handmaidens, has stepped up the pace of the class war. They may well be going in for the kill.

Although Rhodes talks about it in mainly political terms, it's the class war the rich have been waging against us since the advent of Reaganomics, also known as Neoliberalism or Thatcherism. It's worldwide, actually. She focuses on Wisconsin, where a Republican tea bagger supported governor created a budget crisis and is using it an an excuse to try to decimate public sector unions, and the unions are fighting back.

As I have mentioned, we, the working class, are losing this battle. We are losing in terms of our standard of living and we are losing the propaganda war, the war of public opinion. We are sorely outgunned in that regard.

They, the ruling class, can see what is happening in other parts of the world right now, particularly the Middle East. People are rising up, and as happened in the 1960s, these things sometimes occur in waves. One of the US ruling class' main thinkers, Zbigniew Brzezinski, has been warning about this very thing happening for years. He points out that the information age has resulted in there being almost no place in the world where the general public is not aware of what is happening and is politically engaged. We see this, and these uprisings, as good things. The ruling class and government officials warn each other, increase domestic surveillance and riot squad training and discuss legislating internet kill switches. Such is the relationship between the government and the ruling class, in the United States and wherever Capitalism reigns.

We are also disadvantaged in that if something does break out here, or, if conservatism simply becomes discredited as it did in the 1960s and there is opportunity for political change -- i.e., Reform as opposed to Revolution -- there is nothing to fill what would be a power vacuum. We have no institutions, no political parties, no large union base, and as happened in the 1960s, change was quickly co-opted by the ruling class and comodified. Rebels like Jesse Jackson, Tom Hayden and John Lewis were invited into the halls of power. Groups like large environmental organizations and the National Organization of Women likewise traded access for their previous edginess and became part of the establishment.

Therefore it's important to be ready, to think about and discuss alternatives to the current political paradigm. To conceive. To imagine.

It's also possible that nothing will happen, in the short run, and that things have to get even worse before Americans wake up from their materialist, propaganda-induced stupor. If that is the case, keep your bung hole covered up.

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