| Marianne Maeckelbergh | The year 2011 has breathed new life into horizontal models of democratic decision-making. With the rise of the 15 May movement and the occupy movement horizontal decision-making became one of the key political structures for organising responses to the current global economic crisis. While this decision-making process has arguably never been as widely practiced as it is today, it has also never seemed as difficult and complicated as it does today. At its height there were 5,000 people at the general assemblies in Placa Catalunya in Barcelona and even more in Madrid. It is no longer just activists trying to use and teach each other these decision-making processes but it is hundreds or thousands of people who have a far greater disparity in terms of backgrounds, starting assumptions, aims and discursive styles. Occupy the US: Musings on Horizontal Decision-Making and Bureaucracy | STIR
Mathematics has an Occupy moment Instead of sitting passively by and allowing a dysfunctional system to detract from a culture, the participants in Occupy want to object, to reform the system, and if that doesn’t work, to build a new system. And the crucial point is that they feel that they have the right (if not obligation) to do so. Moreover, they wish to construct a new paradigm built on democratic understanding of the shared goals of the system itself, rather than letting whomever is in power decide how things work and who benefits.
(PhysOrg.com) -- A new study led by the University of Oxford is looking at how young educated people who are unemployed become politicized in different ways - either through violent struggle or as reformers working for a more equal society. The project is one of the first to compare in depth the experiences across different countries of the young who are educated and yet unemployed. The project focuses on three countries particularly affected by youth unemployment: northern India, Nepal, and Sri Lanka, but the findings will have wider global relevance. Youth unemployment is now a critical problem across the world. It recently propelled uprisings in the Arab world, contributed to sectarian violence in India, and has now reached record highs in the UK. Dr. What happens to the young and educated without a job?
Don’t Tax the Rich. Tax Inequality Itself.
Farmers have been through this before — our lives and livelihoods falling under corporate control. It has been an ongoing process: consolidation of markets; consolidation of seed companies; an ever-widening gap between our costs of production and the prices we receive. Some of us are catching on, getting the picture of the real enemy. The "99 percent" are awakening to the realization that their lives have fallen under corporate control as well. Add up the jobs lost, the health benefits whittled away, and the unions busted, and the bill for Wall Street's self-centered greed is taking a toll. (Brennan Cavanaugh / Flickr)It's not the immigrants, the homeless, the unions, or the farmers that have looted the economy and driven us to the brink of another Great Depression. Occupy the food system
The United States: Inequality and the American Dream
Voting on 3 Quarks Daily’s Best Politics and Social Science Blog Writing Prize is Underway Voting for the finalists in the third annual prize for “the best blog writing in politics & social science” at 3 Quarks Daily has started. Here are the nominees, and here is where to vote. Several friends of the blog are in the running, and if you read this site perhaps you are familiar with their work.
Sarah Palin: How Congress Occupied Wall Street Mark Twain famously wrote, "There is no distinctly native American criminal class except Congress." Peter Schweizer's new book, "Throw Them All Out," reveals this permanent political class in all its arrogant glory. (Full disclosure: Mr. Schweizer is employed by my political action committee as a foreign-policy adviser.)
The Rise of the Cryptocurrency Gift Economy Stacco Troncoso 8th April 2014 P2P Foundation
More than two and a half million Americans slipped into poverty this year bringing the total number of Americans in poverty to 46.2 million. There are millions more Americans near or in danger of going into poverty because they could lose their job, their home to bank foreclosure, or contract a disease or illness that leads to a medical bill they will be unable to pay. Americans have made it a habit of taking time every Thanksgiving (and Christmas) to appreciate how lucky they are despite how poor or worse off they might be this year. This avoids having to show empathy toward Americans, who are struggling and have become victims of economic, political and social structures of America. Occupy Gives Hope to Struggling Americans This Thanksgiving
United States District Judge Jed S. Rakoff is already kind of a hero to me, given that he’s the guy who rejected a “do not admit wrongdoing” settlement between Citigroup and the SEC over mortgage-backed securities fraud because, according to Rakoff, the proposed settlement was “neither fair, nor reasonable, nor adequate, nor in the public interest.” More recently Rakoff has written a fine essay in the New York Review of Books entitled The Financial Crisis: Why Have No High-Level Executives Been Prosecuted? which I will summarize below but is well worth your time to read. Rakoff’s essay First Rakoff made the point that if there was no intentional fraud we should not scapegoat people and put them to jail. #OWS
Chart of the Day: LATAM doing it right in the Middle Great and expansive front-page WSJ feature from 15th. Disappointing to the anti-globalization crowd, but it's been very, very good to LATAM, decreasing its poor and increasing its middle class in a steady fashion since Cold War's end. A realistic snapshot: The expanding middle is benefiting from a strong period of economic growth—fueled by high commodity prices in many countries—along with more aggressive social programs with a decided focus on education.But the advances are still tenuous, and the possibility of a global recession haunts the prospects of los emergentes—the emerging ones—as marketers call the newly minted middle-class members. Protecting what's gone on there is such a huge - even worldwide - responsibility.
While the Occupy Wall Street (OWS) movement has been gaining momentum, growing in terms of visibility, media coverage and sheer numbers of participants, it has had a difficult time “occupying” the Twitter trending topics (TTs) list. #OccupyWallStreet, the movement’s dominant hashtag, has never once hit the New York TTs list. Similarly, #OccupyBoston has trended all across the world, but never in Boston, which only saw the phrases ‘Dewey Sq’ and ‘Dewey Square’ trend. Some point the blame at Twitter for censoring content, yet what seems to be happening is purely algorithmic. Data Reveals That “Occupying” Twitter Trending Topics is Harder Than it Looks!
It was inevitable that a movement which has struggled to agree on a manifesto, would in the end, do the bidding of the very elite globalist powers that they are demonstrating against to begin with. Instead of achieving freedom from Central Bank debt enslavement, naive Occupiers appear to have taken the bait, pulling the mob towards endorsing a global taxation system, and one to be administered…by a brand new global government body. As the Occupy Movement sets its sights on the upcoming G20 Summit in France on November 3-4, its globalist handlers behind the scenes have succeeded in carefully directing its crowds towards the Holy Grail of all socialist super-states - the celebrity supported, trendy “Robin Hood Tax”, also known as a Tobin Tax, a financial transaction tax levied on all transactions involving shares, bonds and derivatives. The Robin Hood Tax: Occupy Movement now Marching Straight Off the Globalist Cliff
Here's the Risk: "Occupy" ends up doing the bidding of the global elite History shows us it is easy for ‘grassroots’ campaigns to become co-opted by the very interests they are fighting against. A 21st-century grassroots movement faces many pitfalls. This was as true back in 1968 as it is today.
Who invented the iPhone: The public and common origin of private innovation Excerpted from Gar Alperovitz: “Take an obvious example: Many of the advances that have propelled our high-tech economy in recent decades grew directly out of research programs financed and, often, collaboratively developed, by the federal government and paid for by the taxpayer. The Internet, to take the most well-known example, began as a government defense project, the Advanced Research Projects Agency Network (ARPANET), in the 1960s. Today’s vast software industry rests on a foundation of computer language and operating hardware developed, in large part, with public support. The Bill Gateses of the world might still be working with vacuum tubes and punch cards were it not for critical research and technology programs created or financed by the federal government.
A Post-Growth Economy FAQ ‘I don’t want to live in an economy where everything is the same, where progress is halted and human creativity is stifled’, is a common response to post-growth theories. I agree absolutely – I wouldn’t wish to live in that kind of economy either. The new economy doesn’t hit the pause button on progress, innovation, science, creativity, culture or change, and neither does it go backwards. It just sets some new parameters, and will therefore deliver a different kind of change. Instead of bigger, we’ll have to develop better; qualitative change rather than quantitative.
Where does Money come From (1): The consequences of a privately-created money system
Juliet Schor talks on the plenitude of the commons economy at #OccupyWallStreet
Insight: The Wall Street disconnect
Occupy divides over whether to make demands - US news - Life
Global protests: is 2011 a year that will change the world? | World news
Commentary and Observations
1% vs 99%