Wednesday, October 5, 2005

Everywhere democracy

I've said this before, but it's on my mind.

Why do we demand political democracy while accepting economic dictatorships? Why don't we demand economic democracy as well? We elect our political leaders, but our business leaders are appointed from on high. Despite its best efforts to the contrary, the government is still of, for, and by the people, and what power it has is granted by us. Buisness is of and by the workers, but for the bosses and the shareholders. They have the ability to hire, fire, promote, demote, and increase or decrease pay, all without democratic input from the people who actually make the goods and services that are ultimately sold.

I'm with David Schweickart when it comes to economics. A market is an efficient means of distributing goods and services, but business as it exists today is fundamentally wrong and serves to benefit the few to the detriment of the many. A company should be owned by the people who make it up: the workers. Managers should be elected by the workers, not appointed by those with even more absolute power. Profits from the company's success should be destributed equally among the workers, not hoarded by the bosses and paid out to already wealthy investors. In fact, investment should come from public banks funded by corporate capital taxation.

Economics of, for, and by the people.

A basic income guarantee and universal health care wouldn't hurt, either.

7 comments:

  1. GREAT post. I remember this from before. Great thought!

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  2. Hey, cool site. I was just bored and looking at blogs of people who have read Nature Via Nurture, one of my favourite books.

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  3. The basic income acronym guarantee's acronym is, "BIG"? That's hilarious, just taunting the anti-"big government" libertarian-type naysayers.

    But I'm not too sure about the viability of the concept though (although universal health care coverage is a no-brainer).

    How do you check inflation when everyone has a guaranteed income? Why should profits be distributed equally when effort/risk/production is not equal? How do you keep businesses competitive and responsive when all decisions must be made democratically?

    One of the aspects I found interesting in George Orwell's memoir of fighting with the left in the Spanish Civil War (Homage to Catalonia) was his own commitment to leftist principles while noting what did and did not work practically. One thing that did not work was successfully operating an army of anarchists, wherein every little decision is debated and questioned. Running a business would definately be similar.

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  6. Help me Dude, I'm lost.

    I was searching for Elvis and somehow ended up in your blog, but you know I'm sure I saw Elvis in the supermarket yesterday.

    No honest really, he was right there in front of me, next to the steaks singing "Love me Tender".

    He said to me (his lip was only slightly curled) "Boy, you need to get yourself a shiny, new plasmatv to go with that blue suede sofa of yours.

    But Elvis said I, In the Ghetto nobody has a plasma tv .

    Dude I'm All Shook Up said Elvis. I think I'll have me another cheeseburger then I'm gonna go home and ask Michael Jackson to come round and watch that waaaay cool surfing scene in Apocalypse Now on my new plasma tv .

    And then he just walked out of the supermarket singing. . .

    "You give me love and consolation,
    You give me strength to carry on "

    Strange day or what? :-)

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