How un(American)

As I prowl the internet I come across a great many sites that argue over the fact that we do not have more presidential candidates participating in the debates. That it’s “unAmerican” that Ron Paul, or Gary Johnson, or whomever is running on a specific ticket is not allowed to debate with capitalist choice A or capitalist choice B (psst…that’s Obama and Romney) on live television in front of the rest of our country.

I hate to break it to those red, white, and true blue believers, but that isn’t just an American value, that’s a democratic one that isn’t specific our country. We didn’t invent democracy, though many on either side of the political spectrum still considers it an invention of our revolution and subsequent union. But even that kind of democracy – and the one we struggle with today – is a limited one.

We seem to be in the stranglehold of the fist of capital, or wealth, or debt – whichever one you choose really because these days they are all the same in the eyes of the working class. Our capital has been shifted upwards through crony capitalism and corporate socialism. Our wealth (social, emotional, physical) has in most cases been depleted through the longer hours we work for the smaller piece of the pie. And our debt is the only thing handed back down to us as a means to survive while banks make sure we’re locked in to feed them like the good hosts for parasites we’ve become.

It’s nothing new in the eyes of Generation X, Y, or Z. All the lines on the graph of life have been skewing downward for the past 20-30 years no matter where the plot started. That is except for the ruling class who have begun to take notice of the people becoming a bit…upset.

More people have started waking up and realizing that the promise of being affluent like everyone else was a farce. There is no American dream because as George Carlin once said “you have to be asleep to believe it.” But we aren’t totally screwed because we’re only as powerful as we are conscious and active in our political, social, and economic surroundings. And these days there isn’t any shortage of that.

Sure, vote for your favorite candidate come election day, but also take notice of what’s happening around you after you leave the booth. Take notice and be inspired by the teacher strikes in Chicago (they weren’t just striking for more pay), or the recent Walmart ones (they are striking for more pay because their current wage is a joke). Follow economists like Dean Baker, Richard Wolff, and Steve Keen. They all have great ideas and solutions to help get us out of this hole. And above all else, get involved locally. The only way we can have our democracy back is not by waiting for some man or woman to appear on television to speak to us, we need to speak to each other.

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Opening Scene

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I found this little morsel after typing in “heterodox economics” in a Google image search so I figured it would make for a good welcome message from yours truly. However, I will admit with all due respect and sincerity that I did not choose to become an economist for the $$$$$$$$$$$. I wanted to become an economist to study $$$$$$$$$$$$ and the whys, whats, and hows behind those green slips of paper and to use that knowledge to help and take part in the radical and leftist school of thought in my country of birth. The U.S. hasn’t been too terribly kind to the left over the years but with the financial collapse of 2008 people from all walks of life are interested in hearing some new ideas on how we can put wealth back into the people’s hands.

When I say people I mean you and me. Not the big businesses that live on government welfare. And not the crony government types that love to tax and give our money to those big businesses. I want to see businesses succeed, but not at the cost of other people’s failure and repression. This is the main reason why I am very critical of the capitalism we experience in today’s society. I’m not sure to what extent it can be abolished or even reshaped, but that’s why I am here. I want to find out.

We need a new society with a new economic system. One that works for everyone and not ruled by an elite few. When Occupy started in 2011 it was a step in the right direction to bring to light problems that had be festering in our institutions that became the new normal of American capitalism. Occupy also did something else; It gave me a new outlook on life and inspired me to go back to school to study economics and help fight against the people who caused not only the financial crisis but all the other crises connected to our joke of an economic system.

During my studies I will be posting personal thoughts, ideas, and links to other people’s posts I find that can help everyone learn more about the alternatives to America’s capitalism to form a new economy. I will do my best to keep up with it during my busy schedule that includes working full-time, going to school full-time, and helping to raise two daughters. It is for them and for you that I am doing this.

 

Welcome to radical rationale.