Capitalism Hits the Fan
Like that well known substance, Capitalism has hit the fan. The statistics are numbing and do not convey the suffering and trauma citizens are enduring. Gone up in smoke are their savings, pensions, homes and jobs. Poverty is at record levels. For too many, dreams and hopes are shattered. And like the Howard Beale character in the movie Network, people are yelling, “I’m as mad as hell and I’m not going to take this anymore.” Occupy Wall Street has gone global. People are in the streets pushing back and saying, Enough. “We are the 99%.” There is widespread recognition that the economic crash is not just the result of greed and arrogance and lax regulation. There are deeper structural problems with a system that always prioritizes profits over people. The question is what should replace it?
Richard Wolff is Professor of Economics Emeritus at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst and currently a visiting professor at the New School in New York. The New York Times calls him “America’s most prominent Marxist economist.” He is the author of numerous books including Democracy at Work, Capitalism’s Crisis Deepens and Occupy the Economy with David Barsamian.
I am glad that your viewpoint on economics and the “system” are not prevailing opinions yet in this country. America has her issues, and some of those can be traced to capitalism devoid of Christian morality guiding the hearts of societies people…but replacing a flawed system with an even more flawed and morally bankrupt system is not the answer. What we need in this country, besides a revival of Christian principles, is less government intervention. What we have now is not true capitalism. What we have is interventionist policies burdening down a system from functioning properly, and implemented by elitist types such as Mr. Wolff who think they know best how to run others lives. I don’t want Mayer Bloomberg telling me what size soda to buy, nor do I want Academic types trying to manage the greatest economic engine in the world down to the last widget.
Let freedom ring!
eric tomas –
I have witnessed a lot of what he articulates in this presentation. Beginning with Nixon/Kissinger’s open up of China (~1970), the beginnings of off-shoring US production, wage stagnation, reduction to almost complete elimination of taxation of wealth, and the subsequent rise in the US deficit. And lately, corporations now enjoy the right of a citizen, and the rich can outright buy and election (heard of super packs???)
What I had missed and was completely blown away when he stated it, we, the middle, are paying the already wealthy (multinational banking concerns, worldly elites, it goes beyond the Chinese) the interest on the money they are loaning/financing our government to operate under this huge deficit. It’s a double win for the rich. It’s amazing. It’s insanity.
Wake up folks, you are loosing your future, your freedoms, your right to even question the Status quo. Congress is just a puppet show orchestrated by the rich. We are all too caught up in the Hollywood/NFL/Apple/just-wanna-have-fun-culture, instead of being engaged with our political system. It may already be too late, but if enough of you speak out, in your church groups, at work, with your neighbors, and get involved in your local political organizations, a whisper can become a scream. And until we scream, the downward spiral just continue.
bernard cerone –
This presentation demonstrates how our government has undermined the working classes living standards through its collusion with the corporate world. It should be shown on all PBS stations across America because non-public television is owned by the corporations. “Wake up American workers” is the message.
chris nickerson –
I listened to this on NPR and found it an engrossing speech. MR. Wolff does a very good job of explaining why our economy has been foundering for so long and even suggests a possible way to help ourselves out of our declining situation.