Saturday, September 19, 2015

Saving capitalism for the many, not the few

Robert Reich's new book is due out shortly. It seems to be about reforming capitalism to be consistent with democracy. It might be a step in the right direction toward the developing  neo-Commons but it's still capitalism. But it's only a right step in that we're actually going back to a time when capitalism wasn't as corrupt and greedy, when it was held in check from those things by democracy and there was a more equitable distribution of wealth.

Still, we need that sort of capitalism as a springboard toward a true democratic economy, and that is indeed the neo-Commons when capitalism has run its course. And no, the neo-Commons is not the sort of socialism we've seen to date out of Russia and Cuba, but more out of the socialist democracies of Scandanavia and Bernie Sanders. That is the sort of democratic socialism/capitalism hybrid that is the forerunner of a true neo-Commons. From the Amazon blurb:

"Reich exposes the falsehoods that have been bolstered by the corruption of our democracy by huge corporations and the revolving door between Washington and Wall Street: that all workers are paid what they’re 'worth,' that a higher minimum wage equals fewer jobs, and that corporations must serve shareholders before employees. He shows that the critical choices ahead are not about the size of government but about who government is for: that we must choose not between a free market and 'big' government but between a market organized for broadly based prosperity and one designed to deliver the most gains to the top. Ever the pragmatist, ever the optimist, Reich sees hope for reversing our slide toward inequality and diminished opportunity when we shore up the countervailing power of everyone else."

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