On March 15, 2017, Chris Hedges speaks on TruthDog:
In a recent speech titled “After Trump and Pussy Hats” delivered in Vancouver, British Columbia, Truthdig columnist Chris Hedges tells the audience that “resistance must also be accompanied by an alternative vision of a socialist, anti-capitalist society.”
After a fierce indictment of what he calls the kleptocracy that rules the United States, Hedges urges organizing “with lightning speed” because this is our “last chance” to do so.
“This resistance must also be accompanied by an alternative vision of a socialist, anti-capitalist society. Because the enemy in the end is not Trump or Bannon—it is corporate power,” Hedges says. “And if we do not stop corporate power, we will never dismantle fascism’s seduction of the white working class and unemployed.”
“Hope comes from the numerous protests that have been mounted in the streets, in town halls,” he continues. “We must engage in these battles on a local and on a national level … we will have to build new radical movements and most importantly, new parallel institutions that challenge the hegemony of corporate power. It will not be easy; it will take time.”
Watch the entire rousing speech below.
— Posted by Natasha Hakimi Zapata
The problem is not the organizational entity, a corporation, which enables an assemblage of individuals to own shared interests in corporations that produces goods, products or services, but the CONCENTRATED OWNERSHIP nature of corporate organization that has been allowed to occur. The concentrated ownership of corporate entities does not have to be our reality. We can reform the system so that EVERY citizen, as an individual, can acquire ownership participation in the future capital asset growth of America’s major corporations, thus diffusing their ownership by the 1 percent and fewer to the 99 percent, wherein EVERY citizens is an owner in a diversified network of corporations producing wealth and income for the owners.
“Empire” means to have power, that is, control over others, and control over property is the surest way to control people. “Power,” as Daniel Webster noted, “naturally and necessarily follows property.”
The greatest crisis facing our country today is the obscene level of wealth and income economic inequality we now see, which has come about due to concentrated ownership of the productive assets employed in the production of products and services in our economy. This is a moral issue, an economic issue, and a political issue.
Binary economist Louis Kelso wrote extensively about the economic inequality caused by concentrated capital ownership. As well our Founding Fathers envisioned an America in which productive capital ownership would be widely held and never concentrated.
Binary economics and economic democracy, or what could be termed economic personalism, is founded on the principal that economic power has to be universally distributed amongst individual citizens and never allowed to concentrate. It is a value system based on the importance and dignity of every human person. The “pursuit of happiness” phrase in the Declaration of Independence was interchangeable in those times with the word “property.” The original phrasing was “the right to life, liberty and property.” “The pursuit of happiness” phrase was a substitute for the “property” phrase. In the forerunner of the Declaration of Independence and Bill of Rights, the 1776 Virginia Declaration of Rights declared that securing “Life, Liberty, with the means of acquiring and possessing Property” is the highest purpose for which any just government is formed. Democratizing economic power will return us to the pristine innocence and economic power diffusion we had in a pre-industrial society where labor was the principal factor in the creation of wealth.
Every person should have the equal opportunity and access to the means to be productive, for that is the most effective way of securing the natural rights of life and liberty. Since labor, land, and technology are all productive, every individual has the natural right to be an owner of labor, land, and technology.
This, in turn, requires that every individual have the equal opportunity and means to own whichever one or all of the factor(s) of production can produce most efficiently and effectively, both with respect to one’s self and in conformity with the demands of the common good.
On the other hand, in socialism rights are no longer believed to be inherent in each human person by nature. Instead, the theory is that rights are vested in humanity in general, and delegated to actual people as deemed necessary or expedient by those in power.
In socialism, no individual has a right to life, liberty, or private property, except as permitted by the collective, whatever form it takes, and whatever it is called. Ultimately, the State owns everything and everybody.
As Lord Acton noted, power tends to corrupt, and absolute power tends to corrupt absolutely.