After reading and viewing and talking to to the participants in the OWS movement it has become clear that nearly all understand the current situation and how we got to this point. That the system has become so unfair and so non-responsive to the people’s needs that the only thing they can do is to take to the streets to express their anger and disenchantment.
What I don’t hear much of and read much of is the use of the the terms socialism and communism or even anarchy in any of these discussions. Nor do I hear any demands for a mere change to the status quot. What I do hear is a lot of discussion of some very realistic an pragmatic solutions to and modifications of the the current political and economic system. How to implement a system that is fair and equitable and truly representative of the citizens. Some that has been implemented from the start. Such as the participatory democracy of the General Assembly.
A system that goes back years and was used by the Quakers and Iroquois AKA Six Nations. Where everyone has an equal say in the decision making regardless of the race, gender, religion or economic status.
Our current representative democracy and nearly all before – including parliamentary systems – degenerate into oligarchies and even dictatorships. They are far to easy to be manipulated and abused by those in power and those who wish to be in power. This is also true of most business models that are based on this as well. We see this here with the Gerrymandering that is done to keep one group or another in power and to deny any say to certain groups.
But a true participatory democracy requires a good deal of work and involvement on the part of the citizens and – to me at any rate – would require some work to get to function well on a large scale. But our current technology now would allow this to be done since we have personal communications on a scale that hither to was not known.
There has also been a great deal of discussion on what to do about our current economic system. What should it be replace by or modified into. Like to use of worker owned and managed cooperatives. Where the means of production and the decisions are made by those who do the work. And the fruits of their labors are shared by all. Not channeled to a few at the top.
The use of trade among people goes back to the use of language. And one of the first ways of keeping track of it was the use of tally sticks. A primitive debt/credit memory system. It has also been suggested that trade also served a social purpose where those wishing to trade would get together to socialize as well.
The use of commodity money came with the emergence to the maritime trade. The use of precious metals became more prevalent though since their value is fixed and were more easily transported. But the amount of precious metal in the coinage was often manipulated by the rulers to change the value of it to benefit those in power. it was also used primarily to levy taxes on the populace. Fiat or paper money came more widely used after the the movable type printing press was invented. But also did counterfeiting of same.
With the beginnings of the industrial revolution and perhaps even before came the emergence of the corporation and unfortunately these corporations were nearly always run like small dictatorships with those doing the work having no say as to how they were payed or their working conditions. This gave rise to workers unions. It also gave rise to constant fight between the unions and the so called management. The dictators and their underlings.
And now nearly all transactions are done electronically using computers and networks. Money – as such – is merely a convenience for the masses and that’s all. It’s value these days is what ever those in power says it is. So a new way of engaging in trade is necessary and now we have the technology to explore this. And manufacturing and agriculture and health care are all requiring fewer and fewer people do to our increasing technology. Yet more and more people need to have the necessities to live and explore and expand their horizons. We have the ability to take care of these people but our current system has no provisions for this.
But it too will not be easy as those in power and those who have the wealth will fight to keep it. And this has always been the case and is the primary – yea the only – reason for a military. To keep those in power, in power. And to increase their power if possible.
The military has never existed to protect the population at large. Just look at the history of the various conflicts through the ages. The towns folk were rarely at risk but those in power were very much at risk.
And this too needs to be at the vary least diminished or eliminated all together.
These are the kinds of things that the OWS wall street movement is thinking about and discussing. And this is what is so upsetting to those in power.