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[Xmca-l] Re: Our continuing concern about Trump



Andy,

Thanks for starting this thread, albeit non-Vygotsky-related.

If there's anything Marx-ish to be gleaned from current political
developments, it's that workers, white collar, blue collar and otherwise,
would do well to organize or join unions. This does not mean prioritizing
economic issues to the exclusion of other interests. It just means that
right now, there's an urgent need for workers---the 99% so to speak---to
organize and counterbalance the plutocracy taking shape.

Re Vox, I have not read the first piece.

But I have read the second piece and I'm highly critical of it. The broad
problem is that it is based on a faulty zero-sum rationale, namely that the
US Democratic Party somehow must sacrifice economic justice for social
justice or vice versa.

But on specifics: Beauchamp asks why the hard right is rising in states
with generous social safety nets, and then says "it’s a hard question to
answer if you believe people cast their ballots principally on the basis of
their perceived economic interests." HA! We all know from our experience in
the USA that if people DID vote "principally on the basis of their
perceived economic interests", the GOP wouldn't keep winning, everywhere.
And no mention whatsoever about the austerian attacks on the welfare state
over the past 5-10 years (In Europe: Cameron, Osborne, Sarkozy, Schäuble,
Trichet; in the States, the Koch donor network/GOP, IMF, Word Bank et al.).
Then, Beauchamp employs straw men, discussing UK, Holland and France but
ignoring the "strongest" welfare states which are located in Scandinavia.
Beauchamp also ignores the legacy of COLONIALISM and the rise of far-right
parties in France and Holland and the UK.

But the article is useful for pointing out the faultiness of thinking the
US Democratic Party must choose BETWEEN economic and social justice. It
does point out how the strategy or becoming, basically, Rockefeller
Republicans (social libertarians meets moderate "fiscal conservative") has
made the Democratic Party rudderless with no clear moral/political vision,
because party elites are too beholden to Wall Street. This mostly explains
the popularity of Bernie Sanders.

Andrew

On Thu, Mar 16, 2017 at 11:04 AM, Andy Blunden <ablunden@mira.net> wrote:

> I know that restraint is needed when thinking of introducing current
> political issues to this list but I suspect that we are all still worrying
> about this issue and trying to figure it out. I have recently read a couple
> of articles on vox.com by a fellow called Zack Beauchamp which really
> need to be read. I don't know anything about vox.com or Mr. Beauchamp and
> I suspect he has nothing to do with CHAT or Marxism, but it is well
> researched, challenging and rings true. See
>
> http://www.vox.com/2016/9/19/12933072/far-right-white-riot-trump-brexit
>
> and
>
> http://www.vox.com/world/2017/3/13/14698812/bernie-trump-cor
> byn-left-wing-populism
>
> Andy
> --
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> Andy Blunden
> http://home.mira.net/~andy
> http://www.brill.com/products/book/origins-collective-decision-making
>