Class/Economics

Cover of "The Revolution Will Not Be Fund...

Cover via Amazon

[T]he [Non-Profit Industrial Complex] contributes to a mode of organizing that is ultimately unsustainable.  To radically change society, we must build mass movements that can topple systems of domination, such as capitalism.  However, the NPIC encourages us to think of social justice organizing as a career; that is, you do the work if you can get paid for it.  However, a mass movement requires the involvement of millions of people, most of whom cannot get paid.  By trying to do grassroots organizing through this careerist model, we are essentially asking a few people to work more than full-time to make up for the work that needs to be done by millions.

Andrea Smith, “Introduction” in The Revolution Will Not Be Funded: Beyond the Non-Profit Industrial Complex

It seems that in all known gift economies, even the laziest of people were never refused food–in stark contrast to capitalism–but feeding a few loafers is an insignificant drain on a society’s resources, especially when compared to pampering the voracious social elite of our society.  And losing this tiny amount of resources is far preferable to losing our compassion and letting people starve to death.  In more extreme cases, if members of such a society were more aggressively parasitic, attempting to monopolize resources or force other people to work for them–in other words, acting like capitalists–they could be ostracized and even expelled from the society.

Peter Gelderloos, Anarchy Works

You may call me an anarchist, a socialist or a communist, I care not, but I hold to the theory that if one man has not enough to eat three times a day and another man has $25,000,000, that last man has something that belongs to the first.

Mary Elizabeth Lease (19th Century Activist)

The closest most folks can come to talking about class in this nation is to talk about money.  For so long everyone has wanted to hold on to the belief that the United States is a class-free society–that anyone who works hard enough can make it to the top.  Few people stop to think that in a class-free society there would be no top. (5)

This is the generation of the young who worship at the throne of the assassins who mock, ridicule, and destroy every value or ethical belief that challenges the rule of the dollar.  This generation has blood on its hands and does not care as long as the blood can be washed away by fancy soaps, aromatherapy, and a host of other little luxuries.  When the politics of greed rule, the young are particularly vulnerable.  Without a core identity, belief system, or place within a beloved community, they lack the resources to ward off the awesome allure that says unprecedented wealth awaits everyone, that we have only to imagine…They do not understand class politics or capitalism. In their minds, to be without money is to be without life. (87)

bell hooks, where we stand: class matters

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