The masses standing by and doing nothing
Yeah, that's the ticket.
Well here's the show the ticket got us into. Here's Ian Welsh:
And so, today, large parts of the US are shitholes, which the residents hate so much they are consuming record amounts of drugs and committing suicide, because who the fuck wants to live in a nation with no hope, shitty bosses, and no hope.
Or this one:
If you want to know what it is like to pay income taxes like they do in Europe, then looking closely at your pay stub would be a good start. We don’t pay as many formal taxes as they do, but when you bring in payments we are compelled to pay and that are deducted straight out of our paychecks just like taxes are, it really does not look that much different, at least as far as labor taxes are concerned.
Ultimately, this is a long exercise in pointing out the obvious: American workers already pay more than enough money to provide good health care to everyone in the country. It’s just that they pay it into a private insurance system that wastes large portions of it on rents and administrative redundancy.
Yup, European taxes without European benefits. Because we feel damned privileged to live in a country of "f*ck you I've got mine" (read it out loud if you don't like the f*cking asterisks). It's cheaper, you know, to live in an Oakland, California homeless encampment than it is to actually work, if that's something you want to do, and since half of America lives one paycheck away from destitution, it's probably going to end up that way for the rest of us. Here's the map of encampments, and here's what they look like. The wording of the article is amusing: "Omigod they shut one down." Remember that that one they shut down is one dot on the map the anti-eviction advocates drew up, and it's going to be replaced by another dot, if not in Oakland then somewhere else. And it's not as if it's persuasive upon the Powers that Be in Oakland that they should put out some trash cans, and empty them with regularity.
Instead, Oakland, especially west Oakland, looks like a shithole so that other communities in America can expel their homeless or sic the cops on them. Oh yeah and if you're wondering if any of those dots on the map are going away, take a look at the listings on Zillow for Oakland. You don't need a Bachelor's degree in Math to understand that NONE of those folks living in the encampments are EVER going to live in actual homes in Oakland. Maybe the more privileged among them are going to end up in some community like Paradise, and there are plenty of those in California. But that's how it is when real estate in America is a Ponzi scheme.
The first task of American education should be to teach students, of whatever age they happen to be, how to distinguish good ideas from crap ones. One of the concepts I'll be promoting in my book is that of "bundled natures," gotten from Jason W. Moore. The idea behind "bundled natures" is that, instead of talking about "man" and "nature," we talk about "bundled natures," intertwinings of human and non-human nature. "Bundled natures" is a good idea. Pushing the homeless elsewhere is a bad idea.
Our current "bundled natures" are an intertwining between the toxic slums of the world and the toxic slums in the heads of those who make the decisions. We can do better.