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RIGHT TO STARVE (A CONVERSATION)

January 27, 2012

RIGHT TO STARVE (A CONVERSATION)

I had an email exchange with an old friend and classmate today. He is a retired professor. I advised him that the so-called right to starve bill was on the verge of becoming law in Indiana. Here is the gist of the interchange: He wrote: Your and my parents and grandparents knew the routine in the days before the AFL-CIO got a good foothold and began to change things. Unfortunately, this modernized feudalistic mind-set is so deeply ingrained among those who control the wealth that it’s practically impervious to change. Thus shall it always be? Striking? Rioting? Revolution? Abject obeisance?

I replied: Impervious? That’s what they thought in Czarist Russia and royal France. I still cling to the hope that such extreme measures as were then employed will be unnecessary and that present day oligarchs will see the light and share their good fortune with the masses so that the Plutonian revolution of the demos (aka democracy) can continue. The right to starve bill is designed, of course, to institutionalize taking from the poor and middle class via wages (since the corporate class has already hogged about all of the productivity gains they can out of a very tired America). Aside from the morality of the whole thing, has anyone thought of the reduction in aggregate demand that the bill guarantees? Since the one   and only way out of this recession is an INCREASE in aggregate demand, such a bill also runs counter to working our way out of this downturn in the economy. I am beginning to think that the moneyed class likes this recession; it’s a cover for all kinds of mischief. Corporate profits and retained earnings are at historic highs in corporate America and they are buying in (literally) with the Walkers, Daniels, Kasiches, Scotts, Snyders and various other flunkies to keep it that way. Why should they want a recovery? Hang labor out to dry and let the veterans under the bridge rot.  GRRRRR!  GERALD E

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