Friday, February 28, 2014

"Workers As Citizens" is not Confiscatory

There is no transfer of property rights under "Workers as Citizens." Workers receive the rights that citizens in a democracy nominally receive. They do enjoy far greater control over the organization's decision than previously, which includes the distribution of the earnings. But this is what we're all calling for anyway and would happen even under far more modest reforms such as more pro-unionization legislation and enforcement. Even fairer taxation would produce the effect of a "confiscation" of wealth.

And, again I ask: What else is there? There is a reason that we can't simply return to the "golden age" of Keynesian capitalism. This has to do with power relations within our political economy. We can't expect capitalism to obey pro-environmental legislation simply because a "green" political party has won the right to govern. Those are the only two options that I hear mainstream political activists talking about. The other one, that of the "radicals" appears to call for Quixotic cries of "To the barricades!" which, even if they were not sadly ludicrous, are not realistic because people aren't eager for the violent upheaval and the civil war that will emerge out of the power-vacuum that violent overthrow of the state would entail.

It is money/capitalism that corrupts our democracy, devastates our planet and spurs on present-day imperialism. It is only by getting the people to control their economic lives that we will bring this to an end. Putting everything into a small group of hands through some process of nationalization or centralization won't work. Only democratic decision-making at the enterprise level is realistic. The easiest way, by far, to achieve this is through the political-legal path.

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