Naomi Klein agrees with me, represent the 99%

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Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

I didn't say that no wealthy person had ever achieved anything.  And I buy lottery tickets myself sometimes.

But do you disagree with the assertion that wealth should not get a person special deference and should not place the interests of wealthy peope ABOVE the interests, the needs, and the basic right to be treated with dignity and respect of the global economic/ethnic/racial majority?

I hadn't tried to build an electric car(I was too busy working day jobs, such as the twelve-hours a day seven days a week runs I just retired from putting in on the Alaska state ferry system.  It's perfectly possible to validate the achievements of an Elon Musk or a Bill Gates or an Oprah Winfrey or anyone else you could name without treating them as if they are gods who walk the Earth and the rest of humanity is nothing. 

Mr. Musk put an effort into creating his electric car...but the engnineers who perfected the designs, the workers who built the cars and the consumers who chose to purchase it mattered just as much as whatever Mr. Musk himself put into it.  He built the thing...but that doesn't mean he's entitled to hegemony over those who didn't.  And I don't know that he even wants hegemony.

And all of those people would have done everything they did WITHOUT any of the 1933-1981 social democratic consensus on economics and social welfare being rolled back.  It's not as though Mr. Musk ONLY did what he did because unions were weakened, corporate regulations slashed, job security was made a thing of the past and trade deals were passed that give the wealthy the right to overrule the decisions of democratic governments.

Btw, let me take this moment to thank you for actually engaging the discussion here.  That will always make for a better thread.

alan smithee alan smithee's picture

Tax the top 10% at 90% rate. They'd still be obscenely rich.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
But do you disagree with the assertion that wealth should not get a person special deference

I do.  But I don't believe I'm "deferring to" the wealthy.

Quote:
 It's perfectly possible to validate the achievements of an Elon Musk or a Bill Gates or an Oprah Winfrey or anyone else you could name without treating them as if they are gods who walk the Earth and the rest of humanity is nothing.

Agreed.  I don't believe I'm treating any of them as Gods.

Quote:
Mr. Musk put an effort into creating his electric car...but the engnineers who perfected the designs, the workers who built the cars and the consumers who chose to purchase it mattered just as much as whatever Mr. Musk himself put into it.  He built the thing...but that doesn't mean he's entitled to hegemony over those who didn't.  And I don't know that he even wants hegemony.

OK.  I'm just questioning why we should blame him for everything and take his money.  Really, I'm not so much arguing with you as I am with Pondering's facile plan to rob the rich and give the money to the poor.  And that's NOT an argument against progessive taxation -- just an argument against "easy" solutions.

 

lagatta

This has very little bearing on what I think in social, economic or environmental terms. But I remain mightily pissed off at her personal insults. I've attacked her on policy. Not called her whatever classist crap reactionaries could come up with (note: I have ZERO info about her personal economic status and would never seek it out). I've never been wealthy or privileged in my entire life.  Yes, of course almost all people in Montréal except perhaps street people (because of our murderous climate) are privileged with respect to our sisters and brothers in Port-au-Prince. And even itinerants have better access to clean water and a bit of crappy food up here if they can seek shelter. We all know that.

She goes on with all this "antineoliberal" crap and continues to vote for the Liberal Party. The Economist has praised Justin as a sane "liberal" in their sense.

What the fuck has that crap have to do with a progressive forum except attacking progressives?

quizzical

lagatta, you're at where many of us have been for months now......

and i don't know what it has to do with this forum....

mark_alfred

Quote:

What the fuck has that crap have to do with a progressive forum except attacking progressives?

It has nothing to do with a progressive forum.  And it is just an attempt at flame baiting.

lagatta

Oh, I have been all along. And certainly participating in the far more productive cookery thread. I'm just particularly pissed off about being baited for no reason. Indeed I think that is the only reason she posts. I just hope she is not among the many people I've helped in getting access to social housing, but on the other hand, does it really matter? Lower-income people have every bit as much a right to be reactionary boobs as Trump and his ilk. And what do we know on the Internet anyway? She could live in Senneville and think it is fun to torment far-from-privileged leftists.

On far more important intel, Livia has returned after a couple of hours out in the alley after dark. I was getting a bit worried, though this is a "green lane" which has much more foliage and an extremely low speed limit, to protect children and cats. I guess the right not to be run over is petit-bourgeois.

quizzical

lagatta wrote:
I guess the right not to be run over is petit-bourgeois.

this is extremely witty.....lololol

Livia is just her time outside before the snow falls.

mark_alfred

I assume Livia is your cat, as opposed to the wife of Augustus.  Anyway, I'm glad she returned safe and sound.

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Quote:
But do you disagree with the assertion that wealth should not get a person special deference

I do.  But I don't believe I'm "deferring to" the wealthy.

Quote:
 It's perfectly possible to validate the achievements of an Elon Musk or a Bill Gates or an Oprah Winfrey or anyone else you could name without treating them as if they are gods who walk the Earth and the rest of humanity is nothing.

Agreed.  I don't believe I'm treating any of them as Gods.

Quote:
Mr. Musk put an effort into creating his electric car...but the engnineers who perfected the designs, the workers who built the cars and the consumers who chose to purchase it mattered just as much as whatever Mr. Musk himself put into it.  He built the thing...but that doesn't mean he's entitled to hegemony over those who didn't.  And I don't know that he even wants hegemony.

OK.  I'm just questioning why we should blame him for everything and take his money.  Really, I'm not so much arguing with you as I am with Pondering's facile plan to rob the rich and give the money to the poor.  And that's NOT an argument against progessive taxation -- just an argument against "easy" solutions.

 

I didn't say we should blame Mr. Musk as an individual for everything and it's probably not possible to take ALL his money even if that was what I was advocating.  It's not about blaming wealthy individuals, or about wealthy individuals being personally villainous.  It's about saying their interests shouldn't matter more than the interests of the majority and that people in Musk's class should not be setting the limits for what degree of social justice(by which I mean a society as free as possible from want, not "social justice" in the current American establishment sense of "just barely protecting people from the most blatant forms of discrimination and NOTHING LIKE ACTUAL HUMAN EQUALITY".  We should not be allowing those on top to set strict constraints on what the governments can and cannot do on our behalf and on our right to have our own real say on the issues which affect us.

 

lagatta

Yes. Livia is my current feline companion, not the wife of Augustus or the historian Livy (Titus Livius).

She woke with a start; there is extremely bright moonlight; I've read that the Moon is unusually close to the Earth this month. I'm drinking a glass of water and looking at a couple of e-mails from Europe, but going back to bed. The sky has not yet fallen...

swallow

It's a "supermoon," apparently. The cloest the moon has been to the earth in decades, coupled with a full moon. Sat with my son and watched it last night, just quietly, meditatively, before his bedtime. 

In less "modern" times they'd have called that moon a portent. Of what, I'm not sure. Perhaps it is. 

lagatta

It certainly got Livia (the cat) agitated. She didn't bay at it like a hound (wonder if neighbourhood dogs did?) but she certainly stared at it and mewed out at me. I live on the top storey of a typical Montréal triplex, and with the trees almost bare now, we had a clear, almost stark, view out the windows of my home office.

quizzical

swallow wrote:
In less "modern" times they'd have called that moon a portent. Of what, I'm not sure. Perhaps it is. 

Gandhi was murdered 3 days after the last one.

and within months there were colonial up risings around the world and Israel signed itself into being.

lagatta

That was a long time ago, in 1948...

Because of the time of year (latish autumn) the moonrise will be in late afternoon: https://www.timeanddate.com/moon/canada/montreal 17:02 here, but of course this varies not only depending on your timezone but also where your location lies within the zone.  Fortunately the weather is very mild here for the time of year, so I can go out on my balcony and get a good look.

quizzical

it's been raining here in BC for days so got a brief glimpse middle of the night last night but tonight might be clear enough to see it.

Pondering

lagatta wrote:
I've never been wealthy or privileged in my entire life.  

I wasn't baiting. I'm shocked that you found it insulting to have it pointed out that in relation to some people you are privileged. How can you feel so insulted yet not relate to other people feeling insulted at being told they are privileged? Privilege is always relative. You describe that as being "classist crap reactionary". I don't even know what that is.

lagatta wrote:
(note: I have ZERO info about her personal economic status and would never seek it out) 

You shared your personal economic status and I told you I share it right down to it improving when I turn 65 therefore I consider myself in the same category of privilege as yourself. Apparently I just deeply insulted myself.

lagatta wrote:
What the fuck has that crap have to do with a progressive forum except attacking progressives?

Criticism is not the same thing as attack. NDP is barely on the left and their support has tanked.

lagatta wrote:
She goes on with all this "antineoliberal" crap and continues to vote for the Liberal Party.

What would we be dealing with under the NDP and their balanced budget promise? Do you seriously think life would be better for the needy? A 2% corporate tax increase would have been a drop in the bucket towards their promises. Now with Trump talking about slashing corporate taxes he couldn't have followed through on the increase. Where would the money have come from to help indigenous communities? How would the NDP have paid for daycare spaces? Having promised balanced budgets for all four years Mulcair did not have the credibility to turn around and do the kind of deficit spending the Liberals are. The NDP would not have wanted a repeat of Bob Rae and Ontario on the federal stage. Mulcair promised only decriminalization for possession of marijuana. That position was taken by subverting party democracy by preventing a vote coming forward at the convention.

You want me to take it as an article of faith that a Mulcair government would have benefited Canadians more than a Trudeau government.

NDP support is not up. It's down. I arrived supporting Trudeau which immediated condemned me to nonstop insults. You see me and my ilk as the enemy. I'm not. My life is no more privileged than Lagatta's. I want the living standards of everyone in Canada to meet or exceed the poverty line. I believe that indigenous peoples have a special claim and need based on historic discrimination which led to entire communities experiencing PTSD. I want to transition to a green economy. I want to stop pipelines. I want genuine equality for women. I want everyone to have access to education and mental health care. I am against all forms of discrimination. I favor using trade deals to assert corporate responsibilities and worker rights.

To me voting NDP would mean getting another Liberal party only less effective and they would have no reason to move left. Now the left of the party, the kind of people who support the Leap Manifesto, have an opportunity to wrest control away from the current executive that will not attack the trade deals or Bay street the way Sanders and Corbyn do. It is a sad day in North America when we have to look to the likes of Trump to stop a trade deal like TPP.

Pondering

lagatta wrote:

Oh, I have been all along. And certainly participating in the far more productive cookery thread. I'm just particularly pissed off about being baited for no reason. Indeed I think that is the only reason she posts. I just hope she is not among the many people I've helped in getting access to social housing, but on the other hand, does it really matter? Lower-income people have every bit as much a right to be reactionary boobs as Trump and his ilk. And what do we know on the Internet anyway? She could live in Senneville and think it is fun to torment far-from-privileged leftists.

No need to fear. You definitely did not help me to access social-housing but what a particularly smug and judgemental thing to say. Exactly what repels the people you claim to represent. Then you compare me to Trump as if there is any similarity between us.That is exactly the attitude that marginalizes activists and sends people into the arms of the right and far right.

Meanwhile you are still failing to reach me and my ilk. Soon you will be bemoaning the Conservative win in Ontario because I doubt Trudeau can save Wynne and the NDP's support is right down there with her. Then Trudeau will probably win another majority under FPTP or whatever we have at that point despite everyone pointing out that he didn't keep all his campaign promises and that he's a liar. Posters will be complaining, saying there is no difference between the Liberals and the Conservatives, and that we need PR, and bemoaning the stupidity of everyone who won't listen to you and agree.

swallow

You are literally the only person making this about the NDP, Pondering. 

Pondering

Mr. Magoo wrote:
OK.  I'm just questioning why we should blame him for everything and take his money.  Really, I'm not so much arguing with you as I am with Pondering's facile plan to rob the rich and give the money to the poor.  And that's NOT an argument against progessive taxation -- just an argument against "easy" solutions.

I wasn't suggesting we mob mansions. Wealthy people rigged the system to benefit themselves. Wealthy people have convinced the middle class and the working class that it is poor people that are impoverishing the middle class and crippling government.

For the people who saw security and status as their birthright – and that means white men most of all – these losses are unbearable. Donald Trump speaks directly to that pain. The Brexit campaign spoke to that pain. So do all of the rising far-right parties in Europe. They answer it with nostalgic nationalism and anger at remote economic bureaucracies – whether Washington, the North American free trade agreement the World Trade Organisation or the EU. And of course, they answer it by bashing immigrants and people of colour, vilifying Muslims, and degrading women. Elite neoliberalism has nothing to offer that pain, because neoliberalism unleashed the Davos class. People such as Hillary and Bill Clinton are the toast of the Davos party. In truth, they threw the party. Trump’s message was: “All is hell.” Clinton answered: “All is well.” But it’s not well – far from it.

The left doesn't give them anyone to blame for their losses. The left says "we are going to take what you have and give it to people who are even worse off because you are privileged white men" or at least that is what people hear.

You want simplicity...

Message from the right - poor lazy people, drug addicts and refugees are taking too much money out of the system. You earn your money and deserve to keep it.

Message from the left - white people, especially white men, are privileged and need to pay a higher price and give up their ill-gotten gains.

This approach is not working. The very people that should be supporting the left are supporting the right.

The people who need to be swayed are not going to be shamed into paying attention to politics between elections or scolded into listening to academic arguments.

The right is tapping into broad discontent and directing it. The left is not.

Pondering

swallow wrote:

You are literally the only person making this about the NDP, Pondering. 

Lagatta referred to my voting Liberal with outrage. Posters have stated it's okay to support the NDP and left of but not the Liberals as though the NDP is some sort of social justice party instead of a centrist neoliberal party.

lagatta

By the way, the sun is already setting here, so soon we'll be able to view the largest supermoon in about 68 years. With the link I submitted upthread, you can access your own city, region or province/territory and check the time of moonrise.

mark_alfred

Post #2 makes odd references to the NDP that don't make much sense in the context of what Klein was arguing about regarding the American election.

mark_alfred

Quote:

By the way, the sun is already setting here, so soon we'll be able to view the largest supermoon in about 68 years. With the link I submitted upthread, you can access your own city, region or province/territory and check the time of moonrise.

Thanks!  I'll do that this evening.

lagatta

The Radio-Canada commute-time show is reporting that there are a lot of people up on the belvedere of Mont-Royal. By the way, this belvedere is named Belvedere Kondiaronk, after a Huron leader who was one of the prime movers behind the Great Peace here in 1701.

quizzical

pondering said:

Quote:
The right is tapping into broad discontent and directing it. The left is not.

they do so at their own peril imv.

why in the hell would you advocate we should be as sneaky and lying as Trump and Trudeau?

quizzical

we will be able to see it tonight too lagatta am excited.

my front windows open right onto the Rockies where the moon rises so it will be a mountain moon scene.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
Wealthy people have convinced the middle class and the working class that it is poor people that are impoverishing the middle class and crippling government.

Wealthy man:  "These aren't the droids you're looking for."

Reg'lar Canadians:  "Let's go.  These aren't the droids we're looking for."

lagatta

Quizzical, that is wonderful. I hope you post photos of such a scene. Our so-called mountain is a lovely lookout, but pales in comparison to real mountains.

quizzical

got the camera all set and ready.

i was trying to figure out if i was privileged too 'cause i got a view and affordable rent....

lagatta

Here there is a misty, almost frosty halo around the moon, though it isn't frosty cold. Livia of course wanted out - I do allow her out in the back garden, but call her back after not a long while, and never let her out late at night, or when I'm away. There are at least three other cats in the yard; two of them are the feline companions of our co-op members, and the other one is a neighbour. I believe they are all neutered.

She is sitting in the spiral staircase, and does seem to be looking at the moon - though perhaps she is simply staring into space, who knows?

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
Yes. Livia is my current feline companion

I hope she's cute and hilarious, and different.

When St. Ernest slipped the surly bonds of Earth, we knew we'd meet another cat, and it's been endless fun getting to know her -- she's different from Ernest in every way except those ways in which she's exactly the same.  Her name:  Olivia.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
 she has the bossiness of very small cats, to make up for her lack of size.

Like wee dogs, who bark so much more than the big ones! :)

Ernest, in his prime, was 21 pounds of lean, mean, fighting machine... except he'd never been in a fight in his life.  No other cat was willing to take the risk.  When we moved here and let him out, I never once saw any other cat come within a 3m radius of him, even though he was a total derp who would have done nothing more than sniff them.

Olivia, at less than half his size, totally delights in putting herself in harm's way in any manner that she can, and regularly finds herself in hissy, yowly scraps with the neighbourhood cats who all outsize her.  She loves to go mano a mano with them, come running back through the back door, then promptly run back out again, charging them at full tilt to push them back, and the cycle repeats.  Totally different cats.

Except when it comes to raccoons.  Both of them would throw down for a raccoon.  I know, right?  A wild mammal with hands like a monkey and teeth like a wild dog.  sigh.

[IMG]http://i65.tinypic.com/20z69hg.jpg[/IMG]

lagatta

One of my downstairs neighbours, who is a close friend, also inherited a cat named Olive (pronounced in French, thus very similar to Olivia). She is also black, sleek and pretty, but quite a bit larger than my pocket-sized version. And not nearly as amenable. Livia sleeps in the same chair as Renzo, but they are of course very different in many ways. He was more laid-back; she has the bossiness of very small cats, to make up for her lack of size.

quizzical

got about 100 pics will go through them and put up the best somewhere at some point

my parents have a little black bossy she cat too. she totally intimidates their 25lb spoiled wrotten gray tuxedo. to be fair she is 1/2 feral well maybe 2/3rds nowadays they've tamed and spoiled her nicely.

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