- Capitalism and Alternatives -


Posted by: Quincunx on October 28, 1999 at 01:04:55:

In Reply to: You're both wrong posted by MDG on October 27, 1999 at 18:15:33:

MDG: As an American, I resent both blockheaded nationalism ("USA #1" crapola), and the desire by folk from other countries that we "go to hell." The USA could be a great country, in the truest sense of the word, but we'll need both maturity from our own citizens, and encouragement from the rest of the world. Believe me, mate (speaking to Nas), you don't want the USA going to hell, not with the military hardware we have at our disposal.

Qx: Well said, but I still don't think that the USA will ever change until resources start to run out. I do feel that the US can easily turn on itself due to demographic changes and as Farinata has noted there could also appear a New Cold War. Frankly, I don't think American people as a whole can break out of Americanism. A Chomsky quote just might illuminate what I'm trying to point out.

"I remember a couple of years ago here, during the Eastern strike, when Frank Lorenzo was trying to break the union, he at one point lowered air fares to New York. The fares were ridiculously low. People were just flocking to Eastern, including radical kids. I remember talking to student activist groups about this and saying I didn't understand it. Granted, the pilots and stewardesses aren't Mexican farm workers, but still, [they're] working people and the
machinists' union is behind it. How can you guys cross the machinists' union's picket lines? The reaction I kept getting was, we're on the side of the working man and working woman, and we don't see any reason why they should be pushed around by these union bosses. If they want to go to work that's fine, the unions shouldn't be able to stop them from going to work.
"At this point you hardly know what to answer. You've got to begin from kindergarten and explain what it means to have a class struggle and to fight against oppression and to work together with others. That's been lost. And not by accident...."

--Noam Chomsky, _Chronicles of Dissent_, p. 324

What I think Chomsky is saying is that most Americans don't understand class struggle and the capitalist system that perpetuates it. The example of Americanism that is seen at the top of this thread is evidence enough of a long campaign to get working people to view the rich as their best buddies. So far it seems to have worked but for how much longer is another matter.

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