Check out the latest content from Democracy at Work!
On this week's show, Prof Wolff talks about the social effects of inflation and the lack of accountability on the part of employers. Capitalist employers set prices with the only motive of maximizing. Employees, the vast majority, must live with inflation but are excluded from decisions setting prices. Employers scream “labor shortage” to get the government to force workers back to work at low wages. Employers recover from economic crashes but undercut workers’ efforts to do the same. How capitalism works.
Wolff: “What kind of a society gets through a cataclysmic crisis, with somewhere between half and one million dead fellow citizens, responds by squeezing the mass of the working class to force them back to work?"
In this episode of CHH, Dr. Fraad talks about the revolutionary class transformation experienced in the household from feudalism to other class forms, like the independent household and the communist, or communal household. She argues that many current political struggles such as struggles over abortion rights, birth control, and LGBTQ rights are in large part struggles over the conditions of existence for household feudalism and other household class formations.
Fraad: "These are feudal remnants of men trying to assert feudal ascendancy in a changed gender landscape in which women are demanding: the absence of sexual assault, sexual equality, control over our own bodies rather than leaving that up to the male, control in the family, job equality. All of those things can be seen as part of struggles against a feudal destiny based on gender...That is a contested terrain in the United States, contested through all of the birth control constraints, the abortion constraints, the sexual behavior contests, and also through gay and transgender rights."
In this episode of the All Things Co-op Podcast, Larry leads an interview with Ed Whitfield of Seed Commons to talk about cooperative and democratic investment in worker cooperatives.
Whitfield: "We're trying to build a new world that is predicated on helping people realize their full potential as humans. That world needs to be collective, respecting the fact that the production in the world is collective and social, and the surplus that comes out of that needs to be collectively administered so that it, again, can benefit the vast majority of people who are indeed the producers of that wealth."
A patron of Economic Update asks: "Here's a question coming from Switzerland: Very often, when you raise the question about raising rich people's taxes, people will tell you that you can't do that, otherwise these rich people will just go live in another country, where they will pay less taxes. So by raising taxes on the rich you would actually lose money, from a local perspective. What data do we have about that phenomenon and what can we propose to prevent that?" This is Professor Richard Wolff's video response.
Wolff: “The bottom line here is not to accept the political nonsense that makes it a kind of simple matter for the wealthy to escape their fair share of taxes… There are plenty of ways and plenty of historical experience with [preventing tax/wealth evasion] and having it work really quite well.”
Learn more about Prof Wolff's latest book, The Sickness is the System: When Capitalism Fails to Save Us from Pandemics or Itself.
Now also available as an eBook!