Friday, July 6, 2018

The Plutocracy Will Be In Trouble When The Next Economic Crash Comes

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The global economy is being held up with gargantuan accounting fraud and endlessly growing debt. The stock market is in a bigger bubble than it was before the crash of 1929, with the market’s declines so far this year being just a hint of what will come next. This debt is tied in with the housing bubble that’s emerged in the last decade, whose size is also unprecedented. As wages continue to fall for workers around the world, credit card debt has become bigger than ever, with the bottom half of Americans now owning close to zero money on average because of the vast debt they’ve created to maintain their livelihoods.

Instead of giving the population an economic recovery and eliminating the power of the banks, the government has imposed austerity while letting the banks become even more consolidated and dangerous. We can guess what happens next.
When the next crash comes, the working class will be pummeled worse than it did in the last recession. This was guaranteed when President Trump recently signed in a partial repeal of Dodd-Frank, a law that itself didn’t even break up the largest financial institutions. No one knows just how bad this crash will will be, but the investor Jim Rogers predicts that “It’s going to be the worst in your lifetime.” And when it comes, we have to be ready.
Our best defense against what’s coming is to build alternative institutions that go against corporate power. As Chris Hedges wrote at the start of 2017, when he was advocating for this approach: “It will not be easy. It will take time. We must not accept foundation money and grants from established institutions that seek to curtail the radical process of reconstituting society. Trusting in the system, and especially the Democratic Party, to carry out reform and wrest back our democracy ensures our enslavement.”
Since then, the Democratic Socialists of America, which I highly recommend joining, has started to fulfill this role as an organization outside the established power system. With 45,000 members, the DSA is important not just as an activism resource, but as one form of relief for the population; it’s been having its volunteers give out free brake light repairs, an act of service to the poor that’s paralleled in the charities that socialist organizations have provided throughout their history. If the DSA and organizations like it keep growing, we’ll be better equipped to fight the political battle that this next economic crisis will create.
When the crisis emerges, we’ll need to organize against the further takeovers that the corporations will try to make. Even more austerity measures will no doubt be attempted, along with another bank bailout. Now that the social movements have gotten stronger than they were a decade ago, we’ll be able to counter these policies much better than we were able to during the last recession.
And when we show that kind of influence, our movements could be empowered to dismantle the other plutocratic policies that have been eroding democracy for the last forty years. None of this will be easy, and the state is already preparing for a future uprising by militarizing police and expanding censorship. But if we dedicate ourselves to organizing and building the organizations for a populist revolt, the coming disaster will become an opportunity to bring down the corporatocracy.

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