Capitalism – Freedom Toons http://freedomtoons.org/ Mon, 27 Jun 2022 11:04:31 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.9.3 https://freedomtoons.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/05/default.png Capitalism – Freedom Toons http://freedomtoons.org/ 32 32 Reviews | “Venture capitalists will turn into vulture capitalists” and other predictions by Andrew Ross Sorkin https://freedomtoons.org/reviews-venture-capitalists-will-turn-into-vulture-capitalists-and-other-predictions-by-andrew-ross-sorkin/ Mon, 27 Jun 2022 09:00:06 +0000 https://freedomtoons.org/reviews-venture-capitalists-will-turn-into-vulture-capitalists-and-other-predictions-by-andrew-ross-sorkin/ Stocks are falling, inflation is skyrocketing and interest rates are rising – it’s clear that the US economy has been in turmoil. And yet, President Biden says a recession is “not inevitable”. Andrew Ross Sorkin, founder and editor of DealBook at The New York Times, sat down with Kara Swisher to unpack our economic troubles, […]]]>

Stocks are falling, inflation is skyrocketing and interest rates are rising – it’s clear that the US economy has been in turmoil. And yet, President Biden says a recession is “not inevitable”. Andrew Ross Sorkin, founder and editor of DealBook at The New York Times, sat down with Kara Swisher to unpack our economic troubles, predict what will happen next, and diagnose what Washington could have done differently.

[You can listen to this episode of “Sway” on Apple, Spotify, Amazon Music, Google or wherever you get your podcasts.]

In this conversation, they discuss how the pandemic highlighted our economic dependence on China and helped pave the way for both a crypto boom and the bear market that followed. They break down the future of business from Netflix and Disney to Coinbase and Twitter, and discuss whether activist employees will continue to wield power with their employers. And Andrew helps explain why plane tickets are so expensive.

(A full transcript of the episode will be available at noon on the Times website.)

Thoughts? Email us at sway@nytimes.com.

“Sway” is produced by Nayeema Raza, Blakeney Schick, Caitlin O’Keefe and Wyatt Orme, and edited by Nayeema Raza; fact-checking by Kate Sinclair, Michelle Harris and Mary Marge Locker; music and sound design by Isaac Jones; mixing by Carole Sabouraud and Sonia Herrero; audience strategy by Shannon Busta. Special thanks to Kristin Lin and Kristina Samulewski.

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Buddy capitalism https://freedomtoons.org/buddy-capitalism/ Sat, 25 Jun 2022 02:00:10 +0000 https://freedomtoons.org/buddy-capitalism/ From a one-room office on the first floor of a faded barrack-style tile-roofed building on the narrow southern bazaar street of Payyanur to a swanky three-story corporate-style office a few meters away, testifies of CPM’s transformation over the past four decades in this northern Kerala city, a place known until recently for its cultural richness […]]]>

From a one-room office on the first floor of a faded barrack-style tile-roofed building on the narrow southern bazaar street of Payyanur to a swanky three-story corporate-style office a few meters away, testifies of CPM’s transformation over the past four decades in this northern Kerala city, a place known until recently for its cultural richness and contribution to the freedom movement.

Payyanur has been in the headlines over the past week after a furious section within the local CPM leadership opened a Pandora’s box, forcing state leadership into firefighting mode. – they are still struggling to put out the fire lit by outgoing regional party secretary V Kunhikrishnan. When it comes to the CPM, Payyanur has always seen unity at the grassroots, but the ongoing fiasco is the culmination of the war between the ideologically committed old guard and the power-hungry new generation or, more precisely, between the “Vellur Lobby” and “Payyanur Lobby”, two local committees under the Payyanur Regional Committee.
“The problem had been brewing for a few years since the party decided to launch a fundraising campaign for the construction of the new office of the regional committee. The chitty was launched with attractive prizes for participants, which itself upset some of the idealists. Also, the party could increase to double the target it set when it decided to raise funds to support the family of CV Dhanaraj, a DYFI man who was killed in 2016 in Ramanthali near of Payyanur, allegedly in the hands of RSS workers,” said a stalwart comrade and member of the local CPM committee on condition of anonymity. “The embezzlement of the martyrs’ funds, the funds collected for the construction of the party office and during the elections were discussed within the party locally, but no one was ready to raise the issue openly because they were afraid of the local leadership of the dominated party”. by a section led by Payyanur MLA TI Madhusudanan,” he adds.

But things have changed since KP Madhu, who was the candidate of the Madhusudanan-led faction, had to be removed from his position as the party’s Payyanur regional secretary for sharing a sordid video clip in a WhatsApp group. The party nominated Kunhikrishnan, a silent but stalwart party man and a qualified listener as regional secretary, who had lost by only two votes in the competition for the same position earlier. After taking office as regional secretary, Kunhikrishnan searched through the books of accounts where he found glaring discrepancies in the accounts relating to the construction of the new office building for the regional committee.

“It is a known fact among party cadres that the faction led by Madhusudanan never wanted Kunhikrishnan to become regional secretary as it would not serve their interests, that is why they lobbied intensively and succeeded in getting him. However, the party had no choice but to appoint him regional secretary to save face when allegations against KP Madhu surfaced,” said Appukkuttan Karayil, a former party member and current committee member. Using his auditing skills, Kunhikrishnan prepared a detailed report, upon which the Kannur district committee of the CPM appointed another two-member committee who had no other choice than to give a nod to Kunhikrishnan’s findings because of the rigor of the report supplemented with ample evidence.

CPM sources say the party could have somehow managed to save face had it decided to take appropriate action against Madhusudanan and others who were mentioned in Kunhikrishnan’s report. “What the party supporters in Payyanur are unable to digest is why action has also been taken against Kunhikrishnan who has given a detailed and accurate report, that too inside the party forum. He never said anything outside except in party forums,” sources said. After the news of the financial embezzlement became public, the party decided to demote Madhusudanan from the district secretariat to the district committee with a similar action against two other members of the regional committee. Three other members were publicly censored. At the same time, the action against the plaintiff, Kunhikrishnan, was very harsh – he was removed from office, under the guise of unity in the party.

When the party leadership’s decision to act against the complainant and the accused was reported at the meetings of the general body of 12 local committees under the Payyanur regional committee, in the majority of the meetings, the officials in charge of reports have faced harsh criticism and, in some places, officials have not even been allowed to explain the party’s decision, according to well-informed sources. “In accordance with the party system, whatever was reported in the local committees would come for the branch committee discussions which are expected to start from Saturday – the dissatisfaction of the majority of members with the action taken against Kunhikrishnan is likely to burst,” sources said.

During the inauguration of the Vellur East branch committee office building which bears the name of Kannan Nair, a former party official who had an unblemished public life by following the ideology of the CPM in the letter and l ‘mind it was contradictory to see the image of Kunhikrishnan sitting among the audience while the people who took action against him aggressively tried to assert that the whole affair was nothing but a conspiracy aimed at defaming the party. “If the party had taken strong action against the culprits by confirming Kunhikrishnan’s findings, it would have been a strong message that could have enhanced the party’s image. However, by protecting the accused and punishing the complainant, a message was sent not to question the unhealthy or wrong actions of the party,” says writer CV Balakrishnan, also a childhood friend of Kunhikrishnan.

Although the party blamed the conspirators and the media for trying to defame him, the fact is that he was still unable to convince Kunhikrishnan despite his best efforts. “At this time, I am firm on my previous stance of ending my public life. My conclusions are supported by adequate evidence, but it is not yet time to make any further disclosures,” Kunhikrishnan told TOI. Kunhikrishnan’s unexpected decision to withdraw into a shell and abide by party restrictions, even when he decided to stick to his previous position, won him more admirers both within the party and in the community. civil society. “There is a minority like Kunhikrishnan in all parties. Such people are an inspiration to true supporters of democracy. They have no personal grudges – their loyalty is to ideology, not individuals,” says writer and critic MN Karassery.



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Disclaimer

The opinions expressed above are those of the author.



END OF ARTICLE


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  • Murmu & BJP underlings: It’s not the Adivasi vote, which the BJP is already getting, but the party’s broader political discourse around the marginalized that explains its choice of presidential candidate

  • English-Vinglish, Hindi-Shindi: India does not need a national language. Also, Hindi is growing and English is no longer elitist

  • To be truly presidential: 21st century India needs a president who will be the guardian of the conscience of democracy

  • Burning Question: Why is it so easy to burn trains? Because the RPF is effective, local police coordination is lacking

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Not a colony but a sovereign nation https://freedomtoons.org/not-a-colony-but-a-sovereign-nation/ Sun, 19 Jun 2022 03:58:07 +0000 https://freedomtoons.org/not-a-colony-but-a-sovereign-nation/ To answer why the PTI government of former Prime Minister Imran Khan was removed from office, I would like to climb the academic ladder and go back a bit in the past and talk about theory and history. The system didn’t work, thought Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels who wrote the “Social Manifesto” in 1840 […]]]>

To answer why the PTI government of former Prime Minister Imran Khan was removed from office, I would like to climb the academic ladder and go back a bit in the past and talk about theory and history. The system didn’t work, thought Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels who wrote the “Social Manifesto” in 1840 and wrote about overthrowing the manipulative system of feudalism in which the owners of production exploited and oppressed the working class. Both writers were socialist reformers and both imagined building upward bridges to end growing inequalities in the system. Almost two centuries earlier, the two anti-capitalist scholars defined history as a dialectical process produced by class struggle. As a student of international relations, when I climb the theoretical steps of the academic staircase, I am reasonably informed that all capitalists present themselves as socialists, but all true socialists are always anti-capitalists. Because capitalism inherits the compulsory exploitation of the working class and when capitalism is concentrated in a few hands, it gives rise to the monopoly of a few; and after that capitalism no longer remains capitalism but transforms into imperialism which functions on the framework of extending the interest of the few at the expense, need and cost of the majority.

All politicians in Pakistan as elsewhere in the world call themselves and declare themselves socialists and make promises after promises to the poor of this country – promises which they have never kept. As a strong nation, Pakistan might be able to bear the burden of Sharif and Zardari, but these capitalist-turned-imperialists have spent far too long in power to figure out how to never let go. To maintain themselves in power, they further create miniature imperialists in every institution and throughout society whose job it is to remain loyal to them before being loyal to the state.

In such a system, creating some kind of abundance for the whole country that everyone could benefit from was never an achievable goal. Over time, these imperialists, including the original version and the miniatures, spread all over the country and became what our biology teacher at school called the blood-sucking organisms called parasites. Parasites can only live on a willing host, and we the people are host to these parasites, because they take anything and everything from us that can fatten them up to have a nice long life while taking us away, to us the poor, even the will to stay alive and survive.

Can the poor survive now that the price of petrol has skyrocketed to Rs233 per litre? With huge sums in their pockets and properties held both at home and abroad, these imperialists are the recipients of super profits and have no idea how an ordinary man suffers. The current disruption and destruction of our political, economic and social capital is the work of those miniature imperialists and imperialists who have ruled us badly for a very long time and whose wealth living on us as host has only grown, double, triple and multiply forever. So theoretically, as long as our local imperialists are here, no socialist or reformist like Imran Khan will be allowed to chart a new course of travel.

This brings me to the second step of the academic staircase – history. Escalating this, of course, is a huge question, but given that I plan to answer the question of why Imran Khan’s government was overthrown. I will only take a small bite of this historical portion of bread relevant to the impeachment of Imran Khan. For this I will have to take the readers to the course of a Cold War 3 (assuming that Cold War 1 was about the USSR-US rivalry and Cold War 2 was about the US-US rivalry and China).

A Cold War 3 overlaps Cold War 2 and although the United States fights it with multiple objectives, its primary political objective is to isolate Russia. Not Ukraine but the whole world is his battlefield. American propagandists create an environment and a global mood in which any country, even if it imagines siding with Russia, will submit to the wrath of the United States. And imagine our former Prime Minister not only negotiating the possibility of buying wheat and oil from Russia at a reduced cost, he was doing it on Russian soil the very day Russia invaded Ukraine.

“Either you can be a colony or you can be sovereign,” Russian President Vladimir Putin said. If we were a ruler, we would never have experienced the regime change that we have experienced. While keeping the honor, dignity and respect of the noble profession with which some of us are associated, can a professor of political science justify regime change to students of any university in Pakistan and how he was executed – and that too to be replaced by a government that has a cabinet full of crooks and criminals?

Since the start of the war in Ukraine, the United States has been threatening China, which is a vital partner of Russia, that if it supports Russia, it will lead to a deterioration of relations between the two countries. China has so far not criticized the Russian invasion of Ukraine. In fact, both President Putin and President Xi Jinping are of the view that the global economy has become complicated due to the West’s policy of illegal sanctions and that the global economic slowdown is not only a concern for Russia. and China, but the whole world.

President Joe Biden says all countries that support Russia’s war in Ukraine are on the wrong side of history. The UN General Assembly has so far passed three US-sponsored resolutions on Ukraine. The first in March called on Russia to halt its offensive and withdraw its troops from Ukraine. No less than 141 countries voted for, 5 against and 35 abstained (countries representing more than 50% of the world’s population did not vote for). The second UN resolution in March called for the protection of civilians and humanitarian access to Ukraine. This time, 5 countries voted against and 38 abstained. The third UN resolution in April called for Russia’s suspension from the Human Rights Council. In the assembly of 193 members, 93 voted for and 24 against while 53 abstained.

Clearly, the pattern of voting in the UN General Assembly shows that geoeconomics more than geopolitics drives politics today. Isn’t that what Imran Khan’s government said when it launched its first-ever national security policy? If his economic policy was going well, what was the reason for his withdrawal, except that it was the brainchild of our internal and external imperialists. Our political and economic future is tied to regional powers like China and Russia. History will laugh at us if we continue to attach our national interests to a distant power across the Atlantic and the Pacific.

Finally, bridge the inequality gap by learning socialist theories and ideologies and learn from history by shaking hands with China and Russia, but also keeping the United States as your friend. But please, as President Putin said, “don’t be a colony, be a sovereign nation”.

Published in The Express Tribune, June 19e2022.

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Living Ain’t Easy — The Outer Limits of Anti-Capitalist Irish Jazz – The Irish Times https://freedomtoons.org/living-aint-easy-the-outer-limits-of-anti-capitalist-irish-jazz-the-irish-times/ Fri, 17 Jun 2022 05:00:00 +0000 https://freedomtoons.org/living-aint-easy-the-outer-limits-of-anti-capitalist-irish-jazz-the-irish-times/ Living is not easy Artist: Robocobra Quartet Gender: Jazz Label: First taste records Thank goodness for the Robocobra Quartet. If they didn’t exist, Irish jazz would have to invent them. Every scene needs its outer limits defined and explored, and over the past decade, drummer Chris Ryan’s ever-evolving Belfast collective has bravely occupied the frontier […]]]>

Living is not easy

Artist: Robocobra Quartet

Gender: Jazz

Label: First taste records

Thank goodness for the Robocobra Quartet. If they didn’t exist, Irish jazz would have to invent them. Every scene needs its outer limits defined and explored, and over the past decade, drummer Chris Ryan’s ever-evolving Belfast collective has bravely occupied the frontier where jazz and improvisation meet post-punk, l rock art and revolutionary politics.

Their 2016 debut album, Music for all Occasions, was a liberating explosion of drums, bass and horns (guitars are not allowed in the Robocobra universe) that refracted Mingus and Zappa through a Black Flag prism, and the follow-up, 2018′s Plays Hard to Get, further expanded his studio palette.

Now their third, Living Isn’t Easy, is a true concept album, a suite of connected sound images about the anxieties of modern life that weave Ryan’s spoken-word narratives through layers of groove, brass and synths. spatial. Wellness, the album’s second track, was released as a single in April and, while it didn’t exactly trouble the tops of the pop charts, it is a verbatim reading of easy health advice from a magazine article that becomes an archaic satire of modern worship. of self-realization.

Beneath the situationist critique, there are grooves, horns and solos, particularly on the album’s centerpiece, Chromo Sud, that might have Robocobra accused of being, you know, a jazz band, but Living Isn’t Easy probably best presents itself as a critique of late capitalism. And God knows we need it.

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EDITORIAL: Kishida must return to his vow to tackle social wealth disparity https://freedomtoons.org/editorial-kishida-must-return-to-his-vow-to-tackle-social-wealth-disparity/ Wed, 15 Jun 2022 05:36:00 +0000 https://freedomtoons.org/editorial-kishida-must-return-to-his-vow-to-tackle-social-wealth-disparity/ The “doubling of asset incomes”, which has recently become Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s favorite slogan, unmistakably points to the preservation of shareholder capitalism and thus the widening of the wealth gap. This calls for careful consideration, as it runs counter to his economic policy at the start of his administration. Kishida said in a speech […]]]>

The “doubling of asset incomes”, which has recently become Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s favorite slogan, unmistakably points to the preservation of shareholder capitalism and thus the widening of the wealth gap.

This calls for careful consideration, as it runs counter to his economic policy at the start of his administration.

Kishida said in a speech he gave in London last month, “I will promote a bold and fundamental shift from saving to investing, to double income from asset investing.”

He also said in the action plan to realize his new form of capitalism, approved by the Cabinet on June 7, that he will draw up a “comprehensive plan of measures to double income from assets by the end of this year. “.

Although details of the plan have yet to be decided – such as when the doubling will be achieved – Kishida said he is considering expanding the Nippon Individual Savings Account (NISA), a tax exemption system introduced in 2014 for small sum investments.

In Japan, more than 50% of all household financial assets are made up of cash and savings, and the ratio of equity assets is much lower than in Europe and the United States. This reflects the structural reality in Japan where the general public has hardly ever benefited from rising stock prices.

In a context of steadily aging populations and low birth rates, public pension payments are expected to decline, as the system relies heavily on premiums paid by the working-age generation.

For this reason, we do not refute the need in itself to help households build wealth to supplement their income.

However, it should be remembered that many households do not have the money to invest and not everyone has the same level of investment knowledge.

A survey by the Central Council for Financial Services Information found that 33% of one-person households and 22% of households with two or more members had no financial assets they could save for investment.

And according to a Financial Services Agency survey of people who have never invested and why, the top two reasons were “I don’t have excess funds” (39%) and “I don’t know anything about investing” ( 19%) .

Given this situation, the introduction of excessive tax relief or any other investment incentive could well aggravate the current asset income gap or cause many people to make poor investment decisions and pay dearly for them in their old age.

The first thing to do is to increase wages to increase household incomes and, at the same time, provide better financial education for all. The government must clarify its priorities.

While campaigning for the Liberal Democratic Party presidency, Kishida advocated “the Reiwa version of income doubling” and called for a redistribution of wealth through tougher taxes on investment income.

So why did it change its policy to “double asset income” with tax relief for investors?

If he thinks that attracting huge amounts of personal financial assets to the stock market will drive up stock prices and lead to a higher approval rating for his cabinet, he is being irresponsibly naïve. .

His campaign promise to bring about a “transition from shareholder-primacy capitalism” through his “new form of capitalism” might just be an empty slogan.

If his administration gives its official blessing to measures to drive up stock prices and increase dividends to shareholders, Kishida will no longer be able to persuade companies to care not just about their shareholders, but also about their workers, of their business partners, the environment and the sink. -being of society as a whole.

We renew our firm request to the Prime Minister to return to his initial commitment to correct the unequal distribution of wealth and income.

–The Asahi Shimbun, June 15

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Tim Hortons tracked when customers went to Starbucks…and more. Lessons for US Privacy Law — bobsullivan.net https://freedomtoons.org/tim-hortons-tracked-when-customers-went-to-starbucks-and-more-lessons-for-us-privacy-law-bobsullivan-net/ Mon, 13 Jun 2022 13:47:26 +0000 https://freedomtoons.org/tim-hortons-tracked-when-customers-went-to-starbucks-and-more-lessons-for-us-privacy-law-bobsullivan-net/ How much sugar do you want with this coffee? And how much monitoring? If you “cheated” on your favorite coffee with another, would you mind an app talking to you? Earlier this month, The Privacy Commissioner of Canada has found that the Tim Hortons chain broke the law by monitoring app users, who were “tracked […]]]>

How much sugar do you want with this coffee? And how much monitoring? If you “cheated” on your favorite coffee with another, would you mind an app talking to you?

Earlier this month, The Privacy Commissioner of Canada has found that the Tim Hortons chain broke the law by monitoring app users, who were “tracked and logged every few minutes of every day, even when their app was not open”. Sounds bad enough, but the story behind the investigation reveals that a far scarier surveillance capitalism was unfolding. Two years ago, Financial Post reporter James McLeod used Canadian law to compel every bit of information Tim Hortons had collected about him and twisted it into a dramatic narrative.

“I had no idea the extent of the tracking data until I saw it. There were readings taken at all times of the day and night, and (the app) was monitoring me every time. that the app thought I was visiting one of its competitors,” he wrote.

The app, McLeod found, “identified where he lived and worked…and noted when he thought he had walked into a Starbucks, Second Cup, McDonald’s, Pizza Pizza, A&W, KFC or Subway,” according to the Canadian investigation. . He also knew when he went to a Toronto Blue Jays baseball game, when he went to Manitoba for a wedding, even when he arrived at Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam.

The full survey is worth reading; the same goes for the original report of 2020.

As the conversation around a federal privacy law in the United States appears to be suddenly reignited, much to the delight of many who thought efforts to pass legislation during this trying political season were doomed to failure, there are still many unanswered questions. Do tech industry insiders have too much to say about proposed language in US data protection and privacy law? Will consumers really gain new protections, or will the law entrench existing (bad) behaviors? And how many exceptions will be made for law enforcement, for employers, even for data brokers? Shoshana Wodinsky at Gizmodo offers here a balanced and skeptical analysis of the bill in its current form. And one the summary of its provisions is here (PDF).

But I think the timing of the Tim Hortons investigation is helpful, because as wacky as the story is, it also highlights a few things that worked well. McLeod only had a hunch that something was wrong because Google added a new privacy feature to its smartphone – the option to limit sharing location information with apps only when they’re open. The Tim Hortons app requested more access than that, leading McLeod to file a so-called PIPEDA request. Under Canada’s Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA), users can ask companies to disclose any data that has been collected about them. When McLeod received his response, he had his story, and the Privacy Commissioner of Canada investigated.

Under the California State Privacy Act, consumers can now file what are known as Data Subject Subject Access Requests (DSARs) and get reports similar to the one that McLeod got from Tim Hortons. This right of disclosure should be an essential tool for all Americans, made as simple as possible and widely advertised as a feature. In its current form, US privacy and data protection law requires such disclosure and, importantly, that it be made available “in a human-readable and downloadable format that individuals can understand without expertise.” . Of course, most consumers won’t take advantage of this opportunity, but a few will. And who knows what stories might be uncovered as a result.

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Mastering Big Tech is the key to competition and capitalism https://freedomtoons.org/mastering-big-tech-is-the-key-to-competition-and-capitalism/ Sat, 11 Jun 2022 19:15:02 +0000 https://freedomtoons.org/mastering-big-tech-is-the-key-to-competition-and-capitalism/ OPINION: In the golden age of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, powerful elites such as John Rockefeller, JP Morgan and Andrew Carnegie controlled oil, railroads and steel, key commercial industries on which businesses, large and small, relied upon to engage in trade. With commercial power controlled by these few “robber barons”, capitalism began […]]]>

In the golden age of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, powerful elites such as John Rockefeller, JP Morgan and Andrew Carnegie controlled oil, railroads and steel, key commercial industries on which businesses, large and small, relied upon to engage in trade.

With commercial power controlled by these few “robber barons”, capitalism began to become more of an oligarchy, where wealth became concentrated in the hands of the elite at the expense of consumer prices, innovation and competition for growing businesses across the country.

Enter Republican President Teddy Roosevelt, who began using the Sherman Act (passed in 1890) to break up Rockefeller’s Standard Oil and Morgan’s rail conglomerate Northern Securities.

Today, the era of Big Tech’s robber barons poses a far greater threat to our country than their golden age predecessors. Big Tech robber barons like Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google are the guardians of commerce and information, giving them the kind of commercial and political power that John Rockefeller could only wield in his dreams. With nearly $250 billion in profits in 2021 alone, these four companies are able to wield unilateral power to dictate how we search, share and buy, and are able to crush competitors, amass exorbitant data, customers and profits.

Consider how Amazon uses data about independent sellers on its platform to develop cheaper competing products and then prioritize them on its platform. Meanwhile, Google enjoys an unlimited virtual monopoly on search, advertising and mobile, making it nearly impossible for small businesses to compete. Apple also enjoys overwhelming power in its market, using that power to decide which apps can and cannot be accessed through its platform and generate mega-profits, while stifling competition from small businesses.

Meanwhile, these four Big Tech robber barons not only enjoy comfortable business relations with the People’s Republic of China, but also cater to the whims of the Chinese government and rely on its cheap labor and production. It is estimated that 75% of products sold on Amazon are made in China and more than a third of Amazon sellers are based there. Apple hit a record 23% market share in China last year and plans to use memory chips made by Wuhan-based Yangtze Memory Technologies Co. in its iPhones, despite more established developers in the US and in other Asian countries.

Despite China’s Facebook ban, the country’s state-sponsored media recently bought Facebook ads to push pro-Russian propaganda and Google recently produced a censored search engine project – Dragonfly – on demand. of the pro-censorship Chinese Communist Party.

It’s time for lawmakers to fully recognize in word and deed that America’s economic strength is the result of elected leaders like Roosevelt prioritizing the innovation and market competition that make capitalism work. Likewise, America’s health as a functioning republic depends on a robust marketplace of ideas, where speech and information are not strangled by political motivations.

That’s why lawmakers must act now to rein in Big Tech’s robber barons before America is ruled, not by informed citizens, but rather by an unholy alliance between Big Tech and the federal government, the former doing advancing his interest in raw and unfettered trade. power and the latter through political manipulation and censorship.

A key piece of legislation that can help accomplish this is the US Online Choice and Innovation Act.

The bill would create consumer choice and improve access by preventing Big Tech gatekeepers from choosing their own products over those of competitors, by requiring a company to purchase goods and services from a Big Tech gatekeeper. for preferred placement on the platform, misusing a company’s data to compete with that. company, skew search results in favor of the Big Tech gatekeeper and against the smaller competitor, and prioritize strict privacy and security protections for American consumers and businesses.

In addition, AICOA would give antitrust authorities the power to deter violations and hold violators accountable for illegal behavior through civil penalties, general injunctions, emergency interim relief, and possible forfeiture of executive compensation.

There will be those who hesitate to give government such sweeping powers to interfere with the private sector, but that misses the point. The private sector and our system of capitalism is not about allowing unfettered growth of private enterprise, but rather about maintaining a system where competition, innovation and consumer choice can thrive, leading to a stronger system where Oligarchic powers aren’t able to stifle economic growth and get the kind of raw power to influence politics just in their name, as is the case with the Big Tech robber barons.

It is imperative that our elected officials, regardless of their party, recognize that they are at a moment in history that calls for the same type of action that Roosevelt applied over 100 years ago, and that he it’s time for them to do the same.

• Ian Prior is the former senior director of public affairs for the Trump administration’s Department of Justice.

]]> Remembering the Radical Politics of Marilyn Monroe – OpEd – Eurasia Review https://freedomtoons.org/remembering-the-radical-politics-of-marilyn-monroe-oped-eurasia-review/ Fri, 03 Jun 2022 23:27:32 +0000 https://freedomtoons.org/remembering-the-radical-politics-of-marilyn-monroe-oped-eurasia-review/ June 1, 2022 was Marilyn Monroe’s 96the birthday. Although our neoliberal age of hyper-commodification has only reinforced her image as a sex symbol, the political dimensions of Monroe’s life tell a different story from underground radicalism. Born in 1926, outside of Los Angeles, California, USA, Monroe grew up as a working-class child during the Depression […]]]>

June 1, 2022 was Marilyn Monroe’s 96the birthday. Although our neoliberal age of hyper-commodification has only reinforced her image as a sex symbol, the political dimensions of Monroe’s life tell a different story from underground radicalism. Born in 1926, outside of Los Angeles, California, USA, Monroe grew up as a working-class child during the Depression years. She spent her childhood moving back and forth in foster homes in Los Angeles, living for a few years with her mother who had picked her up until the latter was taken, watched by her daughter, to a mental institution. audience. When Monroe was sent to an orphanage at the age of nine, she said she was not an orphan, since her mother was still alive – an argument she repeated constantly throughout her life. .

Monroe’s traumatic childhood is something that is easily overlooked by people. His rise to fame in the world of cinema was quickly interpreted by the pro-bourgeois ideologues of his time as clear evidence of the “rags to riches” narrative. But Monroe was completely opposed to this romanticized erasure of the extremely real deprivations she faced due to the structural injustice of the capitalist system. In 1962 she wrote in his notes, “The lack of constant love and attention. A distrust and fear of the world resulted. There was no benefit except what it could teach me about the basic needs of young people, sick and weak “I have a great feeling for all the persecuted in the world.”

When Monroe – as a poor starlet – was invited to Hollywood parties as a sex object to ogle, she felt disgusted by the card games the men played, where they casually risked thousands of dollars. “When I saw them giving each other hundred or even thousand dollar bills,” Monroe said. noticed“I felt something bitter in my heart. I remembered how much twenty-five cents and even five cents meant to the people I had known, how happy ten dollars would have made them, how a hundred dollars would have changed their entire life…I remembered all the sounds and smells of poverty, of the fear in people’s eyes when they lost their jobs.’ This lifelong identification with the proletariat was reflected in Monroe’s lifestyle.

After his death, the total value of his clothing and personal effects was estimated at $690. Instead of owning multiple mansions – a common practice among Hollywood stars – the first home Monroe ever owned was a modest little place in Los Angeles, which was still under construction at the time of her death. This devaluation of the cultural and material universe of the rich was the result of his ability to think critically about his own social environment. However, such thinking was contrary to the objectifying way it was portrayed in the movies. Her cinematic persona involved the strategic separation of sexuality from intelligence, from brain beauty, giving rise to her widely held perception of “dumb blonde”. Like Abbie Bakan elaborate:

“She was consistently cast in roles so naive they were unintentionally funny, roles in which she led men into unusual antics, pushed them beyond their normal controls. The characters she played were normally celibate, prizes up for grabs at the end of movies by conquering males; usually she was working-class, portraying the Hollywood mystique of uneducated animal instincts that middle-class “intelligence” women could not to offer so freely, and universally incapable of depth, intelligence, or growth.Marilyn Monroe was almost never allowed to play the kind of role she—and millions of working-class women—hoped to achieve in the real life. It was the “fame” she had earned.

The stifling nature of Monroe’s Hollywood career meant that she was naturally drawn to counter-hegemonic political positions that promised to liberate humanity from the alienating effects of capitalism. She openly defended Communist Party members who were under investigation by the House Un-American Activities Committee during the McCarthy period. For her, the following reason was enough to associate herself with members of the Hollywood Ten and victims of the lawsuit like Arthur Miller: “They are for the people, aren’t they? “. In 1955, she applied for a visa to travel to the Soviet Union, after which the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) began monitoring her.

According to FBI records, Monroe was in close contact with Frederick Vanderbilt Field – an American leftist residing in Mexico, who had been disinherited by his wealthy family due to his radical views. Several months before her death, she took a trip to visit Field in Mexico. In his autobiography, “From Right to Left,” Field admired Monroe’s strong commitment to the cause of human liberation: “She told us about her strong feelings for civil rights for black equality, as well as her admiration for what was being done in China, her anger at the red -baiting and McCarthyism and his hatred of (FBI Director) J. Edgar Hoover.

In 1960, Monroe became a founding member of the Hollywood branch of the Committee for Sound Nuclear Policy; that same year, she was elected as an alternate delegate to the state’s Democratic caucus, where she unambiguously declared his pro-Castro views on Cuba. Monroe’s sympathy for anti-capitalist and anti-imperialist struggles stemmed from the oppressions she faced. In a conjuncture characterized by the beginning of the civil rights movement, Monroe linked her commodification by media moguls to the racism black people were fighting against. It was, she said“easy to understand the slave system when you have gone through the star system”.

Christine, a young black woman whom the Manchester goalkeeper journalist Bill Weatherby met at a party in the Southern States in the early 1960s, declared that Monroe was the only white woman she truly respected. “She was injured. She knows what the score is… I could never relate to another white movie star. It was always white people doing white things. The famous black American writer James Baldwin also identified with Monroe. When Monroe was asked how her social status as a white and blonde sex symbol would impact her reception among black people, she replied, “I don’t want to be the symbol of anything. Black people can sometimes see through appearances better than white people.

On issues of sexuality, she was equally progressive, willing to question Hollywood’s prioritization of heterosexuality as the only legitimate form of love. Years before the emergence of the queer movement, she defended gay actor Montgomery Clift against harassment and ridicule from the press: “People who are not fit to open the door to him laugh at his homosexuality. What do they know about it? Labels – people love to put labels on each other. Then they feel safe. “No sex is bad if there’s love in it.”

Today, as sexual commodification continues to present Monroe as a docile body destined for capitalist consumption, it is imperative to emphasize the emancipatory orientation of her life. Far from being a stupid blonde, she was a woman from a proletarian background deeply aware of the brutal way in which capitalism suppressed universal desires for common fulfillment. In order to hide this crucial aspect of its personality, the bourgeoisie wants us remember “Monroe…like a cheesecake smile and cleavage.” This utterly dehumanizing portrayal of Monroe must be replaced with a holistic perspective that insists on pursuing his continually suppressed aspirations for active revolution against the passive structures of capitalism.

]]> Inside the Politics: Student Loan Cancellation and Capitalism | Columnists https://freedomtoons.org/inside-the-politics-student-loan-cancellation-and-capitalism-columnists/ Thu, 02 Jun 2022 14:30:00 +0000 https://freedomtoons.org/inside-the-politics-student-loan-cancellation-and-capitalism-columnists/ The issue of student loan forgiveness is resurfacing the national news cycle. This is not surprising given that the midterm elections are fast approaching. It would be a bit bold to say that the Democrats are re-raising the issue to win favor with voters in November. To be fair, this issue has been dragging on […]]]>

The issue of student loan forgiveness is resurfacing the national news cycle. This is not surprising given that the midterm elections are fast approaching. It would be a bit bold to say that the Democrats are re-raising the issue to win favor with voters in November. To be fair, this issue has been dragging on the national stage since at least 2015, and the Biden administration has been considering some sort of pardon program since the president took office.

Along with the problem come complaints about the cancellation of student loans. As a lifelong former Republican, I believe there are reasonable fiscal and, perhaps, moral arguments to be made about why student loan forgiveness should be limited and narrowly tailored to those who need it the most. I would also favor a program in which the loan forgiveness is more generous towards certain degrees or certificates such as career technical students (mechanics, electricians, etc.), teachers, engineers, medical professionals, etc. Call me old-fashioned, but I’m not too keen on spending taxpayers’ money forgiving student loans for NYU art history majors.

People also read…

However, one of the most “popular” arguments against canceling student loans is also the most mean-spirited and myopic. It’s the classic rebuttal of “I had to pay back my loans so everyone else would too.” It sounds like my 6-year-old nephew’s argument when he refuses to go to bed because his 11-year-old brother has to stay up half an hour later.

For the record, I arrived in Idaho in 2006 with about $47,000 in student debt which I paid off in full a few years later. I had no chance of student loan forgiveness then, and I won’t in the future since the debt is gone. That being said, I have no problem with existing student borrowers receiving some kind of relief. Just because I didn’t take advantage of it doesn’t mean others shouldn’t.

By definition, “progress,” whatever form it takes, benefits the current generation in ways that the rest of us have missed. For example, I never received Obamacare or Medicaid Expansion. When I was in college and without health insurance, I couldn’t be on my parents’ health care plan or apply for Medicaid. Young men and women today can stay on their parents’ plan until age 26 or purchase a plan under the Affordable Care Act. Many of our grandparents did not have access to Medicare. Are you suggesting we take that benefit away from the millions of Americans who receive health care under the program? Even those who take more out of Medicare than they put into it? And Social Security?

And don’t get me started on the right-wingers who were asking for “handouts” during the financial crisis to help save their homes (I’ve seen hundreds of such people go bankrupt). Many of these people have been able to pay off their mortgage debt and get by. Student borrowers do not have the same luxury as student loans are almost never discharged through the bankruptcy process.

The average student loan debt for Idaho’s 218,000 borrowers is around $33,000 according to various websites that track the numbers. This equates to $7.2 billion in total student loan debt in Idaho. The total higher education budget for the Gem State this year is less than $650 million. Half of those borrowers are under 35, which means more than 100,000 “older” Idahoans are indebted for a student loan. Although Idaho’s average student loan debt is lower than the national average, we also have one of the lowest income rates in the country. In other words, $33,000 is a big change. Some kind of student forgiveness would bring much-needed relief to thousands of working families in Idaho who are struggling not only under the weight of student debt, but also skyrocketing property taxes and a government of State that favors Californians over Idahoans.

In my view, a responsible and closely tailored student loan forgiveness program is an investment in our children and our families. It is not alms. However, if you think otherwise, don’t be hypocritical about it. We have all missed opportunities that now benefit younger generations.

This is how progress works. This is how it should be.

Jeremy J. Gugino is a Democratic communications volunteer.

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Here are the 82 artists participating in the Berlin Biennale 2022, curated by artist Kader Attia https://freedomtoons.org/here-are-the-82-artists-participating-in-the-berlin-biennale-2022-curated-by-artist-kader-attia/ Tue, 31 May 2022 14:29:12 +0000 https://freedomtoons.org/here-are-the-82-artists-participating-in-the-berlin-biennale-2022-curated-by-artist-kader-attia/ The 12th Berlin Biennale, curated by artist Kader Attia, announced its list of participants today, just a week before the fair opens. The 82 international artists featured in the exhibition will address themes such as global capitalism and decolonialism. Participants include Forensic Architecture, Lawrence Abu Hamdan, Imani Jacqueline Brown, Roberto Crippa, Omer Fast, Basel Abbas […]]]>

The 12th Berlin Biennale, curated by artist Kader Attia, announced its list of participants today, just a week before the fair opens. The 82 international artists featured in the exhibition will address themes such as global capitalism and decolonialism.

Participants include Forensic Architecture, Lawrence Abu Hamdan, Imani Jacqueline Brown, Roberto Crippa, Omer Fast, Basel Abbas and Ruanne Abou-Rahman, and Zuzanna Hertzberg, all of whose contributions stem from research into what the organizers call “action frantic and destructive of world capitalism”. race to production.

The exhibition, titled “Still Present!”, takes place at several venues in Berlin, including the Akademie der Künste, the Hamburger Bahnhof, the KW Institute of Contemporary Art and the headquarters of the Stasi.

“Since the beginning of modernity, our planet has undergone successive and ruinous changes which have accelerated in an alarming manner since the beginning of the third millennium”, we read in the text of the commissioner’s office. “The place where we have arrived today is no accident: it is the result of historical formations built over centuries.”

Exploring the wounds of a society deeply marked by inequality, the Biennale will address the many changes needed to reconceptualize the world according to more egalitarian values.

“In their selfishness, modern Western societies have taken their own liberal character for granted, mistakenly assuming that the balance between free trade and universal suffrage guarantees a self-regulating system of universal democratic values. The dystopian society from which we have inherited this utopian promise produces chaos but denies responsibility for it.

See the full list of artists below:

Alex Prager; Amal Kenawy; Ammar Bouras; Antonio Recalcati, Enrico Baj, Erró, Gianni Dova, Jean-Jacques Lebel, Roberto Crippa; Ariella Aïcha Azoulay; Asim Abdulaziz; Basel Abbas and Ruanne Abou-Rahme; Binta Diaw; Birender Yadav; Calida Garcia Rawles; Christine Safatly; Clement Cogitore; DAAR – Sandi Hilal and Alessandro Petti; Dana Levy; Dao Chau Hai; David Chavalarias; Deneth Piumakshi Veda Arachchige; Driss Ouadahi; Dubreus Lherisson; Elske Rosenfeld; Etinosa Yvonne; Florian Song Nguyễn; forensic architecture; Haig Aivazian; High Hasan Özgür; Imani Jacqueline Brown; Jean-Jacques Lebel; Jeneen Frei Njootli; Jihan El-Tahri; Joao Polido; Khandakar Ohida; Lamia Joreige; Lawrence Abu Hamdan; Layth Kareem; Mai Nguyễn-Long; Maithu Bui; Marta Popivoda/Ana Vujanovic; Mathieu Pernot; Mayuri Chari; Mila Turajlic; Monica de Miranda; Moses Marz; Myriam El Haik; Ngô Thành Bắc; Nil Yalter; Noel W Anderson; Olivier Marboeuf; Omer Fasting; PERU – Center for Exploration of Urban Resources; Prabhakar Kamble; Prane and Self; Raed Mutar; Sajjad Abbas; Sammy Baloji; Simone Fattal; Susan Schuppli; Susana Pilar; Sven Johne; Taloi Havini; Tammy Nguyen; Taysir Batniji; Tejswini Narayan Sonawane; Temitayo Ogunbiyi; The School of Mutants (Boris Raux, Hamedine Kane, Lou Mo, Stéphane Verlet Bottéro, Valérie Osouf); Thùy-Hân Nguyễn-Chí; Tuấn Andrew Nguyễn; Uriel Orlow; Yuyan Wang; Zach Blas; Zuzanna Herzberg.

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