Archive for March, 2012

Ending the monopolies, and the monopoly of the monopolies

March 26, 2012

Frankly, anyone arguing for the “right to pay  taxes” is probably not the sharpest cookie. But why do we pay taxes, anyway? We’re not all smart, but we’re also not all stupid. Most are afraid to bite the hands which appear to feed them.

Of course, their fear is not entirely well-founded. It’s the workers who actually feed themselves, and their fellow workers, while a class of wealthy people and legislators rob them by force of law. As a classical anarchist text notes: “Rent is the monopoly of land, interest the monopoly of money, profit  the monopoly of trade, and government the monopoly of the monopolies.” To elaborate on this point, Laurance Labadie called “the ‘health, education, and welfare’ section of government” just “another boondoggle.”  “First,” he said, “we manufacture indigent and superfluous people by legal monopolies in land, money and idea patents, erecting tariff barriers to protect monopolies from foreign competition, and taxing laborers to subsidize rich farmers and privileged manufacturers. Then we create ‘social workers,’ etc., to care for them and thereby establish a self-aggravating and permanent institutionalized phenomenon…”   By such means, the odds are stacked against us average folks.

Provided there are taxes — and other economic burdens — imposed on younger  generations, I don’t see a peaceful, warm & fuzzy solution  to their socio-economic problems. The older generations are inevitably to blame for that, sadly. And, being brainwashed by their elders, the new generation takes a current trend and  projects it indefinitely into the future. Thus are spawned more little tax-and-spend yuppies and greedy corporate crooks, and the chicanery of law used to protect their interests and assert their dominance.  Thankfully, some workers are doing their best to assert their interests over those of so-called “public” and “private” institutions. For example: “In a record turn-out, as many as three million people hit the streets in France…to protest against the government’s economic policies in response to the global crisis, according to union estimates. The numbers were closer to 1.2 million, say the police. The country’s airports, trains, schools and public transport were disrupted by the mass demonstration – the second general strike faced by France in two months.”   (1)

Similarly, “When the 250 workers at the Republic Windows and Doors factory in Chicago were told that the plant was shutting down, they decided to take matters into their own hands…. the workers occupied their factory in an act that echoes the sit-down strikes of the 1930s in the US and the occupation of factories during the 2001 crisis in Argentina.” (2)  In Ireland, the workers at Waterford Crystal occupied their plant. “Rather than accept the closure of the business, the loss of all the jobs and the destruction of the area’s premier industry; workers seized the buildings making liquidation impossible for the receiver.” (3)  A broader message is this:  Get rid of legal compulsion and people are free to (a) create their own currency or IOU’s, or (b) barter freely, basing value entirely on what is actually traded.

It can happen!

NOTES:  1.  “Up to three million march in French mass protest,” Elitsa Vucheva, EUobserver.com, 20.03.2009: http://euobserver.com/9/27815

2.  “Workers Occupy Chicago Factory: Echoes of Argentina’s 2001 Worker Uprising,” Benjamin Dangl, CommonDreams.org, December 9, 2008:  http://www.commondreams.org/view/2008/12/09

3.  “Clear as Crystal … Waterford shows how to fight,” James McBarron, Workers Solidarity MOvement, March 11, 2009: http://www.wsm.ie/news_viewer/5291

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