You are the captains of American industry, the titans of Wall Street, and the billionaires who for decades have been the backbone of the Republican Party.
I found Robert's article a bit disturbing in that he frames the problem in a way that industry isn't doing what it can to increase consumer spending when in fact our obsession with shopping must not only be curtailed, it must be re-examined to fully understand the role consumerism plays in the environmental destruction of the planet. We don't need to turn our poorest Americans into avid shoppers, we need to end poverty. These concepts are not synonymous but rather run counter with each other.
Under the Reich model, the tweaking of capitalism to bring about more income for the 99% is so that we can reinvigorate consumer spending habits.
For example. A consumer with more income is more likely to buy an SUV, a new appliance perhaps and upgrade their Comcast channel choices. This would be good for corporate America at every level. However this would also serve to accelerate the on going damage to our fragile planet. On the other hand a progressive and environmentally conscious person with an increase in income would prefer to see more public transit (less need for an SUV), prolong their existing appliances and cancel the need for Comcast all together because now the individual will have the freedom to get out of the house and socialize. The progressive also knows that any shopping decision they make, must take into account the impact their choice will have on the environment. None of the 'alternative' consumers benefit corporate America unless corporate America bends to the needs of the new environment. Instead what we have is the corporation bending the public's perception to meet their needs regardless of the social and environmental consequences of their products.
If Reich therefore advocated an end to Republicanism because of their allegiance to globally destructive practices rather than their short sighted unwillingness to give our most vulnerable an opportunity to shop more (thereby further enriching the 1%), then we would all be one big happy family. This is what distinguishes people like Robert Reich from the Hedges and Chomsky's of the world; Reich misses the whole point, that a fundamentally radical ideology driven by the self preservation of the collective has to replace the current culture of mass consumerism all together.
Many of the billionaires today are Democrats...Gates, Zuckerberg, Ellison, Winfrey, Soros,..ect. I think this could be an open letter to the Democratic Establishment too.
Great article. But economic growth and the sustainability we need to forestall ecocide are mutually exclusive.
The nostalgia of liberals for a glorious Republican Party of yesteryear never ceases to amaze me.
Republicans hated the New Deal and fought it every inch, tooth and nail.
The Republican Party was and always has nested nazis, fascists, and white supremecists:
“ Investigative reporter Christopher Simpson says in BLOWBACK that after World War II, Nazi émigrés were
given CIA subsidies to build a far-right-wing power base in the U.S. These Nazis assumed prominent positions
in the Republican Party's "ethnic outreach committees." Simpson documents the fact that these Nazis did not
come to America as individuals but as part of organized groups with fascist political agendas. The Nazi agenda
did not die along with Adolf Hitler. It moved to America (or a part of it did) and joined the far right of the
“ Journalist Russ Bellant (OLD NAZIS, THE NEW RIGHT, AND THE REPUBLICAN PARTY) sh”Trading With The Enemy” and American ows that
Laszlo Pasztor, a convicted Nazi war collaborator, built the Republican émigré network. Pasztor, who served as
adviser to Republican Paul Weyrich, belonged to the Hungarian Arrow Cross, a group that helped liquidate
Hungary's Jews. Pasztor was founding chairman of the Republican Heritage Groups Council.”
Also, check out “Trading With The Enemy”, and “American Swastika”, both by Charles Higham.
Also the Bushes, among others:
"On October 20, 1942, the US Alien Property Custodian, under the "Trading With the Enemy Act," seized the shares of the Union Banking Corporation (UBC), of which Prescott Bush was a director and shareholder. The largest shareholder was E. Roland Harriman. (Bush was also the managing partner of Brown Brothers Harriman, a leading Wall Street investment firm.)
"The UBC was established to send American capital to Germany to finance the reorganization of its industry under the Nazis. Their leading German partner was the notorious Nazi industrialist Fritz Thyssen, who wrote a book admitting much of this called "I Paid Hitler."
Yes there were some nazi-lovers among the Democrats, mainly the dixiecrat racists from the south, but nazis and other fascists (Ustashi, Romainian Iron Guard) were not nested in the Democratic party as an organization.
Finally, let's not forget the era of McCarthyism, HUAC, blacklists and the red scare of the fifties, all Republican projects. Some Dems and many liberals were bullied and intimidated into cooperating, but that's not the same thing.
There was a slight computer burp. The sentence should read: Journalist Russ Bellant (OLD NAZIS, THE NEW RIGHT, AND THE REPUBLICAN PARTY) shows that"...etc.
I'm happy to see Reich throw his support and reputation behind Bernie, and I agree that's it a good article. But Ms. Warren from Massachusetts would make a far better Treasury Secretary, and I'll throw Michael Hudson's name into the hat for head of the Fed. Reich has had his shot--time for new blood all around.
Pathetic. If all we've got is this kind of schoolyard appeal to the bully's long-term self-interest not to harm an innocent other, we're doomed as a species.