If this is another capitalism reform effort, ahemmm…
Tis the final conflict
Let each stand in his place.
The International Shall be the NGOs
Unconscious irrational voting, irrational leaders and physiological manipulation.
Read an article recently about Cambridge Analytica. What suddenly hit me was that if you use deeply manipulative irrational techniques, your electorate can only vote for irrational leaders. That is the only logical outcome. Greed is the overwhelming irrational motive of our times. That’s why these techniques are used. The result is science is ignored in favour of power and profit. Doctors, climate scientists, environmentalists, and common sense. All you have to do is look at Duterte, Bolsonaro, Trump, Johnson, Modi, etc to see that this is true.
What would a logical rational evidence based democracy look like?
“Leaders” like to hobnob with other “leaders”.
All progressive goals require legislation, and if progressives in Europe (or elsewhere) can help US voters elect progressives, that would be great. Otherwise, it’s just a way for “leaders” to feed their egos.
I think opening a progressive internationale is not a bad idea. But this group of well-known activists should form a “steering committee” in the sense of how of a Transition Town steering committee - in other words, they should serve as a temporary unifying force that plans its own demise as members use their renown and expertise to help initiate an international process.
Once international networks become more well established, they should fade back as a more inclusive, democratic framework takes over. Because many of them are able to effectively articulate messages, they can still serve as spokes-people, but their power should be transferred to others in the movement.
At least for the moment, my cynical heart is feeling just a wee bit gladdened by this…
We pessimists are never disappointed, but, as is the case here, are sometimes pleasantly surprised. (I’m a glass-half-full-of-Patron-reposado kind of guy.)
“A coalition of left-leaning thinkers, activists, organizations, and political leaders from around the world”
What’s missing? The workers.
True. Also, there are multiple members on the council from the Americas, Europe, South Asia. But from East Asia, home to the largest population of all of these areas, one Chinese guy is all that is represented. In other words, just another typical progressive organization excluding East Asians. Nothing new to see here for me (yawn).
I generally love your posts. But regarding this, if East Asian progressive activists do not exist or are thin on the ground, they cannot be confected out of thin air. I don’t know the situation on the ground in East Asia. Possibly, South Korea and Japan have a few. Perhaps Hong Kong. The PRC is so repressive that any progressives would have to be in exile like Ai Wei Wei.
It never stops amazing me how parochial and uninformed the American left is about what is going on abroad, including in left politics. As Mike Davis says, the current American left is the least internationalist left in decades. You do need to study this more as we all do. Here’s a start, from someone who’s been building solidarity for a long time in East Asia, Tim Shorrock.
The American left needs to expand relationships with South Korea. They have really vibrant unions, a really vibrant civil society. The large coalitions are really something. Americans on the Left ought to pay more attention to what’s going on there. I mean, here we are trying to get rid of a corrupt, racist president, and we have a lesson right in front of us in how to do it. It requires persistence and organizing, week after week, month after month.
“What would a logical rational evidence based democracy look like?”
Good question, my response is, we will never know until electronic voting is eliminated. Of the current “leaders” you listed, all but Johnson were “elected” in voting systems that use electronic vote tallying (Wikipedia). 4 out of five is too big of a coincidence for me to wrap my head around, that this was by chance, and not a major factor in these fascists’ gaining control.
We must all face the electoral music, the sooner the better - We are not going to vote ourselves out of this mess, the last two election cycles should be proof enough for those who deny this.
I like their rules for contributing:
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There exists a group called the World Socialist Movement, very different from the now myriad Trotskyist 4th Internationals and calling for radical social change unlike the Progressive International. Their website is well worth a look at
A famous East Asian who should fit nicely in this organization is Filipino environmentalist Yeb Sano. You may remember him from his stirring speech at 1 of the climate summits directing attention to devastation on island nations from ever more ravaging storms, and his long fast in another climate summit to protest the lack of action on climate.
Thank you for taking the time to reply. I would suggest that there are plenty of progressives who could have been recruited out of the nearly 1.5 billion inhabitants however.
can’t hurt to have a broad vision even if it is more of just a feel-good gesture at this point. Could use some emphasis on reducing military spending to help get needed resources, and settling disputes peacefully
Could be another requirement for contributing (wingsofadove, above).