Thursday, December 13, 2007

Our Problems are Artificial

Many, if not most people treat the problems we face as though they were a force of nature. Something inevitable, inexplicable, something that "just happens" or "has always been." Think of how poverty in the "Third World" is dealt with – when it is considered at all – "Here is $20 for Oxfam, poor devils, can't do much else." But Third World poverty did not fall out of the skies, it is the result of avoidable practices such as an the imposition of large-scale crop exportation rather than emphasizing local food crops, unwillingness to support the institution of land reform, the education of women and birth control. And the solutions to overcoming the worst of this poverty – providing everyone with potable water, decent living quarters, education and basic medicine, would cost only a fraction of the wealth squandered on military nonsense.

Homelessness did not exist back when rents were cheap and such housing plentiful. Nor is the solution to it any great mystery waiting for some povertycrat Einstein to reveal its resolution. Take basic housing out of the corporate "market." Use a fraction of the wealth wasted on idiocies like the Olympics or other forms of corporate welfare and apply it to building housing coops. Eliminate by-laws that restrict the building of basement suites and back-yard cottages. Drug addiction? Only a crime-causing problem in a system that is so criminal and/or stupid to treat addiction as a crime instead of a medical/social problem. Unemployment? Only a curse in a system that refuses to guarantee employment or income to its work force and is criminal enough to treat a problem of political economy as an individual problem. (As though it was the workers fault the plant closed and moved to China!)

I could go on and on but I think you get the point. Virtually every major problem humanity faces is artificial and solvable. These problems and the failures to resolve them are the result of deliberate choices made by the minority that holds political and economic power over us.

That our problems are artificial in nature is something very positive. It means the possibility exists for overcoming them if we have the intelligence and will to do so. Were our problems rigidly determined, like a force of nature, our situation would be hopeless. That they are the result of choices on the part of the powerful means they could be overcome and permanently resolved if we can eliminate the authoritarian and undemocratic structure that allows a small parasitic minority to dictate how we should live.

One of the ways the minority dominates us is to convince us that our problems are natural and irresolvable. Part of our struggle must be to break the hold upon the populace of this mentality.

9 Comments:

Blogger Renegade Eye said...

I agree with every word.

1:01 PM  
OpenID lfetimes said...

Well said and so true. I don't have much hope, though, of overcoming the power and greed that maintains the status quo.

8:02 AM  
Blogger Graeme said...

I agree 100 percent as well. Poverty is created.

2:02 PM  
Blogger Zhu said...

I agree and it pisses me off. It's like "they" are supposed to be poor, and "we" are supposed to be rich.

Same here in Western countries... I mean, in France, the President (elected idiot) basically explained to people they have to work more to make more. Gee. People aren't unemployed just because they are lazy bastards...

3:30 PM  
Blogger Zhu said...

I do all that (seriously!) and it helps a lot. :$

3:30 PM  
Blogger Renegade Eye said...

See this. Evan Greer is an anarchist.

7:43 PM  
Blogger Larry Gambone said...

Thanks for the tip! And he digs all the right people, Phil Ochs, Ani DiFranco, The Clash, Woody Guthrie etc...

10:01 PM  
Blogger Rosemarie Buchanan said...

Hey Larry ... thanks for your feedback on my blog!

I must be an anarchist lace knitter (there should be a button for my blog, eh?). I'm nearly 53 years old and have believed for decades in the "artificialness" of the economy, unemployment, homelessness, drug addiction, etc. etc.

I'll be back to visit your blog, that's for sure!

Rosemarie Buchanan, the Anarchist Lace Knitter (man, that MUST be some kind of oxymoron!), on Vancouver Island.

11:07 PM  
Blogger Rosemarie Buchanan said...

Hey Larry, me again.

I think there is a small piece of Beaufort Mountain Range that separates us (literally).

My email:
rosemarie.buchanan@gmail.com

We're in your city once or twice a month ... let's do coffee (organic and fair trade, of course ;-)

Rosemarie

12:07 AM  

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