Envirologue by Dave Hansford

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Envirologue: The Cry of the Indignados – Forcing Change

16 Responses

  • Bart Janssen,

    The highest-paid director at MC can earn, by regulation, no more than 6.5 times what the lowest-paid workers take home.

    Last time our PSA agreement came up for renegotiation I suggested we ask that no employee be paid more than 15 times the salary of the lowest paid staff member. At that time our CEOs salary would have just fit into that restriction.

    The proposal went out to members to be voted on. The staff rejected the proposal.

    Sometimes people are hard to understand.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4451 posts Report Reply

  • Kumara Republic,

    All the above examples of the 'indignados' followed a bubble burst in one form or another. We're still to have our turn yet, so the prevailing mood is that of Nero strumming his lyre.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 5416 posts Report Reply

  • andin,

    Fullerton says the answers lie among an open appraisal of them all, drawing on the best elements of each.

    Great post, it's the sort of post that needs to be read widely. But before we get to this point of open appraisal...
    Humanity is drowning in its own centuries old bullshit. Some need to sort thru a lot of that first. Whether enmasse we can change course is doubtful. Just ask the fredster, cause those are the minds that need to be enlightened and quickly!

    raglan • Since Mar 2007 • 1881 posts Report Reply

  • Dave Hansford, in reply to andin,

    Whether enmasse we can change course is doubtful

    Andin: whether en masse we can change course is in no doubt whatsoever. Indeed: it's the power elite's greatest fear. As I said: we just have to want it badly enough... I've lately returned from living in France, where they know only too well what it's like to be invaded, to be oppressed, to be violated.

    We like to poke fun at the French for being insular, parochial, but what we mistake for arrogance is just them declaring "never again." That's why they set fire to cars. That's why they choke the Champs Elysees with tractors. That's why they strike at the drop of a hat. They know what they stand for. More importantly, they know what they WILL NOT stand for. Much like the Spanish – more precisely, the Catalans. New Zealand has yet to arrive at that point of critical mobilisation, because frankly, we've had it so sweet for so long here, we don't recognise what's at stake, what's being done to us. Maōri, on the other hand, know only too well...

    Nelson • Since Apr 2008 • 28 posts Report Reply

  • andin,

    I bow to your greater knowledge on the subject. Many thanks
    I despair that here in NZ some dont take this as seriously as it should be.

    raglan • Since Mar 2007 • 1881 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    Maimai Vice...

    a new understanding that Nature must be more than a vending machine – we must enter a respectful partnership

    and then there's pricks like this:

    What about the shooting of animals?
    Tipple's faith keeps him from worrying too much about the ethics.
    "I'm a Christian and I think animals were put on Earth for man," he says. "I don't have any issue about that."

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7887 posts Report Reply

  • Dave Hansford, in reply to andin,

    I despair that here in NZ some dont take this as seriously as it should be

    You got this excruciatingly right.

    I don't pretend for a moment to any greater knowledge than anyone else, Andin. But I notice things, and they tend to get stuck... If I have any acute perception at all, it's an acuity for what really fucks me right off...

    Nelson • Since Apr 2008 • 28 posts Report Reply

  • Amanda Wreckonwith, in reply to Dave Hansford,

    where they know only too well what it's like to be invaded, to be oppressed, to be violated.

    I think you'll find that they did quite a lot of that themselves. You just have to delve further back in history.

    insular, parochial, but what we mistake for arrogance is just them declaring "never again." That's why they set fire to cars.

    Which "never again"? - Monarchy? Revolution? WW1? WW2?

    You really should mention the rural peasant population of France if you want people to understand their 'aux armes' attitude. 'Water our soil with the blood of our enemies' has a lovely ring to it

    More importantly, they know what they WILL NOT stand for.

    Algerians? Moroccans? Romanians?

    The rise of the far right is far more pronounced in Europe than any failed movement such as Occupy. The dismantling of the capitalist status quo may not be as smooth a process as you wish for... There are many lessons to be learned from European history.

    Since Sep 2012 • 171 posts Report Reply

  • Dave Hansford, in reply to Amanda Wreckonwith,

    That's true. There's an ugly side to French social politics, as there is in any society. But if you check the French jugular, you'll find a bounding pulse. That's a product of both healthy stimulants and harmful intoxicants. But at least they FEEL something, demand some say in their fate. They don't simply sit passively in the yards, waiting to be mustered unquestioningly into the works.

    Nelson • Since Apr 2008 • 28 posts Report Reply

  • Katharine Moody,

    I think in the US anyway - this is the lady who will make the difference;

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-05-05/why-elizabeth-warren-makes-wall-street-tremble

    Wellington • Since Sep 2014 • 798 posts Report Reply

  • Ross Clark,

    A good article – and it is rewarding to see reasoned and polite responses unlike which appear to dominate other sites

    Northland • Since Apr 2015 • 3 posts Report Reply

  • TracyMac,

    Good article in the main, but boy, am I amazingly tired of 3D printers being held up as a liberating force. They do not scale, yet. What they can make is limited (although some people have great ideas).

    But even when their limits are solved, I fail to see how they are any different to any other means of production. Yes, if there is going to be any kind of economic revolution, the workers will have to be able to manage the latest technology.

    The internet was hailed as a liberating force as well, but no, it's simply a great communications medium, and like any technology, can be used for both good and bad or indifferent, by anyone with the means to control it.

    Maybe 3D printing is appealing because they are currently small devices that can be controlled by small numbers of people. So how do you scale up the current craft use for entire communities, much less countries?

    I can't see any economic revolution working without some aspects of industrial/mass production. Which Mondragon actually manage, as do some factory co-ops in South America. So please, let's not just focus on cute techno-toys when discussing production in alternative economies.

    (Caveat - I'm not focussing on a Marxian "all production happens in factories". Technological change has given us huge amounts of automation. Which I think is great in terms of saving labour, but not for undermining the value of the labour that remains. I don't know what Marx's approach to that would be, combined with the fact that industrial production has mostly been exported to cheap-labour countries.)

    Canberra, West Island • Since Nov 2006 • 701 posts Report Reply

  • steven crawford, in reply to TracyMac,

    But even when their limits are solved, I fail to see how they are any different to any other means of production.

    You don’t have to make multiple part moulds, or worry about rebates. What most people are seeing are plastic extrusion printers. Which are basicly toys. Lazer sintering has resently come out of copyright, so interesting things are going start happening there. Sintering can print things like titanium. And there are large scale concrete extruding printers, which can do things like build buildings that are currently impractical. The concrete printers can replicate coral reefs, for conservation purposes. Then you have medical 3d printing, that can print scaffolds for you new liver, if you should need a transplant. Most importantly, these tools are becoming economic for people in relatively poor countries to build, or buy. It’s early days yet, but I am optimistic about these technologies. I think they can revolutionize our economy’s.

    And I agree. 3d printers are over rated. They are but one tool, in the famely of CNC technology,

    Atlantis • Since Nov 2006 • 4310 posts Report Reply

  • tussock,

    The "tweaked capitalism" version of most of that involves relatively few steps.

    1) Externalities must be taxed, and very heavily, such that not having any is always profitable. Which is to say, always clean up your own mess, or pay much more than is needed for someone else to at a profit.

    2) Compulsory Unions, damn it all. One workplace, one workforce, end of story. This idea of handing labour laws to the state for eternal protection has lead to us having almost no labour laws worth the name, with unions forbidden from doing anything about it.

    3) ACC and other universal insurance systems that are big enough to go after dangerous employers and win. Universal health and education the same way, take the cranks out of the major press at least.

    4) Abundant solar electricity. It is maddening that I live in a country whose government is actively preventing the adoption of this abundance to produce an artificial scarcity of power to keep prices high.


    I keep hitting on solar electric, but it's century old technology that has barely been touched for 80 years. With the push from China the price of production is now falling by 50% every two years. I don't think many people really get what that means.

    We live in a society where the average person has the power of 25 others through burning fossil fuels, but the future is where the average person has the power of 25,000 others through collecting solar power.

    Capitalism can surely survive the state providing it with abundant near-free power just as easily as it survives free education, roads, justice, and everything else we benefit by choosing not to make people pay for it (or at least only a token amount).

    Imagine using 100 times as much power and having a bill of $20 per annum for it, with zero pollution, that's what people should have in 50 years time. Capitalism would thrive.

    Since Nov 2006 • 607 posts Report Reply

  • steven crawford,

    Atlantis • Since Nov 2006 • 4310 posts Report Reply

  • steven crawford,

    Attachment

    Conventional screen printed solar panels grid.

    Atlantis • Since Nov 2006 • 4310 posts Report Reply

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