Walking the Talk – 100+ Ways To Make A Difference
Over the years I have been deeply involved in fund raising, community development and what I call compassionate capitalism. Over the years I have witnessed a darker side of capitalism. As long as it doesn’t effect the bottom line it is blind to the environmental or community consequences due to their business. The time has come to call for action, to call for “Compassionate capitalism.” Already on the horizon are ground breaking books like, The Divine Right of Capital that promotes the dethroning of corporate aristocracy for what Marjorie Kelly calls Economic Democracy; or Bill Jensen’s book, Work 2.0, which calls for new labor contracts and the realignment of corporate assets. Perhaps we are better off calling for “Compassionate capitalists.” Patricia Panchak, Editor-n-Chief, of Industry Week pointed out in her March 2002 editorial, Capitalism At A Crossroad?, that according to a 2000 Business Week/Harris poll, when people were give a choice between the two phrases that they supported more strongly: “Corporations should have only one purpose – to make the most profit for their shareholders – and pursuit of that goal will be best for America in the long run.” -or- “Corporations should have more than one purpose. They also owe something to their workers and the communities in which they operate, and they should sometimes sacrifice some profit for the sake of making things better for their workers and communities.” – 95% percent of those surveyed choose the latter statement. Today there are great disparities among communities. The communities are broken down; they are without hope and have great need. In the Old Testament when Jerusalem was in ruins, Nehemiah heard the call of God to do something about it.
Why Compassion Is Hard – The Next Step
Compassion underlies all world religions, most boldly embodied in the provocation “Love your enemies as you do yourself.” Yet in a world of violence and hatred, where people sleep in the streets of our wealthiest cities, it seems compassion is in short supply. At a time of year when we tend to dream of world peace, and to that end, guilt ourselves and others into being nicer, it’s rare that we spend time truly understanding compassion. Is compassion an innate behavior, or one that you learn?Why is it hard to show strangers compassion?How can we be more compassionate in our daily lives? Robert Wright, a journalist and philosopher and author of several books on the biology of compassion, sees compassion as a natural process of evolution. “It happened through a principle known as kin selection. And the basic idea of kin selection is that, if an animal feels compassion for a close relative, and this compassion leads the animal to help the relative,then, in the end, the compassion actually winds up helping the genes. underlying the compassion itself.” Expanding compassion is the life’s work of Karen Armstrong, religious thinker and author of “12 Steps to a More Compassion Life”. Kristen Armstrong compiled a life’s work in compassion into a simple, 12-step book aimed at promoting compassion around the globe. Our failure to show compassion to others with whom we disagree causes political logjams, abuse of power, and otherwise childish behaviors that often cause in harm to each other and our environment. Finding compassion in times of disagreement may be more challenging, but the rewards are far greater. As compassion grows among us, and the barriers between human communities are torn down, the result will be more peace.
War = Capitalism, Capitalism = War by William Bowles – Dandelion Salad
Crisis is capitalism’s middle name and, as in the past, crisis leads to war, major wars and indeed lotsa ‘little’ ones too. I don’t think you need a crystal ball to figure out that capitalism is headed down the major war path, it’s displaying all the same pathological signs as it has done in past decades; economic crisis, economic collapse, repression abroad and repression at home. War, better still, general war solves all of these problems, for the capitalist class that is. Pax Americana! Rule Britannia! It’s the ultimate end-product of industrialising war, just as capitalism has industrialised everything else and trashed the planet in the process. So what is stopping us from stopping them? Is it because we’re as suicidal and as shortsighted as the ruling class is? Like all honest socialists, I’m an optimist, I like to think that we are different from our rulers, that people are being misled, lied to, hooked on addiction to things by the all-devouring monster that is capitalism. Of course it’s extremely dangerous to draw direct analogies with the past but the common thread is capitalism, so you have to draw the obvious conclusion don’t you? Well don’t you? How can you escape the obvious when a man called Donald Trump heads up the most powerful, the most destructive society in all of history. The choice is yours and in a really bizarre, nay abhorrent way, perhaps we do have to thank Donald Trump, for he has surely and finally revealed to us the true nature of capitalism in all its horrific barbarism. For Trump is no aberration, he is capitalism personified, just as Hitler’s Germany was brute force capitalism. A shot across the bows of capitalism but no more than that. First we need a viable programme upon which to base our alternative to capitalism.