J.R.’s Zaphne Blog News for 06-11-2018

Are You A Capitalist?

It seems that in our country today this idea has been drummed into us that anything that even remotely curtails capitalism is immediately labeled to be socialist or communist. That means unless you are prepared to accept this label, you must be a supporter of unobstructed capitalism. When asked if I am a capitalist I usually respond that I am a liberal capitalist. Recently the idea of compassionate capitalism has struck me as more accurately describing my economic beliefs. While there is no single definition, compassionate capitalism is fair capitalism; it is conscious capitalism; it is against the cut throat corporatism that we’ve seen increasing over the past few decades that seeks to outsources jobs, and cut wages and benefits of workers regardless of the profits line. 

Compassionate capitalism is for protecting worker’s rights to have fair and decent pay and benefits; it is for considering the environmental consequences of a business’ actions, and it is for a fair tax code that doesn’t allow those making the most money to pay a lower tax rate than those in the middle. The third element is conscious leadership, which is driven by purpose and by service to people, and not by power or by personal enrichment. Over the years, the thirst for greater and greater profits led many business leaders to put profits over people. So here we are, with CEOs making 400 hundred times the average worker when it used to be 10 or 20 times; we have workers taking pay and benefit cuts while CEOs get raises and even while profits increase. I just want to help offer the liberal capitalist an identity that isn’t between either extremes of communism and unobstructed capitalism. 

So when asked if I’m a capitalist, I’d say yes. You can call me a compassionate capitalist. 

Keywords: [“capitalism”,”capitalist”,”compassionate”]
Source: http://www.atheismandthecity.com/2012/11/are-you-capitalist.html

Today’s young adults want to redesign capitalism. But into what?

There’s growing evidence that today’s young adults, ranging in age from 18 to 29 or so, are strongly dissatisfied with other fundamental aspects of our political and economic system. Specifically, growing numbers are rejecting capitalism. This led us-a sociologist and an economist-to wonder how would young people redesign the economic system if they could. We first wanted to better understand how young people feel about the current economic system. So we started by examining a troubling 2016 Harvard University surveythat found that 51 percent of American youth aged 18 to 29 no longer support capitalism. 

A 2010 Gallup poll showed that only 38 percent of young people had a negative view of capitalism-and that was right after the worst financial and economic crisis since the Great Depression, which hit young people especially hard. A separate poll conducted in 2015 by conservative-leaning Reason-Rupe found that young adults ages 18 to 24 have a slightly more favorable view of socialism than capitalism. Their views contrast markedly with their older peers, who consistently tell pollsters they prefer capitalism by wide margins-more so as their age climbs. All the same, the data suggest that today’s young people are part of a vanguard of Americans losing faith in capitalism and ready to embrace something new. To us, this suggests the critical reason young people have lost faith in capitalism is that it has lost its ability to be fair. 

So these polls in a way suggest young people don’t want less capitalism, they want more of it. Just as lawmakers may want to rethink their views on gun rights, they may also want to begin re-examining their understanding of what capitalism is supposed to look like. 

Keywords: [“people”,”capitalism”,”young”]
Source: https://www.nationofchange.org/2018/04/07/todays-young-adults-want…

The Book of LifeThe Book of Life

On the other, self-flagellation, where we blame only ourselves, tear ourselves apart and constantly replay evidence of our waywardness and sheer stupidity. We have taken self-criticism too far when it no longer has any effect on our level of achievement, when it simply saps our morale and our will to get out of bed. We are aware that, by being kind to ourselves, we may over-indulge our undeserving characters, miss valuable insights and ruin our potential. Because depression and self-disgust are serious enemies too, we need to re-learn the value of calculated moments of self-compassion; we need to appreciate the role of self-care in a good, ambitious and fruitful life. We’re so in love with success, we fail to notice the scale of the challenges we routinely set ourselves. 

We are robbing ourselves of genuine and fair consolation by believing that we are entirely in control – and therefore entirely to blame when we crash. Those who loved you in childhood knew this and, in their best moments, helped you to feel it. Adopt a maternal relationship with yourself: rehearse the internalised voices of all those who have been kind to you, bathe in an intrinsic absolute love independent of achievement. Let yourself listen to voices you haven’t given time for in years. Perhaps it isn’t unconditional love, it’s just that there are other conditions for love, which you happen to pass quite well. 

You are kind, interesting, witty, sensitive, bold, imaginative Modern society has over-emphasised certain conditions for love, pegging them too neatly to a narrow range of victories. We have grown too good at giving the case to the prosecution. 

Keywords: [“love”,”ourselves”,”too”]
Source: https://www.theschooloflife.com/thebookoflife/a-self-compassion…

J.R.’s Zaphne Blog News for 01-31-2018

Late-stage capitalism: Denying the Imperium of Death

The emotional and physical pain, anxiety, and depression inflicted by the trauma inherent to a system sustained by perpetual exploitation has proven to be too much for a sizeable number of human beings to endure thus their need to self-medicate. The tormented landscape, besieged by an ad hoc assemblage of late capitalist structures, emporiums of usurped longing, reflects the desperate, rapacious nature of late capitalist imperium. The forces in play impose a colonizing effect upon the mind; therefore, a large percent of the afflicted have lost the ability to detect the hyper-entropic system’s ravaging effects. Stranded among the commercial come-ons and hyper-authoritarianism inherent to late-stage capitalism’s imperium of death, the human psyche, like the biosphere of our planet, subjected, at present, to humankind-wrought ecocide, has begun to display the terrible beauty of a nightmare. Conditions will grow increasingly inhospitable in regard to the flourishing of inner life, personal and collective thus will continue, and at accelerating rates, to be reflected in the web of phenomena we know as human culture. I’ve known, over the years, hundreds of human beings, born into and ensnared by the crime against humanity known as poverty, broken by the culture of greed and social degradation, and blamed by the clueless and the callous for the tragic trajectory in which impersonal fate and the wounding culture, by no fault of their own, has placed them. Truth is the system, a hierarchy of ghouls, is maintained by harvesting the corpses of the powerless, by means of imperial slaughter and domestic, economic exploitation. The system’s psychopathic beneficiaries, in particular, are aware of the reality. Moreover the beneficiaries of the system promote the lie that shame should be the exclusive dominion of those broken by their system, a system, which is, in essence, a form of government-sanctioned gangsterism, by which they, the ruthless few, and they alone, benefit. We human beings, as a species, have arrived at a profound point of demarcation: paradigm shift or perish. The victims of drug overdoses and, in general, the large and rising, without precedent, untimely deaths of middle-aged, laboring-class people should be regarded as canaries in the coal mines of the late-stage capitalist order, an augury of calamities that loom due to the exponentially increasing harm being inflicted upon both humanity and environmental forces crucial to sustaining the continued viability of the human race. If reality is met head-on, if empire, external and its inner analog, is renounced and challenged, then a liberation staged by the heart’s partisans can begin, thereby freeing up a great amount of acreage – a fructifying landscape – wherein both the earth’s ecosystem and the architecture of human desire can begin to co-exist and cross-pollinate thus a crucial re-visioning of oneself and the culture can begin.

Keywords: [“system”,”human”,”being”]
Source: http://www.mintpressnews.com/late-stage-capitalism-denying-the-imperium…

ยป Privilege & Oppression, Conflict & Compassion The Sociological Imagination

Now, most of our friends and colleagues have chosen to side with Jin Haritaworn in this conflict and with other critics of racial hierarchies within LGBT politics in other similar conflicts. Compassionate CommunicationOur preference in these kinds of conflicts, in general, has been to ask how such conflicts grow and how they might be resolved. We come to this as people who have practised, thought, and written about conflict, and who have some ideas, informed mainly by social constructionism, Buddhist philosophy, queer/anarchism & nonviolent communication, about what we regard as an ethical and effective way of approaching conflict. Our position on conflict resolution has, thus far, been as follows: that pretty much whatever the conflict, it is likely that both parties involved believe that they are right and that the other party is wrong. We certainly notice this pattern in the conflict mentioned previously. If the initial conflict involved discrimination, X-phobia or X-normativity, then does the equalising ‘we are all human and prone to managing conflict badly’ approach dismiss the existence of such power hierarchies and oppressive acts? There is also the extremely difficult question of where we position ourselves when the conflict is between other people or groups and we are called upon – or feel we would like to act as – mediators or advisers about potential ways of engaging. It is possible that – perhaps particularly if we are seen to share the privileged position of the ‘more powerful’ party – any attempt by us to help resolve the conflict can act as a further act of dismissal, rejection, or oppression of the ‘wronged’ party. Are we drawn to resolution in order to avoid acknowledging our own privilege? Do we simply find it painful to watch potential allies fighting and want peace? When does desire to resolve conflict stems from compassion and an ethical hope to decrease discrimination and conflict through mutual understanding, and when does it stems from cowardice and a defensiveness about our own possible privileges and problematic prejudices? Again, this is part of a compassionate opening to how it might be for those on the other ‘side’ of the conflict, and – more pragmatically – to consideration of what might work best in terms of changing the behaviours which we find so problematic. When we are the ones being accused, or called upon to mediate, we can notice in ourselves perhaps our aversion to conflict, the attraction to quickly close it down in ways which may leave important things unsaid or shift the blame, our defensiveness and fears that some problematic inner truth about ourselves may be laid bare if we continue to engage. We can encourage ourselves to remember the last such conflict when we ourselves were feeling excluded, marginalised and oppressed, and how important it was then for us to have a voice, to have our rage recognised, and to be listened to.

Keywords: [“conflict”,”oppression”,”ourselves”]
Source: http://sociologicalimagination.org/archives/6520