This blog is dedicated to the destruction of capitalism in all its forms, and bringing about the long-delayed transition to direct democracy, human rights, and sustainable living for all the peoples of the Earth.
It is maintained and driven by a dangerous freak, a man given to fits of raving at his family, friends, and anyone unfortunate enough to be passing by. He is insane, but so what? The world is full of insane people, many of whom appear to function more or less normally. He does function, aside from those brief, glorious moments when he is fully engaged, and thinking that nothing would suit him better than to torch a few cop cars, smash a few windows, and then retire to brood over a few beers in some anonymous bar. So if he is a tad bit eccentric, forgive him. Because he is you.
Fellow Worker Nate Hawthorne from Twin Cities IWW was gracious enough to allow me to post the following, which sums up my views perfectly…
Do you really want to overthrow capitalism?
Someone asked one of us this question recently. The short answer is, yeah, we do. Our union’s constitution says that we want the workers to “take possession of the means of production” and “abolish the wage system.” We think capitalism is morally wrong. In our view, there is no such thing as fair capitalism or morally good capitalism — it’s like child abuse, child abuse is always wrong. Capitalism is always morally wrong.
Here’s what we mean. Did you ever think about why bosses and companies hire workers? The reason is that workers make things and perform services that the company sells. In general, employees make things or do stuff which employers charge other people a fee to purchase. Employers take in money by selling the goods and services that workers make. The money employers take in has to be more than they pay out in wages – otherwise they start to fire people. Why else would companies hire people? What this means is that workers make more money for employers than we get in wages. We think that’s wrong. Capitalist society is built around the idea that some people should profit off of others. We think that this is why there are so many people living in poverty right now at the same time that there are a few people with incredible wealth. In 2009 loads of working people lost their jobs, but the top 15 richest people on earth all got richer.
Part of why capitalism continues to exist is that we can’t get a lot of what we need and want unless we have money. Most of us can’t get money unless we work for someone else. This means our bosses have a lot of control over our lives. If we lose our jobs and can’t find new ones, we risk losing our homes, losing access to health care, let alone being able to spend money on the things we enjoy. Bosses know that if they fire us we won’t have an income anymore. Many bosses use this to push people around on the job. We basically give up our democratic rights on the job. We don’t have a right to free speech at work, for instance. The boss can tell us what to say and what not to say. We think that’s morally wrong too, and many of us find it emotionally intolerable too — we hate how it feels to get bossed around.
For us, all of this is a good reason to get rid of capitalism. Because we want to get rid of capitalism, some people compare us to dictatorships around the world that called themselves Communists. That’s not what we have in mind. We’re against dictatorships, and we want to point out that workers under dictatorships often have it the worst.
We want to replace capitalism with a world that is more democratic. When we organize on the job we are trying to change the balance of power. Usually the boss calls all the shots. We organize to make it so that the workers have a lot more input. Of course, we can only get so far with this because we still live in a capitalist society. In the long term we want to organize every workplace to make them all democratic. In our view, in a good society, all people would have democracy on the job, instead of leaving our rights at the door when we get to work like we do now.
In addition to democracy on the job, we’re for democracy off the job. We think that until all people have democracy at work, we can’t have real democracy in the rest of society. Think about how many hours most people spend at work, commuting to and from work, looking for a job, and thinking about work when off the clock. Work takes up a ton of our lives, and work in a capitalist society is undemocratic. With so much of our lives spent in undemocratic workplaces, how could we have real democracy in the rest of our lives?
We also think that all people should have their basic needs met – people should have enough food, and safe secure homes, access to medical care, some access to entertainment and the arts, and so on. We think it’s terrible that our society wastes so many resources on the lifestyles of a few super rich people while so many poor people go without the bare necessities. We think if we did away with capitalism this wastefulness would go away and there would be plenty for everyone.
This was written by Nate Hawthorne, a member of the Twin Cities
General Membership Branch of the IWW. He can be reached by email at crashcourse666[at]gmail.com. This piece was written in a personal capacity and only reflects the views of its author.”