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  • The only way to pressure the Democrats from the left is by organizing a effective third party. The only way. The other way, working from within, will continue failing. Because the Democrats will certainly not have it. They cant afford to annoy Corporate America – their owners – with populist policies. This should be clear by now. It seemed clear enough already in 2010. Its now 2012. Maybe time to stop talking about it and start doing it?

  • swede commented on the blog post On Ron Paul and Progressivism

    2011-12-29 04:18:48View | Delete

    It would be suicide for the progressive left to get behind a candidate like Ron Paul that – if he wins – would slaughter whats left of the social security net, environmental protection laws, etc. The fact that some progressives are even toying with the idea is a bleak statement of political desperation. Why is the focus even on republican candidates on a progressive blog like FDL? Why not investigate the progressive contenders like Rocky Anderson, green party candidates, etc? Why pretend that the two-that-are-one-party-system will ever offer you any alternatives worth considering?

  • swede commented on the blog post Merkel, Sarkozy Agree on Fiscal Consolidation for Europe

    2011-12-05 14:02:06View | Delete

    This is really really REALLY bad news for us over here in Europe. Hopefully they will not be able to jam this through. Shock doctrine in play, you got that right! I dont for a second believe that these guys really have any illusions about what will be the outcome of more austerity. Economic recovery is not their aim. This is class war and the rich enjoy the advantage of the european institutions created by Europes neoliberal right to accomplish just these aims.

  • swede commented on the blog post 61% Favor Idea of an Independent Presidential Candidate Running

    2011-11-02 16:47:21View | Delete

    Wrong party won. Compare with Iceland, there the real left won, and the austerity agenda ended.

  • swede commented on the blog post Multiple Reports Say Gadhafi Captured in Libya, Possibly Killed

    2011-10-20 12:00:07View | Delete

    They will use it well – to reward the U.S. and NATO powers for enabling the removal of Qadhafi, that would otherwise have taken years or would never have occurred at all.

    I always wanted a magic crystal ball, can i have yours when youre finished?

  • swede commented on the blog post Multiple Reports Say Gadhafi Captured in Libya, Possibly Killed

    2011-10-20 10:44:25View | Delete

    But if you asked Libya if they were willing to put up with more than 100K dead, mostly innocent civilians, to get rid of Mo what do you think the vote would have been?

    The libyans interviewed, for example on Democracy Now – hardly mainstream media – have repeatedly said they are prepared to sacrifice what it takes. That said, i dont know where you got the number from. Its far higher than what ive heard so far. Of course, if Muammar hadnt sent his military against civilians in the first place, not a drop of blood had needed to be shed. The rason Libya did not develop like Egypt and Tunisia is not that Khadaffi was more popular. Rather he was more brutal and unrestrained.

    I for one am glad for the libyans, and they seem quite happy themselves from the scenes ive seen so far on the TV. Now they have a chance, lets hope they use it well!

  • What i hope can come out of this new movement is a healthy critical perspective on economic power. As we have all been royally fucked over by big business and Wall Street the last 20-30 years or so, its about time we start discussing alternatives. Its interesting that George Orwell was brought into the debate: I believe the kind of socialism he saw and defened with his life in Catalunya, decentralised, antiauthoritarian, fundamentally democratic, is our best bet for the future. It will allow us to combine the best of capitalism (market pricing on commodities) with democratically goberned economic instituetions and work places!

  • The results you see are the results of corruption, not of capitalism. Every and any system is susceptible to corruption. I oppose corruption wherever it occurs. I also oppose ideological fanaticism wherever it occurs.

    Its not that simple. Corruption, sure. But capitalism tends to give the monied elites all the power they need to corrupt any and everyone. Too much money and economic resources in the hands of the few creates its own field of gravity, so to speak, that distorts the world around it. Its not an issue of legality. Goldman Sachs will alweays wield too much power, as will the Koch Brothers, even if they are prevented to outright break the laws. Capitalists will always wield too much power, as long as they are guaranteed ownership of the economy.

    As for fanaticism, ill stand with you on the barrivaces opposing it. But we really need to start discussing capitalism and alternative models of economic organization. And i dont see much ideological fanaticism in this thread, just people asking the right questions. I think George Orwell (dont know why you brought up the Animal farm earlier but its an excellent book!) would have appropved 100%.

  • Yeah, Greece is really an icon of socialism, full of tax-evading millionaires. But strangely it was a rightist government what cooked the books. And the new so called socialists are being armstwisted to impose the most destructive austerity-measures one can imagine.

    You really are deluded in so many ways. You see some of the problems, and manage to draw all the wrong conclusions. Another triumph for the great american indoctrination system.

  • Why do you equate trade with capitalism? Every economy that ever existed has traded in some way or the other. Capitalism means rather that the big businesses and banks, the real economic power , remains in the hands of big capital. I see some here saying “capitalism is not the problem”, and i think, there exactly is our problem, that some still, amidts all this mess, cant identify the real problem. Capitalism gives disproportionate economic power to a select few, we can call them the one percent. The results of this unbalance should be too obvious by now to have to repeat. And until a real peoples power mowement springs up to challenge capital, things will never change. I sincerely hope Occupy Wall Street is it, we dont have much time.

  • Also Jane is you are friends with Michael Moore he needs some serious education. Capitalism is not the problem. We do not have capitalism we have a criminal monopoly system and that needs to end. As does our fake democracy

    You know that capitalism breeds monopolies right? And capitalism most definitely is the problem youre facing. Excellent demands suggested by the occupiers. Most of them incidentally going after capital and capitalists. You may not like the left, but the left sure will like you. The real left that is. Not the slighty-less-extreme-right-then-republicans democrats.

  • swede commented on the blog post Bernie Sanders to Primary Obama? Don’t Make Me Laugh

    2011-08-01 05:41:42View | Delete

    I agree! Why the defeatism? And why not add the american people to the list of sell-outs then? Over here in Europe, when politicians and corporations go after the welfare state they get massive push-back from the streets. The people let them know there will be a political cost to corporatism by showing up in the streets and bringing the country to its knees, greek-style. Whats the american response? Letting off some steam at FDL or a similar radical blog, and then what?

    Where were the angry, concerned ordinary americans in the health care debate? Where were the unions? Dont look to one or two politicians and expect miracles. OK, maybe theyre not the leaders you need. But the response has to come from the street: massive organizing! And bring forth alternatives then, find a positiva cause to channel all that anger into. I find it amazing that you guys still havent agreed on what third party to get behind in the next election, and started building some momentum in that direction. Anger alone wont save you, organization could.

  • swede commented on the blog post Pull Up a Chair

    2011-07-16 15:12:49View | Delete

    However, theoretical socialism is not how real socialism has played out.

    I would add that the opponents managed to destroy the most promising socialist experiments, like the spanish republic, Allendes Chile, etc. What was left to straggle on was authoritarian communism and a western social democracy that soon lost any intentions of realizing anything remotely like socialism.

  • swede commented on the blog post Pull Up a Chair

    2011-07-16 14:18:07View | Delete

    I think its important to point out that socialism does not necesarily equal planned economics Soviet style, where every important economic decision is taken by the state. That model is really a perversion of the original concept.

    The early socialist ideas of how to organize the economy was geared towards cooperatives, giving the workers power over the fruits of their labour, instead of letting the capitalists exploit their labour. An important part of marxis economic theory centers around the concept of profit and capitalist exploitation, how the workers never get paid for the full amount of work that they put in, since the capitalist always keeps a part of the profit for himself.

    In Marx wiew, the capitalists will always seek to maximize the profit quota, pressing down wages and other expenses, which will eventually lead capitalism towards its own extinction, creating economic havoc.

    Anyway, so democracy in the workplace, economic democracy, is a fundamental part of socialism. And also the striving towards a more egalitarian society, a class struggle. But class struggle is not a exclusively socialist concept. The economic elites in capitalist societies are even more class conscious, “vulgar marxists but in reverse” as Noam Chomsky calls them. A lot (or all!) of the problems we face today i would attribute to the success of these uber class conscious classwarfaring economical elites. And if the socialist response had not become so diluted, and the working class so confused by all the rightwing propaganda lies, things would not look so bleak.

    And i would add that whats missing in the american political arena is an effective socialist movement. Instead you look to Obama and the liberals, often cursing them for being just what they are; corporate whores who will feel sorry for screwing you over, unlike conservatives, (but will screw you ovcer nonetheless) and wishing them to be what they will never be; strong reformers with fires in their ellies.

    Well, if you look at american history, youll see that the only times liberals ever acted with some backbone was when they got pushed hard from the left. Then they had enough leeway from their corporate masters to throw the working class a few bones. If left alone, the reformist instinct would not arise in a typical liberal in a million years.

  • swede commented on the diary post Assange Accuser Worked with US-Funded, CIA-Tied Anti-Castro Group by Kirk James Murphy, M.D..

    2010-12-06 05:14:41View | Delete

    Unfortunately the “USA is great gig” plays for a bigger audience than just the elites. The normal condition here is pro-americanism, all the way. If the US does something horrendously stupid, like invade Irak or bomb Vietnam back to the middle ages, that might shift temporarily. But us swedes just cant get enough of american [...]

  • swede commented on the diary post Assange Accuser Worked with US-Funded, CIA-Tied Anti-Castro Group by Kirk James Murphy, M.D..

    2010-12-06 04:45:21View | Delete

    Well yes, our elites are quite nasty. The cables has revealed more of their servile mindset towards the US than most swedes probably would have imagined. And its not only the centerright government – the social dems are in on it too. But on the other hand i doubt that the authoritarian mindset is more [...]

  • swede commented on the diary post Assange Accuser Worked with US-Funded, CIA-Tied Anti-Castro Group by Kirk James Murphy, M.D..

    2010-12-06 04:41:32View | Delete

    I somewhat agree with ralphbon, the links with cuban groups could be significant or could be a red herring. Best not to make too much of it before we know more. If this is a CIA honey trap, its pretty sloppily made. Maybe its simpler than that: the two women got jealous when they found [...]

  • swede commented on the diary post Assange Accuser Worked with US-Funded, CIA-Tied Anti-Castro Group by Kirk James Murphy, M.D..

    2010-12-06 02:20:47View | Delete

    As a swede i must say this is pretty embarassing. Just to clarify though: having consensual sex without a condom is not a punishable offence by any means. The case against Assange is – as far as we have understood, details are sketchy – that consensual sex turned nonconsensual after the condom broke/was taken off. [...]

  • History has taught us that those who heed the cry “socialism” in these times of change in our nation are regarded as persons with limited foresight by the generations to come.

    Or maybe history could teach you that the New Deal never would have gotten off the ground if not for the massive socialist organising at the time, forcing the liberals to muscle up some real strenght. The same could be said about the civil rights gains of the sixties, right? And maybe history can teach you that countries with strong socialist or social democratic parties achieved universal health care generations ago.

    I firmly believe that the US will not get back on a progressive track until a new socialist/left populist movement gets organized and starts to apply some serious pressure. Liberals will never be very good at class warfare. They lack both spine and motivation. Socialists and conservatives know how to do it.