by Henry A. Giroux Surveillance, in any land where it is ubiquitous and inescapable, generates distrust and divisions among its citizens, curbs their readiness to speak freely to each other, and diminishes their willingness to even dare to think freely. — Ariel Dorfman The revelations of whistle-blowers such as Chelsea Manning, Jeremy Hammond and Edward Snowden about government lawlessness and corporate spying provide a new meaning if not a revitalized urgency and relevance to George Orwell’s dystopian fable 1984. Orwell offered his readers an image of the modern state that had become dystopian — one in which privacy as a civil … Continue reading Totalitarian Paranoia in the Post-Orwellian Surveillance State
by Anjan Chakrabarti Last time the Indian economy ran into a major systemic crisis was in the late 1980s. It was a result of and also the final nail in the coffin of state sponsored planned economy. Along with the collapse of Soviet style command economies, it signalled the unsustainability of an economic system built on absolute or near total control of the state over the economy. That crisis helped spread the philosophy of neoliberalism in India which led to this lesson from the experience of centralized planning: for the goals of rapid economic growth and poverty reduction, state control … Continue reading The faltering miracle story of India and neoliberalism
by Henry A. Giroux Public education is under assault by a host of religious, economic, ideological and political fundamentalists. The most serious attack is being waged by advocates of neoliberalism, whose reform efforts focus narrowly on high-stakes testing, traditional texts and memorization drills. At the heart of this approach is an aggressive attempt to disinvest in public schools, replace them with charter schools, and remove state and federal governments completely from public education in order to allow education to be organized and administered by market-driven forces. Schools would “become simply another corporate asset bundled in credit default swaps,” valuable for … Continue reading Surviving neoliberalism
by Henry A. Giroux “For we already know that a worthwhile society will not be less but more free than our own. More instruction, more — and more precise — information, more concrete criticism, publicity given to the actual functioning of society and politics, all problems put in the most offensive terms — as offensive as suffering and as all true reasoning — here are the preliminary conditions for ‘transparent’ social relations.” — Merleau Ponty “It is certain, in any case, that ignorance, allied with power, is the most ferocious enemy justice can have.” — James Baldwin Four decades of … Continue reading The end of American Democracy?
by Peter McLaren I regret to inform my liberal friends and colleagues that we have moved well beyond the return of a progressive Keynesianism. That the domination of post–World War II economics by Fordism/Keynesianism is over (as the production of profit no longer relies upon the production of commodities and their sale) should not be a revelation to the most astute observers of the contemporary political scene who have been examining in minute detail the collapse of our capitalist universe. Their most grim prognosis tells us that we have nowhere to run and nowhere to hide. Either we slay the … Continue reading The death rattle of the American mind
by Dave Hill This is a revolutionary period in world history. The collapse of finance capitalism, the bankers’ bailouts across the globe, the continuing bankers’ bonuses, and the intrinsic problems of finance capitalism have, under current `bourgeois’ parliamentarist rule, resulted in ordinary families, workers and communities,`paying for the crisis’. All this, while the national and international capitalist classes and organisations impose austerity capitalism on a reeling public and public educational, social, health and welfare systems. This `austerity capitalism’ has led to an eruption of discontent-against political, economic and financial dictatorship, through the Arab Spring, the indignados in Spain, the Occupy … Continue reading Fighting neo-liberalism with education and activism
by Geoff Davies In the tropical forests of Central America are great stone temples and monuments, remnants of the Mayan civilisation that collapsed over a thousand years ago. We can never know exactly why the Mayan civilisation collapsed, but some of the main factors were probably shifting climate, over-exploitation of natural resources, warfare and internal rivalries. However a telling observation is that the grandest temples were built just before the final collapse. It is not uncommon that the grandest accomplishments of a past society came just before a precipitous decline. This pattern indicates the society was busy, right to the … Continue reading The Tao of economics
by David Harvey The historical geography of capitalist development is at a key inflexion point in which the geographical configurations of power are rapidly shifting at the very moment when the temporal dynamic is facing very serious constraints. Three percent compound growth (generally considered the minimum satisfactory growth rate for a healthy capitalist economy) is becoming less and less feasible to sustain without resort to all manner of fictions (such as those that have characterized asset markets and financial affairs over the last two decades). There are good reasons to believe that there is no alternative to a new global … Continue reading A co-revolutionary theory