The Revolution Will Not Be Actualized (Part 1): Republicans, Smarter Than Your Average Donkey (Again)
This is the first post in a series, The Revolution Will Not Be Actualized (RIP Gil Scott-Heron). This series is an evolving concept where I am discussing austerity policy and the movements against it. In the post What Is Austerity, I state that austerity is an economic policy that limits spending and eliminates public services with the purpose of reducing national budget deficits. The anti-austerity movements in Europe are very strong and have conducted general strikes in order to stop the austerity programs in their countries. These are very exciting times. However, we are not seeing the same kind of unrest in the United States. This series explores why.
Interesting article on the debt-ceiling debate. Unlike most of the alarmist presentations in the television media, AlterNet actually gathers information on the potential and current consequences of the debt-ceiling talks. The article argues that the debt-ceiling discussion is merely a ruse to force the collapse of downward wealth redistribution in favor of upward wealth extraction. This really is a serious strike against the major narratives in the television media.
It is clear that austerity measures are just beginning…
Democracy Now! provides an excellent report on the recent protests in Greece. This video is quality coverage of what is happening on the ground, with interviews from protesters themselves. After numerous protests and clashes with police over the last few months, the people went on a general strike last week. A basic summary is that the people have shut down the nation in protest of the prospective cuts to public services under the austerity policy. This policy serves to protect the financial market (and the Euro currency) by limiting the national government’s spending. I will continue to follow this story and have an in-depth feature in the coming weeks. #Solidarity. Orchestrated Pulse.
Austerity is an economic policy that limits spending and eliminates public services with the purpose of reducing national budget deficits. In the United States, the plans to reduce or eliminate social security, Medicaid, unemployment benefits, education funding, and other programs are examples of austerity policy in the United States. When the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank gave Latin American countries loans, austerity measures were stipulated, this forced austerity is known as structural adjustment. Therefore austerity in developing countries is often attached to neoliberalism.
In Bolivia, neoliberalism and its austere social model, were overthrown by the “Water War” that began in 2000. The “Water War” was a rebellion against privatizing the public water company. Privatization of the water system was an austerity measure because the public water company burdened the national debt and was an expensive service, so in an effort to reduce the deficit, the program was sacrificed.