“The division between profit-making and people-making points to a deep-seated tension at the heart of capitalist society. While capital strives systemically to increase profits, working-class people strive, conversely, to lead decent and meaningful lives as social beings. These are fundamentally irreconcilable goals, for capital’s share of accumulation can only increase at the expense of our share in the life of society. Social practices that nourish our lives at home, and social services that nurture our lives outside of it, constantly threaten to cut into profits. Thus, a financial drive to reduce those costs and an ideological drive to undermine such labors are endemic to the system as a whole”
- Arruzza, Bhattacharya, and Fraser, Feminism for the 99%: A Manifesto, page 71
Well, at least to pretend that I am traveling to Spain, France, and California through an assortment of rosé wines from my local state-owned and operated Fine Wines & Good Spirits. Indeed, all of the stores selling wine and spirits in the state of Pennsylvania are owned by the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board. Given that 50% of the profits in the alcohol industry are generated through retail sales, opponents of the state control of retail alcohol profits have been trying to force Pennsylvania to privatize the state-run wine and liquor stores for years. They have consistently failed.
it’s nice to know that every time I drink a glass of rosé, I am supporting the state budget of Pennsylvania!
For those of you interested in the works of Alexandra Kollontai and her views on sexuality, I finally finished reading the final part of her 1923 essay, "Make Way for Winged Eros: A Letter to Working Youth" for my A.K. 47 podcast. I’ll be discussing it in depth during my next episode, but make sure you listen to the whole essay before you listen to the discussion.
This explains the basic state of the dialogue about socialism in the United States right now.
One of my former students stumbled across this article in a Slovak-American newspaper in the archives at the University of Chicago. I love this quote: “[Socialists] maintain that freed from marital yoke and from oppression of male morality woman will develop and grow.”
Yep, pretty much…
This helpful table, provide by the White House Council of Economic Advisers (CEA) today, has convinced me finally that socialism would be a terrible idea. We might get health care, education, and public transport, but look how much more we will pay for owning a Ford pickup truck. It’s a slam du(mb)k argument.
I'm rereading Peter Singer's A Darwinian Left: Politics, Evolution and Cooperation. It's an old book (2000), but I find it a provocative little essay to help rethink the Marxist view of human nature. Can we evolve to be more cooperative? Are Darwinism and Marxism compatible? This is a wonderful little book for discussion groups.