We cannot rely on the government to fix our economic problems

by Nick Andrea

We can no longer rely on a strong centralized government to solve our economic problems. Legislation has not solved these problems and, arguably, has made them worse. Moreover, our government is compromised to large special interests at this point, thanks to the Supreme Court. So, we have to take matters into our own hands at a local and cultural level level.

First, we should keep the free market relatively unregulated, especially for small businesses. The only roles for legislation in a free market are to make sure businesses are selling safe products and services, and to make sure they’re not cheating, such as price fixing. Lest it become a free for all for large businesses, however, the sword must cut both ways. We need to remove corporate personhood so that actual, not fictitious, humans bear the consequences of corporate actions.

Next, we should alter out purchasing habits and compensation schemes. Where possible, stop supporting hierarchical businesses where the salary ratio of CEO to average worker is 354:1 (http://www.aflcio.org/Corporate-Watch/CEO-Pay-and-You/CEO-to-Worker-Pay-Gap-in-the-United-States/Pay-Gaps-in-the-World). Instead, support more cooperative enterprises that pay all their employees living wages and profit share or put profits back into the community, in the form of community gardens, low-cost fitness and health centers, and drum dojos for youth, to name a few.

I feel this view balances the best of individualist and collectivist values. We preserve freedom through the free market, allowing individuals to express themselves creatively in business. And, we balance that with collectivist values since the healthiest systems in nature are collaborative. This is the piece that, out of fear of becoming a communist nation, has been missing from the American marketplace for too long. But, sharing equitably from the grassroots level and making sure everyone has enough is not communism, it’s sustainability.

I’m no statistician. I won’t argue about numbers. I can say, however, that this ship is on a collision course with doom and I don’t want to see that happen. So, it’s time for a values shift. It’s up to you and me. Where will you buy your groceries this weekend?

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About NickAndrea19

My goal has always been and continues to be the liberation of minds, my own and what influence I may have on others, to perceive the extraordinary beauty all around us. To this end, I write, play music, and design websites. Don't hesitate to contact me for more information about any of these activities. :)
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One Response to We cannot rely on the government to fix our economic problems

  1. Bill Walz says:

    Everything you say is good – AND – we must realize that “a government for the people, by the people and of the people” is what we are intended to be. To look only to grassroots efforts separated from governmental politics is like addressing racism without The Civil Rights Act, or addressing sexism without governmental legislation outlawing it in the employment and education sectors, or environmental degradation without the Clean Air and Water Acts, or poverty without Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, minimum wage, Head Start, etc.
    Successful undermining of these efforts, these laws, and these agencies has occurred by very skillful right-wing and corporate concentration on taking over the apparatus of government. Those who believe in a just, wise and compassionate society must take back what is bequeathed to us. The Left often gets outfoxed because there is too much misguided individualism that does not believe in coordination and allowing leaders to rise as effective spokespersons. The civil rights movement must be the guide as regards the issues of today – the environment, and a fair and sustainable economy – not only in the United States, but world-wide. The discipline and leadership of the civil rights movement shows how government can be moved to do the right thing when the population is educated and motivated to see what the situation actually is and what needs to be done and demands the government enact laws that fulfill the vision of a fair and just society.
    Like the saying goes, one finger can be easily broken, a fist is another matter – a fist not for striking, but for solidarity and strength. United, non-violent mass action, and effective use of the electoral system (including the un-rigging of the electoral process) is how the society you believe in can happen, not by dropping out creating isolated small, sustainable communities, that like such utopian communities throughout history, wither on the vine.
    Obama-care is an example – a very flawed effort at bringing about access to health care for everyone – flawed because the left was unable to insist upon a single-payer system such as in Canada and Europe, was unable to answer the lies, distortions and misinformation of the right and the corporations – AND – Obama-care is a step in the direction we seek, and must not be allowed to die for lack of support.
    – As the right whips up a frenzy again about its repeal or dismantling, where is the energy from the left insisting that it be implemented and expanded until we have a health system that includes everyone as a human right and includes not only traditional care, but legitimate naturopathic care as well?
    There is work to be done to create a communitarian system of government in the United States that finds the workable balance of individual liberty and social, community responsibility that allows, encourages and supports creative, dynamic expression of all individuals without intrusive and small-minded laws meant to perpetuate dogmatic agendas, while recognizing only the government is strong enough to act as a limit on private individuals and agencies from amassing power and wealth and using it for their own agendas at the expense of others. A new era marked by respect for all life on this planet has to be our goal. This cannot be done without people who shape the government that in turn can shape opinions and ideas and limit the greed and violence of our now outdated and dangerous egoic era. Otherwise the violent fists of egoic individuals and corporations who are now successfully taking over the apparatus of government will break our fingers one-by-one

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