PARADIGM SHIFT OCCURRING?
Hegemony : “Political and economic control exercised by a dominant class, and its success in projecting its own way of seeing the world, human and social relationships as ‘common sense’ and part of the natural order by those who are, in fact, subordinated to it.” – Fontana Dictionary of Modern Thought
So here we are. And it’s not a pretty picture, is it? All the graft, corruption, theft, fraud, bubbles in land prices, resource depletion, debt and warmongering coming home to roost: all of it perfectly legal and institutionally sanctioned.
Then there’s the second level of social disintegration: the massive amount of poverty-induced crime stemming, as a spin-off, from the abovementioned ‘legalised’ robbery: petty theft; violence; drug-related and other anti-social behaviours.
We do bother to lock up perpetrators for these misdemeanors because there are laws against such petty social crimes, and we feel a little safer when these people are off the streets; in America particularly.
But we’re unprepared to revisit first principles, and there are no laws against the plutocracy siphoning off the people’s rent. It is they who should be behind bars and their lock-up keys sent moonward.
And so it is that the people’s right to their rent doesn’t head up any Bill of Rights. We’re constantly assured by proponents we don’t need any Bill of Rights which bothers to account for the economic rent owed to the community.
It all went wrong when the powers that be somehow managed to convince us we ought to dispense with the idea of a quit rent from time immemorial payable both for the occupation of leasehold or freehold land. Revenue must come from taxes upon us, they said – and we were foolish enough to believe them.
The first man who, having enclosed a piece of ground, bethought himself of saying, “This is mine”, and found people simple enough to believe him, was the real founder of civil society. From how many crimes, wars and murders, from how many horrors and misfortunes, might not anyone have saved mankind by pulling up the stakes, filling in the ditch, and crying to his fellows, “Beware of listening to this imposter; you are undone if you once forget that the fruits of the earth belong to us all, and the earth itself to nobody.” Jean Jacques Rousseau (1712-1778) “Social Contract”
The legal system has become hopelessly enmeshed and complicit. With some notable exceptions*, it acceded to this monumental corruption. The churches went for it in a big way, too, because it reduced or exempted charges on their lands, and the study of economics fell in with this grand play by hiding the reality of economic rent from rigorous analysis.
We fell for this – the world’s greatest con trick – hook, line and sinker, even seeing to it that any charges remaining on land or real estate (now incorrectly deemed to be ‘private property’) fell at the closest level of government, so we can simply pop down to the Town Hall and complain about them. This usually gets the support of big money and leads to such results as the property tax ceiling which wrecked California (commonly known as Proposition 13).
Mario Cuomo is about to try his hand at wrecking New York State by the same means, and Congressman Silver wants to do likewise for the city of New York. I’m sure they’ll succeed, because gross stupidity rules at this particular time in history.
Don’t fret, however …. be not solicitous, folks! There’s good news. Charles Hugh Smith says we should relax and go with the flow, a necessary major paradigm shift is upon us, and I believe he may be right.
I’d like to think we’re about to have the next of the “Great Religious Awakenings” Mason Gaffney believes may be underway. The churches certainly need it, because they’ve forgotten their preferential option for the poor by having sold out to wealthy benefactors.
Seen in this light, the depression shouldn’t frighten us at all. Sit back, fasten up, and enjoy the ride, folks …. we’re in the early stages of a sorely needed paradigm shift.
The earth, therefore, and all things therein, are the general property of all mankind, from the immediate gift of the creator
….there is no foundation in nature or in natural law why a set of words upon parchment should convey the dominion of land. – William Blackstone (1723-1780) “Commentaries”
I find it very difficult to disagree with the principles of Henry George …. I believe in the taxation of land
values only. – Justice Louis Brandeis (US Supreme Court)