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Progressive Capitalism

Let me see if I understand this correctly: Progressives believe that it is possible to significantly improve the overall quality of life in America by controlling corporate profits, and they believe that the best way to do this is to get the right people in political office, who will enact the right laws and appoint the right judges to enforce these laws. They are not very interested at this time, if at all, in directly criticizing the basic economy of a society in which money-making is the bottom line?

If so, then here are a few objections to Progressivism:

One, we could eliminate the last remains of discrimination against women and minorities, and this would amount to little more than a change in atmosphere of the status quo. The original women’s movement, and the later struggle of Martin Luther King, transcended ordinary legislative battles and norms, and refused to give priority to political efficiency because they were about ushering in a new kind of society altogether, i.e. something akin to Socialism.

Two, the purpose of the US Constitution and the Bill Of Rights was to put limits on a capitalist economy in order to prevent it from running rough shot over all areas of society, but for more then two hundred years this is exactly what has happened in America, and in point of fact American capitalism has intensified inequality, unhappiness, and the loss of self-determination, in the face of technical progress and rising GNP.

Three, the spirit of a capitalist society is making money. In such a society it is impossible, and naïve to even attempt, to take money as a dominating force out of politics, or any part of such a society. We need new structures, including a new/old incentive-structure in human beings. More fundamental than defeating the Republicans, or replacing Obama with a better politician, is the political work of beginning a deep, long-range social movement for a 21st Century American-style Socialism. I’m not against fighting on the surface so long as we are anchored in the deep.

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