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“Humans are the only planetmates coerced into activities in which they find no real pleasure or joy … You introduced ‘work’ into Nature”: The Planetmates on coerced labor, specialization and assembly lines, Marxism and surplus value, industrialization

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“At any rate, in addition to all the extra work you brought into Nature through your controlling ways as it expressed itself in food production and storage, there is additional work involved in defending those stores. Unlike the “possessions” of those in Nature, which are easily acquired and just as easily discarded for they can be easily acquired again, this new classification of possessions that are your “stores” represent a dearly acquired (through “work”) collection of things. They are the physical manifestation of human suffering. Hence they are valued highly for the fact that they are not easily or quickly replaceable. Hence also, they represent quite a concentration of labor, wrought of suffering, which, if acquired, would reduce the amount of such suffering (labor or work) for someone else. So, they are viewed with extreme attraction by equally famished … and suffering … others. With these concentrations of labor-suffering — these stores — then, comes the need to defend them from those others. 

“With defense of stores, or “investment,” we have another reason children were more desired, after you became sedentary. Children are not just extra hands in the extra work you have created in your descent into ever more controlling, they are enlisted in keeping others from stealing it. They act like little soldiers.

“So, with humans we have this added labor, this added, actual, work. Your Marxists like to talk about the surplus value of worker’s labor and how the capitalist owners take that. They say it really belongs to the workers. But they have never looked deeply into its nature.

“They say there is an additional value that is created through collective endeavors over what would be created individually. What they are saying is that if one adds up the value of what people create, working individually and being self-determining, it is a certain amount — say, the total number of chairs that can be fashioned by that group in that amount of time acting on their own. However, if those workers are organized and working collectively, they produce that amount, plus more — say, the number of chairs produced by that same group acting on an assembly line.

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“Anyone who has ever worked in a team knows this. Imagine you are clearing land for farming. You are leveling trees and pulling out stumps. Obviously, you can accomplish a lot more having workers collectively hauling heavy logs than if each worker is on his own straining away. Surplus value is, also, evident in Amish barn-raisings, where working together, structures can be thrown up in a day that would take weeks or months working on one’s own with one’s own strength and energy.

“This is, indeed, a benefit that accrues to humans living in groups of any kind, and it was a huge benefit of tribe life.

“But with sedentary-agrarian ways and hierarchical societies you have an additional surplus value, for humans can be organized around projects in greater numbers and working in tandem and cooperatively. Combining their strength they are able to do things that simply cannot be done, no matter how long one worked away at it, individually or in small groups. 

“This is how the pyramids were built. It explains why such things were not done previous to hierarchical societies … they simply could not be.

“Further, with different units applying themselves to specific tasks within the project while other units focus on others, these units become more skilled, more efficient, and more productive in those tasks. This is the “benefit” of division of labor and, in the public sphere, of specialization in regards to task.

“These factors are realized most clearly in industrialized societies; they are the reason the assembly line and manufacturing are so much more productive than the cottage industry of previous times.

“No doubt, right now, you are thinking what a great idea this is. You see it as people having it easier because they are working together to accomplish more.

“Well, not only does that surplus value not come to the workers — this is the essence of the Marxists’ complaint — for it goes to the ones at the top, the ones doing the organizing, the ones doing the enslaving; but it is the product of effort that is onerous because it is coerced. You simply do not have people agreeing to link themselves together hour after hour — perhaps day after, day, perhaps month after month — pulling together against heavy loads. You do not have anyone, of their own volition, wanting to, over and over again, hour after hour, repeat the same simple actions, perhaps actions that are part of the creation of a product that they never see completed, so never getting even the satisfaction and pleasure of manifesting something in reality that was not there before.

“So not only are such workers deprived of the satisfaction of seeing something manifest out of nothingness through the efforts of one’s own hands, they are even ripped off of the pleasure of its completion. They are coerced into giving up their time, their life, in the carrying out of activities in which they find no real pleasure or joy. They hardly appreciate the product that results from their efforts. Not only was the actual decision to create what was created not theirs … it did not spring forth from their desires, their “instincts” … but they were allowed to participate in only a tiny part of its creation. It is about as pleasurable as chewing food that someone else has picked out for themselves, which one does not get to swallow, having to be turned over to the “employer” when one is done.

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“So with hired, coerced labor, we have an example of work and free will versus “instinct.” The upshot is that for the worker, that pure pleasure involved in creating something out of relatively nothing, that feeling of awe and magic that one has for that moment identified with the creative principle of the Universe, bringing something from no-thingness into thingness, and had a sense of divinity that way, is denied them. 

“There is no planetmate who is similarly deprived….”

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[Pt 4 of 25rd prasad — Family Fortress. More coming…. To see the entire book, to which this will be added eventually (book is two-thirds updated), go to the blog page at http://mladzema.wordpress.com/the-great-reveal-book-6/ … 

Planetmates: The Great Reveal – Michael’s latest book — is now available in print and e-book format. April 27, 2014. at https://www.createspace.com/4691119
To purchase a signed copy of any of my books, email me at sillymickel@gmail.com … Discount for blog subscribers.

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The 1% Stirs Up Culture War to Distract From the Class War They Pursue

Book Preface: Culture War Is Class War


Class War is disguised as Culture War. The 1%especially the wealthiest of them, who have been termed the Filthy Richfoment Culture War among the 99% to distract and cover their real economic motives.

Culture War, Class War this book and accompanying blog, available for free on this siteexplores the resulting cultural divide and how it was instigated and kept alive for fifty years in America by certain elite powers and how and why they choose to benefit while tearing families in two and keeping America paralyzed.

Of course, class war has been going on since the beginning of civilization; it is inevitable with hierarchical societies.

But some eras are more harmonious than others. One might think that enlightened principles of democracy, freedom, and human rightsnormally associated with Western societies in recent centurieshad made modern times one of them. One would be wrong.

While the rise of unions in the early decades of the Twentieth Century and the post-Depression initiation and expanse of programs to benefit the common good might have made the America of the Forties, Fifties, and to some extent, Sixties, one of them, that trend in America and that era of relative class peace has been totally reversed. Hostilities have resumed since the Sixtiesespecially beginning in 1970until currently there is all-out class war that is becoming increasingly bloody and one way or another is taking a toll in lives of the American people.

This book, Culture War, Class War is about how that reversal happened and what has transpired in the last Fifty years to bring us to this crisis. In particular it focuses on the story not told about that; the story the 1% has made sure you would not hear.

This book, with its accompanying blog, looks into why America’s “privileged class”its “royalty,” “blue bloods”started a “culture war” against the middle class, working class, the poor…and the educated, artists, and RichestPulledAwayhumanists in the early 1970s. We discover how their fear of Sixties activism panicked them into an all-out assault against elements that threatened their wealth and privilege in all institutions of American societymedia, education, medicine, government, politics, publication, religion, especially higher education, and so onand restructured them for their ends.

We see how this culture war class war continues today: blatantly so in the Tea Party movement, the Republican Party, the Wall Street giveaways at the expense of jobs, tax cuts for the “filthy rich” and corporations, budget battles and cuts in government services and entitlement programs, rampant anti-environmentalism, and anti-minority, anti-immigrant laws and attacks.

TaxCutsVsBudgetCutsFor example, we see rabid culture war/class war in the abortion debate; attacks on unions in Wisconsin, Ohio, Michigan, and many other states; ever shrinking civil and human rights, including the suspension of habeas corpus signed by George W. Bush; runaway imprisonment of minorities and free-thinkers through egregious anti-drug and anti-sex/anti-gender laws; indefinite imprisonment without trial and torture of political prisoners; and much, much more.

We saw it in 2010 with politicians like Congressman Barton who kowtow to corporations shamelessly defending British Petroleum from having to pay for its atrocious oil spill. Culture war, class war was visible to all in the candidacy Republican of coursefor the Arizona Senator’s race running on a platform of doing away with Social Security and Medicare.

We have seen it since 2010 in the all-out attack on the poor and middle class by the wealthy 1%, who succeeded in getting an additional half trillion in tax cuts at the end of 2010 from Obama and have been using that money to take away free speech and democracy by clubbing their critics mute in the public arena of discourse and orchestrating the legislative and electoral processes. And we see the fight back from the grass roots in the form of the Wisconsin union uprising and the worldwide Occupy movement. There has been an Arab Spring and an American Autumn to get or restore those basic human rights and move toward economic justice in societies around the globe.

At this very moment, one of the biggest battles to date in that class war is waging in the U.S. presidential election. The 1%, having gained an unfair advantage to use their vast wealth unrestrainedly to further their ends electorally, have managed to pollute the electoral process so much that one of its most visible membersMitt Romneyhas managed to be one election away from being the most powerful person in the world. Amazingly, almost one half the American people do not see how that would be a Waterloo for the forces of the 99% and is ok with that happening. To make things worse, this comes on the heels of the one percent’s ongoing effort to dial back the ninety-nine percent’s ability to have a say in their governing with fantastical redistricting outlines and by limiting and harassing voter participation throughout the U.S. with draconian registration requirements and purging of voter rolls.

This one-time “cold war” between the 1% and the 99% has heated up fast. Let us start by looking at its beginnings.

Continue with Culture War, Class War, Chapter One: Smoke, Lies, and Revelations – 1950s Through 1970s

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