Author Topic: Less than Half a Dollar a Day!  (Read 589 times)

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Holden

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Less than Half a Dollar a Day!
« on: December 26, 2014, 09:24:56 am »
In the US, the Ford Foundation provided millions in grants and loans to support the Credit Union Movement... pioneered by... Edward Filene...who believed in creating a mass consumption society...by giving workers affordable access to credit—a radical idea at the time. ...the other half of what Filene believed in was the more equitable distribution of national income. Capitalists seized on the first half...and...turned the US working class into people who are permanently in debt... Many years later, this idea has trickled down to the impoverished countryside of Bangladesh when Mohammed Yunus and the Grameen Bank brought microcredit to starving peasants with disastrous consequences. Microfinance companies in India are responsible for hundreds of suicides—200 people in Andhra Pradesh in 2010 alone. A national daily recently published a suicide note by an 18-year-old girl who was forced to hand over her last Rs 150, her school fees, to bullying employees of the microfinance company.
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« Last Edit: December 26, 2014, 10:20:13 am by Holden »
La Tristesse Durera Toujours                                  (The Sadness Lasts Forever ...)
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The Indignant One

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Re: Less than Half a Dollar a Day!
« Reply #1 on: December 29, 2014, 03:49:16 pm »
I have been inspired by Arundhati Roy for many years now.

The local library has a copy of her latest work, Capitalism: A Ghost Story.  i am going to check it out.  Thanks for the heads up.
« Last Edit: December 29, 2014, 04:11:53 pm by { } »
Things They Will Never Tell YouArthur Schopenhauer has been the most radical and defiant of all troublemakers.

Gorticide @ Nothing that is so, is so DOT edu

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Holden

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« Last Edit: January 01, 2015, 03:18:32 am by Holden »
La Tristesse Durera Toujours                                  (The Sadness Lasts Forever ...)
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The Indignant One

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The Mining and Infrastructure Cartel
« Reply #3 on: September 01, 2021, 09:12:55 pm »
The Mining and Infrastructure Cartel

While going over some old files, I heard an interview of Arundhati Roy about what is covered in her book, Walking with the Comrades.  The Indian State is engaged in moving the indigenous people of the forest into cities so they can get at the resources for mining.

This is taking place south of you, Holden, in Central India.   Do such activities get much attention from everyday gorts commuting to their "workplaces" ?

The government, she argues, needs an excuse to push the people off their lands. That's why, Roy says, officials operate under the pretence of fighting "Maoist" terror.
« Last Edit: September 01, 2021, 09:15:54 pm by Kaspar Hauser »
Things They Will Never Tell YouArthur Schopenhauer has been the most radical and defiant of all troublemakers.

Gorticide @ Nothing that is so, is so DOT edu

~ Tabak und Kaffee Süchtigen ~

Holden

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Response(Part-I): Less than Half a Dollar a Day!
« Reply #4 on: September 02, 2021, 02:40:41 pm »
Roy is a very controversial figure here. She started off as a fiction writer. Her first book won the Booker prize which is a pretty big deal in the Commonwealth of Nations.

To understand what she is saying and where she is coming from, we would have to travel back in time.



Before she published this book almost no one knew her. After this book, she turned into a well known figure not just in India but in the west too.

While her father was a Hindu, her mum was a Christian, which makes her suspect for some people on the right. Also, her mum was from extreme south of the country,a state which has been ruled by the Communist party for many years.In fact, they still rule it( elected democratically).

But we need to go back further in the past. To the 1910s when a young Indian boy from a very wealthy family was studying in the University of Cambridge( he would govern the country for close to two decades after the dismemberment of the Empire).

This young boy was ,while he grew up( he did his schooling as well in the UK), imbibed an ideology ,which is not  well known anymore, called Fabianism.
When he came to power he looked forward to a Fabian future for the country. Also, just before he came to power, the Conservative party in the UK suffered a huge defeat at the hand of the Labour party and that too had big impact on the direction the newly separated country was to take.

At that time, a very large chunk of the country was severed off, because many of the Muslim citizens of the undivided country lead by Jinnah believed that they were racially and culturally different. ( As an aside, their leader Jinnah spent most of his life in the place where I am now as a very successful lawyer).

So, while Pakistan choose to have Islam as their official religion, over here, the people chose a constitution which was ( and is)secular.

When the cold war battle-lines were drawn the West decided to support Pakistan against this country which was nominally non-aligned but was ,for all intents and purposes, in the same camp as the erstwhile USSR.

You might have noticed that I  frequently mention that I have read a lot of Russian literature. Part of the reason is that the country was flooded with Russian literature( translated in English) till the late 1980s and when I was growing up in the early 2000s, I could still find a lot of it very easily and cheaply.

So, we were, Soviet-lite. No gulags. But the general direction of the economy was the same. Now, I said just -no gulags. The reason ,I think, is two-fold for that. Historically, even before the British came, thanks cultural reasons, people here have generally been moderates. The Middle Way.The is perhaps what saved us from the extremes of Communism one gets to see in the Russian and the Chinese version ( but the same tendency, I mean that of choosing the Middle Way, might have resulted in abject defeat in 1100s when ,for the first time, people of this country came, face to face, with the orthodoxy and rigidity of an Abrahamic faith.
Well, as its rather lengthy already, I am calling it Part-I of my response and would carry on tomorrow, ceteris paribus.

P.S.:Thanks for mentioning Savage God ,I have been meaning to read it & thank you for all the wonderful messages.
« Last Edit: September 02, 2021, 03:01:13 pm by Holden »
La Tristesse Durera Toujours                                  (The Sadness Lasts Forever ...)
-van Gogh.

The Indignant One

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Re: Less than Half a Dollar a Day!
« Reply #5 on: September 02, 2021, 08:00:26 pm »
Thank you for your thoughtful response, Holden of Northern India.  I have been following Arundhati Roy since about the time I lost my position with the State Park Service in 1998, just after The God of Small Things was published.  I had been radicalized by being Down-and-Out in Freehold and Asbury Park, Dirty Jersey (and a lucky loan/grant to further this *** Education of Little Tree ***).

I don't know why I have not mentioned her much on this message board, except for a handful of times.

Quote from: Arundhati Roy
Another book? Right now when it looks as though all the music, the art, the architecture, the literature, the whole of human civilisation means nothing to the monsters who run the world. What kind of book should I write? For now, just for now, for just a while, pointlessness is my biggest enemy. That’s what nuclear bombs do, whether they’re used or not. They violate everything that is humane, they alter the meaning of life.

I mention Arundhati Roy in 2014 in Resistance in Consumerist Society:

With Arundhati Roy I have to ask, "How can so many be controlled by so few?"

And along with Daniel Quinn I have to say that it is not so much the 1% living like gods, kings, princesses that disgusts me, but that the 99% aspire to emulate their ostentatious consumption.  We reach a point where we just don't care anymore.  Everything is set up to manipulate people into spending money so as to have the credentials of "success" --- Isn't it rather sweet revenge to witness that the gorts think they are winning in the game of life when the real treasures are not even for sale?  Those of us who do not chase after the status symbols will be branded as losers or even mentally deranged ... I say be strong and continue to resist.

There are far more outsiders than insiders.  If we only realized our numbers, we could shut the shit down by tomorrow morning.  And with George Orwell we must say ... And yet!

We just have to wait and see.  Perhaps the tide is turning.


Then, in a thread started by one who is called "Shep" (only 6 posts here), Freedom Fighter vs. Terrorist:

Quote from: Shep
However I believe "terrorist" has become a hugely overused buzzword.

I agree.  Unfortunately, there is this mindset which says, "if you are not with us, you are against us".   I like the way Arundhati Roy responded to this.  She basically said that just because she does not side with Mickey Mouse in the White House does not imply that she sides with the Mad Mullahs.

"Rich old men protecting their property ..." - George Carlin on War

Please do not let me distract you from typing up (or simply reflecting upon) Part II of your response; and there is no need to rush.  I understand that the politics of day-to-day life can fry the brain completely, where all you will be able to do is lay there and groan, sob, or laugh like a madman.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nop1PRMiiPY


*** FOOTNOTE ***

As for the controversy over Forrest Carter, creator of the Outlaw Josey Wales, I am afraid I'll have to stay in denial on that one, since I am so very fond of the fictional characters he created.   Sorry if liking fictional characters, such as Outlaw Josey Wales, Little Tree, Ignatius Reilly and Henry Fool isn't politically correct.   Am I permitted to like [Alcoholic] Ed Abbey?   

I understand that the claims against the author/writer are over comments he had made while inebriated.   If this counts as "State's evidence" or even if it is enough for the general public to turn against him, well, I guess I am as good as dead then, for the things that erupt from my voice-box while drunk have made me wonder if I myself were in need of an exorcism.   

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d1kJYnLV1kE
« Last Edit: September 02, 2021, 08:43:42 pm by Kaspar Hauser »
Things They Will Never Tell YouArthur Schopenhauer has been the most radical and defiant of all troublemakers.

Gorticide @ Nothing that is so, is so DOT edu

~ Tabak und Kaffee Süchtigen ~

Holden

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Re: Less than Half a Dollar a Day!
« Reply #6 on: September 03, 2021, 03:22:34 pm »
Little Tree looks rather interesting to me. I checked out Savage God, the first chapter where the author talks about his friend Sylvia Plath. I remember reading a newspaper article about her just before an exam in 2006-I shut my eyes and all the world drops dead(I think I made you up inside my head).

Well, to pick up the threads of the response as regards Roy-wherever I go, it could be the market place or the bus-stop there is a literal sea of men and women and kids here.It is a disaster. Schopenhauer was about 22 years younger than Malthus and I feel quite certain he that must have read at least something by him.

Do the proletariat here know about her? I would say no. But I guess many in even the lower middle-class know something about her.Most just viscerally hate her.

But to understand why they do so one needs to understand the background.In the Begal famine of the early 1940s millions of people starved to death:


download high resolution images instagram


download high resolution images instagram

Even in the late 2000s the country was worse off  in companion with the sub-Saharan Africa:

https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/politics-and-nation/india-below-sub-saharan-africa-in-hunger-index/articleshow/3596612.cms?from=mdr

Till about 1986 per capita Indian GDP was higher than China’s. But things have changed drastically since then.
So, a lot of people here have begun to  imagine that the economy needs to be more like that of the Western world and have started to embrace the Anglo-Saxon model of capitalism.They see South Korea and they see Taiwan and they notice the difference in economic well-being.

The Soviet-lite model produced very slow growth.

 I read the article, the link to which you left behind which says how bosses want that the employees should be on call 24/7 and they should not have any personal boundaries.They do not like the employees who are not very enthusiastic about their jobs,even if those employees are productive and efficient.

That is all quite true here. I have read articles about software engineers who flung themselves out of the windows of high-rise buildings due to work related stress and the employers pass off their deaths as something caused by their( the suicide's ) failure in love affair.
Maybe like the Little Tree ,who does not like being in school, I do not like being in such a cruel world.I am quite sure Nietzsche must have thought about doing away with himself more than once.

You may not be among the economic 1%,but I am quite sure you are in the intellectual 1%.
I read about the Little Tree a bit today and liked it a great deal.

Roy ,in one of her interviews,says that we should fight the government and side with far-left and if they betray us then we would fight them too.

Well, I am sorry, but I cannot buy such rhetoric,I might have a few years back,but now,Schopenhauer’s ideas have percolated too deeply. She asks good questions but her solutions do not satisfy me or maybe I am just a man of an ascetic bent of mind.Trouble is I see no solutions. No political solutions at any rate.

Plath killed herself. But before she did that she had two kids. Her first serious attempt was when she was around 20, then, she had two kids and then killed herself at 30.

Van Gogh when he was around 37,only he had no kids. The gorts who killed him ,now own his paintings.
Once the pearl has been created, the lowly mollusk who made it with his blood,sweat and tears,is chucked into the dustbin and the pearl carried away for decorating some princess’ crown.


« Last Edit: September 03, 2021, 03:27:03 pm by Holden »
La Tristesse Durera Toujours                                  (The Sadness Lasts Forever ...)
-van Gogh.