Newmedia on Tue, 22 Nov 2011 15:39:23 +0100 (CET)

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Re: <nettime> Debt Campaign Launch

Now you're getting somewhere -- but not nearly far enough!
Another 100,000 students defaulting on their loans won't "change the  
system" but only screw up their "credit ratings," just as it does for the many  
who default today.  They are still *trapped* in the system, which was built  
to deal with such "miscreants."  Will this change the structure of  
college-loan payments?  No.
The only option is to LEAVE the system (which in practical terms means  
"straddle" being inside and outside the system at the same time) -- which is  
exactly what TENS of MILLIONS of people have already done.
Perhaps you are one of them.  I am.  So are my children.  So  are many 
hundreds of people I know, including many in my Brooklyn  neighborhood.
The fundamental problem is that *most* people feel that they need to become 
 WAGE-SLAVES to live in this society.  But not everyone feels that  way.
You can start your own business -- preferably set up as a  cooperative.  
You can be a carpenter or a plumber.  You can sell  contraband.  You can 
"work" for 6-months and travel the other  6-months.  You can "retire" early.  
There are many options and many  are taking them.  More-and-more everyday.
Indeed *interest-bearing* DEBT (i.e. what used to be called USURY) -- of  
which the student loans and mortgages only two examples -- are a part of the  
problem but not the fundamental issue . , , which is the notion that we  
OWE "the market" our own productive labor.  We don't.
Forcing people to "sell" their productive labor is SLAVERY.  You  don't 
need to work for anyone else.  Your labor is your own.  Use it  wisely.
Btw, there were a few people thinking this way in the 60s (i,e, I  
co-founded the Yellow Jersey Bicycle Coop in Madison, etc.) but, beyond the sex,  
drugs and rock-'n-roll (which occupied a lot of the time), the *headlines*  
were mostly about "changing the system" -- which succeeded in ending the draft 
.  . . only to make WAR easier to tolerate, since those fighting and dying 
come  from somewhere else now.
Be careful of the "unintended consequences" of the "changes" you  DEMAND!
The big difference now (and the *BIG* problem that "Marxists" have or  
anyone else who is operating on 19th century notions, which is to say ideas that 
 only made "sense" before the invention of electricity) is that the GROUND 
of our  culture has *radically* shifted over the past 200 years -- most 
recently due to  digital technology.
With a computer, a network and a keyboard (i.e. what we've all had for 20  
years), we have shifted the social-balance towards  being PRODUCERS (which 
is what I am doing right now by writing this email)  and away from being 
CONSUMERS (which is why the consumption-based economies in  developed countries 
*cannot* recover for a decade or more) and we are all trying  to figure out 
how to live in this NEW WORLD.
So, give up your plans for "radical change of the system we live under" and 
 *just* STOP living under that system (at least for the better half of your 
Come up with something creative for your own life and those around you (as  
I suspect you already have).  
Changing the SYSTEM only leads to another *system* and that's not the way  
for HUMANS to live.  In fact, the chances are nearly 100% that the new  
"system" will be a worse one.
Obama didn't "fix" anything -- he just made it worse by getting people's  
hopes up.
You want to be a RADICAL?  Then act like one . . . F*CK THE  SYSTEM!!
Mark Stahlman
Brooklyn NY

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