This is the October update from Prof. Wolff, given in NYC.

 

The first 20 minutes or so deal with the European economy and how it mirrors and will impact the U.S.  About 25 minutes into it, the focus shifts into solutions by laying the foundation of why people are increasingly interested in doing such a thing.  IMHO this is of particular importance to Black people, as we're known for promoting entrepreneurship (which I agree with) but very often duplicate the same unjust conditions by our white counterparts.

 

There are several illustrations of how business (and ultimately the political apparatus) would have to change to adjust to people deciding to do such a thing. Counter arguments are give to several of the most common objections.  Notwithstanding ER thinks the capitalist system can be 'fixed' 

This reasoning is part of why I do not think there's a direct conspiracy to make Obama "look bad". Its part of how the internal economic system reasons.  People can negate this by changing how production is organized, directly effecting how (and by what means) people reason in decision making. 

 

Here's a link if the embed doesn't work correctly. 

 

http://www.rdwolff.com/content...cussion-october-2012

 

 

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"Everything is legal if the government can see you"-  KRS-ONE

Last edited by Muhammad Cipher
Original Post

"This reasoning is part of why I do not think there's a direct conspiracy to make Obama "look bad".

*********************************************************

 

I have to disagree with you there, because it is OBVIOUS that there is a direct conspiracy to not only make President Obama look bad, but to ruin his presidency, and to ruin any positive legacy President Obama may create while in office.  

 

There has NEVER been a this much opposition to a sitting American president by the opposing side in Congress (with the exception of Civil Rights/Integration error).  

 

There has never been a time in American history where our own Congress is willing to let America's economy fall off the cliff it is on, just to ruin the presidency of a sitting President or to keep a sitting president from being re-elected.  

 

There has never been so much hostility from the opposing side directed at a sitting president.  

 

There have never been an American president that has received or had thwarted, so many death threats or attempts on his life.  

 

There has never been a time in American history that an ex-Vice President has ever toured Europe right before and during initial first weeks of an elected president to attempt to discredit him in the eyes of all of our European allies the way Dick Cheney did.  

 

There has never been a sitting president in America that cannot trust even his own security team to be professional and vigilant in his safety and regarding the image of his office.  

 

 

Consistency and being in lock-step Is direct conspiracy.

Originally Posted by Muhammad Cipher:

 

IMHO this is of particular importance to Black people, as we're known for promoting entrepreneurship (which I agree with) but very often duplicate the same unjust conditions by our white counterparts.

 

 

M.C. ....

 

I can't watched the video just now .... (and maybe it will explain/answer my question, but ....) could you expound a little more of what you mean by this statement?? 

 

I ask because this (Black entrepreneurship) was the topic of a business class I attend at the Houston Urban League last night!!  Specifically .... there was talk about just how enthusiastically entrepreneurship IS promoted and encouraged and sought in the Black community .... but the devastating affect that not having certain (and very important) knowledge about business practices (i.e. knowing what the "Big Boys/White people" know about successfully running a business) has on the number of Black businesses that eventually fail!!

 

So, I'd like to know your take on that!  (But I will try to get to the video and see what Prof. Wolff has to say about it as soon as I can! )

Originally Posted by sunnubian:

"This reasoning is part of why I do not think there's a direct conspiracy to make Obama "look bad".

*********************************************************

 

I have to disagree with you there, because it is OBVIOUS that there is a direct conspiracy to not only make President Obama look bad, but to ruin his presidency, and to ruin any positive legacy President Obama may create while in office.  

 

There has NEVER been a this much opposition to a sitting American president by the opposing side in Congress (with the exception of Civil Rights/Integration error).  

 

There has never been a time in American history where our own Congress is willing to let America's economy fall off the cliff it is on, just to ruin the presidency of a sitting President or to keep a sitting president from being re-elected.  

 

There has never been so much hostility from the opposing side directed at a sitting president.  

 

There have never been an American president that has received or had thwarted, so many death threats or attempts on his life.  

 

There has never been a time in American history that an ex-Vice President has ever toured Europe right before and during initial first weeks of an elected president to attempt to discredit him in the eyes of all of our European allies the way Dick Cheney did.  

 

There has never been a sitting president in America that cannot trust even his own security team to be professional and vigilant in his safety and regarding the image of his office.  

 

 

Consistency and being in lock-step Is direct conspiracy.

I should clarify, I was referring to big business (CEO, BOD, et al) and not the political actors.   From that perspective we agree. Although it can be argued that its not much of a conspiracy.  They're doing what they've always done and said they where going to do.

Also .... let me just add to that .... interestingly, and to that end, IBM in connection with the IMF and the World Bank have created a GLOBAL online business classroom/incubator/business training course, of sorts ... initially to bring that kind of knowledge to developing countries (i.e. mostly to many emerging countries in Africa!!!) .... that pretty much give a small/minority business owner the same tools and capabilities and information that is available to Fortune 1000 companies!! 

 

It's called the "SMEtoolkit.org" and the services and info there are offered for free.  The IMF created it back in 2002.  When IBM decided to make an offshoot of it to cater specifically to the U.S. (in 2007 or 2008, I think!) .... they decided to tailor it specifically towards "minority" business owners (Blacks, Natives Americans, Hispanics) ... due to a lack of business diversity and the historical discrimination faced by these groups by Whites.

 

This U.S. version is supposed to be geared towards giving specialized help to minority/"disadvantaged" business sectors (such as us) and, although I haven't thoroughly checked it out yet ... it is a part of their "mission statement" that this is their goal. 

Originally Posted by Muhammad Cipher:

I should clarify, I was referring to big business (CEO, BOD, et al) and not the political actors.   From that perspective we agree. Although it can be argued that its not much of a conspiracy.  They're doing what they've always done and said they where going to do.

 

 

Mannnn ... y'all gonna make me late playing with y'all on this computer today .... 

 

But .... I would say that to me, the "conspiracy" against the President (by the CEOs, BOD, et al.) comes in the form of this LIE being told that these big companies CAN'T hire MORE people right now .... when it's more like they WON'T hire as many people as they could .... just to be able to cause the President to fail!!  

 

While I do understand the fake azz reasons they're giving .... the global trade slowdown ... the tax situation uncertainty .... and being leery about who will be in control of the government in the coming years .... the fact is that these buttheads people are STILL making mega millions/billions of dollars and are STILL finding/infiltrating enough other and new markets .... that they COULD increase production here in the U.S. if they wanted to!! 

 

Now ... might they take a little hit to their multi-million/billion dollar profits in the process??  Yeah ... MAYBE!!!!  And that IS a MAYBE ... but, even so .... it wouldn't be so devastating to them that the flip side of being able to help American workers and positively contribute to bringing back the American economy as payoff ... wouldn't be a benefit for EVERYONE!!!

 

IMO, they're greedy, selfish asses want it ALL!!! Not to share ONE PENNY of profit that they might be able to hold on to!!   AND they want to destroy this President's legacy!!!  And I think they are purposely withholding any kind of help they COULD give to jumpstarting this economy (if they wanted to) in order to make the President .... not only "look bad"  ... but fail miserably!!! 

Originally Posted by EbonyRose:
Originally Posted by Muhammad Cipher:

 

IMHO this is of particular importance to Black people, as we're known for promoting entrepreneurship (which I agree with) but very often duplicate the same unjust conditions by our white counterparts.

 

 

M.C. ....

 

I can't watched the video just now .... (and maybe it will explain/answer my question, but ....) could you expound a little more of what you mean by this statement?? 

 

I ask because this (Black entrepreneurship) was the topic of a business class I attend at the Houston Urban League last night!!  Specifically .... there was talk about just how enthusiastically entrepreneurship IS promoted and encouraged and sought in the Black community .... but the devastating affect that not having certain (and very important) knowledge about business practices (i.e. knowing what the "Big Boys/White people" know about successfully running a business) has on the number of Black businesses that eventually fail!!

 

So, I'd like to know your take on that!  (But I will try to get to the video and see what Prof. Wolff has to say about it as soon as I can! )

 

 

Sure thing.

 

Entrepreneurship has been encouraged by many within the Black community for years and naturally I support this--as do all Muslims in the NOI.  So the idea of doing business isn't what's missing.  What is absent is the exploration and inclusion of business forms that fit why many Black people go into business, and what we imagine the fruit of that business being (ie an improved community). 

 

There is an idea and method of reasoning among Black people (including from my community) that if we just learned and mastered what the white people have learned and mastered, THEN we can do what they've done in the way of success and accumulating money-----but do it with (righteousness, African,human,justice etc, etc).

 

This has either proved a total failure or VERY difficult to maintain, leading to a collapsed effort because our classes and seminars do not focus AT ALL on the "Organization of Production".  This isn't IMHO at all because of lack of good intention on our parts.  Many who have gone to business school where NOT exposed to any non capitalist forms of production (Wolff's comments in the Charlie Rose clip i posted).  By extension, many Black people have a knowledge base that doesn't extend beyond what is deemed acceptable or "standard" in business.

 

Most seminars focus and treat the business structure and organization of production that takes place within that business as a universal given.  That is, its an automatic assumption that a hierarchical structure is used (a head or board, and subordinates).  From that comes various methods and justifications for management types, styles etc.  So a lot time is spent on discussing the advantages of choosing an LLC over an SCorp, or the risk of a partnership etc, but none on considering conducting business using a Capitalist form (the typical hierarchical structure) or a non Capitalist (or Co-op) structure.

 

This isn't something that is done as a conscience decision, but as an extension of what is and isn't considered in the larger (white) culture.   So we'll talk about 'the African principal of cooperative economics' but use Capitalist Modes of Production which are antithetical concepts by function.

 

I should note, Im not dissing Capitalism or using these terms as pejoratives, but descriptive of function.

 

Its true that many Black businesses fail. But that's also true of non Black business regardless of form.  It happens.  What's not discussed, are how and why the successful businesses fail.   Huh?  Yep, you read that right.  Black businesses that are successful (in the context of the Capitalist mode of production) are so because of their submission to the logic associated with that system. This is inescapable.  What this means is that Black Businesses begin to make the same decisions, using the same reasoning as the white counterpart that caused them to go into business in the first place!  So we leave the J-O-B (which we like to call Just Over Broke) to start a business being every bit as unjust as the "Boss" that drove us to starting our own business in the first place.  Suddenly, holding on that that "tax incentive" while NOT hiring any workers.......makes sense.  After all, that's how the game is played. Shutting down a plant in The D, and moving to China is perfectly fine if it means your "net worth" goes up, landing you on the cover of Black Enterprise where we'll all applaud and celebrate you for your "success".  In fact, you begin to relise one of the "secrets" of business which usually goes like this.  Smart people work for their money, smarter people let their money work for them.  This marking your entry into the world of Big Finance.  After all, you don't have a checking or even a money market account, you have a mutual fund.  You have sharpies use your money to make money.  You look for the greatest return on your investment.  What you don't do is ask how any of that works--and why would you?  After all, your the one who's successful and WINNING!  Not like those who are still crying and complain, instead of getting in the game to win.  (keep all these buzz phrases in mind when you attend seminars).

 

The above isn't done necessarily because of malicious intent or lack of knowledge or knowledge of self.  It is a requirement of reasoning by the use of a particular system.

 

What we can learn from this video, that type of work and other non capitalist examples is that There is an another way of conducting business, that is perfectly viable, successful and healthier for the community, regardless of where or who adopts it. Much of the rejection, and object isn't based on empirical findings (the data actually shows these forms yield better results from quality of product to quality of life) but a cultural and ideological fear of even considering  breaking from Capitalism---something other cultures do NOT have.  

 

In the video, Wolff gives several narrative examples of  how the reasoning changes (when you chose a different form of organizing your business. That starts at the 50:50 mark.  From there are also rhetorical rebuttals to some of the "justification" for dismissing these idea.  Much of his narrative examples are part of the Mondragon  structure, that has proven quite successful for over 50 years.

Last edited by Muhammad Cipher
Originally Posted by Muhammad Cipher:

What we can learn from this video, that type of work and other non capitalist examples is that There is an another way of conducting business, that is perfectly viable, successful and healthier for the community, regardless of where or who adopts it. Much of the rejection, and object isn't based on empirical findings (the data actually shows these forms yield better results from quality of product to quality of life) but a cultural and ideological fear of even considering  breaking from Capitalism---something other cultures do NOT have.  

 

 

Mannnnn ... M.C. ... I was right there with you .... all the way to this ending here!!    We almost made it!  But here is where I think thing go a little differently!!

 

I do understand and agree with EVERYTHING you've said up to the part I've placed in bold .. but, I would offer this as a secondary possibility ...

 

That it is, indeed, a case (strong) case of a lack of knowledge and education ... due to the fact that 1) as you say ... Black people (and no other people, for that matter) are TAUGHT any better than that .. in American colleges or universities!!  Capitalism .. (and those ugly side affects which you described Black people get when they 'get into business' like "them"... IS the "American Way." 

 

So that's how it's taught ... and that's how it's learned.  But ... American education isn't the ONLY education in the world!!  Knowledge is out there for the learning.  And anybody who wants to know more .. can.

 

#2) Black people do what White people do because - again - they haven't been taught to do anything else/different!!  BUT ... IMO, we are very adaptive/creative/interpretive ... AND, if TAUGHT "another way" to do things, could and would be receptive to any kind of successful implementation of such a different way!!

 

If Black people were in the process - and mindset - of educating our OWN children in schools with curriculums centered around their successful development ... then perhaps more of our cultural, more "traditional ways" of doing things could/would be taught to them so that they are made aware that there is "something different" to even try.

 

Third ... like it or not ... "capitalism" is SUCCESSFUL and HIGHLY PROFITABLE .... for those that are able to capitalize on it!!    you can make a lot of money in the "capitalist" system.  And Black folks ain't no fools ... they want to do what works!!  What makes money!!  Which, I think, is a major factor of what makes capitalism so attractive to those of us with their own businesses or looking to be highly successful entrepreneurs.

 

However ... first, there aren't a whole lot of Black people who OWN those types of mega-m/billion dollar businesses.  The big factories ... the big manufacturers .. the big distributors ... the banks ... the venture capitalist firms .. the big companies that employ thousands of people at a time ... and pack up and leave for China .... Black people don't own those companies. They own the ones that make just enough to stay profitable ... until the ones that do pack up and move to China cause them to go bankrupt and ultimately fail. 

 

But second ... what you're describing can just as easily be a description for greed.  Crabs in a barrel.  Because most Black people with any real - REAL - money didn't earn it as a business owner.  They came into it in other ways.  And REFUSE to give some of it back by helping others lower down the line or giving opportunities to others.  They get it.  And they keep it.  And then use it for yet another "American Dream" tradition of spending it on frivolous, material, financially-depreciating "things."

 

If more Black people KNEW about "alternatives" such as these .. I have no doubt there are entrepreneurial spirits among us that couldn't initiate the concept successfully.  But the problem is ... Black people ... and especially our young ... are not TAUGHT anything about the concept of OWNING businesses.  Nothing they/we are taught - not in schools, not in the homes, not in the churches ... by any ADULTS as a means of being "passed down knowledge" ... about things like money, wealth, business ownership, establishing careers.  And Why?  Because our parents and grandparents don't know anything about those things to be able to PASS IT DOWN to younger generations!!!

 

"Being like White people" - or "American" - is what/all we know because the memories and knowledge of our ancestors brought here was forever wiped from the generational memory of us as a people forever!!  The lessons of (tribal) community and unity died with them that were killed for trying to maintain it.

 

But if there's anything that we're not "like white people" about, it's serious consideration, preparation, education and dedication to owning and starting a business.  Because for too long it was knowledge we were not allowed to have ... and now,  being given the opportunity to learn, too many of us simply won't do what it takes to do so.  LEARN about it.  Write a business plan.  Pick  a viable enterprise.  Do ALL the math. Hook up with (serious) PARTNERS who can develop the business in ways you might not.

 

It takes more than just wishing about it.  And these days you don't even have to go to school for that.  You can teach yourself almost anything you want to know sitting in front of a computer online.

 

But the problem is ... you gotta WANT to know.  And you HAVE to put in the EFFORT to learn.  From there ... the rest is gravy.

 

Your post actually underscores the point in bold.

 

What people call "greed" is IMHO a way of deflecting a characteristic embedded within the system onto an individual.  The reason why "Greed is good" is because of the rational behind capital accumulation and a whole host of other issues that businesses (who are organized in such a way) face.   What you say about Black businesses NOT helping others is true, but again, you have to understand that within the context of a Capitalist system (that uses Markets to distribute damn near everything), that type of behavior is irrational.  Why would you help a future competitor and threat to your successful operation?  For every cultural reason you can give (that I'd agree with) I'll show you where the mentality necessary for a person to be successful as a capitalist will either negate those reasons, or dismiss them irreverent to his/her operation.

 

Whether or not capitalism is or isn't successful isn't the issue. By that same narrow standard, Slavery was also a success.  We see and say today that success at the expense of a race or population of people subject to those conditions is unacceptable.  

 

The question is...."is the success that comes with using a Capitalist form of organization of production compatible with the type of society we all claim we want?"

 

On the question of ownership, we agree but for different reasons.  I do think we've romanticized ownership without really knowing or understanding how and why ownership is important.  The mere owning of something isn't was leads prosperity or development.  Thus, you can have a change or transfer of ownership without any corresponding social change at all. 

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