Posted on October 2, 2006
Filed Under Uncategorized |
Dear Friends and Thinkers,
If you have not seen it, please watch the fifteen minute, extended trailer to Aaron Russo’s America: From Freedom to Fascism. It is a stark wakeup call for those who still believe we live in a free country and, a call to action for all Americans to take back control of our country.
I meet lots of people and organizations through this little website of mine, and one of them is Dave Stratman, one of the founding members of a group here in Boston called New Democracy. New Democracy is a group formed to “put revolution for real democracy on the public agenda,” and is based on the general principles developed in Dave’s exellent book, We CAN Change the World: The Real Meaning of Everyday Life (one of the five-star books in my bibliography). In his book, Dave argues that capitalism and communism are just flip sides of the same coin, and neither of these undemocratic systems offers a promising sustainable future to the world’s people.
To create a new, more humane and peaceful world, we desperately need to challenge elite power and create a democratic alternative. A new society is possible, but only based on a new understanding that sees ordinary people, rather than economic or political elites, as the source of the good in society and the source of a new world.
Below is New Democracy’s Statement of Principles. We would appreciate your thoughtful input and feedback on the Statement and on how we can move towards making it a reality.
STATEMENT OF PRINCIPLES
We live under a dictatorship of the wealthy. Most people want a better world. We can only achieve a new world by openly declaring our goals:
1. We are for revolution to create a real democracy. We call on people everywhere to end elite rule and to create real democracy based on principles of solidarity and equality. Democracy means ordinary people shaping all of society with their shared values. It means people together freely deciding their goals and how they will cooperate to achieve them. This includes transforming the goals, organization, and control of work to create an economy where the productive wealth of society is used to meet the human needs of all.
2. Revolution to achieve real democracy is necessary and possible. Revolution is necessary because the problems we face are rooted in a system of elite rule that controls people by attacking relations of solidarity and equality. These problems cannot be solved without creating a new society. Revolution is possible because the struggle of ordinary people to humanize the world is the force that drives history, and because most people want the new world that only revolution can bring.
3. Our confidence in the possibility of revolution comes from our confidence in ordinary people. Capitalism, communism, and socialism have all led to societies in which an elite holds the power. None of these systems is democratic. Communism and socialism failed as alternatives to capitalism because they accepted capitalism’s view that economic development is the basis of human development, that self-interest is the primary human motivation, and that ordinary people are a passive mass or a dangerous problem. The basis of a new society is a new, positive view of people.
4. The everyday struggle of ordinary people to humanize the world creates the wealth of society and whatever positive human relationships exist within it. Most people in their everyday lives struggle against a culture based on competition and exploitation. They strive in their families and workplaces to create relationships based on equality and commitment to each other. People’s everyday lives have revolutionary meaning.
5. Class struggle is a struggle over what values should shape society, what goals it should pursue, and who should control it. It is a struggle over what it means to be a human being. The values of the capitalist class are inequality, competition, and control from above. The values of the working class are equality, solidarity, and democracy. The goal of working class struggle is to transform the whole world with its values. The most personal acts of kindness and the most public acts of class war are part of the same struggle to humanize the world.
6. The revolutionary movement must not be based on politicians or union officials or business structures or the courts but on ordinary people themselves as the driving force and leaders of change.
7. Revolutions are built on hope. The revolutionary movement will unite ordinary men and women of every race and nationality in a movement in which our confidence in our ability to change the world comes from our confidence in each other.
New Democracy works for democratic revolution.
Write New Democracy at P.O. Box 427, Boston, MA 02130.
Call: John Spritzler, 617-566-9637 or Dave Stratman, 617-524-4073.