Blogs are a familiar feature on the internet - where users post content in an accumulating manner, with comments, and search options, etc. They facilitate expression and exploration, and via attached comments, also debate and synthesis.
Reading and Navigating Blogs
Our blogs are quite powerful. Each writer can post, as is typically the case. Sustainers who have the option can also post, however. All Blogs appear in the blog system, and sometimes also in content boxes the top page of ZNet - and always via the left menu of the top page - and can be found via searches, etc.
Commenting on blogs follows the blogs, attached at the bottom, and blog comments, like all others, are also visible in many places that show comments including in the forum system. In addition, the entire blog system gathers content for everyone - but one can look at the accumulating content in many ways.
For example one can look at one writer's efforts - so one is seeing what is effectively a blog system for that one writer, or Sustainer.
One can also look at the content by topic, seeing blogs that are tagged as being about a certain topic - or place, as well. Thus, when doing that, it is a blog system about a topic, or a place, with many contributors.
One can look at only writer blogs, or only sustainer blogs, as well.
One can look at blogs for particular Groups, too.
All this is easily done using the left menu. Searches allow even more variables and refinements.
Creating Blog Posts
If you are a Sustainer with permission, and are logged in, you will see a link in the left menu for you to post a blog - and you can use that to post one, and then tag it various ways (such as with a topic or place, or a group tag), and once you do, it is in the system with you as the author.
You can also use the console button to the left to post a blog - anytime and from anywhere in the site, as long as you are logged in.
Meanwhile, enjoy the blogs - and, by the way, if you are a Free Member or a Sustainer with a ZSpace page, of course you can put one or more content boxes on it, pulling blog links of any sort you may want to filter for, for example, by you or by your friends or by others - and by topic, about places, for groups, etc.
Michael Albert's Blog
Web Address: http://www.zcommunications.org/zspace/malbert Bio:
Michael Albert is a founder and current member of the staff of Z Magazine as well as staff of Z Magazine`s web system: ZCom (www.zmag.org). Albert`s radicalization occurred during the 1960s. His po... (More)
> I can't help but wonder whether any system can survive if it is too complex for the general public to understand.
Is this serous? Parecon has a few key institutions and concepts, which a junior high school student could easily understand. To understand even its most intricate logic – high school students would have no problem. Capitalism, in contrast, is simply incomprehensible even to those who devote themselves to virtually nothing else…
> Capitalism evolved out of the traditional barter system. If I spend all of my resources making corn (maximum efficiency), I will have extra to sell or exchange for clothes, tools, etc. Like soccer, capitalism is a very simple give and take exchange. The concepts are easy to understand with little experience or effort.
What is described bears no more relation to capitalism than to parecon…
> Not to say that capitalism is not complex, especially on a macro level, but the entire system is built on a very intuitive theoretical base. Participatory economics is a mess of rules and institutional mechanisms that are meant to prop up a wholly constructed economy. Is it too convoluted to survive?
If this person were to think in terms of say a hundred people stranded on an island he would see that his characterization – though I certainly don't think it is a crucial issue – is essentially the reverse of reality.
Try it – try explaining first how they would apportion tasks and divvy up output and make decisions in a pareconish way. Then try and explain how they would do it in a truly capitalistic way – with private ownership, profits, wages, a corporate division of labor, markets for allocations – etc.
? I can't overlook the significance of Chapter 4 in which Albert declares a moratorium on the ownership of the means of production.
More accurately, eliminates it…
> “In short, we simply remove ownership of the means of production as an economic consideration. Property in the form of means of production becomes a non-thing. It has no bearing in a participatory economy” (90). Albert restates this goal a dozen or more ways, casting off the concept as if it is an understood evil which requires little or no explanation, much like abolishing murder or organized crime for the construction of a civil society.
Actually, that's about right…though of course in the book far more reason is given, such as gigantic disparity in income and power….which violate all proposed values.
? Why is the concept “the ownership of the means of production” the axis of all or most socialist reform?
It is an odd thing to ask about parecon – where it is, as he notes, the shortest chapter and least central part of the exposition…and least determinative of the features of the economy, as well…
> And most importantly, is it correct to assume that if we eliminate private ownership of the means of production that egalitarian dreams will miraculously be fulfilled? Could it not be possible that the private ownership of the means of production is a necessary evil, without which no economic growth is possible? Historically, if no one ever owned and subsequently benefited from the ownership of the means of production, where would our society be?
Doesn't the book make the case that removing private ownership is not a panacea far more compellingly than this? And so on…