Monday, November 14, 2011

#318 / A New Deal

I don't really play cards. Therefore, I probably don't fully understand all the intricacies and implications of the "new deal" metaphor. I was an American history major in college, and so I understand the "New Deal" not from the card player's perspective, but as a watershed moment in the political history of the United States.

Thinking about our current moment in history, I tend to believe that a "new deal" is exactly what we need. To me, that means calling a halt to the game currently being played, and taking all the money on the table, and putting it in the center as a new pot, available to all of us at the table right now, and then reshuffling and redealing the cards, and going from there.

As I say, this is probably not be what a "new deal" really means, to a card player. But in terms of politics, and thinking about our collective wealth as a collective asset, this might be exactly how a "new deal" would work.

William Greider, whose economic analyses always appeal to me, has just written an article in The Nation magazine that proposes what I'd call the right kind of "new deal" for America right now. Click on the link, it's worth reading. Greider is calling for "debt forgiveness, American style."

Right now, Greider suggests, we are "in the reverse New Deal," and while I may not really understand cards, I do understand the significance of reversing the New Deal. That means that the current game is unfair, and that ordinary people are being taken for a ride by those who are in control of the deck.

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