The Ruling Elite Will Incite American Youth Through Social Networking to Protest Just Like Their Counterparts Around the World
This is exactly what the ruling elite of the shadow government want in their push for a one-world socialist government which in reality will be totalitarian.
Cass Sunstein, a friend of President Barack Obama from their faculty days at the University of Chicago law school, and who has been writing about group polarization since the 1990s, was appointed Administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs in the Obama Administration in January 2009. It is interesting to note that he is author of 'Going to Extremes: How Like Minds Unite and Divide', copyright 2009. In this book, Sunstein says:
"When people find themselves in groups of like-minded types, they are especially likely to move to extremes. And when such groups include authorities who tell group members what to do, or who put them into certain social roles, very bad things can happen. This is a general fact of social life: Much of the time, groups of people end up thinking and doing things that group members would never think or do on their own. When people talk together, what happens? Do group members compromise? Do they move toward the middle of the tendencies of their individual members? The answer is now clear, and it is not what intuition would suggest: Groups go to extremes. More precisely, members of a deliberating group usually end up at a more extreme position in the same general direction as their inclinations before deliberation began. This is the phenomenon known as group polarization."
By Henry A. Giroux, t r u t h o u t
February 28, 2011
One has no choice but to do all in one's power to change that fate and at no matter what risk -- eviction, imprisonment, torture, death. For the sake of one's children, in order to minimize the bill that they must pay, one must be careful not to take refuge in any delusion. - James Baldwin(1)
- Fifty thousand students took to the streets in London to protest tuition hikes, while "thousands of young people in Puerto Rico and Ireland are marching against cuts to student funding and fee increases."(2)
- Students in France and Greece are demonstrating with their bodies, confronting the police and registering their outrage over the imposition of severe austerity measures.
- In Spain and Italy, youth are challenging unemployment rates that have soared to 40 and 30 percent respectively.
- In Tunisia and Egypt, students have been at the forefront of uprisings that eventually led to the overthrow of authoritarian societies, which for too long forced young people to linger in a liminal space in which there were no jobs, no hope for the future and far too few freedoms.
'We don't want to pay for the crisis,' referring to the financial crisis that has turned ... labor market[s] from bad to worse. 'Where do I see my future? Certainly not in this country,' said protester, Morgana Proietti, expressing a common sentiment."(3)
"It was a protest against the narrowing of horizons; a protest against Lib Dem hypocrisy; a protest against the increasingly utilitarian approach to human life that sees degrees as nothing but 'investments' by individuals and denies any link between education and the broader social good."(8)
Giuliano Amato, a former Italian prime minister, in an interview with the country's largest newspaper, Corriere della Sera, makes clear that what students are protesting against involves more than economic issues. As he puts it, "they are also against a general situation in which the older generations have eaten the future of the younger ones."(9)
In capitalist countries worldwide, young people are sandwiched between the increasingly impossible expense of schooling and the dried-up job market. Youth unemployment rates are staggering. They are above 40 percent in Spain, 30 percent in Italy and an average of 20 percent for the European Union overall. In North Africa, unemployment of recent university graduates is almost 27 percent in Morocco and over 19 percent in Algeria. A third of all Arab youth are unemployed.... Corporations and employers have also moved to a more exploitative model of temporary work contracts, unpaid internships and part-time employment. This liquidizes the young labor force, allowing companies to hire and fire at will, without the responsibility of providing job security or benefits. Many young people are forced to live at home in rich countries -- unable to afford to live independently. In poorer states, they peddle goods on the street to survive.(13)
Youth have been condemned to "a new modernity in which there can be only one kind of value, market value; one kind of success, profit; one kind of existence, commodities; and one kind of social relationship, markets."(15) The global recession has intensified the war on youth, as professionals and politicians who make up a global business class now displace democracy with austerity and, in doing so, produce a hidden order of politics in which the "demand for the people's austerity hides processes of the uneven distribution of risk and vulnerability."(16)
The "coordinates of the sensible [and] bonds that enclose spectacles ... within the machine that makes the 'state of things' unquestionable."(18)Students and young people are now fighting back, affirming new modes of solidarity, forming alliances with workers and labor organizations and embracing a vision of democracy committed to economic and political equality. Most remarkably, this new generation of young people is able not only to think in terms that relate isolated problems to larger public considerations, but also to recognize the importance of a civic society that provides the formative culture necessary for self-governing democratic societies.
We were meant to be the first post-ideological generation, right? ... That never thought of anything bigger than our Facebook profiles and TV screens.... I think now that claim is quite ridiculous, now we've shown that solidarity and comradeship and all those things that used to be associated with students are as relevant now as they've ever been. We are now the generation at the heart of the fight-back.(21)
Those who are politically active tend to set their sights on distant horizons - the poor in India, say or the oppressed in Afghanistan.... Many of us from middle- and upper-income backgrounds have been socialized to believe that it is our duty to make a difference, but undertake such efforts abroad -- where the "real" poor people are. We found nonprofits aimed at schooling children all over the globe while rarely acknowledging that our friend from the high school football team can't afford the same kind of opportunities we can. Or we create Third World bicycle programs while ignoring that our lab partner has to travel two hours by bus, as he is unable to get a driver's license as an undocumented immigrant. We were born lucky, so we head to the bars - oblivious to the rising tuition prices and crushing bureaucracy inside the financial aid office.(23)
Conservative think tanks provide $20 million annually to the campus Right, according to the People for the American Way, to fund campus organizations such as Students for Academic Freedom, whose credo is "You can't get a good education if they're only telling you half the story" and boasts over 150 campus chapters. Providing an online complaint form for disgruntled students to fill out, the organization's website monitors insults, slurs and claims of more serious infractions that students claim to have suffered.
Similarly, the Intercollegiate Studies Institute, founded by William F. Buckley, funds over 80 right-wing student publications through its Collegiate Network, which has produced such media darlings as Dinesh D'Souza and Ann Coulter.
There is also the Leadership Institute, which trains, supports and does public relations for 213 conservative student groups who are provided with suggestions for inviting conservative speakers to campus, help starting conservative newspapers or training to win campus elections.
Or the Young Americans for Freedom, which sponsors various campus activities such as "affirmative action bake sales" where students are charged variously according to their race or ethnicity or announcements of "whites only" scholarships.(27)
"At Ohio University, several thousand students rioted in April 1998 for a second annual violent protest over the loss of an hour of drinking when clocks were officially set back at the beginning of daylight savings time; forced out of area bars, upset students hurled rocks and bottles at police, who knew to show up in full riot gear after the previous year's riot. The troops finally resorted to shooting wooden 'knee-knocker' bullets at the rioters to suppress them."(28)
European students have experienced a massive and bold assault on their lives, educational opportunities and their future. Moreover, European students live in societies where it becomes more difficult to collapse public life into largely private considerations. Students in these countries have access to a wider range of critical public spheres; politics in many of these countries has not collapsed entirely into the spectacle of celebrity/commodity culture; left-oriented political parties still exist; and labor unions have more political and ideological clout than they do in the United States. Alternative newspapers, progressive media and a profound sense of the political constitute elements of a vibrant, critical, formative culture and range of public spheres that have not erased the possibility to think critically, engage in political dissent, organize collectively and inhabit public spaces in which alternative and critical theories can be developed.
- Georgia cutting "state funding for higher education by $151 million";
- Michigan reducing "student financial aid by $135 million";(29)
- Florida raising tuition in its 11 public universities by 15 percent; and
- The University of California increasing tuition by 40 percent in two years.(30)
Democracy is about the conditions that make it possible for ordinary people to better their lives by becoming political beings and by making power responsive to their hopes and needs. What is at stake in democratic politics is whether ordinary men and women can recognize that their concerns are best protected and cultivated under a regime whose actions are governed by principles of commonality, equality and fairness, a regime in which taking part in politics becomes a way of staking out and sharing in a common life and its forms of self-fulfillment. Democracy is not about bowling together but about managing together those powers that immediately and significantly affect the lives and circumstances of others and one's self.(38)
"The tyranny of the moment makes it difficult to live in the present, never mind understand society within a range of larger totalities."(39)Under such circumstances, according to Theodor Adorno, thinking loses its ability to point beyond itself and is reduced to mimicking existing certainties and modes of common sense. Under such circumstances, thought cannot sustain itself and becomes short-lived, fickle and ephemeral. If young people do not display a strong commitment to democratic politics and collective struggle, it is because they have lived through 30 years of "a debilitating and humiliating disinvestment in their future," especially if they are marginalized by class, ethnicity and race.(40)
But trouble here exceeds dominant society's eagerness to view them as a pathology, as monsters and a drain on the market-driven order. Instead, trouble speaks to something more suggestive of a "productive unsettling of dominant epistemic regimes under the heat of desire, frustration or anger."(45) The expectations that frame market-driven societies are losing their grip on young people, who can no longer be completely seduced or controlled by the tawdry promises and failed returns of corporate dominated and authoritarian regimes.