[Marxism] Forwarded from Victor R.
lnp3 at panix.com
Tue Dec 14 07:10:26 MST 2004
I don't trust Kevin Danaher and Global Exchange... isn't "fair trade" just
another form of exploitation, albeit the rate of exploitation is
less?? Isn't selling "crafts" produced by people in the Global South to
run one's "co-op" and multimillion dollar NGO just as reprehensible as a
corporation seeking profit??
Also, I think NGOs and corporations collaborating to "improve" working
conditions is a bad idea. It doesn't build worker's autonomy and political
consciousness... effectively you have a passive worker's movement dependant
on a burocratic, Western, white, middle class elite for minimal (if any!!)
gains in their working conditions. All in all, this doesn't help our
movement in the long run.
Also, the SF Chronicle that Lou Pro posted pointed out the fact that these
NGOs are directly limited politically by the capitalist system on what
politics and parties they can promote. So, what the heck is the point??
A Better Strategy: organizations help build international union
solidarity, with workers everywhere actively communicating and working on
improving their wages, work hours, health care, and mobilizing at the
local, regional, national and international levels (demonstrating and
striking together when the time demands it). An example of this is the
international Coke Boycott, although in a very embryonic form of what I am
When corporations get pissed and seek through capital flight to leave a
country, workers say goodbye and occupy the factories and land...hopefully
they have a political process (in contrast to Naomi Klein's
"non-ideological/political" strategy that she promotes in "The Take") by
which they defend themselves from the cap. state and, eventually, dismantle
it. From there they can, with the help of organic intellectuals, figure
out how to build local/regional economies that are sustainable, especially
at the agricultural level. But for this to be possible, international
solidarity and cooperation is crucial.
What you think? I am interested in hearing Lou Pro's opinion. Also,
anyone recommend any good books critiquing so-called "fair trade" and the
corrupt NGOs that promote it.
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