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Forum Post: "VOTE-WITH-YOUR-DOLLAR": a philosophical breadcrust tossed to prisoners

Posted 2 years ago on Feb. 12, 2012, 4:06 a.m. EST by lithosere (65)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

We are taught to think that political change comes about by thoughtfully redistributing our wages; that when we buy something, we are casting our vote to that business to keep doing what it does. This is a fallacy, the last resort of those who have been deprived of their humanity. We are not dollar redistributing machines, we are human beings, with love, sorrow, anger, and the will to fight. If we trust to "vote with our dollars," first of all, we do not live in a democracy. Income disparity allows the few to cast millions of ballots, and the many to cast only one, or none at all. Moreover, many are forced by utter necessity to "vote" for what they do not believe in. If I live in Los Angeles and drive a car, I am not "voting" for a car-culture, wars in the Middle East, and climate change. I am doing what I must to survive in a city built to make cars necessary. Demand is manufactured by the powerful, and this is out of our control.

As beings with a moral capacity in an a-moral universe, we have the responsibility to use our reason, emotion, and observation to define right and wrong and fight for what we believe to be true. We can fight with our bodies and must not be confined to playing the insidious game of capitalism in order to create the world we want.

5 Comments

5 Comments


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[-] 1 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 2 years ago

Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat on a bus in 1955. This led to the Montgomery bus boycott that was effective in ending segregation on those buses. The ammunition used in this battle was their dollars. Withholding them until they forced the bus company to provide them with equal treatment.

Elections were ineffective in bringing about change then, just as it is now. They had to bypass the normal voting process and instead vote with their dollars, refusing to ride the buses until they obtained justice!

Withholding our dollars is a powerful way to bring about change, in addition to protest, civil disobedience, and other methods. Capitalism is not our enemy, injustice is, and the fuel that powers injustice is money! Wherever there is injustice, cut off it's lifeblood, and it will be forced to conform to the will of the people.

[-] 1 points by shooz (18019) 2 years ago

You'll never get this one "buy" the libe(R)tarians.

They act as though "truth in profits" actually exists.

[-] 1 points by lithosere (65) 2 years ago

this is not a distinction between libertarians and the rest. Actually liberals are the most dogmatic people I know on this topic, with their Prius/CFL/canvas-shopping-bag/biodegradable-towel-rack fanaticism that borders on religious obsession. The only groups I know who don't subscribe to this are on the radical left, and often even they too do, with philosophies like veganism (exclusing the ALF types).

[-] 1 points by shooz (18019) 2 years ago

I'm a liberal and I own none of those things and I love a good cheeseburger.

At the same time, I'm agreeing with you about the fallacy of "voting" with your dollar.

"Dollar voting", is a cornerstone of libe(R)tarian philosophy. One they repeat over and over.

[-] 1 points by lithosere (65) 2 years ago

my point though, and I suppose you are my only audience for it, is not to just cast our philosophies by the wayside because we can never fix the world. I am a vegan, I use biodiesel, I buy practically nothing. But what I have to remember—and what others like me might do well to realize—is that this is useful only insofar as it makes us feel stronger emotionally, and so more ready to act in the real world, with our bodies.