If every able citizen were incorporated to work adding value to the community, social justice would be guaranteed from the beginning, without having the huge challenge of chasing those who have the resources, to give back part of them.
What should be distributed?
Income, they reply. Such is the endemic drama of a global capitalism that does not cease to concentrate. Production factors such as capital, land, or even technology, are increasingly in the hands of fewer people as proportion of the total population and such patrimony generates incomes that go to the same hands, unless national States establish regulating and control mechanisms for setting a minimal equality. The dispute is present worldwide but is perceived with effects that are more painful by the dispossessed from low and medium-income countries.
Governments have assumed that there is only one way of distributing income. That is, taking the productive, financial, and service structure that is generated by the inertial evolution of capitalism as given and applying adequate taxes on it, while unionized workers have the freedom of discussing the variation on their salaries. As long as unionized workers obtain increases in their salaries above inflation and that an adequate fraction of taxes is applied to reinforce incomes of the less advantaged in the struggle, then, a base of justice to value and defend will be obtained. From that conceptual floor, it is about caring for the macroeconomic variables to prevent foreign currency problems or those of public funding or persistent inflation.
With its nuances, such has been the path undergone by almost every modern nation. However, the decades without wars made evident the limitations of such reasoning. The powerful created a structural framework of fiscal havens to elude their tax obligations, that leaves governments on the defensive, or even worse defeated. On top of that, finances hegemony has built a global casino where they gamble to make money only with money and where fortunes evaporate or change hands at amazing speed
Therefore, it is not simple to knock on the door of who has and ask him/her for the tithe for those who do not have, even with public authority. What is needed is to try making income distribution start from the very beginning when those incomes are generated. That is, changing the way in which we work. In other words, avoiding that those who have the most block production of the weakest, being in commercial, economic, financial or technological terms. Moreover, assuring the rights to work for every individual or group that believe they can produce goods or services that are useful for the rest of their fellow compatriots.
This democratizing view on production and services, taken to a coherent detailed application, implies stimulating and guaranteeing the production of basic goods for subsistence, as close as possible to where they are consumed. At the same time, it is necessary to facilitate the greatest possible linkage between producers and consumers by eliminating from the work culture the existence of intermediaries that can make business either with apples, sugar as with buying debt bonds.
This requires reinforcing each community’s capacity for addressing their urban-infrastructure needs with their own technical resources, particularly including the use of renewable energy. In addition, create a regional public development bank available to any plausible productive initiative.
It is necessary to make the public system of science and technology available for local industry to recover technological autonomy as long as our local development allows. Italian water-heaters gas burners, Brazilian or Israeli fridge compressors, Chinese electric scooters, Spaniard wind generators must become history, being displaced by national technology that has been annulled or neglected by official apathy.
In summary: If every citizen is incorporated to the labor market by adding value useful for the community, social justice is guaranteed from the beginning, without having the huge challenge of chasing those with resources to give back part of them.
To distribute income is above all distributing work. It is the basic credo of a popular project in today’s capitalism
*Institute for Popular Production
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