Monday, June 16, 2014

New Book by Sister Teresa Forcades, És a les nostres mans: Democracy Possible Only When Predatory Capitalism Is Overcome

At Iglesia Descalza, Rebel Girl offers a translation of an article at the website of the Spanish daily ABC announcing the publication of Sister Teresa Forcades's new book, És a les nostres mans (It's in Our Hands). The book was published by DAU of Barcelona, and is, I believe, available at present only in Catalan and Spanish editions. 

According to the ABC summary, the book argues that capitalism "in its most predatory version" accentuates "the free market, maximum profit, and the value of entrepreneurship," and this understanding of economic life diminishes the ability of human beings to cooperate in building a better world for all of us. Instead, it pits us against one another as rivals.

The problem with addressing the serious shortcomings of ruthless capitalism so evident to growing numbers of people everywhere in the world today is that the predatory version of capitalism has become completely intertwined with the political life of many nations, so that political leaders benefit from pitting us one against the other: Teresa Forcades asks,

"Can we talk about a free market when in reality capitalism, historically, has always gone hand in hand with political power?," wonders the nun who criticizes the "collusion between economic and political power" which she says "isn't transparent, isn't known or voted on by citizens."

And she concludes,

"We are faced with a poorly functioning democracy because of the clear collusion between the political and economic classes," she says. 
"Laws are approved that favor the interests of a minority, as opposed to the needs of the citizens, the majority," the nun emphasizes. 
"One of the most shocking facts that demonstrates this is the so-called 'revolving door', where public officials legislate in favor of certain sectors and then, when their term ends, go to work for the companies that profited while they were in power," concludes the nun and doctor, who proposes beginning a discussion period to open "an alternative to capitalism." 

Hence the title, It's in our hands: the cure for predatory capitalism cannot be left in the hands of the same governing elites who benefit largely from its predatory operations at the expense of everyone else. If there is any cure for this out-of-control economic system, it's in the hands of all the rest of us. 

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