The Corporate Capture of Social Change

“If we want things to stay as they are, things will have to change”

Anand Giridharadas isn’t afraid of controversy. His debut book Winner Takes All is a blistering take down of the faith put in the biggest beneficiaries of capitalism to lead capitalism’s reform and change the world for the better.

Be it the next Silicon Valley start up or philanthropic foundation, the underlying assumption pushed by the rich is always that business, entrepreneurship and the private sector are the most efficient and effective means of tackling society’s collective problems.

Giridharadas describes how even the language of social change which has historically been associated with grassroots movements, social justice and mass protest has been colonised by market logic and the billionaire class.

Rather than discussing social change as being rooted in rights, justice and systemic reform, the new corporate conception of social change sees inequality, climate change and poverty as a set of technical problems with market solutions. For these people  fixing the world is not about challenging powerful interests and overhauling a rigged economic system but about empowering “global leaders and opinion formers” to leverage “capital, data and technology to improve lives.”

What this actually means is cutting the public out of decision making for what the future should look like. Instead of community leaders, unions and businesses engaging in dialogue to decide whats best for their communities, we are instead told to look to McKinsey consultants and Goldman Sachs analysts to crunch numbers and provide reports on how to “restructure” the economy, to prepare for “inevitable” disruption and spur economic growth.

The glaring contradiction of putting the winners of our broken economy in charge of its repair is that the winners are actually quite comfortable with the status quo. Why would Goldman Sachs want solutions to social change if social change threatens their status, money and power?

By capturing social change within their control they are able to ensure social change is not pursued at all. Angel Gurria secretary General of the OECD describes the top down approach as “changing things on the surface so that in practice nothing changes at all.”

[END of part 1]

 

 

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Is First Lady a Demeaning Role?

 

What is the role of First Lady? Is it a dated, patriarchal role or has it evolved into something worthwhile and meaningful?

The first lady’s role has never been codified or officially defined in the U.S, yet she figures prominently in the political and social life of the nation. Since 1790s the role of first lady has changed considerably. It has come to include involvement in political campaigns, management of the White House, championship of social causes, and representation of the president at official and ceremonial occasions.

In this powerful clip, we see how Michelle Obama has evolved the role of First Lady and has been a hugely significant and resonating force of the White House. She has refused to accept that Trump bragging about sexual assault is another blip in the election campaign but has called on women and men alike to truly contemplate the horrific, magnitude of the Trump Tapes.

 

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Vulture Funds Laugh as Schools & Hospitals Close in a Decimated Puerto Rico

Brave New Films documents the unrelenting destruction & decimation of Puerto Rico. As Vulture funds close down schools & hospitals to extract every last drop of profit from the impoverished territory.

The film further documents the indifference of The Obama Administration to the grave crisis.