The majority of the offices we see, work or are offered for sale or as rentals are those of open spaces. In open-air offices, many employees work with their offices very close to one another.
In the beginning, the reasons for the creation of these open spaces were the rise in productivity, the creation of a collaborative working environment and creativity. In reality, however, the reason was different and the real reason was only the close monitoring of employees and the complete abolition of their privacy.
It is no coincidence, in support of the above, that in many of these open spaces, the supervisor is , usually found in a glazed cabin in which s/he retains some privacy in relation to ordinary employees, and can at the same time oversee others with his/her distinct role of power. This is about creating a modern production plant that has been transferred to the service sector. These spaces, however, create problems.
Especially for high-performance employees who need quietness to concentrate on their work, open spaces with the bustle created by other employees are an inappropriate environment for them. Things are even worse for introverts (50.7% of the population) who need their own space, the continued presence of others “above their heads” may be a martyrdom. If a colleague likes listening to music, then martyrdom may be worse.
But besides sonic pollution there is also visual contamination, that is, the continuous movements of others distract attention, productivity vanishes. People do not want to be in constant and close contact with others at the workplace and it has been noticed that good employee absenteeism increaAlternatively, office spaces with glass partitions can be created in the case where it is not possible to have separate offices. It is also possible for the employee to work from home and one day a week to be in the company’s offices so that he is not isolated from his colleagues. All of these are different proposals that are discussed at times and some businesses have done them, especially homework.ses and productivity is further reduced.
These data have been confirmed by a lot of of research. More specifically, everyday 86′ work are lost due to the various inconveniences that occur in open space workplaces and 23′ per employee are needed to recover from these inconveniences. Productivity decreases by 15% and employee welfare is reduced by 32%. Let us not, of course, discuss the easy contamination of illnesses among employees. According to a 2011 research in Denmark, the likelihood of an employee getting ill in these places increases by 62%.
Open space offices may be appropriate for sales departments but not for other types of jobs. The solution proposed internationally is working from home, something that with the current technological advancement is absolutely feasible.
This way, the company saves money from renting premises and employees become more productive. Alternatively, office spaces with glass partitions can be created in case where it is not possible to have separate offices. Employees may also work from home and one day a week to be in the company’s premises so that not become alienated from his colleagues. All these are different proposals that are discussed at times and some enterprises have implemented them, especially working from home.
However, in this case, the balance between personal and professional life needs to be reconsidered because it has been noticed that home turns into an office with all the negative effects it can have on the employee’s family life.
“What is the current price of an honest man and patriot today? They are ambiguous and saddened, and they sometimes make appeals, but they do nothing decisive and effective. They are expecting, well-intentioned, that someone else will correct the evil so that there is no longer any sorrow for them. At best, they sacrifice only a cheap vote, and a tiny support and hope for good success, for the right as they see it. “
Henry David Thoreau in his essay “On the Duty of Civil Disobedience” supported being disobedient to an unfair state. His ideas were influenced by Mahatma Gandhi and also by the minister Martin Luther King Jr., who championed disobedience and resistance in a non-violent way. Strikes, symbolic protests, the boycott of products, refusal to pay (see taxes, tolls, etc.) are peaceful methods of resistance and civil disobedience. Usually, the peaceful struggle is outside the existing political system and requires mass mobilization.
According to research, major peace campaigns were more successful compared to violent resistance campaigns.
Gandhi succeeded in mass mobilizing his people because he created the vision of independence of the Indians from the British colonialists. This vision, which has also been transposed through Gandhi’s continuous teachings, has succeeded in achieving social solidarity with the Indian people and reducing the gap among social classes in India.
Massive mobilization was also achieved by the minister Martin Luther King Jr. on August 28, 1963, with the March on Washington, where 250,000 protesters participated.
In this March, he gave his famous “I Have a Dream” speech. Martin Luther King was arrested and wrote from prison the famous “Letter from Birmingham” in which he called for civil disobedience against unjust laws. The Kennedy government understood the explosive situation that had been created, and in 1964the Human Rights Law passed.
It is important to note that, according to analysts, the problem was not created by the ones that were opposed to the rights of black people but by the moderate supporters calling for restraint, thus triggering the rise of the violent resistance of the blacks i.e. Black Panthers.
This point is very much in line with what Thoreau wrote: “Those who, while condemning the character and measures of a government, give it their submission and support are undoubtedly its most conscientious supporters, and thus they are often the most serious obstacles to the reform “.
Resistance campaigns are successful if they are large-scale, gain support from security forces and civil servants and, if possible, have support from abroad but from prestigious groups that will not harm the credibility of the campaign.
Support by mass media is also important, as it was the case with the Martin Luther King Jr. ‘s March on Washington, which was widely covered by the media. In the event that the media do not help with the provision of independent news and right technology then the “weight” falls into the independent voices i.e. on the Internet, blogs, portals, alternative YouTube channels, social media, etc. Peace activists also emphasize the importance of distributing educational material (books, DVDs, brochures, etc.) that will inform the audience about the results of previous peaceful campaigns. Activists emphasize that this is particularly important for the mobilization, namely teaching and information (Gandhi’s example with continuous teachings confirms this fact).
We live in an era of economics where democracy is now going away for the benefit of the global financial sector. Autocratic regimes will try to stifle peaceful reactions through Internet monitoring, as well as other means such as oppression through prohibitive laws and even intimidating citizens.
Will the modern citizen allow it or is s/he so alienated that does not resist anymore? Why is there no longer a leadership that has a vision and can mobilize people? Is it maybe because leadership is equally alienated? Is it vain to hope for leadership when the social movements all around the world are massive and not led by someone?
The questions arising from the lack of peaceful mobilization and civil disobedience are many and it would be interesting to further search them to find an answer.
In recent years, there have been many articles in the press on polymaths. Specialization has prevailed in all scientific fields which have been fragmented.
For instance, economic science is now divided into sub-fields such as business administration, finance, accounting, macroeconomics etc.
It could be suggested that this persistence in specialization is also the reason for the declining course of activities not associated with it. For example, piano and French do not exist as a necessary education for the bourgeoisie, they belong to the past. People learn foreign languages mainly as a means to find a better paid job and not because they are keen on them and the national culture they represent. Learning to play a musical instrument is considered a hobby and not part of basic education. The same is true to everything related to art and culture and the lack of it has brought negative consequences for society and living quality.
Being a polymath today resembles a little to what Aristotle or Leonardo da Vinci were. Its concept is different since it means having the knowledge of several scientific objects but not the depth required by the specialization. Polymaths, even in the recent past, were “punished” by business and headhunters. They were considered as not “focused” in a field, they could not be classified. The repercussions for businesses and organizations are visible and negative in particular in their struggle to find a competitive advantage through the recruitment of talent and polymaths are real talents.
This debate on the return of polymaths is surprising because it is self-evident that over-specialization prevents the global view of things, people become one-dimensional and persistent in what they know.
Polymaths have this comprehensive view and can find solutions more easily. In practice, this is obvious in scientific fields such as marketing which requires a good knowledge of sociology, psychology, mathematics, economics, informatics and statistics, otherwise it can not be applied successfully.
Similarly, the lack of polymaths can be seen in decisions about the economy that do not take into account the historical, social and cultural elements of the society in which financial measures are imposed and thus there is no strategic thinking.
The lack of polymaths is surprising in our era where by a simple search on the Internet questions are answered and numerous opportunities on learning different subjects exist – from foreign languages to computer programming. The advent of Artificial Intelligence and machine deep learning will definitely eliminate all routine repetitive jobs such as data entry etc. Some people think that being a polymath is a way to survive in the world of Artificial Intelligence and will be easier to find a job. In particular, being a polymath is considered to offer flexibility since people are obliged to work, during their lifetime, in many different jobs.
Consequently, being a polymath becomes more compulsive, however, it lacks the element of search and curiosity that Aristotle and Leonardo da Vinci had or even the element of a basic bourgeois culture, while, on the contrary, it will be a means for professional survival unless polymaths will be a medium-term transition before the complete domination of the machines.
According to researchers, the ideology born in 2011 is a mix of cyber-anarchism, anti-globalization and populism like the one emerged in Russia and America in the late 19th century.
We all know the Anonymous mask, a symbol of the new type of revolution (anarcho-populism), a symbol that we have seen in the streets of Cairo and elsewhere. The new ideology that has emerged is grounded in the anti-globalization movements that emerged in the 1990s but also in 2000. Movements that rejected the power of the media and promoted the idea of collectiveness through popular assemblies in each neighborhood. There is, however, a significant difference between the anti-globalization movements and the movements of the squares, such as those who have been resurrected in Greece, etc.
The anti-globalization movement was, of course, against global neo-liberalism and its main exponents, such as the International Monetary Fund, the World Trade Organization, etc. while the square movements, as we experienced with the Aganaktismenoi in Greece, were directed mainly against the domestic oligarchy of the political system. Ideological purity, simply, did not exist. Common people were involved in the movements of the squares, where they discussed publicly and shared their thoughts with others, and their goal was more justice and transparency from the political system.
The “contract” between rulers and the people has been broken due to the economic crisis.The creation of artificial economic crises by the neo-liberal elites, the so-called rescue programs that do not eventually save anyone, have led millions of people to poverty and impoverishment (Greece is a living example).Governments no longer guarantee prosperity, not even the viability of their citizens, and freedom is limited.
The new movements and the new ideology mainly use social media to spread messages to mobilize furious citizens and protect them from austerity measures (see anti-auction movement in Greece).The communication campaigns of these movements reveal the political and economic scandals, the middle-class poverty and the oppression of the government.
system is created – common people against the elites, common people who seek democracy and battle totalitarianism.The relationship with the Left is now competitive, therefore the Left fights these movements.In the economy, the main axes are to provide social services and guarantee a minimum wage, while, contrary to the globalization movements that await the end of capitalism, the new ideology emphasizes the end of inequalities, mainly at national/local level.
The existing political system cannot match this new ideology and, in my opinion, it is wrong to consider this new ideology as populist in the sense of chauvinistic nationalism.
Failure to understand this new ideological framework will also be the cause of the collapse of many political parties and coalitions that exist today.In Greece, this collapse is seen through mass contestation and the creation of many small parties,
which, however, do not quite understand these changes, but they think in an old-fashioned political way.
World changes, a change so radical that causes unrest.The new reality has not yet been shaped, but it will, perhaps after very painful processes, be created hoping for better living terms for people.
In the market economy, the financial system gives money from the positive
savers (i.e. depositors) to the negative savers (i.e. people with shortage of funds which need loans to buy property etc.). Furthermore, the financial systems facilitate non-cash payments. from individuals or legal entities.
The financial system has by law a monopoly of services. Only banks can accept deposits, only insurance companies can provide insurance services and mutual funds management can be done better by a large bank rather than by an individual investor.
How money is created
In the past, one of the reasons the ancient Greek states were strong was the ability to create their own currency. In the times of Pericles, the silver Drachma was the reserve currency of that era. The same applied for the golden currency of Philippe from Macedonia. Each of these currencies could have been exchanged with a certain amount of gold.
Nowadays, Fed creates USD and ECB Euro which both is fiat money i.e money with no intrinsic value that has been established as real money by government regulation and we, therefore, have to accept it as real money. Central banks circulate coins and paper money in most countries that they are just 5%-15% of the money supply, the rest is virtual money, an accounting data entry.
Depending on the amount of money central banks create, we live in a crisis or we have economic development. It should be noted that central banks are not state banks but private companies. The countries have given the right of issuing money to private bankers. In turn, these private central banks lend the states with interest and therefore, have economic and of course, political power. The paper money circulated in a country is actually public debt i.e. countries owe money to the private central bankers and the payment of this debt is ensured by issuing bonds. The warranty given by the government to private central bankers for debt repayment is the taxes imposed on people. The bigger public debt is the bigger the taxes, the more common people suffer.
The presidents of these central banks cannot be fired by the governments and do not report to the governments. In Europe, they report to ECB which sets the monetary policy of EU. ECB is not controlled by the European Parliament or the European Commission.
The state or borrower issues bonds, in other words, it accepts that it has an equal amount of debt to the central bank which based on this acceptance creates money from zero and lends it with interest. This money is lent through an accounting entry however, interest rate does not exist as money in any form, it is just on the loan contract obligations. This is the reason why global debt is bigger than real or accounting debt. Therefore, people become slaves since they have to work to get real money to pay off debts either public or individual debts. Very few ones manage to pay off the loan but the rest get bankrupted and lose everything.
When a country has its own currency as it is the case of the USA and other countries, it can “oblige” central bank to accept its state bonds and lend the state with interest. Therefore, a country bankruptcy is avoided since the central bank acts as a lender of last resort. ECB is another case since it does not lend Eurozone member-states. The non-existence of a Europe safe bond leaves the Eurozone countries at the mercy of the “markets” which by being afraid of not getting their money back they impose high interest rates. However, quite recently the European safe bonds have gained ground despite the differences in Europe policymakers whereas the Germans are the main cause for not having this bond since they do not want national obligations to be single European ones. There is also another reason (probably the most serious one) which is that by having this bond, Euro as a currency would be devaluated and Germany’s borrowing interest rates would rise.
In the USA things are different since the state borrows its own currency (USD) from Fed so local currency is devaluated and therefore state debt is devaluated. When a currency is devaluated the products of a country become cheaper without reducing wages but imported products become more expensive. A country which has a strong primary (agriculture) and secondary (industry) sector can become more competitive by having its own currency provided that it has its own energy sources i.e. it should be energy sufficient. Banks with between $16 million and $122.3 million in deposits have a reserve requirement of 3%, and banks with over $122.3 million in deposits have a reserve requirement of 10%. Therefore, if all depositors decide to take their money from the banks at the same time, banks cannot give it to them and bankrun is created. At this point, it should be mentioned that for each USD, Euro etc deposited in a bank, the banking system creates and lends ten. Banks create money each time they give loans and the money they create is money that appears on the computer screen, not real money deposited in the bank’s treasury that lends it. However, the bank lends virtual money but gets real money plus interest from the borrower.
As Professor Mark Joob stated no-one can escape from paying interest rates. When someone borrows money from the bank, s/he has to pay interest rates for the loan but all who pay taxes and buy goods and services pay the interest rate of the initial borrower since taxes have to be collected to pay the interest rates of the public debt. All companies and individuals that sell goods and services have to include the cost of loans in their prices and this way the whole society subsidizes banks although part of this subsidy is given as interest rate to depositors. Professor Mark Joob goes on and writes that the interest rate paid to the banks is a subsidy to them since the fiat/accounting money they create is considered as legal money. This is why bankers have these large salaries and this is why the banking sector is so huge, it is because the society subsidizes banks.
Concerning interest rates, poor people usually have more loans than savings whereas rich people have more saving than loans. When interest rates are paid, money is transferred from poor to the rich therefore, interest rates are favourable for wealth accumulation. Commercial banks gain from investments and from the difference between interest rates for deposits and interest rates for loans. When interest rate is added regularly to the initial investment, it brings more interest since there is compound interest which increases exponentially initial capital. Real money by itself is not increased since this interest rate is not derived from production. Only human labour can create interest rate of increasing value but there is a downward pressure for salaries cost and at the same time increase of productivity. This happens because human labour needs to satisfy the demands of exponentially increased compound interest.
The borrower has to work to get the real money, in other words, banks lend virtual money and get real money in return. Since the lent money is more than the real one, the banks should create new money in the form of loans and credits. When they increase the quantity of money there is growth (however, even in this case with the specific banking and monetary system debt is also increased) but when they want to create a crisis, they stop giving loans and due to the lack of money a lot of people bankrupt and depression starts.
This is a “clever trick” created by the bankers who have noticed that they can lend more money than the one they have since depositors would not take their money, altogether and at the same time, from the banks. This is called fractional reserve banking. The definition given by Quickonomics for fractional reserve banking is the following: “Fractional reserve banking is a banking system in which banks only hold a fraction of the money their customers deposit as reserves. This allows them to use the rest of it to make loans and thereby essentially create new money. This gives commercial banks the power to directly affect money supply. In fact, even though central banks are in charge of controlling money supply, most of the money in modern economies is created by commercial banks through fractional reserve banking”.
Are savings protected?
In the case of Italian debt as in the case of Greek debt, we have heard from politicians (actually paid employees by the bankers) that they want to protect people’s savings. However, are these savings protected in this monetary and banking system? The answer is a simple NO. As mentioned, the banks have low reserves in cash. This is the reason that they need their customers’trust. In case of a bankrun there would face liquidity problems and they would bankrupt. There are deposit guarantee schemes that reimburse, under EU rules, that protect depositors’ savings by guaranteeing deposits of up to €100,000 but in case of chain reactions, commercial banks need to be saved by the governments and central banks act as lenders’ of last resort.
The economic system as it is shaped by the power of banks is not viable and it does not serve human values such as freedom, justice and democracy. It is irrational and should be immediately changed if we want humanity to survive.
Globalization is characterized by the mobility of capital, employees and goods. The neo-liberal principles of Reagan and Thatcher and their followers, Clinton and Blair, have had a great impact on labour relations contributing to the shrinkage of trade unions. With these principles, trade unionists have been presented as corrupt and state social care has been reduced and privatized. State intervention in labor market through subsidization of job positions, reduction of weekly working hours, employee training etc, has also been reduced since it is thought that labor market is inflexible, reduces competitiveness and profit margins causing increased inflation.
The School of Regulation argues that the 1970’s Fordism crisis (Fordism model was based on product standardization, mechanization of processes, scientific organization of labor and production chain) has lead to a meta- Fordian model where steady salaried labour is discouraged and flexible working relationships are emerging.
With this, employers arose as clear winners with decreased wages to pay out and reduced labor rights to contend with. They have also institutionalized flexible work policies transferring risk and insecurity to workers. Nicos Poulantzas, the Greek political philosopher, has been proved correct. In his book “State, Power, Socialism” he wrote about the role of the state as a central power acting in the interests of the bourgeoisie. With the state on capital’s side, enterprises has been given free reign, allowed to operate as a single social force dominating labour.
Even for highly qualified workers, economic and social mobility is limited. Alexandre Afonso, in his related article “How Academia resembles a Drug Gang”, reflects on the current academic life of young PhDs and argues that the academic labor market is structured in many ways as a drug gang, where low level drug dealers risk their lives and exchange their current income for an uncertain future enrichment; similarly, young PhDs agree to work under precarious terms as “external” associates of university departments, assuming a part of the tasks of the “core of the initiates”, especially teaching, and under increasing pressure of research and publications, in order to secure a permanent position in the future. This “incentive” system benefits universities at an international level as they base their work to a certain extent on the ever-growing “reserve army” of academics working with occasional contracts.
Precariousness is the non-self-defining insecurity in all areas of life and work. People in a precarious position are afraid for their survival, and this fear becomes a tool of manipulation by employers, aiming at, according to Pierre Felix Bourdieu (French sociologist and philosopher who was primarily concerned with the dynamics of power in society), forcing employees to obey and accept their own exploitation .
Employees are forced to adapt to these new work frameworks, otherwise, they are marginalized. This marginalization is also related to the concept of the Henri Lefebvre (a French Marxist philosopher and sociologist) region where social regions are created, e.g. the women whom central authority marginalizes (among other groups) and isolates them in mental, social and geographic areas. Nowadays, the employee suffers the “hell of no guarantees” as Guattari and Negri wrote in their book “Communists like us”. Work is purchased and sold as separate time packages and salary does not cover all human needs but only the price of the package.
The refusal of the state to protect its citizens in favour of the principles of neo- liberalism is hidden behind the demonization of whole peoples where the concept of collective responsibility is cultivated to persuade people to consent to the forced austerity.
The concept of individual responsibility is also used against the poor as poverty is not seen as a consequence of social class. According to Milton Friedman, the unemployed are unemployed because of “individual behaviors determined by these erroneous assessments of economic reality and erroneous expectations for its evolution”.
Precarious work is not something modern but something old that was theorized by Marx and Engels in the Communist Manifesto:
“The interests and living conditions of the proletariat are more equalized by the fact that the machine increasingly extinguishes discrimination in the workplace and pushes almost everywhere wages at an equally low level. The increasing competition among the bourgeoisie and the trade crises provoked by this competition makes workers’ salary increasingly unstable. Uninterrupted and faster machine perfections makes their position increasingly precarious. Conflicts between the individual worker and the individual bourgeois are increasingly taking the feature of clashes between the two classes.”
The “precariat” in the post-industrialist society is what proletariat was in the industrial era.
Does precarious work signify a new social class?
Those in precarious work do not constitute a separate social class, they remain part of the labor class. Guy Standing supports that it is not a new social class but a class to be. In Latin America the class of occasional workers, unemployed or self –employed was called “first-proletariat”.
Karl Marx named the unemployed “industrial back-up army”: “This overpopulation of labor is an available industrial back-up army, which belongs to the capital as thoroughly as if the capital had done it at its own expense. It creates for the alternating needs of its exploitation the ever-ready exploitable material, regardless of the limits of the real population growth.”
Guy Standing has written that “the working class”, the “workers” and the “proletariat” have been terms embodied in our spiritual and social culture for several centuries. People could define themselves in terms of social class. In addition, on these terms, other people could recognize them, depending on how they were dressed, how they talked and how they were acting. Today, these are just more than labels that bring to mind things of the past.
He considers class stratification as being more complex than in Marx’s era: “While the old social classes still exist in some parts of the world, we can now identify four groups. At the top is an elite, which consists of a small number of irrationally wealthy world-wide citizens that dominate the planet … Under this elite is the class of the permanent and well-paid salaried employee of the “white collar” , those who still enjoy stable and full employment … At the same time, in interaction with this salaried class, there is the (at present) smaller group of proficians. This term combines the traditional terms of “professional” and “technician” … Under the proficians … there is a shrinking “core” of manual workers, in fact, they are the old “working class”. Under these four groups, there is the ever-growing “precariat”, framed by an army of unemployed and by a disconnected group of socially weak, unadjusted, living by the “remains of society”.
Standing follows a Weberian approach to the classes where classes are determined by the social status beyond their relationship to the productive process.
However, the “precariat” arepart of the working class, a working class that no longer has control over the production as stated by Gorz : “Marx was mistaken … Automation and later on IT abolish and initiation abilities and replace, what is left from workers and skilled employees with a new type of skilled workers. The rise of professional workers, their strength in the factory, their anarcho-syndicalist perspective will be only a parenthesis that will be closed by Taylorism and then the “scientific organization of work” and at the end, information technology and robotics.”
The “precariat” is characterized by the precariousness of work, but precariousness does not separate it from the rest of the working class with which it has no conflicting interests. As Jean Claude Michea stated : “… that happens precisely because the “proletarian” – the term belongs to Sismondi — has only, theoretically, its “working power” (in other words, deprived, as wrote by Engels, “from the last remnants of an independent activity”), drew on his face and existence all the inhuman effects of totalitarian uprooting (“job insecurity”is one of the possible names of this absolute deprivation)”.
Precariat’s work is characterized by the sense of “urgency”. This is supported by the inclusion of the precariat in the working class because, according to the viewpoint of the situationalists, the working class contains all those who can not control their daily life in the time-spatial organization of society.
Everyone can be a “precarian”
Despite the fact that at first precarious work concerned primarily younger people, older people become part of it, but also those who previously belonged to the middle socio-economic class of the population. As mentioned by Hardt & Negri : “A new form of poor emerges, that does not only include the unemployed and precarious part-time workers, but also the stable salaried employees and the bankrupted strata of the so-called middle class.”
The professional environment of the precariat is characterized by “labor flexibility” with corresponding “flexibility” in the worker’s behavior. This “flexibility” is praised as a solution to the problem of unemployment and adaptation to the demands of the new era. According to Bourdieu “flexibility” or “precariousness” nowadays prevails everywhere.
This article was originally published in Reformer: https://medium.com/reformermag/the-precarious-work-economy-ed320b9617a9
In the fourth human type of crisis, Hardt and Negri refer to the represented, who is the epitome of subjugation and corruption of the other three types, namely the indebted, the media man and the secured.
The represented expresses the model of parliamentary representative democracy, which, according to the writers (and not only), is essentially an obstacle to democracy, it is actually a “relative democracy”.
As we have seen in elections, someone who is not rich and / or sponsored by other rich people cannot be a candidate, thus relations of interdependence are formed. When someone is elected then his enrichment is facilitated by having access not only to the “tiny” MP salary but also to innumerable public works, supplies, etc. His impunity is also assured as we see in our country (Greece), unlike many other countries that keep some remnants of justice.
In order someone to “shine” in the elections, he must also control the media that highlight candidates who, as mentioned, are wealthy and / or funded by rich people.
The media are also the ones that foster fear by constantly referring to crimes, wars, economic measures, misery. All this contributes to being isolated, frightened, and apathetic. The rest of the media program, when it is not dominated by news of fear, consists of ridiculous “entertainment” programs and films aiming at mass devaluation and therefore easy manipulation.
Fear is also associated with the incredible collapse of structures and downward mobility. Middle class disappears, and much of it belongs now to the precariat having precarious with precarious jobs (they call it “flexible jobs” a way to hide the despair it causes) and uncertain wages. The middle class is no longer a uniform class something that is overlooked by the various politicians who want to represent it.
The state no longer protects private property, not even the public property- we notice that in our country (Greece) where the transformation of public debt into private means the extinction of every citizen’s property and its confiscation by the lenders (see auctions, excessive growth of taxation that leads in turn, to the liquidation of private real estate and bank accounts). Public property, which is the property of all Greek citizens, is constantly bought by foreigners, who are also beautifully called “investors”. The country has become a place, a place that simply accommodates people who were citizens in the past when these people do not decide to leave it.
So, the citizen, this represented citizen, does not participate anywhere, he is taken out of the political life, he is getting poorer and must survive in a working and social jungle.
Politics, as it stands, does not refer to him. The ironic statements of politicians who turn against the people are not accidental. They know that people are no longer important for them.
Yet even this fake democracy called representative collapses because a form of world governance is now emerging with everything that this entails.
The nation-states will be shells and will be consisted of many small autonomous regions without specific national characteristics (several of them, following orders, will be cut off from states – shells).
Social movements in Greece and abroad have raised the issue of the trap of representative democracy.
However, real democracy to emerge must be perceived as a concept by the citizens, who will create the subject that will make it true.