Wednesday, March 10, 2021

909: Neoliberalism exposed again....

 What society do we want to live in? There is happening a lot in the world, things that threaten our way of life.


Our theme is the rough awakening from the neoliberal dream. That is not some personal idea of me. It is really happening. 


In the previous lecture I already pointed out some alternative options, but what is most exciting is, that neoliberalism and its beliefs are questioned at all levels. socially and politically.


The climate crisis and COVID-crisis have exposed its weak spots, its social inadequacy. Yet a majority of the traditional political parties support it.


Yet this social inadequacy is exposed frequently now. This time it was in my morning paper. You have to hear this. It is such a perfect example of the failing current situation.


The players: the Trade Union FNV, the meals delivery service Deliveroo, the government employment office UWV.


The background of the story is that Deliveroo exploits its employees by withholding them a decent legal position as worker. For that the FNV sued Deliveroo.


The author is professor Klara Boonstra, a Law Professor at the VU University Amsterdam. She tells us the following:


-QUOTE-When the FNV was found in the lower court in the Deliveroo case, it addressed several enforcement requests to the government. 


These were set aside on appeal. The labor inspectorate did not want to check the working conditions, 


the UWV did not want to establish an employment relationship and collect social security contributions and the tax authorities did not want to levy taxes. 


In other words, the government chose to keep the Deliveroo-platform's earnings model intact. Not a value-free choice! 


In this area too, the nineties principles of new regulatory governance and New Public Management have rendered workers and their unions powerless. 


The government did not act as an ally of the working party as the weaker party but of the economically powerful employer. 


This attitude of the government harms the whole of society. Our labor market is now structurally unfair on many points. 


This is a social problem that causes a lot of poverty and puts pressure on tax revenues and contributions to social funds. 


Good employers are disadvantaged by unfair competition. Social risks are passed on to the community. -END QUOTE-


The social injustice is exposed here, but yet there is happening something strange.. Next week there are elections for parliament in the Netherland.


If you look at the polls you would think, that voters will prefer those parties which focus on the social aspects: healthcare, education, the legal position of workers, minimum wage, the CO2-problem.


Some will say, typical left-wing themes and that is true, but the polls show an increase in popularity of right-wing parties.


I read an interesting explanation of this phenomenon. In general, a majority is for more money for healthcare, education, minimum wage, etc.


But yet they appear to vote for right-wing parties. How can that be? You see the same happen in the US as well as in Europe.


People don't focus primarily on social-economical issues these days. They focus on nationalist and cultural issues, their identity.


And by scaring the public with slogans like...Islamization is impending.....immigrants steal our jobs....the whole country stuffed with mosques.... a cultural take-over by immigrants...


the right-wing parties play on the fears of the public and lure it to their side, and with success. So there is still a lot of work to do.......


Thank you for your attention again....



MacMillan The Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 2nd edition
Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 1995
Gabriel van den Brink:"Ruw Ontwaken uit een Neoliberale Droom",, 2020




The Discussion


[13:13] herman Bergson: The floor is yours (not to take:-)

[13:14] herman Bergson: You fell asleep?

[13:14] herman Bergson: Or still reading? *_*

[13:14] PrincePansophic: This is what is sometimes referred to as 'identity politics,' yes?

[13:15] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): they do it the Hitler way when he told people that jews were child eating monsters and such to make everyone hate and murder them together with Hitler

[13:15] herman Bergson: Yes

[13:15] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): the right wings do more or less the same

[13:15] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): (shudders)

[13:15] herman Bergson: The remarkable thing is that those rightwing parties don't address economical subjects, but cultural ones

[13:16] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): yes

[13:16] herman Bergson: and that appeals to the public

[13:16] PrincePansophic: vilifying 'the other'

[13:16] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): us and them

[13:16] herman Bergson: yes....create an enemy...

[13:16] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): and "them" are evil

[13:16] CB Axel: It appeals to the part of the public that doesn't want to have to think.

[13:16] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): going back to ww2 age

[13:16] PrincePansophic: based on cultural differences

[13:16] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): NOT the right way!

[13:16] PrincePansophic: well said CB

[13:17] CB Axel: They just want to be told who the enemy is and vote against them.

[13:17] herman Bergson: Just look at what Reps in the US content at all but pointing at the enemy...the Dems....

[13:17] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): ah

[13:17] PrincePansophic: it makes it easier to say 'They did it, Get 'em!"

[13:17] herman Bergson: It happens here in Europe too

[13:18] CB Axel: We need to point out to voters the policies they are for and who in office has voted against those policies.

[13:18] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): there was a maniac (probably a taliban dude) trying to murder 7 people recently

[13:18] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): but because of that we cant turn agains everyone from these places like they are all evil

[13:18] CB Axel: Then we need to convince them not to vote for those pieces of shit again.

[13:18] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): but that is what is happening

[13:19] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): we are "pulling everyone over the same comb"

[13:19] CB Axel: I guess I'm just as bad, Bejiita. I consider all Republicans in the US as evil now. :)

[13:19] herman Bergson: ZERO Republican senators voted for the Relief Billl, tho 75% of the people support it, of which 59% of republicans

[13:20] CB Axel: Yep

[13:20] PrincePansophic: Welcome back.

[13:20] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): wb

[13:20] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):

[13:21] herman Bergson: Like John Locke already said...the government is there to protect the citizens....

[13:21] herman Bergson: in the present situation it is the other way around

[13:21] CB Axel: True.

[13:21] Oneeka Telling (music.nexen): ty

[13:21] herman Bergson: The citizens are a problem for the government...they only cost money

[13:21] CB Axel nods

[13:21] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): for them

[13:22] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): and their fat wallets

[13:22] CB Axel: That's why they try to keep us from voting.

[13:22] herman Bergson: More than 200 voting repression bills in 43 is really absurd

[13:22] herman Bergson: since November

[13:23] herman Bergson: I have no solution for this situation, but we may  say that something isn't right here

[13:24] herman Bergson: In what society do we want to live?

[13:24] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): hmm

[13:24] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): indeed

[13:24] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): the easiest

[13:24] herman Bergson: What means 'easiest' Beertje?

[13:25] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): the gemakkelijkste weg om nergens aan te denken

[13:25] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): aan te hoeven denken

[13:25] herman Bergson: A world in which you haven't to worry or think about anything.....

[13:25] herman Bergson: hmmmm

[13:26] CB Axel: Yes. Thinking is the problem. :)

[13:26] PrincePansophic: lol

[13:26] herman Bergson: I don't think man is like that....

[13:26] herman Bergson: Oops..there I was thinking....:-)

[13:26] PrincePansophic: Are we answering the question "Am I my brother's keeper?"

[13:27] herman Bergson: Interesting question Prince.....

[13:27] CB Axel: Yes we are. But too many people answer that with a no.

[13:27] Krias  (krias): May i ask who read Constitution of its country at least one time a year at home and in family ?

[13:27] herman Bergson: As a social being we live together, not as isolated individuals who only care for themselves, I would say

[13:28] PrincePansophic: Once a year no, but thank you. That is a good tradition to begin.

[13:28] CB Axel: I read parts of the US Constitution when they come up in the news.

[13:28] CB Axel: I read it more than I read the Bible. :)

[13:28] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): Tomorrow Prince?

[13:29] PrincePansophic: I concur Herman

[13:29] herman Bergson: I never read the constitution of my country...except Rule 1

[13:29] PrincePansophic: for Beertje, I just might.

[13:29] herman Bergson: Which is about freedom of speech, gathering, religion

[13:29] PrincePansophic: same here in this nation

[13:30] herman Bergson: But it is an interesting suggestion to read the whole thing some day :-))

[13:31] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): we have time enough since we can't go anywhere

[13:31] herman Bergson: yes

[13:31] PrincePansophic: I would love to compare

[13:31] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): true Beertje

[13:31] PrincePansophic: brb

[13:34] Krias  (krias): Constitution is the fundamentals of any country, the principles of how we live or behave together i believe.

[13:34] PrincePansophic: Our National Social Contract?

[13:34] herman Bergson: The point of today is that the government isn't there  to support the weak and powerless in society but to support the rich and powerful within the neoliberal is all about put it in a simple way

[13:34] Oneeka Telling (music.nexen): mhmm

[13:35] herman Bergson: The government has lost its contact with the citizen

[13:35] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): yep

[13:35] herman Bergson: Especially due to the New Public Management philosophy.....the state is a company and the citizen is a customer that only costs

[13:36] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): or that they can suck out from

[13:36] CB Axel: Do you feel that way in Sweden, Bejiita? That the government has lost contact with the citizens?

[13:36] herman Bergson: In the Netherlands it has....

[13:36] CB Axel: Or you, Bergie, in Austria?

[13:37] herman Bergson: We are regarded as potential frauds by our IRS and Social Services

[13:37] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): well both yes and no but indeed its always been a bit of a mix there but for sure many think of our government like a bunch of blubbering lying pie throwing idiots

[13:37] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): yes true :(

[13:37] herman Bergson: Especially when you have a non-Dutch family name

[13:38] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): that are just talking shit about each other insrterad of getting anything done, esp on the election days, then the cyanide spiced pies fly through the air

[13:38] CB Axel: That's so sad. Is the whole world being governed by self-serving morons?

[13:38] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): we live in a rich country, but many have to go to the foodbanks

[13:38] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): while i watch on the tv and just "sigh!"

[13:38] CB Axel: I realize that the US, Austria, Sweden, and the Netherlands is a small sample, but it's still sad.

[13:39] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): hmm

[13:39] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): its al about staying in power

[13:39] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): by clanking down on your opponents

[13:39] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): like it was a childs sandbox

[13:39] herman Bergson: Due to the focus on economic growth and the homo economicus government has lost contact with its citizens.....

[13:39] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): the Trump method

[13:40] herman Bergson: One scandal after another here caused by public servants of our IRS....

[13:41] herman Bergson: and it is about more than 10.000 people....

[13:41] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): yes i have read that

[13:41] herman Bergson: Ruined families, divorces, thrown into it....

[13:41] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): ooowww:(

[13:41] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): lost homes, poverty

[13:41] herman Bergson: yes

[13:41] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): horrible

[13:41] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): why?

[13:42] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): a sad story indeed

[13:42] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): real poverty, weekly only 40 euro or so

[13:42] herman Bergson: Because the government is a company Bejiita

[13:42] herman Bergson: and it has to achieve its targets....find 25 million of fraud  money among your citizens.....

[13:43] herman Bergson: that was the target...

[13:43] Krias  (krias): i think all disasters is the fault of government ! people we vote for is it ? and they are far from our concerns

[13:43] herman Bergson: The Tax Fraud team had to finance itself ....

[13:43] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): crazy

[13:44] herman Bergson: Just take the fact that ZERO Reps voted for the relief Bill....!

[13:44] herman Bergson: who are they serving??? Their constituents, their country....who?

[[13:45] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): they are not serving, they are ruining lives for all around them, the people

[13:46] bergfrau Apfelbaum: pfff mega crash

[13:46] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): wilkommen Bergie

[13:46] herman Bergson: It is obvious Bejiita....

[13:46] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): (unruines Bergie)

[13:46] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): there u go

[13:47] herman Bergson: Maybe next lecture we can talk about the possibilities of creating a better world :-)

[13:47] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): i hope so

[13:47] herman Bergson: And believe me....this debate is already on....

[13:48] herman Bergson: neoliberalism was never questioned it is from many sides

[13:48] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): ah

[13:48] Krias  (krias): i guess better not talk about new wold , this is what happens since 30 years

[13:48] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): and nothing happens still

[13:48] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): well

[13:48] herman Bergson: Yes Krias

[13:48] bergfrau Apfelbaum: i am not sure whether my text has still arrived......CB, there are too many poor people in Austria. but it wouldn't be necessary if the government saw it. I think it's the same everywhere. government money is used for nicer government chairs ....

[13:48] herman Bergson: But change is in the air...

[13:49] CB Axel: I hope so, Herman.

[13:49] bergfrau Apfelbaum: and who stole the chairs here??

[13:49] CB Axel: That's so sad, Bergie.

[13:49] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): the government

[13:49] Krias  (krias): better talk about now, the year of changes where billions appears to save and restructure entire companies for what ?

[13:50] herman Bergson: Economic growth, Krias.....the neoliberal mantra

[13:50] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): hmm

[13:50] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): and that mantra goes MORE MORE MORE!

[13:51] Krias  (krias): why are we willing to save companies ? loss of employment ? loss of creating growth ? since 30 years world growth is .. decreasing up to come t .. positive interest rate

[13:52] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): hmm

[13:52] Krias  (krias): what are we fighting ? pandemia effects than make us wondering of societies model ?

[13:52] herman Bergson: As this project is called.....A rough awakening from the neoliberal dream......

[13:53] herman Bergson: Yes...this pandemia shows the weak spots

[13:54] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): yes

[13:54] Krias  (krias): noeliberalism is a consequence in certain regions, some countries dont have problem of neoliberalism !

[13:54] herman Bergson: That is a complex matter Krias.....

[13:55] herman Bergson: Too complex to discuss here, I think

[13:56] herman Bergson: Here we also touch on the issue of globalization

[13:56] CB Axel: Countries that embrace neoliberalism should look at the countries where it's not working for the people.

[13:56] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): ah

[13:56] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): but then they will just "NOT OUR PROBLEM!"

[13:57] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): and go on as usual

[13:57] herman Bergson: Well CB, the problem is that even former communist countries adopt neoliberal economics

[13:57] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): egoism

[13:58] herman Bergson: Since the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 the West believed neoliberalism had won...

[13:58] herman Bergson: and look at China.....

[13:58] herman Bergson: it used state controlled neoliberal economics...

[13:58] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): hmm

[13:59] herman Bergson: Main goal....economic growth and increase of profits

[13:59] herman Bergson: globalizing their economic influence

[13:59] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): and now the rest of the world believe that all their products are spy equipment for their government to take over the entire world

[13:59] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): Huawei ect

[13:59] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): true or not?

[14:00] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): their government is rotten for sure

[14:00] herman Bergson: Well Bejiita...if you would ask me....I really put some question marks there indeed :-))

[14:01] Krias  (krias): since 30 years, world growth decrease ! negative interest is the effect

[14:01] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): well im a bit guilty buing a Xiaomi mobile and Creality 3D printer before, but I still find their products to be of good quality but does that mean i m helping china conquer the world now

[14:02] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): pushing that aside cause i just wanted some new stuff

[14:02] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): ?

[14:02] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): i dont know

[14:02] herman Bergson smiles

[14:02] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): i just know that those brands are popular and with good reviews

[14:02] herman Bergson: So it was you Bejiita ^_^

[14:02] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): seems to all be serious companies

[14:02] Krias  (krias): no growth ? its the government fault , suddenly billions appears to protect and save ! not to lauch again the activities

[14:02] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): well

[14:03] herman Bergson: As you see...we run in increasingly more difficult issues here.....

[14:03] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): hmm i guess

[14:03] herman Bergson: Time to cool down our brains....

[14:04] herman Bergson: So, I thank you all again for your participation....

[14:04] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): or MRI scan them for fault diagnostics from overheating/thinking

[14:04] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): lol

[14:04] herman Bergson: Class dismissed....

[14:04] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): naaa thats no danger

[14:04] CB Axel: Thank you Herman and class.

[14:04] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): Thank you Herman

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