The Big Race is my contribution to capitalism poetry, a reflection on the value and ethics of free market rules.
The Big Race
Race day brings swarms of 7.7 billion runners, limpers, jumpers, hoppers, one-leggeds, joggers, sprinters, crawlers, wheel-chair-bounds, and dead-weights.
Mixed weather at the starting line, with sweltering heat, biting frost, piercing hail, leaden showers, mild breezes, balmy sunshine, and tepid temperatures painting the 7.7 billion springboards.
Onlookers discover a hit-and-miss medley of footwear among footed competitors, air-cushioned breathables alongside dirty protruding toes, itchy sweaters besides sunburnt or frostbitten torsos.
To call some athletes would be in bad taste, those at the back of the field, behind the 7.6999999 billion, scrambling for a foothold. As for the legless, some are blessed with crutches, others are not.
Blood, tear, and sweat-costing brawls about hunger pangs and homes or the lack thereof break out hither and thither. Meanwhile, the starting line is smooth and fair - free passage for 7.7 billion pros and rookies.
At the bang of the gun, they're off, the field cut at once, billions dropping like flies before the first hurdle from pre-race exertions, blisters, deadweight equipment, leglessness, balls and chains or sloth.
An unruly mob of spectators hurls power snacks and energy drinks at the foot-cushioned frontrunners wearing non-sweat running gear, soon coasting toward the finish line. When they tire a little, they hitch a rest on a bunch of no-hopers.
Sponsors bestow them with enviable endorsements like foot rubs and shoulder massages or cool sponges to the forehead. Buoyancy-boasted and basking in tough-training-rewards, the last few rivals dig deep, not shy of a dirty trick or two.
One or two teeth-grinding, heel-digging once-amateurs latch onto the glory but never quite catch up. The red ribbon in sight ignites the final sprint to draw out the winner.
Gloating to a prominent reporter before getting his trophy, the champion applauds splendid organisation, fair-play, and credits gruelling preparatory work. The first handful of losers seethe a little over a glass of prosecco.
As for the bulk of the 7.7 billion, some vow to try harder, some cry foul-play, some despair and die.
DNA Diversity is one of my cultural identity poems, a reflection on national and cultural identity, xenophobia, multiculturalism, and racism.
I’m not the pure-bred I thought I was / I’m a mongrel. Paid top dollars for one of those DNA-ancestry tests and now have to swallow that I’m a cross between a Poodle and Dalmation, with deep traces of St. Bernard, Collie, Setter, and Greyhound.
My twenty-seventh cousin seven times removed was a champion sheep-dog, my great, great, great, great aunt pulled sleighs across the Central Siberian Plateau, my great, great, great, great, great uncle worked chased foxes across the Scottish Highlands, while my third cousin twice removed got dumped in a ditch in Alaska, and, not to mention my great, great, great, great grandmother the boldest Dingo dog ever.
This made me think twice about starting the habitual scrap with that dimwit half-bred next door this morning. I bet we’re related.
into an ocean of terrorising sirens and deafening alarm bells, unproclaimed fireworks, not-warned-about bombs, not just scares. In lieu of architectural bonanza, rubble, dust, and a distinct stench of sewage, a shitty stink of unpotable drinking water.
The cityscape cedes to a bloodied bodyscape, limbs scattered, bawls shed, seeping into torn corpses. Too much screentime, not a problem here, falling stocks dinky, juxtaposed with prospectless crowd investments, dried-up shares.
Sewn back together, limbs wrapped in fresh soft skin, gather around the once-child, now juxtaposed into snug serenity, ignite the once-fire to heat bones and kindle the ambers. NO ALARMS here, only surprises.
In the fight for equality, discussing the creation of fair taxation systems is a necessity. In developed nations, it often seems that the middle classes bear the heaviest tax burden. Meanwhile, top earners and corporations can use tax loopholes and investment schemes to lower their tax bill. The tax discussion must start in earnest if we want to close the wealth gap and protect people on low incomes.
#Davos2019 – Taxation Is a Non-Issue
The tax discussion appears to be way down the list of priorities among business and political leaders. At the World Economic Forum in Davos, only one tax discussion took place as pointed out in thes NOW THIS video.
Poverty Is on the Rise in Developed Countries
In countries like Ireland, Britain, and America, food poverty and homelessness are on the rise. Politicians emphasize that increasing the top tax bracket is of little use. As a consequence, mid-income earners carry a disproportional share of the tax burden. Although income tax rates may appear acceptable, hidden taxes such as VAT on everyday products like fuel have a real and direct impact on the spending power of middle-income earners.
Taxes combined with low wages have driven many people from their homes or made them reliant on charities such as food banks. In the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis, governments introduce austerity measures, curbing spending on public services. Judging from the yellow vest protests in France and beyond, creating a fair taxation system is a core necessity.
Share Your Thoughts on a Fair Taxation System
Please share your thoughts on this issue in the comment box below. What has your own experience been? Are you paying too much or not enough taxes? Is is worth raising the top tax rate? How could your government make the taxation system fairer?
As the World Economic Forum in Davos draws to a close, and illustrious political and business power brokers leave the snowy town, one wonders where this leaves the rest of us. Although some NGOs also made representations, only a handful of small anti-globalisation protests took place. Have people suddenly got the answer to the question why is socialism bad and decided to stay away?
In recent times, socialism has become a dirty word, one associated with an unruly far left. Is this tarnish justified? Let’s look at the dictionary definitions of socialism and pitch it against the capitalism-definition.
Reading this definition, one wonders, what’s wrong with socialism? What’s wrong with equality? What’s wrong with sharing equally in a country’s money? Staunch capitalists will cite examples of countless failed socialist regimes and emphasize that socialism simply doesn’t work.
The current upheaval in Venezuela is a prime example of what divides the right and the left. While the US supports and recognizes the opposition leader and calls Maduro out as a undemocratic socialist leader, Maduro supports blame economic sanctions for the dire state of the Venezuelan economy.
How Did Socialism Get Such a Bad Name?
Capitalists don’t like the restrictions socialism places on economies. Instead, they propagate free market rules designed for growth and economic freedom. Needless to say, they also like low tax rates.
Perhaps one ought to take a brief look back at the history of socialism to understand how this political philosophy came about in the first instance. What’s more, it’s important to understand that socialism has many different applications.
The examples in the video illustrate the vast differences in the application of the socialist model. It appears that the nations combining capitalism and socialism like Denmark and Sweden have been the most successful in promoting economic growth while also ensuring a decent degree of equality.
The USA and Europe illustrate the workings of capitalism, although some countries incorporate elements of socialism into their political system. Countries like Sweden have excellent public services to cater to those who may not be able to afford private healthcare or education.
The 2008 Financial Crisis – Capitalism Goes Socialist
After the 2008 global recession, countless financial institutions required state financial support in what appears to be a contradiction in terms.
If you wear your socialist hat for a moment, you’d have to ask yourself how financial institutions arrived at asking for and taking government bailouts. While sticking to strictly capitalist principles when profitable, the banks suddenly put on a socialist hat and gladly took the cash.
Many governments feared the mayhem that may have been associated with the collapse of the banking sector and jumped in to help without delay. Who footed the bill? The taxpayer, stupid!
The Basic Principles of Socialism v Capitalism in Brief
So, how do the two systems impact on the everyday workings of a society?
government or Co-ops
individuals or Businesses
determined by people or companies
higher taxes for public services
lower taxes to stimulate economic growth
government ensures greater equality
less competition, higher prices
more competition, lower prices
substantial government investment
limited government spending
slower economic growth
equality and better public services
stronger economic growth
This is a simplistic view of capitalism and socialism. The real impact also depends on world economic factors, political stability, and international relations. Moreover, most economies combine the two political philosophies, each creating and implementing its own socialism&capitalism cocktail.
Socialism – Good or Bad?
In theory, socialist principles are worthwhile. Unfortunately, its pure application is nigh unachievable.
Capitalism – Good or Bad?
One only needs to bring to mind the ever-widening wealth gap to grasp the very serious and catastrophic downsides of pure capitalism. Only one year ago, the Guardian reported that 42 individuals held the same amount of wealth as 3.7 billion of the world’s poorest people.
Socialism v Capitalism
Socialism and capitalism are wide open to abuse. In its principles, socialism promotes equality and fairness – something that no one can argue with.
Smartly combining capitalism and socialism appears to be the best way to provide citizens with a decent standard of living while promoting economic growth.
Climate change and global warming have been making the headlines. But neither the frightening predictions of scientists nor the efforts of people across the globe appear to suffice to halt or slow global warming. It’s time to make global warming a personal issue. This is my global warming poem Doomed Planet.
Doomed Planet – A Global Warming Poem
Was woken early by winter bird song took a look outside to find it's time to cut the lawn mere weeks after the winter solstice
take global warming personally??? you must be joking!!! on goes the heat at full blast will be driving a thousand miles this week
but the water isn't rising where I am problem filed my children's children? well, they'll have to deal with it
when the proverbial really hits the fan meanwhile, I'm doing ok sent money to flood victims on the other side of the world there's a heatwave in Australia they said on the news
I do hate those prophets of doom and gloom what do they know anyway??? just trying to frighten us that's what they're doing
more plastics in the ocean than fish??? that's bad alright shouldn't have left my trash on the beach the other day you're right
anyway, I can't do much about global warming if everyone made tiny changes it could make a difference is that what you're saying??? so, what's your tiny change for a doomed planet???