Organizations of Domination

Organizations of
We must consume to survive.
But, our economy is organized so that our
country stays afloat by over-consumption.
 Spending
increases GDP.
Over Consumption
Examples of over-consumption:
Unnecessary focus on laziness
(idling, drive-throughs, etc).
Unnecessary focus on
Unnecessary focus on leisure.
Unnecessary focus on status
What’s wrong with overconsumption?
1) Disposable mentality
 2) Entitlement leads to “us” versus “them.”
 3) Pollution
Weber’s Concept of Domination
1) Coercive domination
 2) Legitimate domination – those in
authority are perceived as legitimate and
people obey them without force
 Traditional
 Rational-Legal
Michel’s Iron Law of Oligarchy
Once in power, those in power (even if
elected democratically) try to maintain
their power at the expense of the groups
over whom they have power.
Marx’s Dialectical Materialism
Those who own capital exploit the labor
power of the working class.
 Working class, because of species being,
will eventually revolt.
Exploitation Today
The economy today requires that we
participate in the exploitation of others:
Our culture supports such exploitation
 Language of rationality
Exploitation Today
Ethnic minorities, historically have been
exploited: Native Americans, Chinese,
Africans, etc.
However, it’s important to note that today,
there are more slaves than there has ever
been in human history.
Exploitation Today
All societies have “dirty jobs.” U.S. citizens, however,
commonly do not want to do many of those jobs because
they pay little, are dangerous and have no benefits.
Farm work
Cleaning services
Undocumented workers are reviled by U.S. workers, yet
are needed by them. Why such hatred for a group that
benefits us?
Exploitation Today
U.S. companies (and other MNCs) follow
cheap labor force that have little worker
Even in U.S., 56,000 workers lives are lost
due to industrial accidents and illness.
In other countries, the numbers are higher.
Exploitation Today
U.S. Economic leaders develop trade policy and
laws that benefit them at the expense of every
day people:
Economic markers like GDP
Govt/Business relationships -- WTO, World Bank and IMF,
Political policy often helps big business – for example,
Afghan food policy that requires food to be sent from the US
(which takes months) rather than buying food in the area.
Exploitation Today
Do people in the U.S. really want all
societies to be rich? What would that
How do we rationalize our desires?
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