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Was Jesus Christ a fighter for economic justice?

Kevin Barrett

Kevin Barrett Reporting Live from the Economic Democracy Conference in Madison, Wisconsin — Day 1

Song: Woody Guthrie, “Jesus Christ”

Was Jesus Christ a fighter for economic justice? Protest folk icon Woody Guthrie apparently thought so.

Unfortunately, I won’t be able to interview Jesus to find out.

But I WILL be interviewing many of America’s other leading fighters for economic justice here at the Economic Democracy Conference here in Madison, Wisconsin – home of the Wisconsin Revolution, which launched the Occupy movement. The Economic Democracy Conference runs from Thursday, October 11th through Sunday, October 14th. For more information, go to Economic Democracy Conference DOT Org.

and will be featuring speakers including:

Monetary reform advocate Ellen Brown;

Former Green Party Presidential candidate and anti-corporate-personhood leader David Cobb;

Washington Correspondent of The Nation Magazine John Nichols;

Anti-capitalist historian Gar Alperovitz;

Anti-capitalist professor David Schweickart;

and many more!

The first three names on that list – Ellen Brown, David Cobb, and John Nichols – are all low-key 9/11 truth supporters. Actually, John Nichols is so low-key about his support for 9/11 truth that he won’t come right out and talk about it in public. Ellen Brown and David Cobb are a bit less reticent. All three of them think they’ll get further with their economic justice work if they don’t get dragged into the controversy about what really happened on September 11th, 2001. And I don’t really blame them.

John Nichols, Washington Correspondent for The Nation Magazine and Associate Editor of the Madison Capital Times, is the most accomplished and articulate chronicler of the Wisconsin Revolution – the revolt against Governor Scott Walker’s anti-union austerity measures that launched the Occupy movement. His book on the topic is called Uprising: How Wisconsin Renewed the Politics of Protest.

John Nichols gave the keynote speech last night to kick off the conference. Nichols invoked Fighting Bob LaFollette as his role model and inspiration. Fighting Bob LaFollette, in case you haven’t heard, sparked the Progressive movement a century ago from his base here in Wisconsin. LaFollette’s famous line was: “Who shall rule? Money, or man?” John Nichols updated that to “Who shall rule, money or Humanity?”

Nichols noted that Fighting Bob LaFollette got 24% of the vote as a third party candidate in the presidential elections of 1924, which scared the hell out of the powers that be – sort of like Ross Perot and Jesse Ventura have scared the hell out of the powers that be in our time, by threatening the two-party duopoly.

Nichols then explained why the fight for economic democracy, as exemplified by Fighting Bob LaFollette’s career, is necessary. Nichols said that economic democracy IS democracy. He pointed out that when the US of America began, only 4% of the people could vote – wealthy white male property owners. As the franchise was gradually expanded to less-wealthy white males in the 1840s, African Americans in the 1860s, women in the 1920s, and Native Americans in even later years, people without vast amounts of money and power have gradually obtained a voice in the decisions that affect their lives. Today, as the gap between the rich and everybody else widens, economic democracy is the key issue affecting the future of the American experiment.

Tonight, Friday night, Ellen Brown and David Cobb will be giving the keynote speeches.

Ellen Brown is gaining a reputation as the world’s leading currency reform advocate. Her book Web of Debt is a permanent bestseller, and her analysis of the way the banksters swindle the rest of us, by enmeshing us in a permanent web of debt, just keeps on developing more and more traction.

During our conversation over lunch yesterday, Ellen explained her bottom line: About one third of the price we pay for everything – food, shelter, transportation, and everything else we buy – is interest. In other words, we spend one third of our working lives as debt slaves on the bankster plantation.

By making banking a public utility, rather than a racket, we could put that one-third of our productivity to work for us, and for the planet.

This idea is so simple, so obvious, and so necessary, that even the foundation-funded left-wing usual suspects who have a big hand in conferences like this are starting to wake up and smell the coffee.

Go, Ellen!

David Cobb, tonight’s other keynote speaker, is the best-known activist fighting to revoke not only the Supreme Court’s decision in the Citizens United case – which lets corporations buy politicians with their unlimited funds, and thereby seize virtually unlimited power – but also the whole notion of corporate personhood. As one of the bumper-stickers I saw outside the conference says, “I’ll believe corporations are people when Texas starts executing them.” According to David Cobb, we SHOULD go ahead and execute all of the so-called “corporate persons,” and go back to a world in which corporations are corporations, and people are people.

I’m Kevin Barrett, a person and not a corporation, and I’m reporting for No Lies Radio DOT Org. I’ll be back with more reports from the Economic Democracy Conference in Madison, Wisconsin, on the web at Economic Democracy Conference DOT Org, so stay tuned to No Lies Radio for further information about how we, the 99%, can take back our world.

Song: Woody Guthrie, “Jesus Christ”

Filed by Kevin Barrett on 10/12/2012 reporting for No Lies Radio News

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