Bread and Roses

The likelihood of ‘election denialism’ to be at the forefront in the 2024 election alongside the usual cultural and economic issues is also high, and it will be made even likelier if Donald Trump decides to run for president. According to certain reports, Donald Trump is expected to announce his run for president either next week or sometime this month. Thus, Donald Trump will make the issue of ‘election denialism’ even worse for Democrats, unless Donald Trump is faced with someone whose power stems from credibility and legitimacy. At least 70 percent of the country do not want Joe Biden to run for a second term. In turn, power without credibility and legitimacy and without a popular base ends up diminishing, and that is what we have witnessed with these midterm results to a certain extent. 

I was once told by an older relative who passed away recently and who had immense travel and life experience that in order to know Afghanistan, one must know America, and in order to know America, one must know Afghanistan. I was only in my early twenties when he told me this, but the idea stuck with me all along, and that idea has only become more and more validated up until the present moment. Much of what I have put forth comes from a combination of book learning and certain experiences, and if the stuff I have put forth is not taken up wholesale by others, it should at least be considered and pondered upon to a certain extent. 

This brings us to the issue of education and its all-important role in a government and society. Much of what I have put forth has been in opposition to many individuals and groups. But there is a valid reason and rationale for this opposition as well. As Antonio Gramsci wrote: “Consciousness of a self which is opposed to others, which is differentiated and, once having set itself a goal, can judge facts and events other than in themselves or for themselves but also insofar as they tend to drive history forward or backward.” Gramsci added: “To know oneself means to be oneself, to be master of oneself, to distinguish oneself, to free oneself from a state of chaos, to exist as an element of order – but of one’s own order and one’s own discipline in striving for an ideal.” 

The ideal, arguably, is that through education, a “reform of our consciousness” can occur which then enables us to comprehend the ill fate that comes with having “delimited” the economy of our society from other aspects or dimensions of our society, to borrow from Karl Polanyi. Having “delimited” the economy of our society from all other aspects and dimensions of society has led to the failure of Western man in “understanding himself” to borrow from Polanyi, and this failure of Western man in understanding himself has led to history driving itself backward rather than forward. If we were to freeze our state of affairs at the moment and juxtapose our situation with the economic and social advancements of previous stages in American history, then indeed, the notion that we have moved backward as opposed to forward is both legitimate and well-founded. 

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