Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Downward Mobility in an Upscale World

At Speaking of Faith, Shane Claiborne speaks about downward mobility in an upscale world.

A clip:
"Several years ago, I was at a meeting where a new movement to end poverty was announced. I looked around. The only poor people in sight were the handful of people I had come with. Launching a movement to end poverty without poor people in critical roles is like launching a civil rights movement without Black people, or a feminist movement without women. As long as the poor are not present and intricately involved in the process, ending poverty will remain an intellectual, political concept. It will not convert us."

Jubilee-- What I can't Say

Jo Hunter Adams

Happy New Year!

I commented a couple of days ago that Zimbabwe and South Africa both offer a lot of insights on redistribution and jubilee. But I had a complete block talking about these, because I strongly believe in redistribution but am completely at a loss on how good redistribution-- redistribution that increases dignity and justice-- could be realized at a governmental level. Although I know some at a personal level when it comes to South Africa and Zim, I actually can't speak to redistribution in really concrete ways.

So I'm going to cop out and say I don't know. I don't think it's enough for us to make individual choices (though that's essential) that involve personal redistribution, but I don't know how we create and sustain governments whose goal is redistribution. At least not in truly unequal societies. I welcome thoughts, insights etc. and in the meantime, I'll be trying out those individual choices...