Time for Change (Bregtje van der Haak, VPRO Backlight 2010)

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Meet the new revolutionaries of the Do-It-Yourself cultures in Barcelona, Tallin and Jakarta. They are modern day heroes. They do not wait for political parties or institutions to change their world; they simply do it themselves, by creating new local currencies, by working in social networks or by simply robbing the banks and redistributing their money. The world economy is in crisis and public trust in financial institutions has hit rock bottom. As commercial banks were bailed out with billions of taxpayers money and continued to practice their old vices, many people lost faith in bank managers and politicians. They got angry at the speculative financial system that brings extreme wealth to a few and instability and unemployment to many. Could this dissatisfaction lead to social change? Can we imagine viable alternatives? Backlight goes on a worldwide search, with sociologist Manuel Castells and philosopher Peter Sloterdijk.

15 Comments For This Post


    21:34 how exactly was she able to do that, im willin to bet left and right nut that she had no authorization, is she still working there.

  2. Edside0 Says:

    Thanks for posting the video!

  3. aristochat3 Says:

    In this discussion on human action/energy in relation to debt, “work” is a describtion of “production”, it is conceptual, not an assumption.

    If you walk far enouph away, I am sure that you can still find a place or two where you can cut trees and make huts, pummel manioc and enjoy all the conveniences and comforts provided by such a lifestyle.

  4. aristochat3 Says:

    Further, human labour is not depreciated by machines, it is appreciated. Since to make those machines and to work those machines, requires a higher level of training and skill, which means a higher level of investment in the individual, a higher level of income and respect for these skils etc etc increasing the individual’s self-worth. Of course we could go back to spending all of our available energy on pummelling manioc in a forest , but you would have precious little left for you tube chats

  5. waywardeus Says:

    missing out on something here, both options assume there is work what makes it a little retrieved. there was a time when you just cut a tree and build a hut…

  6. aristochat3 Says:

    erm, no, money as debt does exactly represent our energy. For example :
    Option 1 you work and save for a very very long time and finally you buy a house (unless Catalan Robin hood comes and steals it from you 1st ).
    Option 2 you buy a house now, you get a loan, you work, you enjoy the bebefit of the house now and pay some interest for this.
    In either case, human energy is released.
    Suggest you read “Economics in 1 lesson” or “Human Action” to understand this relationhip.

  7. waywardeus Says:

    Steel from the rich, hang with the poor, what’s the point? I think it’s brilliant and something needs to be done. He didn’t steel out of greed but in response of the real criminals that make global crisis.
    To me the fiddling was wrong, but there’s another point of influence largely neglected; automated systems. Money does not represent our own energy anymore since machines do the work. We can hold on, but evolution just passed by and made a lot of slaves due to the depreciation of human labor.

  8. aristochat3 Says:

    I partially agree with this. Read/Reread Atlas Shrugged. Capitalism is the Capitalism of Hank Rearden. Capitalism cannot come to an end because we do not engage in real capitalism, we have engage in the contradiction of a mixed economy which has devolved into morally bankrupt “Crony Capitalism” (the capitalism of Orren Boyle and Jim Taggart). .The outcome of which by most theoretical accounts is very gloomy.

  9. aristochat3 Says:

    ..which is my point. The guy in the film thinks he is Robin Hood.
    I partially agree on the gold idea, because as long as the duty to pay is upheld by law, the debt is a store of “latent” value which we use today to exchange for goods and services. In my opinion, fiddling with the original ratio of debt to paper, is lacerny. So is, mis- appropiating my store of wealth to place risky bets. As wrong as borrowing my car and going for high speed, drug fuelled joy rides whilst I am on holiday.

  10. waywardeus Says:

    @aristochat3 Banks push a button and money is made, without gold it has no real value. Robin Hood was a thief.

  11. waywardeus Says:

    capitalism is coming to an end, not because of bankers, not because of politics, but because it served it’s needs. it had value when your hands earned, but now it’s owning patents and machines.

  12. aristochat3 Says:

    In addition people have to understand that there are 2 types of “capitalism” both cases are exemplyfied in Ayn Rands Atlas Shrugged. This capitalism we are experiencing is of the Orren Boyle type and is utterly contemptable, but you cannot just blame the banks, you must also blame the state policies that make being this immoral easy. It is simply incorrect to state that we have laissez faire capitalism. If we did, this situation would never have happened.

  13. aristochat3 Says:

    What about those people that have their hard earned savings in those banks? Those savings have been stolen by this spanish/catalan cooperative. It is not Robin Hood. It is nothing but a criminal act. As criminal as the banks who have also taken the hard earned savings and used it to place bets.

  14. Odziz Says:

    Absolutely brilliant!
    The World Happiness Bank would been a better title.

  15. jakemittle Says:


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