Re: Zapatistas-culture not capitalism

7 Dec 1994 21:19 CST

In article <3c4kr4$>, writes...
>In article <3c3d6k$>, (PioneerTom) writes:
>> (JAMES BENTHALL) writes:
>> People change--ALL people change, no one remains in stasis and
>> it is incorrect to believe they do. Just my $0.02.
>> !Vivan los
>> Zapatistas!
>> james b.
>> Finally James has said something I can agree with! The point that the
>> zapatistas (and James) seem to miss is that change must adapt people
>> to their environment. The greatest change in the environment is
>> greater poulation densities. The major adaptation (and most successful
>> adaptation) to this is industrialization. This is exactly what the
>> zapatistas are resisting in their rejection of "capitalist" markets.
>> Tom Billings
>I think *you* miss the point. The reasons for the Zapatista rebellion is not
>that these people want to return from industrial jobs to an idyllic rural life.
>Most of these people are agriculturalists right now.

What do you mean by "right now" Julia? Are they on some evolutionary
trajectory that will eventually make capitalist out of them?

They are losing their
>land, some to industrial farming, but more to cattle ranching, which occupies a
>lot of land but employs very few. There are no jobs to be had here. Chiapas
>is one of the most economically depressed areas in Mexico. Moreover, it is not
>going to benefit in the short term from NAFTA. Industrialization is going to
>continue to be focused in the north and central parts of the country while the
>south languishes.

This is true indeed.

These people are not resisting capitalist markets because
>they hate capitalism and progress.

How do you know they don't hate capitalism and our Western notion of progress?
Actually, it is hard for us to fathom (most of us) but most non-wage laborers
hate the thought of becoming a wage-laborer. Everywhere that capitalism was
introduced the people fought like hell to get away from it. Everywhere!

> They are resisting because their livelihoods
>are being destroyed by capitalism and there are no alternatives in sight.

They are resisting because their livelihoods are being destroyed, period.

>Even in the cities, most Mexicans have not thrived in the last 15 years. Un-
>and underemployment rates are high, and many families barely scrape by. It's
>worse for those who have lost their land in the countryside. While some leaders
>may be ideologues, the base of the army is moved by desperation. If capitalism
>were able (or willing) to help them, they'd embrace it. Since it cannot (or
>will not), they look elsewhere.

They don't want wage-labor, but circumstances will *force* them to accept it--
just like circumstances forced _our_ descendents to accept it. :(

BTW, thanks for being on my side (somewhat)! :)

!Vivan los Zapatistas!

james benthall