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Thomas Piketty says Bernie Sanders’ electoral strategy is the way to beat back the right – Salon New paper explores how both parties were captured by the “elite,” leaving a politically rudderless underclass

Thomas Piketty says Bernie Sanders’ electoral strategy is the way to beat back the right – Salon New paper explores how both parties were captured by the “elite,” leaving a politically rudderless underclass


In a new paper, French political economist Thomas Piketty, author of the bestselling2013 book “Capital in the Twenty-First Century,” argues thatWestern political parties on the right and left have both become parties of the “elites.”

Yetthe 65-page paper from the notoriously punctilious economist — titled“Brahmin Left vs. Merchant Right: Rising Inequality the Changing Structure of Political Conflict” — is more surprising for the lessons it has for the political left in the Western world.Indeed, the left-populist wing ofWestern political parties, including the American progressive movement restarted by Bernie Sanders, has reason to celebrate: Piketty’s paperalignswith their somewhat counterintuitive strategy that shiftingthe Democratic Party platformmore to the left is actually a winning electoral strategy that can help bring backdisenfranchised working-class voters and less educated voters who currently may not vote at all or identify with right-wing populism.

“Using post-electoral surveys from France, Britain and the US, this paper documents a striking long-run evolution in the structure of political cleavages,” Piketty writes in the abstract. He goes on to explain thepolitical changes that have happened since the 1950s and 1960s, when “the vote for left-wing (socialist-labour-democratic) parties was associated with lower education and lower income voters” — in other words, the Labour Party of the United Kingdom, the Socialist Party of France and the Democratic Party of the United States were considered parties that supported and helpeddestitute and less-well-educated voters.

Yet over time, those parties, Piketty explains, “gradually become associated with higher education voters,” which he describes as creating a system of “multiple-elite” parties where “high-education elites now vote for the ‘left,’ while high-income/high-wealth elites still vote for the ‘right’ (though less and less so).” In other words,both sides of the spectrum became parties of the elite, with no party for less educated folks or the working class.

Blank Forms

Áine O’Dwyer by Keith Connolly

Following a chance encounter on BBC Radio 3’s Late Junction show, Áine O’Dwyer and Mohammed Issa “Matona” made their live collaborative debut at the 2016 Counterflows festival in Glasgow. Now performing together for the second time, they bring their union of Tanzanian and Irish music to Greenpoint’s San Damiano Mission.

Mohammed Issa “ Matona ” is a multi-instrumentalist and teacher renowned for his performance ability and commitment to the preservation of Taarab, the traditional music of the East African island of Zanzibar, Tanzania. A unique style of Arab-African music played with the instruments of Middle Eastern countries, Taarab arrived in Zanzibar from Egypt in 1870 and has since evolved into a niche popular music form currently taught and played at the Dhow Countries Music Academy (DCMA) in Zanzibar, where Matona teaches and serves as Artistic Director. Matona has been thoroughly appreciated at the DCMA for the dedication and innovation he has brought to educating young and often disadvantaged people as well as for his integration of a diverse range of musical forms into the curriculum. He is best known for his extraordinary virtuosity in playing oud, violin, nay, tash kota, saxophone, percussion, keyboard, ganun, guitar, cello, and clarinet.

Áine O’Dwyer ‘s practice lies somewhere between her role as a vocalist, musician, accompanist, improviser, composer, performer, listener, sonic Stalker, and audience member. In recent years, the pipe organ has become an integral site for her experimentation, culminating in the albums Locusts and Gegenschein . This year’s Gallarais experiments with acoustic decay and was developed during her self-made residency at the Brunel tunnel shaft in London. All three releases celebrate her interests in found and forgotten spaces, chance choreographies, acoustic phenomena, the act of listening, and the search for alternative scorings through a combined performativity of instruments, drawings, space, time, memory, and the body. Past solo releases include Anything Bright or Startling? and Music for Church Cleaners .

San Damiano Mission is not wheelchair accessible. There are three steps leading up to the building and we are happy to accommodate anyone who needs assistance. It is located three blocks away from the Nassau G subway stop. P lease write at least three days before the event and we will make every effort to accommodate you.

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