How Race and Capital Came to Destroy Meaning and Civility in America and Foreshadow the Coming Economic Depression
Edited By Greg Tanaka
In a time of great US and global social unrest and unravelling, Systemic Collapse and Renewal presents a blueprint for how Americans can respond to that unrest by reclaiming and rebuilding our democracy. Part I traces the deep, underlying sources of the disintegration and collapse. Through storytelling, case history and ethnography, it examines how a small group of people ("elites") used ethnic diversity resulting from a natural pattern of global in-migration to the US as a distraction while they implemented a planned, behind-closed-doors strategy to seize the democracy, ruin the middle class and deprive a once proud people of an expectation that their government will be "by, for and of the people." With the former representative democracy "hijacked" by these moneyed interests, Systemic Collapse and Renewal demonstrates that it remains quintessentially American to believe "there can always be a way out," and that the encroaching acts of fascism by elites can be pushed back and defeated. Tapping into this optimism, Part II of Systemic Collapse and Renewal sets forth a path for democratic renewal. That path begins by examining that which was taken away: the "shared meanings" (or cultural norms, beliefs and behaviors) that are deeply American and can be easily re-taught, celebrated and once again used by Americans to build social cohesion as a country. Departing the recent liberal emphasis on critique and on assigning blame, Part II of Systemic Collapse and Renewal urges a new US educational and social movement based on mutual reliance—and "healing the wounds"—for an increasingly diverse country. Democratic renewal begins with the simple step of sharing our stories and our dreams about how to make a better world.
Formerly a law school associate dean and acting dean, Gregory K. Tanaka (BA, Williams College; MBA, Harvard; JD,
Georgetown; PhDs in education and anthropology, UCLA) is a Visiting Distinguished Fellow at Instituto McLaren de Pedagogia
Critica y Educacion Popular and teaches at Saint Mary’s College.