Speaking truth to power is a brave thing in any era, in any moment.
Trickle-down theory. Critiques of this neoliberal belief, its ironic usage, once a slam relegated to smaller progressive and academic circles now seems to be growing as a default critique. Meme-worthy even. We are moving beyond questioning the myth of trickle-down assumptions, now distrusting it by *default* for the scam that it is.
More people, feminist women writers especially, noted below, are making erudite clarifications around this worn out Regan-era trope.
Our contemporary lifeworld is heavily colonized by neoliberal consumerist cultural assumptions. Assumptions that remove us from ourselves. Assumptions that remove us from those we are together with as we move about our cities and neighborhoods. Decolonizing this is a huge task; the connection to sexism and other forms of oppression, of reducing life to transactional relations, users using users, is no coincidence.
That’s why it’s damn exciting to see these recent awakened punchy posts… needed in all our informal and formal organizing efforts now more than ever.
- Laurenellen McCann aka @elle_mccann‘s Sept. 30 post: No More Trickle Down Civic Tech
- “we have an imperative to identify the real people and communities our work is seeking to impact and to ensure that we are not acting on their behalf, but working together with them (as part of “them”) from day one.”
- Sarah Jaffe aka @sarahljaffey‘s Oct. 17 post: Neoliberal Feminists Don’t Want Women to Organize
- “Neoliberal feminism is a feminism that ignores class as a determining issue in women’s lives. It presumes, as Tressie McMillan Cottom pointed out in [a 2012] article on her personal website, that giving power to some women will automatically wind up trickling if not power, than at least some lifestyle improvements down to women with less power.”
- Sarah Lacy aka @sarahcuda‘s Oct. 22 post: The horrific trickle down of Asshole culture: Why I’ve just deleted Uber from my phone
- “You can certainly invest based only on the place you expect to find maximum return. That’s your job and your prerogative. But when it comes to the mounting misogyny in the tech world, you can’t sit on stage at industry events and say you care deeply about the state of women in the startup world and silently support assholes like these.”
This is all part of a continuum, seeing these three posts within less than a month just triggered my pattern detector this morning. Have you seen other recent posts playing with this same meme? Share’m on twitter with this not often used but existing hashtag: #trickledownmyth