Berlin’s spatial dynamics and organized working class show how to secure liveable spaces and combat the financial nature of housing: socialize them.

Photo: Jan Ickx / Deutsche Wohnen & Co. Enteignen

Berlin’s spatial dynamics and organized working class show how to secure liveable spaces and combat the financial nature of housing: socialize them.

Over the last few decades, housing in cities around the world has undergone unprecedented financialization and artificial speculation. Investors have never been richer. The worldwide value of the current real estate market is $217 trillion, 36 times worth the value of all the gold ever mined.

Profits from the commodification of the housing market have skyrocketed in step with the enclosure of spaces and the fixing of financial value to them. …

What a time to be alive.

Peretz Partensky from San Francisco, USA

A new day is dawning. It’s the beginning of 2028. Almost 10 years have passed since our Gracious God Emperor Donald J. Trump nominated Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court.

Across the land, workers, humans, and a new sub-class of fewmans (farm workers bound to the land, who graciously may graze and live off of a square meter of produce per month) are stretching their legs, betraying their existential angst to their mandatory Alexa smart fridges, and jogging around the block to meet their quota of heart-elevated minutes a week so that Blue Cross…

Our lives are made of time. But what are we to do when that time is increasingly being subsumed by work? Here is how, and why, capitalism and work colonizes your free time. And what we can do about it.

Andrea Komlosy, author of Work: The Past 1000 Years, describes what she terms the “flexibilized” workforce, a floating class of expats who attempt to balance dwindling occupational security and opportunity by precariously shifting from sector to sector.

The flexibilized workforce’s most defining feature is its ability to rapidly shift career paths and identify a set of skills that increase their…

And why history supports the argument that co-operative, democratic control of the economy is possible.

That’ll be 94 shekels, please.

Money. Love it. Hate it. Whatever you feel about it, you probably don’t understand it.

You’d be hard pressed to find any other concept that so fundamentally controls our life like money does. Or one that is so colored and distorted by faith, politics, and misunderstanding.

Why was money ever invented? Ask most economists and they’ll respond that it more easily facilitates exchange and lays the basis for it within more advanced societies.

Essentially, it evolved out of the need for more complex markets and…

A society whose narrative is built on hyper-individualism and competition disenfranchises quicker than men can cope. And it makes them dangerous.

Photo by Veenit Panchal on Unsplash

“Nations and peoples are largely the stories they feed themselves. If they tell themselves stories that are lies, they will suffer the future consequences of those lies. If they tell themselves stories that face their own truths, they will free their histories for future flowerings,” (Ben Okri, A Way of Being Free).

There is a story inoculated into your mind at a very young age in the U.S. …

An immigrant’s take on Globalization and Berlin

Underemployed, underpaid, and overeducated: wait am I talking about millennials, expats, or immigrants? Let’s try all three: things aren’t going well for any of us, and we’re pissed.

One really, and I mean really, just needs to look around Berlin to see how the city’s problems reflect a global economy that is depressing wages and replacing jobs with technology. Berlin is a microcosm for the state of the world: much is beautiful and striving, but underneath, and somewhat visibly, people are profoundly suffering.

Berlin in itself is not Germany; there is no robust…

It is a long drive to Kom Ombo from Luxor. Flanked by the fertile Nile valley, my driver Aslam’s Peugot hums and sputters incessantly, the crunching of rocks and the spewing of coarse sand whipping up dust in front and behind us. Carts piled high with green stalks of sugar cane fall behind us, their donkeys often in a laborious gallop, others trotting leisurely. Nothing jerks or juts out suddenly, save the occasional security checkpoint or speed bump, poorly marked by recycled tires wrapped around bent and rusty poles.

Scattered villages pass, but they are so dilapidated they seem to…

“He and the grandmother discussed better times.”

“‘A good man is hard to find,” Red Sammy said. “Every- thing is getting terrible. I remember the day you could go off and leave your screen door unlatched. Not no more.’”

We were once told to never get into a strangers car, but now we all use Uber and don’t think twice. We fly off to exotic locations and invade the apartments of foreigners.

I’m saying this now: we’ve arrived at the point where “A terrible man is hard to find.” Yet the good one remains elusive.

What is “good” in an…

Thomas McGath

Writer living in Berlin. This is my personal Medium and not my professional one. Thanks and good night.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store