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Distributism

Distributism is an economic theory asserting that the world's productive assets should be owned rather than concentrated. Developed in Europe in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, distributism was based upon the principles of Catholic social teaching the teachings of Pope Leo XIII in his encyclical Rerum novarum and Pope Pius XI in Quadragesimo anno, it views both capitalism and socialism as flawed and exploitative, it favors economic mechanisms such as cooperatives and member-owned mutual organizations as well as small businesses, large-scale antitrust regulations. Some Christian democratic political parties have advocated distributism in their economic policies. According to distributists, property ownership is a fundamental right, the means of production should be spread as as possible, rather than being centralized under the control of the state, a few individuals, or corporations. Distributism, advocates a society marked by widespread property ownership. Co-operative economist Race Mathews argues that such a system is key to bringing about a just social order.

Distributism has been described in opposition to both socialism and capitalism, which distributists see as flawed and exploitative. Furthermore, some distributists argue that socialism is the logical conclusion of capitalism as capitalism's concentrated powers capture the state, resulting in a form of socialism. Thomas Storck argues: "Both socialism and capitalism are products of the European Enlightenment and are thus modernizing and anti-traditional forces. In contrast, distributism seeks to subordinate economic activity to human life as a whole, to our spiritual life, our intellectual life, our family life." A few distributists were influenced by the economic ideas of Pierre-Joseph Proudhon and his mutualist economic theory, therefore the lesser-known anarchist branch of distributism of Dorothy Day and the Catholic Worker Movement could be considered a form of free-market libertarian socialism due to their opposition to both state capitalism and state socialism. Some have seen it more as an aspiration, realised in the short term by commitment to the principles of subsidiarity and solidarity, although proponents cite such periods as the Middle Ages as examples of the historical long-term viability of distributism.

Influential in the development of distributist theory were Catholic authors G. K. Chesterton and Hilaire Belloc, the Chesterbelloc, two of distributism's earliest and strongest proponents; the mid-to-late 19th century witnessed an increase in popularity of political Catholicism across Europe. According to historian Michael A. Riff, a common feature of these movements was opposition not only to secularism, but to both capitalism and socialism. In 1891 Pope Leo XIII promulgated Rerum novarum, in which he addressed the "misery and wretchedness pressing so unjustly on the majority of the working class" and spoke of how "a small number of rich men" had been able to "lay upon the teeming masses of the laboring poor a yoke little better than that of slavery itself". Affirmed in the encyclical was the right of all men to own property, the necessity of a system that allowed "as many as possible of the people to become owners", the duty of employers to provide safe working conditions and sufficient wages, the right of workers to unionise.

Common and government property ownership was expressly dismissed as a means of helping the poor. Around the start of the 20th century, G. K. Chesterton and Hilaire Belloc drew together the disparate experiences of the various cooperatives and friendly societies in Northern England and Northern Europe into a coherent political theory which advocated widespread private ownership of housing and control of industry through owner-operated small businesses and worker-controlled cooperatives. In the United States in the 1930s, distributism was treated in numerous essays by Chesterton and others in The American Review and edited by Seward Collins. Pivotal among Belloc's and Chesterton's other works regarding distributism are The Servile State, Outline of Sanity. Although a majority of distributism's supporters were not Catholics and many were in fact former radical socialists who had become disillusioned with socialism, distributist thought was adopted by the Catholic Worker Movement, conjoining it with the thought of Dorothy Day and Peter Maurin concerning localized and independent communities.

It influenced the thought behind the Antigonish Movement, which implemented cooperatives and other measures to aid the poor in the Canadian Maritimes. Its practical implementation in the form of local cooperatives has been documented by Race Mathews in his 1999 book Jobs of Our Own: Building a Stakeholder Society; the position of distributists when compared to other political philosophies is somewhat paradoxical and complicated. Entrenched in an organic but English Catholicism, advocating culturally traditionalist and agrarian values, directly challenging the precepts of Whig history—Belloc was nonetheless an MP for the Liberal Party and Chesterton once stated "As much as I did, more than I did, I believe in Liberalism, but there was a rosy time of innocence when I believed in Liberals". This liberalism is different from most modern forms, taking influence from William Cobbett and John Ruskin, who combined elements of radicalism, challenging the establishment position, but from a perspective of renovation, not revolution.

Cheap Thrills (film)

Cheap Thrills is a 2013 black comedy thriller film directed by E. L. Katz in his directorial debut, it premiered at South by Southwest on March 8, 2013, was acquired by Drafthouse Films and Snoot Entertainment. It was released on March 2014, in the United States. Craig is an auto mechanic, he is unable to pay his rent and after seeing the eviction sign, he goes to a dive bar, where he meets an old friend from high school, Vince. After their reunion, they meet a rich couple and Violet, who appear friendly and benign and after becoming aware of Craig's dire financial situation, offer them money in return for completing certain tasks to entertain Violet, as it is her birthday; as the first task, Colin offers fifty dollars to whoever between Craig and Vince can drink a shot he pours first. From there, the danger of the tasks escalates along with the payout; the dares result in a bouncer confronting Craig, offered five hundred dollars by Colin to hit him first. He is knocked out; when he comes to, he realizes he been brought to the home of Violet.

Tensions between Craig and Vince begin to emerge when they compete with each other in a breath-holding contest and Vince punches Craig in the stomach to prevent him from winning so that he may claim the prize money himself. Another dare between Colin and Vince involves Vince urinating on Craig's shoes; when Craig angrily goes to clean up in the bathroom, Vince accompanies him and they hatch a plan to rob the couple. Vince divulges. At knife-point, Vince manages to get Colin to reveal. Craig retrieves the money and returns only to have Colin and Violet turn the tables on them when they disarm Vince. Colin and Violet agree to let "bygones be bygones" if Craig and Vince promise to behave, still allow them to take all of the money, but only if they continue to play. Another dare involves Craig having sex with Violet as well as getting $4,500, the amount required to pay for Craig's month's rent; this angers Vince, who views it as increasing hostilities between the two friends. Humiliated and feeling guilty for cheating on his wife, Craig withdraws from the game and goes home, having earned enough money to delay homelessness for the time being.

Violet, who seems to have begun to develop feelings for him, is upset and becomes withdrawn, causing the game to end, as its purpose was to entertain her. Vince, desperate to win some more money, offers to perform anything asked of him. Colin suggests the amputation of his pinkie finger for $25,000. Just as Vince is about to accept, Craig returns to the game, stating that he only temporarily solves his problem with the $4,500 he has earned so far, offers to the do the same dare for a smaller sum. Vince goes lower, they go back and forth until Craig settles for $15,000. Vince cuts Craig's pinkie off, resulting in Craig winning again, which only serves to anger Vince further; the next challenge involves eating a cooked dead dog, which had died while trying to eat Craig's finger, with the winner who finishes his portion first receiving $50,000. The contest results with the money being awarded to whoever eats Craig's finger. Craig wins but he gets beaten up by an enraged Vince. After being taken outside to calm down by Colin, he suggests that Vince kill Craig for the remaining portion of the $250,000.

Vince finds himself unable to kill his friend. Colin calls Craig a taxi and he leaves with his winnings in hand. After he has left, Colin pays Violet her money, as the two had made a bet on which friend would kill the other; the film ends with Craig arriving home, comforting his child, when the light turns on and his wife appears, staring at Craig covered in blood and at the money strewn all over the room. Pat Healy as Craig Daniels Sara Paxton as Violet Ethan Embry as Vince David Koechner as Colin Amanda Fuller as Audrey Daniels Brighton Sharbino as Luann Todd Farmer as a security guard Cheap Thrills was the first feature-film directed by E. L. Katz. After premiering at South by Southwest, a day-long auction took place for rights to the film in a rare bidding war. Drafthouse Films, partnered with Snoot Entertainment, won the auction. Drafthouse Films planned on releasing the film theatrically on limited screens, it screened at the Boston Underground Film Festival and the Fantasia International Film Festival.

Drafthouse Films released Cheap Thrills on DVD/Blu-ray May 27, 2014 which included a 45-minute documentary called "Vital Heat: The Making of Cheap Thrills". On Rotten Tomatoes the film has a score of 89% based on reviews from 97 critics, with an average rating of 6.95/10. The consensus states "Gleefully nasty and darkly hilarious, Cheap Thrills lives down to its title in the best possible way."Joe Leydon, writing for Variety, said that film "is a nasty piece of work, which doubtless will be the strongest selling point for this worst-case scenario about escalating dares and degradations". John Defore, of The Hollywood Reporter, said that the film is "one of the most involving works of cinematic misanthropy in years". Defore compared the film to The Most Dangerous Game. Scott Weinberg, of the online horror website Fearnet, said, "Cheap Thrills breezes by on a twisted idea, a fantastic cast, a bunch of ethical quandaries that are both eerily uncomfortable and slyly fascinating at the same time."

Simon Foster of SBS Films said, "A textbook case of a film that never quite amounts to the sum of its parts, Cheap Thrills is still more than its title suggest

Samira Ahmed (author)

Samira Ahmed is an American author of young adult fiction and non-fiction, best known for her New York Times best selling novels Love, Hate & Other Filters and Internment. Ahmed was born in Bombay and grew up in Batavia, Illinois, she has a degree from the University of Chicago, taught high school English for seven years, worked in nonprofit before publishing her first novel in 2018. Her young adult debut novel Love, Hate & Other Filters, about a Muslim Indian-American teen filmmaker making plans about her future while dealing with islamophobia, debuted on #8 of the New York Times Young Adult Hardcover bestseller list and received starred reviews from Booklist, Publishers Weekly, School Library Journal, her 2019 sophomore novel Internment, set in near-future America where Muslims are sent to internment camps following a law enacted by the islamophobic president, received a starred review from Kirkus Reviews and debuted on the New York Times Young Adult Hardcover bestseller list at #4. Internment has been described as one of the "most politically urgent reads of 2019" by Entertainment Weekly.

It has been optioned for film by Gotham Group and Chariot Entertainment prior to its release. Young Adult standalones Love, Hate & Other Filters Internment Mad, Bad & Dangerous to Know Stories Brains Don't Smell Red Thread Color Outside the Lines Take the Mic: Fictional Stories of Everyday Resistance Vampires Never Get Old Come On In Poetry Low Light Ink Knows No Borders