Capitalism is Dying, but don’t expect the patient to accept the prognosis

“Capitalism, Marx said, never went beyond those economic models where a few dominate a majority. Capitalism just replaced the dichotomies of master/slave and lord/serf with a new one. A dominating and exploiting minority was still there, but it had a new name: employers.” ― Richard D. Wolff, Understanding Marxism

Perhaps you’ve noticed something. There have been massive staffing shortages throughout the US and elsewhere. Workers are walking out or just not showing up. Little analysis has been given to this phenomenon outside of left circles, but some have dubbed it “Striketober.” How ever it is termed, this is what late capitalism looks like as it dies.

How long did we think this would go on for? Millions of lives full of monotony, drudgery and economic lack and hardship, while billionaires jaunt off to the upper atmosphere in penis shaped rockets to the cheers of most mainstream media. But along with what we are witnessing there is a disconnect.

I have written a lot about how wealthy liberals in the US have affixed blinders to their political senses before and since the last election cycle. Biden won, that is all. But his political agency has been stymied at every turn, often by members of his own party. And few liberals seem to be aware that Trump is rising meteorically in popularity among the 74+ million Americans who voted for him last time. 74+ million votes, and there are only 168 million Americans eligible to vote. He has the Republican arm of the ruling duopoly in his tight grip. How many Republican lawmakers have seen their popularity and influence suffer gravely for simply condemning the January 6th coup attempt?

We can hope that the increasing frustration of workers will result in a revolution of sorts. A “times up” moment for capitalism. But this would be at the expense of understanding how labor movements have been crushed in the West. The States has one of the bloodiest records when it comes to suppression of workers. Yes, there have been many gains. But how many Americans are aware of the massacres carried out by government forces and militias? How many understand the lyrics of Woody Guthrie songs, or have ever even heard of the music legend? This imposed ignorance is by design. Civil rights can be celebrated. Labor rights? Not so much.

The American Empire is the seat of capitalist power in the world today, and its militaristic viciousness is unmatched when it comes to protecting the “interests” of that power. A 20-year long war against Afghanistan and the ruins of Iraq attest to this. But mass graves in South and Central America also demonstrate the empire’s unbridled brutality against anyone who dares oppose its economic and political hegemony. In short, we know what the American ruling class is capable of. And we would be foolish to think they would not use everything in their arsenal to protect their enormous coffers as things become more desperate.

And thus comes the specter of fascism. With a labor force increasingly atomized and pushed to the brink, and a Democratic Party unable and unwilling to address the very dire material conditions decimating vast swaths of the population, it is a threat that we ignore at our peril. Trump and those around him may not understand the term fascism, but they understand the alienation and angst among much of the population. They understand the power of nationalism, scapegoating and twisting facts. And when push comes to shove, so do corporations. Too many have been bamboozled into thinking they have evolved or are progressive-minded. Similar to agencies like the CIA or the military sector, their woke window dressing has been an effective one, focusing on the politics of identity rather than the vast inequities and injustices that their very existence perpetuate. Corporations are about profit, and they profit most when they are married to the institutions and power of the state. Without a doubt, the trajectory of capitalism, if not thwarted, is total fascism.

Attorney Steven Donziger is a current example of this. He won against Chevron-Texaco. Against Big Oil for creating a toxic sludge wasteland in the pristine Amazon rainforest killing countless Indigenous people and species, some of which we have never even seen before, and refusing to take any responsibility for it. Yet it was he who was punished. First jailed in his home, now in prison, on charges of contempt of a contemptable system. Next to the persecution of Julian Assange, the conviction of Steven Donziger counts as one of the most flagrant examples of the corruption of the US judicial system. It proves, without any pretense of illusion, that the judiciary is merely a handmaiden to corporations.

The stirring among American workers, and scores of others around the world, is encouraging. This is the result of decades of neoliberal policies that denuded the commons and replaced them with nothing but austerity, deregulation and privatization. And the stakes have never been higher. The current arrangement of economic and political power is a cult of death, for us and for the biosphere on which we all depend. It is a system of codified cruelty that benefits an ever-shrinking class of the super rich who become more and more detached from humanity and the needs of our besieged planet by the day.

There is no reformation that will alter the character of this arrangement. Our only hope lies in euthanizing the beast before it does even more damage. In uniting workers around the world and across all sectors of society in common cause. Because as capitalism dies it will not go down gracefully. It will lash out violently at anything in its path as it flails. And we should not expect any of its most ardent adherents to abandon the faith either. Indeed, most of them haven’t even realized that its prognosis is a terminal one.

Kenn Orphan   November 2021

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6 thoughts on “Capitalism is Dying, but don’t expect the patient to accept the prognosis

  1. Kit Webster

    Enjoyed the article. I express many of the same ideas in my book, Capitalism is Past Its Sell-By Date – From Incredible Success to Enabling Environmental and Resource Unsustainability, which may be of interest to you and your readers.

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    1. Ray Joseph Cormier

      Standing the test of Time, The Kansas City Times was quoting me as a Canadian over 2 Generations ago, on September 13, 1976, as Americans were celebrating their 1776 Revolution.
      Talk of a 2nd US Revolution is in the air as evidenced by the event of January 6.

      “He came to town for the Republican National Convention and will stay until the election in November TO DO GOD’S BIDDING: To tell the World, from Kansas City, this country has been found wanting and its days are numbered […] He gestured toward a gleaming church dome. “The gold dome is the symbol of BABYLON,” he said.” […] He wanted to bring to the Public’s attention an “idea being put out subtly and deceptively” by the government that we have to get prepared for a War with Russia.”

      That 1976 FUTURE is NOW with the Revelation of the details GENERALLY unfolding in the spirit of the letter.
      The World is waking up to see Americans may hasten “its days are numbered” part of the 1976 Vision, and waits with bated breath.

      https://rayjc.com/2013/09/01/signs-of-the-times/

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  2. Pingback: Capitalism Is Dying, But Don’t Expect The Patient To Accept The Prognosis, by Kenn Orphan – Dandelion Salad

  3. Ray Joseph Cormier

    What you are saying in this article, in other words is, The Writing is on the Wall!
    Most People understand what’s implied by the adage, but may not know the Bible History from where it comes.

    According to the record, the king of Ancient Babylon, now called Iraq, put on a State Dinner for 1000 of the Elite of the kingdom praising the gods of gold, silver, brass, iron, wood and stone.
    From then to now, it’s called “The Economy, Stupid!”

    Reading Exodus, I’ve always seen it as the 1st record of a “massive Labour Movement.” When the Egyptian Elite realized the Egyptian Economy would collapse without those slaves, it was too late to get them back.

    Those are only a few glimpses from the Old Testament. Those themes are carried forward to the New Testament.
    The Apostle James is very explicit in chapter 5 of his Book in the Book, writing of a Future Time OUR Generations are only now beginning to see unfold.
    Today it’s called the increasingly perceptible, Global Economic Inequality.

    Go to now, you rich men, weep and howl for your miseries that shall come upon you.
    Your riches are corrupted, and your garments are moth eaten.
    Your gold and silver is cankered; and the rust of them shall be a witness against you, and shall eat your flesh as it were fire. You have heaped treasure together for THE LAST DAYS.
    Behold, the hire of the labourers who have reaped down your fields, which is of you kept back by FRAUD, cries: and the cries of them which have reaped are entered into the ears of the Lord Almighty.
    You have lived in pleasure on the earth, and been wanton; you have nourished your hearts, as in a day of slaughter.
    You have condemned and killed the just; and he does not resist you.
    Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord. Behold, the husbandman waits for the precious fruit of the earth, and has long patience for it, until he receive the early and latter rain.
    You also be patient; establish your hearts: for the coming of the Lord draws close…….

    The West is terrified Xi in China is now taxing the Chinese Billionaires to nurture COMMON PROSPERITY.

    The Patience of Job the Man in the Old Testament, in the New Testament is the patience of Job the Work.
    That’s what it or the Individual to develop patience going against the flow in our 30 second sound byte Consumer Society consuming us.

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  4. Ray Joseph Cormier

    When Stephen Harper announced Taxpayer money would pay for a Monument to the Victims of Communism, I thought it was a waste of money deflecting from the more serious Victimization of the People of this World.

    He should have built a Monument to the Victims of White Christian European Colonialism of this World. There are many more Victims still paying the price.!

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