Tuesday, 28 December 2010

The winter of Discontent continues: The neo-liberal generation and the rise of the left


“A man believes he is a piece of grain and, subsequently, fears that a chicken will eat him. Eventually, the delusional man goes to therapy; where, ultimately, he becomes convinced he is not a piece of grain; however, the man still feels anxious about the chicken and returns to the therapist. Bewildered, the therapist asks, “Why are you still afraid of the chicken? You know you’re not a piece of grain!” To which the man replies, “Yes, I know I’m not a piece of grain, but does the chicken know I’m not?”

This joke, told by Zizek, signifies the problem of our contemporary political economy, that being... we need a new chicken. Currently neo-liberalism functions as the ideological element which operates, in much of the same way as religion does, through people’s disbelief being rendered obsolete through the subsequent reliance on other people’s beliefs. That is to say, people only believe in neo-liberalism or religion through the presupposition that someone else believes that these systems of rule and organisation function and should continue to function through the facade that each system inherently adopts:

In the case of religion; religion makes bad people good, where in effect the opposite is true, only religion functions for a bad person to be good. Such an assumption would support the systemic infiltration of paedophiles in the Catholic Church. 

As for the facade of neo-liberalism; neo-liberalism claims to uphold free market capitalism and the simultaneity of progressive policies within reciprocal governmental policies, however ‘neo-liberal’ states have an ever increasing interference in the markets, from the interventions during the banking crisis, to the corrupt subsidising of North American and European farming (for an advanced article on farming subsidies please see:   http://www.canadiancattlemen.ca/issues/ISArticle.asp?aid=1000398327&PC=FBC&issue=12242010), whilst also increasing the rolling back of the welfare state, at the whim of the private sector. Such a dynamic has been pushing Western democratic systems to be more inclined toward authoritarian policies.

The exposure of the ruling ideologies of our times, religion and capitalism is inevitable. It is praxis of the way ideology functions. Eventually a left wing ruling ideology, if it ever becomes a reality in Europe, will be subjected to particular decays and will perhaps once again require radical reform. Herein lays the contemporary issue at hand...

It is no longer the task of the left to expose the corruption of ‘neo-liberal’ capitalism, that job can almost be left for capitalism to do to itself. People are, substantially, starting to doubt weather other people really believe in capitalism and its inability to better the lives of even the Middle Classes, let alone the Workers!

The opposition to Capitalism and right-wing politics has spontaneously emerged and will continue to grow. It is the task of left wing political dissidents to come together to create and develop viable political policies and opposition capable of challenging, the power, of political monopolies, which have existed for too long. This dynamic is increasingly repressing any true democratic representation of the workers of Europe.
The Left

A new class is emerging; the modern day Proletariat (journalists, academics, artists, play-writes, musicians, writers, labourers, students and the like). This new Proletariat will not attain the wealth shared by, the fictitious, middle class (created by Thatcher and her cronies). If contemporary Proletariats are to be true radicals we will not even aspire to the accumulation of, obscene and oppressive, capital. The only way that the rich can secure the accumulation of profit is to make the poor poorer, resulting in society’s construction of privileges being for the exclusivity of the wretched ‘deserving’ (inherited) petty Bourgeoisie.  

Our civility exists in our civil rights and cultural processes. We must use these rights to the fullest extent through the continuation of; University occupations, public protests, unashamed support for Trade Unions and the continuation of cultural opposition to the fundamental cornerstone of capitalism – cultural capitalism (see Zizek, 2010, First as Tragedy then as Farce).

The youth, the Workers, and anyone who associates themselves with the struggles of today’s Left in Europe share the uncertainty of the future (16 – 25 year olds are the largest category of unemployed in the UK, with further unemployment immanent). It is for this reason that the Left have become radicalised within the small populace of those who have had suspicions already about the dubious ethical nature of the capitalist system. Those in the majority, who have decided to follow capitalism, will need convincing.

We are like the Bolsheviks (Russian for the majority). The Bolshevik party started as the minority but named themselves so through, the presupposition, that they would in turn become the majority.  We must remember the catastrophe of Stalin (meaning-the iron man), an indiscriminate mass murderer, tyrant, and the Judas of communism and move with the knowledge that radical political change may have within their ranks betrayers to the struggle. It was Stalin who betrayed Leon Trotsky, had Trotsky won the leadership of the Bolshevik party the development of Russian communism would have certainly trod a better path!

Quickly democracy in Europe is facing its biggest challenge in history since WWII. European democracy is becoming more and more right wing and in most instances autocratic. This is not so surprising. When we take a glance to the Eastern metropolises emerging on scales which far surpass the pace at which modernisation occurred in the West.

Political leaders and corporations have certainly taken note of authoritarian Asian capitalism. The West once thought that democracy was an inevitable consequence of capitalism; now we see Asian authoritarian capitalism dominating the world economy, alongside the US and Europe. Based on trajectory alone the Asian economy will surpass both continents in the coming decade.

We have our window of opportunity. At the beginning of the latest economic crisis, (which will persist far into the next decade), to fill the void of the left. I have no doubt that this will naturally occur as the momentum at which opposition to this illegitimate government has taken force.

The Winter of discontent goes on. It is the aim of all those who share the struggles against the decrepit system of capitalism (which is bringing about the degradation of democracy in around the world and tearing up the life of workers, and our ecology, into a dynamic best explained by Gorgio Agamben as the homo sacer; a life that is worth killing but not sacrificing) to change the contours of history and make the Left a future reality. The Left needs to unite its defragmented grass-roots into substantial opposition and pose itself as the only alternative...

Sunday, 19 December 2010

Our Revolution: The dangers of two party politics

A new politics is emerging, which has sent British politics down a new and radical path (as with many major political events) we never saw coming. Unpredictable events in politics tend to be instances which manage to ignite a political re-insurgence in the youth. Moments, such as this we now in Britain are experiencing should be taken with the utmost importance and seriousness. This moment holds the potential to change the dimensions and contours of British politics by the left filling the void left by the class war this government ignited. This is the time that all those who feel affiliated with the struggle of 21st century socialism’s, quest for workers liberty, just and ethical wage divisions, the future of our decayed welfare system, the destruction of our democratic system and our need to construct a more representative and democratic political system For these reasons we need to become active and dedicate our energies on debating and implementing the tomorrow we once never thought possible. 

Unwittingly on May the 12th David Cameron and Nick Clegg forged a coalition which is attempting and succeeding to condemn the Workers of Britain. The very people who operate the fundamental mechanisms our state requires to operate: hospitals and care home staff, factory workers, milk workers, farmers, bin workers, transport workers, postal workers, teachers, academics, free lance musicians, shop assistants, IT workers, and journalists. The actions of the coalition government have managed to do something the Left has been trying and failing to do since 1968. That is to expose the corrupt figure of the politician and their politics, for all to see. Clegg and Cameron stand naked before our very eyes and all those with the apt ability to see the spectacle is certainly mortified, perhaps horrified, but definitely not surprised- as the Left had the subconscious ability to spontaneously mobilise and take to the streets in the first skirmishes with the state that have the potential to impose the underclass radical left onto the British political spectrum.

The movement we have seen unrelentingly spill out onto the streets with all the vibrancy and energy of a new social class with an essentially proletarian character and culture, has predominantly emanated out of the halls of University campuses around the UK. I hope also too in the work place and even within the enemy itself, the petty bourgeoisie. The rise in opposition is intrinsically linked to the dangerous political formation of a British government, Conservative throughout but, with the addition of the Liberal Democrats, once our third opposing political party - the Liberal Democrats were traditionally in parliament to serve as an-other representative, used to hold the leading party to account in attempts to force their agenda into policy construction -  however, with the Liberal Democrats insufficient sway of the British public they were destined to never hold the keys to 10 Downing Street.

When a window of opportunity presented itself to the Liberal Democrats they allowed the complete demise of their own party, for this they should never be forgiven, just as the elitist figure of the Conservative party, in particular, its front bench should never be forgiven, and all those careerist politicians which stand before us. Contemporary politicians and subsequently representatives of the British civility no longer represent or even attempt to represent the majority. What this government is doing is forcing the deficit upon the workers and students of Britain.

The deficit has been accumulated by; the petty Bourgeoisie, stockbrokers, investment bankers, banks, tax evading business and business people, at the expense of not only the workers of Britain but more poignantly on the workers of the world. It is in this instance that a thought must go to those living in the Congo, the biggest humanitarian catastrophe of our times, where over 5,000,000 people have perished, and 40% of its population have been raped. This conflict is fuelled by the DRC’s mineral resources in particular coltan a very rare mineral used in electronic equipment.

Events such as the Congo resonate with the left on levels of empathy that a capitalist bourgeois is incapable of mustering. They may give unsurpassable amounts of much needed charity however, they will reside to the assumption that this is the way of the world; I give to charity and contribute to charities very existence. For those of us on the left we want to help and the only way we can help is by attempting to create new political modes and new modes of economy as a result of the new politics. Human life and the way we interact with our habitat is what are needed, not the accumulation of materials worth far more than any price tag can symbolise. We live on a finite planet and we must act responsibly.

What the student protests across the UK demonstrate is that there is a will to fight against a government we never wanted. How long the spirit of the youth will last and to what degree it will infect the workers of Britain remain to be seen, the Tube workers are leading the workers resistance and they are with the students when we march. The marches we have seen need to expand; we need to march against this government when they attack in the class war, again and again. This is just the beginning. Workers and students unite, with solidarity and with dignity.   

Music in the 21st century

Western in all its profanities,
Shapeless, crude, defunct, devoid of substance and proletarian character,
Gar gar can gar gar does, jargon from formless material
Empty virtues, insignificant truths, repeated jouissance
Myths of immortality, riches, fame,
Realities of oppression, envy, fear,
Empty spaces, imposed voids,
Explained by the moral compass of history, filled by no-one,
                                   Here and there, joy, jam, clash, emerged from event horizons, crushed by Fukuyama and his dominions,

The event horizons stirs once more, take heed, remember, reconstruct, devise,
Our moral compass under attack,
The old world is dying, and the new world struggles to be born: now is the time of monsters,
Play to the tune of the proletariat once again,
Socialists, let our impulses guide,
Awaken from this Fukuyama slumber,
Remember, the moral struggles of the past, for we face battle,
No longer shall the people be misrepresented, by petty bourgeoisie,

We now know stars die,
Devise a world where there is no poverty, injustice or domination,
These are our commons,
In this world we must unite,
Spread the word,

Arise Europe
Greece, France, Italy, Spain, Britain
We have been alienated for too long,
Emancipate our struggles,
Persuade those doubters, tomorrow, too late,
Play the tunes we long to hear off the radio and into our ears.