Wages of capitalism
“Compatriots. Due to the situation, which has evolved due to the formation of Commonwealth of Independent States, I hereby discontinue my activities at the post of the President of the USSR.” With these words, the General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union and the President of the Soviet Union, Mikhail Sergeyevich Gorbachev ended the 80-year experiment of communism in Russia, her satellite states in Central Asia, and her holding in Eastern Europe, on Christmas Day, in 1991. The capitulation of the Party of Lenin to economic and political realities beleaguering the USSR, with Russia itself rapidly, or rather recklessly, “privatising” national industries conforming to Western “capitalist” model, the West placed “capitalism” in the box of “self-evident” truths. The humanist economic emphasis upon private property, capital accumulation, global competitive markets, and “voluntary” exchange, coupled with the humanist political theory prioritising the “individual,” his freedoms, and his rights over all other considerations had risen to become the dominant world religion of the post-Cold War era.
Thirty years on, from the apparent victory of the Western pre-Marx humanist faction over that of their Eastern heretical brethren, the foundations of the new world religious order seems to be crumbling. Having indoctrinated their populace to consider their individual primacy over their community, society, and the state with the only purpose in life accumulation of capital/wealth, the West has created a social matrix, in which the members are willing to auction off every tradition, custom, relationship, obligations, and duties, if such prostitution accrues them individual capital gains. Capital, abstracted into figures on computer screens, now rule the lives of the empty drones that flitter about spending all their time consuming. Even the language of commerce, the Anglophone, betrays the mercantile baseness of its heritage; time is “spent” on entertainment, “invested” on education, “saved” via new baubles. Even the very lives of the so-called “individual” is nothing more than commodity to be bought and sold.
What has their new humanist world religion profit the West? A society that has jettisoned all moral values for consensus and accumulation of baubles, drowning in hedonism and self gratification. A society, in which mothers and fathers are compelled to spend most, if not all, of their waking hours chasing imaginary numbers on computer screens, while their children are neglected. A society, in which their young have no connection to their past, exist to consume in the present, and have no future worth living. A society so dependent upon consumption that it must continually mortgage the future, in order to consume the present, while selling off their heritage to curious foreign onlookers. A society that has dismantled all critical economic activities to be “outsourced” in foreign lands, in order to better accumulate imaginary numbers. A society that can not even feed itself, without dependence on outsourced grain shipments regularly entering their harbors. A society filled with empty drones, rabidly consuming the next insipid entertainment, in order to escape from their empty, purposeless existence, waiting to die alone, in isolated cells, staring at black mirrors that reflect their own emptiness. When their world collapses around them, how will these empty souls survive?
Capitalism is another failed experiment, no different from its heretical branch of communism. Men do not exist in vacuum of history, tradition, community, society, and his geography. His preferences derive from his cultural tradition that developed as a consequence of singular geographical realities. His physical condition depends upon the evolutionary pressures, to which his forebears adapted, in an unbroken chain of human experience. His identity derives from his relation with and obligation towards his immediate community and the larger society. Man is not an “individual” entitled with “rights” to exercise his “freedom” with no regard towards his community, society, and heritage. Western societies must repudiate the humanist fallacy of “individuality,” and rediscover what it means to truly exist in a society. When man has learned to overcome the crass demands of his flesh and bone, and when he has learned to extend his awareness to encompass the self of the group, the self of his community, the self of his history, only then can an enlightened society be possible.