18 February 2007
Here in the UK we are, according to the statistics anyway, the fourth or fifth wealthiest nation on the planet at least in material terms but according to the latest UNICEF report we are at the bottom of the list of the twenty-one most developed nations when it comes to the treatment of of our children. Our unfortunate offspring are badly educated, suicidal, drugged out, violent, have the highest rate of sexually transmitted diseases in Europe, more teenage pregnancies and above all, alienated (for the full report see ‘State of the World’s Children’).
Predictably, the ruling elites are blaming the parents, especially single-parent families, a lack of ‘moral guidance’, whatever that is and a loss of belief in ‘traditional values’, whatever they are. Of course, the last thing to be blamed is capitalism but then what else is new?
When I first found myself washed up on this benighted and unhappy land after an absence of thirty years, I thought it was my reaction to being ‘exiled’ here, at least that’s what I was being told. Thus I tried, it seems unsuccessfully, to think positively about being here, reasoning that it mattered little where I lived, life goes on as they say, I just had to make the best of a bad lot.
However, it has been almost five years since found myself imprisoned here and although I have tried to make the best of it, this country disgusts me! Okay, it’s probably no better elsewhere in the so-called developed world but even so there is something profoundly unhealthy and fundamentally rotten about Blair’s Britain, above all it’s hypocrisy, mediocrity and smug and totally unfounded attitude of superiority borne no doubt out of a deep sense of insecurity, fear even, that all is not as it seems.
The bulk of the population bust their butts to pay off their credit card debts and house payments, work longer hours than any other country in the EU, yet have the lowest productivity of any country in the EU. Wealthy you say? But who is wealthy and by what yardstick is this alleged wealth measured and what kind of price is actually being paid above and beyond pounds and pence?
Wealth under capitalism is measured according to its GDP or its gross, domestic production (gross being the operative word here) which includes not merely its actual physical production of material products but the amount of ‘wealth’ generated through financial transactions and importantly, consumer spending which constitutes over 60% of the actual turnover of the economy, all of it financed by a staggering level of personal debt, something like £1.5 trillion (this figure excludes mortgage payments on houses). Millions of families live right on the edge of bankruptcy, surviving only by wracking up enormous debt. No wonder they’re unhappy.
Importantly, most of the ‘wealth’ generated comes not from actual production but from interest on debt and financial speculation in such commodities as currency and the global circuit of capital. London is considered to the centre of this global rip-off with trillions of dollars passing through the finance houses each and every day. And the disparity between rich and poor grows with every passing day.
For something like fifty years the bulk of the population could be persuaded to support capitalism in its ‘war on Communism’, the propaganda was extremely persuasive; we had freedom (of sorts), democracy (of sorts), and a growing standard of living, well most of us anyway. That it was largely financed by the massive exploitation of our colonial and former colonial subjects and what was effectively a war economy, was a reality conveniently missing, indeed hidden from view. And in any case, the alternative was presented to us as authoritarian communism, under which we would be denied the ‘freedom to choose’ from the avalanche of products that filled the high streets.
Now however, the true cost of that ‘freedom’ is revealed for all to see for not only has it resulted in a truly fucked up planetary ecology that threatens the entire world’s population, high streets and shopping malls full of products we neither need nor in real terms can actually afford, has left us feeling empty and unfulfilled, not so far off that of a junkie after his or her fix, craving more but not to get high, merely to create an illusion of normalcy.
The dream has turned into a nightmare of literally global proportions. Worse still, the promise of a socialist alternative, one where we shared a collective vision of solidarity and the full development of each person’s individual potential, based not on the personal acquisition of wealth but firstly on a guarantee of all the basic means of survival, health, housing, education and so forth, which would enable us to pursue the really important things in life such as the development of our personal relationships, a society in harmony with our beautiful planet, has been shattered by a tiny handful social psychopaths and their loyal servants.
Instead, we now live in a world of fear and without hope. We are in fact PROMISED no less, a future composed of more of the same! Incredibly, we are being sold a future based on nothing less than a continuation of the current situation. What rights we have won through generations of struggle, inexorably stripped away from us, one little bit at a time, all done in the name of preserving a junkie capitalist’s paradise.
Is it any wonder therefore that the youth of today have a ‘fuck you’ attitude, who can blame them. Their parents’ generation have, in the pursuit of personal aggrandizement, and illusory, short-term gain, thrown away their childrens’ future. I find it almost impossible to conceive that Blair’s Britain has actually succeeded in criminalising young people as a CLASS! It reveals not only the hatred and contempt that evil fuckers like Blair and his accomplices have for young people but reveals a ruling class desperate to preserve itself and at any cost including jettisoning our future.
This might seem like a cry in the wilderness, but only one thing can save us from ourselves and that is a return to that early vision of a socialism based on sharing, on modesty and respect for each other and for our home, Planet Earth. The alternative is just too horrible to contemplate. We already have a taster of the future our ruling classes have planned for us; spied on from cradle to grave, our every action scrutinised for even the slightest deviation, even our thoughts! Is this what we want and if not, what do we intend to do about it?
The irony and the paradox of the current situation is not lost on me, for even as we contemplate the mess we have made and learn more about the truly devastating effects that capitalism has had on our lives and that of all the life that we share our home with, we turn increasingly inward, helped, indeed aided and abetted by a parasitical class of apologists in the media, law and education for example, who have transformed our desires and cries for help into self-loathing and fear of our fellow humans.
We have very little time left but we do have the power to toss these despicable people out, to have done with their class and their kind once and for all. They are a stain on humanity, nothing less than mass murderers and grotesque gangsters masquerading as civilised humans.
And to those of you who respond by saying we have no power, no one to represent our aspirations, look no further than the millions of people who HAVE voiced their opposition to the policies of our genocidal leaders both here and abroad. Increasingly, entire countries are realising that the leaders of the imperium are more afraid of us than we are of them. Short of waging war on the entire planet (not so far-fetched I know), they know deep-down that they have run out of road. It really is up to us to say enough is enough and kiss these mother-fuckers goodbye.