Skip to main content

The age of stagnating revolutions(?)

by system failure

Alain Badiou, the famous French philosopher, has told that "capitalism is the impose of a peculiar time, a time of a titular endless transformation, while in reality time is stagnating...".

This stagnating situation appears to be confirmed with a characteristic way through the movements of the latest years in the European south, East Mediterranean and the Arab World. What we see, is in essence, the result of societies trapped inside a one-dimensional cultural totalitarianism.

During the last three years, many riots of different intensities took place - and some of them are still active - in those countries, a combined area of more than 15 million square kilometres and total population of nearly 460 million people.

Despite the huge total size of these countries, someone would sense that almost nothing changes. Neither the importance of these riots seems to mobilize West, which is not particularly interested for the future of millions of people. The United States, specifically, are trying to get over with open fronts, probably due to the fact that some new big oil and natural gas fields have been found inside their territory. It appears that they only want to control Russian influence in Europe, by promoting oil and natural gas pipelines, controlled by Western companies. A recent example, is the deal of the TAP pipeline from Azerbaijan, to compete against South Stream, the Russian interests' pipeline.

In Egypt, for example, after the fall of the Mubarak regime, authoritarianism and police violence continued unabated. It seems that not too many things have changed in the everyday life of the Egyptians. The desperate effort of people to escape from the authoritarian state treatment, resulted to new riots and the fall of Morsi this time. But again, it seems that Egypt is facing a dead end, walking towards a disastrous civil war similar to that in Syria. Some people have given their lives, and no one knows how many others will be sacrificed, but for what purpose?

We know very few things for the situation now in Libya, which seems that is left in chaos. No one seems to be interested for the fortunes of people, but only for the oil and natural gas fields.

In Turkey, the intention of Erdogan to impose specific prohibitions, made people, especially young, to go out in the streets to protest. But, due to the different culture, Erdogan should normally had a different perception, compared to that of the Western leaders. However, he is another characteristic example of a leader who is unable to inspire a vision for the people and restricted from the one-dimensional economic perception of the neoliberal dictatorship. It is quite clear of how much hollow these prohibitions are, for the sake of Islamic culture because, on the other hand, Erdogan follows exactly the rules of the "new economy", which sacrifice everything for profit.

Traditional Islamic values, opposite to the passion for wealth and money lending at interest, totally incompatible with the Western lifestyle (promoted by the Turkish TV soap operas with the necessary particularities), have been lost a long time ago. However, Erdogan seems that he doesn't understand this reality and vainly tries to bring back the Islamic culture in Turkey. Besides, he didn't dare to challenge Turkish big media bosses instead of challenging people in the streets. He didn't dare to send the police to them.

The riots in Bulgaria is another characteristic case. People appear to be trapped between Right-wing governments and supposed Socialist governments, like the present one, which they adopt similar policies against the majority and for the benefit of the local economic oligarchy. Even the fear for the return of an old-type Communist regime, seems to be pointless.

In the European south, people are in trenches, defending and trying to save what they can. But in this case also, the "stagnating" situation is present and clear, confirmed by the fact that societies are unable to vision a totally different model of social organizing, at least for the present and in a massive level, and protest in the streets with economic-type requests which essentially belong to the totalitarianism of the neoliberal dictatorship. The pseudo-rationalism with which societies have been "poisoned" by this cultural totalitarianism, supposedly to prevent total destruction, in reality destroys human conquests of decades, and therefore, protests in the streets seem to be, at least, pointless too.

Someone could argue that these thoughts are rather simplified because the nature of riots is different in various countries, due to the different facts related mainly with the history and culture of each country. This might be true, but what about the commercials between live pictures of thousands of people in the Tahrir square in Egypt, for example? What do they mean? And, what about us, watching those people - and allow me to use another phrase of Badiou - like a spectacle? While at the same time, we, who taste all the consequences of the economic crisis, become a spectacle for others?

This cultural totalitarianism is like a powerful tool which aligns everything in the same direction. It cuts everything in a minimum size and impose itself. Thus, the question-mark in the headline of this text seems to be justified. Are we indeed living in the age of stagnating revolutions? Or, are these only riots that lead to nowhere? People who sacrifice their lives for nothing?

Comments

  1. For what is worth, although I'm far from being a living fossil, at my age (50+) I've seen many things.

    People will try to avoid reaching to extremes for as long as possible. They will put up to all sorts of abuses, just so as not to rock the boat.

    And then, one day, for something seemingly trivial, they explode. The question is what happens after that.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, nice to see you back. Well, I think it happens already. Today, people died in Egypt. What is more extreme than this? Of course I understand your thought, because we don't have yet "uncontrolled" massive riots in many countries simultaneously.

      Well maybe this is the case. In such a populated planet, first time in history, we need to see massive riots in many countries to reach a critical mass which will make the difference.

      But I wonder as you, what happens after that because there is no alternative even in theoretical level in people's minds. This is the key issue here. This cultural totalitarianism spreads everywhere, erasing every other alternative. More and more people are thinking through its terms, especially new generations.

      We need an alternative, truly radical, in order to return back to the real evolution as humanity.

      Delete
  2. How many times and in how many places did peasants in Medieval times rise up against their lords? I don't think the present situation is new. Revolutions by definition, unless it's a leadership revolution (basically a coup, or what has been happening in Egypt), are likely to fail.

    Capitalism, like Feudalism, is strong enough to survive quite a number of revolutions. Things will change if the conditions and the culture of the population change. Like the rise of the cities and the new economic power of the bourgeois that lead to end of Feudalism.

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Manufacturing uncritical thinking

by system failure
I was thinking about writing something related to a certain behavioural pattern that we often meet in the mainstream media journalist army. I was inspired by the impressively loud example of The New York Times' Bari Weiss, and how it was presented by Jimmy Dore in his show.


During this particular discussion with Joe Rogan, Weiss rushed to paint US presidential candidate, Tulsi Gabbard, as an "Assad toady", without even knowing what the characterization means. As Dore aptly pointed out: "That's what's called a 'received opinion'. So, it's not her own opinion. She has heard other people in her neoliberal bubble say that stuff, so she just repeats it. She doesn't even know what the insult means."
Ben Norton wrote on Twitter: "Neocon NY Times columnist Bari Weiss smeared Tulsi Gabbard (who bravely opposed regime change and US support for Salafi-jihadist contras) as an "Assad toady," then couldn't spell/de…

Greece is about to become the blueprint for modern feudalism

globinfo freexchange
After almost ten years of an unprecedented crisis, Greece has been trapped into an ongoing, slow motion recession. The economy still struggling hard to recover, with unemployment and national debt being permanently in a red alarm mode.
As has been already pointed out, the result of the recent Greek national elections could be characterized "paradoxical" mainly for two reasons: 
First, the voters gave a clear governmental order to one of the traditional powers of the old political system, which are highly responsible for the Greek crisis that erupted in 2010. Several top names of the new government, and even New Democracy leader, Kyriakos Mitsotakis, have been accused of being involved in various corruption scandals, in the not so distant past.

Second, the fact that the voters elected perhaps the most fanatically neoliberal government ever. This means that Mitsotakis administration is expected to implement the brutal neoliberal policies imposed by Greece&…

How Joe Biden’s privatization plans helped doom Latin America and fuel the migration crisis

On the campaign trail, Joe Biden has boasted of his role in transforming Colombia and Central America through ambitious economic and security programs. Colombians and Hondurans tell The Grayzone about the damage his plans did to their societies.
by Max Blumenthal
Part 8 - Gutting public healthcare, driving more migration
The Alliance for Prosperity also commissioned the privatization of health services through a deceptively named program called the Social Protection Framework Law, or la Ley Marco de Protección Social.

Promoted by Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernández as a needed reform, the scheme was advanced through a classic shock doctrine-style episode: In 2015, close associates of Hernández siphoned some $300 million from the Honduran Institute for Social Services (IHSS) into private businesses, starving hospitals of supplies and causing several thousand excess deaths, mostly among the poor.
With the medical sector in shambles, Hondurans were then forced to seek healthcare from …

As Boris Johnson unleashes ultimate threat against Bremain capitalist faction, the British working class is suddenly in front of a unique opportunity

globinfo freexchange

In the merciless endo-capitalist war around Brexit, Boris Johnson decided to unleash the ultimate threat against Bremain capitalist faction. That is, a snap election with the 'danger' of a Labour victory under Jeremy Corbyn, which would be neoliberal capitalists' worst nightmare.
As already pointed out, despite the capitalist civil war, both major factions of the British capital remain deeply neoliberal in their ideological core. And therefore, both factions see a potential Labour government under Jeremy Corbyn, as a major threat.
Indeed, as ZeroHedgereported
As Prime Minister Boris Johnson faces the prospect of his rule being cut short, wealthy Britons have a message for Johnson's most likely successor: A 'no deal' Brexit makes no difference to them. But if Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn becomes PM, they will flee in droves, taking their money with them

[...]

The chairman of one Swiss asset manager who helps wealthy Britons shield th…

Tucker Carlson accidentally promotes one of the most anti-capitalist, real-Left positions!

globinfo freexchange 
We wouldn't believe it if we wouldn't have seen it and hear it with our own eyes and ears, but the following phrase came out from Tucker Carlson's mouth:

                    Every minute you are angry about race, is a minute you are not thinking about class, which, of course, is the real divide in this country. Working class people of all colors have a lot more in common - infinitely more in common with each other, than they do with some overpaid MSNBC anchor. And if you are allowed to think about that for long enough, you might start get unauthorized ideas about economics. And that would be disruptive to a very lucrative status quo. So, they whip you into a frenzy of racial fear so that it never enters your mind. It's a diversion. Everyone hates each other, they get to keep their money.
Here's why they're pushing racial division: so you won't notice the real divide, which is economic. pic.twitter.com/ZVLvQn2u9O — Tucker Carlson (@Tuck…

Bernie finally declares war on neoliberal fascists who destroy the planet

globinfo freexchange
Bernie Sanders proved again why he should be the next president of the United States. This time, he declared war on the neoliberal fascists who are destroying the planet on behalf of the corporate beasts.
Bernie tweeted:
                    Climate change is a global emergency. Bolsonaro and his corporate cronies are burning the Amazon rainforest for personal profit and jeopardizing our planet's survival. My Green New Deal will impose climate sanctions against corporations that threaten our global climate goals.
Climate change is a global emergency. Bolsonaro and his corporate cronies are burning the Amazon rainforest for personal profit and jeopardizing our planet's survival.

My #GreenNewDeal will impose climate sanctions against corporations that threaten our global climate goals. https://t.co/erZzHozviQ — Bernie Sanders (@BernieSanders) August 22, 2019
Recall that the previous right-wing corporate puppet in Brazil, Michel Temer, opened the door to t…

Roger Waters for Julian Assange

globinfo freexchange
On Monday, 3 Sept, Roger Waters of Pink Floyd will perform his classic 'Wish You Here' for Julian Assange outside the Home Office (interior ministry) in Marsham Street in the heart of London. John Pilger will be speaking. Join us at 6pm in solidarity with Britain's political prisoner.

On Monday, 3 Sept, Roger Waters of Pink Floyd will perform his classic 'Wish You Here' for Julian #Assange outside the Home Office (interior ministry) in Marsham Street in the heart of London. I will be speaking. Join us at 6pm in solidarity with Britain's political prisoner. pic.twitter.com/Lytg2GCZVQ — John Pilger (@johnpilger) August 30, 2019


Καταιγίδα επιχειρήσεων αποπροσανατολισμού από το Μητσοτακικό καθεστώς με τη βοήθεια της τραπεζομιντιακής χούντας

globinfo freexchange

Ο μηχανισμός του εγχώριου νεοφιλελεύθερου καθεστώτος επιδόθηκε τις τελευταίες μέρες σε έναν καταιγισμό επιχειρήσεων αποπροσανατολισμού προς τέρψιν του πόπολου, το οποίο έδωσε αυτοδυναμία στην πολιτική του συνιστώσα. Δηλαδή, στη χειρότερη δεξιά της μεταπολίτευσης.
Μετά το ταξίδι Μητσοτάκη στη Γαλλία, όπου είδαμε ένα χιλιοπαιγμένο έργο, το σόου του αποπροσανατολισμού ξεκίνησε από το Μάτι. Εκεί είχαμε ένα διπλό χτύπημα. Από τη μια τον Μητσοτάκη να ποζάρει στα καμμένα, διατυμπανίζοντας τη δήθεν αποτελεσματική του κυβέρνηση. Από την άλλη, την διαφήμιση των "καλών ιδιωτών", οι οποίοι ως καλοί Σαμαρείτες, ανέλαβαν δήθεν αφιλοκερδώς (Αφιλοκερδώς ΑΕ, όπως έλεγε και ο αξέχαστος Τζιμάκος), να καθαρίσουν την περιοχή από την επικίνδυνη καύσιμη ύλη.
Αμέσως μετά, απολαύσαμε άλλη μια κωμωδία από τις δυνάμεις καταστολής που έκαναν έφοδο στα Εξάρχεια για να τα "καθαρίσουν" από τους μετανάστες. Οι νεοφιλέλεδες της δεξιάς και τα ακροδεξιά δεκανίκια τους είναι μανο…

Citibank blocks funds for insulin: more than 450,000 Venezuelans affected

The US bank Citibank blocked, in August this year, part of the funds destined to import 300 thousand doses of insulin, a criminal act that affects more than 450 thousand patients, the Venezuelan Ministry of Economy and Finance reported.

On the other hand, the BSN Medical laboratory, based in Colombia, after receiving payment for the purchase of 2 million units of antimalarial treatment, denied the clearance of the drugs.
The ministry indicated that this fact caused the Swiss bank UBS AG to block the transactions made by the country with the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), destined for the purchase of vaccines for the immunization program.
Given this circumstance, Venezuela and PAHO sought alternatives with banks from other countries, although this situation led to a 4 month delay in the immunization program.

The national government also revealed that other pharmaceutical transnationals such as Pfizer and Novartis refuse to sell medicines, reagents and supplies to Venezuela.
F…

The untold Socialist history of the United States

globinfo freexchange

Abby Martin spoke with renowned Marxist Economist Richard Wolff to discuss the growing popularity of Socialism under Trump and its historical roots in America, misconceptions about Russia and China’s economic success and Marx’s theory of alienation and monopoly capitalism.

Wolff explains:

A hundred years ago, 1916 to be precise, was the first time that the Socialist Party of America put forward a candidate for president. His name was Allan Benson and he ran for president a hundred years ago and he got 600,000 votes in the United States. That worked out to three percent of the vote.
The Socialist Party thought that was a good beginning, so they ran again four years later, in 1920, little less than a hundred years ago, and they had a different candidate. A man named Eugene Victor Debs, a head of the railway Workers Union, very good orator. And he did better. He got 900,000 votes. That's a 50% increase in four years, four percent of the total vote.
Four yea…