Western culture developed in its subjects a self-centered pursuit of personal gain and disrespect for social organization. Beyond wars, when community is identified as nation, the western program teaches i-me-mine to the exclusion of we-us-ours, unless addressing identity groups not yet fully market incorporated. Older cultures were treated as primitive for their communalism, their attachment to place and their lack of individualist obsession. But the development of personal ego and private property that was progressive to some was socially regressive to others.
Striving for personal gain at another's expense destroyed any balance between self and other and helped rationalize attacks on nature as a form of progress. The system's economics demand pursuit of private interests without regard for moral principles. It demands a supply of cheap labor and creates an ever-widening social gap between the rich minority and its servant majority. A world organized by selfish individualism and competitive identity groups is courting disaster which can only be avoided by a democratic, cooperative balance achieved among all people.
What passes for western democracy usually means accepting slightly less evil as slightly more good. Most governments are creatures of private capital, with supposed majority rule coming only after it purchases candidates marketed in elections that replicate commodity sales at the mall. But the rising demand for real democracy, most obvious in the Arab world, is a sign that humanity will no longer tolerate living under the reign of these minorities and the threat they represent.
The dangers of war, racism, pollution, climate change and the political economics that profit from such madness grow worse each day. Oppression of majorities by minorities cannot continue, nor can use of the fossil fuels that powered some of our past and are now a threat to destroy much if not all of our future.
While many work to change the world, they often continue the profit and loss marketing which has brought the present crisis. This is advocating cancer as a treatment for AIDS. A social disease cannot be cured by indulging in further unprotected global economics.
The present situations in Libya and Japan are indicative of the historic turning point humanity has reached.
Under the guise of humanitarian aid against supposed genocide, as usual identified in an individual demon, bloody civil war is being waged in Libya to support a dictatorship of capital. Libya, one among only five nations in the world without a privately controlled national bank - until its "rebels" started one with the collusion of international finance - may resolve whether minority capital maintains control or national democratic power can be achieved. Capital's disinformation media cartel has reduced a vital national struggle with serious implications for humanity to a fairy tale about an evil dictator.
The past victim of nuclear warfare, Japan is experiencing what may be the worst nuclear energy disaster in history. Under the guise of cleaner, safer nuclear power, the Japanese tragedy reveals the danger of such private benefit gained at such social cost. Finance capital places the full burden of paying for nuclear plants on society while its employees, like President Obama, call for more nuclear energy regardless of potential social calamities. We have no idea nor has there been any debate among the people as to exactly what the risk of nuclear power entails. Again, minority wealth rules and majority society pays the price.
These two national crises exemplify humanity's critical problem; profits that accrue to a handful of global capitalists mean further deadly loss suffered by billions of earth dwellers through the deadly use of fossil fuels and the domination of governments by rich minorities.
The future calls for democratically controlled state power exercised in centrally overseeing decentralized local power, and a balance between global, national and local communities. This can only happen with more equitable sharing of resources, rather than wealth accruing to some at the expense of all. New energy forms are as important as new governing forms. The continued rape of the earth to acquire energy owned by private capital is countered by the need for democratic sources of energy available to all who experience sun light and wind power. These cannot be marketed as private property.
Change can seem an insurmountable obstacle in a world divided into competing individuals and groups, but that is the source of our problem. Its radical transformation is our solution. Another world is not only possible, but also absolutely necessary in order to overcome the twin terrors of capital's war on humans and earth itself.
We are witnessing the end of fossil fuel powered minority dominated society, the backbone of global capitalism. We need to start using renewable energy that is available above the ground and end the rape of earth's interior to suck out fuel that destroys earth as it is removed and pollutes when transformed into carbons and green house gas. Democracy will be far more possible when people see through myths about evil dictators and allegedly benign energy sources that cover the reality of a system that is a danger to the survival of the human race.
Frank Scott writes political commentary and satire which appears in print in The Independent Monitor and online at the blog Legalienate