Friday, 23 November 2007

Reclaim the world...

by Plot Tracer

Adbusters by HiggleDpiggle Snoats

When Bush, Cheney et al are jailed or are in the dank dungeon of history- reviled by all and are the poetic monsters of myth like the child catcher or the Thatcher, will they be harmless because life has gone on, death will have meant nothing and the rich have ensured the feathered nest of their progeny? Are they capitalisms fall guys, the men sent forth to sacrifice their place in history in order for the Reaganite/Thatcherite bastard child to grow and sew its poison in a world now so fractured and turned on its head that Orwellian prediction seems a little niave? Or will the world know them for what they are?

Not long ago in the history of western capitalism, conservatives had accepted the inevitability of "socialism". In the uk PT (Pre-Thatcher), the Tories, mostly made up of the landed aristocracy, rapacious businessmen and wage slaves suffering from "Stockholm Syndrome" knew that the UK would be a socialist economy very soon. The British Labour Party knew it and was preparing for it in stages, just as the Tories were trying to slow down its inevitability. Then came the Thatcher project. It was a way of halting the peoples progress. It was a way to seize the means of production and the resources back again. It was a way to dash hope and ensure people accepted their enslavement as inevitable. A way for the rich to get richer and for them to do so by ensuring resources were not shared. Progress. All of the people who benefited from state owned heavy industries lost livable incomes. Those who did not benefit from this social economy, that is the land owners and the greedy, then found that instead of their huge incomes and bank balances being taxed in a way that meant few UK families living in poverty, their taxes were being reduced and they were able to set up factories and businesses and were re-enabled to exploit the misery that the demolition of the social economy had bestowed upon millions of people.

In the country I live in - Scotland, nearly one in three children live in poverty. This is the country of Adam Smith and many other luminaries of economic thought. Scotland resisted Thatcher and her rolling out of the neo-liberal re-capturing of the world from the majority. Scotland paid for this dearly- receiving the experimentation of the poll tax and the total decimation of its economic base- heavy industry. In the name of progress, industries were sold off for a song and broken up and sold on again for the enrichment of the few and the impoverishment of the many. But Scotland did not forget... And Scotland voted out Thatchers party. Not that this did any good- Scotland had to put up with a voting system that means that whatever political party wins in England, rules the UK. For years, Scotland put up with the brutal regime of the Thatcherites. Then in 1997, the party who had been the hope of the poor and disenfranchised came to power. There was audible relief when the Scots, at last, were to be governed by the party they had voted for. The party who would deliver them from this Thatcherite/Reaganite/neo-liberal nightmare. But there was a problem. The Labour party had become Thatcherite in secret. Scottish poverty increased. The Labour party continued to do things people did not want. Housing stock was sold off. Schools and hospitals were closed down, prescription charges increased, whole towns became ghettos of second and third generation unemployed... Villages of the damned, damned by the greed of the monied. Damned by a government that had sold them out because of its fear of the rich who were funding it. Damned by those who could see no further than their bank balance and their own gratification. But then the Scots turned. First, the left started to rise. Radicals were elected and then the opportunity to get rid of those who sold them out came along. The scots were awakening. The Scots won't forgive their newly elected government if it continues the rush to the lowest common denominator.

People across the world are awakening. There are countries across the world awakening to the reality of what they have been sold as "progress". Countries are beginning to question the neo-liberalism of America and the imperial west. Countries from Europe to South America are beginning to murmur (and in some cases, shout) their dissatisfaction. They are finding that their wrecked community is not unique - the neo-liberal project has meant misery worldwide and that the Paris Hilton lifestyle is one that they are paying for, but not living. The rich Pete Doherty heroin addiction only destroys Doherty, but the Govan heroin addiction destroys community and pits poor against poor. The glamour of the addiction and the consumerist lifestyle only works if you have power and money. If not, it destroys. The "ordinary Bush" is actually a millionaire and has been a millionaire all his life, has been bailed out of trouble all his life by money and power rather than his life destroyed by the drink and drugs and jobloss he so casually dismisses as his past. How many people in the schemes of Glasgow or the "sink estates" of London or the projects of Harlem have all of those chances or money thrown at them to help them through?

These monied people talk about the waste of money in our education system or welfare- yet taking Bush as a role model, in order to reach your potential, you need a baseball team to destroy and thousands of pound in rehab. If everyone were to have those opportunities to waste money, and resources, to quote the Mi Kmaq peoples of North America, "mother earth will cleanse herself of the offending organism that is killing her." all of those resources spent on one man's mistakes and it was not enough. He had to turn to the state to get more resources to flush down the toilet. But unfortunately his mistakes didn't just effect his health. The solidification of the neo-liberal project is crumbling. The Gipper, Maggie Thatcher the milk snatcher, the Bush family, Blair, Clinton and all of those people who took peoples hope and sold it off to those who party on it and label the poor, neds, chavs and whitetrash... they will go down in history as those who cast millions to their deaths and to misery and to the scraps. The myths of the future will have their names synonymous with evil and greed and death and mayhem. They may go to their graves believing in their victory, but they are damned to hell with the other monsters of history. Are they fall guys? Maybe- but they have been willing and they have profited by their criminalising of millions of poor. They have profited from the misery and death in their warzones and they have profited from the pittance wage enslavement of twothirds world. They have profited from the decimation of towns and communities by unemployment and drugs. They have profited by the disempowerment of the poor. They have profited by the parcelling of the land and the resources. They have profited from the ecological disasters they have created. And they have no conscience about it. The only way these people will regret anything, is when they have to pay.

Lets reclaim the world for the many and throw this failed system on the junk heap of the past and lets warn future generations with our new mythical creatures. Bush the baby killer. Blair his henchman. And the lovers Thatcher and Reagan, the bastards who stole the hopes and lives of millions. As a friend of mine has said, “this is by no means a foregone conclusion if the world remains sleepwalking towards perpetual slavery.” If we don’t collectively wake up, then that is surely what we are heading for.

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1 comment:

Garrett Larkham said...

Hear Hear!! I couldn't have said it any better myself.
We can take some small comfort in knowing that the likes of Bush and Cheney have been deserted by the middle classes who were conned into voting for them.
I hate to be smug, but here in Canada the Conservative Party is known more for its fiscal, rather than social conservatism. In our House of Commons, MPs were granted free votes on Capital Punishment (nay), Abortion (yey), and Gay Marriage (yey).
And now excuse me; I'm going outside to kiss the 12 centimetres of snow that fell yesterday.