Sunday, December 02, 2018

Green Capitalism - No Hope

Green capitalists promote the view that cash-strapped governments do not have the money to take care of nature and that the only way to get the billions of dollars needed for the preservation of water, forests, biodiversity, agriculture, and others is through private investment. They tell us the future of nature relies on the private sector, but the private sector will not invest the billions of dollars that they accumulated by exploiting labour and nature’s wealth, without incentives. And so, governments need to underwrite this new business an guarantee them making profits. 

 The green capitalist’s agenda is a cynical and opportunistic manipulation of the ecological and social crises. Rather than addressing the real structural causes of a profit-system, capitalists are using “green” language to launch a new round of expansion. Corporations and the financial sector need governments to create the institutional framework for the financialisation of nature. Many governments are willing partners in this project as they believe it will stimulate a new phase of growth and accumulation. Given the lessons of the world economic crises should we entrust the environment in the hands of the financiers? Describing climate change, global warming and world-wide pollution as market failures imply once the system is fixed business can resume as normal. The current environmental and climate crisis is not a simple market failure. The solution is not to put a price on nature. Nature is not a form of capital. It is wrong to say that we only value that which has a price, an owner, and brings profits. The market mechanisms that permit exchange among human beings and nations have proven incapable of an equitable distribution of wealth. Green capitalism is destructive because it is premised on the principle that the rules of market will save nature. We need to overthrow capitalism and develop a system that is based on the community of the Earth. Capitalism won't save the planet. Unless we stop envisioning humanity's raison d’ĂȘtre as the pursuit of accumulating capital, the environmental crisis cannot be broken.

Presidents, politicians, UN officials, civic leaders, and thousands of environmental activists from across the world to argue over what ‘green economics’ at conference after conference, signing their names to pledge after pledge.  "Green" capitalism is illusory. The destructive "grow or die" imperative of our market-driven system cannot be wished or regulated away. Capitalism is based on the premise of eternal growth. It is not a steady state, but a rapacious system that is never satiated. Under a capitalist system, not growing is not the same as standing still; it is moving backward. This is the fundamental contradiction. 

 Capitalism has utterly failed us. It has destroyed our communities, our democracy and the planet we live on. As long as people believe that capitalism is sustainable,  they'll focus on reforming it -- smoothing around the edges, re-writing regulations and so on. The Socialist Party though seeks a revolution that overthrows the whole system, clearing the way for something entirely new. Maximising accumulation is the force that drives capitalism. Appropriating nature and labour is the cheapest way for maximisation of accumulation. Capitalism is always about the theft of the people's sustenance and the looting of the source of their sustenance – Nature. 

Capitalists hate any sort of cost. Corporations don’t care much for building environmental costs into their production and spend millions of dollars in political lobbying to thwart such policies. This system where the master class tries their best to maximise profit by minimising cost, by appropriating labour, robbing nature, grabbing everything within their reach, creating pollution and destruction of the ecology and causing the ruination of nature are acts of crime - a crime against the planet, against posterity, against humanity. It is eco-murder! These are crimes that not only harm present generations but hurt future generations. Vulture environmentalism is vulture capitalism’s hungry and greedy twin. Capitalism is a system that must continually expand, a system that, by its very nature, will eventually come up against the reality of finite natural resources. By its very nature, the capitalism system stands against ecology and environment as its only concern is profit, nothing else. Standing up for the environment will inescapably lead to questioning this ever greedy hungry economic system. Nobody as yet ever talks about the CAUSE of all these "issues" and underlying reasons but they eventually will arrive at such questions.

An end to the reign of capitalism is necessary to save the Earth and all its people so that we can begin a human society offering hope for all and not just some. There can be no fundamental alteration of the status quo without the abolition of private and state property. This may seem a scary proposition and the fear of change is encouraged by those who currently benefit from the existing social order. We have not only to conquer the fear, but also to embrace a radically different perspective and way of being in the world. 

The ideas of the ruling class have hoodwinked us! Carefully crafted propaganda convince us that a society based upon individual greed, exploitation, and inequality is normal, natural and desirable. What kind of system is capitalism? This kind: If there are wars, that benefits the arms trade. If disease spreads that is good for the pharmaceutical industry. If hurricanes and earthquakes reaps destruction upon communities, that is good for the construction industry. Such are the realities of cold-blooded economics by which the people of the world have been organized for hundreds of years. Many of us starve for lack of food while others go on diets because they eat too much. Many of us sleep in doorways and on the streets, yet pampered pets have their own beds in warm homes. The idea of keeping people healthy, safe, secure and alive is reduced to doing so only if they are able to create profits for those selling health, safety, security, and life itself to the highest bidder in the market. If we can’t afford to buy those things and charity does not exist for us, we can all just drop dead. None of this happens because of individuals who are thoughtless or cold-hearted or murderous. But in a system which dictates that profit must be created in a market sale. As Marx explains "Catch a man a fish, and you can sell it to him. Teach a man to fish, and you ruin a wonderful business opportunity."

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