Wednesday, August 28, 2019

We have more power than we think

When the Socialist Party advocates socialism it is bombarded with the objection that cooperative and mutually supportive relations among people are a fantasy. The Socialist Party's goal is to make life better - for everyone. Today, in a system designed to produce profits for the few at the expense of the many, brutalises everything. The poor rarely understand that they lack the basics because of the way capitalism works. They think they suffer because other races, different religions and foreign countries deprive them of what is “rightfully” theirs. So they resort to irrational nationalism and hysterical patriotism. All great evils - war, poverty, religious manias, class and caste divisions, sexism are produced by a social machine that runs on exploitation. This terrible Pandora's box poisons human nature just as inevitably as toxic waste pollutes the environment. Mankind is facing threats to its physical survival: traditional massive wars which could become nuclear , chemical, and biological, looming risks of destruction of the environment typified by the greenhouse effect and the destruction of the tropical forests, desertification of large parts of Africa and Asia.

Is it already too late? Is doomsday avoidable? Will humankind be able to survive the coming years? The Socialist Party believes that humankind is not doomed. This is not wishful thinking or pure intuition.Given the proper social technology, we can write our own destinies. Science and technology are presented as forces divorced from the human beings who control them. But this is incorrect. A shared and planned socialist world provides the material pre-conditions that impel us to do this. There exists practical solutions to completely reverse the desertification of Africa; to irrigate the desert in order to make it again into a rich food-producing region like it had once been in the past; to inspire its inhabitants to apply nature-conserving agricultural techniques to switch back from commercial cash-crops to crops which enable them to feed people in a healthy nutritious manner.

The problem to be solved is not a technical one. It is a social one. In order for this solution to be applied, you need a society in which greed, the desire to accumulate personal wealth regardless of social and economic costs do not determine social and economic behaviour. We need power in the hands of social forces which can prevent individuals and classes from imposing their will on society. Power needs to be in the hands of the toilers willing to let solidarity, cooperation and generosity prevail by democratic means over short-sighted egoism and irresponsibility. The rich capitalists, and the powers to be are not stupid. Many of them are perfectly aware of the ecological threat. Some even try to take them into consideration in their economic planning and projection, but under the pressure of competition, they are forced to act in such a way that the overall threat remains.

What socialism is all about is human freedom for the greatest possible number to decide their own fate, the freedom of workers to decide in a democratic way which priorities to apply to production and how to produce and distribute, freed from the rule of market laws, rule by the rich, or rule by the experts, rule by religion, rule by the state or by the party.

The Socialist Party fights in favour of the working class, in favour of socialism, in favour of the physical survival of humankind. Because that’s the real choice today. Socialism or barbarism. That is the Socialist Party objective - human emancipation, and we will fight for it. The Socialist Party's task is basic socialist education and propaganda. Humankind cannot be saved without substituting for this present society a fundamentally different society. It can be called it anything you wish to, the label makes no difference, but its substance have to be specified. We make no predictions about the future. Everything remains open. Our fight is against any system in which human beings are despised, alienated, exploited, oppressed or denied basic human dignity, whatever the pretexts.

We could go on and on. What it comes down to is this, we cannot return to primitive society’s way of life except at the price of a disaster worse than any of the problems that plague the world today. Those who out of some sort of nostalgic “false-memory” syndrome argue that we need to return to a past “golden age” forget that those “primitive” values are the expression of social relations that no longer exist today. The purpose of socialist revolution is not to restore a “natural” order of things. No, the purpose of socialist revolution is instead to provide today’s society with a form of organisation that corresponds to the material possibilities open to us today and that satisfies the cultural and moral values that current conditions and the history of mankind have taught us to consider most appropriate to the well-being of humanity. Contemporary society has the objective material capacities – in the developed societies, at any rate – to put an end to capitalist exploitation and all the forms of oppression that it perpetuates – the oppression of women, racial oppression, the oppression of the different “minorities” in our society such as the old, the handicapped, homosexuals, etc. This is the basic and primary reason for working for socialism.

The history of humanity provides ample proof that mankind can use nature for specific purposes and transform it to a considerable extent to suit their needs. Mankind is now capable of sending a spaceship outside our solar system; we can do so only because we has learned and mastered many of the laws governing gravity, energy, the strength of various metals, computers and communications, etc. In other words, mankind’s freedom to transform nature depends on how well they understand. It is important to learn to understand these laws, because then we can intervene more effectively in the process of social change in the future and, above all, better serve the cause of socialism.

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