Capitalism pursues profit at the expense of more urgent social needs and values. In this, capitalism is grossly inefficient. This pandemic is now bringing that truth home to people. The capitalist economy produces and thrives on inequality. A socialist economy—where society as a whole own and run what, how and where things are produce put social needs and goals (like proper preparation for pandemics) ahead of the profit-motive. Workers are the majority in all capitalist societies; their interests are those of the majority. Employers are always a small minority; theirs are the “special interests” of that minority. Capitalism gives that minority the position, profits and power to determine how the society as a whole lives or dies. A system that throws millions out of work and as in America ends employment-based health insurance when their employment is no longer suitably profitable for the employer class is vicious and absurd.
System change must now be on today’s social agenda. We need to think in a wider framework than exists in the minds of most people today. It’s hard to imagine a silver lining in the current crisis but yet perhaps the positive side of the pandemic, is it might bring people to think about what kind of a world we want. While we face a shared fate, suffering from the coronavirus will not be same for everyone. The capitalist class continue pursuing their self-interests.
Could there be any silver linings in this crisis? The pandemic is an opportunity to go forward in a different way, democratically, as if we were all one, for fundamentally restructuring our society so that we will come together to build peace rather than wage wars. If only we could redirect our attention and see the big picture hiding in plain sight. We cannot serve the needs of humanity and capitalism at one and the same time. Socialism is a highly contagious idea. Once an idea has taken hold it’s almost impossible to eradicate and all things can become possible.