“The basic law of capitalism is you or I, not you and I.” Karl Liebknecht
Capitalism is a rapacious and parasitic system which compels working-people to spend most of their waking hours renting out their commodified and exploited labour power or else go without the money income required to purchase basic life necessities distributed in commodity form. Capitalism is an anarchic and competitive system that absurdly complicates production and distribution. Despite capitalism’s rather marvellous media public relations apparatus, negative perceptions of it has never ever been extinguished. You don’t require a PhD in economics to know that life sucks under capitalism. “Compassionate” pretends to be kind to workers, communities and the environment. At the same time, its predatory nature continues to make sure that the rich are getting richer. Capitalism will always be about profits at all cost. Despite the rhetoric of promises, conscience and ethical commitments, capitalism will only reform if it does not threaten its ability to accumulate money. Their clever PR presents a public image that it makes it look like changes are happening, when in fact, almost nothing is being done, apart from creative accounting.
The pandemic has caused immeasurable hardships across the globe. It has radically exacerbated inequalities. When the coronavirus pandemic began to spread, those who feared the Apocalypse, all the so-called preppers and survivalists in their bunkers found themselves mistaken. Instead of the dog-eat-dog breakdown of civilisation, the pandemic resulted in a return to community and people once again became good neighbours, helping one another out, shopping for the frail and elderly, sharing what little they had toilet paper. Mutual aid and cooperation prevailed. Quarantines and social distancing didn’t develop into individualism but brought people together, revealed their commonalities, not their differences. The wild forest-fires and hurricanes, the floods and droughts arising from the climate crisis has made us realise that we are all one people in one world. Isolationism has been exposed as no response to global catastrophes. We now understand more than ever our obligations to one another regardless of nationality or colour. We need not be wide-eyed utopians but accept as hard-nosed realists the importance of our enlightened self-interest and mutual solidarity.