Two glimpses of the future
WORKERS, MAY 2008 ISSUE
Our Party has said that capitalism is in absolute decline and that if our class, the working class, does not take steps to replace it with something else, then we will go down with it. Only now are we beginning to glimpse what that might look like.
With oil likely to reach $150 per barrel the consequences look catastrophic. Transportation of all commodities will raise prices across the board. Food prices have soared, driven by increases in fuel prices, the diversion of crops as biofuel, and rising demand.
Food riots have broken out in some countries. More will follow. Petrol seems likely to rise to £1.50 a litre here, and gas and electricity prices have rocketed.
The world banking system is on the verge of collapse. The Bank of England wants all of us as taxpayers to take on the banks' dodgy loans and make borrowing more expensive for us. This, after they have been encouraging ordinary people to create a mountain of debt while our lowest paid have had their income tax increased. Pensions are being almost abolished for the next generation.
Manufacturing has collapsed in Britain and the US now follows, with unemployment rising. Everything must be privatised, whether it is water supply in Africa, or polyclinics here.
Capitalism wants to make money out of everything that moves. And the whole working class is being outsourced by promoting worldwide migration to set worker against worker.
Meanwhile, the US and EU talk of more military intervention, in Iran, Venezuela, Cuba, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Zimbabwe. The people of Iraq and Afghanistan have already suffered this version of the future. We are fed the virtues of "democracy" that brings billionaire demagogue Berlusconi to power. Gordon Brown in his US speech calls on the US to lead the world in reforming the UN to become the saviour of world capitalism in decline.
This is the nightmare world that capitalism is sinking us into. But there are those who thought like us and did something about it. The high price of oil brings wealth into Venezuela to develop new economic structures for its working class, increasing employment, education, literacy, health, living standards and power. It makes deals with poor Caribbean countries to sell oil at around $20 per barrel and makes similar ones with other poor Latin American nations.
Cuba is building free health systems and literacy programmes in 80 countries and Bolivia, Venezuela, Nicaragua and Cuba have set up a bank independent of the crisis-ridden world banking system.
The two glimpses of the future could not be more different.