Is human civilization decent? What claim have we to civilization when excessive poverty and suffering persist alongside the excesses and hyper-luxuries of the over-privileged? What claim to morality do we have when solvable suffering exists? How can we claim any amount of decency when decent society is often dismissed as Utopian?
Humanity, as it stands materialistically, developmentally and technologically, is arguably capable of providing the material well-being for each and every member of the species. As is well illustrated in Murray Bookchin’s concept of “Post-Scarcity”, human civilization possesses the means to deliver life’s necessities, amenities and comforts to every individual. Human production and means of disseminating goods have reached levels perfectly capable of vouchsafing a comfortable and sustained existence to all citizens of earth.
As a species, we retain the productive and technological potential to supply material stability to all the diverse communities around the globe. The “Utopian” world in which all live in material sufficiency is very much an achievable goal, given the advanced degree of evolved human creativity, innovation and cunning.
Yet, this does not occur. Despite incredible abundance and economic success at the highest levels, inequality, poverty, starvation, homelessness, and stagnant income plague every sector of human civilization. As multi-national corporations and financial institutions generate record profits, middle and lower class citizens reap few of the benefits that were supposedly destined to “trickle down”. As bankers, vulture capitalists and stockbrokers thrive, entire segments of our population are plagued by poverty and underemployment.
Industry is booming,
but the benefits generated from this boom are disproportionately stockpiled by the ruling class. America possesses incredible wealth and astonishing abundance, that instead of being distributed to a well-deserving general population, is being hoarded by an elite few who live lives of unforgivable excess, greed, self-interest, wastefulness, sociopathy, and moral vacuity.
Capitalism, in its current incarnation, is a primary culprit behind this misappropriation of human production and creative capability. Capitalism thrives on the disenfranchisement, repression, oppression and misfortune of human communities. It is a system where the motive to maximize profits supersedes all others. It is only through the exploitation of cheap labor and a desperate workforce that capitalism is able to sustain itself. Therefore, it is contrary to the interests of capitalism, as a system, that all humans live equal and comfortable lives.
The very foundation of capitalism demands a class of abused and impoverished people to be exploited. In short, capitalism, in its practical form, is an active and powerful participant in the degradation of the human condition. It stands in the way of equality and economic stability for the general public. It is an establishment that obstructs the very obtainable objective of providing life’s necessities to all. It is an active and powerful impediment to general human progress and prosperity.
There is unending potential suffused in the powers of human innovation and technology, but that potential is more and more being squandered on the greedy interests of a select few. In a kind of despicable perversion of man’s productive power, his entire productive potential is being made to serve profit motives rather than enriching the general prosperity of human existence. All too often, the powers of production and technology are made to serve the very system that oppresses the masses and maintains the status quo of needless economic inequality.
It is time to enact
a collective remuneration that is owed, and long overdue, to all who exist within the human community. The benefits of the entirety of human innovation and development are, at present, absurdly concentrated into the hands of the few. A small ruling class is hoarding prosperity. The substantial fruits of civilization, that should rightfully be shared by all of human-kind, are funneling down to a greedy financial oligarchy.
These few are no more entitled to the comforts of human productivity and creation than any one else. They are merely beneficiaries of a broken and corrupt system. The economic prosperity of the upper classes must be curtailed and redistributed in a collectivist fashion, as no degree of labor or innovation justifies such individual-abundance in the face of such communal poverty. Billionaires should not exist so long as a single person is homeless, hungry, thirsty or vulnerable.
This aspiration of providing the material well-being for all is, of course, not new. It has been reiterated throughout the development of anarchist and collectivist philosophy. From Marx to Kropotkin to Bookchin, to name a few: serious thinkers have posited legitimate and feasible models in which the contemporary resources and productive power of humanity are mobilized to provide for the material well-being of all. After all, the objective of economy and human association should be to maximize general prosperity, not individual profit.
It should be clear that the mal-distribution of material necessities has been significantly realized under the capitalist model, and due to the psychology it has generated in those raised and indoctrinated under its dominion. The misallocation of resources, productive power and general abundance is apparent on both national and international levels. The collective wealth generated in combination with the evolution of human civilization is being squandered on a decadent, degenerate, self-involved, un-elected, ruling class – a class thriving on a depraved and deplorable system.
These multi-millionaires and billionaires
have not earned the wealth that they have accumulated. Instead, they have manipulated an unnatural system that allows a single individual to accumulate more wealth and assets than millions of people combined. How could such disproportionality be justified? How can one defend the fact that one person makes $20,000 a year teaching children, and another makes $20,000 a minute polluting the environment and exploiting child labor markets?
The entire course of human history is a collective development of learning and ingenuity. Each and every one of us, whether a billionaire or proletarian, stands on the shoulders of the creations and developments of those that precede us. We are a part of the collective evolution of humanity as a species. Yet, despite the collective effort, the benefits are not shared collectively. This is unacceptable. There is absolutely no justification for the excessive wealth of a small group that could literally end poverty, given a more proportional system of wealth distribution.
It is time for all who exist as humans to be given the necessities of life; necessities that are easily afforded, if the excessive, immoral and despicable, unearned, hyper-wealth of the financial ruling class is constrained and redirected toward general human interest. This is not only logical but imminently moral.
Capitalism not only endangers human progress, it has become an existential threat to humanity, with its ravenous and unchecked consumption and pollution. The models of infinite growth and linear productivity espoused by capitalism fail to acknowledge the obvious need for a kind of equilibrium with the natural world. In so many words, capitalism is an unsustainable, unrealistic, alienating, dominating, exploitative, dangerous, hierarchical, fantasy, where important issues like economic stability, are irresponsibly, yet, deliberately left to the forces of chance, luck, and competition.
Capitalism is reckless, ideologically and environmentally; it is a contemporary fetish of a culture still subservient to the ideology of domination. Capitalism has not only outlived its utility, it has more and more become a powerful engine of human backwardness, misery, and poverty.