Marx and capitalist globalism


In their attempts to prove that the globalization of capitalism is inevitable, bourgeois theorists depict Marx as a representative of capitalist globalism and thus turn his thought into a positivist theory of capitalism. Quotations from The Communist Manifesto are used to prove that capitalist globalism is inevitable and justified. They insist on Marx’s view of capitalist globalism as a way of overcoming „lower” (traditional) forms of social life that impede the development of the productive forces and human freedom, but they discard Marx’s idea of the future, which is reduced either to a „utopia” (more precisely, utopistic) or to the practice of (former) regimes of „real socialism”. By doing so, they remove from Marx’s thought its revolutionary edge and deprive capitalism of its historicity. According to Marx, the revolutionary role of capitalism is to eliminate, through the development of the productive forces and the creation of a global market, all that prevents a „leap from the realm of necessity to the realm of freedom” (Engels) and, in that context, destroys a mythological relation to nature. Capitalist globalism creates the conditions for the final disappearance of class society and the creation of a world of free people. In that context, capitalist globalisation has a revolutionary character, and, so, the opposition to globalisation is reactionary. A global capitalist expansion should be considered in light of the emancipatory possibilities created by the capitalist development of the productive forces on a global scale. Only with a view toward humankind’s final liberation from existential uncertainty and class exploitation, a view toward the creation of a communist society, can Marx’s conception of capitalist globalism be properly understood.

The weakness of Marx’s vision of a future based on capitalist globalization derives from his notion of the nature of capitalism. By adhering his critique of capitalism to the existential apriorism,  and  the  myth  based  on  it,  that  capitalist  development  of  the productive forces and the global market is „revolutionary” in character, Marx overlooked the fact that capitalism is essentially an ecocidal order and that the development of capitalism as a global order will be guided by the genocidal practices of the most advanced capitalist countries. Even in Marx’s time, it was clear that the annihilation of entire nations and the transformation of their living environments into spaces for ruthless capitalist exploitation were essential prerequisites for the development and expansion of capitalism. Since he was aware that capitalism’s excessive exploitation ruins the soil, Marx could have anticipated that capitalists from the most advanced capitalist countries, even before they had completely exhausted their own soil, would start to conquer „fresh living space“ across the globe. Capitalism’s ecocidal relation to nature inevitably leads to a genocidal relation among  the most  powerful  capitalist   countries  and   the   „primitive“   nations   and   the „superfluous” members of the working class in the developed capitalist countries. These workers   are   the  „collateral   damage“   of   progress   based   on   the   capitalist   mode   of development of the productive forces.

If  Marx  had  not  based  his  view  of  capitalist  globalism  on  the  myth  of the „revolutionary” character of capitalism, the plight of Native Americans should have alerted him to the tendency inherent in capitalist development, the tendency toward the ecocidal and then genocidal nature of the capitalist development of the productive forces. Due to ecocidal  capitalist  globalism,  the  genocide  principle,  that  the  destruction  of  an growing number of people is essential for the survival of fewer and fewer people, has become the strategic guideline for the economic, political and military practices of the most powerful capitalist countries. In that context, the theory of „global overpopulation” lends legitimacy to the annihilation of billions of „superfluous” people so that the most powerful capitalist corporations can take raw materials and energy resources from across the globe. The theory of the „golden billion”, the founding notion of contemporary imperialist strategy in the West, clearly indicates the ecocidal‐genocidal character of capitalist globalism. At the same time, capitalist centers of power in the West are using the ecological demise of the planet, brought on by their ecocidal practices, to seize territories that are not under their immediate control and to establish an ecocidal‐genocidal colonial domination over entire continents. Here again, it is about the totalizing effect of capitalism’s existential rationale – capitalists use prophecies of global destruction to justify their self‐serving actions toward fulfilling them.

The title of one of Lenin’s most important writings, Imperialism, the Highest Stage of Capitalism, which became a manifesto for 20th century anti‐colonial struggle, indicates the nature of capitalist globalism. Global capitalist imperialism needs global imperial, political, legal, athletic and other institutions. „International organizations” are the political manifestations   of   the   domination   of   capitalist   monopolies   over   humanity.   We   are witnessing the creation of a global political order that corresponds to the global economic order based on the guiding axioms of monopolistic capitalism: „Big fish devour small fish!” and „Destroy the competition!” It is a „mondialism” that involves the destruction of nations and  the  transformation   of   citizens   into   working‐consuming   hordes,   as   well  as   the conversion of their living and historical spaces into the objects of economic exploitation and ecological devastation. The biggest capitalist corporations are destroying national states in order to eliminate forces capable of restricting their power. In that context, they are introducing the concept of „regionalization” in an attempt to break up the existing states and create capitalist protectorates that will not be capable of opposing the totalitarian domination of  the  most  powerful  capitalist  groups.  The  „regionalization”  amounts  to a „feudalization” of the existing states. Instead of allowing the citizens to have a say in their politics,  the  „development  of  democracy”  has  the  opposite  effect:  through  economic, political, scientific, technical, media, pharmaceutical, military and other means, fewer and fewer capitalists have more and more opportunities to establish an unchallenged power over the people ‐ who are reduced to the abstract status of „citizens of the world” ‐ and to become the masters of life and death. People are left with one resort: a futile struggle, at regional and local levels, to ameliorate the consequences of the criminal practices of the most powerful capitalist corporations. In view of this „regionalization”, the fatal effects of attempts at disintegrating the existing states become obvious. In order to prevent humanity from uniting its efforts for the preservation of global life, the most powerful capitalist concerns are creating separatist hot‐spots and thus provoking conflicts between nations, races and religious groups, which further weaken the global anti‐capitalist front and humanity’s struggle for survival. Here it should be added that, in addition to capitalist corporations, a capitalistically conditioned life‐style has also become a totalizing power that destroys national cultures and specificities, turning entire nations into an idiotized working‐ consuming „masses” and the world itself into a capitalist concentration camp. Even those people  who are  not under  immediate  control  by  the  West,  but  who  have  accepted  the „consumer” way of life, are losing their cultural identity and are being absorbed into the „Coca‐Cola culture”, the most authentic manifestation of globalist idiotism.

Considering the fact that capitalist globalism is based on ecocidal terror by the most powerful capitalist corporations, leading to the destruction of life on the planet and the elimination of „superfluous” populations, the fatal consequences of Antonio Negri’s claim that we can reach the future only by following capitalist globalism are transparently clear. Actually, to oppose capitalist globalism is the most important libertarian and existential obligation not only for Asian, African, South American and Central American nations, but also for workers in the most developed capitalist countries. Nature and humanity can be preserved and the emancipatory legacy of national cultures and bourgeois society can be realized only through the fight against capitalism. From a humanist and existentialist point of view, people’s awareness that humanity must unite in the fight against capitalism is potentially the most fruitful consequence of capitalist globalism.

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