We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore LappĂ©, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

The Resistance and Its Double

Click here to access article by C J Hopkins from CounterPunch. (My commentary edited for clarity at 4:22 PM Seattle time.)

Since WWII the US backed by a NATO army has reigned mostly supreme. In 1990 the Empire's arch-nemesis, the Soviet Union, collapsed largely because of its own self-serving bureaucratic weight. The imperial masters of this new Empire were ecstatic: Bush Sr. declared that this was a beginning of a New World Order, Empire ideologists like Francis Fukuyama argued that capitalist America had demonstrated the attainment of the highest form of civilization, while Samuel Huntington saw only the Muslim nations standing in the way of the US-led capitalist Empire to rule supreme over the world. To understand this astonishing result and our present confusing situation today, we must review briefly our history since WWII.

Immediately after the war the ruling capitalist class went on the attack against organized labor (see this and this) and engaged in a purge of radicals during the McCarthy period. Along with the rollback of labor reforms and the purge of leftists, the ruling class's ideological engines completely saturated the minds of the American people with dumbed-down messages of a benevolent country trying to save the world from the evil empire of the Soviet Union and the splendid virtues of capitalism. Given the US's dominant economic position for nearly three decades following the war, the US capitalist ruling class was able to provide fairly generous material inducements to the middle and lower classes in order to head off resistance to these attacks on labor and the left.

As a result of this history, in recent decades the American public has simply reacted viscerally to the manufactured War on Drugs and War on Terror and encouraged to devote their time and energies to social identity causes and multiculturalism. The end result is what we see today: the class struggle, which became dramatic during the Great Depression of the 1930s, has completely disappeared along with any revolutionary understanding of the class war that is intrinsically embedded in capitalism.

C. J. Hopkins explains how the apparent split between the ideological engines of neoliberalists and neo-nationalists are effectively managing the minds of most Americans today in the absence of any revolutionary politics. 
...the quandary folks on the [existing] Left are currently facing is twofold: (1) how to oppose the Trumpians, and other neo-nationalist insurgencies, without serving the interests of Neoliberalism; and (2) how to oppose Neoliberalism without serving the interests of the Neo-nationalists. Which is more or less a classic Zen koan designed to make one’s head explode.

Both the neoliberals and the neo-nationalists know this, and will be using it to pressure us into joining their camps.
And he doesn't see the conflict ending well. 

And, it won't until there is an independent revolutionary left that stops simply reacting to either of these capitalist factions and promote their own organizations, strategies and tactics to eliminate the rule of this tiny class that is hell-bent on war and environmental destruction.

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