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 Lappé, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up

Monday, July 28, 2014

Is the New BRICS Bank a Challenge to US Global Financial Power?

Click here if you wish to access the transcript of the discussion of this theme by liberal Michael Hudson and Marxist Leo Panitch monitored by Real News interviewer Paul Jay.

It seems to me that this discussion suggests the main difference between their two orientations: Hudson sees the BRIC attempts at independence from Anglo-American hegemony as dramatic and good for what they often see as a "multi-polar" world, while Panitch sees this development as only a new capitalist gang trying to assert more of their own capitalist interests within a world dominated by the US-led Empire gang. 

Many other liberals are also seeing the development of BRIC power and a multi-polar world as a solution to the present world crises, but Panitch correctly sees BRIC power as only serving another capitalist gang that wants basically the same thing as Empire ruling classes: exploitation of people and resources to promote their wealth and power. We have already seen the devastating results of inter-capitalist class competition in the last century. Surely, no one wants a repeat of that!!!

I've just listened to another interview given by Paul Jay with Patrick Bond of South Africa in which this distinction is made much clearer.

It's going to take a world-wide, organized opposition by the 99 Percent who must stop this capitalist train from driving all of us over the cliffs of climate destabilization, wars, and famine.