The current stage of the capitalist mode of production is causing, climate change, widespread air, land, fresh and sea water pollution, along with ecological destruction. As a consequence more and more voices are being raised calling for remedial action. These calls are aimed at slowing down the rate of exploitation and degradation of the inorganic and organic material of the world. They rarely contain proposals to end these symptoms completely. It helps to understand that such limited reformist calls to introduce measures to restrict the symptoms, are invariably driven by two sets of motives.

The first group of motives emanate from people who actually enjoy advantages from the existing hierarchical mass society systems. Consequently they do not want to undermine the system which produces and guarantees, those advantages. Nevertheless, they do not want too many disadvantages to accumulate and impede upon their own future lives or the futures of their children. The second set of motives come from people, who may or may not enjoy advantages, but who think that private ownership of the means of production is the cause of social inequality and ecological destruction.

The first set of voices, want the existing legal systems of states to enact and enforce tougher restrictions upon those activities which produce the destructive symptoms noted above. Logically they comprise of a spectrum of Conservative seekers of top-down totalitarian solutions. The second set of voices want the state itself to enact and enforce such restrictions. Logically the latter are a spectrum of socialist seekers of top-down totalitarian solutions. From within a dualitic way of thinking, both these tendencies may wish to consider themselves (or be considered by others) as complete opposites, but that would be a mistake.

This is because both tendencies are united in the wish to continue the hierarchical mass society form of living. They just differ over which pool of political dogmatists they desire the ruling hierarchy to be drawn from. Despite superficial appearances, in the complex dialectics of real life, Capitalism, Imperialism, Fascism and Stalinism, are only opposed to each other politically – not economically or socially. Only those trapped in a dualistic habit of thinking could suppose otherwise. All the above tendencies are reactionary because they all to wish conserve the essential structure of hierarchical mass societies.

It is actually the acceptance of these socio-economic structures as natural which has become  the prime cause of social and ecological conflict and disintegration. If the readers is in doubt about this reasoning,  just compare the economic, financial, social and political actions against life on earth – and ordinary people – of the present ruling elites in as diverse a group of regimes as those in China, Russia, North Korea, Iran, Syria, Saudi Arabia, USA, Canada, UK, France, Germany, Greece etc. The current 21st century office holders of national financial, economic, political and military power are no different in this regard than their predecessors were in the 20th century.

The labels they chose back then were either Fascist; Socialist; Communist; Liberal; Social Democratic or Populist. However, by sensibly avoiding simplistic dualistic distortions, it becomes clear (for those who want to see) that all these labels served to disguise the same old dish of fetid hierarchical mass society top-down corruption, bribery and inhumanity. Consequently, all those groups of reformist hopefuls who campaign for one or other of these political forms to replace any other, are inappropriately clutching at straws.

Political ideas and practices are the distorted and distorting results of fundamental social and economic divisions; they are not the solution to humanities problems. Since the problems that all ‘life on earth’ faces are caused by humanities current mode of production, based upon socio-economic divisions, the solutions require revolutionary socio-economic changes. Consequently, in hierarchical mass society systems, clutching onto political straws is ultimately useless;  the waters are metaphorically, as well as literally, polluted and rising fast.

The class systems of modern hierarchical mass societies are such that a relative small majority of the elite class hold all the institutions of power and influence. They will not introduce any reform which will restrict the income-producing activities of most powerful sections of their own class. Second, there is a sizable middle class who, despite any difficulties they are currently experiencing, do not wish for anything other than to preserve the existing system. Their long and short-term ‘hope’ is to encourage  the elite to soon have enough sense to reign in the worst culprits of pollution and eco-destruction. Other than that for them it is business as usual.

Even though most working class people know the current system represents a dead end, they no longer have any vision or understanding that other modes of production are possible. Currently they have been limited to making the best they can within the existing rapidly deteriorating setup. It has become clear to most of them that the 19th and 20th century idea that democratic systems set up by the elites will, allow a gradual transition to a more humane and ecologically sustainable socio-economic system, is an illusion. Allowing lengthy rational discussion and healthy honest debates was always part of the plan to wear working class activists down whilst shaming or flattering them. In the 21st century, the Parliamentary road to social improvement is now for careerists only.

Furthermore, what is true and what is false in the public domain has long been a matter of manipulated opinion, spun by artful spin-doctors and just lately is assisted by computer-aided artificial intelligence. The Orwellian nightmare of “NewSpeak” is currently everywhere. Citizen “Thought Police” stalk the Internet 24/7 looking for “Thought Crimes” and then hurry to “UNPERSON” any perceived offender. What we see and what we hear in peace as well as war, is being increasingly artificially manipulated or deceitfully ‘forged’.  All this ‘interference’ within public and private communication networks suggests that the whole system will have to fundamentally collapse before enough chaff and clutter is dispersed to allow clarity to emerge.

Perhaps it is only then that humanity will be able to break free of the hierarchical mass society form of living and begin to construct humane and ecologically sustainable socio-economic forms. Certainly, the systems internal and external contradictions, are increasing exponentially and looking ever more likely to explode in social unrest or geological disaster of one kind or another. Meanwhile, as many as possible should oppose and expose the distortions and manipulations designed to sow confusion. In this latter regard, I encourage readers to consider reading the following excelent article ‘Stalin will never be Redeemable’, by Alex Skopic.  For me its  one weakness is to only consider  the personifications involved in the hierarchical mass society structure that was  being created by the Leninists,  Stalinists and Trotsktists – and not the structure itself. The article  is  located at;

My thanks to Randy Gould for drawing my attention to yet another important analysis.

Roy Ratcliffe (April 2023)

This entry was posted in Critique. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.