Quora answer: How do you imagine a post-capitalist world?

Jul 06 2013

I think we are already in a Post-Capitalist world, which I call Corporatist, and I define Corporatist as a combination of Capitalism, Communism and Fascism which has become Monstrous and is literally destroying the world though the program of Globalization. Post-Capitalism is the era of Globalization where the only limits on capitalism is the exploitation of the whole planet on which we live. And that is being done by mega-corporations on a world wide scale. But for us humans how are occupying the territories being globalized it appears as some strange Scylla like monster with three heads which are Capitalism, Communism and Fascism combined in a single Beast. Capitalism won the Ideological wars of the Twentieth Century, but by fighting hot wars with Fascism, and cold wars with Communism we paid a hard price by developing a variant of capitalism that is particularly viral that has features of Communism and Fascism built in. And literally we are trapped between this monsters on the one hand and Charybdis of spiraling out of control doom aimed at Planet Death on the other that is being caused by this monster.

And this is what I don’t like about Zizek. His sophistry really supports this situation rather than pointing toward some possible solution. Zizek says we are in an ideological landscape of warpages of our perceptions and also of cognitive illusions which is true. He says we need a communism that is reduced to just protecting the commons, which sounds reasonable enough, but comes with no concrete proposals. But worse yet does not identify the real source of the problem which I claim is Corporatism. By not focusing in on this result of 100 years of war all over the globe between ideologies but just saying that we are in the midst of ideology when we claim our age is post-ideological is just not enough. Corporatism is like a super-germ that is built by wrong application over and over of anti-biotics. It is out of control as we saw in the Financial crisis and it is being supported by the state with direct welfare, it is parasitic on the national structures and is the new world order we were promised by Bush and others who have sold their souls to the transnational corporations, like the Republicans and corporate henchmen the Lobbyists who actively promote Corporatism. In this respect the Democrats are no better, but they are really just two faces of the same thing, i.e. nihilistic opposites while real power resides in the incumbents of either party.

Post Capitalism, Post Communism and Post Fascism of the Twentieth Century is the Corporatism of the Twenty First century when globalization has really taken hold and is actually starting to happen in a big way. Corporatism gives the illusion of the idea that it is post-ideological because capitalism claims to have won the Ideological wars of the last century. Communism and Fascism by falling into Genocide showed that they are Totalitarian and ultimately Evil. Capitalism and Democracy showed that although imperfect are a much better alternative. But Capitalism and Liberal Democracy did not come out of the Ideological wars unscathed but changed in their essence, and it is this change, this essential mutation into the new corporatism that is the new monstrosity devouring the earth, like we see in many movies such as Battleship for instance. There is something deep down there that has come to life and is destroying everything in its path. Or there is something Alien out there that is set on destroying us. As long as we do not name the source of the problem there is no way to formulate a strategy against it, and Badiou and Zizek are blind to it because they still think Communism is viable as an alternative.

It appeared that Anonymous was a true response to the challenge of Corporatism, and not the Occupy movement. The occupy movement did not declare war on Corporations. But Anonymous did. And they thought of a very interesting strategy appealing to those who are employees of the corporation to reveal their secrets and crimes. The problem with Anonymous is that they thought they could actually be Anonymous on the Internet, which is not really possible. And many groups took up the banner and the movement shattered both inside and by others acting under their banner just wreaking havoc for no reason (LOL). But in the face off between Anonymous and Corporations which I think is real at some level we see the beginnings of what the struggle is going to be like in this century as globalization is more and more successful, and “Chinese Communist” Fascist Capitalism becomes stronger and stronger. The United States and the EuroZone will have to respond by becoming even more Corporatist to compete.

As US dominance of the world stage becomes more and more shaky as the economy eventually becomes even shakier than it is now due to Walmart Dollars and Petrol Dollars undermining our sovereignty there will be fundamental changes in the marriage between Liberal Democracy and Capitalism of the last century to promote Corporatist agenda of Globalization even more. And so the people will be more and more trapped between Corporatist exploitation and the dying planet syndrome produced by that exploitation. Eventually this will be realized to be a struggle to the death for humanity, probably too late.

Zizekian Common-unists singing cum-by-ya and celebrating perverse individual differences together, ala Burning Man, is just not going to be a good response to a runaway phenomenon of global economic reorganization between competing corporations all bent on out exploiting each other at the expense of 20 billion human beings and the deteriorating planet. The battle ground is Africa where everyone is buying up arable land like crazy. I think Blade Runner was very prophetic in its vision of the twenty-first century. But I don’t think either Badiou or Zizek is really facing the actual situation yet due to their nostalgia for communism, and their willingness to return to Totalitarianism.

Something new is needed, and the only thing that seems to be new so far is Anonymous which has to be taken seriously philosophically even though its fundamental premise is flawed, which is it is possible to be anonymous on the internet, and that defacing web-sites is real action. But the exposure of the internal Emails of H B Gary that showed conspiracy was a serious action. The fact that the group responded decisively to a provocation is also a real response. And things like that have to be taken seriously by the Corporations, who are getting hacked everyday for peoples credit card records, but getting hacked to show that they are committing crimes is a different issue completely because that is an attack on their existence at a fundamental level where people can go to prison. I think what is going to happen as Corporatist economic oppression gets worse, where corporations get welfare rather than people, where corporations are considered people with a legitimate political voice via super-PACs, etc. there will be a more concerted effort to attack the corporations not just occupy wallstreet but to destroy it, if it does not destroy itself first.

Corporatism is a highly unstable formation. But it is definitely worse than Totalitarianism in the sense that it is truly Global aggregations of power without moral compass. Totalitarianism was statist, in the sense that it happened within the Axis bloc or the Soviet bloc but not everywhere and there was an alternative which supported freedom against totalitarian slavery. But Corporatism is not linked to states except to the extent that states give it welfare and support it so that economic activity will occur in their territory. Corporatism is truly global, and as such the entire population of earth is its victim either directly by enslavement, or indirectly though the destruction of the environment. And capitalism, communism, and fascism are not alternatives to it, because it actually has internalized all of these within itself and it has produced though its victory over Communism and Fascism what it deems a post-ideological arena of rhetoric.

As Zizek says it is in the process of incorporating Green themes into its PR campaign but that does not change the reality of what is happening to the earth on a daily basis as it is even more ruthlessly exploited. What Heidegger said about Technology becomes realized in Corporatism that uses information technology to coordinate its efforts globally. It is Corporatism that enforces the nihilistic enframing where everything is seen as resources to be pushed into standing reserves so it can be more easily exploited including humans as human resources, as shareholders, as costumers, as employees. If we go back to Lord of the Rings for an analogy it is Corporatism which holds the One Ring to rule them all. To understand this one ring we need to understand better the structure of the Western Worldview that forged this ring which encircles the globe in rings of fiber that allows corporations to be global. Post-Capitalism is pre-“one world government” where the corporations are the citizens of the world, not human beings.

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