Message from WSF 2011
“Neoliberal” globalization, thoroughly bankrupt, is now indeed on the defensive. It has no legitimacy. And people in revolt illustrate that. In Latin America and Nepal, today in Egypt and Tunisia, and tomorrow elsewhere in the South, gigantic popular upsurges are felling regimes that were once at its service.
Autocratic regimes are often extremely violent in their policies and practices and are corrupt to the bone, sold to local middlemen called the “business world”! In Europe the social crisis produced by capitalism is deepening by the day. Vulnerable countries in the euro zone are questioning the whole construction of “Atlantic Europe.”
But nowhere has the battle yet been won. Monopoly capitalism and its political servants are regrouping, ready to organize their retaliation. Their plan is to stifle coldly the democratic potential and revolutionary advances of people by mobilizing all the economic and financial means still available to them. They will not hesitate to revive their alliance with obscurantist forces who claim to “offer solutions.” These neo-fascists in Europe and the United States, in the Muslim world and elsewhere, are not yet unmasked for what they are.
The huge popular movements in action are still to a great extent on the terrain of rejection, without necessarily having consistent positive alternative projects commensurate to the scale of the challenges that confront them.
The huge wave of attempted “depoliticisation” which was carried out by the mainstream media, the collapse of the credibility of the responses that took centre stage in the last century, the erosion — and sometimes failure — of political forces that were once “avant garde” have had devastating effects. Nevertheless, people on the move continue to invent new ways of re-politicization, though not yet on a scale and to a degree sufficient to put monopoly capital and the imperialist states on the run.
We say that it is now more than ever necessary to understand what is being questioned: it is not “neo-liberal capitalism with inhuman face,” but capitalism itself. Capitalism has become an outdated system which has had its day, and it cannot be other than what it is: destroyer of human being, reducing humans to a disposable commodity, destroyer of natural bases of reproduction of life on the planet, destroyer of the autonomy of nations. What must be understood is that there is no acceptable exit from the crisis of capitalism that can restore what is essential. It is urgent to develop strategic visions of struggle with an eye to the invention of socialism of the future, developing proposals to advance, step by step, in that direction.
There is no alternative other than socialism.
Samir Amin is an Egyptian economist. See, also, Samir Amin, “Tunisia: West Could Scupper Genuine Democracy with ‘Islamic Alternative'” (Pambazuka News, 27 January 2011); Samir Amin, “Movements in Egypt: The US Realigns” (MRZine, 3 February 2011); and Samir Amin, “The Trajectory of Historical Capitalism and Marxism’s Tricontinental Vocation” (Monthly Review, February 2011).