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Commentary: Civil & Human Rights


When Democracy Failed: The warnings of history
by imc for Thom Hartmann
(No verified email address)

Address: Fourth Reich

Current rating: 76
18 Mar 2003

What goes around, comes around. Read it and weep:

The 70th anniversary wasn't noticed in the United States + was barely reported in the corporate media. But the Germans remembered well that fateful day seventy years ago - February 27, 1933. They commemorated the anniversary by joining in demonstrations for peace that mobilized citizens all across the world.

It started when the government, in the midst of a worldwide economic crisis, received reports of an imminent terrorist attack. A foreign ideologue had launched feeble attacks on a few famous buildings, but the media largely ignored his relatively small efforts. The intelligence services knew, however, that the odds were he would eventually succeed. (Historians are still arguing whether or not rogue elements in the intelligence service helped the terrorist; the most recent research implies they did not.)

But the warnings of investigators were ignored at the highest levels, in part because the government was distracted; the man who claimed to be the nation's leader had not been elected by a majority vote and the majority of citizens claimed he had no right to the powers he coveted. He was a simpleton, some said, a cartoon character of a man who saw things in black-and-white terms and didn't have the intellect to understand the subtleties of running a nation in a complex and internationalist world. His coarse use of language - reflecting his political roots in a southernmost state - and his simplistic and often-inflammatory nationalistic rhetoric offended the aristocrats, foreign leaders + the well-educated elite in the government and media. And, as a young man, he'd joined a secret society with an occult-sounding name and bizarre initiation rituals that involved skulls and human bones.

Nonetheless, he knew the terrorist was going to strike (although he didn't know where or when) + he had already considered his response. When an aide brought him word that the nation's most prestigious building was ablaze, he verified it was the terrorist who had struck and then rushed to the scene and called a press conference.

"You are now witnessing the beginning of a great epoch in history," he proclaimed, standing in front of the burned-out building, surrounded by national media. "This fire," he said, his voice trembling with emotion, "is the beginning." He used the occasion - "a sign from God," he called it - to declare an all-out war on terrorism and its ideological sponsors, a people, he said, who traced their origins to the Middle East and found motivation for their evil deeds in their religion.

Two weeks later, the first detention center for terrorists was built in Oranianberg to hold the first suspected allies of the infamous terrorist. In a national outburst of patriotism, the leader's flag was everywhere, even printed large in newspapers suitable for window display.

Within four weeks of the terrorist attack, the nation's now-popular leader had pushed through legislation - in the name of combating terrorism and fighting the philosophy he said spawned it - that suspended constitutional guarantees of free speech, privacy + habeas corpus. Police could now intercept mail and wiretap phones; suspected terrorists could be imprisoned without specific charges and without access to their lawyers; police could sneak into people's homes without warrants if the cases involved terrorism.

To get his patriotic "Decree on the Protection of People and State" passed over the objections of concerned legislators and civil libertarians, he agreed to put a 4-year sunset provision on it: if the national emergency provoked by the terrorist attack was over by then, the freedoms and rights would be returned to the people + the police agencies would be re-restrained. Legislators would later say they hadn't had time to read the bill before voting on it.

Immediately after passage of the anti-terrorism act, his federal police agencies stepped up their program of arresting suspicious persons and holding them without access to lawyers or courts. In the first year only a few hundred were interred, and those who objected were largely ignored by the mainstream press, which was afraid to offend and thus lose access to a leader with such high popularity ratings. Citizens who protested the leader in public - and there were many - quickly found themselves confronting the newly empowered police's batons, gas + jail cells, or fenced off in protest zones safely out of earshot of the leader's public speeches. (In the meantime, he was taking almost daily lessons in public speaking, learning to control his tonality, gestures + facial expressions. He became a very competent orator.)

Within the first months after that terrorist attack, at the suggestion of a political advisor, he brought a formerly obscure word into common usage. He wanted to stir a "racial pride" among his countrymen, so, instead of referring to the nation by its name, he began to refer to it as "The Homeland," a phrase publicly promoted in the introduction to a 1934 speech recorded in Leni Riefenstahl's famous propaganda movie "Triumph Of The Will." As hoped, people's hearts swelled with pride + the beginning of an us-versus-them mentality was sewn. Our land was "the" homeland, citizens thought: all others were simply foreign lands. We are the "true people," he suggested, the only ones worthy of our nation's concern; if bombs fall on others, or human rights are violated in other nations and it makes our lives better, it's of little concern to us.

Playing on this new nationalism + exploiting a disagreement with the French over his increasing militarism, he argued that any international body that didn't act first and foremost in the best interest of his own nation was neither relevant nor useful. He thus withdrew his country from the League Of Nations in October, 1933 + then negotiated a separate naval armaments agreement with Anthony Eden of The United Kingdom to create a worldwide military ruling elite.

His propaganda minister orchestrated a campaign to ensure the people that he was a deeply religious man and that his motivations were rooted in Christianity. He even proclaimed the need for a revival of the Christian faith across his nation, what he called a "New Christianity." Every man in his rapidly growing army wore a belt buckle that declared "Gott Mit Uns" - God Is With Us - and most of them fervently believed it was true.

Within a year of the terrorist attack, the nation's leader determined that the various local police and federal agencies around the nation were lacking the clear communication and overall coordinatedadministration necessary to deal with the terrorist threat facing the nation, particularly those citizens who were of Middle Eastern ancestry and thus probably terrorist and communist sympathizers + various troublesome "intellectuals" and "liberals." He proposed a single new national agency to protect the security of the homeland, consolidating the actions of dozens of previously independent police, border + investigative agencies under a single leader.

He appointed one of his most trusted associates to be leader of this new agency, the Central Security Office for the homeland + gave it a role in the government equal to the other major departments.

His assistant who dealt with the press noted that, since the terrorist attack, "Radio and press are at out disposal." Those voices questioning the legitimacy of their nation's leader, or raising questions about his checkered past, had by now faded from the public's recollection as his central security office began advertising a program encouraging people to phone in tips about suspicious neighbors. This program was so successful that the names of some of the people "denounced" were soon being broadcast on radio stations. Those denounced often included opposition politicians and celebrities who dared speak out - a favorite target of his regime and the media he now controlled through intimidation and ownership by corporate allies.

To consolidate his power, he concluded that government alone wasn't enough. He reached out to industry and forged an alliance, bringing former executives of the nation's largest corporations into high government positions. A flood of government money poured into corporate coffers to fight the war against the Middle Eastern ancestry terrorists lurking within the homeland + to prepare for wars overseas. He encouraged large corporations friendly to him to acquire media outlets and other industrial concerns across the nation, particularly those previously owned by suspicious people of Middle Eastern ancestry. He built powerful alliances with industry; one corporate ally got the lucrative contract worth millions to build the first large-scale detention center for enemies of the state. Soon more would follow. Industry flourished.

But after an interval of peace following the terrorist attack, voices of dissent again arose within and without the government. Students had started an active program opposing him (later known as the White Rose Society) + leaders of nearby nations were speaking out against his bellicose rhetoric. He needed a diversion, something to direct people away from the corporate cronyism being exposed in his own government, questions of his possibly illegitimate rise to power + the oft-voiced concerns of civil libertarians about the people being held in detention without due process or access to attorneys or family.

With his number two man - a master at manipulating the media - he began a campaign to convince the people of the nation that a small,limited war was necessary. Another nation was harboring many of the suspicious Middle Eastern people + even though its connection with the terrorist who had set afire the nation's most important building was tenuous at best, it held resources their nation badly needed if they were to have room to live and maintain their prosperity. He called a press conference and publicly delivered an ultimatum to the leader of the other nation, provoking an international uproar. He claimed the right to strike preemptively in self-defense + nations across Europe - at first - denounced him for it, pointing out that it was a doctrine only claimed in the past by nations seeking worldwide empire, like Caesar's Rome or Alexander's Greece.

It took a few months + intense international debate and lobbying with European nations, but, after he personally met with the leader of the United Kingdom, finally a deal was struck. After the military action began, Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain told the nervous British people that giving in to this leader's new first-strike doctrine would bring "peace for our time."

Thus Hitler annexed Austria in a lightning move, riding a wave of popular support as leaders so often do in times of war. The Austrian government was unseated and replaced by a new leadership friendly to Germany + German corporations began to take over Austrian resources.

In a speech responding to critics of the invasion, Hitler said, "Certain foreign newspapers have said that we fell on Austria with brutal methods. I can only say; even in death they cannot stop lying. I have in the course of my political struggle won much love from my people, but when I crossed the former frontier [into Austria] there met me such a stream of love as I have never experienced. Not as tyrants have we come, but as liberators."

To deal with those who dissented from his policies, at the advice of his politically savvy advisors, he and his handmaidens in the press began a campaign to equate him and his policies with patriotism and the nation itself. National unity was essential, they said, to ensure that the terrorists or their sponsors didn't think they'd succeeded in splitting the nation or weakening its will. In times of war, they said, there could be only "one people, one nation + one commander-in-chief" ("Ein Volk, ein Reich, ein Fuhrer") + so his advocates in the media began a nationwide campaign charging that critics of his policies were attacking the nation itself. Those questioning him were labeled "anti-German" or "not good Germans," and it was suggested they were aiding the enemies of the state by failing in the patriotic necessity of supporting the nation's valiant men in uniform. It was one of his most effective ways to stifle dissent and pit wage-earning people (from whom most of the army came) against the "intellectuals and liberals" who were critical of his policies.

Nonetheless, once the "small war" annexation of Austria was successfully and quickly completed + peace returned, voices of opposition were again raised in the Homeland. The almost-daily release of news bulletins about the dangers of terrorist communist cells wasn't
enough to rouse the populace and totally suppress dissent. A full-out war was necessary to divert public attention from the growing rumbles within the country about disappearing dissidents; violence against liberals, Jews + union leaders; and the epidemic of crony capitalism that was producing empires of wealth in the corporate sector but threatening the middle class's way of life.

A year later, to the week, Hitler invaded Czechoslovakia; the nation was now fully at war + all internal dissent was suppressed in the name of national security. It was the end of Germany's first experiment with democracy.

As we conclude this review of history, there are a few milestones worth remembering.

February 27, 2003, was the 70th anniversary of Dutch terrorist Marinus van der Lubbe's successful firebombing of the German Parliament (Reichstag) building, the terrorist act that catapulted Hitler to legitimacy and reshaped the German constitution. By the time of his successful and brief action to seize Austria, in which almost no German blood was shed, Hitler was the most beloved and popular leader in the history of his nation. Hailed around the world, he was later Time magazine's "Man Of The Year."

Most Americans remember his office for the security of the homeland, known as the Reichssicherheitshauptamt and its SchutzStaffel, simply by its most famous agency's initials: the SS.

We also remember that the Germans developed a new form of highly violent warfare they named "lightning war" or blitzkrieg, which, while generating devastating civilian losses, also produced a highly desirable "shock and awe" among the nation's leadership according to the authors of the 1996 book "Shock And Awe" published by the National Defense University Press.

Reflecting on that time, The American Heritage Dictionary(Houghton Mifflin Company, 1983) left us this definition of the form of government the German democracy had become through Hitler's close alliance with the largest German corporations and his policy of using war as a tool to keep power: fas-cism (fbsh'iz'em) n. A system of government that exercises a dictatorship of the extreme right, typically through the merging of state and business leadership, together with belligerent nationalism."

Today, as we face financial and political crises, it's useful to remember that the ravages of the Great Depression hit Germany and the United States alike. Through the 1930s, however, Hitler and Roosevelt chose very different courses to bring their nations back to power and prosperity.

Germany's response was to use government to empower corporations and reward the society's richest individuals, privatize much of the commons, stifle dissent, strip people of constitutional rights + create an illusion of prosperity through continual and ever-expanding war. America passed minimum wage laws to raise the middle class, enforced anti-trust laws to diminish the power of corporations, increased taxes on corporations and the wealthiest individuals, created Social Security + became the employer of last resort through programs to build national infrastructure, promote the arts + replant forests.

To the extent that our Constitution is still intact, the choice is again ours.

===

Thom Hartmann lived and worked in Germany during the 1980s + is the author of over a dozen books, including "Unequal Protection" and "The Last Hours of Ancient Sunlight." This article is copyright by Thom Hartmann,but permission is granted for reprint in print, email, blog, or web media so long as this credit is attached.

https://www.thomhartmann.com/

Comments

Re: When Democracy Failed: The warnings of history
by Dave Voutila
Email: voutilad (at) ece.wpi.edu (verified)

Current rating: 3
19 Mar 2003

Great read. Only problem is that I don't know all the details of that time period. Anybody know any sources that this could be used to verify all of this article? (Without pointing me to the authors books.)

"sources"
by Mojo
(No verified email address)

Current rating: 0
19 Mar 2003

Try your nearest library.

Re: When Democracy Failed: The warnings of history
by Cliff
(No verified email address)

Current rating: 3
19 Mar 2003

This is some scary shit. The author is right, and the scariest part about it all is that we're letting it happen.

Re: When Democracy Failed: The warnings of history
by David
(No verified email address)

Current rating: -2
19 Mar 2003

I am scared shitless. Bush is the new Hitler!

Re: When Democracy Failed: The warnings of history
by a
(No verified email address)

Current rating: 7
19 Mar 2003

First of all: YO! this orange Times font on black is unreadable.. serious.. I work all day & night in front of computer .. and while this is good looking, i myself, literally can't read it without problems focusing..

Anyhow.. after struggling to read it.. I got through the first paragraph and while I appreciate the literary excercise..

Things are different..

Hitler harnessed power in a specific way. His presidency (for which he was elected) was, in fact, without all kinds of powers that the US president has. That is a fact. This Presidency and the US Presidency were very different. One power that the German Presidency had, was the power to call martial law. So, the nazis bombed the Reichstag and he declared martial law and the democracy game was over.

It is neat to draw parrallels like you are, but the literary style of in-days-of-old, written in such a way to suggest an uncanny similarity is misleading..

If how they came to power is painted this way, then I wonder how much the rest of the painting isn't rich with adventurous stylin'


Not that Bush isn't a fascist.


He is. but things are different. Truth is important. It has to do with how we trust each other. Don't want a revolution based on illusions and ideology over real thought. Fun to mystify, but confuses things.. Not much different then what mainstream media engages in -- just the opposite end of the spectrum...

-- a

Re: When Democracy Failed: The warnings of history
by Greg Richard
Email: grichard (at) fiscalrealities.com (unverified!)

Current rating: 0
19 Mar 2003

Hmmm, "simplistic, inflammatory rhetoric". I suggest anyone who's really interested read the actual text of Time Magazine "hailing" Hitler as Man of the Year in 1938. https://www.time.com/time/special/moy/1938.html. There are some interesting parallels all right, just a little different. "gangsterism" "covertly aiding revolutionary movements" "invading neighbors", rearming in violation of Treaty, killing political enemies, showing appeasement to be a policy that made larger war inevitable. and of course the author's observations about Hitler and corporations don't seem to jive with what was being said at the time. I'm not a big fan of Dubya's economic policy but I'm pretty sure no one's ever accused him of what Time says about Hitler's. Just the opposite actually.

Re: When Democracy Failed: The warnings of history
by Sarah Steinson
Email: ssteinson (at) luis.com (unverified!)

Current rating: 3
19 Mar 2003

The idea that those who don't study hitory are doomed to repeat it is an ignorant idea. I hope this writer realizes that. Also, he's playing off the idea so many of us have burned in our heads that hitler/nazis=BAD (not that i'm arguing that idea). This writer is trying to use our emotions and stir up all the revulsion we have for the nazi regime and redirect some of that rancor toward the Bush administration. The things that made Hitler's rule so repulsive were not his use of catchy phrases during his speaches, or his abiliity to stir up patrtiotism and support, or even his military actions + this writer knows it. Regardless of the similarites he's drawn, it does no, nor will it ever equate our situation with that of the nazis. If this writer wishes to make a point regarding about President Bush or his administration, I suggest he stop hidding behind the horrors of Nazi Germany and just make them. He's doing exactly what he points a finger at Hitler for doing, stirring up support via the manipulation of emotions. From him though, it's not rallying, it's just disgusting.

Re: When Democracy Failed: The warnings of history
by becky g
Email: itssmebeckyg (at) yahoo.com (unverified!)

Current rating: -2
19 Mar 2003

the pretense of our leading a military coalition through iraq is based solely on its natural resources---oil, and lots of it. that, too, was the only reason for our bombing afghanistan--to get in and establish military installations to make way for the caspian oil line...which will go directly across afghanistan. this is a dirty political was fueled by greed, and the love of all that oil... don't forget how the bushes made their millions---it was. in fact, OIL. bush is not being truthful or straightforward about his motives for this war.. if his lips are moving, he is lying. i will not let his pious demeanor trick me into believing his motives are pure of heart...they aren't. just look into his beady little eyes--they, too, tell a story.

Re: When Democracy Failed: The warnings of history
by becky g
Email: itsmebeckyg (at) yahoo.com (unverified!)

Current rating: 0
19 Mar 2003

there was a type error in my e-mail address. itsmebeckyg (at) yahoo.com is the correct address. i apologize for the error.

becky g.

Re: When Democracy Failed: The warnings of history
by -R-
(No verified email address)

Current rating: 0
20 Mar 2003

It's fun to use a history lesson to attack a leader you dislike. Fun, but very foolish. Hitler is the cliche of the times, if you don't like the leader of the country, call them Hitler. It affects those with small minds and the pseudo-intellectuals. Now, I'm hoping you aren't either one of these types. Perhaps you're a conspiracy theorist who thinks Bush and Ashcroft are trying to take complete control of the government? If that is so, then you could also enlighten us about how JFK was shot by aliens.

I agree our rights are being eroded in very scary ways. The Patriot Act along with other laws going through Congress are a scary thought. However, you don't fight back by calling someone Hitler or Hitler-like. Try informing people in a way that they can understand, like how their own freedoms are being thrown away. Give money to the ACLU or the EFF. Think for yourself for a change instead of following some anti-war/anti-Bush bandwagon. Think for yourself, it feels good.

-R-

Re: When Democracy Failed: The warnings of history
by -R-
(No verified email address)

Current rating: 3
20 Mar 2003

It's fun to use a history lesson to attack a leader you dislike. Fun, but very foolish. Hitler is the cliche of the times, if you don't like the leader of the country, call them Hitler. It affects those with small minds and the pseudo-intellectuals. Now, I'm hoping you aren't either one of these types. Perhaps you're a conspiracy theorist who thinks Bush and Ashcroft are trying to take complete control of the government? If that is so, then you could also enlighten us about how JFK was shot by aliens.

I agree our rights are being eroded in very scary ways. The Patriot Act along with other laws going through Congress are a scary thought. However, you don't fight back by calling someone Hitler or Hitler-like. Try informing people in a way that they can understand, like how their own freedoms are being thrown away. Give money to the ACLU or the EFF. Think for yourself for a change instead of following some anti-war/anti-Bush bandwagon. Think for yourself, it feels good.

-R-

Re: When Democracy Failed: The warnings of history
by Lucas Walker
Email: I_AM_AWOL (at) hotmail.com (unverified!)

Current rating: 3
20 Mar 2003

I agree with a previous comment that many leaders in the past have been called "Hitlers" to destroy their credibility and instill hatred of them. Bush does actually have many similarities in common with Hitler though. The only difference is that Bush does not appear to be insane, just thick headed. Iraq is our checkoslovakia it appears...the thorn in our side that has mocked us for ages. This has become somewhat of a rant, but I just wanted to get across the point that I think (along with Europe) that Bush is the most Hitleristic leader the world has seen since the fall of that regime. If I was more informed about the details of the Napoleanic war I might compare Bush to Napoleon instead, but it is late and I haven't time for that. Attempting to use ingrained hatred to support or tear down the war is unjust, but I guess if both sides do it, all will equal out in the end...

Re: When Democracy Failed: The warnings of history
by tommy hughes
Email: silentthunder777 (at) aol.com (unverified!)

Current rating: 0
20 Mar 2003

how true is that...beautiful stuff man. i hadn't ever heard about this coincidence, so i just want to say great job.

Re: When Democracy Failed: The warnings of history
by Casey
Email: c_raybon (at) yahoo.com (unverified!)

Current rating: 0
20 Mar 2003

I like it

I Think They Missed The Point
by Jake Delano
Email: delfre (at) c4.net (unverified!)

Current rating: 8
20 Mar 2003

In the above comments others have stated that it is disgusting and simplistic to draw comparisons between Hitler and Bush + that beliveng those who do not understand history are doomed to repeat is somehow ignorant.I think they missed the point. I'm pretty sure the author of the artical had no intentions of stirring up anti-Bush hatred or ignite revolution opposing war.(A contradiction in itself) Rather, I belive the author meant to portray the ease with which a corrupt government may radicalize and control its populace in the event of a tragic disaster in which the people feel less secure. Sadly, we continue to ignore the cycle of fear-anger-hatred-violence that will perpetuate unless we oppose it in all guises. May peace yet prevail

p.s. the only ones who can rightfully call this place "Homeland" are the true native peoples of the americas

Re: When Democracy Failed: The warnings of history
by William J. Anderson
Email: jakeanderson40 (at) hotmail.com (unverified!)

Current rating: -1
20 Mar 2003

I'm so horrified right now i feel like crying. It's 2:30 in the morning, I'm drunk + I've just been wathcing the football game that is NBC's coverage of Operation: Iraqi Freedom, and I literally feel like I'm participating in a historical atrocity. Revolution of some sort is something I'm contemplating. Something must be done.

Re: When Democracy Failed: The warnings of history
by matt
Email: skywalk32 (at) yahoo.com (verified)

Current rating: 0
20 Mar 2003

i read that text from time.com. i found it very interesting that all of it was written after 1938 and they had no actual lines from the original article. i would like to see what it actually said. i bet that they changed it to look like they weren't praising him at the time.

Re: When Democracy Failed: The warnings of history
by Colin Reid
Email: aa786 (at) gpfn.sk.ca (unverified!)

Current rating: 3
20 Mar 2003

People here are missing the point of the article a bit, which is not to paint Bush as Hitler, but to draw parallels in the courses of events -- essentially saying, "look what happened in Germany, look what's happening now; if the current course is allowed to be followed in America, here's what could happen." Human rights are already disappearing, in the name of "national security". How far will it go?

Re: When Democracy Failed: The warnings of history
by Kevin Houlihan
Email: zion89 (at) oceanfree.net (verified)

Current rating: 0
20 Mar 2003

hahaha

Saddam is Hitler, Bush is Hitler. Does it matter? All leaders have the capacity to be Hitler, that's allthe article is saying. So watch out, because it's foolish to think that the mistakes of the past can't be made again, whether people study history or not. There is nothing fundamentally different about the present day that prevents horrific motives in elected officials. The US has done some pretty horrible things in its own self interest, in the names of national security, democracy, etc + I don't doubt that that is what is happening this time + will happen again in the future. That's the nature of government.

Re: When Democracy Failed: The warnings of history
by anonymous
(No verified email address)

Current rating: -1
21 Mar 2003

I totally support our troops, they are doing what they were told to do, they were indoctrinated into the thinking that war is the answer. I however believe that our current leader is the antichrist, leading the world to destruction.

Re: When Democracy Failed: The warnings of history
by n/a
Email: n (at) n.net (unverified!)

Current rating: -1
22 Mar 2003

You all shall soon see how oppressed the Iraqi people are, how few of them were hurt by us + how threatening Saddam was to the world.

Re: When Democracy Failed: The warnings of history
by juan
Email: xyzleont (at) socal.rr.com (unverified!)

Current rating: 0
29 Mar 2003

Not bad, since more than superficial similarities abound, e.g. legitimacy based on a failed middle class and German monopoly capital - hitler was merely the mediation between the two.
Just as today, inter-imperialist rivalries - unfinished and exacerbated by WWI and the great depression - were intensifying rapidly, nationalisms were on the rise, the capital system in an effort to survive negated intl. law, etc.
Social forces (classes) should not be neglected...they are Determinant, and particularly so in the emerging war of all against all.
We are now fully within the death agony of the nation-state system even as creation of a centralized world government is absolutely impossible. It's not the 1930s or even the 1960s but 'leaders' seem unaware of this.
The World has been/is objectively socialized yet we remain generally unconscious of such a basic reality. Too many illusions/delusions.

Re: When Democracy Failed: The warnings of history
by juan
Email: xyzleont (at) earthlink.net (unverified!)

Current rating: 0
29 Mar 2003

For a good history, written at the time, try to locate/read a copy of "Fascism in Germany" by Leon Trotsky.
You will note then that, even though a different conjuncture, many of the social forces/dynamics involved are similar.

Still, it's no more than a convenience to blame this or that leader when in fact the problems are systemic. 'Leaders' have little power when confronted with the percolating hurricane.

In very, very, short form, the contradictions between the political (as a now anachronistic system of national states) and on the other side, the economic (as a fully and objectively socialized global economy manifest not only by obvious interdependencies but also the more than 850,000 subsidiaries of transnational firms). 'The global assembly line' is very real and has very really transcended the political structures which especially over the last decades have helped generate it...pretty dramatic contradiction out of which flows so much of recent international, subnational, ethnic, class, tensions and wars.
Economic fusion has generated increasing degrees of political fission. Not 'news' until we recognize that the system has arrived at its absolute global limits, a condition 'built in' from day one.
The inherent expansionary dynamic of the capital system has again 'jammed', transforming 'creative destruction' into mere destruction...a matter of its survival even if - today - that survival entails its + our, negation.
This can be, is being, prevented. Once again, as it has been before, the choice is Socialism or Barbarism + - particularly when we understand that the present crisis is also hard evidence of govts' weakness - it is a choice.

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