Trump. Why Trump? Why Brexit? The answer is complex but I think that what we are seeing is a reaction to the realities of globalisation. We, the people of the prosperous West, are told that we have continuous economic growth, that we are getting more and more prosperous with time. I’ve lived long enough to know that that is total bollocks. IT IS NOT TRUE. Young people of today cannot afford to buy a house, mums and dads both work to make ends meet and graduates are crippled by debt. To pay for things the banks simply print more paper money, not backed by gold or anything. Paper. Add to that the obscenity of zero-hour contracts and anyone with half a brain can see that the bollocks that is being fed to us by the TV & papers is little more than propaganda. The emperor is actually wearing no clothes. Then there is the reality of modern capitalism where half the world is dying of obesity, the other half don’t even have clean drinking water because capitalism is ultimately polarising and encourages the growing disparity between rich and poor. The difference between now and a couple of decades ago is that we have social media and the internet. Anyone can find out anything, given the time and the ability to discern the diamonds amongst the crap.
Just a word about democracy. It is an illusion. There was a time when choosing a government meant real choice but, these days, our lives are determined far more by what the big capitalist players decide to do than anything else. Our lives are far more affected by decisions made in the boardrooms of companies like Microsoft, GSK, BP & Monsanto and we didn’t vote for them. They have economies bigger than many countries. Like it or lump it. Globalisation wins, you see?
Globalisation is the ultimate expression of capitalism. Capitalism sounds like a great idea when everyone is growing rich but it’s Darwinian evolution; the survival of the fittest; the losers go to the wall and only the richest survive. Think Sir Phillip Green. Shame about the 10,000 workers who lost their jobs or the 20,000 pensioners who lose their pensions. Still, that’s capitalism for you. Tough luck…but, If you’re on the winning side you get to buy a £100m yacht. In the end, capitalism will eat itself but, here’s the rub, it will destroy the planet in the process.
Immigration. Just a quick word. Most immigrants are not fleeing war zones; they’re fleeing poverty and hopelessness. They see the rich getting richer and they want a bit of it. I’d be with them if I’d been born in Eritrea. Don’t blame them for our greed; if we had been a bit fairer in the past, they might have futures in their own countries. Do you think so-called Islamic State would be so aggressive if they had…jobs…or…were allowed to own their own countries… without a military occupation by the leaders of the free world? Ah, but they have the misfortune to be in countries floating on oil. And Uncle Sam wants control of that…thank you very much, Mohammed.
So, whether we know it or not, the voters are reacting to the reality of advanced industrial capitalism; seeing their jobs go abroad, seeing uncontrolled immigration and everything else that we see now which they didn’t see a few decades ago. They are existentialists; they believe what’s happening to them, not what they are being told is happening to them. Their politicians feed them a load of bollocks and expect them to believe it. Have you seen the appalling DHL ‘global trade’ ads on Sky News? Jeezus….talk about condescending garbage. Watch them and be sick.
History is packed with lessons that we should learn from. Translate many of Donald Trump’s speeches into German and they could have come from the mouth of Adolf Hitler. But the best lesson that might apply is that of France in 1789. Remember that an entire ruling class was ‘eliminated’ by people who had nothing on their side except numbers. I think we are seeing the early signs of another revolution; one where the rich industrialists and bankers are the enemy. Bring out the guillotines! Liberté, égalité, fraternité! Yaaayy! Nice idea, huh?
Oh, haven’t I read about that before? Yes, I think it was…just give me a minute…that chap…oh, you know how it is when you get older…name’s on the tip of my tongue…yes…Marx, wasn’t it?