A DIAGNOSTIC SUMMARY OF DEGENERATE TRENDS: THE CANCER SYSTEM’S INVASION AT ALL LEVELS OF GLOBAL LIFE-ORGANIZATION
The cancer system has remained blocked out of view by three major screens against understanding. First, there is the underlying nature of the disorder which invades and depredates across borders of life and function without diagnosis. Second, there is system selection against this understanding so far as it calls into question the validity of the surrounding ruling system – the ancient taboo. Third, the technical specialization and silo thinking which are like the blind men and the elephant who can each feel only one disconnected part. In general, the ruling economic paradigm is life-blind in principle, and so is a priori incompetent to detect the life-destructive trends becoming worse.
A clear framework of system trends is required for diagnosis and response. It unifies the manifold and many-levelled disorders identified in isolation into a systematic and full-spectrum account now lacking in any received literature. Each italicized principle below reveals a macro-system disorder with all interlocked into one global system of life-host degradation, depletion and destruction at all levels – the common cause of the rising crises of our age.
- The principal public vehicle of disorder is miscalled ‘economic growth’ which is pervasively called for by political and economic leaders on national and international planes whatever its draw-down of non-renewable resources. In fact, the multiplying money-sequences cumulatively destroy the conditions of real and future economic growth by their ever-increasing throughputs of non-renewable energies and materials like water, arable soil, and fossil fuels which are cumulatively depleted and despoiled. A finite planet cannot sustain the growing and cumulative draw-down, depletion and exhaustion of these non-renewable bases of human existence. Yet ‘zero growth’ analysis which best identifies this trend itself fatally fails to recognize the distinction between life-serving economic growth which is essential and the destructive dyseconomic growth it flags.1
- This dyseconomic growth has even more disastrous effects than rundown of physical energies and materials. It is destructive of life-systems at all levels by a non-stop, spreading destruction and pollution of other natural species, habitats and sink recycling capacities with resulting extinction spasms, radical loss of biodiversity, and degraded human environments across the world. The measure of the depth of this generalizing ecocide is that even those who exactly see the problem of (1) do not distinguish between material and energy resources and living ecosystems (for example, pulp and fish plantations versus forest and marine ecologies). The cancer system most catastrophically attacks life-systems at all levels, but life is not an economic category nor its means at any level.
- If noxious growth is recognized rather than denied as in planetary ‘greenhouse effect’ or ‘climate warming’, the problem is not resolved. Rather, it is packaged in euphemistic names obscuring the reality of destabilization of planetary climate and hydrological cycles and geophysical integrity by system-produced carbon pollutions. Simultaneously, the corporate money-sequence maximization behind the problem is made the solution by expanding money-sequences with no demonstrated life-function into new circuits of growth at public expense. Carbon credits – decoded, free public equity in licenses to pollute – are traded among the major polluters to maximize their profits while carbon effluents increase in aggregate. As with all of (1) through (33), the common cause is not recognized or defined.
- What permits, enforces and limitlessly extends all of these increasing system assaults on planetary life-organization are the corporate-right fiat systems packaged as ‘free trade’. As documented elsewhere in this study, these myriad-rule systems recognize only transnational corporate money-sequence rights, and disregard all life-rights and requirements. Overriding elected legislatures at the same time, they enable limitless corporate predation of societies’ domestic resources, home markets, labour remuneration, and public tax revenues at race-to-the-bottom costs with no regulating life-standards. The so-called Codex Alimentarius and Sanitary and Phyto-Sanitary Agreement do not prevent but enable non-communicative disease epidemics by junk foods, cumulative stripping of food nutrients, and inadequately tested genetic engineering, while selecting against local real food production by large-scale corporate farming and processing standards.
- Policing this system with financial embargo for non-compliant nations are, in the lead, IMF structural adjustment programmes (SAPs). Armed with ‘austerity budgets’, their ‘conditionalities’ for loans to pay compound-interest debts to Wall Street or other big private banks are governed by one underlying principle not yet defined: they always single out for attack and stripping whatever serves the lives of the victim societies’ citizens and life-support systems – public employment and investment, social programmes, workers’ and family incomes, and production for home societies. These unending cuts are structured to continue paying rising compound interest rates to private banks, and to open borders to operation (4). This stripping of people’s life-support systems has crossed continents, and now proceeds through the European Union to undermine by far the world’s most evolved transnational social life-organization.
- Unseen behind all of these depredatory trends of transnational corporate-conglomerate money-sequencing is the global financial system led by Wall Street and London transnational private banking centres which multiply money-sequences at their source through two major pathways of turning life and life-support systems into limitlessly more money demand for private money-sequencers: (i) compound-interest debt-loans to governments, businesses and individuals with a small fraction long moving towards zero of the money to back the loans (which are backed by indebted governments themselves as we saw in 2008 and after) and (ii) speculative money-sequencing of multiplying kinds with no productive function (with private banks now using their fractional-reserve system to gamble in derivatives, arbitrages, currency and bond attacks, credit default swaps, food futures, and so on). Everything of value is thus manipulatable by conglomerate money-sequences exponentially exploiting price margins with no limit to the damaging effects on human life, societies and ecologies. (6) is the primary driver of the cancer system.
- At the direct level of nations’ food supply and security, transnational corporate factory farming, processing and fast foods increasingly monopolize the world’s food system by one underlying form of money-sequencing growth that degrades the world-system food at all levels. Industrial crop extraction, processing, transportation and sale-consumption cycles without nutritional standards at any stage form the main causal mechanism of global food and water contamination. The invariant results are to cumulatively impoverish and uproot tens of millions of people producing food for their local communities; to destroy soil fertility by mono-industrial methods; to control, reduce and contaminate seed genes; to extract nutritional elements to process to mass transport and sale; to select for addictive disease-causing junk foods and beverages; to waste whatever does not increase oligopolist money-sequences; and overall contribute one-third to one-half of global carbon emissions.2
- Financial and food systems interact. For example, food prices rise to unaffordable levels from heavily subsidized biofuels for machines replacing cereals and other foods for human life compounding the transnational corporate system trend to ever less nourishing food for human beings whose vitamin and mineral values are in descending profile, debasement and contamination by residue herbicides, unbioassayed chemical and carcinogenic additives, with massive antibiotic injection into livestock, generating resistant bacteria strains undermining modern medicine’s primary disease-fighting advance. On the wider ecological level, the money-sequencing corporate industrial food system simultaneously overruns biodiverse forests and lands with mono-crop soil mining, cumulatively deprives birds and other animals of habitats, and poisons them with pesticides and toxins flowing into rivers, lakes and aquifers (for example, from industrial pig farming). Every mutant practise is to maximally grow private or corporate money-sequences.
- At the same time, human living spaces rapidly degenerate for increasing majorities of people across rural-urban divisions. Forced urbanization by Trend (8) replaces healthy country conditions of clean air, movement space, and biodiverse surroundings by overcrowded slum conditions with lack of sanitary water and sewage facilities. The rural communities which are left behind disintegrate as living communities while being despoiled by industrial corporate mining of soils, forests, and minerals. Industrialized working conditions are simultaneously reversed to inhuman life-conditions by the export of manufacturing jobs to the third world so as to reduce labour, social and environmental costs for money-sequences. The life-space of work in the developed world itself is made toxic by Trend (10). What natural life-spaces remain are meanwhile cumulatively erased or degraded for developer money-sequences with plaza-sprawl strips and high-rise mono-blocks across former countrysides and local communities.3
- For ever-greater majorities at the same time, the nature of human work and free time are increasingly dehumanized by the transnational money-sequence system. Working hours continue to increase for the employed across the world, while ever more people are unemployed with disease causation. Leisure time is increasingly inactive in nature occupied by corporate commodities in conflict with human and natural life-functions. As alienations of work, products and free time from life-needs and capacities rise, elimination of prior professionally self-regulating forms, disappearing job security, mass increase of dead-end jobs, and chronic un-or under-employment grow. Unions and union protections, local management and service structures, relationships with what enables rather than disables peoples’ lives are progressively abolished as ‘globally competitive to survive’.
- In systemic correlation, continual large-scale disinvestment of all public sectors serving the protection and enabling of human and ecological life proceeds by the same ruling money-sequence demands. Masked by the ‘necessity to pay down public debts and deficits’ which have been constructed by continuous tax reductions and handouts to corporate money-sequences and by cumulative compound-interest payments to private banks without the legal tender to back them, the public commons base of society is cut by cut eaten away. In guise of ‘private-public partnerships’ and ‘efficiencies’, what is left of life-serving public sectors is simultaneously privatized with higher-cost and lower-service performance. Together these trends entail that public capacities to protect and enable human and environmental life are incrementally degraded, slashed and eliminated by states to serve life-blind corporate money-sequences in one-way reversal of civil commons and humanity’s social evolution itself.
- Reinforcing (11), trillions of dollars of public money investment continues to be poured into armed-force budgets of military and police systems to enforce the global money-sequence system against all resistance. The unseen inner logic is to advance mechanical capacities to annihilate or disable human life and life-capacities of civilian populations (now 95 per cent of military casualties), and to deprive life-serving public functions at the same time by these state expenditures. Structured to destroy human life and life-conditions in ever more efficient ways by publicly funded science, armed forces expenditures rise as the primary enemy to justify them no longer exists, with their forces most expensively deployed to destroy unarmed or defenceless social orders and movements not fully subordinated to private transnational money-sequence rule – the cancer system’s moving line of homicidal terror and aggression.4
- Complete unaccountability of ownership and management to life-standards of their processes and products is built into the global money-sequence system. Banking packages with no connection to locality or need, leveraged buyouts, mergers, asset-stripping and dereliction with no productive function, multiplying margin exploitation at every site of transnational exchange, toxic consumer commodities that disable life, slave and labour and starvation wages, ecocidal practices as standard – these are all expressions of the cancer system. With no independent regulators of its growth and spread, life-requirements at all levels are increasingly overrun for no reigning purpose but money-sequence self-multiplication. Countervailing forces of independent public monitoring and regulations, union standards of life security, and alternative social models are systemically eliminated with the underlying law of ‘global deregulation’ and ‘efficiency’ to strip all life-serving costs – living wages, pensions and benefits, environmental standards, and taxation for public goods.
- The ‘casino economy’ of money-sequencing with no life-function thus replaces the real economy at all levels across borders. With no corrective regulation or direction by any international body or policy, the hollowing out of productive, labour, social and ecological life-supports of the economy deepen and widen in transferring money demand and investment demand to conglomerate money-sequences feeding on, depriving and reshaping life-hosts at all levels. Ever more unearned and untaxed financial revenues and transactions, exponentially rising financial multipliers replacing global trade in tangible goods, and state-bankrupting rights of money-sequence speculators are central symptoms. Perpetual attacks on sovereign currencies and bonds, taxation rates, stable capital investment, secure future foods, and life-support bases plunder societies across continents with only blame of the victims and demands for more. At the system-wide level, the very circulation system of human society is reversed from producing means of life for human beings and their conditions of existence to multiplying money demand for conglomerate private money-sequences with no committed life-function. In the background, all is assumed as ruled by an ‘invisible hand’ which cannot be interfered with any more than with divine design.
- Thus the crises grow and advance into the cradle and historical centres of Western democracy itself with transnational banks and syndicate money-sequencers attacking sovereign currencies and bonds, downgrading governments to make them pay more, and invading the lives of every citizen’s home and job security, future employment, and public services of every kind. So long as credit, money supply and compounding debt are controlled by transnational private banks, governments and citizens become ever more debt-enslaved to them. So long as public bank control does not return the currency-creating power to constitutional government, the cancer system strips social life-organization and support systems across continents – now full bore into the European Union and threatening all who do not convert to competitive private money-sequence growth free of social obligation.
- In fact, the debt crises of nations, individuals and productive businesses are all driven by transnational private bank conglomerates leveraging deposits to exponentially more money demand than possessed in non-productive speculations subsidized, backed by, and bailed out with public money. This is the genetic code of the global money-sequence cancer at the marrow, and it cumulatively eviscerates the financial means of social and ecological life-support systems to serve no life-requirement while violating them all to multiply itself. Freed from former ‘Glass-Steagall’ regulation not to speculate with depositors’ money, the banks’ money goes to fast leveraged returns and service fees on huge volumes of turnover rather than any life-good investment. Where bank interest rates have been kept low since 2000 in the US-banker state to sustain the compounding debt cycles replacing the real economy, Wall Street metastasized its debt-web far wider by fine-print extortionate debt mortgages on increasingly hollowed-out citizens borrowing against their homes for fraudulent sale to foreign and local governments and pension funds. Thus forms the black hole of the financial cancer sucking out demand for life-goods across the world without recognition of it.
- Locking in and extending trends of (1) to (16), a transcontinental police-state system is globalized after 9-11 to suppress resistance anywhere to the mutating global corporate system of cumulative life-system degradation, rapine, and destruction. The 9-11 pretext which launched permanent war for oil on the Islamic societies sitting on or blocking access to the premium reserves in the world is, more broadly, the cancer system metastasizing across remaining borders of international law, religious culture, and non-usurious system as its ‘freedom’. Sustaining the 9-11 wars for foreign corporate access to oil reserves everywhere, and, at the same time, justifying omnibus legal override of civil resistance across borders is the ‘Reichstag Fire pretext’ of the third millennium. The official conspiracy theory of ‘9-11’ violates the laws of physics in the gravity-speed collapse of fireproof steel infrastructure and rules out the primary forensic question of criminal investigation, cui bono, but legitimates cross-border suppression of the rising social immune resistance of civil commons – the system mutation required to enable every armed and financial invasion since.
- Underlying and interconnecting with the free transnational operation of life-destructive money-sequence multiplication are escalating criminal trades in narcotics, weapons, and work slaves (including hundreds of thousands of children for prostitution). These can be state-sponsored, bribe-tolerated or strategically manned or not, but they all have multiplied in money value and homicidal violence in correlation with the rule of transnational corporate-trade fiats and free money-capital flows. All are forms of ‘free trade’, as all once were before. None declines, and all grow. Vast ‘shadow banking’ accounts across borders leverage the criminal trillions in cash as new money-sequence driver of the cancer system spreading wider and deeper into life and life-support systems. Social life-organization to repel the cancer system at this level requires it first at the legal level.
- Consumerism is a degenerate trend of human motivation complementing money-sequence greed as the primary desire drivers of the system’s growth through individual and social life-hosts. Consumerism is a degenerate trend insofar as it is individuals wanting ever more commodities independently of and against their life-needs. Greed is the internal correlative of money-sequences multiplying to more with no limit. The two are interlocked and are pervasively conditioned for by the surrounding mass media. Money greed is built into the cancer system – ‘grow the bottom line or die’. And consumerism is how it is done – pushing ever more unneeded commodities by subliminal and addictive means. Greed of both sorts is the psychological dynamic of the cancer system – but also the choice space of individual and the society to refuse, the inner battleground of life-sequence versus money-sequence ways.
- Corporate mass commodities – the middle term of conglomerate money-sequences – are correlated with disabling non-communicable diseases of cancer as well as cardiovascular diseases, chronic respiratory diseases, diabetes, obesity, malnutrition, and mental disorders: which, in turn, are ever more widespread by corporate globalization. This system trend like all the others still spreads and deepens so that multiple non-infectious diseases which were non-existent before have together become the major killer of human beings on the planet. As throughout, the cause is preventable by life-standards governing product outputs and sales, but these are anathema in the cancer-growth system. Yet local success of individual, social and government campaigns to reduce intake of the most powerfully addictive commodity, cigarette smoke, shows immune resistance can grow over time once there is recognition.
- An increasing monopolist corporate control of the mass media across continents masks, justifies and promotes (1) to (20), while systematically excluding exposure of these degenerate trends. While the mass media could inform populations to end the cancer system by known means, they are the advertising vehicles to both mask and grow the corporate money-sequences. Thus corporate media texts and images are governed by four principles of distortion: (i) to select for what validates the system (glorification of money riches, wealthy celebrity icons, and wars on alien peoples); (ii) to invalidate and attack system opponents and critics as always foolish or evil; (iii) to report only the point of view of system agents in social conflicts and wars; (vi) to be accountable only to private money-sequencing to more. Herein lies the dominant social immune disorder in the global cancer system.
- Simultaneously, a transnational corporate restructuring of societies’ higher education and research bodies grows which prevents social understanding of and resistance to (1) to (21) in the independent knowledge and learning centres of the world. Students are increasingly debt-loaded with no life-security, equated to paying consumers for delivered course packages, and reduced to money-sequencing their own education to future positional advantage in the system. At the same time overall, university presidents are fund-raising corporate CEOs with millionaire salaries; faculty are specialist technicians without critical questions; new knowledge is increasingly equated to monopoly patents; and corporate services and markets are the university’s mission in place of higher research for the public good. The University thus reverses its long constitutional objectives to be another money-sequencing agency selecting against rather than for critical understanding with more future private money for each the new and unspoken first law of choice and learning.
- Following from the systematic processes of degeneration of evolved social life-organization to money-sequence competition for survival, steep declines of social life-cohesion, affiliation, trust and life-security spread through national and local communities across borders. While this degenerate trend is increasingly recognized even by right-wing leaders, the system cause of it is not. Ever more government cutbacks on the majority’s job security and opportunities, salaries and benefits and social life-support systems thus deepen although their deprivation causes the very loss of social ties and mutual security which all reject. We may observe again here the system’s incapacity for feedback loops for resolving even recognized crises.
- Where public and scientific alarm rises with ever more undeniable facts of global ecological degeneration and destabilization, publicly funded response is narrowed to new opportunities for private corporate money-sequencing backed by public giveaways with no proven result of solving any problem. The result is more lavishly state-subsidized schemes of global corporate carbon markets whose ‘credits’ or licenses to pollute in transnational corporate trade have failed to reduce absolute emissions; or greenwash energies such as colossal industrial wind turbines defacing landscapes, killing birds and bats in large numbers, and infra-sonically toxic to humans while not significantly reducing net fossil-fuel demand or effluents. Here diagnosis may again discern the interlocks of the cancer system even where a rising crisis is seen. When the corrective feedback loops at last begin to respond to a recognized trend of degeneration, they too are invaded and diverted to new conglomerate money-sequences deepening the global disorder rather than resolving any of it.
- Concealing all of (1) to (24) is a post-1945 global measure of society’s well-being – GDP – which is itself blind to life-depredating trends. Its standard measure of social welfare represents only total money spent during the year for private commodities and services which may as well disable life and life-support systems as enable them. For the GDP is perfectly indifferent to life-necessities; blinkers out natural resource and environmental degradations and destructions; excludes all household and subsistence work as ‘economically inactive’; and counts money expended for car wrecks, cancers and harmful commodities as equivalent economic values. Nourishing foods, clean energy, employment, climate stabilization and all other universal life-requirements count for nothing in its price metric. Yet demand for GDP growth continues unabated from all directive levels of the system.
- In consequence of both the deepening restructuring of societies to degrade, deplete and destroy life-support systems and to entitle, subsidize and policy support only transnational money-sequence gains over 25 years, the system disorder grows into the most developed societies with socially ruinous inequality an increasing effect. That is, ever more extreme inequality of income across the globe correlate with ever lower life-standards of happiness, health, life expectancy, trust, literacy and educational attainment; and, conversely, ever more unemployment, violence, obesity, prisons, drug use, mental disease, and unsupportable births.5 GDP misses even this sharply widening income inequality because it measures only aggregate money sums indifferent to all of them. What is still not recognized in the burgeoning literature of inequality’s correlation to social ill-being, however, is that ever worsening inequality is not the cause, but the effect of the cancer system.
- While the rising allocation of the financial lifeblood of contemporary civilization to non-productive and life-blind money circuits is the genetic code of the cancer system, its disastrous effects also undermine the money-sequence system of commodity and profit growth itself. That is, systemic income and benefit deprivation of the great majority hollows out the aggregate money demand of the capitalist market towards increasing recession and collapse. Without correction, the money-sequence mechanism self-destructs by its own supply-and-demand laws. This has been known since Keynes, but mutant neo-theory cannot recognize the endlessly confirmed law: people without secure jobs and incomes are a problem that the market mechanism cannot correct by ever lower wages and benefits and reverse redistribution. Yet when mass disemployment of manufacturing and public jobs and benefits reduction dispossesses even the majority of the First World so they can no longer spend what they do not have, a ‘loss of consumer / investor confidence’ is blamed – the stock incantation blocking out the structural disorder which more and more depredates the richest societies into reversal of centuries of rising majority wealth.
- In terms of social, ecological and individual life-hosts altogether, the macro pattern is system cancerous. Life and life-conditions are systematically deprived and looted across borders to feed corporate money-sequences so that life-system flows themselves are reversed to grow them whatever their rising dispossession and despoliation of life-hosts at all levels. The symptoms are many, but their unifying pattern is unseen: ever more de-taxation of the corporate rich by massive rate reduction, loopholes and off-shore evasion which increasingly cripple and bankrupt all life-serving public sectors; further vast subsidies and bailouts of the dominant money-sequences without productive function; ever more destructive technologies to dismantle, pollute and deplete natural resources and ecosystems without life-protective regulators; and unpaid-for armed forces, infrastructures, court and caging services to enforce the overall reverse life-flow system. Resource bases and ecosystem services are converted into corporate money-sequences and commodities against life-capital needs while workers’ pay, benefits, public jobs, pensions, social insurances, higher education support, age and disability pensions, and all other former revenue sources for the 99 per cent correspondingly drop across the board. Throughout the reverse-flow system is represented as ‘necessary sacrifices’ for ‘the return to prosperity’ that cannot in fact come because system allocation is to grow the life-blind private transnational money-sequences through their social and natural life-hosts without requirement of life-capital function.
- A growing democratic reversal corresponds at the political level to ensure that electoral processes do not limit the freedom of the agents of the monolithically multiplying corporate money-demand system. ‘Money wins 99 per cent of elections’ with attack ads and public lying as rising norms. Increasing masses of people tipping to majorities, especially the poor and young, do not participate in voting which only decides which big-money party gets in. Image-marketing elections of, for, and by the rich are now wholly deregulated by the 2010 US Supreme Court decision to erase all spending limits to protect money’s ‘free speech’. While the trend degenerates to the point where, in Greg Palast’s epigram for the process, ‘Democracy is the best that money can buy’, the totalizing conversion of life to money-sequences deepens and widens at the political as well as material and economic levels. Paralysis of will to resolve any problem at the official level and months-long Occupy Wall Street protests with violent police attacks on them are the unconnected
- As ‘democracy’ becomes a money-sequence system in which the state is increasingly privatized for multiplying spoils of taxpayers’ wealth, dominant corporate and bank money-sequences become more dominant. While there is breakthrough recognition of this disorder in terms of ‘the 1 per cent versus the 99 per cent’, there is no evident structural understanding of why these effects still grow despite unprecedented public backlash. Structureless thinking rules so that even protestors and critics are in disconnect from the causal structure of what is protested against and from the principles of its resolution. The common system cause of the rollback of centuries of productive worker gains, society’s long-evolving public resources of rising well-being and life-protection, and the earth’s life-support systems is not recognized, and the known life-coherent alternatives (for example, a public banking system and graduated life-standards in trade systems) are not grounded in, defined or even spoken by star opponents.
- ‘Economics’ and ‘economic theory’ are least capable of recognition or resolution because they rule out universal life-requirements and goods by confinement to private money-price-and-capital mechanisms. The ‘gospel of Economics’ (Paul Samuelson’s approving term) is a closed value system of private money capital and priced commodities and so plummeting life-capital, disabling goods, and common life-ground destruction cannot be understood or corrected in principle.6 Existing ‘economics’ and ‘economic theory’ are thus a priori decoupled from ‘the real economy’ and so cannot comprehend its ruin or the system cause of it. Life-capital has been debased to private money-sequencing; profit is decoupled from productive function; goods mean anything that can be sold; sustainability is reversed in meaning to future money profits; there is no criterion of truth in the ‘knowledge economy’; and the vaunted market-information represses information for consumers and monopolizes it against scientific inquiry. The post-2000 exposure of the mathematical ‘autism’ of economics recognizes a system disconnect, but not the deeper life-blind structure of the modern economic paradigm behind it which continues intact.7
- At social, legal and political levels of understanding, the most basic concepts and categories have become equated to opposite meanings in normal usage. The meaning of ‘person’ most defended in law refers to corporate organizations of money. ‘Development’ does not mean structuring a society’s conditions of life to enable its citizens’ lives to be better, but corporate money-sequences through commodities produced at the lowest cost without life-standards. ‘Security’ does not mean life-security, but enforcement of the corporate money-sequence system and state representatives. ‘Defense’ does not mean protection of domestic citizens against attack, but armed aggression against foreign peoples in their countries. ‘War against terror’ does not mean eliminating murderous threats and death against innocent people, but rising terror, torture and murder of thousands of innocent people with impunity.
- Wherever there is reversal of the degenerate trends – as in much of Latin America since Argentina defaulted in 2002 with unprecedented productive growth and poverty reduction since – the policy lessons of recovery are totally blocked out at the deciding levels of the global system (for example, Greece whose default on the same debt as Argentina is ruled out as ‘catastrophic’ by both officials and media of record). Thus the very policies causing economic and social ruin for over 25 years are imposed again and again with invariably devastating effects on people’s lives and real economies. Every collective social life-protection since the military defeat of Nazism is defunded. Every policy success of Latin America since 2000 is ignored. The known solutions of increased income to public spheres, employment and poorer citizens and real economic activities for life-means production by public control of publicly owned resources are anathema. This is the cancer system’s lock into what is otherwise analysed as insanity.8
No pendulum swings here. Any diagnostic process of elimination can arrive at only conclusion in the light of all the system trends and pathways of life and life-support destruction. Nothing but a cancer system can explain the fixation into ever growing life-host devastation.
Synopsis, Clarifications and Illustrations
The critical test is to find any facts which disconfirm any degenerate trend. In this light, consider the most persistent alternative explanation of ‘human population explosion’.
The Overpopulation Argument
‘Excessive population growth’ has long been a favourite explanation of downward slide of global life-support systems. The initially plausible logic is that rises of human populations have overloaded the life-carrying capacities of the planet. Yet in fact the global rate of population increase has halved since its peak of 2.2 per cent in 1963. It is still too great a load at 1.1 per cent, the answer might be. Yet not one of the degenerate trends identified above is coherently attributable to population rises. Even the rundown of material and energy resources has been led by vast wastes and unneeded uses by multiplying corporate commodity cycles propelled by private money-sequences serving a fraction of the global population. The real and underlying problem is thus concealed.
Blaming global population growth for the rising pollution, depredation, depletion and destruction of the planet’s life-support systems is, in short, a fallacy of common cause. In logical form, it is like saying ‘my sore throat caused my headache’ without recognizing flu as the common cause. In committing this fallacy, the overpopulation argument has to blinker out the most basic facts. For while some populations grow fast, others decline: namely societies where women are literate and self-determining. Lack of literacy and self-determination of women is, in turn, typically based in conditions of mass impoverishment. Yet Kerala India has a lower per capita income than most states in India and higher female literacy and a lower birth rate – all supported by state and community programmes. Population growth depends on social conditions, and the most important of these are women’s literacy and decision in child-bearing with social support systems replacing multiple births for family life-security. All of these are elements of civil commons development analysed in the final chapter of this study. This is why developed societies show significant negative endogenous population growth – all of Europe, Russia, Japan, and Canada, for example. What these countries have in common is nearly 100 per cent literacy and social life-support systems and programmes to protect and enable women to exercise informed decision. It is these social conditions which decide whether or not overpopulation is a problem.
Social life-support systems which enable reduction of population and, more deeply, life-coherent demand on resources require social investment and collective regulation – precisely what the reigning system rules out. This is the reason that when endogenous populations decline, the degenerate trends still escalate. The ‘population bomb’ argument blocks out the common cause of these degenerate tends, and that is its ideological function.
Principled Summary of the Cancer Pattern
To summarize the common system cause of the global degenerate trends which population growth cannot begin to explain:
- All of these trends are by mutations of past economic ordering to transnationally unregulated private conglomerate money-sequences;
- for whose cumulatively life-destructive growth there has been long-term failure of social immune recognition
- because of a world system of extra-parliamentary treaties conferring unilateral and unaccountable rights on transnational corporations
- which prohibit any intervention in their predatory race to the bottom of no human and ecological life-regulators and standards;
- financed by states’ yielding all constitutional powers of money and credit issue to private transnational banks
- whose growing investment pattern is depredatory with debt enslavement and casino speculation as cash base;
- with cumulative transfer of public revenues and resources to extend and enforce the dominant private money-sequences through every society and domain;
- backed by ever more invasive measures including criminal wars and crimes against humanity with impunity.
Only one explanatory frame of meaning is adequate to these advancing pathogenic trends – a cancer system at the global level of reproduction.
Social Choice by Self-Regulation versus Deterministic Explanation and Fate
There is no inexorable mechanism determining the cancer system independent of social alternative. Mechanical determinism on the level of how we live as human is a human-made disorder. In fact, every step of the cancer system has relied on a no-choice system for everyone but transnational banks and corporations – including thousands of pages of rules and small print protecting only money-sequencer rights enforced across borders with no legislative debate, decided unaccountable to and overriding prior law, adjudicated by secret trade panels of corporate-trade lawyers, and independent and above any democratic process or life-standard.
In still unconnected consequence of this private money-sequencing system of totalizing override of life-requirements at all levels, there is now no known domain of human life or social and ecological life-support systems not in macro decline in life-carrying capacity.
Health scientist José Carlos Escudero concretely concludes: ‘The difference between the current state of ill collective health and a better (and perfectly realizable) one is the mountain of dead bodies being produced every day.’9 Medical scientist Sir Michael Marmot specifies the trend that research in the social determinants of disease has shown – people’s lives are more than cut in half or maimed by their socio-economic organization.
More exactly, life expectancy is 48 years less in some countries than others, and over 20 years within countries, and the cause of lives destroyed is ‘the circumstances in which people live and work’, and whether or not their organizing systems are ‘meeting human needs’ (still unnamed). Leading the UN Commission on Social Determinants of Health and writing in the leading medical journal The Lancet, Marmot logically reasons: ‘If the major determinants of health are social, so must be the remedies’. He continues, ‘The health of the population is … is a measure of whether, in the end, a population is benefiting as a result of a set of social arrangements … From this perspective, globalisation and markets are good or bad in so far as the way they are operated affects health.’10
Dr Marmot and the WHO thus implicitly agree on the common cause of social well-being and ill-being – the ‘set of social arrangements’ which is ‘good or bad so far as the way they are operated affects health’.
We might here contrast the ruling GDP and other money-value aggregates as standard of living benchmark. A graphic later report of the WHO in 2008 featuring Dr Marmot’s diagnosis declares what GDP is numb to: ‘Inequities are killing people on grand scale.’11
LIFE-CAPITAL SEQUENCES VERSUS MONEY-CAPITAL SEQUENCES: THE TURNING POINT OF UNDERSTANDING AND RECOVERY
In factual versus ideological analysis, social-system decision is the ultimate determinant. Whether social arrangements meet human life-needs or not, and whether society is healthy or diseased in condition, is not fated, but policy derived. Thus when economic understanding shifts from money capital / money-sequences to life-capital / life-sequence as the set decider of social circumstances everything changes for the better so far as this is effectively managed. The defining paradigm shift required for world recovery is clear. Society’s ill-being or well-being is determined by sets of social circumstances which select for life rather than death, and for social life-support systems rather than money-sequence conglomerations.
The ultimate principle of distinction between social well-being and ill-being and the social-system determination of each is self-evident once defined. But it has been long lost to view. Eco-genocidal rule as divine design has instead dominated – from the extermination of first peoples in biblical times in the name of Yahweh to necessary sacrifices to ‘the Market’s invisible hand’ in modernity.12 The continuous axing of the very roots of humanity has overlooked what native peoples have to teach global capitalism: grounding in the life-requirements of community and ecological life-host; instituted relationship to fellow creatures as life-companions even in prey; and constitutional freedom from unaccountable money-sequences overriding all else. As indigenous prophecy long ago counselled: ‘When all the trees have been cut down, when all the animals have disappeared, when all the waters have been polluted, you will discover that you cannot eat money.’
Yet the trees, the animals, the waters do not factor into the ruling money-value system. They may be razed, slaughtered and poisoned with no cost or debit registered. Multiplying money-capital and commodities are what counts. The potential of cancer system grows as more and more life-means are destroyed in nature and community and more and more junk, wastes, toxins, weapons and life-despoiling commodities are produced in their stead. If money-capital and commodity sequences have commitment only to their own multiplication and economic, social and political regulations are maximally removed to enable this across all borders, the cancer system follows as predictable and predicted.
Re-Grounding in Life-Capital Against the Epochal Eco-Genocides
What is the solution? The answer is very basic. Life-capital itself must be grounded in – the wealth underlying all wealth from which all life-means and goods derive in life-capital reproduction through time. For the indigenous people as for us, life-capital is all life-wealth that produces more life-wealth without loss. Natural life-capital is the base – the forests, waters, and animals as well as climate cycles which reproduce to enable life-systems through ecological time. These are the natural capital sequences in compossibly evolving reproduction. In the Great Law of Peace of the Longhouse Peoples, we find recognition of natural life-capital in felt form. The Fire Councils open with tribute to these life-support systems as ultimate ground of the lives of all – ‘expressing gratitude to the earth where men dwell, to the streams of water – the maize and fruits – to the animals that serve as food – to the great winds – and to the sun’.13
Life-capital also includes human-made life-capital that enables the life-sequences of individuals and societies through time as well, the wealth that produces more wealth of knowledge, of life-protective law, of exchange medium itself, of water-sewer lines and electricity sources, and so on. Human-made life-capital is complexly immense all around us today. But it is not yet conceived in principle, and so is not yet distinguished from its opposite of life-destructive capital – as unregulated money-sequencing and mass-homicidal weaponry are. Life-capital and its life-destructive capital are not distinguished even by Marxists, as we see more ahead. Insofar as any life-capital – natural or human-made – is socially constructed or regulated to enable universal access of community to life-goods, it is a form of the civil commons explained in the final chapter. Yet with no concept to describe it, these most basic realities of human life on earth remains nameless and unseen. Thus life-capital is subjugated to and disappears into money capital and sequences which progressively attack life-capital to convert it into them. The same happens to the civil commons whose bases of human evolution are also increasingly attacked by the private money-sequence system, as explained in more depth in the study ahead.14
The grisly career of the cancer stage of capitalism is ultimately rooted in the global eco-genocides that began with the Spanish invasions for gold in what is now Latin America and the eco-genocides of the British-French empires across what is called North America. It was happening at the same time in a white eco-genocide of the commons by sheep-business clearances of what is now Britain. This is the dark line of modernity, ‘dripping blood and dirt from every pore’ but the meaning is repressed. It begins with investments in armed ships of invasion looking for gold, slaves and resources to multiply to limitlessly more in royal, armed-band and merchant possession. In the white eco-genocides at the same time, it is ‘clearing’ the villages and commons of Britain and Europe to grow sheep for the transnational wool trade. The new money-sequence class that emerges goes from one domain to the next across regions, times and oceans to today. While Marx sees and abhors the money-capital sequence driving the system, the life-capital destroyed in the process remains unseen as the ultimate ‘wealth that produces more wealth without loss’. The underlying life-base of the real economy remains unseen.
Few have seen tragedy in the eco-genocides of the first peoples and their life-ground because ever more production of life-goods was made possible for human beings. The gold standard prevented the complete decoupling of financial money-sequences from the productive economy and capitalist commodities were still predominantly means of life – real foods as well as new clothing, more houses, and household utensils. These life-grounds no longer hold. Rather, the cancer system becomes possible by mutations of the ruling money-sequences, as the rest of this study explains. The endless holocaust of the natural life-ground and its original peoples becomes less amnesiac since the 1960s, but the cross-racial forms, common cause and carcinogenic mutations remain even now undeciphered. The history of the world since the early 1970s has featured a great rise of ecological consciousness. But it still has no organizing concepts of life-capital or civil commons, and no little systematic connection across the phenomena of the Great Ecocide or recognition of the one causal mechanism driving every step.
At the same time, an apparent post-1945 pact of capitalism with the working class has reversed as fast as transnational private money-sequence conglomerates have been able to outsource to cheap-labour regions and sell the goods back into the First World. With no life, labour or ecological standards in the new corporate treaty-edict system of free capital and commodity flows driven by Wall Street and company multiplying them through global debt slavery and financialization of the productive economy, the cancer system has emerged in full. G-20 meetings are essentially photo-ops to cheerlead its growth. ‘No political will’, as it is euphemistically called, is built into the system. Tony Blair hymned its third-millennium turn: ‘These forces of change driving the future don’t stop at national boundaries. Don’t respect tradition. They wait for no-one and no nation. They are universal.’15
There is no human subject or life-dimension in this system worship. It is what few suspect – a life-blind disorder steeped in magical thinking that multiplies itself against all life-needs.
Seeing through the Magic Thinking of the System
In medical pathology, the object of analysis is the individual organism, and the primary instrument of understanding is the microscope. This is the first-order level of empirical study. The necessity of looking beyond the level of the individual organism to system causation of its diseases is blocked against, and the received science of cancer has remained stuck at this level. Yet as the looting and polluting of life and means of life continues at the system level with ‘no obstacles to its free capital and commodity flows’, a pattern emerges. Everywhere the invasion, contamination and hollowing out of life-systems deepen into collapses of social and ecological life-support systems as non-infectious diseases rise at the same time. From the sea bottoms to the surface phytoplankton to the atmosphere to the forest and fish stocks of the world to biodiverse life-reproduction to economic bankruptcy and worldwide civic decline and depression, one cancer pattern has cumulatively advanced across phenomena. How could economic science and policy-makers not see it?
The magic thinking has been evident for a long time in direct incantations of ‘market magic’ and ‘market miracles’ through the deregulated global money-sequence invasions across cultures. But the magic-thinking alchemy of turning the world into more money as the best of possible worlds for all by ‘the invisible hand’ has not been deciphered. Its master superstition is an unexamined given of economic science: all market exchanges for maximizing private money payoffs are necessarily productive of the public good.16 Assumed as rational in ruling doctrine, this ultimately organizing idea has combined with another pangloss inversion which completes it – all ruin by the capitalist system is for the good as ‘creative destruction’. This system theodicy was originated by Joseph Schumpeter long ago, but is still perpetually incanted.
Together these deranged but regulating assumptions explain why the ruling thought system cannot recognize the disorder however globally destructive it becomes. It is a closed and unfalsifiable belief system. This is the infallibilist circle of meaning. Without a life-value frame of diagnosis, the system’s carcinogenic properties cannot be penetrated. The mind becomes as lost in the pangloss mathematics of the ruling doctrine as investors in the world buying the robo-mortgages of Wall Street. The magic-thinking first premises are, however, required by the cancer system for its conglomerate money-sequences to go on despoiling life and life-conditions everywhere without people joining the dots. Only a re-grounding in common life requirements and real-life goods which are now blinkered out can recognize or resolve the system derangement.
Beyond the Classical, Marxian and Neo-Classical Models: The Basic Framework of Meaning
Karl Marx’s Preface to the first German edition of Das Kapital rightly insists on the necessity for principles to replace the microscope in the study of economic reproduction. ‘In the analysis of economic forms’, he writes: ‘neither microscopes nor chemical reagents are of use. The force of abstraction must replace both.’ He continues: ‘The commodity form of the product of labour – or the [money] value form of the commodity – is the essential economic cell form.’17 Marx implicitly recognizes money units as economic cells in their exchanges, replication, circulation and growth. This may be why the leading Marxian thinker alive today, David Harvey, opens his latest book with this model – which we analyse in the next section.
Yet while the life-capital model works from the money-unit as the basic cell of modern economic organization, the life-capital model is opposed to the classical and Marxian models of the capitalist system in the following all-important ways.
- It does not presuppose the gold standard – the value standard underpinning pre-1973 capitalism which Marx and everyone else long took for granted. But it was abandoned by the world’s standard currency after the ruinous destructive investment of the Vietnam War. Gold’s scarcity and requirement of labour to extract it which always brought money-sequences back to a hard objective standard of economic value was abolished. As a result, banker debt-issues and speculations that increasingly drive money circulation after 1973 can become decoupled private money-sequences self-multiplying out of control with no productive function – the cancerous possibility not even now recognized by orthodox or unorthodox economics.
- More deeply still, the life-capital base lies beneath both gold standard and non-gold standard economies and economics without recognition. It does not have its ground of value in labour power or productivity or technological progress, but in the life-capital gained and not lost by their use. Life-capital is life-value that can produce more life-value, and must be conserved and developed rather than wasted, spoiled or drawn down in either its natural or human-made forms. This is ‘the real economy’ which is so often appealed to, but without criterion. Its formal onto-axiological ground is self-evident once recognized, but is missing in received Economics.18
- The money-cell as the ‘essential economic form’ is here extended to the contemporary cancer system of free money-sequence self-multiplication with no life-capital function. Money-sequence capitalism at this stage is the opposite of economic reproduction, but unrecognized as such across schools. The ultimate problem confronted in this study is not the contradiction between forces and relations of production (‘Marxism’) or disequilibrium of supply and demand capacities of the money-capital and price system (policy-leading ‘Economics’). It is the cumulative destruction of life-capital and goods by private transnational money-sequences which is still successfully masked as ‘growth’ and ‘wealth production’.
- The opposition between capitalist money-sequences of value in mutantly non-productive forms and life-capital in all coherent forms (from ocean and soil to knowledge stocks) is the underlying life-and-death struggle of this era and human evolution itself. It decides whether there can be better life for ever more people and fellow species or whether a globalizing cancer system cumulatively destroys the social and planetary bases of their existence.
Capital, Goods and Investment: Resetting Understanding to Life-Coherence
Clear life-coordinates and standards can already recognize social health and disease at a system-wide level – rising or falling nutrition levels, literacy rates, disease ratios, air quality, water purity, noise levels, biodiversity, forest cover, soil quality, physical fitness, public and green spaces, social and artistic communication venues, education levels, housing, wildlife and marine habitats, natural and built food stock provision, and ozone protection. Each provides a benchmark of how human life is enabled by a means of life as opposed to disabled by deprivation of it. Each also unfolds into the life-capital sequences of the real global economy – becoming more inclusively coherent and enabling, or degenerating into ever more disabling degradation and deprivation. All such life-coordinates and standards are quantitatively identifiable by more or less (> or <) margin of change from the prior state of enabling / disabling life capacities – the generic life-value measure whatever the domain.
In contrast, money-value measures are life-blind. Unless regulated by life-capital standards in money-credit issue, commodity cycle regulators, and public taxation, they invert system depredations into economic gains. Armaments manufacture for wars, clear-cut forests and fished-out oceans, ever more disease-causing commodities sold, and privatized public services all increase private money-sequence and commodity gains, but degrade and destroy life-capital systems without remission. ‘Higher standards of living’ thus become absurdly equated to money-value gains even as natural and social life-support systems collapse – the cancer system in demonstration. Yet neither theory nor practice can distinguish between cancer-system growth and increased supply of real goods with a money-value metric. To regain life-ground and measure, real economic performance is evaluated in terms of life-sequences of value over money-sequences of value; life-capital over money-capital; and life-goods provision over priced-for-profit commodities. The old measures are not abolished, but reset into consistency with life-capital standards (as is already done with flourishing public utilities). The final chapter, ‘The Great Vehicle of the Civil Commons’, explains this evolving infrastructure of civilization.
In short, the basis of all real production is life-capital, and the middle term of all life-sequences is the means and support systems by which they are enabled. In all cases, the measure of value is life range with or without it. For generic example, the ratio of protein: human capability = intake: ability to think / feel / act through range. This life-value ratio is one which all can experience directly when are deprived of any universal human life-means or its intact capital base – principally, breathable air, potable water, protein and other nutrition, shelter space with amenities, social life-supports for these, knowledge process. Every life-means and need and every form of life-capital producing them instantiates these invariant principles.
When these universal life-means / necessities and their life-capital bases are deprived or eroded, life-sequences decline in capacities and enjoyment in ratio to this deprivation or erosion. The principle of measure by which we can always tell any life-good anywhere is that without which life-capacities are reduced. The necessity of each always correlates to the life-functioning range lost without it. All real needs are testable by this criterion, and all universal human life-necessities recognized by it, from breathable air to tools of learning. What enables the reproduction or growth of each of all these life goods are life-capital formations – from clean air, streets and rivers to educational systems.19
Yet economic allocation, production and success / failure of the reigning global system now have no grounding in life-capital, need or good in what they produce or cycle into the environment or deprive from life by private money-sequencing to more. The unregulated growth and multiplication of the Great Sickness thus advances. Only when understanding resets the regulating framework of value and measure to humanity’s universal life-necessities and capital bases can it be comprehended or resolved.
Blocks Against Life-Value and Capital Recognition by Even Life-World Theory
No received theory yet re-grounds in life-value, life-capital or life-necessity. Not only economic science, but the rest of the social sciences, the sciences in general, and philosophy lack this life-ground. Jürgen Habermas’s central concept of the freedom of the ‘Life-world’ from ‘the System’ appears to have such bearings. Yet his concept of ‘life-world’ (Lebenswelt) excludes all life-support systems and life-capacities except speech. Habermas’s technically erudite theory thus provides a paradigm illustration of the world crisis of mind. Even when the concept of ‘life-world’ is made central, the theory remains life-blind.
As with other ideologies, moreover, the surrounding capitalist system is assumed as efficient and unchangeable. Thus Habermas claims capitalism is a ‘norm-free system of money and power’ as if money-value and profit-maximization were physical laws.20 In fact, capitalism is a normative construction at every step, and countless first peoples being killed to impose its laws prove it. Based in this master fallacious premise, Habermas then warns that any intervention in capitalism’s ‘ethically neutralized system of action’ must be rejected. Communicative and political action ‘must leave intact the mode of operations’. ‘Holistic aspirations to a self-organizing society’ are condemned.21 Readers may behold how locked into the ruling money-sequence system even ‘life-world’ communication can be with no recognition of it.22
The problem goes deeper. Marx himself treats capitalist commodities as if they were only positive facts. Thus in his first page of Capital he writes: ‘Whether the want for a commodity springs from the stomach or from fancy makes no difference.’ In fact, there is a life-and-death difference. If magic-endowed junk rather than life-necessities are being produced, the life-system is diseased. But Marx drops the issue, and it does not arise afterwards. Even when exchange value is opposed to use-value as the innermost ‘contradiction’ of capitalism, there is no criterion of use-value for Marx or his successors. Cigarettes thus become a worker’s wage-right because habitual, and ever bigger homes are needed if others’ homes are bigger.23 Life-needs are thus blinkered out across orthodox, liberal and even revolutionary doctrines.
Understanding Life-Capital versus Money-Capital Today
The eminent system geographer and anthropologist, David Harvey, seems also to relink to the life-ground in his latest book The Enigma of Capitalism (2010), and he supposes like others that capitalism achieves ever higher standards of living. Harvey writes (with emphases added):
Capital is the lifeblood that flows through the body politic of all those societies we call capitalist, spreading out, sometimes as a trickle and others times as a flood, into every nook and cranny of the inhabited world. It is thanks to this flow that we, who live under capitalism, acquire our daily bread as well as our houses, cars, cell phones, shirts, shoes and all the other goods we need to support our daily life. By way of these [capital] flows the wealth is created from which the many services that support, entertain, educate, resuscitate or cleanse us are provided. By taxing this flow, states augment their power, their military might and their capacity to ensure an adequate standard of life for their citizens. Interrupt, slow down or, even worse, suspend the flow and we encounter a crisis of capitalism in which daily life can no longer go on in the style to which we have become accustomed.24
This model of life-giving ‘capital flows’ is not only iconic in our age, but undergirds the ruling ideology across domains and perspectives. Harvey expresses it well. Let us examine it step by step to unpack the systematic disorder now regulating cross-party meaning.
- ‘Capital is the lifeblood’ of capitalist societies. As elsewhere, the life-and-death difference between forms of capital is unconceived. Capital is assumed as money-capital. Yet it is only life-capital that denotes all that enables the provision of life goods to society that money-capital in fact erodes – arable land yield without loss of fertility (soil capital), the knowledge of laws of physics, technology and organic function (knowledge capital), society’s relations which support and enable its members across time without price (social capital), and all the natural life-support systems whose degradation destroys natural and human life by degrees (ecological capital). Money capital is blind in principle to all these forms of life-capital, and in fact systematically runs them down. To conceive it as ‘the lifeblood of all societies’ reproduces the ultimate blindness of the epoch.
- ‘It is thanks to this [private money capital] flow’, Harvey continues, ‘that we, who live under capitalism, acquire our daily bread’ as well as ‘our houses, cars, cell phones, shirts, shoes and all the other goods we need to support our daily life’. The life-and-death distinction required to recognize and respond to cancer capitalism is thus erased. Consider ‘daily bread’, the most basic of ‘the goods to support our daily life’. Capitalist bread and cereals are increasingly nutritionless, obesity-causing, and malnutritional and replace proven required food groups across individuals and cultures. At the same time, ‘capital flows’ pirate native peoples’ ancient seeds, contaminate ecosystems with untested genetic engineering, mass inject livestock with antibiotics to increasingly endanger humanity’s most important cure, mono-crop soils to deplete them, and otherwise turn the production and consumption of ‘our daily bread’ into cycles of cumulative life-capital despoilation.The ‘other goods we need to support our daily life’ by ‘[money] capital flows’ are also increasingly bads for organic, social and ecological life-hosts in extraction, manufacture, transport, sale, and consumption. The most demand-intensive ‘good’ of cars, for example, increasingly pollute air and hearing fields, kill and maim more people than all wars, run down humanity’s most valuable non-renewable fossil resource, displace healthier self-propelled forms of transportation, and consume ever more public wealth in subsidization of their use with no life-standards. What are assumed to be the ‘goods we need to support our daily life’ are, again, the opposite.
- The next claim continues the conventional belief system. ‘By way of these [money-capital] flows the wealth is created from which the many services that support, entertain, educate, resuscitate or cleanse us are provided.’ Again the opposition between life-capital to enable production of what people need to live and private money capital is blinkered out. ‘These flows’ of money-capital do not ‘support, educate and resuscitate us’. Rather, as the repressed life-capital standpoint enables us to recognize, they do the opposite in every respect. They cumulatively despoil life-support systems, mis-educate by formula of the truth as what sells, and systemically addict and poison rather than ‘resuscitate and cleanse us’.25
- The final claim continues to invert the degenerate trends of the system into benefits of it – the master structure of ‘By taxing this flow, states augment … their capacity to ensure an adequate standard of life for their citizens.’ In fact the world’s governments over three decades have done the reverse to ever greater extremes. Redistributive policies, labour standards and public spending on social benefits that might ‘ensure an adequate standard of life for their citizens’ have been unremittingly axed by capitalist states. It is in fact a law of the global cancer system to continually give tax reductions taxes to corporations and the rich while simultaneously depriving citizens of an ‘adequate standard of life’ by cutbacks on every programme ensuring it. Even one-tenth of 1 per cent of new tax on financial transactions ‘to augment’ public revenues is vilely repudiated as ‘strangling’ the investment community.26
We see here the conceptual life-blindness behind the great disorder. Even the best of system critics cannot distinguish the ‘lifeblood of society’ from the cancerous money-sequencing that consumes it. At the same time, humanity’s defining evolution by life-capital formation in civil community has no name or recognition of it – from the shared language, fires, water access, and life-security of original social organization to today’s public utilities and health care, universal education, life-protective laws, parks, libraries and art centres, to internet creative commons. Capital assumed as money capital has occupied the mind itself so that only money capital is seen and thanked while ever less of the world and life is safe from its self-multiplying money-sequence invasions. The fatal global disorder and the social capacities to recognize and to recover from it are blocked out – as if in collective amnesia.
This study tracks the struggle of second-order consciousness to recognize the meaning which decides for or against the future of the planetary life and humanity as human.
See the section above, ‘Not Zero Growth, But Zero Bad Growth’.
The corporate ‘food’ industry is responsible for up to one-half of global carbon emissions including the manufacture of chemicals and fertilizer, carbon loss from the soils, factory farm energy expenditures, refrigeration, distance transport, industrial processing (which also strips nutrients), and the clearing of forests (New Internationalist, December 2010, p. 17, citing GRAIN, special climate issue, 2009, http://nin.tl/grainseed.
‘The Overpopulation Argument’ ahead explains why it is impossible that population increase is the cause of this or other degenerate trend.
My analysis of the system in Understanding War, Toronto: Science for Peace, 1988, was written while the Soviet Union’s ‘plot for world rule’ was still the ultimate justification of more spending on US armed forces for ‘defence’ than all other federal expenditures combined. Since the Soviet Union collapsed, US military spending has doubled.
For systematic documentation of these specific correlations, see Richard Wilkinson and Kate Picket, The Spirit Level: Why Equality is Better for Everyone, London: Penguin Books, 2010.
The section ‘Life-capital Sequences versus Money-Capital Sequences: The Turning Point of Understanding and Recovery’ axiomatically defines the now confused categories of economic meaning.
See section ‘Not Zero Growth, But Zero Bad Growth‘.
Albert Einstein’s famous quote ‘Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results’ seems perfectly to apply here, but in fact the deeper disorder is that the different results are not expected. Life-destructive results simply do not compute to begin with. Only private money-sequences across borders do.
José Carlos Escudero, ‘What is Said, What is Silenced, What is Obscured: The Report of the Commission on the Social Determinants of Health’, Social Medicine, 4, – 183 – No. 3 (September 2009), http://www.socialmedicine.info, retrieved November 10, 2011.
Michael Marmot, ‘Social Determinants of Health Inequalities’, The Lancet, 365 (March 19, 2005), 1099–103.
To Yahweh is ascribed the still believed command for Israel ‘to take the whole land of Canaan [now Palestine] to own in perpetuity’ (Genesis 17:21) and in explicit prohibition of ‘any pact with them’ to ‘exterminate’ all of Palestine’s inhabitants, ‘Amorites, Hittites, Perizzites, Cananites, Hivites, and Jebusite’ (Exodus: 23–24). The logical structure of rightful eco-genocide of peoples and lands by the lawlike operations of ‘the Market’s invisible hand’ has continued into the present as demonstrated in the prior text.
White Roots of Peace, Rooseveltown, New York: Akwesasne Notes of the Longhouse People, 1971.
Because it is now widely known but not yet registered in state policy that indicators of well-being must recognize whether we are destroying the productive life-base that supports human existence, the UN University’s International Human Dimensions Programme (UNU-IHDP) seeks these indicators for its ‘Inclusive Wealth Report’ (IWR), which proposes an approach to sustainability based on natural, manufactured, human, and social capital – segments of life-capital still missing the unifying criterion of them.
Quoted by Madelaine Bunting, ‘Stop the Wheel, I Want to Get Off’, Guardian Weekly, December 2–8, 1999, p. 10.
See John McMurtry, ‘Behind Global Collapse: The Life-Blind Structure of Economic Rationality’, Journal of Business Ethics, 108 (2012), 49–60, for the exactly life-blind and fallacious structure of the supposed ‘rationality’ of homo economicus presupposed in all modern economic science and most technical philosophy.
CAPITAL: A Critical Analysis of Capitalist Production (trans. Samuel Moore and Edward Aveling), Volume One, Moscow: Progress Publishers, 1965, p. 8.
Life-value, in turn, is defined by the universal axiom: x is of value if and only if, and the extent to which, it consists in or enables a more coherently inclusive range of thought, felt being and / or action through generational time – the Primary Axiom of Life-Value Onto-Axiology, whose general theory of value provides the ultimate theoretical base of this investigation. Its full explanation is found in John McMurtry, What is Good? What is Bad? The Value of All Values Across Time, Place and Theories, Oxford: Eolss Publishers under the auspices of UNESCO, 2010.
Education is itself being undermined by the money-sequence paradigm which invades everywhere with its money-reduction input model overriding all educational and life-requirements, as this report from Marilyn Harrop, President of Britain’s National Union of Teachers, generically describes in April 2012: ‘Pressure, more pressure, forced academies, more pressure, exam targets, no pay rise, job losses, bigger classes, fast-track procedures, attacks on pensions …’. Every pressure and force downwards is to reduce money inputs at every node to enforce the money-sequence system inside the public sector and education as everywhere else for more private money outputs.
Jürgen Habermas, Theory of Communicative Action, Volume Two: Life World and System: A Critique of Functionalist Reason, Boston: Beacon Press, 1978.
Jürgen Habermas, Between Facts and Norms: Contributions to a Discourse Theory of Law and Democracy, Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1996, p. 372.
I analyse this ‘collective hypnosis’ on a wider scale as a standard pathology within presupposed social systems in ‘The Regulating Group-Mind’, in Albert Mills et al. (eds), Encyclopedia of Case Study Research, North Park, Newcastle Upon Tyne: Sage Group, 2010.
See John McMurtry, The Structure of Marx’s World-View, Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1978, for fuller explanation of this problem and its theoretical context.
David Harvey, The Enigma of Capital, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2010.
See the sections ‘More Deadly as a Causal Mechanism than the Bubonic Plague’ and ‘A Diagnostic Summary of Degenerate Trends’.
When the conservative government of France, whose head-of-state Sarkozy alone decided for the minimalist .001 tax on the predatory private money-sequencing after months of Europe reeling under them at the end of 2011, France’s currency was downgraded by private bond-raters to pay higher compound-interest charges in January 2012.