The Productive Force

– for better or for worse?

The ‘productive force’- according to Karl Marx, consisting of all waged and salaried labour – also known as ‘the international working class’ designs, produces, operates and maintains every built thing, including all artificial intelligence (AI) together with its rapidly increasing number of algorithms, all of which can now be incorporated into the machinery for peace or the machinery for war ie; for better or for worse.

With this in mind it should not be difficult to understand why the owners of the productive force – also known as ‘the ruling class’ are thereby totally dependant on their waged and salaried producers for everything they own, especially the accumulation of their privately owned wealth. Most if not all modern socio-economic forms of governance and productivity have been globalized and designed to maintain this relationship between the owners of the productive force and the actual producers, including the waged and salaried ‘universal soldier’. The socio-economic relationship between the ruling class and the working class is such that it increases the wealth, power and influence of the ruling class, gained through an increasing exploitation and impoverishment of the working class. Ultimately the above mentioned machinery for war only exists to protect the privately owned property and wealth of the ruling class. Moreover, for the universal soldier, most of whom are better paid and cared for than their fellow working class producers, there is a requirement or command of strict obedience and preparedness to sacrifice their lives during war(s), as part of their exploitation.

It can now be writ large on anyone’s digital tablet that we need to replace the dominant capitalist socio-economic forms of governance and productivity that place such emphasis on the accumulation of privately owned property and wealth for the ruling class; with socio-economic forms of governance and productivity that place the emphasis on meeting the social needs of the productive force – the working class. Doing away with the ruling class constructed artificial barriers between nation states and meeting the basic social needs of the productive force should eventually eliminate the need for standing armies and the obscenely expensive military industrial complex required to support them. A more sophisticated socio-economic form of governance and productivity could achieve a more sustainable level of social equality, more cooperative international trade and far greater freedom for cultural diversity throughout the entire planet. As indicated above, only the productive force itself is capable of achieving this, it alone has the incentive, the labour, the intellect and thereby the capacity for replacing the existing profit driven capitalist system with a more sophisticated and sustainable system throughout and on behalf of the entire planet and all of its life supporting systems.

For the global productive force to make such a revolutionary change in time to avoid what is now a three pronged capitalist threat of nuclear war(s), catastrophic climate change and the militarization of AI, it must first recognise itself as being the international working class engaged in a class war against the international ruling class. Then the productive force must unite and prepare itself to participate in a political program of ‘world socialist revolution’, such as the program of the International Committee of the Fourth International (ICFI) and its branches of the Socialist Equality Party (SEP). [i] Anything less than the unification of the productive force under the banner of a political program and party of world socialist revolution – as defined by Karl Marx and Leon Trotsky, is doomed to continue being threatened, exploited and impoverished by the capitalist ruling class. The productive force must now make a choice to be a force for better or for worse.

 

[i] Information about which is made available on a daily basis via the pages of the World Socialist Website WSWS.org

The Class Struggle.

 

I am no expert on the subject of class struggle, in fact I am relatively new to it having only recently (since 2010) chosen the International Committee of the Fourth International (ICFI) and its Socialist Equality Party (SEP) as my preferred political party and the World Socialist Web Site (WSWS.org) and Monthly Review (An Independent Socialist Magazine) as my preferred source of political and economic information. My reason for wanting to participate in and contribute to the class struggle as defined by the SEP, is because it is a political story that supports my pre-existing world view and personal values. For me this is a combining of spiritual and secular stories that would have been most unlikely without the benefit of the World Wide Web.

As with our spiritual vision, so too with our ecological and social visions,they are planetary by nature and PaGaian by name.

(Taffy Seaborne & Glenys Livingstone Ph.D.)

Furthermore, I look forward to being corrected, guided and encouraged by my fellow comrades who have had a much longer engagement with the class struggle than I. In the mean time and for what its worth, this is how I now see the class struggle.

The very necessity of general political action, affords the proof that in its merely economic action capital is the stronger side.

(Karl Marx – Value, Price and Profit, 1935)

There’s class warfare, all right, but its my class the rich class, that’s making war and we’re winning.

(Warren Buffet  – New York Times, Nov 26th 2006)

A report commissioned by Bloomberg last month found that the world’s 300 richest people (0.000004 percent of the world’s population)had a net wealth of $3.7 trillion in 2013, an increase of $524 billion (13 percent) in one year alone.

(WSWS.org  – Editorial, Feb 7th 2014)

The revolt of the underlying population therefore must take the form of a general political offensive against what is an unequal and irrational system…All reality and all hope demand a new system of production and consumption, beyond capital and beyond mere wage labor.

(Fred Magdoff & John Bellamy Foster, Monthly Review, Jan 2014)

Even Karl Marx whose academic rigour on the subject of economy put him in a league of his own, could not have predicted the unfathomable levels of wealth accumulated by todays ruling class.

The single most important requirement for a successful overthrow of the ruling class and its divisive nation-state, religious, imperialist and monopoly finance capitalism system of dominance, is for the rest of us – at least 99% of the planet’s population, to believe in and act as though we are a single opposing class – the working class.

To divide and conquer is clearly a very successful strategy used by the ruling class. Consequently, it stands to reason that anything more divided than a two class struggle must work proportionally in favour of the ruling class being able to continue its dominance over the rest of us.

At present (2014 CE) the ruling class has the rest of us divided in more than enough ways for them to believe that their hegemony cannot be seriously threatened, let alone overthrown. The ruling class has successfully divided the rest of us into nation states, racial groups, religions, political parties, upper, middle and lower socioeconomic groups, and by gender.

While some of these divisions may seem important to us at present – especially if we are enjoying a relatively good quality of life and we don’t like the idea of being labelled working class, this is not an option for the vast majority of our fellow human beings. Moreover, an accelerating number of those among us who have enjoyed relatively more wealth than most – the so called middle and upper classes, find themselves being laid off and looking for work in a rapidly shrinking market place. The reason why most of our fellow human beings cannot enjoy a peaceful, sustainable, decent quality of life is because we have allowed – even encouraged, a disproportionately small (probably less than 1%) number of us to morph into becoming a very powerful, imperialist and greedy ruling class.

At the species level we humans have never really needed a minority ruling class. Throughout most of our material (biological) and cultural (educational) evolution we not only looked after our basic needs in a communal way, we also invented all the pre-requisites for our present post industrial, modern technological era, all of which we produced without the encumbrance of a ruling class.

Only when the rest of us reduce the class struggle down to just two classes will we be able to overcome the ruling class strategy of divide and conquer. Only then will we be able to achieve victory and a single – or better still classless, society that produces its communal needs and provides a decent quality of life for all of us, not just a privileged few of us.

Nowadays (2014 CE) there is an even more compelling reason for the rest of us – working class, to rid ourselves of the ruling class. Evidence is now mounting with the re-militarization of Japan and Germany that it won’t be long before history repeats itself for the umpteenth time and the sabre rattling of the ruling class will once again trip over into war between so-called ‘super powers’. Then as before, it will be the rest of us – particularly the youth among us, who will be called upon by the ruling class to do their killing.

It is no accident that as Abe is refurbishing Japanese militarism, the new grand coalition government in Germany is repudiating its previous policy of military restraint. Nor is the Japanese government the only one rewriting history. The British and Australian governments, among others, are seizing on the anniversary of World War I to glorify the bloodbath that claimed the lives of millions in the inter-imperialist struggle for colonies, markets and strategic dominance.

(WSWS.org Editorial, 8th Feb 2014)

Because of what is now happening in Eastern Europe (Ukraine), the Middle East (Syria) and in the Asia-Pacific, we must alert ourselves to the violent, imperialist nature of the international ruling class and the fact that it is unable and unwilling to fight its own battles, for this it relies entirely on the rest of us in the form of a universal soldier. It is up to the universal soldiers among us – be they a conscript, volunteer, policeman, mercenary, terrorist or so-called insurgent, to think carefully about the story going on between their ears, then hopefully come to believe in and act as a member of a majority working class that simply refuse to kill or be killed at the behest of a violent, imperialist, minority ruling class.

It is not as though we don’t have any alternatives, there are plenty of them –

“There are a great many elements for an alternative developmental model. The alternative to privatization is not to privatize. The alternative to increased competition is more collaboration. The alternative to bureaucracy and control from above is democratization and participation from below. Alternatives to increasing inequalities and poverty are redistribution, progressive taxation, and free universal welfare benefits. The alternative to the destructive speculation economy is socialization of the bank and credit institutions, the introduction of capital controls, and the prohibition of dealing with suspect financial instruments. The list can be made much longer than this.”

 (Asbjorn Wahl, European Labor – Monthly Review, Jan 2014),

furthermore the International Committee of the Fourth International (ICFI) and its Social Equality Party (SEP) with its emphasis on permanent revolution, international socialism and equality is showing us how to get where we need to be by laying out the red carpet…

Malpataffy,

Feb 2014