Capitalist governments can’t save us from global disaster

The world’s oceans have become warmer and more acidic due to capitalism spewing out increasing quantities of greenhouse gases, particularly CO2. There is an urgent need to limit these emissions and keep the rise in global temperatures below 2°C. Failure to do so threatens not just wildlife, but increasing disasters, droughts, floods and loss of human life on a massive scale.

SARS: Symptom of a decaying society

SARS is thought to have jumped species in a poverty-stricken area of South East China where people live crowded together with their animals in conditions reminiscent of the Middle Ages. This is not unique to SARS but is at the origin of many of the most serious flu epidemics world wide.

SARS: It is capitalism which is responsible for the epidemic

The 12th of March last, the World Health Organisation (WHO) launched, for the first time in its history, a planetary alert in order to counter the development of the epidemic of an atypical respiratory disease, eventually called 'Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome' (SARS). The concern of the WHO was real and justified: thus, from March 27th (the day when the Chinese government began to give figures which conformed more to reality) to May 16th, the official number of infected people in the world went from 1300 to 7650, and deaths from 50 to almost 600 with the perspective of a mortality rate of 4% of persons infected.

Anti-globalisation: ideological poison for the proletariat

The ideology of 'anti-globalisation' is an emanation of the bourgeoisie. Its role is to derail any attempt by the working class to understand the world and draw the necessary conclusions, to drag all those who begin to question the current system back into the fold of the defence of democracy, of the capitalist state. It is thus a real danger to the working class.

An Earth Summit of exploiters and despoilers

The World Summit on Sustainable Development held in Johannesburg from August 26 to September 4 addressed issues that are vital for the survival of the human species, just as the previous summit held in Rio did ten years ago. And just like Rio it will not mark a turning point in the despoliation of the planet but the start of a new descent as capitalism plunges ever further into crisis, dragging humanity with it. Capitalism threatens humanity

Foot and mouth: A crisis spread by capitalism

The foot and mouth crisis in Britain, which is now spreading to the rest of Europe, is having a devastating economic impact. Nearly half a million animals have already been slaughtered, and the epidemic is still not yet under control. British food exports have been banned, while the closing of the countryside is losing the tourist industry a £100 million a week. The cost of the crisis is already estimated at 1.1% of GDP.

Catastrophes: Capitalism is a threat to the survival of humanity

Exceptionally strong cyclones (250km per hour) on the Indian coast in October; flood rains in western Africa between July and October, and in Venezuela in December; drought in the Middle East and Australia; storms hitting western Europe in late December. The list of meteorological calamities in 1999 was endless and has to be added to all the others of the past few years (Hurricane Mitch in central America, floods in China and Bangla Desh, etc etc). The year 2000 has begun in the same way with cyclones and floods wreaking havoc in southern Africa. Hundreds of thousands of people have made homeless, in South Africa, Zimbabwe, and above all Mozambique.

'Non-government organisations': So-called 'independence' in the service of war

Last year, the humanitarian organisation ‘Medecins sans Frontiers’ (MSF) was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. Twenty years before, the illustrious pioneer of ‘non-governmental organisations’ (NGOs), Amnesty International, had already received this supreme distinction. When it hands out such rewards, the world bourgeoisie always recognises its most faithful servants, as can be seen from the long list of warmongers who have been converted into doves of peace, such as Begin and Sadat.

Hypocrisy over flood relief for Mozambique

Contrast this slow penny-pinching response with the rush to give ‘humanitarian assistance’ to the population of Kosovo last spring. Although the repression of the Kosovans had been going on for some time under the eyes of the great powers, it was not until NATO decided to intervene in the situation that billions were spent that billions were spent - on reducing Serbia’s infrastructure to rubble. The war in Kosovo created a humanitarian disaster, forcing hundreds of thousands of refugees to flee the NATO bombing and resulting offensive and ethnic cleansing by the Serbian army. When it comes to spending money on war the bourgeoisie has no problems at all.

The aberrations of "democratic" capitalism

Whether for or against "globalisation", whether reassuring or alarming, all the commentaries on the international situation and its perspectives are unanimous on one point: democracy is the only system which will allow society to progress and prosper, and capitalism is the final form of humanity's social, political, and economic organisation. "2000 was not really the first year of the 21st century. In substantive terms, the 21st century began in 1991 with the fall of Soviet communism, the collapse of the bipolar order and the rise of global capitalism as the uncontested ideology of our age" ("Ideas: No, Economics Isn't King", F. Zakaria, Newsweek Jan. 2001).


Subscribe to RSS - Environment