The Collapse of Capitalism Continues Apace, While Caribbean Elites Dither

The Collapse of Capitalism Continues Apace, While Caribbean Elites Dither

Freundel Stuart
Prime Minister Barbados

By Pachamama 

Kennedy Anthony
Prime Minister St. Lucia

“Complex societies collapse by continuing to do the same kinds of things that cause that collapse”. Derrick Jensen – Philosopher. 
“The mass cling to its masters, loves the whip, and is the first to cry ‘crucify’.” Emma Goldman – Anarchist, Political Philosopher, Social Activist.    

Recent comments by the Prime Minister of Barbados Fruendel Stuart (FJS) in relation to the perilous state of the world economy come mere months after similar remarks by the Prime Minister of Saint Lucia. Both maximum leaders rightly located the problems of their countries outside of their respective spheres of influence, even spheres of control. More precisely, Kenny Anthony told us that Caribbean countries were on the brink of collapse while Stuart went straight to the crux of the matter in stating, clearly, that no minister of finance, in the world, knows what he/she is doing. What a profound statement! And in this, he is absolutely correct! 

While we have had occasions to publicly indict FJS for governmental malpractice of the highest order, at this time, we are indeed happy to see that what we have been saying for more than ten years is now just starting to be mouthed by the backward political elites in the Caribbean. This time we hold out no expectation that the clock to disaster will stop for one moment. We do not expect that there will be any vigorous debate about an alternative political-economy model. We do not expect, that for one moment, the regular cut and thrust of the petty adversarial politics in the Caribbean will cease to bring a wider understanding to the words of these two prime ministers. Words that are pregnant with meanings. 

Instead we would, this time, expect the commentariat and scribes, here and elsewhere, to deliberately ignore the gravamen of this historical moment and press for the continuance of a politics of trivia. Not even the titanic collapse of capitalism could distract the party loyalists, on both sides and around the edges, from an irrational, binary, predilection. These scribes always fail to connect the political to the economy at the higher levels. The levels of invisibility where it matters most. For they are too wrapped up in the marketing of nonsense. A nonsense deliberately intended to distract from the central issues. For the commentariat will never connect the failure of the economy to the grotesque disparities in the distribution of wealth and the growing tendencies to exacerbate these distortions. And they may be thinking that they are doing the likes of Bizzy Williams, Kiffin Simpson, COW Williams and other petite elites a favour, but what they are really doing is failing to alert the elites that the serfs are arising and the protection they once had will not hold. The centre can no longer hold. This is an issue that has recently come to the fore in China. 

In the past decades the number of billionaires in China have gone from six (6) to sixty-one (61). So, on the one hand, we have a political system that, for all intents and purposes, is a communist system. At the economic level however, gross distortions in the distribution of incomes and wealth have long appeared therefore forcing the Chinese Government to export people to the Caribbean and elsewhere, for many reasons. These are to include relieving the massive pressures of growing demands of a once galloping new middle class. Even though Chinese investment capital has started to influence Caribbean politics more than could have been expected, at home, the Bank of China has recently decided to institute curbs on the foreign currency exchange market for reasons inexplicable to most China financial watchers. This is merely the most recent sign of a slowing of the 7-plus percentage rates of ‘growth’ for more than a decade. In the USA the signs of capitalism’s demise are no less obvious. 

When Bernanke came to the Federal Reserve (FED) its assets were 830 billion, now they are 4.1 trillion. This represents printed money ostensibly lent to commercial banks. The fed’s capital ratio was 3.22% now it is 1.34%. Bernanke found a DOW at 10,954 now it is 15,776 at this time on 1/30/2014, 80% of which is supported by high frequency trading, computers trading with computers. This fictitious expansion has been characterized by a contraction in the ownership of stocks with 10% of the population now owning up to 80% of stocks. The 10 year bond rate was, on Bernanke’s arrival, 4.5% now it is merely 2.65%. Readers will be well aware of the other indices of a generalized failure of the US economy and by extension the global economy about which this writer oftentimes opines. These economic failures when coupled with ecological and other systemic problems at least point in the direction of the collapse of capitalism but more importantly may signal a demise of humans. All these signs were visible for decades, and more, yet Caribbean elites neglected to properly inform their populations of a new world order that beckons. Thanks for nothing ‘the Bernanke”. 

The Stockholm syndrome which pervades the minds of Caribbean elites makes them pretend that they are part of the sophisticated communities of which Derrick Jensen spoke. Such a mindset consigns us to the fate of others, solidifies the notion that we cannot avoid the issue of which Merrs Stuart and Anthony were courageous enough to speak about, on one hand. On the other, they provide fertile ground for the party hacks to see a singularity of failure instead of its generalized nature of the problems we face. And therefore, the anarchist- philosopher Emma Goldman is also right for the party pimps can only cling unto their ‘masters’, call for more licks from the whips of the elites and are the first to demand the crucifixion of any one who is a truth-teller. 

Pachamama  is a social commentator                               

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