Global capitalism is in trouble. The relentless drive to grow and accumulate in a planet with limited resources and limited ability for renewal in the face of continuous massive assault by toxins and pollution has reached its limits.

We are facing a crisis of incredible proportions as yet unrecognized by the entrenched powers. The capitalist system is now unable to reproduce in the same way it has done in the past. The pandemic drives home this fact.

Workers who are the producers of all goods and services and all the surplus that had been appropriated by the capitalists as profits are unable to reproduce themselves as the next generation of workers. Our living standards are abysmal. Housing, health care, food, education, employment and everything that makes for a healthy labor force are all gutted in the mad rush by the few at the top to take as much as possible while they are able to.

Humanity is facing an existential crisis as the system discards us as so much trash. Look at the global numbers of homeless, the unemployed, the starving, the sick, the maimed, the dead, the suicides, the addicted, the incarcerated and those fleeing endless wars.

The despoliation of nature has reached its structural limits. Nature can no longer renew itself at the rate it had been poisoned. Nature is a source of great wealth and with workers enabled the meteoric rise of capitalism globally. But capital only regarded nature as free and behaved irresponsibly, privatizing public lands, forests, rivers and mined resources for its own use.

We are living in the barbaric stage of capitalism. In my mind, barbarism began with the first use of the atomic bomb on helpless millions in Nagasaki and Hiroshima. “Capital comes dripping from head to foot, from every pore, with blood and dirt” expressed perfectly in the expansion to the American West, grabbing native lands, displacing by massacring the local population, infecting them with smallpox and other European diseases.

But it takes the turn to the Nuclear Age to truly see the barbarism of capital, which penalizes civilians in their hegemonic wars.

The revolutionary socialist Rosa Luxemburg declared “Socialism or Barbarism” as she watched in horror the First World War, an inter-imperialist war for land and resources. With the invention of the A-bomb, Einstein prophesied that unless we change, the next global war will be the annihilation of the human race.

Dr. Kim E. Koo

Rocky Mount