a Brief Look at Recent History

Today, the two looming “existential threats” are the possibility of nuclear war, and unprecedented human-caused climate change, yet neither of these seems to unduly concern our plutocrats. Capitalism thrives on war, and we forget this historical fact at our peril. Nor do they seem worried about the drastic consequences of global warming, which has been denied, ignored, or downplayed in the corporate media. In fact, it may appear that the big business oligarchs who run the US and dictate policy to a large part of the rest of the world fear very little, perhaps least of all the world’s working classes. These people suffer most from capitalism: they die in large numbers in imperialist wars and are chronically victimized by unemployment and economic crises. They are (and will continue to be) the main victims of capitalist-caused climate change.

The world’s workers have the greatest incentive, and also a long history, of fighting back against oppression. The potential (and, historically, the actual) organized power of workers is what rulers have feared and fear today; in spite of the enormous apparent difficulties in bringing this power to bear, it represents the only possibility of countering big capital. Organized workers cut into profits at home and abroad and at times have represented a revolutionary threat to corporate power. They can disrupt ruling class expansionary plans, up to and including imperialist wars. Thus, big capital fights wars on several fronts…

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