Left Call for Public Wealth, World Peace and Climate Justice
Declaration timed with conference on Crisis Capitalism in Brussels in October 2009.
Pittsburgh, Brussels, Copenhagen. The cycle of summits is becoming ever more regular in times of crisis. The various "governments" of the world are facing serious challenges -- whether it is the G20 trying to stabilise the core-shaken world financial system, the EU Council attempting to reinforce its role as global player, or the UN fighting imminent climate collapse.
From the perspective of the majority of the people the outcomes of crisis politics so far are next to nothing. Analysis of the systemic causes of finance meltdown, bloody conflicts, growing power of transnational corporations, exploitation of the South and global warming remains superficial, and measures taken to fight the crisis are insufficient. The UN Climate Conference seems likely to end in diluted targets and an even greater commodification of nature. The EU continues to work on profiting at the expense of others. And all the G20 are offering are undefined taxes on financial transactions, wishy-washy bank regulation and useless caps on managers bonuses.
Bubble economics are followed by bubble politics. "Change" is not in sight -- instead we have restoration of neoliberal hegemony and the logic of crisis-capitalism. With a pinch of social democratic, neo-keynesian arrangements and a lot of smoke and mirrors they are about to rescue their project.
Let's briefly recall the "achievements" of about 40 years of neoliberalism:
- Private wealth has exploded since 1980 fourteenfold. The rich and super-rich own four times the value of the annual production of goods and services worldwide. Their demands for ever more profit drive the real production beyond any limit -- to gain two percent profit they force global labour to provide a growth of GDP by eight percent.
- Military expenditures have increased by almost 50 percent since 1999 -- despite a decline in major armed conflicts. One out of 40 dollars is channeled worldwide into the production and testing of weapons and into waging wars. The US military budget has reached the highest level since World War II due to Afghanistan and Iraq.
- Use of energy has almost doubled since 1980. Emission of greenhouse gases has increased by 40 percent within 20 years. Global use of raw material is expected to reach 80 billion tons in the year 2020 -- almost 60 percent more than at the beginning of the century.
For our planet a policy of "business as usual" will be disastrous. Humankind will head inevitably to catastrophy and a collapse of civilization. In order to achieve wealth for all, world peace, and climate justice we strongly demand within the next ten years:
- 75 % less wealth in the private hands of rich and super-rich
- 75 % less expenditures for the military
- 75 % less use of energy and resources as well as emissions.
Stop Bubble Politics, break the logic of the growth machine, resist the restoration of neoliberal power. Downsize crisis-capitalism immediately.