How Capitalism is Making Us Sick: Part One

“The system has made us sick. Let us strike the death blow to the sick system.” -Sozialistisches Patientenkollektiv.

Capitalism is a system of sheer perversion and degeneration. It is merely a sickly and obese man, vomiting over the people he tramples upon making them sick, all the while claiming he is in perfect health. Where there is privatize ownership there is disease. Where there is wage labor there is disease. Capitalism has hurt us physically through obesity, drugs, and starvation, as well as mentally through harmful and false perceptions of reality and freedom. Therefore the socialists arise to put the old bastard Capitalism out of his misery and to end his long tyrannical reign over the people who he has made sick; the socialists are healers of diseases such as imperialism, exploitation, alienation, and all the despicable rancor the Capitalist has spread.

Capitalistic diseases began spreading early on in history. One of the most significant examples is the genocide and suppression of the Native Americans through European expansionism. Europeans forcefully took land to suit their own interests, and behaving like murderous beasts, they did not care who they destroyed in the process. Such behavior ultimately indicates mental instability; disease of sorts. Through European policy, not only were Natives forced from their land, but were often raped and murdered for further American development. Diseases such as smallpox were spread by European settlers and thousands died as a result. Historians estimate anywhere between 8 million and 112 million Natives died as a result of government policy; hugely more than the victims of the Holocaust. The Natives ultimately died to the “disease” of capitalism, and the European settlers were in what can only be described as poor mental health, often believing what they were doing was God’s will. Racism was extremely prevalent throughout American development as well, which of course meant the Natives were less than human to the divine Whites. European settlers brought thousands of slaves from Africa to exploit and suit their interests. The belief that Africans were to be treated as mere commodities and property was then continually reinforced by not only the growing bourgeoisie, but by the misguided people themselves. This belief, which is in itself a disease, results from capitalism, which inherently places emphasis on acquiring profit without regards to humaneness, and therefore leads whichever class or group has the upper-hand at a time to exploit the lower classes. The working class often remained divided against the black community and even today there is still division. Expansionism in order to spread “liberty” continued throughout American history particularly noticeable during the Manifest Destiny years. During this time the belief that God divinely willed Whites to expand their system of “freedom and liberty” further West caused massive removal of Natives, exploitation, xenophobia, racism, and the pathetic idealism capitalism often brings. In their poor mental health, people discriminated against one another in fear of competition for gold; for profit. The mind was often plagued not only by the belief that God willed expansionism, but that one could find wealth through acquiring gold, which as mentioned not only led to increased competition, but highly detrimental behavior. Today competition, consumerism, and herd-like behavior, flocking to an “American dream” still remains a highly detrimental symptom of disease in Western society as well. People therefore still continuously believe that capitalism is truly a “system of natural liberty,” exhibiting dogmatic sickness as well.

In further reference to Adam Smith’s notion of a perfect system, the illness’ caused by capitalism became more prevalent after Smith’s conceptions of a free market system were proved impossible throughout the 19th and 20th century. Monopolies became the dominant force in society and as a result economies crumbled. Numerous recessions, business cycles, banking crises, exploitations, and so forth were results of laissez-faire style America. In the 1890s numerous world production crises occurred, and in the 1930s there was the worldwide depression. Estimations as high as twelve million died from starvation in America alone, meanwhile the government retaining the stubborn belief that the system should merely work itself out, and that they should not intervene in matters no matter the situation. This stubborn, unrealistic dogmatism and pathetic appraisal of laissez-faire is an illness, and as shown led to extremely negative results. At this point when capitalism was clearly failing the people and creating sickness both metaphorically and literally, the government began to increase regulation and increase its intervention into the economy. The results proved positive, but nonetheless capitalism was stubbornly kept alive like a chicken with its head cut off; the actions taken by F.D.R. and the government of the era were merely to enable capitalism to save itself from being crushed under its own weight. Keynesianism and military spending then became primary ways of saving capitalism, leading to numerous wars throughout American history such as in Iraq and Panama. Nations have been decimated out of American action and then are offered contracts for rebuilding themselves by the very people who have destroyed them. In Afghanistan for example, the attempts of “nation building” are clearly failing and taking a turn in the wrong direction, billions of tax-payer money spent on acquiring spheres of influence rather than solving the issues. The people of Afghanistan continue to voice their complaints regarding the situation and yet this goes largely unheard of in the media. Western powers furthermore have divided the world into their own hands, spreading imperialism, globalization, and economic dependence upon themselves. This characterized itself early on in the 20th century and even showed in the World Wars. The result is that wealth and power are concentrated into the hands of few, and these few hold on to the belief that they truly deserve their wealth; the belief that anybody should retain wealth to such extent, the belief that economic structures should be privatized, the belief that people should be exploited via imperialism in whatever form it takes, are all the beliefs of those who are parasites hosting parasites; walking spreaders of disease themselves. Often times the people themselves support pro-bourgeois agenda under the influence of capitalist propaganda, and therefore contract the diseases of capitalism as well, supporting imperialistic conquest.

This brings us to the subject of media influence and their role in spreading disease in capitalist society. The media establishes its dominance over the people, and like a parasite feeds off their fears and emotions. While it often will expose truths, it waters these truths down in order to preserve the existing social order and to further keep bourgeois interests at heart. It then drowns the truth out in a sea of irrelevancy and triviality. The media bombards the people with messages of what is “in” and what is “out,” what to consume and even what is “important.” The result is ultimately a campaign of fear in which the people are fed images of war and starvation in foreign countries, then cut to commercial to buy the pimple solution cream or forever be a loser. The images of war become considered images of peace, as in 1984, constant warfare keeps the people sane and knowing a common enemy, distracted from their own exploiters. The bourgeoisie assert themselves as parasites into the human brain, controlling or at least influencing their thoughts to great extent, making them less concerned with the real issues and more dependent on purchasing trivial products or distracted by trivial gimmicks. Much like the societies envisioned in Brave New World or Feed, what should ultimately be considered triviality is importance, and ignorance becomes a well regarded feature of social status. Philistinism is then developed and art, education and culture become discarded, pushed aside for whatever reduces the need for thinking. The American slogan then becomes “Give me liberty and hamburgers, but just don’t make me have to think or fight for any of it,” and the people become ill with capitalism; they may even willingly allow themselves to be bought off with disease!

Now lets get a bit more literal in our reference to illness caused by capitalism. First, there is the matter of starvation. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations states that the world produces enough food to feed 12 billion people, double the current world population. And yet a person dies every second from hunger. 4000 people die every hour from hunger, amounting to 36 million people dead from starvation each year, or 100,000 each day. In fact 58% of all deaths result directly or indirectly from hunger or malnutrition. A child dies every 5 seconds from hunger: 700 per hour, 16,000 per day and a grand total of 6 million dead per year: 60% of all child deaths result from hunger. Of course when referencing these numbers, a capitalist will assert that Stalin caused famine, Mao caused famine, and only in Socialist countries have their been famines. These notions however, are absurd. The Ukrainian famine, being the prime reference made by capitalists, resulted from crop failure, not from “Stalinist genocide.” Russia and Ukraine had been known for their famines being a pre-modern, feudalistic state as well. The Soviets were trying to alleviate the famine, especially in Ukraine. First of all, what did Stalin stand to gain from wiping out the leading agricultural sector through hunger? The sources of “Ukrainian famine-genocide” are wildly inaccurate and extremely biased as well. The highest original figure of 10 million, provided by Richard Stallet, would make absolutely no sense considering at the time, the population of Ukraine was 25 million. Then came Robert Conquest who originally claimed 6 million died from starvation in his 1968 work, but then suddenly changed the number to 14 million during the Reagan years. Ironically, he himself since then stated the famine was not a genocide. In reality, less than the claimed figures died from the famine, and in the major cities there was still often enough food to survive as well. Health-care at this time had also improved under Stalin dramatically, and cases of diseases were abolished altogether. Again in reference to the Great Depression, on the other hand, if one attempts to use the methodology of the “scholars” who blamed Stalin or Mao for famine, we can just as well blame F.D.R. for the deaths during the Dust Bowl. There were millions dead as a result, and 25% malnutrition rate even in urban schools. Today where the gap in wealth has seen further increase, there are just as well many more people without food or with less food than the richest 20% of the world. As for obesity, the United States continually ranks number one on the charts. Capitalism can ultimately be described as a system in which one side of the world dies from obesity and the other dies from starvation, because capitalism itself develops unevenly. More than 30% of America is obese and this number continues to grow, not merely limited to adults but even children as well. This further reflects corporations abilities to convince the people their products must be bought, and regardless of the facts, they present their product in such a way that would convince the consumer to ignore the facts. Between 115 and 325,000 die from obesity each year alone. And as for drugs, anywhere from 2 to 5 million die per year worldwide from drug usage. 435,000 die in America from cigarette related death each year and 85,000 die each year in America from alcohol related death. Furthermore, as many as 86 million Americans go without health-care, and even with the recent “reforms” the numbers still remain on the high-side. In the former socialist states health-care was improved dramatically; Albania never once saw a case of syphilis for example and life expectancy rose from 32 to 76. Even in the European welfare and social-democratic states health-care is far better than American health-care, and just as well, murder rates are extremely low and “happiness rates” are extremely high; Denmark has been ranked as the happiest country in the world. Coincidence?

Now let’s take a look at the environment in capitalist countries as well. The environmental problems within this world are largely created due to capitalism, despite the claims from the two-Party system that environmental issues transcend political systems. While it is true that no system willingly wishes to create environmental problems, as we all benefit from the Earth, the problems that occur under capitalism do often reflect the inherent problems of the system itself more-so when compared to others. In regards to the environment, Engels stated: “As individual capitalists are engaged in production and exchange for the sake of immediate profit, only the nearest, most immediate results must first be taken into account…What cared the Spanish planters in Cuba, who burned down the forests on the slopes of the mountains and obtained from the ashes sufficient fertilizer for one generation of highly profitable coffee trees – what cared they that heavy tropical rainfall afterward washed away the unprotected upper stratum of soil, leaving behind only bare rock! In relation to nature, as to society, the present mode of production is predominantly concerned only about the immediate, most tangible result, and then surprise is expressed that the more remote effects of actions directed to this end turn out to be quite different, are mostly quite opposite in character.” In other words, decisions made by capitalists were merely done so to build ease and comfort and to feed their greed, the results being devastating upon the environment. Without a proper, planned economy there becomes less concern for environmental issues, and often times when concerns finally are raised, they are done so through ulterior motives, or are challenged as being merely items on the agenda of an opposing party. Quasi-scientists then spread lies and challenge mainstream science to sway opinion in their favor primarily to protect whichever Party is in their [corporations] best interest. Humans interact with the environment largely in relation to their mode of production; in capitalism this mode of production is unplanned, and even when regulations do occur they are not strong enough to stop disaster, which shows most noticeably in the recent oil spill and then further factors into even larger pictures such as global warming. Capitalistic development has led to myriads of environmental issues: Overfishing, wasted resources, climate change, and cities where the air is nearly un-breathable. In the ‘laissez-faire’ years of the 20th century, poor environmental policies and lack of regulations were literally making us sick as well. In the meat packaging industry for example, conditions were deplorable, as noted in the famous novel The Jungle. Aside from the poor working conditions and corruption of the industries, the meat itself was often diseased, contaminated, or never inspected properly because there was never any proper administration to have made sure this was done. The Jungle, having exposed the horrible truth, was written in 1906. That same year a meat inspection act and pure food and drug act was passed. It took 24 years however to finally create the Food and Drug Administration. Now, in some ways we should not be as harsh in judging the environmentally related issues of this time period, as there still was much to be learned. Even in the Soviet Union there were often periods of poor environmental records due to the rapid industrial development. But still, it wasn’t until the capitalistic post-Stalin leaders began putting the interests of liberal capitalism and profits before the people and the environment that it truly began to suffer. Although it wasn’t until the 60s that socialists began to more fully realize the relation of capitalism or socialism to the environment. In further reference to the Soviet Union, environmental policy was emphasized more often under Lenin as well. During the Stalin years, pseudo-biologists often took control of scientific development, but this had nothing to do with Communism, and Stalin would dismiss scientists deemed harmful to society (especially when their attempts at agricultural development failed). At any rate, today there still continues to be unwillingness to solve environmental issues and even with the major scientific proof, people still wish to dismiss it and continue living detrimental lifestyles. Through globalization and imperialism committed by the repressive world powers we shall continue to see environmental degradation within the capitalist system unless we act soon.

And what of culture and arts in the capitalist system? Are these things making us sick and degrading our existence as well? Yes, they are. While art did become more liberalized after the Renaissance, there still remains numerous elements of restriction and conformity within our art and culture. Again in reference to the media, they often determine what is considered “culture,” and the results prove to undermine the very meaning of true culture and true art. New and talented artistic work does not sell because the goal is profits, not true expressive freedom. Where there is talent it often becomes exploited and treated as a mere commodity. In some cases, media exploitation has even gone so far as to leading to the deaths of numerous individuals. The media presents a standard of art, culture, and most importantly beauty which then restricts our own visions and places emphasis on whatever the bourgeois deem suitable. Even in the recent age of technological advancement, what is our culture? Reality TV shows and commercialism? The standard for beauty becomes flawed and perverted; an output of bourgeois decadence. For example, big-breasted, white, blond haired woman are often seen as the standard of true beauty, and thus are often exploited to behave as whoreish beings. This merely shows the contradictory nature of our society, how on the one side we retain “Christian morality” but then go on to mass produce sex. Mediums such as Television could be used for more educational guidance and artistic achievement, but instead is used as distraction to further sicken our minds and paint unrealistic images of reality for us. False views of American life and the “American dream,” all in the efforts to sanitize the people’s minds and create willful consumers. It is this “sex appeal” that led numerous workers to the West from East Germany even when their culture was clearly superior to the West, having political parties dedicated specifically to artists. Today’s patrons of “art” are often multi-national millionaires such as Coca-Cola or the Hollywood “entertainment” industry who are in reality so out of touch with the true meaning of art and culture it’s unbearably painful. Art decays in capitalism, and as a result, we do too.

And in regards to education? In capitalism, the schools are often instruments of indoctrination. When the ideas of public schools were first introduced, they were done so based off of the Prussian education system. The Prussian system is based largely on mandatory behavior, and strict and often unnecessary guidelines. The results of our education system, influenced by the Prussian system, have proven to be a further cause of illness in our society. Students are often expected to behave more as robotic like beings rather than expressing themselves. In some instances, children have been so forced into their system that they had no choice in matters. For example, a school in Topeka required students to wear “Patriotic Halloween costumes,” not only reflecting the education systems flaws but the essence of patriotism and nationalism that are bred in capitalism. In Wisconsin, one school even forced students to attend a Bush rally. Should they present criticism to Bush they risked expulsion. Homophobia, another output of capitalism, has also found it’s way into our schools. Recently, there was the “lesbian prom” incident in which the LGBT and mentally disabled members of one school were sent to a fake prom location while the “normal” students went to the real prom; parents, teachers and even students supported the idea. Today, in California alone, more than 27% of students claim to experience harassment for their sexual identity as well. Homophobia is a disease of capitalism and the fact that it has manifested itself into our schools and even into our childrens minds is despicable. Furthermore, the schools obviously influence society, containing false and biased information, and wrong methods of teaching that may often create more harm than good. But even being puppets of the State doesn’t necessarily mean full State support. Schools continually have been cut from funding, and as a result children go without learning at all, some winding up as mere lumpenproletariat. There then becomes policy failure, lack of incentive for teachers to work, and an overall lack of a proper education system under capitalism. Rather than utilizing the eduction system to breed creativity, talent, and a more connected society, the capitalist education system is merely a tool for exploitation and for creating the ideal worker; the ideal commodity. Students behave in a competitive manner rather than in a cooperative one, and this becomes further reinforced through media-influence as well. Information is presented in a biased and potentially falsified manner; reactionaries claim that the schools are overrun with radical liberals but the reality is on the opposite corner, especially given the recent decision in Texas to shift text-books to a more “conservative” style. Repression is often wide-spread in numerous school communities, even from police who have been noted for unlawful drug searches or cursing at students. And even with the problems of capitalistic schools, as mentioned they still many not even receive proper funding. Meanwhile, our government can spend billions on war and increase debt to such ungodly levels. Should socialism be achieved the schools would not be run by bureaucrats, biased governments, or corrupt educators who are puppets to their system. Instead the schools would be dedicated to educating the people in not only the literal sense, but in what humanity is really about. The schools of socialist countries such as Albania and the Soviet Union established higher literacy rates, more universities, and the students went on to a life of success in the socialist system, without division among themselves in the workplace; they received education to gain a job they actually were suited for and enjoyed, unlike in capitalism where Taylorism dominates our labor force and creates lobotomized workers out of it’s victims.

In part two, we shall examine the ideology of capitalism itself, both in terms of it’s own specifics and it’s outputs and how they have effected society.

By Latuff

Victims of Genocide.
Ukrainian Genocide Myth.
The Necessity of Stalin.
The State of Food in the World.
The Right to Food.
Drug facts in the US.
Obesity in the US.
Denmark.
Eco-Socialism.
Did Mao Really Kill Millions?
Albania.
Enver Hoxha.
BP Oil Spill.
Capitalism and the BP Oil Spill.
Marxism and the Environment.
The Jungle.
Marxism and Natural Science.
Soviet Scientists.
Capitalist Fetishism and the Decay of Art.
Art and the Class Struggle.
Prussian Education System.
Education.
Obama Cuts Education.
Taylorism.
Alienation.

“1.02 billion people do not have enough to eat – more than the populations of USA, Canada and the European Union;

In a 1970 UN Resolution, most industrialised nations committed themselves to tackling global poverty by spending 0.7 percent of their national incomes on international aid by 1975.The largest donors were the United States (US$24 billion), Japan (US$18 billion), the United Kingdom (US$13 billion), Germany and France
Only Norway, Sweden, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Denmark regularly meet his target

Recent US spending on war $944 billion

$706 billion for Iraq (69%);
$300 billion for Afghanistan (28%);
$29 billion for enhanced security (3%); and
$5 billion unallocated DOD costs (1%).”

~By Glowstick and The Necromancer.

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3 Responses to How Capitalism is Making Us Sick: Part One

  1. Pingback: Beat Alcoholism 101

    • We are most pleased to present such works to you and the rest of the public. We also give our sincere thanks for adding a Trackback to your blog, as this helps spread our message and build solidarity.

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  2. Pingback: How Capitalism is Making Us Sick: Part Two | Red Star Vanguard

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