The System of Capitalism Pt. 1

The capitalistic economic model preferred by the United States and adopted internationally (even by strict socialist republics to a degree) is a system that is amoral; meaning that it does not concern itself with needs, the real tangible needs of people. Capitalism thrives on antagonisms and divisions; all in the name of increasing revenue. Needs are an afterthought to growth and profit. It is innate that in these type of economic societies, the man, the woman, and the child are akin to currency. The people are a commodity. Humanity, with all of its uniqueness, talents, personalities, desires, creativity, development and dreams, is not viewed through this prism or judged by such. Rather, these qualities are undervalued and only become valuable in regards to the generation of capital and profits that can be produced from them. Talent or ability are not the prime considerations, only the end result is. The same can be said of people, as their welfare is of no concern; it is how much profit they can contribute to the economy. The system will take care of you insomuch as you take care of the system. While there exists no judgements of right or wrong, the system of morals and ethics are skewed, as an impoverished good person who harms none would be considered a failure while a wealthy person who harms many in the pursuit and maintenance of wealth would be considered successful. Thus it seemingly does create it own system of ethics, as distorted as it is.

How much profit can be created from the people, while giving them little to noting in return, at least in contrast to what is created? This relationship can be observed in a consumer to seller or employer to employee dynamic. In the realm of employment, the worker is maximized for results and profit, and without a doubt, the profit that the worker makes for their company is greater than the salary and benefits (if they do receive any such benefits) the said worker receives, many times over. They are not compensated according to their real worth. Instead, their salary is driven as low as possible, just barely enough to remain competitive. The masses, who are the buyers, are in a never ending cycle of purchase. The products of purchase offer a type of positive experience, which has convinced the buyer of ownership. The product may change, but the promise remains constant; your life will improve if you just purchase the respective product. And the more, the better. This is where the deception of capitalism comes into play.

As long as the the people are immersed in this relationship with consumerism, they will remain sedated by product and material. As long as the mind is occupied by luxury cars, designer clothing, and electronic toys, it worries not about matters, important external matters such as injustice and abuse, or deeply internal matters such as spirituality. This is the personification of turning a blind eye. As long as the people have their material wants and needs satisfied, life is good. Even if these material wants and needs amount to mere crumbs from the proverbial table, it matters not. Thus the creation of the selfish man and woman.

The focus on the individual is paramount in this system. We are bombarded with messages imploring us to spend capital and live well beyond our means. We are urged forward with empty slogans meant to appeal to our sense of self entitlement, such as “It is your right,” and “you deserve it,” for example. This focus is strictly on the individual and not what is best for the community on the whole because the individual can maximize profits, unlike communal needs, which is not profit driven, and if it’s not profit driven it’s utterly useless. The self, which is indeed the focus, is placed on the scale of market value and transaction. 

People are reduced to an equation in transaction. What I mean is this – you need A + B to make AB. Now apply this equation to your average purchase. You have Consumer A with capital. You have Seller B with product. To make AB they both have to combine and the common denominator is capital. So if Customer A has no capital or insufficient amounts of it, as in mathematics, the equation is incomplete. The individual is a “cash cow,” and just like an animal waiting to be slaughtered, you are kept alive, barely, for the purpose of maximum exploitation, and when there is no more that can be taken, you become useless to society and are rendered disposable.

A New Kind of Guerrilla 

“Today to be ‘violent’ or a ‘terrorist’ is a quality that ennobles any honorable person, because it is an act worthy of a revolutionary engaged in armed struggle against the shameful military dictatorship and its atrocities.”  
These words were written by Carlos Marighella in his Mini-Manual of the Urban Guerrilla. Marighella was killed in 1969. The West German guerrilla group Red Army Faction, after years of armed struggle, proclaimed in 1998, “The urban guerrilla in the shape of the RAF is now history.” I conjure up these examples of Marighella and the RAF to make a point: I think as times and conditions have changed, we are in need of a new kind of guerrilla. The term “guerrilla” is usually associated, again as in the aforementioned examples, with guerrilla warfare, or armed struggle. But being a “guerrilla” doesn’t necessitate one who immediately goes to the gun as the definition of the word implies: 
“referring to actions or activities performed in an impromptu way, often without authorization.”

Currently, there are still armed guerrilla movements active across the world, such as the FARC in Colombia or the Naxalite insurgency in India. These groups are engaged in a deadlock with their respective governments. As mentioned earlier, the RAF decided to change their methodology and admit that they had to go beyond their previously dogmatic perspectives. Yes truthfully some situations will create armed conflict not for the sake of but just as a natural consequence to the situation such as African colonialism. Those armed conflicts, according to Dr. Frantz Fanon, has as much to do with the human empowerment of the colonized as it did with armed conflict, but that can be discussed elsewhere. In these modern times being a guerrilla has expanded far beyond the armed front. In this day and age of the Internet and technology, there are new guerrillas fighting the same campaigns as the guerrillas of old. The weapons have changed and so have the fronts. The weapons are creativity and the fronts are the minds of people. These new guerrillas do not use guns and artillery, but use the pen, art, music, speech, subversion, civil resistance and technology. It can be something as simple as downloading a movie, which siphons power away from the film industry conglomerates, you are engaging in guerrilla action. When you upload videos on the net exposing the ways of the superstructure, you are a engaging in guerrilla action. When you use art for resistance and protest, you are an art guerrilla, engaging in guerrilla action. When you teach a spirituality apart from the established, organized religion, you’re a spiritual guerrilla, engaging in guerrilla action. I’m sure you understand. Anyone can be a guerrilla in their own way and engage in guerrilla activity. And no matter how seemingly small or innocuous the action is, it is not as your actions are not isolated; all of these small acts from so many different places compound and form a collevtive guerrilla action. When they are coalesced, collevtive guerrilla action has the power to knock down the walls of the mind and heart as well as the walls that are built on the outside.

The Construct of Alienation 

The average American worker is by far and large an alienated being. Even if the trappings are different, those with wealth can even be categorized as such. They are not exempt. And by far and large we don’t know who we are and what we are, we think we do but we don’t – take our established roles away from us and what remains? We are nothing. Strip us of our jobs, possessions, money, spouses, children and what is left of us? When our “roles”‘are abolished and we are left with just ourselves, we are lost, because we live for these roles. So in essence, when someone states that they know themselves, they are usually referring to the role they are acting out in society. But due to alienation this false self is often construed as the real self, and it is construed as such because there exists no other alternative to contrast to the supposed “real” self. This self that is believed to be real has been carefully manufactured since birth and bestowed upon us in the form of a “role,” which also is carefully manufactured. This is the very definition of alienation. Our true nature, a spiritual nature, is not compatible with the precepts of capitalism, which is anti-spiritual. Capitalism is comprised of things of this world, not the spirit. Thus we are shaped into molds that go against our true nature, which creates, and is one of the reasons, for the aforementioned alienation. A system that is constructed on exploiting the very worst qualities in us for its stable operation is, to say the least, not healthy nor conducive in bringing our true nature to the surface. It constantly has us in the worst state possible, as far away from ourselves as possible. Essentially it thrives on our alienation. Since everything is interrelated, it feeds into other constructs of society, one being religion. Religion, like its kin politics, is one of the major societal constructs in existence. Due to alienation one is led to religion. An alienated individual easily lapses into religion, as the purpose of this is to dispel the alienation and in exchange, obtain some kind of meaning to oneself. This process, in more known religious parlance, is the “I was lost but now I’m found,” paradigm. But with religion mainly being a societal construct, it does not provide a cure for this alienation. Rather it works to reinforce it, as for example, the Christian church in America is usually aligned with the state. As it is in agreement with the core principles of the state, it does very little to espouse upon one’s relation, spiritually, mentally and physically, to the state. This is due to a religious ignorance, as the church is quite content to contain itself to religious dogma, and if not religious then political. What then is the result? The result is a thoroughly confused individual, who has the belief of self awareness, but in reality their true selves have just been buried under mounds of religious dogma. It is just another false construct built by another state apparatus. The same can be applied to the political apparatus as well. As the tools of the system can and will be used against it to destroy it, the church, and religion in general is useful in this sense indeed. As for many, it is their first foray with the spiritual dimension. But the mistake is made when religion is taken as the whole, when it is really a hint, a mere shadow of the whole. To graduate form this construct, one has to be thoroughly deconstructed and restored (death and resurrection), which is a process undertaken during personal analysis. For the alienated whom seek more, it is an incredibly task to fall into this religious construct, and it is an even easier task to stay within it, believing themselves to no longer be alienated. But they are still alienated, just as much if they were not involved in religion. They are still alienated. They are still lost.

Our Urge

Humans cannot help but worship. We always end up worshipping, and we always end up worshipping the wrong things. This almost biological inclination can be highly dangerous when it’s misused, when it’s not connected to the grand purpose of this inclination. When it is not connected to the right source, a vacuum develops within the individual. In this vacuum, we get the worship of rituals, statues, books, systems, people, religion, and politics, among others. From this vacuum springs forth cults of personality, and religious and political zealotry. All misplaced passion, all misplaced emotions, misplaced devotion and misplaced connection. Things and persons that were never intended to be worshipped end up becoming gods or close to it, in the minds and hearts of humanity. This is not meant to discredit learning from others, examples, role modeling and admiration, but there is a clear delineation between such and deification. Oftentimes, the lines between the two are indistinguishable and blurred. We (humans) have the proclivity to not only deify items and people, but we (humans) create entire philosophies, doctrines, ideologies, rituals and varying modes of worship, which revolves around these items and people, deified of course. And if these already exist and are in place, we (humans) exhibit the tendency to just follow along. And we become spiritually poorer as a result. This urge, as powerful as the most basic human urges, cannot be suppressed, repressed, oppressed or eradicated. One might as well eradicate our physiological needs, such as hunger and breathing. But this urging, this longing for profound connection, is not the actual troublesome issue at hand, no matter how many have attempted to portray it as such. Just like one can be reckless and impulsive with our most basic physiological needs, the same applies to our spiritual selves, our spiritual needs. Our (humans) impulsiveness combined with the abundance of distractions lead us to place our spiritual selves and trust in all of the wrong things. Oftentimes we just do not know where or what to place this worship urge into, as so much fights for our undivided attention. So we pick what is most convenient, or what is most available, thus books of wisdom and mythology become holy books, teachers and seers become gods on earth, politics becomes religion and vice versa. This urge will not vanish. This urge needs a destination. The question remains though, what is your destination?

Global Consciousness

As humanity hopes to evolve, a new mind needs to develop within; a new consciousness, if we are to grow and survive as a species. The United States has waged continuous war on the battlefield of the mind, that is, they have reduced the people into something almost unrecognizable, to others and most importantly to themselves. And in this war, the U.S has employed weapons that are just as powerful as bullets, shells and artillery. This weapon has been utilized in the past to conquer nations abroad – this weapon is known as “product.” “Product” is almost as potent as the newest weapons of warfare developed by the government. It is the preferable weapon of choice for the United States because a single drop of American blood has not touched the ground in its usage. “Product” is also known by its other name “westernization.” This process has leveled nations, destroyed cultures, eradicated languages and has stolen the very identity of masses of people internationally, once proud. Victims have fallen before the vicious blasts of “westernization” and after the smoke has cleared all that remains are corpses, eyes surrounded by dried tears and mouths opened in wonderment before the golden standard of America. And here on the domestic front, civil war rages on as the government of capital wages its dirty war against the populace using its own weapons of mass destruction (television, media, etc.). Unfortunately, the casualties are mounting and many have been slain. Product has claimed many bodies. We are a once living people whose lives now center on accumulation. Like mice in a maze, the masses are in an imaginary competition with their fellow man, to consume as much as possible and then to horde more than others, thus, a false confidence is created. The rat race, as it is called, is the engineering of the capitalist economy and is the gears, pistons and transmission that enable the capital to continue to flow. Even the impoverished, those who lack, are embroiled in this rat race. It is a win/win situation for the bourgeoisie U.S and the capitalistic corporations that this government is indebted too; those in power get richer and the rest, the others, become sedated. That is why the government is able to get away with, literally murder, and escape due punishment. And yet the same standard is not extended to the people. If we of the people committed a fraction of what this government does wholesale, we would be sent to the lethal injection chamber without mercy. The national economy is volatile, food prices are rising, the price of living is inflated beyond control and salaries and wages are non-competitive. A people whom exist in the vicious cycle become alienated, as mentioned previously, and an alienated people do not have the ability to be concerned with their neighbor, domestic or international. A people without knowledge are a doomed people. Consciousness is true knowledge. Revolutions of change cannot manifest if the participants do not have this type of mind. This is the mind of “the new man and woman,” as Che Guevara described it. If the people develop consciousness en masse, it cannot help but be felt and experienced. A people without true consciousness are powerless, without will and without understanding. The fact that the government acts with complete impunity displays the fact that this consciousness has not yet risen. When the global conscious mind arises out of the depths, unjust governments and systems everywhere will truly be held accountable. The globally conscious mind, united, on a micro and macro level, is the definition of true power, but it begins with one.

New Age Fundementalism 

Fundamentalism is not the exclusive domain of one sect or ideology, political, religious or otherwise. When we think of fundamentalism we usually think Christianity, at least in the Western perspective, which is something that we need to be mindful of. Essentially, fundamentalism of any kind is a movement of purity, a returning to the roots. But fundamentalism at its core is a reaction to an ever modernizing culture that is rendering the fundamentalist irrelevant. So a militant, antagonistic hostility ensues against the modernizing culture to preserve and maintain sanctity, to feel relevant, which is largely the case with Christian fundamentalism. But fundamentalism is also control. This caustic preservation of sanctity exhibits itself in a manic control, which extends even to their “god.” The last thing a fundamentalist wants to feel is a loss of control, as even “god” falls under the rigid purview of the fundamentalist. “God” is contained by man’s hands and subject to their whims like a magical genie. You pray harder, “god” will respond. If you don’t, “god” will not. If you just obey a little more, “god” will react. If you fail to obey in the least, “god” will not. Do you not see the manipulation? This is man manipulating “god” for their own benefits and whims. This foolishness is the foolishness of a child because that’s the naiveté of a child and fundamentalism requires a child like nature. Now I say all of this to make a point about the “New Age.” The “New Age” prides itself on being a viable alternative to the more traditional western Christianity. The New Age views itself as the opposite of a fundamentalist Christianity, and in some ways, in dogma and ideology, it is. But in many ways, it shares things in common with fundamentalist Christianity, namely in mentality. The New Age, in many ways, is just as fundamentalist. What the Christians do not get, is that “god” the energy cannot be contained, but the New Age seeks to control this uncontrollable energy for its own gains. Like the fundamentalist Christian who prays harder and harder to make “god” react, there is the New Ager, who will meditate harder, chant more, for the purpose of getting this “god” energy to react and give them their rightly earned “enlightenment.” Again, this is man’s attempt to manipulate and control the uncontrollable energy that is “god” for their ultimate end, as if one can bend the will of this energy by repeating the right words, taking the right postures or thinking the right thoughts. But whatever name it masquerades under, it is all man’s ego and control, again at the forefront.  

Addiction and the Superstructure 

Addiction is a type of invisible slavery. Addiction is bondage without the chains. But, in this day and age, in this culture and society, it is understandable, from a rational and scientific perspective, why addiction of any kind exists. Perhaps, from the rational perspective (which may seem irrational at onset), it is the way for the normal human creature, a creature of habit, a creature which lives in the repetitive routine that is put upon him by the society of capital, to transcend it, to escape it; to do and be something different. The superstructure and its agents seek to disempower the individual in society. The individual, in relation to society, is made to feel powerless, as they are under constant pressure and scrutiny. Addiction is transformational. It brings relief or the power of sheer abandon. Indeed you are changed, if for a moment; there are no rules, no oppression, no struggling, no suffering and all that exists is the moment as you are in the moment. In the midst of it, all worries and concerns easily evaporate. The individual is searching intently for the way out, a new path to tread and that path is not found in the bare, stoic, uncaring walls of our office. Or in our cubicles, our desks, our paperwork, our tools and in the hands and feet that ache with pain from one day’s labor just to survive are those that want to experience more; those of us who that do not want the cycle of repetition that this system has to offer. It is a skewed rejection of the present reality. But what of the conditions that create the environment to encourage such behavior? The answer lies in an examination of the superstructure.
As stated previously, when one analyzes the superstructure, society can be equated to a type of human black hole, where as you are born into it and no matter how hard you fight you just cannot break the barrier and escape. And just like the theoretical black hole, whatever force you exert to escape will just further entrap you. The black hole is the pursuit of the so called “American Dream.” This pursuit, for many, unfortunately ends in the reality of their job, the mortgage that is owed and cannot be paid, and the check at the end of the week that wards off homelessness for at least another two weeks. The misery that befalls the faces of people ready to start the work day is very telling of the dehumanization process that renders us into mere cogs in the wheel of economic circularity. And imagine resigning your life, for the next fifty plus years, if you are fortunate, to this economic imprisonment. Liberation is the natural tilt of the heart. When you are offered liberation from this culture of the superstructure, even if it’s not a real or factual liberation, you become desperate for the opportunity and reach out for dear life. Yes, addiction is physiological and psychological, but addiction is a skewed liberation, thus it is difficult to overcome because of what it represents – liberation. The pharmaceutical industry is booming, the illegal drug trade is booming, in addition to the legal drug trade (alcohol, nicotine). To the individual, using substances is in a sense a rejection and a transcendence of the material, consumerist society. But while the individual may believe this, the superstructure has its own agenda, which is to perpetuate the drugged up society. The superstructure allows the individual user to believe themselves free, especially in the throes of using, but they are not, it is a vicious delusion. Addiction is a cooperation and collaboration between the individual and the state, with the individual not conscious of the role their addiction plays in the superstructure. You see the superstructure not only encourages and fosters addiction it benefits from it as well, as a drugged up society is a compliant society and a prolonged life (thanks to modern medicine legal drugs) is a life to further exploit.