How Capitalism Stokes the Far Right and Climate Catastrophe

How Capitalism Stokes the Far Right and Climate Catastrophe, by Mark Bray.

Here is an article from the far left, with some interesting insights into how some of them are thinking. The author is a newly minted product of western education at a leading US university — an historian of human rights, terrorism, and political radicalism in Modern Europe, who completed his PhD in Modern European and Women’s and Gender History at Rutgers University in 2016.

We are living in ominous times. Every week something new: white supremacist murders in Kentucky and Pittsburgh; the continued rise of the far right in Europe; Trump’s attack on transgender rights; the election of aspiring tyrant Jair Bolsonaro to the Brazilian presidency; the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report that climate catastrophe is likely only about 20 years away. What’s next? …

Crucial to answering these questions is understanding how the rise of the far right and the imminence of climate catastrophe are related threats. Most obviously the far right promotes policies and perspectives that destroy the planet. Currently, the Trump administration is working hard to repeal Obama’s environmental protection policies. …

More fundamentally, fascist and far right forces promote notions of ultra-nationalism and xenophobia that block the essential task of putting the interests of the planet and all of its inhabitants over those of any single group. Nationalism has fueled not only opposition to the European Union but also a rejection of the Paris Agreement and widespread climate denial among European far right parties like UKIP, Front National and the Sweden Democrats. The threat of the climate catastrophe is far more imminent and egregious in the global south, and white supremacy clearly discourages caring about most of the world. There are “ecofascists” who coopt the concept of bio-regionalism to advance their genocidal politics, but their views do not have significant sway in actual far-right policy and their “environmental” solution is not worthy of reasoned engagement. …

We must recognize that the climate crisis and the resurgence of the far right are two of the most acute symptoms of our failure to abolish capitalism.

In a context of economic anxiety, Hillary Clinton’s promise to “put a lot of coal miners” out of work — even if it was in the interest of saving the planet — played into the ability of the far right to generate support for Trump by taking advantage of the antagonism between working class livelihood and ecological sustainability that capitalism fosters. …

Centrist discourse has abstracted white supremacy and anti-Semitism into “hate,” depoliticized fascism and antifascism by caricaturizing them as mirror images of “extremism,” and ignored what should be one of the most important news stories: the fairly imminent destruction of the planet. …

Debates about reformism vs. revolutionism have waged for generations on the left. But now we are on a deadline. Lesser-evilism among capitalist politicians may have some rationale when spending five minutes casting a ballot on Election Day, but we don’t have time for it to be a guiding strategical outlook. We need to organize movements to build popular power and shut down the industries that threaten our existence.

Fascism is ascendant. The world is on fire. This is no time to be patient. If we don’t abolish capitalism, capitalism will abolish us.

A bracing dose of PC unreality.

A call to arms by the willingly deluded — one suspects other psychological influences at play.

We’re doing it for the planet! Think of the children!

The carbon dioxide theory of global warming is a vehicle for several political agendas. Here it is being used to justify political violence and usurping democracy by the far left. Amazing what weight is hanging on a modelling error from the 1960s.

Due diligence anyone?

hat-tip Charles, via Eric Worrall