Richard Moore

Dear friends,

Here is the promised conclusion to my draft article.  Again
thanks to all of you who have been collaborating in this
effort by your feedback and critiques.  Feedback is invited
on all that is presented here, including the title, section
headings, section 4, and the Epilogue.



                                AND THE
                         REVOLUTIONARY IMPERATIVE
                            from Global Tyranny
                        to Democratic Renaissance

          Copyright (C) 1999 Richard K. Moore, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

                Intended for: Socialist Review Journal
                  Comments to: •••@••.•••

Table of Contents

Prolog: The crisis of globalization

1. Pax Americana and the postwar corporate regime
2. The neoliberal revolution & The Crisis of Democracy
3. The New World Order & The Clash of Civilizations
4. The revolutionary imperative

Epilogue: Achieving a livable and peaceful world





The course of world events, for the first time in history,
is now largely controlled by a centralized global regime.
This regime has been consolidating its power ever since
World War II and is now formalizing that power into a
collection of centralized institutions and a new system of
international "order".  Top Western political leaders
are participants in this global regime, and the strong
Western nation state is rapidly being dismantled and
destabilized. The global regime serves elite corporate
interests exclusively.  It has no particular regard for
human rights, democracy, human welfare, or the health of the
environment. The only god of this regime is the god of
wealth accumulation.

From the beginning, this evolving regime has employed
dual-agenda propaganda.  For each elite initiative
there has been a public cover story which makes that
initiative seem palatable to public opinion.  There has been
a public reality and a hidden reality.  In public reality
the UN was to be the instrument of peaceful international
collaboration.  In fact the postwar era has been dominated
by US interventionism in support of international capital.
In public reality the Reagan-Thatcher revolution was about
increasing freedom.  In fact neoliberalism was about
transferring power to corporations and dismantling
democracy.  In public reality humanitarianism has been
the motivation for the recent acceleration in Western
interventions.  In fact the global regime has been
establishing - in the public mind - the "legitimacy" of its
new world order.

In Section 1, THE CRISIS OF GLOBALIZATION, the following
observation was offered:

    A once functional ideology has now become dysfunctional and
    yet it remains globally dominant. This is humanity's mental
    disconnect; this is our collective insanity - our
    dysfunctional, out-of-date growth ideology.

But in fact is not humanity - in any democratic sense -
which has a "mental disconnect".  It is not humanity that
directs the course of world events.  It is not humanity that
decides to give top priority to unrestrained growth.  And
yet humanity, in a general sense, IS ACQUIESCING to this state of
affairs.  It is acquiescing not out of informed choice, but
out of a diet of disinformation and a lack of perceived

In two centuries the Western world has come full circle from
tyranny to tyranny.  The tyranny of monarchs was
overthrown in the Enlightenment and semi-democratic
republics were established.   Two centuries later those
republics are being destabilized and a new tyranny is
assuming power - a global tyranny of anonymous corporate
elites. This anonymous regime has no qualms about
creating poverty, destroying nations, and engaging in

Humanity can do better than this - much better - and there
is reason to hope that the time is ripe for humanity to
bring about revolutionary changes.  For the past two hundred
years capitalism has employed a sound formula to maintain
its stranglehold over the world.  That formula has been
based on the relative prosperity of Western populations.
Popular support maintained Western regimes and those regimes
had the military might to dominate the rest of the world.
That formula reached its culmination in the postwar years
when Western prosperity reached unprecedented heights.

With neoliberalism and globalization, this formula has been
replaced by another.  Western populations and democracy have
been abandoned and capitalism has bet its future on the
success of its WTO new-world-order tyrannical system. In a
few years this regime may be so thoroughly established that
it will be invincible.  But in the meantime - if Western
populations wake up to the fact that they are being betrayed
- they have the opportunity to rise up and assert the
democratic sovereignty which they in theory yet possess.

The fact is that we - the world's people - have no choice
about revolution.  Either we bring about a revolution that
benefits humanity or else we submit ourselves to the
elite-sponsored revolution in whose midst we now find
ourselves.  Our choice is between revolutionary democracy or
revolutionary tyranny. This is the REVOLUTIONARY IMPERATIVE.



The capitalist system cannot be reformed. Our elite rulers
did not lead us into tyranny and environmental collapse
because they are evil people, but because they were forced
to by the nature of capitalism.  Capitalism must continually
grow in order to survive. If investors have nowhere to
increase their funds then they stop investing and the whole
system collapses like a house of cards.  The history of the
past two centuries can be understood as a process of
creating new growth vehicles as required by the capitalist

Imperialism provided immense room for capital growth and
enough wealth was generated to be shared with Western
populations.  This process continued up until the late
1960s.  At that point growth through external expansion
began to slow down.  Neoliberalism permitted growth to
continue by consuming the nest of capitalism - by
dismantling Western societies and subjecting them to
intensive capitalist exploitation.  Globalization takes this
process even further - creating capital growth through
intensive exploitation on a global scale.  The
new-world-order system of global tyranny is a necessity -
in order to force the world's people to submit to the
exploitation which globalization represents.  Any attempt to
reform corporations or reverse the tide of globalization
cannot succeed - while the capitalist system continues.

Giving up capitalism does not mean giving up private
property, nor free enterprise, nor decent living standards,
nor political freedom, nor democracy.  Nor does giving up
capitalism mean that we need to adopt centralized state
planning or any other single ideology.  Karl Marx presented
an elegant analysis of capitalism, but his proposals for
alternatives were narrow and unimaginative.  In fact, what
he proposed was a continuation of the growth ideology, only
under control of "the proletariat".  What is needed today -
economically - is to give up the growth ideology altogether
and replace it by sustainability and common sense.  And what
is needed - politically - is to spurn control by elites of
any kind and to replace that by bottom-up, community-based
democracy.  In general, we need locally-based solutions
which are suited to local circumstances.  Why should any
single model fit California, Fiji, and India?

This kind of radical global transformation cannot be
achieved by piecemeal political reforms.  What is required is
a massive, global, grass-roots movement for democracy and
sustainability.  The elites who now control the world must
be removed from power entirely. This cannot be achieved by
armed revolution because the current regimes are too well
entrenched and have too much military power at their
command.  The people of the West must rise up peacefully and
reclaim the sovereignty which is promised to them by their
constitutions, and they must do this in solidarity with
their brothers and sisters in the rest of the world.

This kind of massive movement cannot be carried out by means
of party politics nor can it be accomplished by means of
mass-media communications. Our political machines and the
mass-media are controlled by the corporate establishment and
will oppose a genuine popular movement by all means at their
disposal.  The movement will need to develop its own means
of communication as movements have learned to do many times
in the past.  The Internet is useful while it exists, but it
will be taken away as a movement tool as soon as the
movement gains momentum.

The most potent weapon of all which will be used against the
movement is that of "reform".   Just when the movement
begins to gather strength, candidates will be offered to us
who claim to represent popular will, as happened with
Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1933.  Such reformist leaders
must be rejected if a better world is to be achieved.
Democracy is not about leaders - it is about the people
exercising power directly from the grassroots. If we trust
in leaders, we are turning power over to hierarchies.  And
whenever power is centered in hierarchies, then elites
always take over in the end.

The theory behind our Western model of democracy is that
people - by joining parties or various other kinds of voting
constituencies - can collectively achieve some measure of
representation in the body politic. This process inevitably
devolves into a game of power-brokering. What could
theoretically be a bottom-up process of democratic input
becomes instead a top-down, hierarchical process of
demagoguery and manipulation. Such a system of competitive
factionalism is ideally suited to enable power usurpation by
well-organized wealthy elites, and that is precisely what
has happened throughout the West. In the case of the U.S.,
James Madison and other Constitution-framers were well aware
of these dynamics, and it was their express goal to avoid
"too much" democracy - what they referred to as "mob rule".
They felt the nation should be run by "those who own it."
They succeeded.

What I am going to say next will shock many readers: a much
better model of democracy is exemplified by Cuba!  Corporate
propaganda portrays Cuba as a dictatorship but in fact the
Cuban political system is oriented at the grass roots and is
strongly supported by the overwhelming majority of Cubans.
Local communities - with 95% popular participation - discuss
the issues of the day.  A slate of local citizens is then
elected to represent the community consensus at "higher"
levels.  These delegates are not professional politicians
but are local people who retain their regular jobs and carry
out their representative duties on a part-time basis.  Such
a system is controlled from the bottom rather than the top
and that is why Cuba is so reviled by the elites who control
the West.  Such a system also serves the needs of the people
much better than does capitalism - and that is why Cuba has
had a far better record of health, education, and
lack-of-poverty than most of the third world - despite
the longtime American embargo.

I'm not suggesting that the Cuban model - nor any single
model - be adopted by everyone else.  My point is that
bottom-up grass-roots democracy is both necessary and
possible.  We need to expand our thinking beyond our usual
models and assumptions.  After all, most of us in the West
have been raised under the influence of capitalist
propaganda.  Even our understanding of the alternatives to
capitalism have been drilled into our brains by propaganda.
We need to talk to our brothers and sisters in the third
world and learn from them.  Part of our propaganda world has
been the belief that we in the West know everything and the
third world needs to learn from us.  It ain't necessarily
so!  We all need to learn from one another.  A democratic
world is a collaborative world.

One of our propaganda myths says that the path to peace is
through world government. We have been taught that warfare
has been the result of nationalism, and that by ending
nationalism we will end warfare.  The fact is that warfare
arises from competition among elites.  Before capitalism,
monarchs forced their peoples into warfare for their own
glory.  Since capitalism, all major wars have been wars of
competitive imperialism, and minor wars have resulted from
the enforcement of imperialist rule. Nationalism has not
been the cause of warfare, rather nationalism has been the
propaganda tool used to recruit populations to support
imperialist wars. In all the centuries that monarchs or
competitive imperialism existed in Europe, European powers
were continually at each others throats.  As soon as
competitive imperialism was ended - with pax americana - war
between the European powers became unthinkable.  No united
Europe was necessary and no end to national spirit was
necessary.  Only an end to elite competition was necessary.

A democratic, non-capitalist world can be a peaceful world
for the same reason that postwar Europe has been peaceful -
by replacing competition with collaboration.  A world
government would not make peace easier, but it would make
democracy impossible.  The larger the unit of sovereignty,
the easier it is for elites to find a way to take over.
Democracy works best the smaller the unit of sovereignty.

But the strongest argument against world government comes
from the concept of SYSTEM STABILITY.  Every system fails
sooner or later - whether it be an automobile engine, a
computer, or a government.  In the case of democratic
government, "failure" means the usurpation of power by some
elite or the other.  If we have a world government, then
when failure happens democracy is lost for everyone.  That
would bring us back in the situation we have now under
globalization - world tyranny.  But with distributed
sovereignty, a failure (tyrannical takeover) can be
localized.  The other nations can band together and restore
a peaceful, democratic world.

In early December 1999 a ministerial meeting of the World
Trade Organization was held in Seattle Washington.
Activists from around the world, from many different
"causes", and across social divisions, all gathered in
opposition to the WTO - the central symbol of the global
regime.  Television viewers worldwide were aware of the
street demonstrations, the violent response of the
authorities, and the fact that the WTO process was slightly
curtailed.  But these were not the strategically significant
events.  Of strategic significance was the fact that an
embryonic movement became aware of itself and began a
collaborative movement-building process. It was in the
street demonstrations that a visceral feeling of MOVEMENT
SELF AWARENESS arose; it was in the less dramatic classes
and discussion groups that the COLLABORATIVE PROCESS began.

In Seattle a sleeping giant awoke - the people of the world.
But waking up is only the first tiny step in a thousand-mile
journey - replacing capitalism and elite rule with a
peaceful democratic world.  And that thousand-mile journey
is along a very narrow path.  At every step there are
dangerous cliffs.

There is the cliff of divisiveness: the movement must build
on the solidarity and collaboration begun in Seattle.  There
is the cliff of violence: the movement must be peaceful and
it must educate those so-called anarchists who only give the
authorities an excuse to come down with an iron fist.  There
is the cliff of charismatic leaders: leaders can always be
either killed or seduced by elites. There is even the cliff
of demonstrations themselves - those are useful in building
movement self-awareness, but they are not the means to
achieve political power.  In the days before neoliberalism
and globalization, demonstrations could be used to
accelerate reform in one particular direction or another.
But reform is no longer possible - and was never of lasting
value anyway.  Grass-roots organizing and the building of a
MAJORITY MASS MOVEMENT is the only path to political victory.
This will not be easy but who ever said a peaceful and
livable world would be easy? What is necessary is possible
if human determination is sufficient.

There are many other cliffs.  There will be all sorts of
suppression, infiltration, and agent provocateurs. There
always have been when a mass movement has threatened the
privileges of installed elites. But these are not the most
dangerous cliffs.  The most dangerous cliffs of all are
CO-OPTION and VICTORY.  Co-option will be attempted as
soon as the movement shows any sign of strength. Our elite
rulers will run up the white flag and pretend to adopt our
causes. They will offer election reform, WTO reform,
smooth-talking candidates, and whatever else seems necessary
to disarm the movement.  These offers will be shallow
illusions but they will be terribly seductive.  We must be
prepared against them, just as we must be prepared in
non-violent resistance against police suppression.

But even more dangerous than co-option can be victory
itself!  Consider the example of the French Revolution, and
consider Stalinism.  We do not want a reign of terror,
guillotines, nor rule by a centralized "people's party". The
only way a collaborative democratic world can be attained is
by a movement which is itself collaborative and
collaborative process by which the movement learns to
cooperate and to work out its agendas and strategies is the
very process that will turn into the democracy of the new
world.  To compromise with violence is to bring the
seeds of violence into the new world.  To compromise with
consensus is to bring factionalism and suppression of
minorities into the new world.  To compromise with
capitalism is to guarantee the failure of the new world.
Let us begin.

        Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful
        committed citizens can change the world,
        indeed it's the only thing that ever has.
        - Margaret Mead


Richard K Moore
Wexford, Irleand
Citizens for a Democratic Renaissance
email: •••@••.•••

                Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful
                committed citizens can change the world,
                indeed it's the only thing that ever has.
                        - Margaret Mead

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