The left in times of anger
By Manuel Cabieses Donoso *
Santiago de Chile, (Prensa Latina) These terrifying times cry out for a new society. But it will not be fruit of childbirth, but of despair of the masses.
Nor will capitalist society outdo itself as promised by the frightened oligarchy begging for indulgences.
Capitalism has to be defeated by the forces of change. For this battle, an instrument cohesive in the organic and ideological senses is needed. Who can carry out this feat if not the anti-capitalist Left? The only force not committed to a system that inexorably leads to the extinction of the human species.
The inescapable confrontation has a name: revolution. At this time, the revolution has a cultural prologue because it will be necessary to tear down thick walls of ignorance and prejudice that are the first defensive line of capitalism. The cultural and media ideological coercion of capitalism will have to be defeated.
The superior value of solidarity -supreme objective of socialism- must overcome the greed that regulates current social relations. But a cultural revolution is light years away from the routine and bureaucratic practices that have led to the consommation of the existing left.
Twenty years ago, Fidel Castro defined: 'Revolution' he said, 'is the sense of the historical moment; it is to change everything that must be changed; it is full equality and freedom; it is to be treated and to treat others as human beings; it is emancipating ourselves by our own efforts; it is to challenge powerful dominant forces within and outside the social and national realm; it is to defend values ??that are believed in at the price of any sacrifice; it is modesty, disinterest, altruism, solidarity and heroism; it is to fight with boldness, intelligence and realism; it is never lying or violating ethical principles; it is a deep conviction that there is no force in the world capable of crushing the force of truth and ideas? '(1)
Meaning of the historical moment in Chile means appreciating in all its magnitude the collapse of the institutionality of the dictatorship and the rise of the mass insurrectionary struggle experienced since October last year.
Changing everything that needs to be changed, meanwhile, means facing the heartbreaking stage without fear, which will mean overcoming traditional habits of political action. The Left will have to throw away the burden of obsolete practices and short-term visions that lead it to opportunism.
However, the left of this century will not come out of nowhere. It is an instrument of struggle that remains in the historical memory of the peoples. The rebellious action of socialism will reawaken consciences by refreshing methods of struggle and forms of organization.
The revolutionary ideas of this time will not be born in wasteland either. Social fighters who revere united practice and theory in the past left valuable lessons. In Latin America, the socialist ideology of the 21st century, for example, will be faithful to a historic vocation for unity and anti-imperialism on the Left.
At the ideological level, there is an urgent need to clear taboos and errors such as the one that identifies socialism with statism. The slogans in this sense have the effect of showing the Left as destined for the failure of 'real socialism' of the last century.
Such misrepresentation cuts the wings to the creativity of socialism that promotes the full development of human capacities and productive forces.
Socialism in times of artificial intelligence and 5G technologies will have different characteristics from the days of the telegraph and steam locomotive. But its engine will always be the concerted action of the masses. Today their mission is to free 'those zombies who roam the streets with their faces glued to their smartphones' (2).
The new society will be built by millions of initiatives. The power of the people will thus reach the full dimension of its transforming force.
In times of famine and pandemic under the dominance of climate change that threatens the planet, socialism constitutes itself as the true hope of humanity. Rosa Luxemburg's centennial 'socialism or barbarism' acquires an unusual update situation.
Assuming that the despair caused by misery and hunger will produce social change is a castrating hypothesis of the initiative of the peoples. The absence of a socialist Left to organize the fight -as historical experience shows- opens the way to fascism and false messiahs.
In Chile we are far behind in work to 'update' the Left to the new era. But it is time to lay the foundations of a Left with its own personality and 'sense of the historical moment'.
(1) Speech in the Plaza de la Revolución, Havana, May 1, 2000.
(2) Yuval Noah Harari, '21 Lessons for the 21st Century,' p. 293.
* Chilean journalist, founder of 'pUNTO fINAL' magazine
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