06 March 2004


1. What we have today, with neoliberalism, is a regime where all power is reduced to the power of money. Why? Because money is the general embodiment of all that we can do, make, or find. It is the universal power to appropriate nature and labor, and all power, all force, all energy, all humanity is exchangeable for money. Everyone and everything has their price.

2. When all is commodified, or made exchangeable for money, no power exists within the system of exchange that cannot be "bought off." Thus all power that promises a "kinder, gentler capitalism" does so as a propaganda front for an ascendant clique that will eventually be sold to the highest bidder, now or later. Capitalisms of all forms are thereby rendered untrustworthy.

3. Within the money system, winners buy up losers through a constant process of "selling out." The winners establish competitive margins by speeding up the processes of exploitation. Speed, more than anything else, has become paramount with the refinements of the production process brought on by Taylorism and by the revolutions in computing and electronics. The speed-up of exploitation will, above all, require a speed-up of the exhaustion of the Earth's reserves of fossil fuels, the main source of the system's energy. This will eventually lead to sudden shortfalls in oil production as well as catastrophic climate change due to global warming.

4. The money system, then, is accelerating the rates at which the natural world and the world of labor are being exploited. The trend is upward at an exponential rate. Collapse will eventually come when the profit-making processes themselves destroy the ecological basis for human existence. The re-establishment of a sustainable process of natural harmony will be achieved on Earth either with or without the human race. Ecosocialists merely argue that humanity should be around to see this sustainable process.

5. Under fantasy systems of "natural capitalism," capitalism by small-scale, philosophically "green" entrepreneurs, the business security of marginal "boutique" businesses is said to apply to all business. Government will have to preserve "natural capitalism" economies against their inevitable collapse. Doing this fairly, without creating fixed hierarchies, would mean the establishment of a co-operative of co-operatives, which is what we call ecosocialism. It wouldn't be capitalism. The rule of money would have to be conclusively broken; economic decisions would have to be made democratically.

6. The first wave of so-called "socialism" are guilty of massive human rights abuses. The main historical defect of such economic systems, however, were their adoptions of centralism and their positions of competition with capitalism. Their falure, consequently, was due to their failures to compete with capitalism in terms of speed. First wave "socialism" was too centralized, and thus eventually too slow, to compete with capitalism. At a certain stage of capitalist development, then, the capitalism of the neoliberal era merely outraced so-called "socialism" in the rush to produce commodities.

7. Unlike this inauthentic first wave "socialism," however, ecosocialism will not be centralized, but, instead, will be a globally-coordinated system of local socialisms. Each locality will be uniform in its insistence upon democratic economics, direct democracy, and equal rights for all, while at the same time the aggregate production process will be slowed down in the wake of the collapse of today's capitalism. In its complete form, the harmonious relationship between humanity and nature will be able to take on a local character, but only after the ecosocialist revolution has been globalized.

8. Insistence upon localism wihout global co-ordination has four drawbacks: 1) it sets the stage for a re-emergence of competition, because it doesn't establish extralocal loyalties at a time when the survival of the whole planet becomes everyone's concern. 2) It ignores the vast differences in access to nature between the varying portions of the planet, though setting regional inequalities (and more importantly, inadequacies as regards mere group survival) in stone, 3) it establishes no responsibility for cleaning up the mess the capitalist system has created, and 4) it permits the dictatorship of the local at a time when democratic participation and personal freedom shoudl be everyone's rights.

9. The power to institute ecosocialism will have to be held by the people as a whole acting in voluntary agreement with each other, when the time is ripe for an ecosocialist revolution. But in organizing an ecosocialist revolution, care must be taken to abolish social classes and the exploitation of labor and to insure that the human relationship to nature has become reconciled.

10. The ecosocialist revolution will have to start with 1) education and b) organization. Find out what you can about the ecological crisis, learn to teach others, make solid friendships, start organizations of learning and nurture. Stay healthy. Empower yourself and others.