A great debate has been opened around the world about which world will come in the post-pandemic.
There are many projections, some optimistic, that assume that humanity has learned the lesson of Covid-19. Develop a friendly relationship with nature. Societies will have to overcome the current profound inequalities along the lines of Pope Francis encyclical Fratelli tutti; that all feel brothers and sisters, also with nature beings, and not their masters and lords; otherwise no one will be saved (Ft n.32).
However, what causes serious concern is the so-called Great Reset of the world capitalist order. This expression was suggested by Prince Charles together with the Coordinator of the World Economic Forum, Klaus Schwab. This order is concocted by those that the report “Time to Care”, from OXFAM (English NGO that measures the levels of wealth and poverty in the world), indicates as the few billionaires. According to that source, in 2019 2,153 individuals had more wealth than 4.6 billion people did. One percent of this group has more than double the wealth of 6.9 billion people. With the pandemic, they have become even richer. Only these data reveal a seriously ill and unhealthy economy, a virus.
This group of billionaires, as clearly appears in the suggestions of the last World Economic Forum on January 21-24, 2020 (the next will be in August 2021 in Singapore) projects a New World Order. Klaus Schwab, the founder and coordinator of the WEF, together with the economist Terry Malleret, says in their book Covid-19 the Great Reset “The pandemic represents a rare window of opportunity to reflect, reimagine, and restart the world.”
If we look closely, we are facing a corporatist proposal, a capitalism of interest groups (Stakeholder Capitalism) that does not take into account the great majority of humanity. These are off their radar. Only those who are inside the bubble of the order of capital will be participants. The seven themes are even auspicious: how to save the planet, fairer economies, and technologies for the good, among others. However, when global risks are listed, accidental wars, lawless upheaval, mind scanning, neurochemical control, small nuclear weapons, and others are mentioned.
They even pretend to be socially sensitive, such as by establishing the dreamed “universal minimum income”, guaranteeing global health care, ensuring a resilient, egalitarian and sustainable future, and seeking a new global social contract. However, on the other hand, full of fear by the reactions of the whole world against a new cybernetic despotism imposed by them, they suggest the Social Score, a centralized strategy for monitoring the behavior of individuals and all societies through the intensive use of artificial intelligence. It would be surveillance capitalism.
These are beautiful words, but only words. There is never talk of changing the devastating paradigm of nature’s goods and services, the one that was proven by the irruption of a series of viruses, and now by the lethal Covid-19. The DNA of capital is not questioned, which always wants to grow and profit by all possible means. It does not refer to The Earth Overshoot, that is, the depletion of natural “resources” for our subsistence. In the same way, they do not become aware of the nine planetary borders (Nine Planet Boundaries) that in no way can be surpassed, under the danger of collapsing our civilization.
Very dangerous thing: the Great Reset does not exclude war as an economic, geostrategic, and violent confrontation means, knowing that a war today can put an end to the human species, especially from Ukraine, the most sensitive point of the confrontation with Russia. It can destroy Europe in a few minutes. The Forum only seeks to file the teeth of the lion but not to take away its voracity. At most, it reaches a green capitalism, in which green disguises the accumulative and exclusive dynamics of the capital system that remains untouchable.
We are of the opinion that this Great Reset will not prosper, for the simple fact that Earth-Gaia has reached the limits of its sustainability. It can no longer bear the robbery of the order of capital for the benefit of a few, throwing billions into misery and hunger. As some epidemiologists have already said: if we do not change the kind of devastating relationship with nature, it will send us even more deadly viruses that can destroy much of humanity.
Everything could be different. For example, Executive Director of Oxfam, Katia María, stated: If population of the richest 1% of the world paid an extra tax of 0.5% on wealth, in the next 10 years it would be possible to create 117 million jobs in education, health, and care for the elderly .
The solution must come from below, as Pope Francis frequently affirms: from the articulation of all world social movements, from those who are in the World Social Forum, in chorus with humanists and also with economists who reaffirm the basic thesis of the Economy of Francisco and Clara of the current Pontiff: an economy founded on solidarity, on cooperation, on ecology, on circulation, on reuse, in short, a human economy for humans. If we do not walk in this direction, it is very possible that the warning of Zygmunt Bauman will be fulfilled: “We will swell the procession of those who walk in the direction of their own grave.”
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