September 13, 2016
Historian, specializing in global shadow elites
Translated by Kristina Kharlova
Andrei Fursov, a famous historian, sociologist, spoke at the site of the Ekaterinburg diocese with a lecture “Global crisis”. He spoke about the underlying causes of this phenomenon – economic, political and systemic.
In an interview with Nakanune.RU the expert said that the main threat for Russia is loss of sovereignty, traditional values and civilizational code.
Loss of sovereignty is manifested in the fact that we are dependent on Western banks, buying American bonds. Fursov’s lecture was devoted to realities of capitalism, which invariably leads to crises. He evaluated Russia’s position today – according to him, we are still “eating” the legacy of the Soviet Union, but in foreign policy there are already a number of steps to independence.
“They are modest so far – it’s Crimea and Syria. Modest steps, but they differ sharply from when we retreated from our positions under the late Gorbachev and Yeltsin”.
In his lecture Andrew Fursov tried to explain why the destruction of USSR became the trigger for the dismantling of the capitalist system, which has nowhere else to grow. He spoke about the “Three D’s” – de-industrialization, de-population and de-rationalization of consciousness.
The word “crisis” has become the key term of the modern age. We are constantly talking about crisis: financial crisis, educational crisis, economic crisis. It turns out, we have a crisis of everything. The crisis is a systemic crisis. What system? It is a crisis of modern society, the crisis of market economy, the crisis of industrial system. We use one word – when, after 1991, we broke up with Marxism, this word has become not indecent or dirty, but somehow avoided. The word is very simple – “capitalism”.
Unfortunately, since the late 50’s in the Soviet Union, capitalism was no longer seriously studied as it was in Comintern times. In the late 1950’s first we translated Western Communists, then the left, then the liberals, then sunk to the neoliberals. And therefore we missed a number of important moments – the formation of a new predatory faction of the bourgeoisie after the Second world war – “corporatocracy”. The struggle of corporatocracy and state-monopoly capital has begun the West.
In the US, it took a very acute form of a creeping coup that began with Kennedy assassination and impeachment of Nixon, and by the mid-1970’s corporatocracy firmly consolidated power. First they brought a man unfit for power – Carter. But then came Reagan. And from that moment they could deploy a very serious offensive against the Soviet Union, especially, when we took up a defensive position – not a leap into the future, but reaction to the situation. Apparently – and this is my guess, I have no direct evidence – there was a trade of a number of our technical achievements, in which we were ahead of the West. For example, in computer technology: Politburo resolutions of 1968 and 1973 – that we will not develop computer technology – meant “whatever we need we will steal”. But we were 10 years ahead of the West at this stage and then got behind. What happened in exchange? In the late 60’s Soviet foreign banks were opened in the West. Thus began the transfer of nomenclature capital to foreign banks. In other words, this was likely the “exchange.”
Capitalism is expansion
I disagree with those who believe that the capitalist system is an absolute triumph. Capitalist system is a complex system which limits capital in its entire and long-term interests, otherwise, left by itself – it will eat itself, the society and the biosphere. And second – it ensures expansion in space. That is, the capitalist system is what holds capital in space and time. When there is no more space and time left – the capitalist system ceases to exist, but capital exists. You often hear, well, why are you telling us again about the crisis of capitalism, we heard this since the time of Lenin, but capitalism still exists. Or, as in Soviet times, our top intellectuals liked to say, returning from abroad, when asked “How is capitalism?” answered: “Rotting with a nice aroma”. In fact, systems die slower than men. There are no eternal systems – systems are born and die, and the crisis phase, the phase of dying is approximately 100-150 years.
Transnational groups of global coordination and control
There are two things, two features of capitalism, which are very important for us to understand the dynamics. First: capitalism creates transnational groups of global coordination and control, which Ivan Ilyin called “backstage”, dismissed as “just a conspiracy theory”. Why capitalism needs these groups?
The fact that one of the basic contradictions of capitalism is that capitalism is economically united and integrated global system, and politically – it is a sum but not the whole. The sum of the states – since the Peace of Westphalia.
The Westphalian system flowed into Vienna, Versailles, Yalta. Yalta did not become Maltese, but somehow the Westphalian system in a broken form still exists. And politically the world is still not the whole, but a sum. There is a contradiction at the level of policy – economy, state – capital, whole – sum. But the fact is that the bourgeoisie, especially financial, especially the biggest, has interests outside of their states.
And they can realize these interests only if they violate the laws of their state and another state. The upper echelon of the bourgeoisie has a historical necessity for structures that are: a) transnational; b) closed (but not secret, or we would not know about them); C) long-term players. In that moment, when the bourgeoisie felt this need in the late 17th and early 18th centuries, it had no bourgeois structures. And then they – as in the song “I created him from what I had” – looked around. And turned to Masonic organizations. In 1717 the existing lodges of England came together and formed the Grand Lodge of England. And that marked the beginning of development of these structures. We somehow either demonize masons, or say that it’s all nonsense. Free masonry was the first closed structure [secret society – FR], and then came others and one of the problems of the global capitalist elite was that those structures which emerged at the turn of 1960 to 1970 for solving a number of problems, including, to strangle the Soviet Union, have expired, and new structures were needed. And how do you create new structures in a crisis?
In other words, closed transnational structures of global coordination and control is the norm of capitalist development, its essential feature. This does not mean there were no closed structures before. The Templars were half a generation short of creating the first European Union, had to wait for Hitler – the father of the European Union. But didn’t. Because they did not have the global market.
Capitalism devoured itself in 400 years
Once Immanuel Wallerstein said, I wonder in a thousand years how will we remember capitalism? As a brief moment of breakthrough, exponential growth in contrast to pre-capitalist development or as something else? It is absolutely clear that capitalism is a historical conspiracy, it’s a crime. But at the same time capitalism is fantastic inventions, enormous growth of population. The dismantling of these institutions is the dismantling of the capitalist system. As soon as the global rate of profit in a capitalist system was shrinking, capitalism snatched a part of non-capitalist zone and turned it into a capitalist periphery, solving the problem of cheap labor and source of raw materials. This enabled great spurts of colonial expansion – colonial expansion followed by a pause, this was related to a global rate of profit. And what happened in 1991? It was all over. There were no more non-capitalist zones left. Capitalism can no longer grow extensively, there is nowhere to grow, only into space.
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