The Crisis of Crises and what it means for anarchists

The Crisis of Crises and what it means for anarchists

From high finance to peak oil, to climate change, the world is seeing a convergence of numerous crises. We join the dots and look to the future.

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Crises are fashionable in the environmental and left-wing movements.

Every few years there is a new topic of debate on the problems facing us if

we go down our current systemic abuse of global resources. It would be

impossible to draw out a comprehensive list, but pollution, peak oil, fossil

fuels, fossil water, genetic modification and the big one – climate chaos –

have all been talked about to various degrees and accepted as issues on

requiring action.

Into this we can now add the currently ongoing financial crisis. Though it is

no longer dominating the headlines, governments in the West are still trying

to shield their populaces from the effects of it, and the worst is possibly still

to come.

As we write, nations such as Iceland and Latvia are struggling from

economic collapse, and the big question troubling economists and politicians

is whether the recession is going to kick back. There is much excitement

over tentative signs of recovery, but how sustainable it will be is hotly


Thus, the purpose of this pamphlet is two fold:

1. To outline broad economic trends of the last decade and give you

some insight into the main financial indicators that are going to affect the

next few years and what they mean in practical terms.

2. To show how these will affect government actions, and thus our

capabilities to respond to all the other crises that are coming our way.

It is fair to say that the next five or so years are likely to be very

interesting if not outright challenging. To complicate it much further, it is

increasingly apparent that we cannot separate out our responses to climate

change, peak oil, etc from what is happening in the financial world.

Underlying many solutions proposed by institutions, governments and often

grassroot movements, is a set of unrecognised assumptions. This results

from a fundamental lack of understanding of how our society is structured. It

is not sufficient to say that capitalism is not working, it is just an important

to realise that physical infrastructure from logistics to sewage systems also

play an important part, and in turn this brings in other issues such as

weather and resources. To see the interconnections we need to re-examine

the world from a wider view-point than we are accustomed to.

Any analysis which does not take into account how our society has

developed precisely because of access to cheap oil, energy, water and stable

weather is going to fail future tests. Crises are converging and we need to be

aware that much of the effects of capitalism is actually hidden from view,

and that many of our preferred solutions still rely on it in ways we do not yet

fully grasped.


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