Anne Applebaum’s Logical Gap in Democracy

Sometimes I cannot help but laugh at the bourgeoisie and its defenders not coming to the logical conclusion about the lack of democracy in its own system. It is even funnier to see them even make an argument against themselves without even realizing it. Case in point: I’d like to bring up something Slavoj Zizek brought up at a talk he gave in Mark’s Bookshop in Manhattan on October 26. He points to a statement by Anne Applebaum, the woman who wrote that dreadfully misinforming book on the Soviet gulags. This writer actually reveals the real truth behind the Occupy Wall Street, its need to exist and what it needs to do. In her vulgar attempt to bash the movement, claiming they don’t understand what freedom and democracy is, or how it works, she actually reveals the need to abolish capitalism.

This is here statement:

“…in one sense, the international Occupy movement’s failure to produce sound legislative proposals is understandable: Both the sources of the global economic crisis and the solutions to it lie, by definition, outside the competence of local and national politicians…

The emergence of an international protest movement without a coherent program is therefore not an accident: It reflects a deeper crisis, one without an obvious solution. Democracy is based on the rule of law. Democracy works only within distinct borders and among people who feel themselves to be part of the same nation. A “global community” cannot be a national democracy. And a national democracy cannot command the allegiance of a billion-dollar global hedge fund, with its headquarters in a tax haven and its employees scattered around the world.

Unlike the Egyptians in Tahrir Square, to whom the New York protesters openly (and ridiculously) compare themselves, we have democratic institutions in the Western world. They are designed to reflect, at least crudely, the desire for political change within a given nation. But they cannot cope with the desire for global political change, nor can they control things that happen outside their borders. Although I still believe in globalization’s economic and spiritual benefits — along with open borders, freedom of movement and free trade — globalization has clearly begun to undermine the legitimacy of Western democracies.

“Global” activists, if they are not careful, will accelerate that decline. Protesters in London shout,“We need to have a process!” Well, they already have a process: It’s called the British political system. And if they don’t figure out how to use it, they’ll simply weaken it further.”

Listen to what she says here in a moment of honesty: “Both the sources of the global economic crisis and the solutions to it lie, by definition, outside the competence of local and national politicians.” Here she literally speaks the truth, our political system cannot tackle the effects of international capitalism. The power of these transnational corporations have power beyond the power our political institutions have even at the most powerful national level. She admits this thing we have, falsely called democracy, is incapable of solving the problem we face. The consequences of global capitalist financial dealings are due to their international character, and are out of control of democratic mechanisms. How much more truthful can she be?

Thus the truth is obvious, we don’t have a democracy. Again it is spoke here: “…national democracy cannot command the allegiance of a billion-dollar global hedge fund.” If the powers that which control our economy, our country and our destiny are beyond our control, then this is certainly no democracy. After this confusingly honest statement, she begins to dig the grave of capitalism much further.

“Although I still believe in globalization’s economic and spiritual benefits… globalization has clearly begun to undermine the legitimacy of Western democracies.”

So now we have a direct admission that capitalism destroys democracy. At this point some readers may become confused. What is she saying here? Is she saying that we should abolish capitalism? Is this turning into an anti-capitalist speech? It seems that way, or at least anyone would draw that logical conclusion. However she does answer this rhetorical question in the next paragraph.

““Global” activists, if they are not careful, will accelerate that decline. Protesters in London shout,“We need to have a process!” Well, they already have a process: It’s called the British political system. And if they don’t figure out how to use it, they’ll simply weaken it further.”

After having very honestly shown the capitalism undermines democracy and that the so-called democracy we have cannot fix this problem… She turns around and tells us to use that very system that she just said doesn’t work, to solve the problem. What has happened in this line of reasoning? How does she explain this blatant contradiction in her position? To her, I think there is none, she is saying something else. She is saying we can do nothing. If we accept the system we have then we must accept that it is beyond our control. If we do not, and try to build mechanisms to control them, we will destroy our own democracy.

She draws the conclusion that capitalism is the problem, but says there is nothing we can do about it. The solution is obvious, if capitalism is the problem, then we should get rid of capitalism.

The ruling class must give us a fake solution tot he problem, or risk having their system destroyed. Even Bill Clinton knew this:

“…because your demands create a vacuum, and if you don’t bring quickly concrete proposals which will fill in this vacuum, who knows who will fill in this vacuum?”

– Bill Clinton

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