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Western Civilization

by on 26/06/2021

Umair Haque in his essay “The Beginning of the End of Western Civilization”, said many right things, but made also many incorrect claims.

Umair’s claim is:

 Descartes, Darwin and Nietzsche, are to be blamed for the necessary collapse,  the Western civilization is heading too. Of course Western Civilization is much more than these three philosophers. But even if taking seriously the claim, that rationalism, individualistic competition and nihilism invented by these three philosophers, resulted the contemporary trend of self destruction of Western Civilization, still there is no other civilisation, who could take over the game.

What Umair is criticising is not the western civilisation created by Descartes, Darwin and Nietzsche, but capitalism driven by competition for the highest possible yield on investment, that is the foundation of economic system based on voluntary cooperation, through competition, and prices fixed on free markets. The capitalistic system stands in contrast to a system based on cooperation, either enforced by central power (communistic party leadership) or having decision processes implementing democratically decided decisions, enforced by democratically elected leadership ( cooperative production or service provider entities,  or cooperative  houses, or settlements) In practice the democratic cooperative system never existed at the level of national state. At the level of cooperative legal entities, many times it failed to sustain itself, due to corrupt leadership, elected, while politicaly manipulating the election in the cooperatives. 

The important thing is, the Western civilization invented both economic political systems, that are the only game in the town. Chinese system,  so called “Communistic”, follows Marxism, and if Indian civilisation is democratic competitive system, it follows western philosophy of Utilitarisme. All the known social, economic, political systems are Western civilisation systems, because nothing else exists. The only existing global alternative system to Western system is Islam, that was nowhere implemented as an economic system, but in some very wealthy Islamic countries, who could afford to have very inefficient economy, financed by income from selling oil. Other Islamic countries without such income, failed economically and politically,  when trying to implement Islamic economic laws. 

What Umair attacked is not the rationalism of Descartes, the competing for limited resources system of Darvin, or the Nietzschian nihilism, but the human egoism, its lust for power and for more and more possession of commercial stuff. 

The competitiveness of human beings is part of the Human DNA. The communistic leadership understood this need for competitiveness. They didnt abolish it, but tried to upgrade it from level of individual egotism to the level of whole national egotism. This was the reason behind the huge investments of communistic countries in sports, space exploration, and arms race. 

The communists failed, because their economic system, happened to be less efficient than the capitalistic system, and failed in effective allocation of resources. Their economic system was a tool to ensure political power, and not the opposite. The individual human egoism, its lust for power and desire for more and more possession, wellfare, and individual freedom of choice, became a major political factor, and caused loss of legitimacy, while traying to enforce cooperative economic system. 

While the communistic system, negkected intentionaly the global environment,  to achieve short term advantage upon countries with the capitalistic system, the legitimisation of individuals human lust for more and more, in the capitalistic countries, together with the unprecedent growth of human population mainly in the non western countries, since the end of WWII, necessarily drives the human civilisation towards collapse and annihilation. The first to feel it are the poor countries, with no functioning political system, like countries in Africa, most of the Muslim countries, but also some of the South and Latin American countries. 

If after the collapse of civilisation, predicted by Umair, some civilisation will continue to exist, it will be definitely a Western Civilization, and not in contrary. 

From → ECONOMICS, History, MENUE

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