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The West Needs an Employment Reform

Redistribution of employment. It sounds socialist, but it is really a forced position for the Western economies, as Washington and Brussels peek into the unfathomable, a total economic collapse.

While the forces of NATO match up with the SCO over the US grand area strategy in response to the subtle power shift occuring in the world, as BRIC rises to eminence over the next 40 year cycle, it's time for Western governments to do some soul searching of their own, not just when comes to human and civil rights, but with regards to the entire structure of capitalist society.

Jobs are not coming back - and people can barely survive with them

According to the International Labor Organization, ILO, roughly 40 percent of the world's countires are in a state of civil upheaval, with the worst impact on the Western countries. Mass demonstrations and riots dominate the cityscapes to the point, where TIME pronounced "the protester" Person of the Year.

Lately, even Russia and China are experiencing mass protests.

As in the case of the Tunisian street vendor, Mohamed Bouazizi whose self-immolation set first the MENA region ablaze with revolutionary fervor and in turn inspired European and American protesters for social justice, frustration over lack of jobs and the economic downturn has awakened a growing number of citizens to the current depression, dubbed a "jobless recovery" by the establishment press, a condition that may continue for the next two decades.
You can't win the war, if you lose the peace. If you win the peace, you may not have to fight the war.
At the heart of it is a political imperative, a mathematical necessity to reorganize society at a profound level. The 40 hour work week, once a dream and a struggle for the working classes, has become obsolete, but not in the way suggested by the financial advisors to the government, who - in the face of dropping real wages and a looming food crisis - can only think of cutting public spending.

The core of the issue is that 1 in 2, according to some analysts 2/3 of Americans, are suffering poverty, even while working, sometimes up to three jobs at the time. Additionally, 45 millions are on food stamps.

Taxation of the super-rich and the multi-national corporations, as suggested by the left, or increased tax cuts, more free trade agreements and shipping of jobs overseas to the cheap slave-like labor of developing nations, as it is suggested by the right, cannot change the dynamics of a situation.

In very simple terms one part of society work themselves to death to maintain an illusion of middle class standards, and too many become long term unemployed and marginalized from the employment market, technically producing no other value to society than as consumers of money transferred to them by the government to maintain social stability.

The transfer of public funds is also a fixed position, for as long as there are not enough jobs. Mere industrialization, without outsourcing jobs to the Third World and without the expected effect of advanced robotics, automatically reduces the total amount of work hours available in society to justify the reward in the shape of spendable wages.

End Poverty to Debt Reduction - The Age of Missed Opportunities

In essence, a growing number of people, regardless of superficial changes in conjunctures, are afforded de facto "living wages" without adding the value to the production system proportional to it. They are effectively incapable of penetrating the work market, because all the work hours are occupied by the worker bees, who will defend their position to be able to maintain the slightly higher privilege paid out as "working wages."

The idea of inventing jobs, boosting productivity, collides with established facts and ingrained policies.

From the 1980s the West was challenged to develop the Third World, namely putting an end to hunger. In spite of the songs, the occasional charity and the generous loans and grants, this effort developed into what is more accurately a sophisticated debt scheme.

In the 1990s the West was called upon to relieve the developing countries of debt, but as it often goes the advice of activists was overturned by cool economic pragmatism - a pragmatism that now comes back to bite the West, as it is caught in the exact same debt-corruption cycle with the exact same manifestations of political extremism and social upheaval as was before more or less reserved for the developing world.

There is an almost exact symmetry to the way the problems we have exported now come back to haunt us.
"Birth control, the economics of birth control, industrialization and the benefits of mass production - these all work together to make it seem like the Malthusian Trap is no longer current, but to think it "obsolete" is a naive error, mistaking the concept for the principle it quantifies."
We live in an era of missed opportunies, but the way forward is not to grieve over the past. The current decision paralysis of Western governments - when comes to almost everything but imperialism in the foreign policy area and militarization of policing domestically - will, eventually, have to be replaced by a pragmatic, mathematical analysis of the social engineering paremeters available.

In this analysis it will be obvious that the 40 hour work day and the real wages of workers will both have to be adjusted dramatically. Work sharing has to become the agenda, unless the West attempts to quit its neo-liberal agenda, disband multinationalism and retrieve its lost work places from China.

If so, it would lead to a dramatic new form of national socialism, and even from the most generous perspective one that cannot facilitate the social and economic growth called for. With an isolationist and ultra-protectionist approach like this the West would only hasten its apparent demise into third world status.

Structural Inertia vs. Hard Political Imperatives

For now, even thinking of it is unrealistic, but with the growing severity of the crisis, eventually any measure will seem worth considering, and all options will be put on the table, even temporary dismantling of democracy.

In the face of such a harrowing spectre "technocratic" governments in Italy and Greece are already struggling to work out a future mode of existence of the nation-state in a world dominated by multi-national powers.

Even corporatism will have to eventually acknowledge the necessity of a nation-state for their own agenda not to be compromised by revolutionary movements or organized crime.

When that day comes - when the heads cool enough to view society rationally and to accept the imperative of good governance - it will become obvious that the most essential restructing of society to keep it in line with 21st century developments is a reform of the employment market.

Ironically, people will have to work less and be paid more. That is the only solution to equasion and the only order that appropriately answers the multitude of dilemmas embedded in capitalist democracy.

Five years ago I studied the UN special development reports for the Arab World and North Africa, comparing them to numbers on Internet and cell phone distribution and penetration in the region. I concluded that what I then called "Arab Renaissance" was in the cards.

This blog, before Adbusters began planning its OWS campaign, published an article that cautiously pointed out the potential for a transcendent movement in the wake of the great financial crisis of 2008, but one that would ultimately change the entire economic structure of the world.
"There is an almost exact symmetry to the way the problems we have exported now come back to haunt us."
Based on the Washington foreign policy consensus Geopolitical Dynamics also called the revitalization of the Cold War dynamic with the collapse of Beijing as the ultimate goal for NATO forces, as the West feels incapable of countering the demographics and economics leading to Chinese world dominance by 2016 by other means than nefarious plotting and brute force. It is simply a business-plan to set the world ablaze, whereever China has critical interests.

As we have witnessed throughout 2011 all of these processes are now in progress, but not necessarily to the benefit of the world. It all depends, by and large, on the collective response and on the ability of the political and financial leaders to adopt, no simply co-opt, the essence of the conclusions derived from juxtaposing these political and economic mega-events.

Even if it may be prudent not to have too great a confidence in their ability to do so, the structuralist perspective offers reasonable probability that humans will eventually do what is absolutely critical to their own survival. Arriving at a reasonable conclusion is, in other words, more likely when it is forced upon people by necessity.

The wild card in the game is panic, hysteria, paranoia and decision paralysis, which will add to the structural intertia that is already manifest in multiple breakdowns of diplomacy, not least when comes to the Doha and the COP. The resistance against CO2 reduction and clean energy reforms also testifies to a significant structural inertia, even in the face of doom.

The Case For Employment Reform - Why It is Likely to Set in

Pessimists need not make long arguments. Their case appears water tight. When I make this prediction, I make it partly as a well-meant advice. I feel it is my duty to point out the obvious, even when it is obvious, and it is obvious that the politicians are willfully oblivious to the obvious. It's a public service. I make it rather confidently, because such reform the revolutionary dynamic will kick in.

It may be curbed by totalitarian measures in an instinctive reaction, but draconian measures don't really dissolve the revolutionary logic, which is an inherent element in all forms of socialization. Following the traditional trajectory the governments, working to protect the "too big too fail" financial institutions and corporations, can only manage to make the poor still poorer, until social instability reaches a point where it adversely affects the productivity of society, reflected also in considerable and threatening losses to the so-called elite.
When we look to Latin America in particular, the source of hope for all the world in spite of her many grievances and rampant drug violence, it is nearly completely "pink" or democratic socialist in spite of hundreds of years of nefarious scheming and ruthless tampering from the CIA.
After such a process the obvious should become more obvious, even to the reactionary. It may take ten years to get there, but in almost every other case when I have made accurate predictions, the effect has set in sooner than I expected. Within the first half of this decade, expect people to begin to mull over the concept of a comprehensive employment reform.

Why? It's the math.

During the long Irish independence struggle the prevailing sentiment in the world was a sort of despair not dissimilar from the way reasonable people respond to the Middle East Conflict today. Yet we have lived to see IRA lay down arms.

Similarly, the pessimistic view would have led to total annihilation in nuclear Holocaust during the arms race of the Cold War, but the Soviet Empire was dismantled almost without bloodshed. 

Furthermore, we have witnessed the end of the apartheid-regime in South Africa, in spite of vast military superiority of the Western forces that backed it, and considerable intrasigence from politicians and power-brokers.

Essentially, colonialism and imperialism ended, because it was structurally indefensible. In the long run - and Western policies are often simply deviced for one election turn - it had posed large disadvantages than advantages to follow the traditional course. 

Like in the case of the racist mentality behind slavery in America, the imperialist mindset, still active and pervasive in the West, was only disassembled to some degree after the fact. 

When we look to Latin America in particular, the source of hope for all the world in spite of her many grievances and rampant drug violence, it is nearly completely "pink" or democratic socialist in spite of hundreds of years of nefarious scheming and ruthless tampering from the CIA.

Not disregarding the political struggle, nor the casualties along the way, nor many and notable setbacks and disasters, cultural development tends to shape itself after an ultimately intelligible political reality, an intricate system of cause and effect that exists outside of human ability to comprehend it through speculative investigation.

Reality remains what it is, and whether denied or acknowledged, the natural laws continue to function, unaffected by human reviews.

Laws of Nature are Persistent, Even Against Critics

I once had a discussion with a lecturer who claimed that "the Malthusian Trap is obsolete." I objected to the notion, referring to virtually every part of the developing world, where the principle is very making itself known, manifest both regionally and nationally. But more than that, I was surprised to find that such a view would be presented by an academic, an expert.

The demographic trap underlies, still, the Western construct, even if it may not be able to defy altogether whatever contraptions we have invented to circumvent it: Birth control, the economics of birth control, industrialization and the benefits of mass production - these all work together to make it seem like the Malthusian Trap is no longer current, but to think it "obsolete" is a naive error, mistaking the concept for the principle it quantifies.

The West is caught in a production vs. demographics trap of its own now, a derivative of the Malthusian trap. The sooner scholars and politicians come to terms with the mathematics of it, the sooner the decision paralysis can be broken and replaced by actual visionary policies, which form the foundation of any successful culture.

That is, of course, if the West intends to win. The first rule of winning is: You can only win, if you do not default. The second rule is: You have to avoid losing. If you lose, you don't win. It's that simple.

This leads directly to the conclusion, which is where hope can be found, even in this twisted age:

You can't win the war, if you lose the peace. If you win the peace, you may not have to fight the war.

So, when we have cut through all the losing positions, the multitude of erroneous paths, leading only to disillusion and self-destruction, whatever is left - however unlikely - must be the truth, even in the political sense of the word.