Sunday, October 28

The California Wildfires and the Capitalist System



It has all the signs of a deja vu. A natural disaster hits, masses of people are forced into a stadium, thousands are left homeless with no aid from the government. The devastation is immense. By now, everyone has heard about the wildfires raging in Southern California. When I say that it has the signs of a deja vu, I'm of course, refering to Hurricane Katrina where people were left for days without food or shelter to starve and die, and when they attempted to gather food, or too leave they faced a hail of bullets from cops who were given the order to "shoot to kill" in order to protect private property. A little more than 2 years later, the people of california find themselves in a similiar situation. The differences though are immense. Hurricane Katrina killed thousands and wrecked a entire city, its destruction was 10 times that of the wildfires. But the difference that is more important I think, is that unlike Katrina, the victims of this natural disaster are both wealthy and working class while the victims of Hurricane Katrina were almost completely working class. This explains the governments' more effective response, along with the fact that they want to avoid the anger, outrage and backlash of the masses that came after the government left the people of New Orleans stranded to die.

Yet despite the corporate media proclaiming a great recovery response, there have been the inevitable failures in the response that come from and imperial system only interested in profit and money not the people. The San Francisco Chronicle earlier this year reported on how the National Guard warned that the imperial occupation of Iraq would hinder a natural disaster response in California. Trucks, radios, generators, fuel, and other supplies are missing from the recovery effort as they are serving in Iraq. This goes to show where the interests of the system we live under are, in effectively exploiting and oppressing people in other countries rather than funding people's needs, not even in emergency situations. The system's attitudes towards its people is fuck 'em, they can live on the streets if it is profitable for us, if they can pay their own way; that's the only way we'll aid them. This is further proven by the fact that after Katrina and already starting now with the wildfires, insurance companies have used the disaster to cancel deals, yet another example of how privatization fails. When privatized, weither it be healthcare or insurance, companies act only when profitable, however under socialism it is the opposite as the system is not designed to serve profit but the people.

3 comments:

Renegade Eye said...

Racism is the main way the working class is divided. Even if New Orleans is working class, the response would be different if NO was lily white.

JDHURF said...

Good post. The current issue of the Socialist Worker has some exemplary articles on the same topic:

www.socialistworker.org

JDHURF said...

btw does anyone know how to post a hyper link in these blog comment areas? I've seen renegade eye do it before.