Political Systems in the 21st Century
en:Crisis (Marxian) gives a synoptic view of how various Marxist tendencies view the cyclic evolution of what it has given the names "Capitalism", "the bourgeois social order", etc. In this page I am trying to work out my understanding of how the real forces evident in the real world might play themselves out in the current century.
At this point, nowhere on the planet have new forms of social aggregation begun to replace the official ones although the means for this to happen are now for the first time in place. As the linked article above states, the primary factors are the consciousness of the political actors and the object forces of historical development. It is my expectation that by the end of the century these will have complete superseded the existing structures.
The 2008-2009 Financial crisis vividly shows the hallmarks of a late crisis of the existing world order. The essence of that order is that all social activity, governance, etc,, is driven by and has as its purpose private accumulation. Thus nothing which seriously challenges this order can get much attention, resources, etc., or if it does these efforts are generally ineffectual. Pollution driven climate change and health care being the classical but by no means sole examples. Problems which require a transnational and essentially social basis will continue to be poorly addressed because society is explicitly organized to do so.
In particular, the overall process (of late triumphalist capitalism) has certain aspects which can be expected to lead to more and more severe crises until there is some fundamental restructuring of society on a global basis. On the one hand Capitalism drives to ever greater levels of productivity and efficiency with the narrow confines of its (often mismanaged) production for the consumer culture upon which it has become dependent. If it were able to produce consumers whom it was able to pay the high wages needed for demand corresponding to ever increasing production it would be able to sustain itself indefinitely. This seemed to be possible after the last great conjuncture resolved in the last phase of the Second Thirty Years Wars because of social polices that lead to a massive increase in the production of just such consumers up to and including the induction of chinese workers in global production. However this process has reached its limits and the classic signs are overproduction and the associated panics are evident.
The current order is, for the reason stated in the previous ¶ completely incapable of sustaining itself and will almost certainly be in a protracted period of crisis while various ineffective reforms are tried and the fundamental problem advances.
Outside of the United States and a large block of right wing nations, socialist parties and ideas have been a current in political discourse for at least two or three generations. In the United States however, it is ironic that poplular consciousness of socialism is being driven by a revived red-baiting of the most backward right wing elements.