• Fred Guerin

Ecosocialism

Updated: May 25, 2020


It is fairly clear now that mainstream political parties have either been bought off by the power elite or they are just too timid to put forward the sort of radical measures required to meet the impending climate change crisis.


Neither do they seem able to take on the present capitalist system of entrenched inequality oriented and sustained by neoliberal politics.


They would prefer we just goon as 'normal' and let them continue to pretend they are making progress until they retire, collect a nice pension and boast that they were good 'public servants'. The current mix of representatives (from all political parties) will happily normalize us into debt, destitution and the 6th extinction.


So given this, is this not the time for ecosocialism? Is it not time to put forward a vision that recognizes the destructive and unjust consequences of two distinct but related modern phenomena: envrionmental degradation of the biosphere and neoliberal capitalism which enables and secures an unprecedented system of wealth inequality?


Is this not the time to build a movement and a political party that recognizes that the concentration of wealth and power in the hands of a few, at the expense of the many, is not only harming people in the present, but relentlessly driving us toward climate catastrophe and extinction? Is it not time to start building resilient economies on a small local scale founded on restoring natural spaces and biodiversity? Is it not time to put into place programs, policies and laws that make it mandatory to reverse human caused climate warming, end the use of toxic chemicals in agribusiness and industry, prohibit any further construction of oil and gas pipelines, end the subsidizing of fossil fuel companies, rein in mass production and excessive human consumption? Is it not time to begin rethinking what we really need to build a happy and healthy world grounded on the limits, capacities and possibilities that our planet can sustain?


There simply should not be such a thing as 'billionaires' or multi-millionaires, when there are millions of starving, homeless, sick and poor human beings. There should be no such thing as corporations that are understood as 'persons', wholly oriented toward the commodification of everything in nature and based on the principle of profit over people. Corporate lobbyists must be entirely abolished and corporations must be made to serve public good not merely private profit. There must be some form of Universal Basic Income, affordable housing, fully funded education, childcare, health and dental care. These are not luxuries or some socialist wish-list. They are basic to environmental and human health and well-being. Can it happen?


If this can happen it can only happen with mass popular movements. It can only come to be when enough of the world says 'ENOUGH'! Based on a broad historical study of political movements Harvard University political scientist Erica Chenoweth concludes that reshaping the world and changing the way things are through non-violent movements requires only that 3.5% of the population become involved. Non-violent civil resistance works. What unions have always known is that general strikes are successful because there is great power in numbers. Moreover non-violent social movements that have broad support across the country are much more likely to be tolerated and even supported by politicans and police forces.


In addition there must be political parties who are dedicated to working intimately and in an ongoing way with progressive economic and enviromental movements; political parties that are dedicated to raising class consciousness, and recognizing the sanctity of Mother earth by drafting principles, policies and legislation that reverse climate warming, restore biodiversity and move us toward a greener future. What I have just described is something like ecosocilism. But, is ecosocialism even possible?


The BC ecosocialists think so. Read about them here--and sign up!

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