Well, I’m guilty about a lot of things, but not about calling myself as socialist, in believing that we humans better goddamn well learn to live together better or none of us or our descendants are going to enjoy life very much, in believing that the only way this can happen is if greed and its partner, mean-spiritedness, cease to be the driving forces of our society.
Is it possible for our (U.S.) society to change?
Well, it’s not like a socialist order, a “from each according to their ability; to each according to their work,” has ever really had a really decent try. The battle has always been fought on the terms of those who hold the power, so even the bravest socialist attempts, if they weren’t either crushed or co-opted, ultimately became equally vicious, paranoid, self-serving, and, oftentimes, murderous as the systems they were supposed to supersede.
Is it possible to change? Well, is the current world situation “possible”? Can it be tolerated, accepted? The chasms of inequality between peoples, are growing, not diminishing.The constant threat of violence, horrible violence is ever present. A science fiction nightmare of “the state” “knowing” everything about everybody in order to fight “the terrorists” — their polar opposites and their perfect partners — is our reality.
So something else is surely worth continuing to struggle for.
No, Karl Marx didn’t have it all laid out and outlined and all one had to do was read the directions and follow the map. And Lenin and everyone else who raised the banner of socialism haven’t shown the way to create a more humane social order. But that doesn’t mean that the goal isn’t right.
We have to learn to live together. We have to share the Earth’s resources. We have to learn how to build a society together in a way that makes sense for everyone, not just an extraordinarily privileged few.
We have to try.