The name’s Capitalism. Racial Capitalism.
Like a totalized 21st century social system, like a smoother corporate bureaucratic James Bond. Racial capitalism: naming systemic inequalities exposed by post-George Floyd BLM resistance, and revealed by the Covid pandemic’s disparate racial impacts. Racial capitalism now is settler-colonialist neoliberalism, with the genocide accelerated more up front and center in your face, toxic combo-Rush Limbaugh and Jabba the Hutt.
Racial capitalism is bankrupting Detroit. Racial capitalism is the slavery and land grabbing foundations of US political economy. Racial capitalism is bipartisan. Racial capitalism is slave patrol-modeled authorities licensed to kill in Flint, Kenosha, Ferguson, Louisville, all oppressed communities north as well as the old south, via police and viral and human rights violations, dispossessions, structural and deadly violence. Racial capitalism is constitutive of “America”.
Liberal and conservative opinion ignores, denies existence of, and takes racial capitalism for granted. It is apologized and whitesplained as supposedly unintended effects of the whole network of norms, investments, initiatives, policies, social movements co-opted or crushed, “the market”, demographic trends, “identity politics”, a “data-driven” system that somehow just coincidentally grows out of slavery and genocidal land theft, most recently advocating (“In Detroit; in America.”) counting only the votes of predominately white communities in the 2020 presidential election. Racial capitalism is the basic structure of the system driving the data, driving the disenfranchisement and the property ‘rights’ of whiteness asserted as if they were normal! And yet respectable people don’t seem to think it even exists. Astonishing, if you stop and think about it.
Racial 007 Capital’s Weapons
Racial capitalism – meet climate disaster. Meet your North American end in the emerging new People of Color US majority debuted on November 3, 2020. But you already know us, from COINTELPRO, Wounded Knee, state immigration terror in Rio Grande valley kiddie cages, Muslim bans, drone strikes, Standing Rock, facial recognition technology, the W Bush post-9/11 magic lantern, worked up to the Prism virtual panopticon project in Obama time that Edward Snowden showed us. The very virtual bloodstream of your close cousin surveillance capitalism. Just like you know the invisibility of your own power is its great strength, you know everything and all of us, so you know about resistance and that there are lots of things to fear, and you’re a very fearful racial capitalism, as well as fearsome. Now they’re coming to know you, and the ground is shifting under our feet all the time!
Racial capitalism has many weapons. Brain-devouring information systems linked to “educational” indoctrination with mass racial incarceration-level deep incentive structures. Money. Legal and political power. Military power. Really dumb intelligence agencies with really scary police state technological and propagandistic powers. Racial capitalism has tentacles and guns and poisons that kill and overcome opposition. Its most powerful weapon is the minds of the oppressed. (Stephen Biko) Ultimately a weaponized corporate state capable of acting in the interests of racial capitalism at all times and under all circumstances. But now racial capitalism has our backs to the wall and we have to fight! Leader-full Movements for Black Lives and associated networked human rights formations are showing the way.
Shaken, not stirred – unlicensed to kill
President Obama’s rhetoric and intelligence were stirring. The Obama administration’s failure to shake, er I mean repair and restore, the foundations of racial capitalism in response to the state crimes of Iraq, corporate crimes of the 2008 crash, climate and other environmental crimes of the Cheney fossil foolish first decade of the century, was another blood stained moment on our road. Grace Lee Boggs precisely located Obama’s source of weakness: he didn’t believe another world is possible. Do we? We see it’s inevitable and are already freaking out trying to figure what to do about it! While simultaneously trying to survive the inevitable reactionary backlash against the fruits of our better efforts.
What we’re doing: shaking our foundations down from the heights of racial capitalism’s panopticonic arrogance; exposing ‘colorblindness’ as a veil for white supremacy; re-occupying, transforming and sustaining the commons necessary for surviving racial capitalism’s cataclysms; abolishing carceral, dominationist, imperial, racist and patriarchal structures and standards; growing agroecological survival transformations; envisioning ecosocialism with environmental justice; democratizing political economy under decentralized and accountable leadership. Demanding utopia out of dystopian reality.
An agenda for grown up human beings, organizing and building our current world-shaking networked movement of movements, into “the real movement which abolishes the present state of things”. The resulting vodka martini an artisanal libation mixing grassroots power, democratic vision, and mutual aid for survival leading to accountable self government. Future. Human future. License to wage love.