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 Autonomy and self-organisation

author: Karl-Heinz Thier - 27.08.2002 21:13

After the beginning of the last century, Chief Womba of Leverville, a place called after the founder of Unilever, the Dutch multinational company, collected coconuts for Mr. Lever. Mr. Lever was earning a lot of money, as you know. Chief Womba only had to deliver his coconuts for a good living. After a year, he had all he needed for a good living: ten wives, a big village, pearls, brass poles and so on. He no longer collected coconuts. Mr. Lever couldn't understand this attitude. "Why didn't Chief Womba carry on collecting coconuts? Every palm tree could be a full bank account for him."
Those who cannot stop collecting money, who regard striving for wealth as an end in itself, ought not be responsible for adults, children, partners of life, or the solidarity of a society, because striving for wealth destroys human relations. Fear is governing such people. They are behaving irrational, they are no longer in their senses because they need more than to satisfy their sensual needs. If this fear develops into expropriation, into subordinating men, at least two people are necessary: one who subordinates, and one who is subordinated. Chief Womba didn't belong to them. The insane Mr. Lever, however, found many other insane people on earth who readily complied with subordination.

Those who like Chief Womba do not need wealth and industrialisation as an end in itself, but only for the needs of a social being, do not feel at home in capitalism. Foolishly dropped into this world, they feel lonesome in this world of singles, relentless fighters, rogues, and traitors. Either they are aware of this, or they deny living in capitalism. Those denying take to past family structures as the conservatives do. Those aware of capitalism without being insane think of new social structures of solidarity to maintain their sanity among these insane surroundings. That's the dawn of socialism.
Thus it started two centuries ago. In the long run, however, the insane of the socialist movement carried the day. They didn't want to live up to their sensual needs only, but they were striving for bourgeois wealth and industrialisation as an end in itself. They thought, capitalism could go together with socialism, or, even worse, socialism had to compete with capitalism. They didn't think of capitalism and democracy as an antagonism. Or they thought of having to suffer this contradiction, no need to solve it, they thought themselves able to oppose nature, natural laws, natural development, natural dialectics. Looking for freedom in the sky, not on earth. Regarding the literature of Antoine de Saint Exupéry e.g. as the price of industrialisation. Thus only testifying that capitalist antagonism can be suffered only by the assistance of priests, of culture.

Yet new generations were coming up again and again, sane people turned up again and again. So capitalism had to generate its material basis, i.e. insane people, again and again by violence, rape, war, stress, drugs. Most of the newborn wouldn't accept such insanity, so that the basis of capitalism was eroded more and more. This materialistic dialectics went on its way. The so called socialist movement, dominated by insane people, wasn't aware of this; turning Karl Marx into a priest, not relying in themselves as sensual and social beings, they ended up in fighting each other. The new socialist movement wasn't satisfied with abolishing kingship, installing a parliamentary system. They didn't want representatives acting for them, they wanted real democracy, acting themselves, without the assistance of political parties or a state. They didn't need any assistance, they felt sane, able to govern themselves at every level: councils at every level. They said: Wealth and industrialisation is no end in itself, not to be reached at cost of solidarity. First priority is given to physical and psychic wellness of each. Self-sustaining and sharing, no commerce. Human relations are no commercial relations. You cannot buy somebody whom you can rely. Beyond self-sustaining you don't need much for your happiness, look at Chief Womba.

Meanwhile socialism, surrounded by capitalism, has grown among people, although they are not aware of it. More and more people defy consumerism, have mentally given notice to their boss, prefer their family to their career, are free to love more than one if needs be, are free to choose their neighbours, free to let students decide what, where, when, how and by whom they want to be taught. A new socialist movement is to bring this unconscious socialism into consciousness by offering three steps into socialism worldwide.

  1. In German elections, a majority of people would vote for a government which guarantees a monthly income of 1250 Euro net. Which stops employment of individuals with a fortune of 250.000 Euro, and which stops employment of life-partners earning 50.000 Euro p.a. each. Which stops monthly incomes of more than 15.000 Euro gross. Which does away with German military forces, secret services, production of arms and subsidies for products produced cheaper by our European and non-European partners, thus taking seriously the rhetoric of partnership. Which taxes speculative investment yields and high earnings highly. Which confiscates real estate in case of evasive capital. Which no longer subsidises churches and political parties. Which reduces German parliament and government and abolishes the German status of a public servant. Which stops nuclear power and the Transrapid train. Which does not encourage the production and use of private cars. Which makes public radio an TV stations private. You see, there is enough revenue in Germany. If the Germans want it this way, it will be done this way. Then many Germans will be prepared to work for nothing. They will get rid of frustration and consumerism. Much of the revenue will be left to support the terms of trade of selected Third World partners. A stream of creative power will be released among people. The German government encourages them for self-government. It furthers collective, self-governed housing projects and keeps the housing and real estate market under control until there will be only co-operative societies in this market. The German government no longer interferes with education, just makes sure that children are offered some sort of education - free for the poor. It furthers free, self-governed school projects where the students decide by themselves what, where, when, how and by whom they want to be taught. Those who are born in Germany become German citizens, this applies also to foreigners who have lived in Germany for five years; immigrations quotas are set by law. Academics are put on a par with workers. Small and medium companies are furthered. The integration of the European Union is furthered by subsidising the poor members and the poor applicants.
  2. The German society decides for a dynamic, mixed economy: Private companies which tend to become monopolies (let's say with a market share of 30 %) are transformed into co-operative societies. Co-operative societies which tend to become shell institutions are transformed into private companies. Since national competences are more and more shifted to the European Union, there is no longer any need for a national administration. People vote for a Free State Bavaria, Free State Saxonia, Katalonia, Breizah, Basque, Scotland, Wales etc. German parliaments are accompanied by Round Tables at every level: neighbourhood, quarter, town, district, region. At the lowest level, everybody can take part who lives there; every level delegates members to the next level. People express their political will by Round Tables; where it differs from the will of the respective parliament, this has to cope with it. The United Nations are transformed into a worldwide police organisation which has to interfere officially wherever people try to solve their problems by force.
  3. Humanity is governed after the principle of self-sustaining and sharing. For example, all ships needed by humanity are produced only in Indonesia, Korea and at the Meyer shipyard at Papenburg. Other products, which are needed in these places, are produced in other regions of the earth.
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