“Trudeau’s ‘Gamble’” in Renewal Update is a very good article which goes right to the heart of the problem as to why the various factions of the ruling class are unable to make accurate predictions in the current political and economic situation which this same ruling class has fostered.
The ability to plan is what has separated human beings from the animal world (which at best only possess it to a rudimentary level). The great breakthroughs that humans made in developing agriculture and animal husbandry are all based on prediction. Similarly, the great advances in science and technology have served that purpose. Yet, in this era, it is precisely this power of prediction which has been so disdained by the ruling class and its pundits and intellectuals who deride what they derisively call social engineering, central planning, socialism, etc. and worship at the feet of the “market economy” and the anarchy of production. Any attempt to overall plan in a serious way, they say, will end up in disaster. Instead, let market forces, private interests and neo-liberal principles rule.
So, with a few exceptions, they have by and large succeeded throughout the world in entrenching neo-liberal thinking. The result is economic and political chaos and a profound feeling of anxiety and unease amongst the people. People worry about climate change and other looming environmental problems, job security, retirement living standards, health care, etc. They feel that the future is not in their hands at all.
Predictability and the mechanisms and systems to bring that predictability about lie at the centre of the solutions. As the article points out, the key element is to be able to participate in arriving at the decisions which affect our lives and have control over our futures. The power of prediction is directly related to that control.
The issue of prediction and its implications is very important in the fields of politics and the economy. And it is very important in the fields of theory and ideology. The neo-liberal ideological offensive has been very important for the “victory” of neo-liberalism in the world and has been one of its strongest points, permeating economics, politics, culture, philosophy, etc. But, paradoxically, it is also its weakest point, especially as this neo-liberal world descends into more chaos and nightmare and its depraved and anti-human essence emerges. In these uncertain, anxious times, people want more predictability, certainty and planning in their lives and society and need new forms to empower them.
The article “Trudeau’s Gamble” is an excellent opening up of the topic of “predictability” and clearly explains why the ruling class is having such difficulty in this sphere.
Letter to the Editor in Renewal Update, N. 35, September 28, 2021
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