Skip to main content

Why ideals propagated by even IT moguls are rooted in archaic feudal structures

By Bhabani Shankar Nayak* 
It is natural to think that the progress of science, technology, and the democratic practices of secular nation-states would put an end to primitive cultures characterized by fear, violence, feudalism, patriarchy, religious conflicts, reactionary thoughts, and all forms of inequality and exploitation. However, everyday realities reveal the exact opposite. 
The progressive characteristics of anti-colonial, anti-imperialist, and anti-feudal democracies have transformed into Westphalian democracies led by market forces during the era of globalization. The era has globalised all forms of inequalities and exploitations. This transformation has resulted in the rise of reactionary nationalism, religious, ethnic, and resource conflicts. 
The catastrophic climate crises and the threat of nuclear wars seem increasingly real. Reminiscent of colonial practices involving plunder, partitions, and apartheid systems are not merely confined to the peripheries of Asia, Africa, and Latin America but are also prevalent in the capitalist cores of America and Europe.
The Lockean heartland of capitalism, Europe, is facing multiple crises fuelled by imperialist wars and nationalist conflicts. From Brexit to the Ukraine war, Europe exemplifies the fallacies of capitalist consolidation, political stability, and economic growth. It is not capitalist freedom but fear and violence defines everyday life in Europe today.
The normalization of archaic forms of mass violence led by various states and governments, as well as organized and unorganized terrorist groups, represents the bleakest manifestation of a primitive society in the twenty-first century. 
The ideals of democracy, egalitarian citizenship rights, and universal values of labour and human rights have been buried by Westphalian market democracy in pursuit of capitalist consolidation for profit. The history of capitalism reveals that the pantheons and pathogens of capitalism are opposed to universal and internationalist ideals of justice and humanity, wherein both living and non-living beings coexist in harmony with nature.
The legalization of plunder under the guise of economic free zones and public-private partnerships, along with the lawlessness driven by power and profit, defines governance led by states and governments that defend capitalism and its market forces. This defense comes at the cost of marginalizing citizens and their citizenship rights. 
The plunder, resulting deaths, and the ensuing destitution in the name of sovereignty and nation-states are becoming existential threats to both people and the planet. The assaults on reason, science, secularism, democracy, and peace are becoming increasingly universal, fostering a landscape where religions thrive with the decline of harmony, human values, and lives.
The politically correct prisms of intersectional idealism have aided in understanding various layers of individual identities, yet they have undermined collective identities necessary for collective emancipation from both old and new forms of feudalism, capitalism, and imperialist values and practices. 
The pantheons of market culture have fostered the growth of self-centered, pleasure-driven, and unfiltered mass consumerism, where life is defined by commodities and the progress is measured through the recycling of the 'self' and 'the other.' These arbitrary divisions reduce marginalization to one's personal pain and pleasure.
The collective punishment of the masses by capitalism and imperialism becomes secondary or meaningless in the pursuit of individual 'self-pleasure.' The traumas of wars, religious and ethnic genocides, regional and resource conflicts have turned into distant experiences for 'others' or considered as fate-deserving individual experiences. Death and destitution become gifts and are celebrated as individual sacrifices of veterans and victims alike en masse. Suffering is personalized, while dreams are nationalized.
This perverse and distorted discourse dehumanizes lives on the planet, treating them as mere numbers in the grand game of imperialist geopolitics, all to maintain capitalism as an unquestionable and universal system of governance, destroying any form of sustainable alternatives.
Narayana Murthy advocates work schedule of 70-80 hours per week. Is it for national development of growth of corporate profit?
Despite scientific progress and technological innovations, the fundamental underpinnings of imperialism's pantheons and capitalism's pathogens remain unchanged. Medieval feudalism has morphed into technological feudalism without altering the ideological foundations of feudal systems. 
Infosys Chairman NR Narayana Murthy is advocating for a work schedule of 70 hours per week and 12 hours per day in the name of national development. The growth of corporate profit is not national development. It is called corporate dominance over lives, liberties and individual happiness. The ideals propagated by IT moguls like Murthy are rooted in the archaic structures of feudalism, where workers' rights were non-existent, and their lives were consumed by work until death.
Similarly, capitalism has utilized science for its advancement without fostering scientific thoughts in society. Scientific consciousness contradicts the interests of capitalism, as scientific knowledge promotes collective consciousness, whereas religion fosters individual realization. Consequently, capitalism has historically formed alliances with religious and reactionary forces throughout its existence. Religion and nationalism persist as the twin pillars of capitalism, offering temporary relief to the inherent crises within the system.
Organized hypocrisy, plunder, and lawlessness define the pantheons and pathogens of capitalism in all its forms. The ambiguities surrounding freedom, the American dream of prosperity, market-driven democracy, narrow individualism, and unrestrained consumerism expose the unsightly realities of capitalism, which fosters all forms of violence to govern society through fear. 
Religion plays a role in solidifying fear within the individual and community lives across the globe. These dubious narratives shape both the objective and subjective conditions of lives, states, and societies around the world.
Developing alternatives based on reactionary regional or nationalist lines is not a viable path. Capitalism, along with all its processes, structures, and cultures, is inherently global. The fact that it operates differently in various regions does not imply the existence of different forms of capitalism or the presence of democratic capitalism. Therefore, alternatives to capitalism need to dismantle all forms of its pantheons and pathogens by offering a class struggle embedded with peace and internationalism.
*University of Glasgow, UK



'Modi govt's assault on dissent': Foreign funds of top finance NGO blocked

By Rajiv Shah  In a surprise move, the Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India, has cancelled the foreign funding license of the well-known advocacy group, Centre for Financial Accountability (CFA), known for critically examining India's finance and banking sectors from human rights and environmental angle.

Misleading ads 'manipulate, seduce, lure' to market unhealthy harmful food

By Our Representative  The Nutrition Advocacy in Public Interest (NAPI) in its new report “50 Shades of Food Advertising” has sought to expose how seductive, luring, manipulative or deceptive these advertisements can be. Consequences of such advertising are increased intake of unhealthy food products that is associated with obesity and diabetes, it says. 

A Hindu alternative to Valentine's Day? 'Shiv-Parvati was first love marriage in Universe'

By Rajiv Shah*   The other day, I was searching on Google a quote on Maha Shivratri which I wanted to send to someone, a confirmed Shiv Bhakt, quite close to me -- with an underlying message to act positively instead of being negative. On top of the search, I chanced upon an article in, imagine!, a Nashik Corporation site which offered me something very unusual. 

Swami Vivekananda's views on caste and sexuality were 'painfully' regressive

By Bhaskar Sur* Swami Vivekananda now belongs more to the modern Hindu mythology than reality. It makes a daunting job to discover the real human being who knew unemployment, humiliation of losing a teaching job for 'incompetence', longed in vain for the bliss of a happy conjugal life only to suffer the consequent frustration.

'Failure of governance': India, China account for 54% pollution-related deaths globally

By Vikas Parsaram Meshram*   A recent report jointly prepared by UNICEF and the independent research organization Health Effects Institute has been released, and the statistics within it are alarming. It states that in 2021, air pollution caused the deaths of 2.1 million Indians, including 169,000 children who hadn't yet fully experienced life. These figures are indeed distressing and raise questions about why there hasn't been more serious effort in this direction, putting policymakers to shame. 

Over 3.8 billion animals at risk: India on crossroad in animal welfare practices

By Rupali Soni*  In a collaborative effort, the India Animal Fund and Dasra have unveiled their report , "Our Shared Future | Securing Animal Welfare, Human Wellbeing, and Sustainability in India." This landscape report provides a thorough overview of animal welfare and underscores its indispensable role within India's socio-economic and ecological frameworks. It also illustrates how animal welfare is intricately intertwined with public health, labor welfare, and climate resilience.

August 9 to be observed as Corporates Quit India day: Top farmers' group

By Our Representative A recent general body meeting of the Samyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM), the top farmers' organisation, stated hat "there is no need for any illusion of change in the pro-corporate policies of the BJP-NDA government" following the recent elections in which BJP failed to achieve even simple majority. It insisted,  Prime Minister Narendra Modi "is hell bent" to continue 'business as usual' policies.

Maharashtra govt's proposed bill may be used against 'dissenting' journalists, writers, filmmakers, artists

Counterview Desk  The People’s Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL), Maharashtra, strongly objecting to what it calls “repressive and unconstitutional” Maharashtra Special Public Security Bill 2024, has demanded the proposed law be scrapped in its entirety. In its Statement of Objects and Reasons for the Bill, PUCL noted,  the broad and non-descript label of ‘urban naxal’ has been used, which is actually a “common slur used for any citizen who expresses their opposition to state policy or is not aligned with right-wing majoritarian views."

Belgian report alleges MNC Etex responsible for asbestos pollution in Madhya Pradesh town Kymore: COP's Geneva meet

By Our Representative A comprehensive Belgian report has held MNC Etex , into construction business and one of the richest, responsible for asbestos pollution in Kymore, an industrial town in in Katni district of Madhya Pradesh. The report provides evidence from the ground on how Kymore’s dust even today is “annoying… it creeps into your clothes, you have to cough it”, saying “It can be deadly.”