Twenty years ago as the Berlin Wall came tumbling down the bourgeoisie in the west was euphoric, rejoicing at the “fall of communism”. Twenty years later things look very different as capitalism has entered its most severe crisis since 1929. Now a majority in former East Germany votes for the left and harks back to what was positive about the planned economy. After rejecting Stalinism, they have now had a taste of capitalism, and the conclusion drawn is that socialism is better than capitalism.
Internationally, capitalism is emerging from its worst crisis since the 1930s. There is palpable relief in the ranks of the ruling class at avoiding a financial meltdown. However, despite heated talk of green shoots, there is a universal gloom about the current situation.
When Barack Obama was still a candidate in the Democratic primaries, he promised a new era if he were elected. Among his promises for “change,” he said his future administration would be one of the most transparent in history: “an unprecedented level of openness in government".
Some economic commentators and financial journalists have divined the ‘green shoots’ of economic recovery’ growing out of the present crisis. Perhaps the wish is father to the thought. Are they right?