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This mea­sur­able fever in a per­son infect­ed by the coro­n­avirus reminds me of anoth­er fever, and espe­cial­ly of the words that go with it — “the plan­et is burn­ing”.

Indeed, more than 180 coun­tries are burn­ing with fever and the sacred worl Mar­ket econ­o­my is dis­play­ing a wor­ri­some cough. Entire indus­tri­al sec­tors on hold or bare­ly func­tion­ing, delayed ship­ments of mer­chan­dise, trans­porta­tion by air reduced to essen­tials, increas­ing stock­piles of extract­ed raw materials…I would need entire para­graphs to describe the cap­i­tal­ist econ­o­my sec­tor by sec­tor, in order to detail what finan­cial quar­ters are call­ing “the great­est cat­a­stro­phy since 1929”. Briefly stat­ed, a san­i­tary down­siz­ing.

Has the World fall­en apart for all that? Are we wit­ness­ing a glob­al col­lapse?

Human soci­eties are capa­ble of resilience, and thou­sands of exam­ples of this are appar­ent in over 150 coun­tries. Even inten­sive proders in the food busi­ness, usu­al­ly respon­si­ble for glob­al over­pro­duc­tion and waste because of com­pe­ti­tion, are find­ing local or region­al oppor­tu­ni­ties. Ser­vice indus­tries demon­strate their non-essen­tial char­ac­ter while oth­ers per­form as col­lec­tive goods. Mass tourism has stopped due to con­fine­ment in lux­u­ry hotels, or is becalmed on cruise ships at bay out­side nation­al waters…Here again, these are but a few obvi­ous exam­ples.

What my gen­er­a­tion called the “con­sumer soci­ety” in 1968 and which is noth­ing oth­er than its glob­al­ized cap­i­tal­ist orga­ni­za­tion appears even more grotesque on some screens when an ad for use­less goods appears because it was pro­grammed and paid for… before.

Under gen­er­al­ized con­fine­ment, any obvi­ous rou­tine comes under scruti­ny.

Inverse­ly, fear leads to over­stock­ing and toi­let paper becomes a com­mod­i­ty over which fights break out.

This san­i­tary cri­sis leads to the obser­va­tion of a strong down­turn in the great World Move­ment. It caus­es open con­cern when it involves the pro­duc­tion of phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal mol­e­cules and oth­er essen­tial goods…To such an extent that the min­is­ters of this econ­o­my, sud­den­ly struck by fever, speak of “nec­es­sary sov­er­eign­ties.“

But if I ran a title on tem­per­a­ture it was not in order to make fur­ther devel­op­ments on cap­i­tal­ist orga­ni­za­tion, but to place the san­i­tary cri­sis in par­al­lel with the cli­mate cri­sis.

Why did the first – which will even­tu­al­ly pro­duce less human vic­tims than oth­er past or cur­rent pan­demics – why has it forced to its knees the hap­py glob­al­iza­tion, and why are there no con­cerns over the pre­dic­tions made by sci­en­tists that the world will be total­ly dis­or­ga­nized, human soci­eties in sham­bles along with bio­di­ver­si­ty and all of life itself before the end of the cen­tu­ry.

From one Cli­mate sum­mit to anoth­er con­cern­ing, the answer is always the same “we can’t stop the sys­tem”. Alter­na­tives should only be attempt­ed at home­o­path­ic lev­els so as not to desta­bi­lize the World…Green growth and green Mar­kets, please remain under­cov­er.

It might be amus­ing to repeat the speech­es we have heard a bit every­where since Jan­u­ary con­cern­ing Covid 19 , from top to bot­tom of the polit­i­cal lad­der, and replace the words, epi­dem­ic, coro­n­avirus, fever, by cli­mac­tic change. Issues con­cern­ing CO2 emis­sions would become cas­es of “a mild flu”.

The fact the appear­ance of new virus and their trans­mis­sion to man via the bio­log­i­cal chain has a direct and proven link with the pro­found changes and destruc­tions wrought on bio­di­ver­si­ty; this also can no longer be denied. Such nega­tion­ism is also uncalled for when it comes to the con­se­quences of cap­i­tal­ist pre­da­tion on the grow­ing plan­e­tary fever.

Future gen­er­a­tions will have nei­ther masks nor con­fine­ments to oppose to the cat­a­stro­phy.

And yet we note that this bare­ly occurs to the sup­port­ers of a “world after” which would con­sist of a reboot of the for­mer world but, please note in… a bet­ter ver­sion!

To be continued…

Translation by Renée Lucie Bourges –
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Daniel Fleury
Let­tres mod­ernes à l’Université de Tours. Gros mots poli­tiques… Coups d’oeil politiques…