Mankind Is at a Historical Crossroads Once Again

Aleksandr Shchipkov, 2016

On March 17, we mark the 25th anniversary of the all-union referendum on preservation of the USSR as a renewed federation of equal sovereign republics. What are the lessons to be learned from our recent past?

Five years ago, the question of the future ideology could be attributed to the field of pure futurology. Today, it is filled with specifics and impossible to ignore. A society that does not answer this question runs the risk of being marginalized in history.

It's not just about the findings of experts. Intuitively, this situation is felt by ordinary people. They are disoriented, cannot cope with conflicting information flows or imagine what the world is going to be in a week. All of these are signs of the ideological vacuum. It reveals that the old ideology loses its position, and the new one has not yet appeared. Russian man in the street is familiar with the feeling of dizzy chaos due to the situation of the Soviet Union collapse. In the referendum, a majority (76.43 per cent) voted for its preservation and renewal, but the country crashed. Today, the Western world is in a similar situation, it is on the verge of its own restructuring. Why did this happen?

Liberal monetarism reached the ceiling of its development. The systems based on the economy of loan interest and global dependence has nowhere else to expand. The "center" cannot hold the "periphery". To slow down the growing crisis, increasingly harsh methods of "stabilization" are used, associated with the tightening of social policy, military power, artificial fueling of social, ethnic and religious conflicts – massacres like in the Middle East.

But repressive and power approaches more and more contradict the tenets of modern liberal ideology. Advocacy, national self-determination, the state monopoly on violence – the application of these presumptions is becoming more selective, disproportionate to the situation and ideologically motivated. And it cannot hide from the eyes of people regardless of any "patriotic acts" and the information gap.

This way, a crisis of the neo-liberalism doctrine and the corresponding social model legitimacy emerges.

Today, the development of society follows neither Marx's spiral nor the liberal line, but according to the principle of pendulum. The movement is directed not forward, but back on the historical scale. This phenomenon of historical reverse is still waiting for its researchers. The result of regression is the archaism of the liberal model. Its symptoms are headquarters economy, methods of information control over society, the loss of scientific and critical benchmarks by the mass consciousness, legalization and growth of neo-fascism.

In other words, the same as communism in the twentieth century, the liberalism today turned into a rigid system of political dogmas, coercive behavioral scenarios and rules, in a word – into imposed rigid ideology.

It is already clear that the current global crisis cannot be resolved within the old socio-economic model. The model change automatically means a change of ideology. But the vector of changes can also be directed either forward or backward.

History knows only three political-ideological trends – liberal, conservative and socialist ones. In recent decades, the first one has absorbed the other two. There were various combinations of directions. Inventing a "new ideology", in fact, as experience shows, is reduced to one of these combinations.

Now, during the change of the neo-liberalism ideological paradigm, in my opinion, only one combination is possible – the left-conservative one. In particular, it is due to the fact that other variations and combinations have already been fully played out in official policy. But this is not the only reason.

The ideology of the future cannot be regarded as an abstraction isolated from the related economic factors. We should keep in mind that the economic base of liberal capitalism will be lost in the relatively near future, and that will lead to a paradigm shift. In the absence of the global debt economy built on the principle of pyramid (dependence of the periphery on the center), new institutions will have to solve fundamentally different problems, and the states will have to rely on their own strength instead of the capital and resources importation from the periphery. The question of state control over the business and fair distribution of wealth will be raised.

Such a model will require egalitarian ideology gravitating to socialism and social democracy with a strong vertical of power. However, to justify this "new statism", a new system of values will be needed instead of the old one associated with the Soviet model of socialism. And this system should be built on the basis of tradition to counter the rise of the far-right trend, which claims to be the heir of liberalism. In this situation, only one option remains: values of apostolic Christianity, which justified a welfare state and a just society of new type.

In fact, today's choice is a choice between the two future scenarios: neo-fascist and Christian-social (for Europe). The question is where the society will swing to after the failure of the liberalism – to the left or to the right?

Today we are at a historical crossroads. There is a struggle between the old neo-liberal world, which is rapidly archaizing, trying to save itself and be reborn in a form of neo-fascism, and the Christian world, which is capable of creating a fair egalitarian society in the near future. The choice is ours.