Last week's  Russell Brand interview was politically significant.

When Russell Brand declared to interviewer Jeremy Paxman that capitalism was destroying the planet and it was time for a revolution, he ignited a wave of discussion and debate that has, via the internet, spanned the globe.

Far too used to playing games with ineffectual  and conservative 'social democratic' leaders like Ed Miliband, Barack Obama and our own David 'socialism is not a word I use' Cunliffe, the defenders of capitalism have also been quick to attack Brand. 

Interviewer Jeremy Paxman, who thinks the parliamentary process gives capitalism some of political legitimacy, got in the first shot. He described Brand as 'a very trivial man' which earned him a fair dollop of the comedian's trademark sarcasm. Conservative Party MP Michael Fabricant felt compelled to go on Twitter and describe him as a 'twat'. Fabricant didn't like the message so he tried to shoot the messenger instead. He ended up looking like an idiot.

But Brand has intuitively reflected the views of a growing constituency who have worked out that capitalism and its political representatives are never going to deliver the goods that its advertising and public relations arm continually promise. What is being offered is not the promised land but a wasteland.

This largely - but not entirely - young population are faced with a world of few jobs, degraded jobs, crippling debt, poverty, uncertain futures, an environment being ripped apart by the rapacious demands of the corporations.

This is a politically disenfranchised generation betrayed by a representative democracy that is neither representative or democratic. The huge number of people who now no longer vote is, as Brand has also noted, not apathy but a rejection of this corrupt system.

A hundred years ago Rosa Luxemburg wrote that the choice was either socialism or barbarism and Brand, whether he knows it or not, has rephrased the choice for a new generation seeking a new world.

While establishment media figures will, and have, described Brand as some kind of wild-eyed utopian, that's not what the people that Brand represents are saying. They're ready for a fight.

In 1968 they cried 'be realistic, demand the impossible!'. In 2013 we should be demanding everything.


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