Globalisation and the destruction of the state.

The last quarter of this century saw the beginning of the global installation of the political and economic theory that has been transforming the world, known as neoliberalism. This is a new way of thinking about the economy, where the concept of the market is integrated into all areas of society, reducing state intervention to a minimum.

The fundamental pillars of neoliberalism are privatisation and deregulation, in a process of acceleration and development of the productive forces to impressive levels, but also a wave of expansion and domination of a speculative financial system, establishing growing levels of inequality between developed and underdeveloped countries.

At the national level, this has had dire social effects, such as a failed institutionality of all state powers, with a derivative of authoritarianism to govern.

In the territories, it manifests itself in the normalised installation of urban segregation, which leads to the deterioration, dispersion and fragmentation of life in the cities; the ecological crisis, and the exponential and uncontrolled increase in violence and citizen insecurity; all of which, day by day, makes evident the exponential deterioration in the different ambits of human existence.

Evidence from Chile: The fragmentation of the artisanal sector and the great wealth of the fishing industry.

At the beginning of the year, a former senator was sentenced to five years in prison for bribery and tax fraud in the Corpesca case. The investigation proved illicit acts that involved the political class and where it is evident that big business had a say in the legislative matters to be discussed.

The strongest criticism made of the Fisheries Law, a law involved in this court ruling, is the fragmentation of the fishing quotas given in a large proportion to industrial companies, an example of which is the jack mackerel fishery, which has been left to the fishing industry.

The fishing of jack mackerel, for example, is 90%, between Arica and Palena, for industrial fishing and 10% for artisanal fishing.

The duration of the rights, which is 20 years, is also questioned, with the possibility of successive and easy renewal for another 20 years. These rights, received almost free of charge, are specifically concentrated in the companies belonging to the five fishing conglomerates (Alimar Group, Corpesca, Blumar, Camanchaca, Orizon) that were at the centre of the controversy while the law was being processed, and which belong to the five families catalogued as “owners of the Chilean sea” Angelini, Izquierdo, Yaconi-Santa Cruz, Sarquis, Stengel, Lecaros and Fernández, and whose profits currently amount to billions of dollars in market value thanks to these concessions.

This situation is a concerted action for the concentration of wealth in the hands of a few, to the detriment of the majority, and leaves a significant number of workers with precarious sources of work and at risk of disappearing, and at the same time, it favours the deterioration of the environment, all of which are effects of the neoliberal economic system.

Another case in point: Citizen insecurity grows alongside the alarm business and its derivatives.

In line with technological advances and the constant daily exposure in the media of acts of violence, which amplify the feeling of vulnerability among citizens, the business of alarms, insurance, cameras, drones, etc., and any security system for homes is at its peak. People’s need to feel more secure in their homes explains the sharp increase in demand that has not yet reached its peak.

“Business is booming. Verisure alarm sales have increased by 200% compared to July 2021, reaching more than 20,000 customers with our protection service.

We expect this number to maintain the trend in the coming months,” says the general manager of Verisure Argentina, a provider of monitored alarms for homes and businesses with operations in Europe and Latin America.

However, in Chile, the 2008 alarm register reported 377,457 alarms, 90% of which were false, according to the companies themselves. Then the application in 2012 of the Private Security Law reduced these to 20,600. This excess and some legal impediments hinder the full efficiency of these systems, whose diversity and accessibility also depend on the socio-economic level, reduce the capacity of response to real alerts, leaving us with the permanent question of whether they effectively provide a solution to a real problem or whether they only have a placebo effect whose background is to profit from a human need, a logic of supply and demand very typical of neoliberalism.

A failed state: authoritarian entities and the violation of rights

The social outburst of 2019 brought to light all the permanent social problems that neither the previous governments nor the current one to date have managed to address, let alone resolve. In this context, the questioning of the entities that manage power is eloquent, and especially those involved in unethical issues such as large companies, some political personalities, state or private entities and the armed forces.

The latter are custodians of the security of a country and its people, despite their hierarchical and authoritarian stamp, and one of which is today on the verge of a lawsuit.

On Monday 14, the National Institute of Human Rights, currently headed by Consuelo Contreras, which under the direction of Sergio Micco will unanimously agree to file a lawsuit against the Carabineros’ high command, approved the text of the legal action by seven votes to two.

It indicates that in the period between October 18 and November 19, 2019, police chiefs of the institution, despite being aware of the attacks, violence, threats, harassment and excessive use of force mainly by the Carabineros, did not issue orders that could have put a stop to this action and reduced the physical and moral harm to countless compatriots.

According to the text, the aim is to “comply with the state’s obligations regarding the investigation and condemnation of these serious violations of rights, seeking to prosecute one of the dimensions of criminal responsibility, that of the commanders of the police force, who in the period between 18 October and 19 November 2019 failed to prevent or put an end to the application of unlawful coercion and other treatment, having the necessary power or authority for it to do so or being in a position to do so”.

Generals Mauricio Rodríguez, former head of the Metropolitan Zone; Enrique Bassaletti, former head of the Santiago East Zone; Jorge Ávila, former head of the Public Order Control and Intervention Zone; Jorge Valenzuela, former national director of Police Operations Support; Jean Camus, former director of Logistics; Enrique Monrás, head of the Santiago West Zone, and Hugo Zenteno, former head of the V Valparaíso Zone, plus the former director general Mario Rozas, who received a report with the situations that occurred up to 30 October 2019, are those who the Comptroller’s Office imputed with a set of infractions to the regulations that set the frameworks and protocols of action of this entity.

The presentation of this complaint aims to comply with the state’s obligation to guarantee the exercise and enjoyment of human rights and to comply with the recommendations made by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) regarding the social crisis, in relation to taking all necessary measures to investigate and condemn promptly, adequately and effectively all situations and those responsible for the violation of rights in the context of citizen mobilisation and which are the result of the violent and authoritarian actions of hierarchical and warlike institutions.

Defending the future we want

Based on the above, and after a simple analysis, we can point out that, if it is true that economic prosperity is important for the development of a country and its inhabitants, the installation of a society of money as a central value, with all the concentration of power that it entails, is substantially removed from what citizens demand and require in these times.

Basing the greatness of human beings on their capacity to generate monetary income has progressively increased unhealthy individualism, delinquency in all social strata on different scales, and the competition to win and possess in any way, where inhumanity, greed, avarice and corruption prevail, causing greater inequality, inequity and injustice in our society, which fuels in the conscious population a daily struggle to reverse the evils of the monster called neoliberalism.

The human being must always be the central value of any society. Our call is to change the paradigm of this historical moment, seeking an inflection point that changes the uniform and single-minded globalisation into a globalisation that values the convergence of diversity, thus moving towards a future universal human nation.