Analysis of the Systemic Depression in Today's Western World
Bu yazı 01/02/2023 tarihinde yayınlanmıştır.
*Doç.Dr. Güray ALPAR / SDE Başkanı
Strategy, in a sense, is to establish the connections between events and to make them meaningful and to draw conclusions from them for the future. At this point, as we approach the 2030s, it is thought to be useful to make sense of the events that took place in the last 200 years and that caused the depression.
Depression is a term that expresses the periods in which the individual or society has difficulty in adapting to these conditions as a result of the habits and generally accepted standards not being suitable for the emerging and changing conditions. Depression also includes an emerging sensitivity, sensitivity, mental disorder and depression and crises. The inconsistency between discourses and practices brings inner restlessness and depression. In times of crisis, the perception of security and policies need to be reconsidered.
Security, on the other hand, is about existence as the absence of threat, danger and fear towards values, achievements, and life. At this point, the absence of a threat to the acquired values is within the scope of "objective security", and the absence of any fear of threat against these values is within the scope of "subjective security" (Wolfers, 1952: 480-502). The perception of security is the absence of fear as well as the absence of threat. On the other hand, there is a strong connection between the values that need to be protected and the goals, and the goals of the actors may change over time in terms of benefits (Dedeoğlu, 2003: 8-15). These periods of interest change indicate that security concepts should be reconsidered within the scope of internal and external threats.
It is known that in certain time periods in the world, perhaps due to necessities, inevitable major changes and depressions are experienced. Before and after the 1830s and 1930s is the period when these changes intensified. The events experienced in this period, as we approach the 2030s, clearly bear the signs of another change and, accordingly, the depression.
After the Congress of Vienna (Bloy: 2002), which was gathered as a result of the Napoleonic Wars (Driault: 1919), the changes experienced all over the world are known by everyone. These dates were a new period in which colonial powers took control of almost all continents and marked the beginning of troubles and depressions for those other than the colonial powers. The French Revolution took place between 1789 and 1799. After this, Napoleon crossed all Europe and went as far as Moscow. Europe united against Napoleon and convened the Congress of Vienna after their defeat. The strangest thing is that after this date, those who united against him (England, Russia and France) came together and began to spread freedom ideas together. They started by burning the Ottoman Navy in Navarin. This union of interests was a contradiction. Moreover, on the one hand, while the people of the region they are trying to seize are asked to be liberated and divided with the slogans of fraternity and equality, such thoughts in the areas they colonized were rejected even after the and of World War II.
In the period after 1830, not only in the Ottoman geography, but also; in regions such as Iran and Azerbaijan (Açıkkaya, 2010: 404), India, Africa (Uygur, 2013: 275), China (Ray, 2005: 257), Australia and New Zealand and Argentina (Golosso:1969) created negative changes and difficulties. It was the first of the biggest depression that this system created that would affect the whole world. The system had taken people out completely, and the unlimited income and prosperity of a certain number of people ignored the rest of the world. This system was against the normal flow of life.
The next period was the period of troubles for the world and the depressions created by the system continued. More than 65 million soldiers participated, according to official figures, 9 million of them lost their lives, 22 million were injured, and 8 million were lost and captured (NTV History Magazine, 2009: 21). The “Great Depression” was literally a great economic crisis created by the system and affecting everyone. The crisis affected almost the whole world, world trade declined, created an army of unemployed and homeless in many regions, affected agricultural product prices and rural population, especially farmers, as well as mining and construction sectors (Cochrane, 1958: 43). This depression was called the "Great World Depression".
System crises leading to depressions continued during and after World War II. Due to the income inequality and unfair distribution created in this period, countries such as Somalia had an annual personal income of 118 dollars, while countries with a per capita annual income of 180,000 dollars were created. In the current years, the richest 10 percent of the world earns 52 percent of the global total income, while the poorest 50 percent see or do not see only 8 percent of this income. In 2023, the imbalance has reached such a point that according to Bloomberg data, the 10 richest people in the world, who have almost half the income of the world, have increased their wealth by 402 billion dollars in a year. Some families that are richer than many states, with their incomes exceeding a trillion dollars, hold the banks and some sectors, and determine the course of the policies of the countries.
However, all this also brings some problems. In the aftermath of the Cold War, the unipolar world order and the extreme instability environment that was experienced for a period brought great power poisoning in the sense of overconfidence. In this period, the USA entered the war with the enemy forces that it made up and lost, especially in the Middle East region, in an environment of war that was not likely to win. It was seen that this period full of dilemmas and mistakes was also a period in which inconsistencies were experienced within the societies of the West and societies reached crises within themselves.
This collapse was not seen by the community leaders of the system or was ignored in a state of drunkenness. In a sense, this revealed the sterility and depression of the system in the production of leaders, as in countries such as England. This sterilization and depression were also valid in other areas of society. Difficulties in defining the area of freedom; countries such as Sweden, Germany and France provided the environment they wanted in terms of organization for terror and organized crime, and different definitions of terrorism over "others" made the environment even more incomprehensible. In this period, wrong and right, values and moral mistakes were mixed in the system, and societies along with people became unable to recognize themselves.
In such a mess, on the one hand, the "war on terror" was transformed into "collaboration with terrorism" with the aid of thousands of trucks of weapons and ammunition to terrorist organizations, while on the other hand, respect for ideas and beliefs led to intolerance up to the burning of the holy book of Muslims. Again, with the dilemma arising from the wrong or conscious construction of the system at the beginning, while civilians, women and children were sunk in the seas and left to die in front of the world, deceptions of freedom of opinion for the sake of petty interests and making people slaughter each other could always be kept on the agenda. In short, in such an environment, while people and society went beyond forgetting that they are human and losing their values, it seemed that they did not realize that they had reached the last threshold of an irreversible depression.
The imbalance created for the sake of being civilized seems to have reached such a level that what is done for the sake of obscure nonsense leaves us all in amazement. An all-encompassing alienation and detachment from values symbolizes the trend towards collapse or even explosion, and it's about how much the damage backfires. In the face of the sharp distinctions that are becoming increasingly clear between advances in fields such as science and philosophy and domination, we are almost at the point of rejecting civilization, perhaps like the anarchist and social critic Zerzan (Zerzan, 2004).
In modern society, dissatisfaction, stress, loneliness, depression, and distress, which have reached gigantic proportions, sometimes reach the level of insanity. But as the situation worsens, inquiries increase. Struggles are accelerated by the unjust elimination of people by others. At this point, as Paulo Freire did (Freire, 2018: 43), the unforgivable mistake of not being able to define well those who see those who are harmed by the system as the “other” emerges, and with historical forgetfulness destroying moral and intellectual honesty, in the system called Chomsky's world order those who are exposed to the consequences of the emerging negative power are deprived of suffering by losing their ability to construct the future (Chomsky, 2012: 23).
In such an environment, the superficial misconceptions (Auge, 2012: 29) that the "others" are not so different anymore, due to the inability to understand the depth, also lose their meaning, and when the "global dilemmas" put forward by Brzezinski are added to this (Brzezinski, 2005: 301-317). ), in the last phase of this great depression of the modern world, when it reached a critical point, Guenon's assessment of the “End of Western Civilization” is getting closer to realization (Guenon, 2005:33).
100 years after the structural differences and crisis periods 200 and 100 years ago, as the 2030s approach, the current world system seems to have completely lost its feature in the integration process and each element seems to have completely lost its original independent identity and feature. It is obvious that the joint decision-making system is getting more and more difficult. The interaction and dependence of the system elements with each other has made each of them unrecognizable.
We also know that it is not possible to keep these passive states of the elements completely removed from the system at the same level. This situation clearly led to a “systemic crisis and security problems concerning the whole system”. It is also seen that the third crisis in the last 200 years is much different and serious than the others as a "systemic crisis".
What should be emphasized here is the "Essence", which constitutes the system and its philosophy, and because of the complex structure in the "Essence" and the defect in its creation from the beginning, it invalidates the studies aimed at correction. Within the framework of this essence, even the smallest malfunction in the system formed in circles can gradually expand and turn into impressive problems and crises that arise on a global scale, as in economic crises. While the multinational structures that were created within the failed system without taking these faults into account have become increasingly complex and uncontrollable, it has become increasingly difficult and inextricable to take the entire structure under control.
On the other hand, it is difficult, even impossible, to detect this systemic crisis by the system itself or by someone in the system, and to restore it with minor corrections. In this respect, a structural change and transformation is not considered possible. On the contrary, the "System", besides creating new crises, the duration of which is increasing day by day, may also carry the danger of self-destruction, as in the case of sanctions that return to itself when trying to implement it.
In short, the problems in the social, political, economic and cultural fields have become increasingly chronic and it cannot be hidden from the outside that this unstable structure is about to collapse. We need to be prepared for this situation to emerge more clearly with examples to be experienced in the short and medium term.
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