The cathedral of capital: Why the West is fruitlessly prolonging the war in Ukraine while stoking war in the South China Sea

Why? Why must so many die and so little be achieved? It makes so little sense to me, but I am beginning to grasp the reasons for the disgraceful behaviour of western countries, elites, academics, and countless supporters of the Ukraine’s bloody imitation of resistance movements in ages gone by. I think it has to do with one thing: money.

Ely Cathedral, whose belltower came crashing down in 1322, shortly after 4 am.

See, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is not advantageous to the rich, but forfeiting the gains of marketing eastern Europe is plainly disadvantageous to the ‘civil oligarchs’ who dominate western democracies, from America to Britain to Germany. Meanwhile, the gains of financialising China would be sacrificed if Trump’s trade war were escalated and proper alliances were forged with Russia, Japan, and other Asian countries intent on containing China from consuming southeast Asia and some of the most vital trade routes on planet Earth. A little attention is given to the deleterious impact of sanctions on Russia, but this is nothing compared to the possible effects of a Chinese blockade of Indonesian straits adjacent to the Indian Ocean and South China Sea. Trillions of dollars worth of oil flow through those shipping lanes. If it comes to war, may the gods have mercy on us all. Money deludes us about the conditions for moneymaking; in this way, it is a snake that eats its own tail — to pursue money alone is to lose money in the long term.

I have previously speculated that Curtis Yarvin’s concept of the Cathedral is incomplete, or even conspiratorial. But I think the original version as formulated by Yarvin has the grain of something more accurate, by way of the theory that market competition leads us away from political truth towards profiteering delusion and mimicry. The Cathedral of Capital is the ideological superstructure of today’s bourgeois political economy, aided by neoliberal deregulation of markets, a process which has accelerated China’s violent rise and Russia’s violent decline in equal measure. America is caught in the middle of this change of the guard of competing great powers with claims to the iron throne. All the while, the White Walker-style threat of climate change looms ever larger.

Money has corrupted our conscience, our society, our very humanity. It has made us lethargic and complacent. We are aggressive towards countries we should be allying with (Russia), and we are complacent about real threats to world peace (China). The end of this will be a China emboldened by Russian oil and African cash, with growing alliances across east Asia and an ongoing stranglehold on the American-based financial system. Almost every news article, every policy decision, and every political viewpoint — with the noble exceptions of Trump’s trade war and the realist tradition of geopolitical economy — tend towards this collective delusion, this dreamlike state in which we are imprisoned.

The cathedral of capital means only one thing: there is blood on our hands. We are complicit in a system which we refuse to challenge, and will do anything to defend — even if that means sacrificing our very essence as human beings. What have we done?

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