Friday, March 27, 2009

Abortion, Euthanasia and Capitalism

Ana Solano, Professor of Medicine. University of Seville

Enriched countries do not allow the demographic growth necessary for economic transition in impoverished countries, since poverty is intended to be reduced by killing poor people instead of by changing the present economic model.

Demographic pressure over impoverished countries is a problem for enriched countries that seek to plunder their resources. Impoverished countries have, though do not possess, large quantities of raw materials: energetic (gas, oil…), biological (forests, fertile soils, biodiversity…), mineral (minerals and precious stones…) along with political conditions that allow labour exploitation even to the degree of slavery, despoliation of nature and pollution of the environment. When labour conflicts or civil unrest occurs in countries with a desperate and starving population, multinational companies can encounter difficulties to pillage these countries.

Therefore, the need to gain demographic control has actually become genocide: millions of deaths, mostly women and children, is the annual result of more than 70 armed conflicts worldwide; 100 million aborted children per year; 85% of the world’s population doomed to endure destitution and starvation, dying of illnesses which are scientifically curable; 400 million slave children with a very low life expectancy; 1,500 million unemployed people; torture; death penalty; … Moreover, this information does not include figures corresponding to mass sterilisation campaigns, which fall under “reproductive health.”

In Europe, demographic transition over the last two centuries has resulted in a marked decrease in death rate, which in its turn caused natural population increase to rise. Later, birth rate also decreased spontaneously – before the last drastic and artificial reduction – and population equilibrium between births and deaths was reached.

However, impoverished countries are prevented from experiencing this transition because this happens in parallel to economic development. Birth decrease does not result in higher economic development, as we are meant to believe; development brings about a reduction in birth and death rates, even though the former may take place later in time, limiting the natural population increase.

In Spain, all the parliamentary political parties have approved of abortion, and every government has expanded its use, to such an extent that nowadays in practice it has actually become a contraceptive method. The number of annual abortions in Spain has increased to more than 100.000. The way we think is the way we live; we enjoy a 23.000 euro annual per capita income, resulting from pillaging 82% of the world’s resources. Then, it is hardly surprising that we justify a culture of death. We have accepted to build our welfare on the deaths of the impoverished.

Besides, and for the same reason, the culture of our modern society shows blatant disregard for religious values, philosophical and historical references, even for scientific thought; technological dogmatism, along with its utilitarianism and efficiency, have become the utmost value. This anthropological reductionism converts every human problem into a technical one, and all the possible technical solutions are considered to be good.

At the other extreme of life, we see the world population has aged as a result of a decrease in birth rate, especially in enriched countries. The growing number of elderly people calls for structural and cultural changes that can integrate them. However, the violent, destructive, utilitarian and fiercely competitive culture of the Empire does not allow them.

The same as with the impoverished, its option is to get rid of the weakest, to put the blame on the victims. Just like in the case of poverty, which is intended to be reduced by killing poor people instead of changing the economic model, problems of aging population are intended to be solved by killing old people; and this policy can apply to any kind of weakness and limitation.

We emphatically state that it is hypocritical to object to abortion or euthanasia and to accept the present political and economic model generated by this culture of death, which upholds every assault on life. “We are in fact faced by an objective conspiracy against life", or by “a war of the powerful against the weak,” quoting Evangelium Vitae. This is the true scale of the problem, and any reductionism contributes to sustaining and exacerbating it.

We have already published more than one manifesto titled: “we reject abortion because we are left-wing,” specifying that: “it is not that we reject abortion and we are left-wing but that it is because we are left-wing that we reject it.” We therefore condemn a fake left leadership, which holding power betrays and makes demagogic use of the culture of the poor, clearly revealed in their historical fight for the dignity of every human life.

There have been many super-capitalist regimes worldwide that have legalised abortion. People, such as Robert McNamara, have goaded abortion acceptance. They have imposed it as something convenient for multinational capitalist dominance. Hitler rejected it for his aria "race" but enforced it for those under his rule.

However, there have also been many testimonies such as Elizabeth Cady Stanton, who classified abortion as a form of infanticide in 1868 in the suffrage newspaper “The Revolution”: "When we consider that women are treated as property, it is degrading to women that we should treat our children as property to be disposed of as we see fit."