Antibiotics, vaccines and pandemic

The growing concerns of the subjectivities of the necessity of the capitalist mode of production.

English translation of Antibiotici, vaccini e pandemia

Noi non abbiamo patria

What about medical progress? On January 21th an article appeared in The Economist describing a truly alarming content (and also with some chauvinistic accents towards the Asian countries). The so-called capitalist progress, whose development of value accumulation involved technical progress and improvement of living conditions, albeit in an unequal and combined way, now comes back like a boomerang with all the nefarious contradictions reinforced by this mode of production. The resilience of life to bacterial or viral diseases and pathogens is in decline. What has been prepared by decades of scientific medical progress is no longer producing the desired results and indeed appears to be itself a contributing factor and origin of a new health emergency.

from The Economist Drug-resistant infections kill almost 1.3m people a year

Healthcare organizations in Pakistan, India and Bangladesh are facing bacterial infections that are more resistant to antibiotic and antimicrobial drugs with fatal outcomes. But the causes are these same antibiotics and antimicrobials used in agriculture or in intensive farming that have produced super bacteria carried by super bugs that are truly resilient to the drugs that treated fatal diseases for humans in the 50s, 60s and 70s years and now they are no longer saving lives like they used to. Bacterial infections already known from decades of medical experience appear decidedly more resistant to antibiotics, resulting in a fivefold health commitment for hospital and pharmacological treatments, and a large number of unexpected deaths. The article explains the scale of this new health emergency, which is currently causing more than 1.3 million deaths a year especially in Central Asia and Southeast Asia, with the forecast that this figure could reach the threshold of 13 million deaths a year on a global scale in the coming years.

The time of the coronavirus coincides with the precipitate of a general lower physiological resilience of the immune system of the capitalist man to all pathologies. It is a fact, in fact, that even if we wanted to doubt the existence of a covid19 pandemic (with still undefined and currently indefinable mortality rates), the pandemic tragedy underway is certainly for all causes, whose death rates are really high and on the rise. Not only a new viral disease, but also the known bacterial infections that attack the respiratory, gastrointestinal and renal systems that were once treatable through antibiotic therapy, have become more serious due to a super bacterium that strenuously are more resistant to the drug therapies.

In this scenario of resurgence of pathologies, including those that were believed to be now solvable with a routine medical protocol, the way in which the capitalist mode of production deals with what is called a covid19 pandemic can only be what it is in its forms and bankruptcy in its result. For this reason, entrusting health under the protection of the accumulation of value does not give any way out, defending the vaccine or opposing it is nothing more than the representation of the historical difficulty of the proletariat in conceiving itself and the defense of its general condition if not as part of capital, a conception that only the catastrophic path of the capitalist mode of production can demolish.

The coronavirus pandemic is only one of the phenomena of the lesser physiological resilience of capitalist man to pathogenic elements, while economic, social relations and the organization of societies are by far the main precipitators and precipitators of this emergency. Biological life and that of the historical social man have adapted to environmental changes with a certain dialectical harmony towards the use of natural resources over thousands of years. The activities of the productive man have represented in the historical course one of the increasingly decisive elements in the changes of the natural ecosystem. Over the centuries, the productive relationship on how man exploits the resources of the earth, in agriculture and livestock has led to gradual changes in the sustainable macro and micro biological world, and with it the biological immune system has had time to adapt to the changes caused. But the return to that macro biological world is no longer possible, nature as it was at the beginning of the prehistory of productive man no longer exists everywhere. In the last three centuries capitalist man in particular has given an acceleration of these changes through the impressive increase in productivity for the purpose of the necessity of an increasing accumulation of the total capitalist social value. The speed of the impact and change on the ecosystem constituted by the productive relationship with nature has made difficult the natural adaptive process of life to the new environmental landscape shaken by capitalism, the natural adaptation of the immune system cannot keep up with the speed with which capitalist productivity unfolds except through the aid of a doped physiology.

Medical science has therefore set itself the aim of ensuring above all to the ruling classes a more specialized care prevention and care treatment within the new economic and social relations, but at a certain point it had to extend health and care measures to the laborer classes relieving them from deficient hygienic and sanitary conditions to renew and strengthen the vital capacity of the commodity labor workforce from which capitalism extracts its value. In fact, medical science has found itself in the need to bridge the speed gap between the development of accumulation and the process of physiological adaptation to the changed ecosystem through modern pharmacology and biomedicine. Just as GMOs seemed to be the key to increasing productivity in agriculture and therefore fighting hunger in India, Mexico, the far eastern Asia and the world, the development and production of antibiotic and antibacterial goods have represented the flagship of capitalist progress heralded to peoples as regards the enhanced well-being of human life, making certain pathologies less and less fatal. The Capitalist development can cure everything and find the cure for every kind of pathology: this is the triumphant declamation of the dominant ideology under its variegated secular or religious nuances.

But any progress of any productive activities of capitalist man observed in the long term period and at the global scale, it appears more and more an ideological falsification from the point of view of social and general well-being inside the capitalistic relations. The repercussions for certain vital dysfunction begin to have a severe impact on the highly industrialized and developed world as well . The current inability of the antibacterial drug to counteract the new enhanced bacteria is the result of the production of that commodity used intensively in agriculture, breeding and doping of the human body over a long, decades-long, phase of the capitalistic accumulation of value process. The antibiotic and antimicrobial substance itself has become the source of a new problem at the end of this cycle.

In fact, it is no coincidence that we are witnessing a significant and sudden increase in mortality for all causes in the world compared to the average of previous close years. Depending on the new capitalist geography, the increase of death toll rate is three-digit percentages in certain capitalist areas. In Europe it is estimated that the average increase of mortality between 2020 and 2021 was 80% higher and in the EU the increase was 30%. But in some specific districts of the capitalistic value chain, for example in the province of Bergamo, the death toll had an excess of deaths for all causes of 570% during the period between February and April of 2020 compared to the average for the same period of months of the years from 2015 to 2019. In the North American continent (Canada and the United States) the increase in the mortality rate is around 40%, but in New York between March and May 2020 the increase in deaths for all the causes was 800%. Asia itself, whose centralized rational organization, via a socialist state or via a liberal democratic state, would have kept covid19 at bay (whose virus has the ability to be pandemic is precisely due to the fact that it in itself is far less lethal of SARS or EBOLA), yet some rough data (which does not include China) would record a three-digit increase in all-cause mortality. Singapore, declared by the WHO the most virtuous country in the world in combating covid19 through preventive and organized lockdowns and which has recorded a mortality from covid19 equal to 0.2% and has already achieved the third vaccination dose on more than 40% of the population, the increase in all-cause mortality was 20% higher (out of a population that is just over 5.5 million). And Singapore is not a small backward state, is one of the top five major financial centers in the world. Then, it is impossible to determine where the covid19 ends and where the slaughter begins for the collapse of the entire system that the coronavirus has only aggravated.

Against the data analyzed, the same statistic roughly calculates an oscillation between 12.2 and 22.9 million of excess deaths more than the averages of the years prior to 2020 (the trend is calculated also considering 2021 confirming the increase of the death tolls even compared to 2020 alone in many countries). It is necessary to be aware that the statistic science in this society cannot provide a given objective data, that it usually describes the phenomena by extending the averages also for the countries and / or localities whose data are not received or not available, and it judges that if a circumstance occurred in place X and its phenomenon incidence will probably be more or less the same in place Y not too much far way or within 100km or 500km away, or which has similar economic characteristics. The impossibility of having a social organization that allows a precise observation of social phenomena (because this society cannot achieve it as long as it is determined by economic necessity and not by a rational plan), the analytical result can only provide a statistical view by means of a shortcut. This is the same historical method that led to the calculation after more than 70 years about the death count of the previous world spanish flu pandemic of 1918-1920 [see note 1]. In fact, the movement of capital accumulation is unequal and combined and a certain caution should always be maintained when analyzing a certain social phenomenon (because an epidemic is first and foremost a product of social organization) in the short term, when we do summing up according to weighted averagestandard deviationweighted deviation and deviation for frequency classes and other statistical algorithms. In any case it is evident that, now as a hundred years ago, we are faced with the coming to the surface on the level of nature and on the level of the physiology of living organisms of the whole precipitate of at least three centuries of capitalism progress.

This is why the States, representing the variegated and competing set of capitalistic forces, cannot but implement irrational and contradictory contrasting health policies, which in turn determine the worsening of the conditions of proletarian life and health. This is why science tout court has been contradicting itself continuously for two years until now. This is why we are witnessing the ballet of figures, consequences, statistics and not least the statement on January 11, 2022 by the WHO that anti covid19 vaccines need to “elicit immune responses that are broad, strong, and long-lasting in order to reduce the need for successive booster doses”, while the disease itself caused by the sars-cov-2 in fact it is not studied at all as it would be necessary (for example, in Italy out of 130 thousand and more deaths less than 8000 medical records were analyzed, while the autopsies performed on the deceased for the virus and those for sudden illnesses after the vaccination were almost zero).

This is why therapy begins to prove ineffective towards epidemic spread, social therapy even worse than the pathogenic disease itself. This is why the vaccination of entire generations of children in this scenario of general crisis of the capitalist mode of production could represent a catastrophe on the general physiology compromised for the generations to come, whose acceptance of the risk to cure the immediate not caring of future generations represents the highest degree of the individualism of capitalism in its imperialist phase.

Because the general crisis of the capitalist mode of production – in which humanity finds itself entangled – cannot longer guarantee the resilience of its living conditions to capitalism itself, which is also compromising the habitability of this planet for life. The historical movement, which should have become antagonistic to capitalism according to the forecasts of the 19th and 20th centuries, in fact exercised the conflict as a defense weapon and as part of capital itself. In the time of the coronavirus , despite an initial mass scream, we are witnessing, in Europe and in the most highly industrialized and high-financial-volume countries, most of the proletariat and workers assign one of their latest “workers’ rigidities” remained, which is the protection of the health, to the restart of the accumulation based on vaccination shield and sanitary discipline requirements. If this happens, it is not due to some ability of a convincing conspiracy plan on pandemic meme deliberately conspired by certain forces of capital. While capital goes crazy in coming to terms with its determined relationship, two centuries have consolidated in human generations that capitalist progress has nevertheless guaranteed widespread health and well-being, and in any case is the best precondition for humanity. Exploited humanity and the proletariat cannot but react by undergoing the strategy according to the needs of capital passively, or some strata of it are heading towards a flight and towards the hope of a formal return of the capitalistic relations of production ex ante facto, and denying the crisis itself.

We are witnessing the destruction, blow by blow, of the overall conditions for the reproduction of proletarian life as an expropriated worker but also of life itself. This catastrophic course of the crisis which is very painful for the proletarian and racialized bodies is not painless for capital itself.

In the United States of America in the weeks leading up to George Floyd’s assassination, a growing number of essential workers in global logistics chains, the GIG economy and slaughterhouses struggled unpaired and isolated for the protection of their own health and of their communities by denouncing a state that left them at the mercy of the free market without implementing any emergency protocol. Behind the apparent renewed delegation to the temporarily negligent institutions, immediately afterwards we witnessed a clear reversal of this conflicting delegation towards the state about the social health protection. The destruction of the Minneapolis third precinct, the prelude to the renewed black revolution in the United States of America against the systemic racism of capitalism, the market, the private property and the violence of the state, the spontaneous mass mobilization of the black and multiracial proletariat had to subvert irresponsibly and for necessity” all the measures of containment and contrast to the virus spread imposed by the individual states of the United States of America, because those were hindering the unfolding of the struggle.

From the end of November 2021 until these first days of 2022, as part of the black and proletarian multiracial insurgency, the rebellion of the former slaves of Guadalupe against the new neo-colonial aggression made by France and by Macron’s government which extends to the former colony the imposition of the vaccination passport. The blacks of the Antilles rightly perceive it as such and shake the small island with generalized strikes to the bitter end, blockades of production, transports and most of the capitalist relations and businesses. And how many other rebellions of poor peasants, land workers, proletarians, workers without stock, women oppressed by a renewed capitalist patriarchy (included the recent Kazakistan uprising), that have spread to the whole world in the last two years, with the same pacing of the coronavirus mutation, where it is the commodified use of the earth’s resources biting the essential conditions of the life subsistence?

Faced with the chronic therapeutic plan of capitalism that fails in its purpose of protecting the physiology of man, a return to a natural life, to healthy cultivation and to a cure based on medical herbs of the forest is not possible (albeit new radical attitudes in feeding and in self-care have long emerged with pejorative results for the immediate health of individuals). Even half measures hoped for a more preventive and less pharmacological centric medicine is not applicable to the mass scale in the context of capitalist society. Because here the contradiction that is just opening up in the coronavirus era is the unraveling of the growing and vertical incompatibility of the reproduction of the conditions of life with the capitalist mode of production as a result determined by a long historical cycle of uncontested progress. The emergence of this crisis opens deep fractures in the solid and unitary crust of the production of value, which, as defeated in 1900 century, we considered impermeable and elastic to any crisis. This new reality would imply that it would be necessary to avoid any form of sectarianism or indifference about what is contradictorily expressed in the form of conflict and as a conscientious objection to the health regulations imposed by governments. In fact, it makes no sense to indicate to the proletarians who oppose emergency health measures, that the man and the worker to get by it can do nothing but satisfy its own needs through the commodity exchange of its labor force with the capitalist commodities. Highlighting the real superiority of the capitalist commodity over pre-capitalist societies makes no sense when, in the test of facts, the practical evidence begins to manifest that the commodity will never feed and take care humanity. One cannot remain indifferent and sectarian, waiting for a plan of the ideal struggle that does not exist, in Guadalupe or in the new suburbs of the imperialist metropolis. One cannot do even when the practical proletarian action, resulting from its suffering, risks to slip into the wake of an anti historical and impossible return to a past capitalism more liberal, or when it remains under the yoke of this contradictory and anarchic therapeutic plan, that are both two faces of the difficulty to break the reactionary conservation of the present state of things that is running towards the catastrophe.

The trend of the sudden increase in the excess for all-causes deaths is the physiological signal of the historic trend drop in the rate of profit. As in the past, this tendency of mortality growing rates marks the general crisis of a system. Through the faults of this crisis an unprecedented conflict is unleashed starting with the radicalism of the blacks, of the racialized, which is not a generic black revolution prelude, it is a condensation of multiracial proletarian rebellion that is also shattering the privilege and whiteness of the proletarians in the white skin, shakes the metropolis and bites the working masses ankles. The historical movement of the capitalist mode of production is coming to our aid and not in the form of medical treatment.


[1] In reconsidering the death toll for the Spagnola in Russia, the historical scientists considered the official mortality recorded, which was previously registered as the 0.2% of the Russian population at the time, to be untrue. Laura Spinney in her 1918 book: The Spanish Flu – The Pandemic That Changed the World writes : “ If the data were correct, Russia would have the lowest death rate in Europe, which seems counterintuitive in a country in the grip of the civil war, where all the infrastructures of daily life had collapsed .. “. The perplexity of historians is legitimate. In fact, in considering the case of Odessa, a city on the Black Sea of Russian– speaking Ukraine, that was already developed industrially and socially advanced for the time with an adequate hospital infrastructures since the early 1900s, Soviet historians found in the old registers of the city’s hospitals that in that fateful two-year period 8% of hospitalized patients for a strange shape of flu died, noting that the death toll was the 2.5% of the entire city population. It was believed, not without rationale, that 0.2% should become at least 2.5% in the Russian main cities. But Russia at the time was essentially an immense backward peasant country with poor connectivity even in the capitalist market where the majority of the population lived dispersed in the enormous poor and backward countryside. On the basis of some truly partial data, world scientists and Russian historians therefore believed it plausible that mortality in the countryside, lacking doctors and health facilities, must have been ten times more, or equal to the 25% of the total rural population. The same reasoning was applied to the entire Persian and of the sub-continent of India and western China (but still having only the pre-pandemic population census available only for a few particular provinces), whose economic, social and state structures had practically collapsed into underdevelopment by virtue of colonialist and imperialist plunder. If on the one hand this is highly plausible, since the capitalist virus spreads through the market routes, the backwardness of development does not necessarily represent an ease of propagation of the virus capable of reaching all the populations of the countryside, especially since the virus originates from the main centers of world capitalist accumulation. In the end, every pandemic in capitalism can only be the unequal and combined result for all causes, a deadly blanket that shrinks due to the specific pathogen in some areas, increasing the for all causes deaths (absence of overall supplies and further impoverishment due to the interruption of the market and the commercialization of goods), while it widens due to a specific death for a pathogen in others ( due to the general collapse of health and social structures in the face of a sudden health crisis).  

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