The wrath of nations over the policies of the end of history

cybercrime concept judge gavel and tablet computer
Parliament passed Jordan's new cybercrime law in August. (File photo: Jordan News)
The utter failure of the neoliberal economic model, which has recently been linked to austerity measures and efforts to reduce government expenditures on social services, causes an increase in resentment, particularly among young people, as well as turbulence and violent outbursts that we might refer to as "marginal revolution." اضافة اعلان

The subsequent response to marginalization, and the consequent unrest and protests erupting from the margins—which are frequently employed—is within the context of what will be termed the "model of control". This mode of control is framed in Jordan through the Anti-Terrorism Law, which was released 15 years ago to some controversy, and is now being outdone by the new cybercrime law in terms of its limitations of public freedoms and freedom of expression.

The model of control tries to stop these marginal revolutions, framing them within a security framework, the issues of poverty and the socio-economic inequalities that society experiences are mainly overlooked with public safety becoming an ostensible priority. However, when the threats to the 'homeland' are immediate, the typical response is a tightening of social control in an effort to "keep a lid" on public unrest, which only makes matters worse in the future.

Facing economic, and social challenges managed by the political elite, using neoliberal policies without understanding its negative social impact, these policies force people to get angry, and thus be motivated by anger to destroy political systems as what is happening in some African nations facing interminable coups and revolts.

Distant powers
The British Newspaper the Independent published an article by Irish journalist Patrick Cockburn that sheds light on the outcome of the Arab Spring revolutions, tries to identify the reasons for their failure, and anticipates the future of the protests that some Arab countries are witnessing today. Cockburn argues that the greatest motive for change in the Arab world is the oppression, misery, and injustice against which the peoples of the region revolted a decade ago, and which today seems to be growing ever worse, and the people's anger towards it has grown.

The Gallup Foundation published a global “emotional report”. One of the emotions they recorded was anger, in which the Lebanese and Iraqis recorded the highest percentage. Both of which are countries whose histories feature heavy-handed and often brutal examples of American intervention. It is the powerlessness that leads to anger, a weakness that is often enforced by remote decision makers, often taking the form of the political and economic elite, but far more dangerous when they are very distant global powers.

America’s anger
The financial crisis of 2008, which engulfed the entire world, came as an alert of "marginal revolutions" but it was not strong enough to counteract the already present extreme neoliberal economic structure. Although it strongly influences people’s views of modern-day America, including its own citizens.

As described in the famous article “The End of History Is the Birth of Tragedy”, by Hal Brands and Charles Edel, Americans have grown accustomed to the success of the US-led international system because it has endured for such a long time. They failed to recognize what that order was designed to stop in the first place: the kind of complete collapse of the international order, the slide into violence, and the outbreak of great-power conflict. Their surprise was shared by all during the financial crisis, where neo-liberal policies caused an economic collapse.

It is the policies that bring this about. Wage gaps are growing ever wider, making those with money ever more distant. Global decision-makers (often also money-makers) are increasingly considering finance first, commodifying everything from the citizen to the nation-state.

One hundred years ago when everything seemed to be on the precipice of change, William Butler Yeats wrote "The Second Coming". I would like to share a part of it:

Surely some revelation is at hand;Surely the Second Coming is at hand.
The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out
When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi
Troubles my sight: somewhere in sands of the desert
A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
Reel shadows of the indignant desert birds.
The darkness drops again; but now I know
That twenty centuries of stony sleep
Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?

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