In La Tribune 08/04/2020
Coronavirus killed today’s capitalism by shooting dead dividends. A few seconds away on the great clock of humanity, after international Marxist, liberal globali.zation disappears. zero-zero, ball in the centre, but the world after is simple: halfway between international and globalisation, the new strategic solidarities impose sovereign capitalist with strategic self-sufficiency as a dividend. Capitalism is dead, long live capitalism.
For a long time we have been arguing for such a model in the commodity industry in France , so the idea is not new. But every time such and such company in this sector showed a worrying strategy, the same ignorant assurance, the same complacency was displayed by decision-makers who did not wish to review their doctrines. The results? Péchiney, Comptoir-Lyon-Alemand-Louyot, Metaleurop, uranium, nickel, Alstom, cement,…etc. Whistle-blower, it’s not a profitable business, being right before the mass seems like a mistake.
With coronavirus, it’s the same symptoms, and the same conclusions, but worse. The truth is offensive, not telling it is to deny it, we always pay the price: a crisis of confidence with its political, electoral or economic consequences. Before expressing an understanding of the situation, why so many contradictory messages about masks, encouragement to go to the theatre and unpredictability about the first round of the municipal elections and then communications in trial and error mode about “confine yourselves” but “go to work in the fields”… In short, why always go beyond bankruptcy before reconsidering the doctrines?
Let’s go further into the health metaphor. For health care workers, with more masks of French and European manufacture, more beanies, gowns and over-blouses, gloves, glasses, respirators, medicines of French and European manufacture, then the existence of a European Health community is justified. Moreover, the scientific cooperation of the “discovery” operation to find cures and a vaccine demonstrates the relevance of the European collaboration model. Sovereignty of the health system is therefore not opposed to Europe Union.
Similarly, we need more production of resources in France and therefore an adaptation of laws and codes, more refining and metallurgy of strategic metals (as was the case in France with the Comptoir-Lyon-Alemand-Louyot before its shareholders blew it up with dynamite to sell their stocks of strategic metals), more work in steel in France and Europe, more production in power turbines as Alstom did in France and Europe and up to more ….washing machine factories in France and Europe. All these “pluses” become desired self-sufficiency and chosen jobs, i.e. the new dividends of sovereignty capitalism, which is therefore not the antithesis of the European Union.Certainly, it is a rebirth that is less profitable for the individual shareholder but more enriching for the community. Just as scientists are masterfully wiping out their egos and cooperating to fight the coronavirus, politicians will have to cooperate to save themselves from the crisis?
Will it be easy?
Although we don’t yet know the peak of this crisis, which we hope to begin to emerge at the end of the second quarter of this year, the indicators are bad: the automotive market is expected to be down 25%, tourism, and therefore aeronautics, is expected to be in trouble for two years before returning to the “world before”, advanced purchasing statistics indicate a recession and are historically low in Italy, < 20. Under these conditions, it is impossible for European States to start a new model of sovereignty capitalism without accommodations, without mutualisation of a new debt whose trajectory will be stratospheric. The European Central Bank must have a new role, manage this new debt, without excluding the possibility of cancelling it in one way or another, without new tax.
We do not yet know the peak of the crisis, but China is already emerging from the slump, its purchasing index is above 50. For the past 30 years, its economic intelligence has turned its agricultural, energy, metallurgical and mining doctrines entirely towards its sovereignty, and it is the world champion..
We must therefore hurry because its industry will benefit before ours from competitive advantages linked to the price of natural resources. The prices of metals are weakened, except for gold. The prices of agricultural raw materials are also falling, except for those linked to storage (palm oil, wheat, tea, coffee, rice). The price of natural gas is historically low (under $2), oil between $20 and $30 is already overstocked just about everywhere. It will go to $10, unless more storage space becomes available and especially if an unprecedented alliance between Washington, Toronto, Moscow and Riyadh marginalizes the energy war and lowers the world supply of hydrocarbons by 10% to 15%. But forcing a drop in US private production is legally very hypothetical, and this cohabitation between private capitalism of highly indebted shale oil and the OPEC and OPEC+ states would carry the risk of a mega-bond crisis for North American producers.
With such handicaps, moving from an old capitalism to a new one encounters at least two obstacles, one technical and the other moral.
The first problem of sovereignty is its dimension. Too short and it replicates our situation of lamentable dependence linked to today’s laissez-faire approach, it is embodied by States that wage a pirate war for masks at Chinese airports; this is what I called “competitive consumption” a long time ago in the context of the doctrine of strategic metals linked to renewable energies. Too long and sovereignty imposes an end to the organised interdependence that guarantees peace between nations, especially that dear to the European Union. The cursor has obvious populist consequences, it must find a happy medium and will moreover be different from one country to another.
Secondly, not two months ago, the expression “industrial or economic sovereignty” was an oxymoron for the same people who claim it today. Abandoning globalization and bravely endorsing this other model is not so simple. “Adore what you have burned, burn what you have loved”, Isn’t Clovis who wants to be.Before becoming the builder of new sovereign industrial, energy and agricultural doctrines, before turning into a credible mystagogue of sovereign capitalism doctrine , one must have been a true warrior of it. That is to say, to have been in the spirit of the “strange defeat” of Marc Bloch, to have suffered strange economic defeats in his flesh and suffered the consequences: to have been a broken gargoyles of globalization, to have been injured by redundancy or to have been an industrial death; bis repetita: Péchiney, Comptoir-Lyon-Alemand-Louyot, Metaleurop, uranium, nickel, Alstom, cement, etc…
These men know what sovereignty means, they have experienced and resisted its absence, just like the experts of economic intelligence who have already and for a long time denounced with wisdom and reflection the false truths of industrial dependence.
Including them in order to benefit from their experiences is indispensable. To act differently, with indifference, will always be like being between two hesitations, indecisive between two communicators and this leads to revolt..