Part I – By S. Reza
It might seem absurd but it has been claimed or at least proposed that human evolution has ended and we are living in a period known as, “the end of history”. Francis Fukuyama, a scholar on international relations, believes that the modern man is the last man, and the evolution of western liberal democracy is the final form of human government, and there would be no ideological evolution for humanity since humanity has perfected its style of governance. This being said, any further enhancements to democracy is just realization of its supremacy and universalism.
The question that arises is simple, if history has ended, then what would be called of the incidents that are taking place globally? What would the attacks on the twin towers be called? Or what would the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan or elsewhere called? Theorists for the “end of history”, label such incidents as mere events since they do not contribute to any new ideologies or do not possess the potential to create new “perfect” forms of government. In fact, they believe that such events have a domino effect on backward models, and are leading to the realization of universal values, and the final destiny for humankind where they will be governed by the last stage of human evolution namely liberal democracy.
Such an attitude is leading to the stagnation of human development and is evident in the fact that after the cold war, we as humans have failed to develop any new model of governance that can offer a new way out of the depleting capitalist model. We have all joined the bandwagon of the victor of cold war and have indirectly claimed our present lifestyle as the lifestyle of the “last man” in the “end of history”.
Unfortunately, this approach has lead to a crisis which in capitalist terms is known as “recession”, which we are trying to counter using the very elements that we had shed to label our democracies “liberal.” Government intervention in markets which was frowned upon in the past by liberals has been adopted as the tool to counter the recession. The question remains if humans have evolved into the last man, and if liberal approach is the end of history, then why have we backtracked temporarily to counter a crisis? After all, perfect governance is the one that can solve imperfect problems.
The stagnant view of perfection has inhibited our qualities as humans to look for better alternatives. As a writer, which happens to have a Muslim background it is sad to see that we “last men” of Muslim faith (Capitalist Muslims) have failed miserably in proposing any new form of governance acceptable to Muslims let alone humankind. The only productive system, Muslims in the west have claimed is “shariah based banking.” It is indeed nothing but a smudged form of western banking, and even if we do accept it as our achievement then what is the difference between store bought cigarettes and homemade ones. After all they both kill.