In an already unstable world, the news of Donald Trump’s victory in the US presidential election has generated more anxiety and confusion. In truth, the election reflects the fact that the failing Capitalist ideology is unable to provide answers to the problems of its people. In the absence of an alternative, politicians who have no answers to complex problems have used emotional rhetoric to win over people. Now, more than ever, the world needs to see Islam implemented as a system and as a global alternative to Capitalism
A system of deception
In the United States, just as here in the UK during the Brexit campaign, we have seen fear and hatred of immigrants and Muslims whipped up to generate political gains, while the real issues are ignored.
Trump won power by exploiting racial tensions and demonising Muslims, and giving people false hope that he will take on the Washington establishment in order to solve their problems. Despite his slogans about being an outsider, we now see that he is appointing well connected politicians, influential bankers, and lobbyists as part of his new administration. In reality, he is part of the same elite as Hillary Clinton, and like her sees his campaign promises as a route to power, not a binding commitment.
In the UK, the Brexiteers claimed they would make £350 million available per week by exiting the EU, and gave people confidence that the process would be straightforward and simple. Yet nearly 5 months on, confusion reigns over the British government’s objectives or strategy for Brexit – and different ministers in the government regularly contradict one another! While the different political factions angle for position, a leading charity reports that a quarter of all children in the UK are living in poverty, and 1 in 5 parents are regularly missing meals in order to feed their kids. The faces in power may change but the same problems remain.
In both the Brexit vote, and now the US elections, we have seen deceptive slogans used to exploit this popular anger and deliver shocks at the ballot box. These elections demonstrate the fallacy of the secular liberal system, where man is the source of legislation – despite his limited knowledge, and capacity to be swayed by his emotions. Those with the right level of power and influence have used the media to trick the people, and then use the legislative process to make the system suit their own interests.
Absence of Islam
Today the effects of political instability and tension are undeniably clear in every corner of the globe. More and more people are looking for an alternative to the current system; an alternative which will guarantee them stability, prosperity and an honourable life. In the Islamic world we see war, bloodshed and chaos; in Europe a refugee crisis and the rise of xenophobia; and in the Far East, military tensions between China and its Americanbacked neighbours. The global political system – headed by the USA – is proving unable to contain or address the problems that it has caused in many regions of the world. In previous years, people in the West were reassured about the superiority of their governments compared to other regions of the world (ignoring the role their governments play in backing dictators and fuelling conflicts). However, over the last decade, economic stagnation has meant that people have lost confidence in the system. People have also become angry at successive scandals showing the greed of politicians, the special treatment for big business and the dishonesty of the media.
The genuine alternative
In reality, whether left wing or right wing, none of the major political factions in the West want to recognise that their failures at home and abroad stem from the secular liberal ideology of Capitalism, rather than because of one individual politician or another. Right now, to address the problems of humanity, the world needs Islam as a system which implements the Shariah.
The chief cause of the economic instability the world has witnessed in recent years stems from the Capitalist financial system. The huge influence of the banking institutions creates a boom and bust cycle where massive investments and speculation go into different industries, only to be withdrawn once short-term profits are The False Promises of Trump: The World Needs a Real Alternative gained. Interest based banking and loans encourage indebtedness, but this exposes the economy to collapse and contraction following a loss of market confidence.
In contrast, in the Islamic system, financial investments must stem from legitimate sources, with sharing of risk between capital partners and entrepreneurs. This leads to stable growth, and enables wealth creation rather than wealth concentration.
In the Capitalist system, democracy means that with short notice, parliaments and government have the power to change legislation regarding what is permitted or prohibited. As a result, major enterprises and wealthy factions in society spend huge amounts in order to influence the political process and protect their business interests – so the views of ordinary people are usually ignored.
In the Islamic system, the role of the Majlis ash-Shoura (the consultative assembly) is not to make laws, since the Shariah is the source of legislation. Rather its role is to hold the rulers accountable for their actions, which is an obligation not a privilege. As the Messenger of Allah (salla Allahu alayhi wa-sallam) said:
“The best of Jihad is a word of truth to a tyrant ruler”. [Tirmidhi, narrated by Abu Hurayrah, radhiya Allahu ‘anhu]
The Shariah has also distinguished between public properties such as oil, gas and water, which must be managed by the state for the benefit of the Ummah as a whole, and private properties which can be owned and traded by individuals and companies.
Hence the Shariah has established clear guidelines for employees, business owners and investors, which enable a stable economic environment, where the citizens know their rights and duties, in order to cooperate or compete on fair terms.
In a similar manner, the Shariah did not leave man to make subjective judgements on the rights and responsibilities of different racial and religious groups. In Capitalist societies such as Britain, immigrants were welcomed in order to fulfil the labour shortage in key sectors like healthcare, retail and construction. When the economy started to experience instability due to the turbulent financial markets, the media and government circles started to label immigrants as a threat and a drain on national resources.
Through the implementation of Islam, the Khilafah Rashidah will prohibit oppression of non-Muslims, and it will not allow a person’s race to determine the implementation of the law. The Messenger of Allah (salla Allahu alayhi wa-sallam) said:
“Indeed whoever oppressed a Mu’ahid (non-Muslim migrant), or degraded him, or overburdened him, or took something from him forcefully, then I am in dispute with him (the oppressor) on the Day of Judgement”[Sunan Abi Dawood, narrated by Abu Sa’eed Al-Khudri, radhiya Allahu ‘anhu].
The Shariah has addressed all of mankind’s affairs in detail, with a system that does not deny society’s needs and requirements, nor allows man’s instincts to run riot. While the world is led by the Capitalist system, humanity risks being dragged further into the depths by a drowning man. Now, more than ever, Muslims in the UK and the West, need to present Islam as an alternate civilisation to the wider public, while working to reestablish the Khilafah Rashidah.
We have sent you for no other reason but to be a mercy for mankind. (21:107)
Hizb ut-Tahrir Britain
17th Safar 1438
17th November 2016