The fall of the Berlin Wall (1989) seemed to herald the victory of capitalism over socialism, what Francis Fukuyama declared the "End of History;" the failure and death of both Marxist thought and political movements. Fukuyama, an eloquent Hegelian political philosopher and one-time neoconservative (and continued anti-Marxist) asserts uncompromisingly in his "End of History" essay that ideology, not economics or material circumstances, broadly determine human activity and the course of history. Fukuyama, in all subsequent writings that I have read (even up until today), continually advances this Hegelian perspective on history, and Slavoj Zizek, not just a Marxist but a Communist/Hegelian/Lacanian, wonders if, in light of the unimpeded charge of capitalism since 1989, we are not all "Fukuyama-ists." In Zizek, probably the most famous philosopher of the last 10 years, we find a sysnthesis of Hegelian ideology ("THIS, I claim, is the best formula of how ideology works") and Marxist materialism, and Zizek often defends Hegelianism despite his continual encouragement of proletarian solidarity (of course, there has always been a leftist Hegel camp that sees no contradiction in endorsing both him and Marx).
Since 1989, almost ubiquitously, Marxist philosophy has been relegated in the global north to acadamia and debate amongst intellectual Marxists and other radicals (in the global south, Marxism has had significant social and political influence, too extensive for this discussion). However, with the 2008 global financial crisis, Marxist thinkers have found a new platform and wider audience for declaring the continued vitality and relevancy of Marx's insights and assertions. Marxist economist Richard Wolff, for example, went on a massive speaking tour to promote his book and video Capitalism Hits the Fan, in which he claims that not only has capitalism failed, but Marixsm and Socialism are the only viable alternatives. David Harvey, a Marxist Geographer (whatever that is) has gained a degree of mainstream academic acceptance with his Marxist critique of contemporary global financial capitalism. His "Reading Marx's Capital" podcast and youtube has enjoyed widespread popularity, and he shared a stage with Nobel Prize winning economist Joseph Stiglitz, and detailer of capitalisms insidious tenacity, Naomi Klein, at least once.
Two giants of radical intellectualism (at least at one time) are avowed Marxists' Antonio Negri and Michael Hardt. In their trilogy; Empire, Multitude, and Commonwealth, they show how capitalism has saturated the identity of all people and relations of all nations, but also offer a solution rooted deeply in Marxism. Furthermore, Negri in particular asserts that globalized capitalism has created a new class of person; the unemployed, un-utilized favela dweller in whom resides a great but un-profitable potential for productive, artistic, and revolutionary output (of course, it would be impossible to fully characterize the insights and assertions of these three large volumes in this blog post, suffice it to say they offer both an unintentional endorsement of [Empire], and counter-weight to [the other two], Fukuyama's above depiction of Marxism and capitalism).
Regardless of capitalism's supposed victory over socialism, Marxist thought has arguably grown in recent times and, as illustrated, both Marxist and anti-Marxist thinkers are still viable in todays intellectual and economic debate. Even Christopher Hitchens, radical leftist Trotsky-ite turned neoconservative, asserted until the end of his life that he was unapologetic about his Marxist leanings. In fact, he even reinforced another thinkers' assertion in an article on "The Revenge of Karl Marx" that as long as capitalism lives, so too does Marx.
Khary Tafari Robertson says
Awesomely articulated post. This class of people have been referred to in the past as the lumen-proletariat. These workers are are permanently disenfranchised, and even though they belong to the proletariat class, they possess no revolutionary potential. This class also includes the permanently unemployed, those purposely excluded from global capitalism, and those who can only live by the consumption of modern medicine, and cannot generate surplus value themselves.
Zizek and Hardt/Negri talk about this class differently, though all agree that they are purposefully and brutally disenfranchised by global capitalism. However, Negri/Hardt certainly feel there is incipient revolutionary potential here, the book multitude is about this, to an extent.
Khary Tafari Robertson says
Thanks for the ideas, i am woefully under read on negri/hardt, i will be sure to check them out.
Khary, this will go along well with your reading of A Thousand Plateaus. Both, but especially Negri, have fully integrated Deleuzian terminology into their political philosophy.
Will Yate says
Awesome link to the Stiglitz/Harvey discussion, thanks! I’m curious how they’ll interact. I actually think Stiglitz and Krugman aren’t all that far (at least in the sorts of inequality they focus on) from Harvey and Wolff, so that if economics was not politicized in a way that, say, physics is not, they would have no trouble finding all sorts of common ground.
I agree with you regarding commonalities shared by Stiglitz, Krugman, and Harvey (Wolff is new to me). If you follow Krugman, have you noticed his reference to Robert Gordon’s essay–on the third wave of the Industrial Revolution (technology)–quite a bit in the last six months?
Will Yate says
Tammy: Hadn’t read the Gordon essay, but I have now (it’s very interesting, thanks!), so I’ll be on the lookout for hints of it in Krugman.
Sure! I was stoked because this was BIG in the economic debate (saltwater/freshwater) economic schools of thought – technology and globalization.
Roy Spence says
Tammy – thanks for pointing out the article by Robert J. Gordon. I would encourage all to read the article. In the conclusion he states that a “Canadian or Swedish economist . . . would not be nearly so alarmed”. Partially true for Canada, the Conference Board constructs a social performance indicator for 17 major countries. Scandinavian countries all get an “A”, Canada a “B” and so on. The report can be found here:
You are welcome and thank you for the link. I was surprised Canada’s biggest demographic group living in poverty is the youth. Along with the U.S., China’s youth is a top concerns in their fiscal cliff. The children of the migrant worker coined “floating” or “low-end” population are having a hard time accessing their public school system. However, they managed to ride the 2008 crisis by implementing Keynesian economics.
In any event, Krugman didn’t reject Robert Gordon as a “doomsday sayer,” unlike many other well-known economists. And, I respect Krugman for that fact because I think something is off. The French philosopher, Bernard Stiegler does fascinating work re economics and social theories if you follow this.
while I agree with you to an extent, there is certainly a more decidedly Marxist flavor to Harvey and Wolff, especially when compared to Krugman. Krugman is a pretty strict Keynsian actually, whilst Stiglitz is…not sure how to characterize him but he certainly lacks the hard critical edge that Wolff has, and Harvey is also more radical than Stiglitz. Stiglitz and Naomi Klein are some of the most important figures of the last ten years, to be sure, and I’m glad i was able to fit them in.
Thank you very much for the summary and the links.
Nice summation, accurate as far as my limited knowledge goes: think I’m having a type of existential crisis, choosing parameters in thinking about solidarity in our difference, economics, and culture.
Picking-up on the 2008 financial crisis and “Two giants of radical intellectualism (at least at one time) are avowed Marxists’… . In their trilogy; Empire, Multitude, and Commonwealth, they show how capitalism has saturated the identity of all people and relations of all nations… .” I remember taking these topics much more seriously after being introduced to Joerg Rieger and his thinking through the lens of religious studies in his book “Christ & Empire: From Paul to Postcolonial Times”(2007). I feel so critical of positive psychology; maybe more like being stuck in the social-conflict approach. I don’t know, maybe I’m just critical of Christology, thinking it has a profound pull framing economic theories throughout western history.
Wonder if PEL might have any interest in Rieger’s take on the topic, because his approach is insightful. Here’s a link in case anyone’s interest in tweaked. http://homebrewedchristianity.com/2011/09/06/economics-theology-and-discipleship-joerg-rieger-on-homebrewed-christianity-116/
wow, never heard of Rieger but I am VERY interested in the subject matter. One thing i’ve learned over the years is that Negri and Hardt are extremely well-versed in Roman and Medieval history so i think your connection is completely relevant. Also, this discussion certainly links us back to The Protestant Work Ethic (something Fukuyama cites all the time) in that since the time of PWE, people have actually been tracing the “capitalist” or “buisness” ethic back to Paul, who is considered wholly responsible for turning Christianity into a global engine (which of course pre-dates the globalizing tendency of capitalism) There has been a lot of attention given to Paul lately, and even Zizek wrote a chapter in a collaberative work on Paul.
who is tracing capitalism, or any other “global-engine”, back to the ministry of Paul?
I probably overstated the case, though it is still there. I read an excellent article in The Atlantic several years ago about Paul shaping Christianity for maximum effectiveness, so to speak, and how it was a template for global capitalism. Having a difficult time locating the article, however the first link I provided is along these lines, and the second link is all i could find about another essay I’ve read, but again, I probably overstated the case.
here it is:http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2009/04/one-world-under-god/307335/
I don’t think you overstated and is nothing overt in acedemic study of religion, Roman law and social political structure (paterfamia).
Will read the Atlantic link. I’ll link Crossan and Rieger – these men argue Paul went head-to-head with the Roman law, which was an economic structure. I tend to be persuaded to understand western philosophy it’s helpful have to have a knowledge of Roman political philosophy (economics).
Ah, Robert Wright – the non-zero-sum guy! Sincerely, thanks for the link.
can you think of something philosophical, and not theological, that JR would uniquely bring to the conversation?
Re: something philosophical not theological and JR, my take is understanding Roman law’s influence on social political philosophy and capitalist modernity in Europe and the U.S. is contextual and important. Historically the structure of Roman society and what most scholars consider authentic Pauline texts…internal critic of the Roman Empire and “trickle down” economics, IMHO.
http://www.encyclopedia.com/topic/Roman_law.aspx (this link gets to the heart of the matter)
I was hoping to get this in as the first comment but hopefully people see it. The links appear broken, when in fact i just put in one too many “HTTP”s if you can click on the link and simply delete the second “http//” and hit enter or refresh, it will take you to the link. Hopefully most people figured this out, because its too late for me to edit.
There was a good interview with Sidney Rittenberg on China. There are many running threads discussed in the interview that ties into topics in this blog.
(Source:You can hear the interview here:http://m.theatlantic.com/china/archive/2013/05/sidney-rittenberg-on-china/276207/)
I think US-China relations are of major importance for many reasons, the predominate reason being our childrens generation will have to be knowledgeable about China and Japan, natural world resources, etc. etc. …. I could go one and one till the break of dawn (little humor there re a hip hop song).
I do see US relations with China one of major importance in my attempt to balance nationalism not only found among the Chinese but also found in Americans.
I welcome your comments and thinking about this topic.
I think that China has long since walked away from any Communist/Marxist philosophy, no?
I think James Fallow is a reliable source. Do you dmf?
when he is reporting Fallows is quite good but as political/economic theorist I find him to be quite lacking (he could use a bit of Harvey) and increasingly I find that he blurs the line between reporting and opining (maybe a side-effect of blogging?), as long as the only model for success is Growth we will be in a perpetual state of conflict with China and all.
on my reading list:
for a more deleuzian/whiteheadian take on these matters you might enjoy William Connolly:
The only model is not growth which Rittenberg discusses in the interview.
Given what your concerns are–appreciate your comments–,I think you’ll find the interview refreshing and welcome your thoughts on the interview and the essay by Drucker.
I will follow-up on your links and hope you will do the same or, I think, we are just speaking past each other.
This is interesting for reasons specifically I was thinking about following-up on the topic Christian Caryl is speaking about. One article I read is by the author Paolo G. Carozza called The Catholic Church, Human Rights, and Democracy: Convergence and Conflict with the Modern State.
I just want to make sure I’m being objective even though I lean toward JR and have a book by him that’s on my summer reads list re globalization.
To be honest I find this topic fascinating and think Americans can be paranoid (without reason) when it comes to China. I hope you give the interview with Rittenburg a chance. Anyway, I would say I’m in the heart of Military complex in the state I live in. Here’s an interesting bit of fact re technology from radio to digital.
don’t know Carrozza but I’ll google him soonish, got about halfway thru the Rittenburg and it was all quite familiar, does he get at describing actual alternatives to hyper-capitalism taking root somewhere in China later in the talk? I don’t think I’m paranoid about China but have many friends who do work in their realms of influence from the mainland to Africa and they seem quite committed to modern standards of development which are a nightmare in the anthropocence. The general intellectual stumbling block to most liberation theologies has been to produce a working alternative economic system on the scales needed to replace the current ones and than you know the whole issue(s) of our all-too-human psychologies/will…
Yes he does, which is very similar to what Harvey is suggesting. He also mentions China has taken a strong stand with North Korea re nuclear weapons by acknowledging and having open dialogue with their leader Kim Jong-un.
You let me know what you think after you finish the interview. I don’t know what to think. I think about IBM, the ratio of males to females in China (one child policy) and the US, the ghost cities in China and Keynesian economics during the 2008 financial crash. China, like the US is having a similar problem with education and like China our youth is the largest demographic group living in poverty. It’s a lot to think about and I do.
I have two of your links left and I’m focusing on D&R! Have a good evening.
No I don’t. I’m with Harvey on this one. How ’bout you?
If you have an interest in the song you can view it at “The Sugarhill Gang – Rappers Delight Lyrics (Full Version)” on youtube.
Perhaps I should have posted this comment in this thread in contrast and critiquing Rieger’s work attempting to be objective.
By way of contrast, in an attempt to be objective there is an essay by Peter F. Drucker I cited in my initial comment. I think Drucker makes some interesting observations re the state of American academia and the liberal arts looking back at the Stalinists’ appeal in the 1930s through an educational, political, and sociological framework.
(Drucker, Peter F. “Political Correctness and American Academe.” Society 35.2 (1998): 380-385. SPORTDiscus.)
There is an interesting article by Brendan Simms titled The Ghosts of Europe Past in the NTYs.
I find economics interesting for various reasons. But, a recent mapping caught my attention in Spatial Analysis that can be viewed here:http://www.spatialanalysis.ca/2011/global-connectivity-mapping-out-flight-routes/.
I wonder what is going on, all this coverage re the NSA–although important and agree a violation of our liberties–, I wonder why now?
Why now since according to David J. Lynch, “Though they bonded at their two-day California summit, sharing small talk about exercise and a shirt-sleeve stroll in the unforgiving desert sun, the presidents of the world’s two largest economies still confront a range of issues that threaten to pull them apart.
U.S. President Barack Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping face protracted wrangling on cyber spying, North Korea’s nuclear ambitions and human rights. Long after the glow of their one-on-one chats — rare for American and Chinese official exchanges — has faded, the haggling will resume.”
My understanding is the EU is ranking number one in GDP – higher than the US and China.
Any thoughts re this topic?
the new economy (well really economies) is largely online, the various people with supercomputers are tracking all kinds of data now because they can and it gives them more power, more access/control, more of the same really as far as I can tell.
That was the topic discussed in last night’s episode of Through the WormHole titled Where Does Life Begin:Global Network’s Effects on Humans.
some people want to frame these issues as a whole new order/epoch of existence (or at least of evolution) but I think that this overstates the impact of machines and underestimates the human factor:
This is an interesting podcasts. There’s an article discussing the humanities, “Yet the argument has implications for pedagogy that the report does not spell out. The competency argument necessitates, I believe, a rethinking of humanities education to move from a text-centered to a student-centered pedagogy. If the humanities are to pursue goals such as strengthening students’ language skills, enhancing their analytic capacities, and deepening their ability to understand, then the quality of the teaching enterprise has to be reconceived in terms of strategies for student learning, rather than exclusively with regard to the coverage of works and themes”
I’m wondering if Kittler’s critique is a similar one?
Kittler was a pretty radical post-humanist, there is a link to some of his lectures@EGS that I left at the ABC link above.
Does it follow logically (according to Kittler’s argument) that there was no leak?
This might be of interest.
not sure how the leaks fit in or not tho the idea that somehow we are at the mercy of technology does raise all kinds of worries about what responsibility means and how and to who/what it is attributed. The conference looks interesting I think you may like the work of the philosopher of science Isabelle Stengers:
How do stay calm re technology or do you worry? Thanks for the link.
I worry about the speed and size of the cyber-powers that be like those massive trading companies that collapsed the world markets and that folks like Jaron Lanier are right that this will just widen/quicken the gap between the haves and the have nots, and of course hacking/terrorism, but I don’t think that there is any substantial way to reign in such organizations so the question (to which I don’t have an answer) is how to try and live a humane life in the face of great powers and ongoing collapses of our environs? This is probably why many continental philosophers are back mining the great epic tragedies but that doesn’t really offer any solutions that I can see…
In my attempt to have a better understanding of technology (cyber-space) I read articles by Jules Polonetsky (http://obamaischeckingyouremail.tumblr.com/)
and while understanding humor often is a way to deal with these issues, a physical release from toxic stress – I don’t get it, when our civil liberties are being violated so intimately. I guess I should heed the advice, reminding me that to become upset with a person who doesn’t understand is demeaning the person and my own convictions – speak to others who share an understanding and concern of the topic in discussion.
It’s upsetting, the division among articulate thinkers on the topic who come discussing this topic with a strong Jesuit background.
Anyway, about the leak – I find the timing strange because of US delegation talks with China. California’s economy is strongly interconnected with China’s, and the leak came from the EU, whose GDP is stronger than the US and China’s. Add on, Russian President Vladimir Putin possibly offering Edward Snowden political asylum.
Correction edit: The leak came from the UK not the EU.
lots of good related lectures @:
Then there was no leak.
RS51 – Joseph Heath on Economics Without Illusions (audio/mp3)
“Guest Joseph Heath is the Director of the Centre for Ethics and Professor of Philosophy and Public Policy at the University of Toronto, author of “Economics Without Illusions: Debunking the Myths of Modern Capitalism,” joins us as we turn our skeptical eyes toward the treacherous dual terrain of economics and politics. We discuss the ways in which, with his book, he attempts to raise our economic literacy and empower us with new ideas. In it, he draws on everyday examples to skewer the six favorite economic fallacies of the right, followed by impaling the six favorite fallacies of the left. Heath leaves no sacred cows untipped as he breaks down complex arguments and shows how the world really works.” (copy and paste)
Joseph Heath in conversation with Allan Gregg (video)
6th Subversive festival
15/05/2013, 21:00h, cinema Europa
Alexis Tsipras & Slavoj Žižek: The Role of the European Left
Wow! The video is two hours long and a bit rambling.
I’d still recommend this podcast if you haven’t already listened to it. Because I’m really just going to sumarize it a bit.
RS51 – Joseph Heath on Economics Without Illusions (audio/mp3)
The blog post above started out “The fall of the Berlin Wall (1989) seemed to herald the victory of capitalism over socialism, what Francis Fukuyama declared the “End of History;” the failure and death of both Marxist thought and political movements.”
In the podcast professor Heath talks about this. Communism as the attempt to do away with markets and prices etc. was a failure.
And more or less some form of liberal/social democracy seems to be the better political system.
And it seems for now we are going to be with some form of regulated capitalism/markets/trade.
It doesn’t matter if you’re on the left or the right and want to change this or that policy, have more or less social programs, you are still not getting away from capitalism in some form.
In the video one guy is Slovene and the other Greek. The forms of socialism in Europe are not alternative systems to capitalism. The state depends on capitalism to create goods, services, and mopney the state can then redistribute.
We can see in Greece and Spain and etc. what happens when people forget this. The state can no longer reditribute what it doesn’t have.
And as Joseph Heath says in the video interview the Swedish welfare state (capitalism) has produced a higher standard of living than communism ever did. We can look at the Scandinavian countries and see their high standards of living and social programs but they are still capitalist countries.
And that was Fukuyama’s point. We can see in China that they have really abandoned communism as an economic system and are really capitalists now.
And capitalism/trade has raised more people out of poverty and raised all of our living standards and extended our lives etc…. than any other system.
Matt Ridley: Deep Optimism (On this video you can got to 3 and skip the intros)
Would it be okay to utilize Matt Ridley: Deep Optimism in a economics discussion?
I think so. He is a scientist but he was also a writer for The Economist.
And his book/talk is showing how through trade/exchange of goods and ideas human culture and civilization has moved and continues to move forward.(capitalism)
His idea that “ideas have sex” is a reference to sex in biological creatures, but this also applies to ideas and philosophies. So then we have a market place for the trade and exchange of goods and a market place of ideas for the trade and exchange of ideas. And in these market places new goods and ideas will be created. Looking back through the history and development of philosophy we can see this just as when we look back through the history and development of certain goods like computers.
This topic above was in reference to markets and price systems. And how even communist Russia had to marketize the system to try to make it work. And it failed. That’s why China has given up on communism as an economic system.
And how even countries we might think of as socialist in Europe are actually capitalist countries.
So if we look back at human development it centers around trade and markets and with trade/exchange of goods also comes the exchange of ideas.
When a person goes to work he/she is trading their time, skill, effort (values) for money (a value) to then trade/exchange for some other good or service (values).
Thanks. Interesting article that picks-up on the history of human development re trade and exchange of goods…ideas. http://www.lwbooks.co.uk/journals/soundings/pdfs/Vocabularies%20of%20the%20economy.pdf
hmm, we seem to differ greatly on how far gone things are, time will tell I suppose, cheers.
@ Tammy interesting pdf.
I can certainly share many of the sentiments about wrongs of consumerism and how vocabularies frame and position us and even seem to dehumanize us.
“I saw she had on the back of her
t-shirt ‘Customer Liaison’. I felt flat. Our whole conversation seemed
somehow reduced, my experience of it belittled into one of commercial
transaction; my relation to the gallery and to this engaging person had
become one of market exchange. The very language positioned us, the
gallery, and our relationship, in a very particular way.
We know about this practice, and its potential effects, in many
arenas. On trains and buses, and sometimes in hospitals and
universities too, we have become customers, not passengers, readers,
patients or students. In all these cases a specific activity and relationship
is erased by a general relationship of buying and selling that is given
precedence over it.”
@dmf interesting interview with Italian theorist Franco “Bifo” Berardi. I too share some of his sentiments.
In the Matt Ridley talk and his book he talks about the computer mouse and about one of the many things the capitalist market does that we take for granted that the soviet union figured out very quickly and had to marketize the system to try to make it work.
Besides the price systems it get people from around the world working together, and for each other, in a bottom up decentralized distributed net work way to get thousand or millions of people at different times and places doing different things and taking different ideas from different people and places that don’t even know each or know how to make a computer mouse.
A critique of both pieces is they don’t turn their critique on themselves. If we re-frame our vocabularies of economy we are still framing names and positions. And “Bifo” wants to save something good in an idealized Marxism and against the stereo typical negatives capitalism.
But unfortunately many of the ideas he has of the good in Marxism “social civilization” are in fact more in liberal democracies and regulated capitalist economies than in communism.
In communism a “planned economy” the government regulates and dictates production. It owns every thing. It tells you what you can get or not. It regulates distribution. And it regulates labor, tells you what job you’re going to do for the good of society.
In a capitalist economy the labor market in a bottom up decentralized distributed net work way tells every one what jobs need to be done and how valuable those jobs are to society.
So I’m a not here to say that capitalism is wonderful and great and fair or any thing like that. It’s not.
I could write books about the problems with it. (And especially about banking !!)
But it, the market, or “the invisible hand of the market”, does a lot of things we take for granted and think just happen. And the reason communism failed as an economic system is they realized you can’t do without prices and the market. And people didn’t like the government dictating every aspect of their lives.
And people like to have some say in politics such as who gets elected.
But it’s not perfect and the government needs to be involved. This is where I differ greatly from the wishful thinking or fantasies of some who advocate all out laissez-fare capitalism.
So I think if you want to save something good in Marxist thought as “Bifo” does, it is to be found more in a social/liberal democracy and regulated capitalist economy like Sweden than it ever was in communism itself.
Perhaps. I’m thinking about the idea stated on pg 14 “(The idea that the City is a centre of wealth-creation is thus bizarre – it is more a centre of a system of wealth-extraction that spans the world.)”
Appreciate your thoughts and contribution. Thanks.
these sorts of parasitic northern state islands of prosperity are going the way of gated communities as the tropics of chaos spin wider and wider:
Interesting you mention the tropics because I read an article about Cuba–state of chaos–in the National Geographic yesterday. Which, I need to find on-line–thank you.
Still, from a theological lens, it still strikes me strange that liberation theologian, Hans Küng, didn’t feel competent to comment about the Argentina economic crisis and factors surrounding the tensions between their PM and then Arch Bishop when Benedict XVI resigned. There’s actually a good journalist who reports in the NTYs in the section World: Americas. Sadly, not many comments or contributions from Times readers. Then there’s the Spatial Analysis mapping (I linked above) along with record youth unemployment according to an article in Atlantic.
(Speaking for myself, I think to avoid these questions is a disservice to Catholicism.)
Anyway, re the video you posted, oddly, Christian Parenti’s ideas were similar ideas I contributed in an economic Regional Chamber and Growth survey. I aim to please, and rather disarrayed myself with vocabularies of the economy. I think, while admitting I could be wrong, there is a type of indoctrination that skews civil liberties that should be stood up for or one-by-one we will lose not only our liberty but understanding what our liberties are for. For example, I hear youth and adults through around the word “victimization,” in place of accountability.
I think this is a problem, in that, there’s a difference between teaching civics and law vs. manipulating youth who don’t know the difference while advocating civil rights (which does involve accountability). I hear the term to the point of rendering me utterly speechlessness, downright brain drain, and the emotional drama it stirs, in my not so humble opinion. I’ll go further and say the slogan coined “the war on poverty,” is just stupidity to me when asking for community participation and enthusiasm.
The common factor re world economies is our youth (globally) are the largest demographic groups living in poverty.
I can’t keep up with the ways in which the RCC courts oppressive powers and silences voices of liberation, if you get a chance check out Katherine Gibson:
@ Tammy and dmf I don’t even know where to begin to respond.
Both of you make reference to “liberation” perhaps if there is some good to hold onto in Marx it is how it inspires so many particularly on the “left” for a sense of social and political freedom and justice.
“these sorts of parasitic northern state islands of prosperity are going the way of gated communities as the tropics of chaos spin wider and wider”
Insight: Nordic nations grapple with ‘austerity lite’
“Perhaps. I’m thinking about the idea stated on pg 14 “(The idea that the City is a centre of wealth-creation is thus bizarre – it is more a centre of a system of wealth-extraction that spans the world.)””
“It has not been as a result of
participation in production that they have gained their wealth. (The
idea that the City is a centre of wealth-creation is thus bizarre – it is
more a centre of a system of wealth-extraction that spans the world.) In
this sense much of the new economic elite is parasitic, extracting value
from the rest of society”
I’m in the U.S. and that is the great irony of the Occupy movement. That is the 99% against the one percent when in reality the U.S. and Europe are the elite one percent consuming 99% percent of resources. The poorest people in the U.S. live at a standard higher than two thirds of the rest of the world.
It’s an irony that Marx inspires this move for social justice freedom and equality when as a system in place it suppresses exactly that. And it was actually the enlightenment thinkers and liberal democracy and free markets that originally inspired the “left” for exactly these things.
But I think it is liberal/social democracies and markets that provide these things. Look at the rise of China and Brazil and Mexico which now has the richest man in the world.
“liberation theology” is not a surprise to me
The League of the Just was founded by German émigrés in Paris in 1834. This was initially a utopian socialist and Christian communist group devoted to the ideas of Gracchus Babeuf.
After Marx and Engels joined it later became the Communist League.
The communist doctrine each according to his need came from Acts 4:32–35, “All the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of his possessions was his own, but they shared everything they had […] there were no needy persons among them […] the money […] was distributed to anyone as he had need.”
And just as Christians don’t really want life forever, heaven is something other than life, heaven is escaping reality, so too I hear in many who advocate Marx a desire to escape reality into an imagined reality – utopia.
I don’t know about down loading from this site but you can press play on the player and listen.
FF: The Philosophy of Nietzsche – Joseph Brisendine
Jeez, I’m in heaven reading your reply! Let me think.
qapla – You stated, “I’m in the U.S. and that is the great irony of the Occupy movement. That is the 99% against the one percent when in reality the U.S. and Europe are the elite one percent consuming 99% percent of resources. The poorest people in the U.S. live at a standard higher than two thirds of the rest of the world.”
I don’t know if you follow Paul Krugman but he’s gradually (over the last two years) taking this topic more seriously, “Apple, by contrast, seems barely tethered to the material world. Depending on the vagaries of its stock price, it’s either the highest-valued or the second-highest-valued company in America, but it employs less than 0.05 percent of our workers. To some extent, that’s because it has outsourced almost all its production overseas. But the truth is that the Chinese aren’t making that much money from Apple sales either. To a large extent, the price you pay for an iWhatever is disconnected from the cost of producing the gadget. Apple simply charges what the traffic will bear, and given the strength of its market position, the traffic will bear a lot.”
I like Paul Krugman and he’s right, right? It seems the stock markets, because of being global corporations, are un-tethered to the rest of the economy.
And on Apple lest not even go into the topic of tax evasion.
There are a lot of things with the system I’d like to change, but the point Joseph Heath was making in the podcast, is you aren’t going to change the general structure but within that structure you can make a lot of changes.
I think “changing within that structure” is spot on. Excellent article by David Brooks titled “The Humanist Vocation,” and I agree with him, in that, the humanities “turned from an inward to an outward focus,” picking-up on Philip C’s blog “Why can’t life always be beautiful?”
Philosophy: A Guide to Happiness (6 videos)
RS48 – Philosophical Counseling
And this ties into the last thing about Apple. At first I was frustrated with Apple and big corporations but then I started to think about it. They are to blame for much but I think if we blame them we are absolving ourselves of responsibility.
Because when we buy something we are voting. If Americans buy cheap stuff made in China and will pay hundreds for an iWhatever that they made for $30 then people are telling the corporations this is what they want and that’s what they’ll keep doing.
So “changing within that structure” could be a cultural shift or awareness.
I think classes in the humanities would be great but also classes in economics and civics even in middle and high schools.
But then maybe this is exactly what some want.
Texas GOP Declares: “No More Teaching of ‘Critical Thinking Skills’ in Texas Public Schools”
I’ll listen to the second link as I’m aware of the other 2.
Hey thanks, I didn’t know about the ‘New Freakonomics Radio Podcast”
I’m listening to the one right now and I’ll have to check out past episodes
Sure. The new podcast (Do You Really Want to Know Your Future?) ties in with the links you posted. The Freakonomics link I posted ( The Truth Is Out There…Isn’t It?) is dated prior to the Truthout article you posted.
Anyway, if your interested there’s a follow-up blog (Liberals in Disguise?) to the podcast I posted with a test. Interesting stuff and I lean toward uncertainty.
Thanks for the link (Philosophical Counseling). If I’m to be honest I’m not really turned on by the speaker much. Probably because I enjoy the continentals (at present). However, I think Alasdair MacIntyre’s “After Virtue” is a decent read.
I don’t know what to think really. I do know the division or tension is somewhat draining when trying to generate new ideas for problem solving in my local economy. I tend to tune out and carry on. I am hoping to learn more about Confucian and Daoism schools of thinking this summer and looking forward to the break from traditional schools of thought–feels pretty ridged theses days.
Getting back to civics and economics I’ll show you something that is of interest to me. Dan Goleman speaks about creativity in problem solving (https://www.morethansound.net/blog/2012/01/the-creative-brain/), which is part of HOTS in critical thinking.
So far so good. Right? I don’t think so. There was an article by David Brooks, “The Romantic Advantage” and now we are getting into economies, attachment theories, and marketing. There is a comment by JR from Cincinnati, Ohio and I think he’s spot on re brand management and attachment theories.
This is where the western misunderstanding of person as individual is fascinating, in that, this wrestling within China’s history can be traced to principles found in both Confucian and Daoism philosophical thinking. That’s what I’m working on (at present).
I agree I like the “continentals” also, but I thought it was interesting to bring philosophy back as guide to life.
Massimo Pigliucci is a philosophy professor and they have some good episodes.
I really liked RS32 – Value-free Science?
This wasn’t that good of an episode but in the comment section I posted a long comment on Buddhism
RS70 – Graham Priest on Buddhism and Other Asian Philosophies
I really like Confucianism, and Taoism, and Buddhism.
I go to a Zen Buddhist group although I’m not a “Buddhist”. The head “roshi” is a philosophy professor and great guy.
THE ZEN MIND – An Introduction by Empty Mind Films
A Day in the Life of a Zen Monk – EmptyMind Films
I’m a huge fan of Stephen Batchelor. I think I’ve read everythimg by him and listened to every podcast of his.
I think there are some really interesting connection between Heidegger and Merleau Ponty and Bergson with Taoism and Buddhism.
I’m certainly not the first notice this.
Merleau-Ponty and Buddhism
Heidegger and Taoism on Humanism
Cast Off Body and Mind: Realization of the Self in
Phenomenology and Soto Zen
As for China I think the “west” has misunderstood China
Martin Jacques: Understanding the rise of China
Dan Goleman is great, I will listen to the podcast, so is Paul Ekman “Emotional Awareness” book.
And his tudent Dacher Keltner – Born to Be Good (podcast)
The quiet revolution to ease our minds
Congressman Tim Ryan shares his idea on how to ease the minds of stressed-out Americans and help politicians in Washington see things more clearly. Jim Axelrod reports.
An Introduction to Social and Emotional Learning
Emotional intelligence must be developed in children before any other learning can effectively take place.
Smart Hearts: Social and Emotional Learning Overview
The Hawn Foundation – MindUp (2011)
Hawn Foundation Video with Dr. Dan Siegel
Meditation and the Brain with Daniel Siegel, MD (BSP 44) – (podcast/mp3)
Wow! Thank you for all these great links! Friday I’m going to listen to speakers, James Miller (Daoism), Mary Evelyn Tucker (Confucianism) and Lisa Sideris (Environmental Ethics). Thank you very much.
Batchelor’s point on the utilization of modernity is a good one.
The TED talk with Martin Jacques is VERY interesting – thanks for it. I posted an article by Brooks that gives access to a study re the humanities. http://www.humanitiescommission.org/_pdf/hss_report.pdf
It’s long but worth the time. The study also ties into Jacques’ talk starting on pg 55, quoting Nussbaum on pg 59:
“Nations such as China and Singapore, which previously ignored the humanities, are now aggressively promoting them, because they have concluded that the cultivation of the imagination through the study of literature, film, and the other arts is essential to fostering creativity and innovation….We in the U.S. are moving away from the humanities just at the time that our rivals are discovering their worth. But a healthy business culture is not all that life in America is about. We also pride ourselves on our open democracy, and on the freedoms of speech and the press that make our political life one in which the people rule. To keep democracy vital, we urgently need the abilities that the humanities foster.” — From Martha C. Nussbaum, author of Not for Profit: Why Democracy Needs the Humanities (2011); see also “Cultivating the Imagination,” The New York Times, October 17, 2010
Back to the TED talk, I would argue that the Chinese do have rising voices. The voices of Lu Xun, Bei Doa and Zhang Alling (Elleen Chang). But I understand Jacques point about the importance within the Chinese peoples understanding that Chinese civilization and culture is the glue–the Han Dynasty is one, I think, to take seriously in understanding the Chinese.
Again, very appreciative for the links, qupla.
“Nations such as China and Singapore, which previously ignored the humanities, are now aggressively promoting them, because they have concluded that the cultivation of the imagination through the study of literature, film, and the other arts is essential to fostering creativity and innovation…”
We often tend to think of China as “communist” or “Marxist” but only superficially.
Economicly they are capitalist.
There is some influence from Taoism and Buddhism but culturally they are profoundly Confucianist.
Confucius Institutes are non-profit public institutions aligned with the Government of the People’s Republic of China
Confucius Statue Shows Up On China’s Tiananmen Square
Confucius statue gift from China to Houston Texas
Australia’s Chief Minister and Minister for the Arts, Jon Stanhope on Thursday launched the Statue of Confucius in the capital city of Canberra.
I took the course Asian Cultures. The textbook is by Carolyn Brown Heinz and have a few books looking at the differences between Confucius’ teaching of good governance as opposed to what is called Neo Confucianism (Confucian elite [Shenshi]) with a strong military hand.
“the differences between Confucius’ teaching of good governance as opposed to what is called Neo Confucianism (Confucian elite [Shenshi]) with a strong military hand.”
Absolutely there are differences just as there are differences between philosophical Taoism and and regional folk religion versions of Taoism in China.
In an odd way we got way off topic and have now come back in a way to Marxism.
Not only has China given up on Marxism as an economic system, and I agree “western free market system” is better than “capitalism”, China is also giving up on Marxism as political philosophy.
“The last several years have seen an official revival of Confucianism in China. President Hu Jintao has developed the idea of a “Harmonious Socialist Society,” drawing on Confucian ideas”
Yi Liu on the Revival of Confucianism in China
Prothero on Confucianism
“It is thought that such works had considerable importance on European thinkers of the period, particularly among the Deists and other philosophical groups of the Enlightenment who were interested by the integration of the system of morality of Confucius into Western civilization.”
“Study the past if you would define the future.”
Thanks, qapla. I’m fortunate, in that, I’ve been under the instruction of a Zen master for a few years. I’ve read Protheros’ book “God is Not One,” and will watch the video.
Nice quote by Confucius.
That said, it strikes me strange that history courses are being eliminated in some humanities departments, which is why I referenced the article by Brooks.
In any event, in the way of Marxism taken-up by Keynes is how China survived the surplus of labor in the 2008 crash. Which is what the US did under the FDR administration. And, as I suspected, Texas and PA’s economies are radically connected. I guess we will see what happens as “the train kept a rollin’ all night long.” (That’s a pun to speed rail trains in China[respectfully]).
“in the way of Marxism taken-up by Keynes”
“Marx’s economics took as its starting point the work of the best-known economists of his day, the British classical economists. Among these economists were Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, and David Ricardo.
Ricardo developed a theory of distribution within capitalism, that is, a theory of how the output of society is distributed to classes within society. The most mature version of this theory, presented in On the Principles of Political Economy and Taxation, was based on a labour theory of value in which the value of any produced object is equal to the labor embodied in the object. (Adam Smith also presented a labor theory of value but it was only incompletely realized.) ”
So Keynes was not following Marx but British classical economists
You might like these, they favor Hayek, but I don’t think they misrepresent Keynes, and Keynes only makes sense as balancing Hayek
“Fear the Boom and Bust” a Hayek vs. Keynes Rap Anthem
Fight of the Century: Keynes vs. Hayek Round Two
Review: Keynes Hayek, The clash that defined modern economics
“The confrontation between John Maynard Keynes, and his Austrian born free market adversary and friend, Friedrich August von Hayek, is one of the most famous in the history of contemporary economic thought. ”
Keynes “General Theory of Employment, Interest, and Money,” actual utilized Marx ideas (government intervention) because of Marx prediction that capitalism would turn in on itself through overproduction, which the British economists suppressed in support of the Hayek camp.
One of a few good sources on this topic is William J. Duiker.
Interestingly and philosophically speaking a book by Robert Skidelsky and Edward Skidelsky that I was hoping to read over the summer–ordered two weeks ago through Amazon–will not be arriving until after summer. Well, the last week in August!
Thanks with great respect.
If you don’t mind its a Catholic news site, there’s a decent article by Charles Clark who teaches economics at St. John’s University. One of his hot buttons (not just tax evasion) is Apple too because they reduce competition. Clark states, “Not to speak ill of the dead, but Steve Jobs got a style patent for drawing a rectangle with curved corners and saying, “That’s what an iPhone is going to look like and if anyone does anything that looks like that, we’ll sue them.” And they did. They sued Samsung, and Samsung has to stop making phones with that shape. Apple could bankrupt lots of companies for what is just a piece of paper with a box drawn on it.” – See more at: http://www.uscatholic.org/articles/201306/economics-inequality-why-wealth-gap-bad-everyone-27421?utm_source=June+25%2C+2013&utm_campaign=ebulletin+June+25%2C+2013&utm_medium=email#sthash.v2WhR04B.dpuf
“Keynes “General Theory of Employment, Interest, and Money,” actual utilized Marx ideas (government intervention)”
Completely off. Completely misunderstand/represent Marx. Keynes was working within and building on classical British economics and Marx the opposite, communism is no money, wages, prices, and no markets.
“Keynes argued that the solution to the Great Depression was to stimulate the economy (“inducement to invest”) through some combination of two approaches:
A reduction in interest rates (monetary policy), and
Government investment in infrastructure (fiscal policy).”
“The multiplier dates to work in the 1890s by the Australian economist Alfred De Lissa, the Danish economist Julius Wulff, and the German American economist Nicholas Johannsen, the latter being cited in a footnote of Keynes. Nicholas Johannsen also proposed a theory of effective demand in the 1890s.
The paradox of thrift was stated in 1892 by John M. Robertson in his The Fallacy of Savings, in earlier forms by mercantilist economists since the 16th century, and similar sentiments date to antiquity.”
“Today these ideas, regardless of provenance, are referred to in academia under the rubric of “Keynesian economics”, due to Keynes’s role in consolidating, elaborating, and popularizing them.”
The other articles of inequality while I share various sentiments with the authors they are not really talking about what is going on.
In the U.S. and Europe the middle class is shrinking because it has moved to China/India/Brazil. The middle class jobs have moved and they have moved because people buy cheap stuff from China instead of stuff made in the U.S.
Southern Europe has a huge problem with unemployment. But what does Greece make produce? Feta cheese and olive oil?
People in the U.S. and Europe have let primary production/manufacturing of foods and product move to Mexico/south America and China/Asia and so its no wonder that those countries are rising and the U.S. and Europe are sinking.
I mean just the most basic understanding of economics tells you what the results will be. But most in the U.S. and Europe don’t understand economics and think that their high standard of living is just a given.
“White privilege” can’t be ruled out here. It is no coincidence that we in the U.S. and Europe have arrived post colonialism post industrial at a higher standard of living than at any time in history and now we think it should be just given as if by right.
And we thought we could let the rest of the world work for us and we’d just enjoy all the new toys and our standard of living would magiclly stay the same and keep rising.
But don’t get me wrong I favor social programs, public schools and roads, etc..
Okay, I’ll add on as I think with what you have written. I’m starting bottom up– nice reply in addressing the topic at hand. You state:
“I mean just the most basic understanding of economics tells you what the results will be. But most in the U.S. and Europe don’t understand economics and think that their high standard of living is just a given.
“White privilege” can’t be ruled out here. It is no coincidence that we in the U.S. and Europe have arrived post colonialism post industrial at a higher standard of living than at any time in history and now we think it should be just given as if by right.
And we thought we could let the rest of the world work for us and we’d just enjoy all the new toys and our standard of living would magically stay the same and keep rising.”
I think there’s no basic understanding of economics and to a large extent that is why Krugman is changing his position a bit (especially re China). One shared assertion among the many specialized fields of studies is technology is driving change so fast that most scholars agree that to even study history is a flawed premise in making predications about the future. Hence your TED talk by Martin Jacques and another academic scholar in the field of education who shares the false premise to predict future outcomes is Ken Robinson. His book “The Element” speaks about how like scholars in the academia missed the mark in the UK–which they’re in the process of correcting through reforms–and he is hoping to help the United States education system because we are experiencing a similar crisis.
I’m not specialized in any particular field of study–working on finishing a BA in Religious Studies–and have 3 professional certification in business. I study on my own under the direction of recommended reads/studies my professors have been generous enough to guide me with because they have internalized my interests which I never really pinpointed myself. Meaning, I’ve always been kind of philosophical but would become annoyed because I understood conversational feedback to be more critical about the way I think and questions rather than offering more grounded constructive criticism. But it needs to be said, this has been in the course my life experience, work history, professional certifications, field of work–both paying positions and volunteer work–and higher education. Simply its been an on going process, but I will say a pattern among some (not all) relationships and communication misunderstandings.
And this ties into what Harvey reiterates that its not inconsistency but interpretation and misunderstanding. In thinking about and watching/reading your links I’ve been revisiting some philosophical question re literary work that a 13 week trimester didn’t allow me the time I needed to investigate remaining questions in an authors theme and running thread throughout his/her novel and/ or short story that I found provoking.
That said, I’m not getting of topic, more picking-up on the BRIC economies you mentioned, hoping to demonstrate these similar philosophical questions we are discussing through a Eurocentric lens and the effects of globalization. These are shared philosophical inquiries in works of literature not well explored or maybe underplayed by men and women whose roots are grounded in what has been coined “third world economies,” that are peoples generalized as less superior when these are simply peoples of nations labeled as “third world” for not participating in the rival in the Cold War.
Which bring me to the point I wish to make since I’ve been spending some time reflecting on different works in literature drawing on this deeply human philosophical questions we are discussing. Two such authors from polar opposites points of view are Chinua Achebe’s (who recently past away) novel “Things Fall Apart” and Wole Soyinka famous play “Death and The Kind’s Horseman. I draw on Soyinka because similar to Havey’s statement about misinterpretation, the thrust of Soyinka’s running thread and the climax of his play is that of interpretation. Saying this and in thinking of studying history (think of your Confucius quote here) Soyinka’s assertion is human failure is tied to misunderstanding or misinterpretations. That is our shared human weakness.
Do we really have a desire to be accountable in thinking of your comment about blaming Apple and its time to take responsibility and accountability–internalizing these questions which could have real consequence re behavior in the real world or an exercise in throwing links, siting sources with little effect and work involved in the communities we participate in?
I have concerns re the cognitive sciences because it is the predominate behavioral science model being utilized by school psychologists in the community I live. The reason for my concerns in simply because the evidence based results are now in after a 10 year study targeting the county I live in compared to the rest of the state. The data suggests poorer results for completing high school and continuing to post secondary education or having a skill/trade compared to education outcomes in the rest of the state.
Now, I’m NO expert in cognitive science, but I have been given the tools in the discipline of critical analysis to question the assumptions based on the results of the data and raise question if I am to honest respecting the academics in various specialized fields who I consider to be my mentors in critical analysis. I think this not only to be academically honest (which is something that has been drilled into me by my AA in RS) but as a model of thinking behavior as a parent, and a community member within the large society I participate in.
These are questions of importance to me on a micro scale WITHIN the broader scale of macroeconomics due to globalization. But to answer your question I think having a “white privilege” that I equate to having a “white complex” re ethical questions is self defeating and not a good argument. I mean check into Ama Ata Aidoo if you further want to explore the “white privilege” argument from the view point of an African woman in dialogue with African American’s.
Super wow! A lot here but two things stand out.
“Do we really have a desire to be accountable in thinking of your comment about blaming Apple and its time to take responsibility and accountability–internalizing these questions which could have real consequence re behavior in the real world or an exercise in throwing links, siting sources with little effect and work involved in the communities we participate in?”
Wow. That is the question isn’t it. It seems in many things people want to displace blame and not to take responsibility. Or to try to make some one else be responsible for them.
“But to answer your question I think having a “white privilege” that I equate to having a “white complex” re ethical questions is self defeating and not a good argument. ”
My thought was in the big picture sense not to have a “white complex” but if we look at Europe and North America we have gotten to this moment of high standards of living in large part due to slavery/colonialism/exploitation/etc..
And now we think it should be given as if by right.
People in the U.S. think they should be given food for example but the food is produced by exploiting migrant workers because white Americans won’t do that.
They are too good to do that.
I was listening to NPR a while back about immigration and migrant workers.
A spokesman for Georgia said they pay $15 an hour to workers and they’ve tried and tried to get Americans to do the jobs, but most won’t even apply or if they do they don’t go back or they physically can not do the work.
We can see in Europe, in Greece and Spain, the governments have borrowed and borrowed to try to keep people at certain standards of living and then at some point you just run out of other people’s money.
They don’t have jobs but a friend has her brother in Greece and they bring in Pakistanis and Albanians and others to harvest their olive crops.
“The problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people’s money” Margaret Thatcher
“Government is the great fiction, through which everybody endeavors to live at the expense of everybody else.”
I think it is no coincidence that socialist movements really started in Europe post colonialism and post industrial when people had arrived at a higher standard of living.
And although I’m a “liberal” and I agree with much of the moral sentiments of social justice and equality and redistributive justice and concern for the suffering of others.
It seems to me that at the heart of much of socialism/communism is in fact not altruism and charity but selfishness.
“I” want people to work for me and give me stuff free and feed me and be responsible for me.
“I” want the government by use of force or threat of force to take money and goods away from other people and give them to me and make them work for me.
“re ethical questions is self defeating and not a good argument”
I agree so my thoughts above are not really an argument but just a thought or two.
But I’m still pondering all of this and our current economic situation, how we got here, what a future with China as the largest and strongest economy will be, the rise of India and Brazil, so I don’t know.
I’m unclear what your thinking is re “how we got here.” You state, “My thought was in the big picture sense not to have a “white complex” but if we look at Europe and North America we have gotten to this moment of high standards of living in large part due to slavery/colonialism/exploitation/etc.. .”
Do you acknowledge it needs to be said its perhaps the way western technological advances were utilized in diving the conditions I quoted above?
Are you a proponent for laissez-faire capitalism?
“Are you a proponent for laissez-faire capitalism?”
No, I think a long the lines of Joseph Heath. But I think there has to be a balance of Keynes and Hayek.
“Do you acknowledge it needs to be said its perhaps the way western technological advances were utilized in diving the conditions I quoted above?”
I don’t know. I’m still thinking through these things. I don’t know if I’ll get “the answer” but I’m trying to get a better understanding of the questions and issues.
About western technologies, hmm, that’s such a broad stroke, there have been some mistakes with technologies but there have also been great life extending and bettering technologies.
I think there has been a lack of responsibility on the part of Europeans and north Americans. We say we need jobs but we bring in people to do the jobs we don’t want to do.
We pay people unemployment, but we also say we need public works programs done.
We complain about corporations moving jobs to China but if we didn’t buy those products they would move those factories back quickly.
We’ve arrived at the post colonialist life style and the rest of the world is now catching up to us and perhaps will pass us in some ways/things.
We’ve let the real engine of the economy manufacturing and food production slip more and more to other countries and we have to barrow money to buy goods from them.
I don’t think there’s any one thing or person/group/corporation to blame.
I think there have been some hard choices that needed to be made, there are no painless choices at this point, some ones taxes have to go up and some services/spending will have to be cut, even if we cut the military that is some one’s jobs and insurance, they may lose their home etc.
I don’t know.
“About western technologies, hmm, that’s such a broad stroke, there have been some mistakes with technologies but there have also been great life extending and bettering technologies.”
Yes it was intentionally because of your statement:
“My thought was in the big picture sense not to have a “white complex” but if we look at Europe and North America we have gotten to this moment of high standards of living in large part due to slavery/colonialism/exploitation/etc.”
At present I lean toward it is how we utilize technologies. I thought about this a lot because a corporation moved into my area and to a large degree they shut down competition and they are a non-profit organization. So for me re local community initiatives it was an ethical challenge. But, as I posted somewhere in this thread, GE who is one among the largest employers has decided to relocate 950 union jobs to a new facility in Texas (no union). Of course it makes efficiency sense in that they are shipping to China.
I mention because I think this real-time situation will effect people and community and is relevant re the big picture and this discussion. So, how much can people be accountable when the power of production is nil to none? Well, that’s where I agree with you that its a combination of Keynes and Hayek. And, I would add that corporation and institution are interchangeable here in sociological terms. Implosion happens within and I keep that in the back of my mind be it a corporation like GE or any Institution.
But, I agree with you for the most part although I can’t say I’ve had much backing. Its kind of depressing to hear “its every man for themselves” by progressives. I’m criticizing the idea not the people who meme the slogan.
Altruism is a difficult one. I’ve done some pretty humiliating things for friends when they have out themselves in a compromising position. Do I regret it? Nope. Do I care what people think about me? Nope.
Anyway, I’m hoping to learn more about altruism and selfishness tomorrow. I’ve chosen Eastern philosophy for my summer learning experience. We will see!
Another good source is Robert Frank. http://www.princeton.edu/~tleonard/reviews/Falling.pdf
@ Tammy and dmf I just reread the last comment and I didn’t mean “desire to escape reality” to be offensive.
In a way that Marx and the many inspired by his thought are motivated for social justice and liberation is a good thing. And to make change and to bring awareness to these kinds of thought and subjects need to happen.
But I’m still thinking of the above blog post in reference to “Francis Fukuyama declared the “End of History;” the failure and death of both Marxist thought and political movements”
And his point was that what is the alternative to some form of social/liberal democracy?
And what is the alternative to some form of regulated markets and pricing systems?
And communism was an attempt to do away with to do away with markets and pricing.
But even the Soviet Union had to marketize the system and calculate prices.
The links you given me are great philosophical or moral objections but not an alternative economic system.
So I guess Marx is good and relevant in regards to bringing awareness to social justice issues but not to economics. And that was Fukuyama’s point.
q, I don’t take offense (and not a supernaturalist was just commenting on the sociology/politics of the RCC) and also don’t identify with neo-marxists but rather with folks like Bifo who are trying to come to grips with the facts/collapses as they are unfolding, what if there is no overarching economic model(s) to replace our current (and often highly engineered) ways of exchange (which are not Unified) and yet those very modes of exchange are imploding while wrecking our environment and our efforts at statecraft as they go, Fukuyama (who I think has stepped back some from his earlier position as a neo-con confidence man) and all seem to be whistling thru the graveyard…
you might like
Periodic Apocalypse #2: Extermination of the Human Host??? podcast/mp3
How parasitic capitalism consumes, controls, and confines with Daniel Ceffeen Ph.D who was recently on the Partially Examined Life podcast on Deluze and Guattari. I’ve listened all of his podcasts.
Daniel Coffeen’s other podcasts
thanks I’ll check it out.
“Exits to the post-human future and after the drones”
You might find Robert Nelson of interest re economics.
if you decide to listen to the podcast it plays this song at one point
Adam Freeland – We Want Your Soul
I’ll add it to the list.
Wayne Schroeder says
Wow, what a creative series of interactions–you guys rock. Dan Siegel’s work is grounded and powerful.
qapla: “How parasitic capitalism consumes, controls, and confines with Daniel Ceffeen Ph.D who was recently on the Partially Examined Life podcast on Deluze and Guattari.”
Also see Daniel Smith’s lectures on Anti-Oedipus and his treatment of capitalism: http://deleuzeguattari.wordpress.com/2009/09/01/daniel-smiths-lectures/
This series of interactions reflects the purpose of PEL, non professionals thinking philosophically. Well done (doing)–Wayne.
Wayne, Daniel Smith’s links are broken (reading file not found). I really enjoyed D&R but the vocabulary was heavy going. Have you read any of Thomas Merton’s work and if you have did you notice many of their shared thinking?
Wayne Schroeder says
Tammy, here is another link to Daniel Smith’s lectures on Anti-Oedipus:
I have read Merton some time ago. I recall his focus on spirituality rather than ideology, but will have to look again for similarities.
Wayne! I’m so glad you’re here! This is awesome!
I really wish we could get a group study re Merton’s work embodied in his book titled, “Love and Living.” The reason is because I think you would be pleasantly surprised how close Merton and Deleuze are. It’s just wild, Wayne, I mean mind blowing wild!
One more thing, do you see what’s going on in Brazil and with Snowden seeking asylum? It’s like rereading Jorge Luis Borges “The Garden of Forking Paths”! Something is off and I’m going to figure it out. I’ll have to go into our D&R group discussion but later.
This is humbling, Wayne. I’ve finished listening to the first day lecture. I argued a similar argument when having to pick what I thought was the greatest invention affecting the United States in WH 1945 – present (Keynes was my choice for WHIII). The only feedback I got was my argument isn’t history and I should have utilizing the words “western free market system” in place of Capitalism. Which was okay and I really like my professor and have much respect.
I’m want to ask you a question which I’ll send if it’s okay.
Wayne – The question I wanted to ask was answered in day 3 lecture “A Thousand Plateaus & Nomadology.”
Wayne Schroeder says
Deleuze and Guattari have provided the ground for interpreting the flow of capitalism in terms of territorialization (actuality), the play of forces as expressed financially, as revealed in the inter-global financial debacle of 2008, and as now revealed in a nomadic territorilaization of a supra-financial entity which is no longer territorialized by any nation per se, but has its supra-national existence in the nodes of international financial connections on the digital plane of the internet and instantaneous wiring of “money” inter-globally. Virtuality is continually actualized in new planes of existence, for good or ill, but according to well defined concepts.
“’Keynes “General Theory of Employment, Interest, and Money,” actual utilized Marx ideas (government intervention)’
Completely off. Completely misunderstand/represent Marx. Keynes was working within and building on classical British economics and Marx the opposite, communism is no money, wages, prices, and no markets.”
My primary source is David Harvey. Here is a book review you can read (while I will postpone judgment [not of you but your assertion]) too think about being completely off:
“Barry Biddulph reviews David Harvey’s The Enigma of Capital (2011, Profile Books, £8.99).
David Harvey is something of an enigma. He wants to place Marx’s vision of Capitalism centre stage, yet he finds Keynes more relevant than Marx for a solution to Capitalist slumps. He agrees with Keynes’s diagnosis of the causes of the Great Depression of the 1930s, as a problem of insufficiency of effective demand. Moreover, Harvey states that today’s Great Recession “has placed the development of consumer and rising effective demand at the centre of the sustainability of contemporary Capitalism in ways that Marx for one would have found hard to recognise” . (1) The relevance of Marx for Harvey is that Neo Liberalism has turned the clock back to pre Keynesian economics.
According to Harvey, “there has been a serious underlying problem, particularly since the crisis of 1973-82, about how to absorb greater and greater amounts of capital surplus in the production of goods and services”. (5) This is Harvey’s underconsumpionist mantra. Surplus capacity looking for customers. This is the point where Paul Sweezy meets Keynes to supplement Marx or in Harvey’s words, where Keynes and Marx overlap. This is the core underconsumptionist assumption, that there is a fundamental structural problem of capitalist production : the capacity to produce grows more rapidly than its output. It’s a more serious problem for Harvey, than say, any notion of a tendency for a falling rate of profit. Indeed, Harvey does not think Marx’s theory of a tendency for the rate of profit to fall, in Capitalism, works : “unfortunately the argument is incomplete and problematic-there is no definite reason why the ratio C/V should increase in the way Marx says it should”. (6) This is the claim Marx was logically inconsistent, which Paul Sweezy and others have made. However, Harvey makes no reference to the ongoing debate on this issue or deal with the points made in defence of Marx’s logic by such thinkers as Rosdolsky, Kliman, and others. They argue that it’s not a matter of inconsistency, but interpretation or misinterpretation.”
According to Harvey Keynes and Marx overlap, and I agree this is where misinterpretation comes into play.
With great respect.
Wow! Where to begin. I apologize for the “completely off” I was thinking as I was working today that that was too harsh. Sorry. I’ve really enjoyed the challenges to reconsider my points of view and new info from you and others here.
I think Harvey is trying to be kind to Marx and to show liberals the way forward is Keynes (regulated free market system) and not Marx.
Because my reading of the above and the review itself, except for the words “Keynes and Marx overlap” he’s pointing out many ways they do not.
The reason that they would over lap in some way is they are trying to talk about markets and capital etc..
It could be said in that way Milton Freedman over laps with Marx as well because they are talking about money and markets etc.
The influence of Marx on Keynes and Hayek is there, but not in the way you first wanted to imply. Keynes and Hayek are arguing against Marx and it was Keynes and Hayek, as well as the failure of the Soviet Union and China giving up on communism, that have most discredited and disproven Marx’s economics ideas.
In the review Barry Biddulph is alluding to the many ways that Marx’s economics ideas have been discredited and given up on. Marx’s economic analysis is based on the discredited labor theory of value.
Marx was wrong about the boom and bust and Keynes and Hayek were right.
Marx was wrong about money, incentives, wages, price, markets etc.
“Critics who have alleged that Marx has been proved internally inconsistent include former and current Marxian and/or Sraffian economists, such as Paul Sweezy,…. who propose that the field be grounded in their correct versions of Marxian economics instead of in Marx’s critique of political economy in the original form in which he presented and developed it in Capital.”
So to try to make Marx work you have to say Marx was wrong even if you are a Marxist.
John Maynard Keynes referred to Das Kapital as “an obsolete textbook which I know to be not only scientifically erroneous but without interest or application for the modern world”
I’m not sure if I can comment that Marx is wrong even if you are a Marxist because I’m not a Marxist.
Re: “I think Harvey is trying to be kind to Marx and to show liberals the way forward is Keynes (regulated free market system) and not Marx.” I’m not sure about this because according to a excerpt from a book I would like to read, Keynes is quoted as saying, ” “My purpose in this essay,” he wrote, “is not to examine the present … but to disembarrass myself of short views and take wings into the future.” But again, if I’m comprehending the growing tension within various fields of study, because technology is driving change so fast scholars in specific fields are cautious to make absolute statements of right and wrong.
“The last, and deepest, objection to our project concerns its supposedly illiberal character. A liberal state, John Rawls and others have taught us to believe, embodies no positive vision but only such principles as are necessary for people of different tastes and ideals to live together in harmony. To promote, as a matter of public policy, a positive idea of the good life is by definition illiberal, perhaps even totalitarian. This view rests on a thorough misconception of liberalism. Through most of its long history, the liberal tradition was imbued with classical and Christian ideals of dignity, civility, and tolerance. (“Liberal,” we should remember, originally designated what was appropriate to a free man, a usage surviving in phrases such as “liberal arts.”)”
And, in a Yale course “Marx’s Theory of Capitalism” regarding relative and absolute surplus values and rate of exploitation in Capitalism according to Marx is not the move from A-B but the move from A to C–technology. (42.00)
Let me think about this.
With great respect.
“The last, and deepest, objection to our project concerns its supposedly illiberal character. A liberal state, John Rawls and others have taught us to believe, embodies no positive vision but only such principles as are necessary for people of different tastes and ideals to live together in harmony. To promote, as a matter of public policy, a positive idea of the good life is by definition illiberal, perhaps even totalitarian. This view rests on a thorough misconception of liberalism. Through most of its long history, the liberal tradition was imbued with classical and Christian ideals of dignity, civility, and tolerance. ”
Awesome quote there. That’s really what Hayek talked about in The Road to Serfdom
“Hayek argues that Western democracies, including the United Kingdom and the United States, have “progressively abandoned that freedom in economic affairs without which personal and political freedom has never existed in the past”. Society has mistakenly tried to ensure continuing prosperity by centralized planning, which inevitably leads to totalitarianism. “We have in effect undertaken to dispense with the forces which produced unforeseen results and to replace the impersonal and anonymous mechanism of the market by collective and ‘conscious’ direction of all social forces to deliberately chosen goals.” Socialism, while presented as a means of assuring equality, does so through “restraint and servitude”, while “democracy seeks equality in liberty”. Planning, because coercive, is an inferior method of regulation, while the competition of a free market is superior “because it is the only method by which our activities can be adjusted to each other without coercive or arbitrary intervention of authority”.
Centralized planning is inherently undemocratic in Hayek’s view, because it requires “that the will of a small minority be imposed upon the people”. The power of these minorities to act by taking money or property in pursuit of centralized goals, destroys the Rule of Law and individual freedoms. Where there is centralized planning, “the individual would more than ever become a mere means, to be used by the authority in the service of such abstractions as the ‘social welfare’ or the ‘good of the community'”. Even the very poor have more personal freedom in an open society than a centrally planned one.”[W]hile the last resort of a competitive economy is the bailiff, the ultimate sanction of a planned economy is the hangman.” Socialism is a hypocritical system, because its professed humanitarian goals can only be put into practice by brutal methods “of which most socialists disapprove”. Such centralized systems also require effective propaganda, so that the people come to believe that the state’s goals are theirs”
It is therefore ironic as the author In Praise of Leisure points out to be a modern “liberal” is to wish for totalitarianism and not freedom. “the aim of policy and other forms of collective action should be to secure an economic organization that places the good things of life—health, respect, friendship, leisure, and so on—within reach of all.” The government is going to sell us free on a lunch if we submit to serfdom. Not to mention the loss of freedoms in the name of morality and security/antiterrorism.
I watched Marx’s Theory of Capitalism. Seems like a contradiction in terms. It’s a good rehash of Marx.
I like and sympathize with some of his arguments and ideals and critiques of capitalism, and I’m not a Marxist either, but Marxist theory contends that socialism is a transitional stage on the road to communism.
So critiquing or changing things within capitalism or regulated free market systems can be done.
His shift from a market system to communism is a problem. For reasons Joesph Heath talked about in the podcast and I’ve gone over above.
Which supports Fukuyama’s point above.
“Fukuyama is best known for his book The End of History and the Last Man (1992), which argued that the worldwide spread of liberal democracies and free market capitalism of the West and its lifestyle may signal the end point of humanity’s sociocultural evolution and become the final form of human government.”
Or at least be for some time to come.
Maybe in the future, when we create a replicator like in Star Trek, we can move away from capitalism/markets and we can have Marx’s utopia.
“Already long ago, from when we sold our vote to no man, the People have abdicated our duties; for the People who once upon a time handed out military command, high civil office, legions — everything, now restrains itself and anxiously hopes for just two things: bread and circuses”
Roman poet Juvenal
‘Give them bread and circuses and they will never revolt’