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There is likely no exit from Quantitative Easing

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There is a lot of talk in policy circles and among speculators on Wall Street that the Federal Reserve will begin to ‘taper off’ its wholesale counterfeiting of fiat dollars before the end of the year. Whether or not this happens, I think any attempt to taper off counterfeiting dollars will have to be reversed in short order. The reason …

JehuThere is likely no exit from Quantitative Easing
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Follow the money …

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Barbarism, Fascism or the American System I am still looking for a good formulation of the idea that Washington is using the dollar to control all capital in the world market. And it ain’t easy. I think the elements of the basic argument can be found in Anitra Nelson’s, Claus Germer’s and Suzanne de Brunhoff’s chapters in “Marx’s Theory of …

JehuFollow the money …
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The critical role of gold in labor theory (part 2)

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In the first part of this series, I make the following statements: The role of a commodity money in labor theory analysis is not determined by the material the state designates as money in the territory under its control, but by society. Gold (commodity monies generally) still performs the function of measure of value and standard of price despite this …

JehuThe critical role of gold in labor theory (part 2)
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The critical role of gold in labor theory analysis

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1. Was Marx fundamentally wrong in his theory of money Does the end of Bretton Woods and of the gold standard invalidate Marx’s argument on money? (When I say ‘gold’ in this case, of course, I mean any commodity serving in the role of money.) This is the question raised by George Caffentzis, in a 2009 paper, Marxism After the …

JehuThe critical role of gold in labor theory analysis
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Can We Completely Abolish Labor, Right Now (Final)

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7. The Centrality of Labor in Marx At the start of this series I noted that, according to Elmar Flatschart, wertkritik states the abolition of labor is not the same as social emancipation. In his view, the abolition of value is only a condition of social emancipation, but social emancipation itself is a more complex problem. At first glance this …

JehuCan We Completely Abolish Labor, Right Now (Final)
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What is the difference between Association and the State?

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Certain Marxists have their own weasel words to cover their statist inclination. Unless pressed to demonstrate it, they routinely refer to the Dictatorship of the Proletariat (as one person stated to me) as “a ruling class’ instrument of the suppression of class enemies”. The employment of coercion against the capitalists, they assert, means the association of the working class is …

JehuWhat is the difference between Association and the State?
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Can Antistatist Communists work with Statist Communists?

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In one of my earlier posts, I accused some Marxists of being fascists. Needless to say this did not go over well with those Marxists who might fall into the category of people who, although claiming to be communists, nevertheless believe any attempt to actually dismantle the present state amounts to a neoliberal assault on the so-called ‘social safety net’ …

JehuCan Antistatist Communists work with Statist Communists?

Can We Completely Abolish Labor, Right Now (Part 3)

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5. Capitalistically Determined, Materially Determined and Superfluous labor times If I understand Postone’s argument in his book Time, Labor and Social Domination, (and he can speak to this if I am misreading him) in the capitalist mode of production value (i.e., ‘socially necessary labor time’) appears in not one, but two distinct, historically determined forms. So far as I know, …

JehuCan We Completely Abolish Labor, Right Now (Part 3)
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Can We Completely Abolish Labor, Right Now? (Part 2)

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3. The problem of identifying economic waste in a capitalist economy As I argued in the previous section of this series, if we are going to set as our aim the complete abolition of labor, there is a big question posed by the problem of a capitalist economy. To reiterate it briefly: In an economy based on directly social labor, …

JehuCan We Completely Abolish Labor, Right Now? (Part 2)
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Social Emancipation and Socially Necessary Labor Time

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At a recent conference sponsored by the Platypus group, Elmar Flatschart spoke of the most important abstraction existing in our society today, value, and stated: “Marxism shouldn’t be understood as an identity-giving, wholesome position, which history proved to be erroneous, but should be reduced to a theoretical core that can help us to understand society, via a negative critique, even …

JehuSocial Emancipation and Socially Necessary Labor Time
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Clever Monkey versus the Accelerationists (2)

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Part Two: (Nick) Land, Capital and Labor (Theory) Clever Monkey’s argument against the accelerationists seems to rest on a precise formulaic incantation repeated over and over: the only accelerationism possible is Nick Land’s accelerationism. Thus accelerationism itself is merely a virulent subform of neoliberalist ideology that advocates commodification of all human relations. Which is to say all talk of accelerationism …

JehuClever Monkey versus the Accelerationists (2)
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Clever Monkey versus the Accelerationists (1)

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Part One: The Grammar of Left Fascism Twice in the past couple of weeks I Have been accused of being infected with an ideology known as accelerationism. To be honest, I had no idea what accelerationism was and never heard of it until the accusation was made. Nevertheless, I do accept the argument that ignorance of an ideology is no …

JehuClever Monkey versus the Accelerationists (1)
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My May Day Post: How Kautsky and Lenin Fundamentally Revised Marx

Jehu Anarchism, Featured, Marxism, The Commune Leave a Comment

Part One: “… the consciousness of the necessity of a fundamental revolution” In the Communist Manifesto, Marx writes: “Does it require deep intuition to comprehend that man’s ideas, views, and conception, in one word, man’s consciousness, changes with every change in the conditions of his material existence, in his social relations and in his social life?” In this statement Marx …

JehuMy May Day Post: How Kautsky and Lenin Fundamentally Revised Marx
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Where the fuck is the ‘revolutionary subject’ in the European crisis?

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An interesting question from George Magnus of the banking giant UBS via Zero Hedge: “Why Are The European Streets Relatively Quiet?” To understand the background of Magnus’s question we have to go to 2010. At that time, the economist Michael Pettis predicted Europe would have three years or or so to impose its “labor restructuring” before all hell broke loose …

JehuWhere the fuck is the ‘revolutionary subject’ in the European crisis?
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Change the World Without Taking Power: A decade later John Holloway’s challenge still unmet (Final)

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Part 4: History as a continuous process One of the real difficulties Holloway’s thesis on the crisis of capitalism poses to a critical analysis is that his very incisive critique of the failings of post-war Marxism is buried under his own terribly flawed grasp of labor theory. For instance, Holloway rightly criticizes the dominant Marxist view of capitalist crises as …

JehuChange the World Without Taking Power: A decade later John Holloway’s challenge still unmet (Final)
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Change the World Without Taking Power: A decade later John Holloway’s challenge still unmet (3)

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Part 3: History as a hall of mirrors What I find really interesting about Holloway is his determination to carry his argument to its final conclusion, no matter how it appears to conflict with decades of accumulated Marxist dogmas and even his own poor grasp of the basics of labor theory. His attitude can be best summed up by his …

JehuChange the World Without Taking Power: A decade later John Holloway’s challenge still unmet (3)
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Change the World Without Taking Power: A decade later John Holloway’s challenge still unmet (2)

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Part 2: Throwing Marx and Engels under the bus In the first part of this series, I noted that one of the peculiar difficulties of Holloway encounters in his main thesis is that almost all of the criticisms he directs at post-war Marxism seem to equally apply to Marx’s and Engels’ own advice to the working class to fight for …

JehuChange the World Without Taking Power: A decade later John Holloway’s challenge still unmet (2)

Change the World Without Taking Power: A decade later John Holloway’s challenge still unmet

Jehu Class War, Featured, Marxism, Socialism, The Commune Leave a Comment

A decades ago John Holloway shook up the Marxist academy with the publication of his book, Change The World Without Taking Power”. Holloway’s argument was that the Marxist preoccupation with taking power was not only obsolete, it was counterproductive, serving only to divert energy and time to a quixotic effort that leaves Marxists banging their heads bloody against the brick …

JehuChange the World Without Taking Power: A decade later John Holloway’s challenge still unmet

Why the Communist Party USA is Wrong on Guns, and Everything

Zak Drabczyk Featured, The Commune 1 Comment

Update: Personal obligations have kept me at bay, temporarily preventing me from extending upon my series of articles against Austrian Economics. Rest assured, these articles will return in the following week. Introduction The history of the Communist Party is one as fluctuating as the history of the Left itself. The Communist Party USA (CPUSA) was once a militant and working …

Zak DrabczykWhy the Communist Party USA is Wrong on Guns, and Everything
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Panitch on the lack of ambition and self-confidence of the Left

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In 2011, Leo Panitch wrote a piece, The Left’s Crisis, examining the Left’s response to the present crisis. He noted the Left’s response could be broken into two types: “irresponsible” and “fundamentally misleading”. In the irresponsible group, he puts those who called on Washington to let the banks fail, which, he asserted, gave no thought to the consequences of such …

JehuPanitch on the lack of ambition and self-confidence of the Left
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Ludwig von Mises and the demise of the Austrian School (2)

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Part Two: “Lies, damned lies and statistics” In part one of this series I made four points: Critical socialism is not the same thing as socialism proper: the first is a political criticism of capitalism, the second is a process created by capitalism itself. Socialism proper is nothing more than a transition from individual production and exchange to directly social …

JehuLudwig von Mises and the demise of the Austrian School (2)
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Ludwig von Mises and the demise of the Austrian School:

Jehu Featured, The Commune 1 Comment

Since Zak Drabczyk has been having a lot of fun stomping on the basic and sacred arguments of the Austrian-school-type regressive anarchist trend centered on the Mises Institute, I thought I would pile on and get in a few punches on my own. So, at the request of an anarchist on twitter, @adamblacksburg, I wrote up this two part critique …

JehuLudwig von Mises and the demise of the Austrian School:
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The strange case of the missing “Revolutionary Subject”

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In his dissertation, “Marx’s concept of the transcendence of value production” Peter Hudis levels an interesting criticism at Moishe Postone: “Since Postone thinks that capital is the subject of modern society, and not the workers or other forces of liberation, he is led to argue that the alternative to capital will ultimately emerge not from the development of human agents …

JehuThe strange case of the missing “Revolutionary Subject”
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Deconstructing the main thesis of Andrew Kliman’s “The Failure of Capitalist Production”

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The fundamental problem of fascist state data Interesting argument by Andrew Kliman in his book, “The Failure of Capitalist Production”: the rate of profit tends to fall; but this tendency is “reversed” by the destruction of capital. I keep looking at this statement because it seems suspiciously widely accepted by Marxists all of a sudden. Kliman states it this way: …

JehuDeconstructing the main thesis of Andrew Kliman’s “The Failure of Capitalist Production”

Marxism Against Gun Control: Why Marxists Should Oppose Gun Control

Zak Drabczyk Featured, The Commune 2 Comments

Introduction The horrific tragedy that took place on Friday, December 14th 2012 cannot be expressed in words. The actions of one gunman forever altered the lives of countless families and the discourse surrounding gun control in the United States. I will not spend any time trying to dissect the motives or nature of the gunman; I am not a psychiatrist. …

Zak DrabczykMarxism Against Gun Control: Why Marxists Should Oppose Gun Control