An economics, investment, trading and policy blog with a focus on Modern Monetary Theory (MMT). We seek the truth, avoid the mainstream and are virulently anti-neoliberalism.
What surprises me is the amount of young people that think it is okay and doesn't need changing. I can think of two reasons: 1. These young Americans are fairly well off. 2. Right Wing Capitalist propaganda is very effective. I'm not a communist. I think it is quite natural for people start to up businesses to gain a better standard of living. Some people are uniquely talented and want to practice their art and skills. The world is a massively better off place because of the products and services that very talented people have brought to the market place. Think of IBM and computers, and the many pioneering medical procedures and technologies that have improved and extended people's lives. With further advances and technology may even be able to successfully combat climate change, and stem world population growth in a way that people find entirely acceptable.It's the type of capitalism we have that is wrong. This is really fascism mixed in with propaganda. It's drilled into us from early childhood so that we think that there is no alterative. This type of faux capitalism is really a cover for the ruling elite to get away with their looting on a grand scale. And the US doesn't really believe in free markets and fair competition, it believes in gunboat diplomacy and piracy. Might is Right. For too many people in the world hard work doesn't pay. They can do all the hours under the sun but they still remain dead poor. In fact they are doing all the hours under the sun anyway. Maybe perpetual war is the ultimate form of competition in a very Right Wing society. It seems to be.
I'm not a communist. I think it is quite natural for people start to up businesses to gain a better standard of living.Marx was OK with that. He was not against distributed ownership of private property but rather concentrated ownership of private ownership amounting to control of the means of production.The basic paradigm that Marx was working out of was the same as the other classical economists, that is, the transition from feudalism based on land title, where the holder of the title lived from the produce of the land without contributing productively. This is the classical basis of economic rent.Marx viewed the transition from feudalism to capitalism that was taking place as the replacement of land "lords" with capitalists as the "lords" of technology. In the age of agriculture, land had been the primary means of production. In the industrial age, technology was the primary means of production. The factory simply repelled the field and the type of ownership shifted. But the extraction of rent remained essentially the same.Of course, with the efficiencies of scale, there is no going back to the small farm or mom & pop shop. A new system needs to be developed that preserves the efficiencies of scale while elimination rent extraction.Totalitarian communism under Marxism-Leninism, and Marxism-Leninism-Maoism failed in doing this. Now China is trying a new market-based approach to socialism under Dengism and Xi-iism. while in the West the thinking is running more toward cooperatives such as worker-user-supplier cooperatives.Marx held that use value was the "real value" and exchange value that included a premium over use value involved rent. The socio-economic objective is to eliminate rent so that exchange involves only use value. This is the true meaning of barter, where value is determined by productive contribution alone, without not rent accruing from monetary production. Then monetary value is just a proxy for productive contribution.For Marx, the "money illusion" is the conflation of use value with exchange value in monetary value in markets. Without understanding the shell game of how rent is created through money, economics is just going to be a way of masking rent extraction.Why is this so important? rent extraction involved unpaid work, which is a definition of slavery.Marx was a libertarian of the left, that is, socially based libertarianism rather than individually based, in that he was concerned chiefly with universal freedom to the degree that the "forces of production" permitted both leisure and choice as shared benefits of socio-economic productivity. This means that the forces of production and the relations of production have to be organized in such a way so to result in cultural and institutional egalitarianism, although not exact economic equality.The basic idea is that the forces of production arise from a commons. IF the relations of production are such that distribution is asymmetrical, then power is being exerted by a few in order to concentrate (enclose) benefits based on power relationships. This is the basis of class distinctions and inter-class exploitation.For this reason, consideration of class, power and economic rent are excluded from conventional economics.
Thanks Tom. I was born in London in 1958 and the government run the essential services. I loved the London Underground 🚇 which filled me with awe, and the London Transport buses as well. The school was run by the authorities, and we had regular medical checkups from a NHS doctor and a dentist. British Rail was awesome and I loved the old train stations. The Royal Mail red pillar boxes were everywhere, and so were the manhole covers with ER on. And then there was the mighty BBC. They were happy days and so I would like to see the mixed economy again. And I have no problem with the government supplying the gas and electricity either.Collectivism felt very reassuring.
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