Anyway Thursday’s topic is “work as a commodity” (today’s was “work as freedom”) so I think I’m ready for the inevitable throwdown.
Someone in my sociology of work class today basically said that Karl Marx was wrong about workers being exploited because workers can enjoy what they do, ergo they aren’t exploited. Also they might not own their labor but they own their reputation which is more valuable.
I think I’m going to write a book that records every weird thing said in this class.
My sociology of work class is starting I can’t wait to fight some nerds with Ideology(TM)
Hoc est nuntius personalis.
Nemo scit quid hoc dicit.
I just thought “what if I learned some really obscure language just so that I could make really personal posts on Tumblr dot com”
And then I remembered I studied Latin for four years and ancient Greek for two so either of those could work.
Q:conservatives say liberals are fascist, liberals say conservatives are fascist, how is this different from socialist critique of liberalism and conservatism as both being fascist? not a gotcha question, I want to learn more
The dichotomy between liberal and conservative comes out of the specific class formation that capitalism created in order to develop itself through the primitive accumulation phase. It involved the creation of social hierarchies based on skin colour and genitals and such that could be used to justify violence on a massive and genocidal scale, securing the consent of some of the populace by allowing them a small part of the booty. This evolved first into a situation in 18th and 19th century Europe where capitalists were united under a liberal/whig party and feudalists were united under a conservative party. Slowly, feudalists themselves were turned into agricultural capitalists through reforms like the end of the corn laws, and the two parties became the two wings of capitalism. Liberals are typically internationalist in character, believing that capitalism should be continually pushed to its greatest bounds, and this means that the state must take over some functions in society to ensure its proper stewardship. They also wish for rationalization, including the removal of old social prejudices to a degree to make capitalism more dynamic. Virtually no nation in history developed through capitalism without strong state discipline of individual firms, without socializing the costs of research and development, and without doing major amounts of economic planning, possibly through proxies like the military-industrial complex or simply straight up like japan’s MITI. Conservatives on the other hand are the group of fearful provincial capitalism. They embody what capitalists hate about democracy, that the state powers used to expand capitalism could also be used to take their property from them. They believe in the lies of capitalism about social hierarchy and fear the loss of the continued violent coercion that keeps property safe. Liberals on the other hand believe that letting black people and homosexuals and such be rich improves capitalism’s standing in the eyes of the poor, helping them to believe that they one day may be rich too. American political discourse tortures any concepts until they became staid, nondescriptive, predictable, simplified and entirely controllable, so these ideas manifest as “big government, small government”. Based on these signifiers, American pundits then proceed to bash each other by noticing that one or the other had parallels in an old and hated enemy, Nazi Germany, the fascists. This group represents the failure of both capitalism and communism, the former to keep the state, the latter to seize the state. They’re closer to conservatives in the sense that they believe in the lies of capitalism about hierarchy and in the direct application of violence to gain their goals, and that they’re typically those provincialists who are excluded from the power halls of capitalism on most days, the petit bourgeoisie, upwardly mobile professionals who resent both the upper and lower classes as parasites. They do tend to discipline firms that don’t follow their policy dictates though. However, under fascists as under liberals and conservatives, property is safeguarded no matter what. Instead, they’re a threat to the internationalist capitalist order because they believe in national capitalism, not international capitalism, and will stop capitalism from expanding in a more totalizing manner. They’re also ideologically motivated to fight communism in the extreme, meaning they can be useful at times. We’ve reached a point where capitalism can set them up and knock them down with relative ease, such as the 1965 Indonesian coup and the 1998 Indonesian revolution, where American and world bank dictates were able to cohere and eliminate governments in a matter of hours (4 in the latter case). Socialists note that it’s only capitalists that use fascism because it’s inherent in capitalism’s crises, and bash the entire system for its creations, where as liberals and conservatives are only looking to score rhetorical points by comparing their opponents to an old hated enemy in form but not substance.
It might be tempting to hope that capitalism will collapse on its own. Unfortunately, the system isn’t going to smash itself. Capitalism in crisis becomes even more ruthless.
They no longer even bother to keep up the pretence of caring about the future. Resource depletion and natural disasters aren’t problems for capitalists— in fact, scarcity makes prices and profits soar, and catastrophes are huge investment opportunities.
The only panic that a capitalist feels when contemplating the melting of the Arctic is that he won’t get to the newly uncovered oil first. They don’t care where they get their energy, as long as they control it all.
The system is dynamic, adaptable, and infinitely ruthless. Capitalism will ultimately destroy itself, but only when it’s destroyed all life on the planet, which is too late to matter.