Fresh Light :: Giovanna Borradori's Philosophy in a Time of Terror: Dialogues with Jürgen Habermas and Jacques Derrida (excerpt). Habermas' caesura reminds me of Badiou's Knot since poetry has masculine & feminie cæsuras. k-punk's : The full confidence in the 'reality' of our free individuality is precisely the ideological feint which allows us to act as if commodities are autonomous. The critique of capitalism therefore entails a ruthless demolition of commodity-theology and its support in the social fetish of the 'free individual'. discussion here made me check greek for jesus & the moneychangers in Matthew 21:12, Mark 11:15 & John 2:15. seems action directed against the tables (trapeza; contracted from tessares + pezei = four-foot).
Habermas also says, Only in retrospect will we be able to understand if the symbolically suffused collapse of the capitalistic citadels in lower Manhattan implies a break of that type or if this catastrophe merely confirms, in an inhuman and dramatic way, a long known vulnerability of our complex civilization. Matthew & Mark: overthrew the tables of the moneychangers; John poured out the changers' money, and overthrew the tables. for "overthrow" M&M use katastrepho (katastrefw); John doing something interesting with anastrepho (anastrefw) &tc — both forms use obsolete Qoppa.
northanger - etalia link is a lot more rational than most of the marxist ranting I've heard recently, but I'm not in the mood to wade into this swamp now. Marxism has rigorously demolished several times over - anyone interested should know that. I'll rehearse a few of the most elegant refutations in June. If you're impatient read:
• Boehm Bawerk (deals with Scruggs' 'lump of capital' issue. Utterly devastating refounding of capital theory, based on peerless understanding of Marx (well, perhaps equalled by Schumpeter)) [The Positive Theory of Capital]
• Karl Wittfogel (shows why soci*lism is essentially regressive and despotic) [The Hydraulic Civilization :: A hydraulic empire, also known as a hydraulic despotism or water monopoly empire, arises through the need for flood control and irrigation, which requires central coordination and a specialized bureaucracy]
• Deleuze/Guattari (highly obscure, but 'surplus value of code' disintegrates labour theory of value and thus guts the entire Marxian project)
• Schumpeter (His Capitalism, Socialism, and Democracy is a masterpiece of sensitive yet relentless critique, if anything too generous though)
• Braudel (bizarro French vision of capital (see also D&G above) but still rips Karl a new one)
For neatest arithmetical argument, google 'transformation problem' - it's an absolute knock-down of the entire Marxian edifice, extremely clear cut, and best still - Marx knew it himself (hence Capital peters out into sad embers, an uncompletable abortion of a book - but unfortunately it still suffices for arts students in search of an updated European monotheism).
A few of the big issues Marxism is structurally incapable of dealing with coherently:
- Economic incentives. (Every 'Marxist' regime ends up re-introducing capitalist mechanisms at some point, since the only authentically soci*list option is moral exhortation, backed inevitably with terror)
- Saving. Special case of #1. Since returns on capital are defined as exploitation, why the hell would anybody save? At gunpoint of course (or State-capitalism, well duh)
- Intellectual property. Defined as a form of crooked practice by Karl. Again, special case of #1, any economic incentive to innovation strangled at birth.
- Entropy dissipation. How to clear the crap out of any social system, given that competition is verboten? Better reach for those guns again, and trust cynical bureucrats to aim them at the right people.
- Cultural difference. Karl's (only) line: 'Imperialize the brutes' then direct them onto the neo-Christian eschatology conveyor-belt - straight to soci*lism.
- Equity markets, corporate governance and the agency problem. All too complicated - let's just imagine plutocrat manager-owners smoking big cigars.
- The entrepreneurial function. See #6 above or wibble on about primitive accumulation.
- Financial markets. Typical monotheistic allergy to 'usury' and total blindness as regards even the basic arithmetical characteristics of capital markets. Given the master work is called 'Capital' the unbelievable poverty of analysis in this respect is simply mind-bending.
- Artificial intelligence. Robots pre-defined as part of the capital stock, producing no value but merely conditions for utilization of (human) variable capital. Thus AI impossible in principle.
[me of course] | 03.20.06 - 3:11 pm | #