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View Diary: ACM: "History repeats itself, first as tragedy, second as farce." (98 comments)

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  •  Thanks for placing the discussion in a temporal (4+ / 0-)

    framework where the concept for commons is not an abstract one but one that changes over time and under different economic systems. The change to individual private property for the development of profit through the capitalist system is not the same as the use of the commons for use value for small consumers as a supplement under feudalism.

    I m not familiar with many of the struggles cited here but I do know that the anarchy of small capitalist free-market businessmen is a different dynamic than serfs who were working for a lord and allowed to keep a little for themselves.  

    •  Quite different, but let's be careful (0+ / 0-)

      It is quite, quite different, but we need to be careful with the terminology. Even though patrimony is a regressive and oppressive economic formation, it was a step nearer to a moral economy than capitalism. This was due solely to the ethical restrictions placed on the feudal formations. In England, in particular, there were rather heavy restrictions, and the English system is historically unique.

      In fact, one of the biggest mistakes we can make is to export the serf model onto England or the yoeman model onto Germany or the raubriter onto Scandinavia, because, even though there are the same base/structure forces working, the individual negotiations have resulted in interesting formations. I am personally reluctant to draw a transhistorical lesson from any one iteration, because the particulars of each are so divergent.

      None of this removes the fundamental injustice of the unequal distribution of power or the theft of land. It just means that we have to be careful about being predictive when we see how ingenious people have been and how powerful the variables can be.

      "man, proud man,/ Drest in a little brief authority,. . . Plays such fantastic tricks before high heaven/ As make the angels weep; who, with our spleens,/ Would all themselves laugh mortal." -- Shakespeare, Measure for Measure II ii, 117-23

      by The Geogre on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 06:00:18 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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