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View Diary: On the 'Vindication' of Marx *updated (208 comments)

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  •  Wrong (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JosephK74

    Democracy means rule of the "demos," which for Marx were the workers.  Capitalism is not rule by the workers, but rule by capitalists.  Ergo, it is impossible to have democratic capitalism.

    Understanding this is crucial for unwinding the liberal rhetoric on democracy, freedom, and capitalism.

    •  Ah, the old Social Democrats vs. Communists (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      RennieMac, duhban, prishannah, JosephK74

      argument.  How Second Internationale. :)

      (Not to be confused with the First Internationale's collapse due to the split from the anarchists. :))

      •  ? (0+ / 0-)

        Rather than use historical trivia to trivialize the point, why not engage in it?

        How can we have political democracy if there is no economic democracy?  This is not an idea owned by sectarian battles within the left, it's the same argument made by Thomas Jefferson in his Notes on Virginia.

        •  See, the New Deal and remeber its a process not (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          duhban

          an end-state.

          IOW, as I've said eslewhere just today, the New Deal is not social security or 'alphabet' regulations, though those necessarily arise from it.  FDR saw it as a fundementally reformed social compact: were all accepted the right and duty of individuals to act collectively through democratic institutions to manage capitalism so that it served both common and individual (capitalist's) needs.  Most immediately the Great Depression, but also in later years of his life the "four Freedoms'.

          IOW, socialism with an American face.

          (This is why FDR was not weddied to any particular program or policy but was willing to try anything as long as it fit that general model.  No NRA?  Fine, try the alphabet soup of smaller policies/programs than generally accomplished the same things.)

          Jefferson would have ended up in the same place as FDR if he could have envisioned the modern industrial economy without a frontier.

          Having said that tho, 1) from their comments, I expected both commentators to understand the reference, 2) those that didn't, I hoped would go educate themselves on the references, and thus

          3) both would realize the points had been debated for over 150 years and spare us a wast of bandwidth in recapitualation of that debate. :)

          •  Ugh (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            ZhenRen, JosephK74

            No offense, but you clearly don't understand the issues here.  FDR did not establish economic democracy, he attempted to contain the contradictions within the capitalist system so that the system itself would not break down again (e.g. another Depression).

            Economic democracy is a state in which each person has the equal ability to participate in the economy as equals.  Just as political democracy means that each person has the equal ability to participate in politics as equals.  This is impossible within a capitalist system, for it is at its root a system of inequality.  Capitalism doesn't simply produce inequality, its very basis is inequality.  Some own capital while most only own their own body.  The concentration of economic wealth into the hands of the some and the precarity produced for the many makes the declaration of political democracy a sham.  Hence, no political democracy within economic democracy.  No democracy within capital.  Hence the idea proposed by the original poster that Marx opined about "democratic capitalism" is blatantly false.

            This is not a "tired debate" (who the hell still discusses sectarianism within the International??  More importantly, who cares and why bring it up?  I smell a concern troll). Rather, it speaks to issues that are absolutely central to the American experience.  Worse, these types of discussions are only happening on the fringes, and rarely get beyond proposals for reviving some form of roll-back to the 1940s.  Discussing the reasons why the New Deal had a short shelf life (the tendencies I present in the prior paragraph) is of such great importance that it angers me that one would attempt to squash such discussion.

            •  Where did I say 'economic democracy'? That's (0+ / 0-)

              your hobby-horse, not mine.

              I said: "FDR saw it as a fundementally reformed social compact: were all accepted the right and duty of individuals to act collectively through democratic institutions to manage capitalism so that it served both common and individual (capitalist's) needs."

              I find 'economic democracy' is an oxymoron, since economics requires scarcity and scarcity means every individual's economic power by definition can not be equal.  IMO the only way to have 'economic democracy' is to abolish scarcity and thus destroy the 'economy', ala ST: The Next Gen.  IOW, capitalism's "very basis" is not 'inequality', but scarcity.  The former is an artifical construct, the later natural.

              I prefer to fight for something actually attainable at the present time: economic fairness.  IMO, you're hobby-horse ('economic democracy') is an unrealistic waste of time, that not only will never be realized while economy (i.e., significant scarcity) exists, it can only destract from truly constructive efforts.

              And this whole 'social democracy betrays the Revolution', 'New Deal destroyed true change for workers'- or your 'no justice without economic democracy/destroy all capitalist!' is precisely the old debate b/t the social democrats and communists.  IMO your reaction to my saying so says more about you than the merits of the arguments.  Btw, only a moron dismisses history (which is why you 'should care'), since trite as it is it is equally true that how you got here defines where you're going and how to actually change it if so inclined.  As I don't think you're a moron, I can only conclude your coments here were actually nothing more than an ad hominen.  

              But hey, you're entitled to your opinions and I to mine and  that's what makes the world go round. :)

              •  So... (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Vespertine, JosephK74

                There is only one way for a society to respond to scarcity, and that is through unequal distribution of property, thus pitting the propertarians against those employed by them? If one is born without property in a world in which all property is already owned, how does one get some? Does such a person simply suffer her fate because of the notion of scarcity? Or find a way to deprive another of property so that she can have some at the other's expense?

                Or does everyone have an equal right to live, even if his or her talents are not equal?

                There is no real democracy or true liberty as along as there is property.

                Why isn't collective sharing an appropriate response? Does anyone really accomplish anything alone? Everything we do is built upon the work by people before us. How does one calculate what portion is produced by an individual's sole efforts, as if completely separate from aggregate efforts of the whole of society?

                "In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

                by ZhenRen on Sat Apr 13, 2013 at 06:42:50 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  The 1st paragraph is an odd one in a diary discuss (0+ / 0-)

                  ing Marxism.  

                  The right to life is not the same as the right to property or even wealth.  Democrats have been trying to guarantee the former and an opportunity to acquire the later for 80 plus years, while Thugs have been saying that not only should we not try to give opportunity, we shouldn't even care about their lives.  But, since you're at a blog that supports the Democratic party, I figure you know that.

                  Tho the third one is certainly appropo: 'Property is theft!', eh?

                  As for the last the last paragraph, philosophers as varied as Hobbs, Marx and Jesus (yes, that Jesus) have offered various answers.  Myself, I like Shakespeare: "The fault lies not in our stars, but in ourselves"

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