globalizatio of capital
foucault at eden.rutgers.edu
Tue Apr 25 03:56:38 MDT 1995
In response to Mr. Meisenhelder,
While I don't think the growth of international capital obverts the
preeminince of the state, it does show that ownership is a concept which
transcends other political constructs. The lesson for Marxists is that
ownership is fundamental in social orders, and efforts to obviate it through
government are doomed. To the extent that ownership is problematic, it must
be attacked under it's own terms.
This implies a need for a strong syndicalist component in the
revolution, since syndicalism recognizes the pre-eminence of industrial
ownership in the same way that international capital does. Furthermore,
international socialism has logically to justify itself on the same grounds
as international capitalism.
Attacking international capital on the basis of imperialism is
problematic. How would American socialists attack anyone on that basis ?
Ownership is the political coin of economy, and it is universal tender. Our
problem is not only to redistribute ownership, but to do it on a universally
Just as proprietorship challenged feudal domain, and the corporation
replaced proprietorship, socialism must replace the corporation with a
universally applicable model. The industrial union is the beginning of such
a model, and it must take the valuable aspects of the corporation into it.
It seems to me that Marxists too often react to international
capitalism as the Evil Empire which separate bands of revolutionaries must
fight. We must recognize that international capital has been found prefectly
acceptable by nation after nation. This is because international capitalism
is not an empire, but a method of creating empires. Socialism has to create
methods that are as universally useful to the proletariat as capitalism is to
the world bourgeoisie.
How can we attack, for example, the World Bank and IMF themselves
when they are units conceived to extend the credit derived from the wealth of
the first world, to the rest of the world. Certainly any international
socialist would conceive of the same thing. The problem is what can be
bought with that credit, and the terms of the contract, not the bank or the
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