Walker's Sayings

John R. Ernst ernst at pipeline.com
Tue Sep 5 10:13:56 MDT 1995


Tom,

Ok.  I'll bite.   Let's start with the first item on your list.  What are
the "internal laws of development" that if left on their own would have
caused capitalism to be overcome.



On Mon, 4 Sep 1995 Tom Walker <popup at FREENET.VANCOUVER.BC.CA> said:


>1. Left to its own "internal laws of development", capitalism would have
long
>ago succumbed to the contradictions inherent in the processes of
production,
>circulation and accumulation of surplus value.
>
>2. Capitalism has not succumbed, but has undergone successive mutations
that
>have allowed for periods of renewed vitality.
>
>3. These mutations have involved appropriating, to the capitalist process,

>processes and qualities that are not identical to the production,
circulation
>and accumulation of surplus value.
>
>4. The appropriated processes are, by definition, *labour* processes.
>
>5. These non-capitalist labour processes may be termed (following
Habermas)
>political and socio-cultural labour processes.
>
>6. Political and socio-cultural labour processes cannot be explained by
analogy
>with the capitalist "economic" labour process.
>
>7. "Neo" and "post" marxisms have highlighted the political and
socio-cultural
>contradictions of late capitalism but have failed to articulate an
integrated
>theory of the distinctively political and socio-cultural *labour
processes*.
>
>8. Economic, political and socio-cultural labour processes are ideal
types. All
>actual labour takes place under some specific combination of features of
each.
>
>9. Social class can not be extrapolated from the capitalist relations of
>production (ownership and non-ownership of the means of production)
because it
>is *always* mediated by political and socio-cultural relations.
>
>10. Conversely, social class can not be extrapolated from either political
or
>socio-cutural relations because it is always mediated by economic
relations.
>
>11. An integrated theory of labour processes would take into account three

>distinctive forms for organizing decisions about the allocation of
resources:
>markets, hierarchies and networks.
>
>12. Markets, hierarchies and networks each offer unique structures of
>motivation, means of communicating decisions, standards of reciprocity and

>crisis tendencies.
>
>13. As the capitalist labour process successively appropriates features
and
>characteristics of complementary labour processes, its structures of
>motivation, means of communicating decisions, standards of reciprocity and

>crisis tendencies are correspondingly transformed (Habermas, Legitimation

>Crisis).
>
>14. Historically, capitalism has successfully negotiated four epochal
>transformations of the labour process, which have preserved the hegemony
of
>capital.
>
>15. The dilemma for late capitalism remains: how to continue to transform
the
>labour process and preserve the hegemony of capital.
>
>16. As Marcuse wrote in Eros and Civilization: "But the closer the real
>possibility of liberating the individual from the constraints once
justified by
>scarcity and immaturity, the greater the need for maintaining and
streamlining
>these constraints lest the established order of domination dissolve."
>
>Tom Walker
>Vancouver, B.C.
>popup at freenet.vancouver.bc.ca
Regards,

John R. Ernst


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