Louis Proyect lnp3 at SPAMpanix.com
Fri Jan 28 13:00:00 MST 2000

At 09:18 PM 1/28/00 +0200, you wrote:
>>- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
>>Feature: 'New e-conomy: don't blow IT'
>>Despite all the hype about IT and e-commerce, says Phil Mullan, a shortage
>of investment and ambition risks wasting the real opportunities provided by
>new technology
>>     http://www.informinc.co.uk/LM/LM127/LM127_Mullan.html

>From the article listed above:

"The prosperity of a brave new economic world appears to await us all in
the twenty-first century. There is, however, one teeny problem with this
thesis. The numbers don't yet add up, on either side of the Atlantic. You
can speculate all you like about the unique impact of e-business and the
new rules of a New Economy, but one economic law remains constant
throughout history: if you do not invest the surplus you produced in the
past, it will constrain the growth of surplus in the future. Without such
capital investment productivity growth will remain below the historical
trends, and capitalism will not realise its potential for accumulating
wealth. And where is the level of investment today?"

COMMENT: What is one to make of the phrase "capitalism will not realize its
potential for accumulating wealth"? Although it nice to see LM using an
old-fashioned word like "capitalism" rather than the euphemisms they are
fond of (modern civilization, industry, business, etc.), one has to wonder
what in the world is meant by accumulating wealth? If capitalism does take
the good counsel of LM seriously, and does "invest the surplus", will such
wealth accumulation take place? Why, gosh, there'd be no need for socialist
revolution, would there?

Louis Proyect

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