Petras

Dennis R Redmond dredmond at SPAMoregon.uoregon.edu
Wed Nov 22 19:11:25 MST 2000



On Wed, 22 Nov 2000, Jonathan Lassen wrote:

> There is a good article on China by James Petras entitled, "China in the
> Context of Globalization" at: http://www.chinabulletin.com/e/petras1.txt

Petras scores some points against the neolibs, but his analysis isn't
convincing. For one thing, he writes off Asian capitalism as a complete
failure, despite its impressive historical track record and no less
impressive recovery, and cites the Financial Times 500 survey as evidence
of US dominance -- a survey which relies on market capitalization instead
of revenues, which would show that East Asia and the EU are formidable
competitors indeed. No mention of East Asia's huge trade surpluses
vis-a-vis the US, higher rates of investment, etc. His program is limited
to this:

"Socialist shock policies should be followed by a worker designed
structural adjustment policy (SAP) where property is re-socialized, rural
cooperatives are reintroduced, income and credit is redistributed, illicit
wealth is confiscated and the State withdraws public guarantees from
private sector borrowers."

What kind of rural cooperatives are we talking about? Mao's communes were
a disaster; the land contract system has worked wonders, though. Petras
also seems to think there are tons of Chinese bourgies just waiting to be
expropriated; the reality is state-owned industries dominate in many
areas, e.g. telecoms. No mention here of Taiwan's industrial policies,
long-term lending, eco-industries or rural industrialization strategies.

-- Dennis









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