Foot and Mouth Genesis- An Eco-Marxist Explanation

Louis Proyect lnp3 at
Sun Mar 25 16:23:57 MST 2001

>Good enough. But I'm not convinced Marx and Engels would be adamant
>about organic methods if they were around today. Alot has changed since
>1848. The references to the Manifesto you seem fond of are extremely
>vague at best, but taken out of context misrepresent M & E, who were
>pretty keen on industrial efficiency and productivity, having the
>potential of creating equality and liberating humanity from hardship etc.

Of course they would be adamant. They were materialists. Materialism is the
only sensible approach to the ecological crisis since it ties together
every element into a whole. Marx and Engels would take one look at
foot-and-mouth outbreaks, mad cow disease, genetically modified foods,
e-coli in fast food, breast cancer epidemics downstream from heavy
pesticide usage, desertification in the American Southwest and say, "We
told you so."

>BTW, I've read Marx's Ecology by John Bellamy Foster and was quite
>impressed by it. But the whole thing is premised on social revolution,
>which Foster leaves out. Without that it's just more reformist bourgeois
>green crap.
>Brian James

Actually, the problem with John's book is not that it leaves out social
revolution but a materialist analysis of the ecological crisis of our
epoch. It is nice that he has pointed out the significance of Marx doing a
dissertation on Democritus, but we need to look more at the interaction
between global warming, weather disruption, famines, etc. The other big gun
in the Green-Red world is Paul Burkett, who wrote a book that went over
every single paragraph in Marx that supported ecology. Well, okay, that's
needed. But more than that we need a Marxist collective that is doing the
same sort of thing as the Worldwatch Institute. It is depressing that most
Marxists are either hostile to ecology or seem content to write books akin
to the sort of Talmudic studies I ran away from 43 years ago.

Louis Proyect
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