Forwarded from Nestor (Huato)

Louis Proyect lnp3 at
Fri Jul 4 12:26:44 MDT 2003

Been watching Julio H.´s new "discoveries" in silence, but this is almost
too much:

"When two different modes of production interact, and one of them is in the
business of shaping the world to 'its image and likeness,' then the
difference is going to necessarily mutate into conflict and antagonism.
That conflict may not arise immediately, but it will arise."

That´s a square-cornered scheme, which does not allow for capitalism shaping
the world to its image and likeness by subduing different modes of
production, keeping their "useful" traits alive and resignifying them within
the logics of surplus value exchange. This cornerstone concept by Julio was
already old for Marx and Engels themselves when they begun to study the
Irish question.

Afro American slaves in the South were not proletarians, of course. They
were slaves, they did not own their own work force and could not rent it to
a capitalist in exchange for money. But the particularity of this kind of
slavery, as compared to Ancient slavery, was that it was embedded deep not
into the South but in the Lancashire textile mills, in the general circuit
for the realization of capital the world over. It did not "conflict" with
British capitalism. It _came to_ conflict, eventually, with American
capitalism, and thus you had a civil war ("You see, you see, says Huato
here, he is conceding my point!").

But this civil war (please read Marx) was in the end a war between a
national-popular front led by the American bourgeoisie and the British
bourgeoisie, not between American slaveowners and British capitalism. Much
to the contrary, British bourgeois were FOR American slaveowners, and
American bourgeois turned against them ONLY WHEN IT PROVED UNTENABLE to
develop a self-centered capitalist economy in USA while keeping the
propertied classes of the South free from attacks on their long seated
property rights. It is seldom remembered that the Southern slaveowners were
expropriated of a good deal of their capital, in the same way that the
French aristocrats were expropriated in 1789 and onwards.

Had the British won the war through the Southern slaveowners, the seamless
integration between slavery and industrial manufacture would have lived much
longer than it did. "Shaping the world to ´its image and likeness´" does not
mean, for capitalism, to nurture and spawn new fully developed capitalist
countries, a move that can only be retarded by the natural backwardness of
the colored peoples. It simply means that the world must be turned into the
arena for the realization of capital, regardless of the dominant productive
relation, while it is ensured that a thick enough layer of the human species
is able to act as the active demand of goods (that is, the -in this sense-
privileged classes of the First World).

Oh, I don´t know what do I write these things for. Huato will not accept
them, and others already know them. Last time. I promise. Last time. Bye.

Louis Proyect, Marxism mailing list:

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