[Marxism] Re.: Marx was right?

Ken Ranney kranney at rogers.com
Sat Feb 14 16:54:10 MST 2004

Hello Mark,
Sorry to be so long getting back to you.

At 03:31 PM 2/7/2004 -0500, Mark Lause wrote:
>How well did this Calvinist idea of "collective responsibility for the
>moral conduct of their members" actually work?  I mean, did these moral
>sanctions to much about the most insane extension of market imperatives
>against human rights--like with regard to slavery, chattel and wages.
>It seems to me that the social sciences in general tinker toy their way
>through all sorts of models and connections that have no contextual
>association to the real world.  Theory that isn't rooted in those lived
>realities has no value.

To remind us, Tawney's quotation:
"In the sixteenth century, whatever the political conditions, the claim of 
the Calvinist Churches is everywhere to exercise a collective 
responsibility for the moral conduct of their members in all the relations 
of life, and to do so, not least, in the sphere of economic transactions, 
which offer peculiarly insidious temptations to lapse into immorality."

I do not think that "collective responsibility for the moral conduct of 
their members" worked very well, for Calvin has been credited with giving 
'aid and comfort' to the emerging capitalism of his day.  Like many other 
good intentions, it fell by the wayside.
Best wishes,
Ken Ranney

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