[Marxism] Once again on Empire and imperialism
lnp3 at panix.com
Thu Jul 13 13:56:05 MDT 2006
In the latest issue of the Nation Magazine, Michael Hardt makes a valiant
but ultimately doomed attempt to rescue his Empire thesis from the dustbin
of history. Ultimately, this involves coming to terms with the recent focus
on "imperialism" made ineluctable by the last 4 years of hellish assaults
on Islamic peoples in the third world. Hardt grants that for some gullible
souls, "The Bush doctrine of unilateralism was, in fact, nothing but a new
name for US imperialism." Even though certain bronto-Marxists were never
invited on Charlie Rose's talk show, they did come forward with "a flood of
about the new (or not so new) US imperialism."
I can certainly understand Michael Hardt's frustration. Unlike him and Toni
Negri, these "leftist intellectuals" were content to stick within the
limits of Marxism theory and not try to supplant it with jazzy new
theories. Writing a brand-new theory takes at least 5 years or so, but
writing those oh-so-boring Monthly Review books with the word "imperialism"
in the title is no challenge at all. Contrary to the John Bellamy Fosters
of the world, Hardt insists that "imperialism is no longer an adequate
concept for understanding global power and domination, and clinging to it
can blind us to the new forms of power emerging today."
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