[Marxism] Doug Henwood, Anwar Shaikh, and financial crisis

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Fri Dec 5 15:11:24 MST 2008

My first inclination was to approach last night’s talks by Doug Henwood 
and Anwar Shaikh as a kind of debate between a Marxist bull and bear. 
But after Doug began to speak, I was reminded of how serious the 
situation was. In just about every downturn in the American economy 
since the early 1990s, Doug has quite rightly identified them as 
temporary dislocations. With recent events, however, there was little to 
distinguish him from Anwar Shaikh, a New School economist who has 
virtually made the falling rate of profit and similarly gloomy topics 
his own.

Referring to his studies of Wall Street past busts, Doug likened the 
capitalist economy to the Timex wristwatch advertising slogan of the 
1960s-”It takes a licking and keeps on ticking”-that was typically 
spoken after watching a Timex working just fine after being sat upon by 
an elephant. In the world of capitalist economics, the 1987 stock market 
crash was one such elephant. After a huge drop, the market picked itself 
up, dusted itself off, and began to scale new heights.


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