[Marxism] [Pen-l] Michael Hudson: The game is over

Steve Palmer spalmer999 at yahoo.com
Sun Jun 22 23:29:16 MDT 2008

--- bauerly at yorku.ca wrote:
> Panitch and Gindin have been claiming for years that the US will not decline
> relative to other states if there is a downturn (see NLR Superintending
> Global Capitalism). 
Unfortunately there's not enough time and space here to go through all their

> They also do not see the dollar decline as in anyway threatening
> dollar hegemony (see Gindins response in this video-
> http://www.socialistproject.ca/theory/declinedollar2.html).
This was a few weeks before the Fed had to step in and nationalise Bear Stearns
because of fear of systemic collapse. Half the Fed's resources are now devoted
in one form or another to propping up the credit system. Inflation is running
at record levels, the mass of profits is declining - and would be falling
farther and faster if not propped up by the rest of the world. There are
several years more of deleveraging ahead. Yet P&G discern in this a resurgent
American capital. Marvelous! This is like describing emphysema as a healthy
condition. Hyperbolic, I know, but you get the idea.

> Personally I think they are right.  The other economies are too integrated
> into
> a global capitalism that requires US leadership (see P&G articles in
> Socialist
> Register 2004 and 2005 on US Empire).
Intellectually, it's much more fun to claim to have discovered a shiny brand
new imperialism than to assert more of the the same boring old imperialism,
albeit different in form. However, their 'internationalization of capital'
regularly gets rediscovered every years, with much trumpeting. Before both the
first and second world wars, sections of the bourgeoisie said imperialist war
was quite impossible owing to the intertwining of capitals. There are some very
interesting quotes from the Economist and similar publications reflecting this
buried in fuddy-duddy Lenin's Notebooks on Imperialism.

>  Any downturn will be displaced from the
> US to other countries,
Well, it can try ... Hey, hang on a minute! If it's so strong, how come it has
a downturn at all, and how come it needs to displace a downtown? You can't have
a strong imperialism which also needs to prop itself up. Or is this
mysteriously dialectical?

> and/or onto the US working class.
Well, that's already happened - but, again, if this imperialism is so strong,
how come it needs to?

What we are watching is the steady decline of credit as a mechanism for
displacing the the consequences of the fall in the rate of the profit.
Capitalization, in its recent past form is over, gone, never to return.

>  I also agree with
> S.Artesian that the US capitalists own the US working class. 
Certainly true for the better off sections, mired in economism, which are
trying to save themselves by bargaining away jobs and swallowing cuts in pay.
Yet, as a whole, the US working class has none of the integration mechanisms
used by other imperialisms in the form of social benefits. Other bourgeoisies
have a lot more ammo and much more complacent working classes politically, even
if they may be economically militant.

What of immigrant and minority workers? The US state is conducting a war
against them, under the slogan of immigration control and the drug war. These
are the only sections of the US working class which have confronted the US
state politically in the postwar period. Yet for most of the left, these
sections somehow get counted out of the working class. If the US ruling class
was using troops to round up strikers, there would be some sense of urgency.
It's the Left that the US ruling class owns: the working class is still up for

> With no
> resistance to speak of, both domestically and internationally, there will be
> little in stopping them from pushing through whatever they need to regain
> rates of profit.
This persistent preaching that resistance is futile, that US Capital is all
powerful, that the working class is offering no resistance risks turning into a
self-fulfilling prophecy if it continues.

"I study a lot. That is one of the responsibilities of every revolutionary." Hugo Chavez.


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