[Marxism] Two question

Einde O'Callaghan eindeoc at googlemail.com
Sun Mar 15 08:01:33 MDT 2009

Joonas Laine wrote:
> Jan Májíček wrote:
>> 2)      Do you know about any reflection on M. Kidron's
>> (http://www.marxists.org/archive/kidron/index.htm) theory of the permanent
>> arms economy - especially comparison with the present state?
> Ernest Mandel's 'Late Capitalism' chapter 9 (p. 274-309) deals with 
> Kidron and others' views on permanent arms economy and what Mandel calls 
> late capitalism.
And Kidron does a critique of Mandels economics in general at:


Which starts off with the words: "Mandel’s "Economics" is a Marxist 
failure. It is unsure of the central capitalist dynamic. It evades the 
essentials of the system as it operates today. It is more concerned with 
defending Marx’s categories of analysis than with applying them. In 
consequence, it does little damage to the system intellectually or, by 
derivation, in practice."

So I think it would be fairly safe to say that both of them were rather 
dismissive of each other - although it has to be admitted that Mandel 
did on occasion use the terms "arms economy" and even IIRC "permanent 
arms economy" in his descriptive economic writings.

However Jan (Hi, Jan) asked for a critique relating to the current 
situation. Since Mandel has been dead for well over a decade and Late 
Capitalism was written several decades before his death his critique 
can't really be called contemporary.

I would suggest doing a search for obituaries of Kidron, who died a few 
years ago. Some of the obituaries discuss the contemporary relevance of 
his economic ideas.

Einde O'Callaghan

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