[Marxism] Voting with feet, not commendable in Argentina Re: China's high speed rail plans,

S. Artesian sartesian at earthlink.net
Fri Sep 4 08:59:55 MDT 2009


Even if what you describe regarding Argentina were accurate, which it is 
not, that would be tangential to the truly critical issue.

And what is that issue?  Let's review, according to LW and Nestor, the CCP 
is not bowing down to capitalism, it is using capitalism to build 
socialism;it is using capitalism to make the Chinese nation stronger; in 
making the Chinese nation stronger, it, the embrace of capitalism is making 
theproletariat stronger.

Transposing this all to neat and abstract formula to the actual course of 
development in China, LW's argument means, becomes:  Without the original 
establishment of the special enterprise zone, without the removal of 
protections against the abuse and exploitation of the migrant workers, 
indeed without the limbo status of migrant, female, workers, without the 
explicit cheap labor policy, without reductions on taxes, levies, 
obligations afforded the FDI-- without all that there would have been no 
export driven growth or "development" of China's economy.  With no export 
driven growth, there would have been no export earnings available to the CCP 
leadership of the state, without those export earnings, there would have 
been no "stimulus" money that could be turned to developing the domestic 
market, building the infrastructure, bringing the joy of HSR to China.

Of course, the fact that export earnings are not being used as the stimulus 
is a mere technicality that we can ignore temporarily.

So....?  So you don't get one without the other.  You don't get the heaven 
of "nation-building" without first, according to our glorious 
nation-builders, the hell of intense exploitation.  [All hail Milton 
Friedman.  No wonder the CCP invited him to China].

So...?  So the real question isn't if you "vote" or demand "more 
development" when sitting in your seat in the bourgeoisie's parliament, or 
the party's bureaucratic development commission.  The real question is do 
you vote, endorse, support, in fact subsidize, the intense exploitation that 
makes the supposed industrial garden of eden possible?  The real question is 
what class does the development, and it's always a class doing the 
"developing" on that class' terms.

Not only do you not get one without the other, so-called development without 
brutal exploitation with capitalism or the adaptation of capitalism, but 
even during this so-called development, even during the patriotic, and 
noble, and stirring nation building of constructing "public" utilities, 
railroads, dams, factories  within a non-socialist, 1st,2nd, or 3rd world 
county, that very same intense exploitation is carried on by those 
developers, those nation builders, those patriots.  You think not?   Look at 
the accident rates on big construction projects in these countries.  The 
exploitation and the "development" are part of the whole, and the whole is 
the reproduction of capital, of profit.

So....?  So returning to our issues of dams and railroads... we not only do 
not support the construction of dams and railroads, by the bourgeoisie, or 
by their state, we often times oppose that construction by the bourgeoisie; 
and if we don't oppose the construction itself, we always oppose the terms 
of that construction, the conditions of labor in that construction.

You want to support a transcontinental railroad hookup in the US after the 
Civil War because that would be "developmental?"  Do you support the 
transfer of public lands to the railroad companies--private in this case, 
but they could be nationalized, makes no difference?  Do we then support the 
dispossession of the indigenous peoples from their lands because we are 
"nation-building."   Do we then tolerate the brutal importation, 
exploitation, and even impressment of labor from other areas of the globe 
because we are "developing?"  Of course not.  But you could not separate 
those things from development under the capitalism of the 19th century.  And 
similarly, you cannot separate similar, parallel, abuses from the 
"nation-building," "development"  that embraces the substance of 20th and 
21st century capitalism.

You want to support the construction of dams under the New Deal?  Do you 
think that construction of dams was separate and apart from the devastation 
of small scale farmers, the unemployment of urban workers creating a 
dispossessed and desparate army of the unemployed?

You want to support the construction of dams and railroads in Brazil? Do you 
think that construction takes place without the dispossession of small, 
subsistence producers in rural areas, the uprooting and dispossession of the 
poor in both rural and urban areas?

Let me give you an example that might help clarify the problem and the 
difficulties.  Lets look at the US Army Corps of Engineers.  The CoE is part 
of the Army's military command.  It is responsible for the construction and 
maintenace of the facilities the US Army and Air Force require to train, 
deploy, support, and perform missions in fulfilling the policies and 
directive of the US.  The CoE is also responsible for the maintenace, 
development, improvement of all the nation's waterways.  In the 20th 
century, the Congress made it responsible for flood control along the 
country's waterways.    OK, enough background.  Do you vote yes on the US 
Army command's appropriation request that includes the money for the CoE's 
"benign"  "developmental" infrastructure work?  I don't know about you, but 
I vote no.

I know you would never support such acts of dispossession and exploitation, 
but again within the framework of developing a capitalism, without the 
expropriation of the bourgeoisie, such development cannot be separated from 
dispossession and exploitation.

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "nada" <dwaltersMIA at gmail.com>
To: "David Schanoes" <sartesian at earthlink.net>
Sent: Thursday, September 03, 2009 10:10 PM
Subject: Re: [Marxism] Voting with feet, not commendable in Argentina Re:
China's high speed rail plans,

> Well, I don't agree with S. Artesian. Of course we take positions on
> develop issues. If I were a union activist in China, in the rail unions,
> I'd be *demanding* more development. More money for maintenance of way,
> for better and faster trains, for more input into managing the still
> state-owned rail roads and to fight against any privatization efforts.

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