[Marxism] Thought on the present crisis of Capitalism

Dan d.koechlin at wanadoo.fr
Tue Aug 23 08:37:38 MDT 2011

If Capitalism is crumbling, then it is because of the inherent
contradictions in that mode of production.

Dialectically speaking, in the present historical form of Capitalism, we
are estranged from ourselves, estranged from others and estranged from

Alienated from ourselves because we are forced to act as though we were
commodities, bought and sold to further the enrichment of our masters.
Alienated from each other because the production process is made up of
many competitive units who have no idea what their labour is worth and
only meet together in the process of buying and selling. Alienated from
Nature because labour has become a commodity and not a means to satisfy
human needs.

This fundamentally divisive nature of Capitalism can only lead to crisis
as the productive capacities increase and become divorced from the real
needs of human emancipation.

So the struggle against present-day, existing Capitalism takes the form

a) a yearning for democratic self-management and a say for all
individuals in public affairs. This demand for direct democracy is the
striving to overcome the estrangement of self with others. A say in the
management of public affairs was only the prerogative of free men in
Athenian society, but nowdays it must encompass ALL.

b) a yearning for individually and collectively (and bridging the gap
between the two) managing the means of production. The Capitalist
division within the process of production must be overcome through
social ownership. 

These demands are those of the productive class, although they are not
precisely formulated as yet. As Capitalism, the alienation brought about
by the transformation of labour into a commodity, sinks deeper into
crisis, the necessity for a holistic, Fruhromantik, reconciliation of
producers becomes more evident (although the mental categories available
make it very difficult to express). 

Politically, unions are the first instruments that the working class can
use to express their frustration at being divided during production, and
develop their consciousness of belonging to a class. Unions are the
natural building blocks of a post-Capistalist society. Political
parties, which rely on directing production from above, cannot fulfill
the role of self-emancipation and self-managgement of the working class.

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