[Marxism] NYRB review of Naomi Klein

Andrew Pollack acpollack2 at gmail.com
Fri Nov 21 07:18:37 MST 2014


Ted Glick makes an argument very similar to Shane's here:
http://ecowatch.com/2014/11/17/naomi-klein-this-changes-every-thing/

It's certainly true, as Shane and Ted say, that the odds on making a
socialist revolution in time to save the planet and its species are
frighteningly small.

But that doesn't mean pushing only those demands which supposedly make
continuing pollution profitable. It means building a global movement for
socialism which alone -- even short of revolution -- has the power to force
substantial cuts in emissions. And which in consequence means a movement
giving millions of workers the awareness that they have to go all the way
because they see capital and its NGO allies dragging their feet.

Given the current weakness of movements for socialism, especially in the
biggest polluting countries (US and China), we need to think strategically
about demands which build those movements, and argue for them to take up
transitional climate demands.

What's more, a workers' movement fighting for confiscatory carbon taxes is
more likely to scare the ruling class into substantial cuts in emissions
far more than a movement which starts with an "acceptable" demand which
lowers profits just enough to nudge the bosses to shift their investments
from "dirty" to "clean" industries.

On Fri, Nov 21, 2014 at 8:51 AM, Shane Mage via Marxism <
marxism at lists.csbs.utah.edu> wrote:

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> On Nov 20, 2014, at 11:30 PM, Joseph Green via Marxism wrote:
>
>>  Klein prettifies the carbon tax, and does not recognize it as
>> a market measure, no better than the rest of them;
>>
>
> This is the purest ultraleft idiocy. As I have pointed out--and as Green
> absurdly ignores--the capitalism system is not about to be overthrown by a
> proletarian revolution, not in less time than we have before the human
> environment is irrevocably destroyed. Our struggle therefore absolutely
> must center on demands for effective measures operative within the logic of
> the capitalist system.  Effective carbon taxation is not merely
> "better"--it is the ONLY way to make the intensification of pollution so
> UNPROFITABLE that the capitalist market totally abandons it and is forced,
> by its own "logic," to recognize and act on the real, and ever-increasing,
> profitability of investment in the whole range of maturing
> carbon-eliminating energy technologies.
>
>  Shane Mage
>
> This cosmos did none of gods or men make, but it
> always was and is and shall be: an everlasting fire,
> kindling in measures and going out in measures.
>
> Herakleitos of Ephesos
>
>
>
>
>
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