Fwd: Re: Anarchism / Marxism debates

Jim heartfield jim at heartfield.demon.co.uk
Wed Aug 18 14:42:52 PDT 1999

In message <37BAE632.69CA68E9 at ecst.csuchico.edu>, Michael Perelman <michael at ecst.csuchico.edu> writes
>Actually, Jim H. was correct. Marx's new wants, however, were not SUV's. He
>examples of newspapers, books, .... Not GM foods.

What, you mean that Marx did not anticipate the revolution in genetic science in the 1970s? Shame on him. I'm not sure that Marx would not have appreciated the considerable extension in the range of working class diets, something he wrote very forcefully on.

On Charles' point, I can appreciate that some products are palpably non- use values, such as, for example, nuclear weapons. However, it is a big step from that to say that flashy cars, or stereo-systems, or fashionable clothes, or breast implants, or cigarettes are non-use values. That would be to presume to substitute oneself for the mass of consumers for whom these things are important. You or I might disapprove of one or more of such items, but it is not for us to decide what is and what is not a use value, it is for the user.

It might well be that such things are no longer valued in the socialist Jerusalem, but we are not there yet, and such flawed imperfect creatures are mankind that they do indeed value such things. It is not for us to try mankind before the lofty tribunal of 'really-useful' or not. Such decisions must come from them. -- Jim heartfield

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