Fwd: 'Gas-out' apr 7-9

Jim heartfield jim at heartfield.demon.co.uk
Wed Mar 15 06:14:10 PST 2000

In message < at jhuvms.hcf.jhu.edu>, Wojtek Sokolowski <sokol at jhu.edu> writes
>Jim, that is waaaay too deep for me, so let me make sure that I understand:
>In my original posting in this thread i said that capitalism promotes
>wasteful consumption to keep assorted capitalists in business, and cited
>automobile transportation as a textbook example of such wastefulness (the
>textbook being Baran & Sweezy's classic).

Well, maybe I did stray a bit from the original point.

>You are saying that it ain't so, and capitalism, and auto industry in
>particular, are not wasteful, right? Did I miss anything or you really
>want to sell me a ford explorer as the last word in capitalis efficiency.

No. Didn't say that, didn't mean that.

My point was only that the method that isolates one fraction of capital as pathological argues for the reform of capitalism, not for its end.

Pointedly, the 'New Economy' discussion puts stress on services over manufacturing, and tends to vilify the 'smokestack' industries, and the auto industry as the bad, polluting industries. What started as a case against capitalism becomes a case instead against this specific kind of capitalist, but for the reform and defence of the system as a whole.

Isolating the 'unacceptable face of capitalism' (to quote Tory prime minister Edward Heath) has proven to be a way of defending the system. -- Jim heartfield

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