[lbo-talk] [SocialistProject] Nationalizing finance

Marv Gandall marvgand2 at gmail.com
Sun Oct 7 08:13:24 PDT 2018

Hi Sam,

I agree with your criticism of populism, originating in the anti-bank rather than anti-capitalist hostility of heavily indebted rural and urban small propertyholders. The Guardian article does seem to fit within the framework of left populism. It was me, rather than the writer, who pointed to it as further evidence of the need to nationalize the industry, I don’t have a settled opinion on financialization and the other major debate within contemporary Marxism about the tendency of the rate of profit to fall and have been following each with interest.

> On Oct 6, 2018, at 7:42 PM, Sam Gindin sam.gindin at gmail.com [SocialistProject] <SocialistProject at yahoogroups.ca> wrote:
> Hi Marv,
> I favour nationalizing the banks because I see it as a step towards
> weakening the capitalist class and moving towards socialism. But just
> because someone is critical of the banks does not mean they are with
> us. There is a populist critique of the banks that has merit on many
> levels but ultimately sees them as bad for industry - i.e. bad for
> capitalism - and so essentially implies a potential alliance with
> industry to take the banks on. The enemy is the banks, not capitalism.
> Moreover, as the second article says, the first one doesn't actually
> seriously call for nationalizing them, only regulating them.
> Roberts is more serious and speaks to the limits of regulating the
> banks. But this is also true of regulating industry while leaving
> their power intact. In fact, Roberts, unlike others, doesn't argue to
> nationalize the banks alone but to nationalize the overall commanding
> heights of the economy.
> My problem with Roberts - whom I consider a serious Marxist and
> political commentator - is that his Marxism tends to likewise get
> populist when he talks of finance, seeing it only as speculative,
> scandal-ridden, and antagonistic to 'real' capitalist development.
> But, as Leo and i argue in 'The Making of Global Capitalism', finance
> is in fact fundamental to capitalism re facilitating globalization
> across differing exchange rates; economic restructuring within and
> across corporations and sectors; imposing discipline on workers,
> states AND non-financial capital; etc. To write finance off as
> counter-productive to capital(ism) underestimates the power of finance
> and its relationship to industry and mis-states the tasks we face.
> On 10/6/18, Marv Gandall marvgand2 at gmail.com [SocialistProject]
> <SocialistProject at yahoogroups.ca> wrote:
> > From today’s Guardian on why we need to nationalize the banking system.
> >
> > https://www.theguardian.com/news/2018/oct/05/the-finance-curse-how-the-outsized-power-of-the-city-of-london-makes-britain-poorer
> >
> > And a corresponding link to another piece today by British Marxist economist
> > Michael Roberts on why we need to bring the financial sector under public
> > ownership and control:
> >
> > https://thenextrecession.wordpress.com/2018/10/06/regulation-does-not-work/
> --
> sam gindin
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> Posted by: Sam Gindin <sam.gindin at gmail.com>
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