What is perhaps most remarkable in regard to both Socialism and Anarchism is the association of a widespread popular movement with ideals for a better world. The ideals have been elaborated, in the first instance, by solitary writers of books, and yet powerful sections of the wage-earning classes have accepted them as their guide in the practical affairs of the world. In regard to Socialism this is evident; but in regard to Anarchism it is only true with some (...) qualification. Anarchism as such has never been a widespread creed, it is only in the modified form of Syndicalism that it has achieved popularity. Unlike Socialism and Anarchism, Syndicalism is primarily the outcome, not of an idea, but of an organization: the fact of Trade Union organization came first, and the ideas of Syndicalism are those which seemed appropriate to this organization in the opinion of the more advanced French Trade Unions. But the ideas are, in the main, derived from Anarchism, and the men who gained acceptance for them were, for the most part, Anarchists. Thus we may regard Syndicalism as the Anarchism of the market-place as opposed to the Anarchism of isolated individuals which had preserved a precarious life throughout the previous decades. Taking this view, we find in Anarchist-Syndicalism the same combination of ideal and organization as we find in Socialist political parties. It is from this standpoint that our study of these movements will be undertaken. (shrink)
Since 1972, the journal Radical Philosophy has provided a forum for the discussion of radical and critical ideas in philosophy. This anthology reprints some of the best articles to have appeared in the journal during the past five years. It covers topics in social and moral philosophy which are central to current controversies on the left, focusing on theoretical issues raised by socialist, feminist, and environmental movements. The articles engage with contemporary issues in critical terms, and represent the best of (...) recent philosophical work on the left. (shrink)
Socialists believe that equality, community, and economic democracy can only be achieved by a system of joint ownership in the means of production. These property rights do not, as such, pass judgment as to what rights individuals have to their own person. Libertarians believe that individual liberty and autonomy are only coextensive with a set of stringent rights to the person and its powers. These property rights do not, as such, pass judgment as to what rights individuals have to the (...) external world. Bringing libertarianism and socialism together is therefore, in principle, possible. This paper takes this further step, by sketching a constituiton that reconciles individual autonomy with radical equality of condition. To those libertarians drawn to socialist values (such as the pioneers of nineteenth-century anarchism), the paper offers a reconciliation that is arguably more true to these values than left-libertarianism. To those socialists drawn to libertarian values, it offers an alternative to left-libertarianism that avoids the pitfalls of statism. (shrink)
This contribution discusses the philosophical meaning of the Martin Heidegger’s Rectoral address. First of all, Heidegger’s philosophical basic experience is sketched as the background of his Rectoral address; the being-historical concept of “Anfang”. Then, the philosophical question of the Rectoral address is discussed. It is shown, that Die Selbstbehauptung der deutschen Universität is asking for the identity of human being there (Dasein) in connection with the question about dem Eigenen (the Germans) and dem Fremden (the Greeks). This opposition structuralizes the (...) confrontation with the beginning of philosophical thinking in the Rectoral address. When read against the philosophical background sustaining the Rectoral address, words appearing therein such as “Kampf”, “Macht”, “Volk” and “Marsch” have nothing in common with the same words as used by the Nazis. It is shown that the Rectoral address is an extremely ambiguous text, because it claims a transformation of human being there (Dasein). Although Heidegger’s view on National Socialism is distinguished from Nazis ideology, it is clear that he made a mistake about Hitler. This article makes clear how Heidegger later changed his mind and vocabulary, and in what way this kind of mistakes and changes of mind are inherent to philosophical empiricism. (shrink)
In 1933 the philosopher Martin Heidegger declared his allegiance to Hitler. Ever since, scholars have asked to what extent his work is implicated in Nazism. To address this question properly involves neither conflating Nazism and the continuing philosophical project that is Heidegger's legacy, nor absolving Heidegger and, in the process, turning a deaf ear to what he himself called the philosophical motivations for his political engagement. It is important to establish the terms on which Heidegger aligned himself with National (...) class='Hi'>Socialism. On the basis of an untimely but by no means unprecedented understanding of the mission of the German people, the philosopher first joined but then also criticized the movement. An exposition of Heidegger's conception of Volk hence can and must treat its merits and deficiencies as a response to the enduring impasse in contemporary political philosophy of the dilemma between liberalism and authoritarianism. (shrink)
This paper aims to analyze the social structure of the society in Teutonic state (1226-1525), which was distinct from structure of estate societies. The author put hypothesis that Teutonic Knight monopolised in their state political, economical and spiritual power. In the light of this thesis certain trends from history of the state of Teutonic Order are explained.
The book narrates how, called to embody this selfless spirit, medical doctors were trapped in a spiral between cultivation and abolition, leading to the explosion of ideology during the Cultural Revolution.
The concept of 'social brain‘ is a hybrid, located somewhere in between politically motivated philosophical speculation about the mind and its place in the social world, and recently emerged inquiries into cognition, selfhood, development, etc., returning to some of the founding insights of social psychology but embedding them in a neuroscientific framework. In this paper I try to reconstruct a philosophical tradition for the social brain, a ‗Spinozist‘ tradition which locates the brain within the broader network of relations, including social (...) relations. This tradition runs from Spinoza to Lev Vygotsky in the early 20th century, and on to Gilles Deleuze, Toni Negri and Paolo Virno in recent European philosophy, as a new perspective on the brain. The concept of social brain that is articulated in this reconstruction – some early-20th century Soviet neuropsychologists spoke of socialism and the cortex as being ―on the same path‖ – overcomes distinctions between Continental thought and the philosophy of mind, and possibly gives a new metaphysical framework for social cognition. (shrink)
A moral case for socialism is made, eschewing efficiency arguments?as crucial as they are in other contexts. The best feasible models of socialism and capitalism are compared with respect to such fundamental values as well?being, rights, autonomy, equality and justice. It is argued that a feasible democratic socialism is superior in all these dimensions to even the best feasible forms of capitalism.
I explicate and defend a form of liberal socialist nationalism. It is also a nationalism which is cosmopolitan. Explication and explanation are crucially in order here, for it is not unreasonable to believe that 'cosmopolitan nationalism' and 'liberal socialist nationalism' and even 'liberal nationalism' are oxymoronic. Against that I argue that there is a straightforward understanding of these concepts and their relations to each other that does not have inconsistencies or even paradoxes. Liberal socialism properly understood goes well with (...) cosmopolitanism (both moral and institutional), and there are plausible and attractive forms of both liberalism and socialism that go together. Moreover, the only candidate for a nationalism that would survive careful reflective inquiry is a liberal nationalism: a nationalism which is neither ethnic nor civic. It is widely believed, however, that even a liberal nationalism is incompatible with cosmopolitanism. I contend in a series of arguments that in contexts where nationalism is rightly on the agenda the form that it should take is that of a liberal nationalism, and it is further argued that to be viable, nationalism requires cosmopolitanism. (shrink)
Hayek's and Mises's argument for the impossibility of socialist planning is once again popular. Their case against socialism is predicated on an account of the nature of knowledge and social interaction. Hayek refined Mises's original argument by developing a philosophical anthropology which depicts individuals as tacitly knowledgeable rule-followers embedded in a 'spontaneous order' of systems of rules. Giddens, whose social theory is informed by his reading of Wittgenstein, has recently added his sociological support to Hayek's 'epistemological argument' against (...) class='Hi'>socialism. With the aid of an interpretation of Wittgenstein which emphasizes his philosophy of praxis , I attempt to 'deconstruct' Giddens's and Hayek's 'picture' of tacit knowledge and rule-following on which their argument against socialism is predicated. (shrink)
Is economic justice inherently opposed to a competitive market economy? Or are the two natural allies? Theorists of justice and critics and defenders of capitalism have been debating these issues for hundred of years. In my view, we do not yet have a sufficiently clear understanding either of what justice requires or of what the market economy might deliver to reach a definitive resolution of these debates. I took several broad swipes at these issues in essays published decades ago. One (...) of these essays (Arneson 1987) has elicited an intelligent and thoughtful critique by Russell Keat (this journal). I welcome the opportunity to revisit these issues, which still seem to me to be of great significance, even if my own attempts to engage them now appear to shed more heat than light. I find myself thoroughly is disagreement both with the main claims advanced by my 1987 essay and with Keat’s criticisms of them. In the first three sections of this paper I explain what is wrong with the views of my earlier self, and in the final section I explain why I do not find Keat’s critique compelling. I start with a brief rehearsal of my earlier arguments. Readers may consult Keat’s essay for excellent and accurate statements of my 1987 conclusions and the arguments I offered in their support. Arneson 1987 argues that if a market socialist economy of a syndicalist sort is established, if the distribution of resources is continuously adjusted to be fair, and if the market operates efficiently, further intervention in the market to bring it about that people gain more of the benefits of meaningful work would be unjust and unfair.1 The just economy maximizes a function of people’s preference satisfaction that balances two concerns: other things being equal, a greater aggregate degree of satisfaction of the ensemble of people’s preferences (each preference weighted by its importance to the individual who has it) is better, and other things being equal, a more equal degree of satisfaction of the preferences of each person is better.. (shrink)
In Why Not Socialism?, GA Cohen defines socialism as the combined application of two moral principles: the egalitarian principle and the principle of community. The desirability of a social order organized around these two principles is illustrated by the ‘camping trip’ example. After describing the fundamental features of the camping trip scenario at reasonable length, Cohen argues that the desirability of such a social model is nearly self-explanatory, concluding therefore that the most significant challenges to socialism lie (...) in its feasibility. This article argues that the desirability of the camping trip model as an appropriate ideal for society is less obvious than Cohen acknowledges. To argue my point, I shall compare the camping trip with another social practice that is equally small sized and characterized by strong emotional ties among its members, but in which the conditions of what I shall call ‘goal-monism’ and discontinuity in time do not hold, namely, the family. (shrink)
Like Mises before him, Hayek challenges the validity of socialism as a centrally planned economic regime typically characterized by state ownership of all means of production. What is typical of Hayek's challenge is that he holds that this question is fully theoretical in nature and that it has consequently to be raised and decided as a scientific question. Sketching the historical background of the socialist calculation debate of the 1920s and 1930s, I first show how this debate is linked (...) with the Menger-Wieser Zurechnungsproblem, which indeed constitutes the very topic of Hayek’s 1923 Ph. D. dissertation. I recall that the Pareto-Barone approach based on General Equilibrium Theory (GET) has determined the conceptual framework of this controversy. I then go on to explore Hayek's impracticability argument against market socialism and try to show how it is related to, but different from, Mises’s logical impossibility argument. I argue that the contexts of discussion were completely different in both cases: if Mises was criticizing the possibility of rational economic decisions in a moneyless economy, Hayek was debating against the Lange-Dickinson-Lerner model of market socialism where the prices of first order goods were supposedly fixed following a GET simulation of the competetive market process. The core of Hayek’s line of reasoning is shown to be related to a clever analysis of the notion of ‘data’: the data on which a Central Planification Board is suppose to work out a production and distribution schema for the whole economy are simply unavailable to him because this kind of economic knowledge (which Michael Polanyi calls “tacit knowledge”) cannot be accumulated and stored up anywhere in society, as if the global economy could be directed by a super-brain possessing complete knowledge of every particular situation and able to compute a perfect solution to any economic problem whatsoever.. (shrink)
In his book Why Not Socialism? , G.A. Cohen described several kinds of inequality that would be acceptable under socialism, yet nonetheless harmful to community. I describe another kind of inequality with this property, deriving from the legitimate transmission of preferences and values from parents to children. In the same book, Cohen proposes that the designing of a socialist allocation mechanism is a key problem for socialist theory. I maintain this is less of a problem than he believes. (...) Finally, some thoughts on the “law of motion of socialist ethos ” are offered. (shrink)
This essay is an attempt to piece together the elements of G. A. Cohen's thought on the theory of socialism during his long intellectual voyage from Marxism to political philosophy. It begins from his theory of the maldistribution of freedom under capitalism, moves onto his critique of libertarian property rights, to his diagnosis of the “deep inegalitarian” structure of John Rawls' theory and concludes with his rejection of the “cheap” fraternity promulgated by liberal egalitarianism. The paper's exegetical contention is (...) that Cohen's work in political philosophy is best understood in the background of lifelong commitment to a form of democratic, non-market, socialism realizing the values of freedom, equality and community, as he conceived them. The first part of the essay is therefore an attempt to retrieve core socialism-related arguments by chronologically examining the development of Cohen's views, using his books as thematic signposts. The second part brings these arguments together with an eye to reconstructing his vision of socialism. It turns out that Cohen's political philosophy offers a rich conception of objective and subjective freedom, an original understanding of justice as satisfaction of genuine need, and a substantive ideal of fraternity as justificatory community with others. If properly united, these values can suggest a full-bloodied account of the just polity, and give us a glimpse into what it means, for Cohen, to treat people as equals. (shrink)
Making use of capital to develop China’s socialist market economy requires China not only to fully recognize the tendency of capital civilization but also to realize its intrinsic limitations and to seek conditions and a path for overcoming contradictions in the mode of capitalist production. Karl Marx’s theory of capital provides us with a key to understanding and dealing properly with problems of capital. At the same time we should also pay heed to Western research on, experience with, and lessons (...) from capitalist economies developed over the past four centuries summarized in the field of “business ethics”. (shrink)
The study draws attention to the transfer of management theories and practices from traditional capitalist countries such as the USA and UK to post-socialist countries that are currently experiencing radical change as they seek to introduce market reforms. It is highlighted that the efficacy of this transfer of management theories and practices is, in part, dependent upon the extent to which work-related attitudes and values vary between traditional capitalist and former socialist contexts. We highlight that practices such as Human Resource (...) Management (HRM) and Organization Development (OD) are inextricably associated with conceptions surrounding culture and society, as well as to variables such as job satisfaction and organisational commitment. The main aim of this study is to compare various attitudes and values of employees in traditional capitalist countries and post-socialist countries. On the basis of the findings of an attitudinal survey of (N = 5914) workers in 15 countries we conclude that certain aspects of the attitudes and values of workers in post-socialist countries and traditional capitalist countries differ significantly. Specifically, these differences were found in respect of context-related and job-related attitudes, and also in relation to the importance that the respondents attached to the subject of ethics more generally. The implications of the study are discussed particularly in relation to the transfer of management theory and practices between traditional capitalist and post-socialist contexts. (shrink)
Open the Readings on p.217 and look through the table of contents. Part I is an appreciation and critique of Marx. Schumpeter argues that Marx's argument to show that Capitalism will eventually destroy itself is unsound. Nevertheless, Schumpeter himself thinks that Capitalism contains the seeds of its one destruction. Hence Part II: Can Capitalism Survive? The answer he gives is No. But at first, Chapters 5-8, he explains the strengths and virtues of Capitalism. Then he explains why it will eventually (...) be transformed into socialism. Notice Chapter XIII, which is the first of the extracts we will read. (shrink)
This paper examines the epistemological arguments about markets and planning that emerged in a series of unpublished exchanges between Hayek and Neurath. The exchanges reveal problems for standard accounts of both the socialist calculation debates and logical empiricism. They also raise questions concerning the sources of ignorance and uncertainty in modern economies, and the role of market and non-market organisations in the distribution and coordination of limited knowledge, which remain relevant to contemporary debates in economics. Hayek had argued that Neurath's (...) work exemplified the errors of rationalism that underpinned the socialist project. In response Neurath highlighted assumptions about the limits of reason and predictability that the two theorists shared and attempted to turn those assumptions back against Hayek in a defence of the possibility of socialist planning. The paper critically compares Neurath's and Hayek's criticisms of rationalism and considers how far Neurath is successful in his attempt to employ Hayek's assumptions against Hayek himself. (Published Online April 18 2006) Footnotes1 I would like to thank the staff at the Vienna Circle Institute for their assistance in consulting their copy of the Neurath Nachlass. I owe a debt of gratitude to Thomas Uebel and David Archard for their comments on earlier versions of this paper. I would like to acknowledge the support of the Arts and Humanities Research Board and a Manchester University Hallsworth Fellowship in writing this paper. (shrink)
I recently visited the Soviet Union. I was there for only one week, as a tourist: time to get only a very limited and superficial impression of life there. Nevertheless, it was a sobering and thought-provoking experience. For even such a brief visit forces one to confront the problems raised by the evidently unideal character of the Soviet Union and other `actually existing' socialist societies. These are amongst the greatest problems facing socialists in the world today.
What is typical of Hayek's challenge concerning socialism is that he always maintained that this question was for economic theory to decide. Sketching the historical background of what has come to be known as the "socialist calculation debate" (section 1), I try to link this debate with the Menger-Wieser Zurechnungsproblem and show that the Pareto-Barone approach has determined the theoretical form of this economic controversy. I then go on to explore Hayek's 'inapplicability' argument (section 2) and try to show (...) how it is related to Mises' 'logical impossibility’ argument. This is followed by an examination of Hayek's second argument (section 3), which I refer to as 'the evolutionary argument'. I display what is the specific gist of this argument and connect it tightly to the first one. I then discuss certain methodological issues (section 4) pertaining to the allegedly radical difference between Mises' arguments and Hayek's tentative refutation of socialism. Here I challenge the received view that Mises' based his case on the 'impossibility in principle' of socialism, whereas Hayek's own position was to challenge the 'possibility in practice' of a centrally planned economy. This reading (especially by Willem Keizer) of Hayek's contribution to the debate seems to me misguided and unwarranted. I attempt to propose, on the contrary, that both lines of reasoning involve the same kind as arguments since both of them should be interpreted as impossibility theorems. Finally (section 5) I try to give an appropriate and adequate answer to the question raised in the title of this paper. (shrink)
Ever since the collapse of Soviet-bloc socialism, and the associated breakup of the Soviet Union itself, it has been accepted by the vast majority of political economists that Friedrich A. Hayek and his fellow Austrians, notably his mentor, Ludwig von Mises, were the unequivocal victors in the famous “socialist calculation debate” that had raged for a good seven decades. It was over. The anti-socialist, Austrian position had won. Market capitalism was triumphant in both theory and practice. The combination of (...) lack of incentives and inevitably dispersed and asymmetric information had doomed command central planning of economies, especially in an increasingly complicated modern world economy (Rosser and Rosser, 2004, Chap. 3). (shrink)
Until 1917 Lenin and Trotsky believed that an isolated revolutionary Russia would have no chance of survival. However, from 1917 to 1923 Lenin's standpoint on this matter underwent a complete reversal. First he came to the conclusion that socialism could be built in an isolated Russia, although it would remain incomplete in the absence of the world revolution. By 1923 he was abandoning that latter qualification too. The standpoint of Stalin and Bukharin in the debate on socialism in (...) one country of 1925–26 was more orthodox-Leninist than the position taken by Trotsky, who had at first also embraced the notion of incomplete socialism, but subsequently returned to the old concept, abandoned by Lenin, that the restoration of capitalism was inevitable in the absence of the world revolution. (shrink)
Modern socialist economic reforms which center on the establishment of a commodity based economic system, demand a reconsideration of human nature. Marxism and human sociobiology give different answers to questions about human nature, but neither is complete in itself. It seems timely, therefore, to suggest that a combination of biological understanding with a Marxist-based social understanding would produce a more adequate notion of human nature, thereby helping us to resolve a number of problems posed by reforms currently taking place in (...) socialist countries. We might also hope to face new challenges posed in the future. (shrink)
The paper examines the sense in which Gianni Vattimo’s story of a long goodbye of modernity along with an interminable weakening of Being inaugurates a leftist philosophico-political project. The hermeneutics of “weak thought” is criticized for (a) its ambiguous concept of interpretation; (b) its way of integrating proceduralism in post-metaphysical philosophizing; and (c) the unhappy marriage it promotes between nihilism and emancipation. Finally, a philosophico-political version of hermeneutic ontology based on the idea of situated transcendence is suggested as an alternative (...) to Vattimo’s nihilistic socialism. (shrink)
It seems evident that class differences and class struggle continue to exist in socialist societies; that is to say, in societies like the Soviet Union and China, which have undergone socialist revolutions and in which private property in the means of production has been largely abolished. I shall not attempt to prove this proposition here; rather it will form my starting point. For my purpose in this paper is to show how the phenomenon of class in socialist society can be (...) understood and interpreted in Marxist terms; and, in particular, to explain and expound Mao Zedong's attempt to do so. For one of Mao's most striking and important contributions to Marxism was his recognition that `contradictions among the people' continue to exist in socialist society, and his attempt to explain them within the theoretical framework of historical materialism. Marx outlines his account of historical development in the following well-known words: It is not the consciousness of men that determines their being, but on the contrary it is their social being that determines their consciousness. At a certain stage of their development, the material productive forces of society come into conflict with the existing relations of production or - what is merely a legal expression for the same thing - with the property relations within the framework of which they have hitherto operated. From forms of development of the productive forces these relations turn into their fetters. At that point an era of social revolution begins. With the change in the economic foundation the whole immense superstructure is more slowly or more rapidly transformed. (Marx, Preface to A Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy) It has been common to interpret these words as expressing a simple form of economic or even technological determinism which would rule out the very possibility of class divisions continuing to be a fundamental feature of socialist society. For, according to this account, a socialist society, by abolishing the private ownership of the means of production, thereby abolishes the material and economic basis of class differences; and so classes are destined to die out in socialist society 2 as the forces of production are developed. According to this interpretation, which I shall call the `traditional' account, in Marx's account of historical development all the emphasis is placed upon the development of the productive forces.. (shrink)
Democratic Socialism -- The relationship between democracy and socialism is a curious one. Both traditions are rooted philosophically in the concept of equality, but different aspects of equality are emphasized. Democracy appeals to political equality, the right of all individuals to participate in setting the rules to which all will be subject. Socialism emphasizes material equality--not strict equality, but an end to the vast disparities of income and wealth traceable to the inequalities of ownership of means of (...) production. (shrink)
This paper discusses the theory of socialism endorsed by Li Dazhao, China's first Marxist, as an effort to integrate western ideas into the traditional Chinese thinking during the chaotic years of the 1920s. There are two aspects of Li's theory of socialism which, while related, are distinct: (1) a theory about the nature of socialist society, and (2) a theory about how a socialist society can be achieved in China. Li's development of (1) is influenced by his acceptance (...) of the classical Confucian notion of the Great Harmony while his account of (2) draws upon both his acceptance of the Daoist account of historical change and on classic Confucianism. Understanding his theory of socialism thus requires locating it within these two doctrines of classical Chinese philosophy. (shrink)
The paper highlights the dependence of the level of organizational trust on work ethic and aims to show that development of trust in organizations can be␣stimulated by raising the level of work ethic with organizational practices. Based on the framework by Kanungo, R. N. and A. M. Jaeger (1990, ‘Introduction: The Need for Indigenous Management In Developing Countries’, in A. M. Jaeger and R. N. Kanungo (eds.), Management in Developing Countries (Routledge, London), pp. 1–23), historical–cultural analysis of the Lithuanian context (...) is carried out. The country is chosen as an example of a post-socialist context where work ethic and trust in the society tended to be rather low. The authors discuss organizational practices, particularly the ones related to people management, which can facilitate development of work ethic, and thus, trust in organizations operating in a post-socialist context. The importance of a processual approach to the development of organizational trust and the ethical content of organizational practices, which are aimed at developing organizational trust is highlighted. Directions for further research are indicated. (shrink)
Derrida's reading of Heidegger in Of Spirit provides an excellent opportunity to assess the ethical and political value of each of their works. Derrida uncovers a slippage in Heidegger during the 1930s in which Heidegger ?forgot to forget? the dangers of the ?spirit? he had disavowed in Being and Time. This reveals a substantial early investment in the National Socialist project from which Heidegger never adequately recovered. Even in his attempts to distance himself from his Nazi past, Heidegger was still (...) caught up in a metaphysical, though not a racial?biological, gesture and while Heidegger may have written at the end of philosophy, it was an end never come. One cannot stop reading Heidegger on this account. Rather, one is all the more compelled to read him, and after him Derrida. In Derrida's reading of Heidegger, we see the ways in which Heidegger opened up for Derrida an alternative space for the ethical ? in ?The call of Being? before any decision ? in the obligation to the other. However, this ethical possibility of deconstruction is only a space of undecideabiliry and questioning, never a space for political comportment; that is, it is ontological?existential, not ontical?existentiell. In this, while deconstruction opens up a space for ethics, it is never to guide, only to expose. (shrink)
Abstract The significance of the major claims of Joseph Schumpeter's best?known work, Capitalism, Socialism and Democracy, have often been misunderstood by readers unattuned to its ironic mode of presentation. The book reaffirms two themes that were central to Schumpeter's thought from its very beginning, namely the significance of creative and extraordinary individuals in social processes, and the resentment created by the innovations they introduce. The thesis that socialism would replace capitalism, but that it would bring about few of (...) the advantages imagined by socialists and many disadvantages with which they had not reckoned, was an ironic proposition, which Schumpeter put forth in a manner designed to overcome intellectuals? dogmatic resistance to capitalism. (shrink)
Abstract In the 1920s, Austrian?school economists began to argue that in a fully socialized economy, free of competitively generated prices, central planners would have no way to calculate which methods of production would be the most economical. They claimed that this ?economic calculation problem? showed that socialism is ?impossible.? Although many believe that the Austrian position was later vindicated by the collapse of the Soviet bloc, the Austrian school's own methodology disallows such a conclusion. And historical evidence suggests that (...) poor incentives?not lack of economic calculation?were the main source of the economic defects of ?really existing socialism.? (shrink)
Hayek's epistemic arguments against central planning and in defence of market economies have recently been redeployed by some market-socialists against more decentralized models of non-market socialism. This paper considers the cogency of these arguments through an examination of an unpublished exchange in the socialist calculation debates between Hayek and a proponent of non-market associational models of socialism, Otto Neurath. Contrary to the standard view of the debates, Neurath shared many of the assumptions of Hayek's epistemic arguments and similarly (...) criticized technocratic models of planning. The paper outlines Neurath's defence of associational socialism from his early role in the Bavarian revolution through his engagement in the post-war housing movements in Vienna and the unity of science movement. While Neurath's response to Hayek is not entirely successful, his proposals for associational models of socialism point to problems not just in Hayek's criticisms of non-market socialism, but also those of more recent market-socialists. (shrink)
This paper begins by examining Erich Fromm’s “Manifesto and Program” written for the Socialist Party in 1959 or 1960, and addresses a simple question: Why would Fromm speak of something so apparently arcane as “prophetic messianism,” in his socialist program? When he insists that we have forgotten thatsocialism is “rooted in the spiritual tradition which came to us from prophetic messianism, the gospels, humanism, and from the enlightenment philosophers,” is this simply a literary flourish, a concession to liberalism, or religious (...) sentimentality? Part I, written by Nick Braune, answers the question by examining Fromm’ssocialist organizing commitments in the context of the late 1950s. Part II, written by Joan Braune, offers further defense of the term “prophetic messianism,” distinguishes two types of messianism, and suggests that Fromm may be attempting to address a problem in the Frankfurt School. (shrink)
The "Socialist Calculation Debate" is little known outside the economics profession, yet this inter-war debate between liberal and socialist economists on the practical feasibility of socialism has important implications for all contemporary public sector bureaucracies. This article applies the Mises-Hayek critique of central planning that emerged from this debate to the crisis presently facing the British National Health Service. The Mises-Hayek critique suggests that the UK government's plan for a renewal of the National Health Service will fail because of (...) the epistemological pathologies that face any centrally planned system. It is argued that the key lesson of the Socialist Calculation Debate is that market prices and private property rights are essential for the efficient allocation of resources and the attainment of the best possible health outcomes. (shrink)
In standard interpretations of the history of socialism, the cosmological and providential side of nineteenth century socialist thought tends to be ignored. What still today is often considered the core of socialist reasoning was its preoccupation with the claims of producers, its championing of the cause of the working class, its critique of political economy. In the twentieth century, the most characteristic goal of socialist parties - at least until the advent of Tony Blair - has been the socialisation (...) of the means of production. The particular association of socialism with a language of productivism - with work, producers, the character of labour, and a critique of political economy - goes back to the commentaries of the 1830s and 1840s. Adolphe Blanqui, the brother of the famous revolutionary, in his History of Political Economy in Europe published in 1837, described Fourier and Owen as 'utopian economists',1 while Lorenz von Stein in his Der Sozialismus und Kommunismus des heutigen Frankreichs, first published in 1842, defined socialism as a theory which made work the sole basis of.. (shrink)
It is clear enough why both major propaganda systems insist upon this fantasy. Since its origins, the Soviet State has attempted to harness the energies of its own population and oppressed people elsewhere in the service of the men who took advantage of the popular ferment in Russia in 1917 to seize State power. One major ideological weapon employed to this end has been the claim that the State managers are leading their own society and the world towards the socialist (...) ideal; an impossibility, as any socialist -- surely any serious Marxist -- should have understood at once (many did), and a lie of mammoth proportions as history has revealed since the earliest days of the Bolshevik regime. The taskmasters have attempted to gain legitimacy and support by exploiting the aura of socialist ideals and the respect that is rightly accorded them, to conceal their own ritual practice as they destroyed every vestige of socialism. (shrink)
When purged of its connection to libertarian forms of capitalism, Ayn Rand’s ethical “egoism” is not an implausible ethical theory. I argue (1) that Rand in fact fails to show the connection between her ethics and the political economy she has championed and (2) that in fact her ethics is at least as compatible with socialism as with capitalism.
Insofar as John Stuart Mill can be accurately described as a socialist, his is a socialism that a classical liberal ought to be able to live with, if not to love. Mill's view is that capitalist economies should at some point undergo a `spontaneous' and incremental process of socialization, involving the formation of worker-controlled `socialistic' enterprises through either the transformation of `capitalistic' enterprises or creation de novo. This process would entail few violations of core libertarian principles. It would proceed (...) by way of a series of voluntary transactions. Capitalists' property rights would be respected throughout. The process would take place within a national system of laws that permits private ownership of productive property and competition, and would not result in that system's overthrow. And, if we accept some basic tenets of Mill's social philosophy, the outcome at which we should expect the process to arrive is a `patchwork' economy in which capitalistic and socialistic enterprises exist side by side. Key Words: Ludwig von Mises John Stuart Mill socialism capitalism worker control. (shrink)
This essay focuses on one aspect of the social thought of Martin Luther King, Jr.: his social ethics. Specifically, it poses the question whether, in what sense, and from what time it is correct to consider King a democratic socialist. The essay argues that King was in fact a democratic socialist and, contrary to the implications of some recent interpreters who have focused on transformation and radicalization in King's thought, that King's democratic socialism was rooted in his formative (...) experience of the black religious tradition and was manifested from his student days at Crozer Theological Seminary forward. The change that may be discerned in King's later years was only a refinement, not a transformation, of his basic orientation. (shrink)
Can market socialism realize the socialist vision of the good society by ending exploitation and alienation, substantially reducing inequalities of wealth and income, ensuring full employment, and correcting other market irrationalities? A comparative analysis of the organizational forms of capitalism (notably the small owner?operated firm and the large corporation) and market socialism (the self?managed cooperative that rents its capital from the state) reveals the relative efficiencies of capitalism in reducing transaction costs, in turn reducing the opportunities for exploitation. (...) By contrast, the transaction cost inefficiencies of the organizations of market socialism permit and encourage forms of exploitation that are precluded or discouraged under capitalism. (shrink)
Anti-capitalist thinkers in the West have long argued that the expansion of markets creates new wants faster than it can satisfy them, and that consumption under capitalism is a form of addictive behavior. Recently, however, the relentless expansion of desire has come to be seen as a strength rather than a weakness of capitalist regimes. To understand this change socialists must consider whether there is a point to consumer spending that goes beyond satisfaction with what one gets. Freud's notion of (...) instinctual ambivalence illuminates the ways in which spending itself is a fusion of the desires to lose and to gain. This helps to explain how the socialist distinction between satisfying and addictive consumption misses the mark. Broadening this insight, we can see that Western thought about justice, originating in Judeo-Christian theology, conceals a fundamental ambivalence about both domination and gain by suggesting that inequality (beginning with that between God and man) is justified when the dominating party loses and the gainer submits. Ironically, however, the new post-utilitarian rationale for capitalism undermines this putative justification of social inequality in consumer-oriented capitalist societies by bringing our internal ambivalence about gain and dominance to the surface. This development creates an opportunity for a new beginning in Marxian social theory. The final sections of the essay suggest that social theory has been trapped in a debate over whether predators (and their human counterparts) kill in order to eat or eat in order to kill (Marx vs. Nietzsche). To break this trap we must shift the basis of social criticism from the metaphor of predation to the metaphor of parasitism. This changes the focus of critical analysis from unmasking the predator in every situation to identifying in every social structure the mechanisms of incorporation, mutual subversion, asymmetrical exchange, and surplus-creation (as distinct from equilibrium). If neither the desire for gain nor the desire for dominance are self-explanatory, then the Marxian critique of Nietzsche and the Nietzschean critique of Marxism both have valid points. The essay concludes with reflections about the importance of addressing the post-utilitarian rationale of capitalism with the same depth and comprehensiveness that we find in Marx's critique of its utilitarian rationale. (shrink)
recruits or the area of its influence, which has been attained by Modern Socialism, and at the same time been so little understood and so misunderstood, not only by the hostile and the indifferent, but by the friendly, and even by the great mass of its adherents themselves. This unfortunate and highly dangerous state of things is due partly to the fact that the human relationships which this movement Â– if anything so chaotic can be called a movement Â– (...) aims to transform, involve no special class or classes, but literally all mankind; partly to the fact that these relationships are infinitely more varied and complex in their nature than those with which any special reform has ever been called upon to deal; and partly to the fact that the great moulding forces of society, the channels of information and enlightenment, are well-nigh exclusively under the control of those whose immediate pecuniary interests are antagonistic to the bottom claim of Socialism that labor should be put in possession of its own. (shrink)
Abstract This has been an unusually productive exchange. My critics largely accept my main theoretical claims about economic calculation and socialism. They have also started to do what advocates of the Misesian view should have been doing for decades: offer empirical evidence that that the calculation problem is serious. While I continue to believe that incentive problems explain most of the failures of socialism, I am slightly less confident than I was before. Fortunately, there are many unexploited sources (...) of information to help resolve the issue. (shrink)
Doppelt argues that the democratic socialist conception of human freedom expressed in some recent works of mine lacks philosophical justification and fails to get to the roots of the socialist ideals of dignity, human worth, and self-respect. Doppelt claims to provide a new approach to the grounding of human freedom which allows him to avoid what he regards as the narrowness of my own conception. Not only does Doppelt fail to show that my own conception of freedom is confined to (...) self-management and cannot embrace the dimensions of social life his own paradigm is claimed to take care of, his article fails to raise or resolve the question of the conflict between the democratic socialist and the Rawlsian components that make up his 'new' paradigm. In this reply I discuss the issues Doppelt himself raises in connection with my own work: (1) how to ground human freedom; (2) whether my conception of freedom in democratic socialism is rationally preferable to the conception embodied in contemporary capitalist society; and (3) whether my idea of freedom does indeed exclude those dimensions of life to which Doppelt refers. (shrink)
In a recent article, ?Marxism and Radical Democracy?,1 Femia argues that Marxism is incompatible with radical democracy. In so doing he specifically reiterates2 a now common claim that the notion of scientific socialism defended by Marx and Engels and prevalent in the Second International is anti?democratic. This claim has not only been made by critics of Marxism.3 It has been a major criticism of classical Marxism within the Western Marxist tradition, in particular? in the work of the Frankfurt School.4 (...) It is one of the main reasons why the classical Marxism of Engels and the Second International has been rejected as positivist and vulgar: no modern sophisticated Marxist admits to either positivism or vulgarity. In this paper I examine and reject Femia's arguments for the claim that the notion of scientific socialism is undemocratic. I argue that the orthodox view of Marxism as a scientific theory is compatible with democracy, and indeed encourages a democratic understanding of socialism. A thoroughly vulgar Marxism is thoroughly democratic. (shrink)
COMMUNISM AND DEVELOPMENT by Robert Bideleux New York: Methuen, 1985. 315 pp., $39.95 (paper) MARXISM, SOCIALISM, FREEDOM: TOWARDS A GENERAL DEMOCRATIC THEORY OF LABOUR?MANAGED SYSTEMS by Radoslav Selucky New York: St. Martin's Press, 1979. 237 pp., $22.50 UNORTHODOX MARXISM: AN ESSAY ON CAPITALISM, SOCIALISM AND REVOLUTION by Michael Albert and Robin Hahnel Boston: South End Press, 1978. 379 pp., $8.50 (paper).
The labor theory of value provides both a moral and a conceptual foundation for an equitable and efficient socialism. Given modern information technology, a system of planning can work. Markets in consumer goods are required, but not markets for the means of production. We advocate a system of payment in labor-tokens, and argue for its superiority over the wages system in terms of both equity and economic efficiency.
Traditionally, debates over the issue of representation in liberalism and in socialism focused on such questions as who or whose interests should be represented in order to attest to the legitimacy of representation. In this article, a different and more fundamental approach is achieved by asking how the representation is accomplished. At this methodological point, liberalism and socialism diverge in their understanding of representative government: Each follows its own philosophical paradigm(s) that underly and justify its position. Differences between (...) liberal and socialist understandings of representation are analytically compared in three pairs of categories: (a) micro versus macro, (b) individual versus class, and (c) the formalistic versus the substantive. The most crucial differences between the social systems are found in the last pair of categories-the formalistic versus the substantive approach to representationbecause different understandings of central concepts such as democracy, freedom, and equality stem from these two frameworks. (shrink)
?Objectivity?; has been a traditional ideal for American journalism despite recent characterizations of the principle as ?biased toward the status quo, against independent thinking, and against countenancing questions of morality and responsibility.?; This article explores the role of traditional objectivity in newspaper coverage of the nomination in Alaska of a socialist commissioner of environmental conservation and the subsequent ?framing?; of public discussion. The human qualities of sensitivity to history, to civil liberties, and to questions of morality appeared in editorials, but (...) professional norms of objectivity denied reporters the right to exercise their creativity and public responsibility. Reportorial sensitivity to diverse sources is necessary, supplemented by a fundamental and far?reaching examination of how reportorial language encodes public and private questions in ways that further established positions of power and privilege. (shrink)
The author discusses some aspects of the problem how to transform the former socialist into democratic states. In the first part he argues that the ‘socialist societies’ were not societies in the modern sense but organized in the way of traditional community without (civil) society---with the absolute domination of politics over all spheres of societal activities, in which the only permitted (Communist) Party, mostly reduced to the power of the secretary general, used to decide over almost everything. The psychic functional (...) basis of socialism was happy consciousness and collective narcissism. In the second part the author warns that the realization of the “European way of Iife,” as a basic program of changes in Europe in 1989, was misunderstood because it was conceived as a fixed content and not as a procedure of attaining agreement. In the third part he concludes that nationalism and fervent religiosity, which predominate in several ex-socialist countries, are main obstacles of the transformation of the former socialism because of their exclusion of the different. This tends to continue the societyless community, filled with again absolutized (national or religious) contents, namely with new forms of collective narcissism. (shrink)
Doppelt argues that the democratic socialist conception of human freedom expressed in some recent works of mine lacks philosophical justification and fails to get to the roots of the socialist ideals of dignity, human worth, and self?respect. Doppelt claims to provide a new approach to the grounding of human freedom which allows him to avoid what he regards as the narrowness of my own conception. Not only does Doppelt fail to show that my own conception of freedom is confined to (...) self?management and cannot embrace the dimensions of social life his own paradigm is claimed to take care of, his article fails to raise or resolve the question of the conflict between the democratic socialist and the Rawlsian components that make up his ?new? paradigm. In this reply I discuss the issues Doppelt himself raises in connection with my own work: (1) how to ground human freedom; (2) whether my conception of freedom in democratic socialism is rationally preferable to the conception embodied in contemporary capitalist society; and (3) whether my idea of freedom does indeed exclude those dimensions of life to which Doppelt refers. (shrink)
Alienation is the name of the deformations of human personality produced by capitalism and, specifically, by wage labor. The alienated are powerless. That inhibits their self-esteem, and takes from them the direction of their own lives and the choice of their life values. They become passive bystanders to existence, distrustful of their fellows and motivated by the desire for gain. The alienated tend to be timid, morally indifferent, and ready to support great evil. Appearances are all that matters to them. (...) They are resentful, conservative. Alienation itself becomes invisible. It unfits those who work for a wage from being active in the movements for social change from capitalism to socialism. The transition to socialism appears to become well-nigh impossible. The force of this argument ismoderated by the fact that the conditions of wage labor are not uniform and alienation, and therefore are more severe for some workers than for others. (shrink)
From the early 1840s on, Jeremy Bentham’s utilitarian doctrine aroused the joint interest of Marx and Engels, who saw the English philosopher as one of the forerunners of socialism. Later, however, in the various editions (German, French, English) of Book 1 of Capital (1867/90), Bentham would be sarcastically branded by Marx as a “genius of bourgeois stupidity”. In their youth, both Engels and Marx had independently become interested in Bentham’s ideas, admiring some social-ethical themes, seen as heralding interesting developments (...) for the cause of the proletariat. On Engels’s suggestion, Marx included Bentham’s name, alongside those of the major 18th–19th century English and French exponents of protosocialism, in a planned Library of the most outstanding foreign socialist writers (1845), which however remained only a draft. From his first stay in England (1842/44), the young Engels had embraced in particular the famous utilitarian principle of “the greatest happiness of the greatest number” advocated by Bentham. Marx, on the other hand, after initially praising Bentham’s work, which he had read in a French translation during his exile in Paris (1844), harshly criticized the ambiguous implications of this principle. In fact, he believed thatbehind a misleading progressive façade, it constituted the philosophical equivalent of the later economic theory of labour productivity propounded by D. Ricardo in opposition to the theory of its mere quantitative extension put forward by A. Smith. In the London Manuscripts (1861/63) Marx will reveal the affinity betweenBentham’s principle of the happpiness of the greatest number of people, and Ricardo’s assumption of the ineliminable misery of the minority condemned to productive labour. Based on the collection of Marx’s and Engels’s texts (letters, drafts, notebooks, manuscripts, printed works), made available today thanks to the critical edition by MEGA1, this paper sets out to re-examine, im großen und ganzen, the main moments in their critique of Bentham’s Utilitarianism. (shrink)
This unique anthology brings together readings from the works of the most significant post-Leninist Marxist thinkers. The selections reflect the diversity and high intellectual accomplishment of twentieth-century Marxism and show how these theorists have transformed traditional Marxism's general philosophical orientation, interpretation of historical materialism, models of socialist political practice, and conception of human liberation. The writings reveal the evolution of a sophisticated and democratic Marxism with a theoretical emphasis on class consciousness and subjectivity, a resistance to all forms of domination--including (...) sexism--and a belief in the political power of consciousness-raising. The selections include the work of forerunners Karl Korsch, George Lukacs, and Antonio Gramsci; figures from the 1930s, including Max Horkheimer, Theodor Adorno, and Wilhelm Reich; post-war and New Left thinkers Jean-Paul Sartre, Andre Gorz, Herbert Marcuse, and Jurgen Habermas; and contemporary socialist-feminists Sheila Rowbotham, Juliet Mitchell, Barbara Ehrenreich, Heidi Hartmann, and Ann Ferguson. Gottlieb places the readings in historical and theoretical context, providing a clear and insightful account of the intellectual problems and historical events that gave rise to the Western Marxism, and describing how it both anticipated and influenced contemporary radical movements. Each selection is prefaced by a biographical sketch and the book concludes with a bibliography suggesting further research. (shrink)
After the collapse of the command structures of the party-state in society and economy, it appeared that the integrative mechanisms as they are developing now in the post-socialist countries have a very limited cohesiveness in the sense that they can not easily support disequilibria and resist disruptions. The asynchronous collapse of old and developing of new integrative mechanisms created integrational vacuums at various levels. The dynamics of this process of conflicting time scales created additional problems of cohesion in each of (...) the domains. It appeared that (dis)integration processes in politics and economics are closely interrelated. Marketization in itself offered enforced fragmentation rather than furthering cohesÃon. The link between cohesion within Central and Eastern Europe and Europe at large is also discussed here. (shrink)
Abstract The recent proliferation of economically informed writings favoring market socialism exhibits dissonances in this evolving theoretical orientation. The ethical presuppositions of classical socialism have often been inherited by those who now embrace markets under socialism. But precisely because it accepts markets, market socialism may prove incompatible with these sentiments.
THE LEFT AND RIGHTS: A CONCEPTUAL ANALYSIS OF SOCIALIST RIGHTS by Tom Campbell Boston: Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1983. 296 pp., $12.95 Campbell's attempt to construct a socialist version of rights and the rule of law fails because it does not draw on individualism. Campbell's positive rights are ineffective barrien to both the schemes of Utopian visionaries who command political authority and more mundane sources of the abuse of power. He leaves unanswered the question of who will determine the extent (...) of the ?needs?; that would constitute socialist rights, in the absence of unlimited resources to fulfill them. And his rejection of individualism ¡eaves him no means of adjudicating among conflicting positive claim?rights. (shrink)
The statement “Building the socialist harmonious society” contains the recognition and understanding of the conflicts of values in the contemporary society. The connotation of socialist harmonious society contains its own dominant values: In the relations of person-to-person, it requires democracy to guarantee the achievement of freedom and rule of law to ensure social fairness and justice. In the relationship of human and nature, it demands harmony between man and nature and the coordinated and sustainable development of economy, society and ecology. (...) Putting-people-first is the essential principle. The construction of contemporary values is a basic approach of building the socialist harmonious society. (shrink)
In my 1990 work – Marxism, Morality, and Social Justice – I argued for four modifications of Rawls’s principles of social justice and rendered a modified version of his theory in four principles, the first of which is the Basic Rights Principle demanding the protection of people’s security and subsistence rights. In both his Political Liberalism (1993) and Justice as Fairness (2001) Rawls explicitly refers to my version of his theory, clearly accepting three of my four proposed modifications but rejecting (...) the fourth -- the demand for social and economic (in addition to political) democracy – on grounds that it automatically justifies socialism as opposed to capitalism. I argue, contrary to Rawls, that it is not true that this demand automatically picks (democratic) socialism as the preferable socioeconomic/political system and that a Social and Economic Democracy Principle demanding workplace and neighborhood democracy is officially neutral between these two systems … although plausible empirical assumptions may, indeed, favor the former. I then reprise my second version of Rawls’s theory of social justice which is composed of the following principles arranged in a very strong order of priority (if not quite a lexical order): (1) Basic Rights Principle, (2) Equal Basic Liberties Principle, (3) Fair Equality of Opportunity Principle, (4) Modified Difference Principle, and (5) Social and Economic Democracy Principle. (shrink)
Presents a provocatively anthropocentric analysis of the way forward for green politics and environmental movements, exposing the deficiencies and contradictions of green approaches to post-modern politics and deep ecology. This title available in eBook format. Click here for more information . Visit our eBookstore at: www.ebookstore.tandf.co.uk.
In A Darwinian left Peter Singer aims to reconcile Darwinian theory with left wing politics, using evolutionary game theory and in particular a model proposed by Robert Axelrod, which shows that cooperation can be an evolutionarily successful strategy. In this paper I will show that whilst Axelrod’s model can give support to a kind of left wing politics, it is not the kind that Singer himself envisages. In fact, it is shown that there are insurmountable problems for the idea of (...) increasing Axelrodian cooperation within a welfare state. My surprising conclusion will be that a Darwinian left worthy of the name would be anarchistic. Ó 2005 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. (shrink)