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Markets, freedom, capitalist dictatorship, and the ambiguities of planned economies

November 6th, 2012 · 3 Comments

http://darwiniana.com/2012/11/04/computers-and-market-clearing/#comment-384655
The comment here is a good softball pitch, for a discussion of the issues, which can continue over time…

This is the standard argument against planned economies, but the argument is getting to be out of date: it is NOT freedom to allow capitalist mega-corporations to dictate all economic decisions, disregard all self-restraint on ecological questions, and, finally, take over democratic government even as the capitalist class assumes a form of power that is transnational. We see that the wheel of dialectic, so to speak, has turned, and now we find capitalist dictatorship to be the issue. Globalization via capitalism is itself becoming a variant of totalitarianism.

So as the question of regulated markets becomes an issue of preventing planetary destruction some means to control that process becomes essential.

The book in question here suggests that computational resources are increasing to the point that market clearing can be done by mega-computers, no more, no less. That can be good, bad, indifferent, and reconciled with any degree of freedom decided on.
This means that in the same way that government controls driving licenses it can, on a much larger scale, control problematical industries that are destructive in their impact on ecology, fail to pay taxes, attack and exploit labor, and the rest of it. I fail to see how this is necessarily totalitarian. The Bolshevik experiment was so close to braindead as to be worthless as an example. It is not what I am referring to.
My point in the post is to ask for some attention to the issue, to call for serious research in questions dismissed by free market dogma.
My ace in the hole is the clear example of world war 2 when the whole of the large scale economy was under government control (but not public ownership): the result was a very efficient war effort. A classic falsification of free market universalist dogma…

We have to face reality: capitalist laissez-faire has become a global menace.

The question is unavoidable because the ‘private property’ of the capitalist class is based on expropriation of ecological resources (what to say of value-added labor time resources) and, in general, it cannot follow that the resources taken from the Commons have any final status as the private property of individuals. This absurdity has reached the point that public resources from water supplies to school management are being asked to join this regime of ‘private property’. Every perspective pushed to extremes becomes an absurdity. \\

We should face reality: the Faustian pact with capitalism came in the same generation with an ‘endgame’ prophecy, the socialist/communist ‘evolution point”, and we have surely come to that point, to that outcome of prophecy.
I can’t see it happening, but it should be the duty of those, such as the Americans, who have so profited from the age of capitalism to pay their debt to humanity by showing how the cheap and easy success of brushfire capitalism can mature to a stage of intelligently designed economies that is based on the needs of the whole population. The current regime of Social Darwinist ideology is going to end in genocide and civil war, to tear America apart. That form of the endgame should be foreseen and that future replaced with a new postcapitalism as a New Communism.

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