Reading a book like this should make us immediately move to an idea of postcapitalism, but such is the successful propaganda against communism, plus its historical legacy, we are unable to get dislodged from the idea that capitalism is not ordained as inevitable. But the whole game in this book is completely shot. The game is rotten at the core and has now gone into a phase of dementia where even the idea of an economy that is functional is lost in the demonic conceptions of the derivatives markets.
I think that the left has to see that capitalism at its worst, in the minds of the general public, still seems better than the communism of Stalin, an egregious deviation from basic principles. The solution is not that difficult in principle: it requires a new left that can start over and reconceive the basic project in a mood of basic sanity, ethical discrimination, and intelligent reserve toward ‘theory’. Where did the Bolshevik experiment go wrong, in the sense of a practical reconception and second draft of the whole project.
In the style of Last and First Men, that requires a new perspective on history, a critique of materialism, a new perspective on religion and the issue of values in the stance of science, and a completely novel set of enthusiasms and commitments that can proceed without making a balox of the whole operation.
In any case, the message doesn’t sink in, but a work such as Gods of Money is a delayed shock: the sociopolitical context of American capitalism is a perverted horror and we need a replacement system.