May 01, 2013

Yglesias on Marxism

Read the whole thing here.
In summary, I'm not a Marxist. But I worry that political conservatives are going to turn me into one. My view is that full employment and robust systems of redistribution from the more fortunate to the less fortunate are possible. I see real evidence for this in the world. The Obama administration has actually enacted a lot of redistribution programs, and the government of Australia has maintained consistent full employment policies for a long time now. But the collapse of the Soviet Union, a good thing on its own terms, has had the bad consequence of breeding massive complacency among the upper classes in the West. It used to seem important to people in the rich countries to prove that market economies not only could but in fact would lead to broadly rising living standards. But today we're living in a 401(k) world.

See also It's a 401(k) world and It Basically Sucks.

2 Comments:

Blogger First Sea Lord said...

I had the same reaction to that Friedman piece. Here, in his typical infuriating blankness:

"Last week, The Economist quoted one labor expert, Peter Cappelli of the Wharton business school, as saying that companies now regard filling a job as being “like buying a spare part: you expect it to fit.” "

Which, instead of making another great case for erasing universities with human beings in them, and the glorious wonders of all technologies in all circumstances, it's like he's illustrating a textbook on Marxism 101 under Reification: the turning of the human being into the object, which is of course, as disposable, as supernumerary as possible.

This isn't economics, it's not even religion- it's a Cult of the Asshole.

May 2, 2013 at 10:05 AM  
Blogger The Other Front said...

Makes you wonder why people put up with it.

There's just a really big problem with companies being able to run the government for their own benefit. Corporatizing government is not a good idea. It will not go well. They should think about stopping. It's not a good idea.

Anyway, shit's going to get real reasonably quickly. 30-40% of baby boomers have zero savings. A significant proportion of the remainder will be bankrupted by their first serious health problem.

This will modify the views of millions of registered voters.

May 2, 2013 at 7:33 PM  

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