Franz J.T. Lee, October, 2008
Marx' revolutionary solution to the current Wall Street fiasco ... abolition of the wages system!
Once upon a time ... across many billions of earth years ... void of men-gods and god-men, also of the Moloch of labor, on Mother Earth, when 'billions' still were expressing sane, natural, lively relations, and a myriad of healthy, cosmic creations could be anticipated, it was truly possible to invent, experiment and hope. The planet was not yet suffocated by the corporate, imperialist stench of ruling class smog, power, greed, avarice and arrogance. The sacred Planetary Trinity, natural being, social existence and emancipatory transcendence, humans, flora and fauna, were not yet threatened by capitalist technology and industrialization, by the quagmire of making it, of making billions of profits by means of mammoth speculation on the global stock markets, carried out on the scourged and scorched backs of the poor, toiling, global wage slaves.
Over the last two centuries, capitalism and imperialism have actually succeeded seriously to threaten this gigantic, galactic process, this experimentum mundi, and possibly to annihilate it by means of mortal weapons of mass destruction and by horrendous nuclear wars.
Decades ago, in 1949 already, about our zeitgeist, the Marxist philosopher, Ernst Bloch (1885-1977), ... who stated that nowadays a Marxist can only be a philosopher, and that a philosopher can only be a Marxist, ... stated that epochs of radical social transition, like the one that we are experiencing now, in the first place sensitize the dialectical genius, that is, the great educator.
Much earlier, in 1875, in his work, Dialectics of Nature, Friedrich Engels explained the destiny of the current world capitalist crisis, generated by an inexorable maelstrom of competition, centralization and monopolization:
his writing "The Part Played by Labor in the Transition from Ape
to Man" Engels warned: "Man alone has succeeded in
impressing his stamp on nature, not only by shifting plants and
animals from one place to another, but also by so altering the aspect
and climate of his dwelling place, and even the plants and animals
themselves, that the consequences of his activity can disappear only
with the general extinction of the terrestrial globe."
The international ruling class elites fear that with the guidance of Marxism, the majority of mankind would throw off the imprinted cultural chains and intellectual shackles of the age-old mental holocaust, would emancipate themselves from religious mind and body control, and at last, also in the United States of America, would begin to act and think of, by and for themselves. According to neo-con and Nazi strategy the workers should not learn to think independently, to theorize, to philosophize for themselves; ruling class controlled education for barbarism is still condemning millions to genocidal extinction. However, the workers of whole America is awakening; for this reason the Yankee army is on the streets, to apply the terrorist patriot acts against any emergent internal class enemy.
scientific and philosophic socialism, without the dialectical method
of Marxism and without revolutionary praxis and emancipatory theory,
in Venezuela and elsewhere, within the Bolivarian Revolution and the
Permanent Revolution, it will be well nigh impossible to understand
what is going on at Wall Street, in the Nuclear Club, in space
colonization and militarization, in global fascism, in fascist
Let us now look at the transhistoric truth of Marxism and its revolutionary actuality and emancipatory topicality.
In 1848, shortly after the bourgeois industrial revolution in Britain, in the first theory of globalization, in their famous 'Manifesto of the Communist Party', Karl Marx (1818-1883) and Friedrich Engels (1820-1895) scientifically predicted that the "gigantic means of production and of exchange", generated by capitalist society would eventually end up in a total anarchic economic chaos, in uncontrolled social barbarism:
"Modern bourgeois society, with its relations of production, of exchange and of property, a society that has conjured up such gigantic means of production and of exchange, is like the sorcerer who is no longer able to control the powers of the nether world whom he has called up by his spells..."
Over the last 160 years, as already explained as tendential economic laws of the growth of capital, resulting from dialectical contradiction, competition, centralization, monopolization and merging, in Marx' magnum opus (comprising three volumes) 'Das Kapital' (published between 1867 and 1885), ... also by other Marxist works, like Rudolf Hilferding's 'Finance Capital' (1910), Rosa Luxemburg's 'Accumulation of Capital' (1913), Lenin's 'Imperialism, Highest Stage of Capitalism, (1917) and Trotsky's 'Permanent Revolution', but also by modern Marxist works of Ernest Mandel or Alan Woods ... this gigantic financial crash logically had to come at the accumulation level of globalization, with all its global terrorist traits, militarization, genocide and fascism. Also it is crystal clear who all have to bail out their divine warlords.
The North American middle class currently has lost over 18 million homes; outside on the streets, these latest impoverished outcasts are being confronted by the brutal army; as Marx predicted in 'Capital', they are being shaken by the geometric progressive explosion of global pauperization, while the upper ruling elites are merging and devouring themselves.
Yes, revolutionary, scientific and philosophic Marxism, the dialectical negation of capitalism, has not lost its praxical and theoretical creative powers. With some examples we will demonstrate the topicality of Marxism in the 'modern' and 'post-modern' era, in globalization.
Marx and Engels went 'post-modern' in 1848 already, at the beginning of workers' class struggle.
Later on June 27, 1865, in an English address 'Value, Price and Profit' to the General Council of the First International, Marx explained that due to unpaid, stolen labor time, socially exploited wage workers are carrying the whole burden of capital realization and thus are guaranteeing all the financial risks and speculative adventures of their notorious capitalist bosses and the reckless, criminal financiers. Now the American workers have to sacrifice more than $700 billion tax money to rescue speculative imperialist gangsters, to save capitalism from total collapse.
At the moment this century-old capital crime has become an open international secret; Wall Street is letting the cat out of the bag of criminal capital accumulation, as was explained long ago by the 'obsolete' Karl Marx.
Capitalist ideologues claim that Karl Marx is outdated and that Plato and Aristotle are en vogue. However, believe it or not, the 'Wall Street Journal' nowadays considers Karl Marx as an erudite authority worthwhile to quote. Nonetheless, it commits the same ideological mistake as so many other international mass media: it publishes only what suits its class interests, that is, only half-truths.
Three years ago, on May 13, 2005, the front page story headline of the 'Wall Street Journal' read: "As Rich-Poor Gap Widens in the U.S., Class Mobility Stalls". In the last analysis, the article was saying that the United States as a country of infinite social mobility and as the land of a million golden opportunities was and is a pure ideological myth. It claimed that "even Karl Marx accepted the image of America as a land of boundless opportunity. . . . 'The position of wage laborer,' he wrote in 1865, 'is for a very large part of the American people but a probational state, which they are sure to leave within a longer or shorter term.' (Marx)"
However, the editor of the 'Wall Street Journal' did not read Marx' address to the end, that is, he did not read the part which concerns the Marxist emancipatory solution of the current American crisis, of global depression and, of course, the Bolivarian Revolution in Venezuela and South America.
Categorically, Marx stated:
"They (the workers) ought to understand that, with all the miseries it imposes upon them, the present system simultaneously engenders the material conditions and the social forms necessary for an economical reconstruction of society. Instead of the conservative motto, "A fair day's wage for a fair day's work!" they ought to inscribe on their banner the revolutionary watchword, "Abolition of the wages system!"
Let us look now at another quotation that directly concerns the actual global crisis.
Guess who is the author!
"In a system of production, where the entire continuity of the reproduction process rests upon credit, a crisis must obviously occur — a tremendous rush for means of payment — when credit suddenly ceases and only cash payments have validity. At first glance, therefore, the whole crisis seems to be merely a credit and money crisis. And in fact it is only a question of the convertibility of bills of exchange into money. But the majority of these bills represent actual sales and purchases, whose extension far beyond the needs of society is, after all, the basis of the whole crisis. At the same time, an enormous quantity of these bills of exchange represents plain swindle, which now reaches the light of day and collapses; furthermore, unsuccessful speculation with the capital of other people; ... "
Could it be Henry Paulson? Or some neo-con 'think tank'? Let us give more data and facts about the current speculation at Wall Street!
"... finally, commodity-capital which has depreciated or is completely unsaleable, or returns that can never more be realized again. The entire artificial system of forced expansion of the reproduction process cannot, of course, be remedied by having some bank, like the Bank of England, give to all the swindlers the deficient capital by means of its paper and having it buy up all the depreciated commodities at their old nominal values. Incidentally, everything here appears distorted, since in this paper world, the real price and its real basis appear nowhere, but only bullion, metal coin, notes, bills of exchange, securities. Particularly in centers where the entire money business of the country is concentrated, like London, does this distortion become apparent; the entire process becomes incomprehensible; it is less so in centers of production."
Yes, you guessed correctly, the author is Karl Marx.
The text can be found in Capital, Volume 3, Chapter 30, Money-Capital and Real Capital.
With reference to the above text, and concerning its analytic relevance for the current North American financial fiasco, in an excellent article "World capitalism in crisis ", Alan Woods explains:
"The bankers, who yesterday were prepared to buy large amounts of debt from each other, are no longer prepared to do so. Distrust and suspicion has become general. The old easy-going optimism has been replaced by a miserly attitude to borrowing and lending. The entire banking system, upon which the circulation of capital depends, is grinding to a halt. Unless and until all the bad assets are removed, many institutions will still lack sufficient capital to extend fresh credit to the economy."
Surely, Marx described this specific stage in the capitalist economic cycle long ago:
"It is clear that there is a shortage of means of payment during a period of crisis. The convertibility of bills of exchange replaces the metamorphosis of commodities themselves, and so much more so exactly at such times the more a portion of the firms operates on pure credit. Ignorant and mistaken bank legislation, such as that of 1844-45, can intensify this money crisis. But no kind of bank legislation can eliminate a crisis." (Alan Woods, ibid.)
What produced the Wall Street crisis inter alia is the merciless battle, the greed of mongrels and moguls to grasp trillions of dollars, as much as possible of workers' stolen life energy, of unpaid labor time, of speculative, fictitious fiat money. The capitalist vandalism on earth has reached its outer limits; the whole thing has become a huge soap bubble. It could burst any moment, and the apocalyptic consequences would tax our very human imagination to its very intellectual limits too.
In conclusion, it remains to say that profound social crises need radical solutions. Our epoch is not an epoch of the transition of one mode of production passing into another mode of production. It is the global, globalized end of all modes of production. It is the dawn of an exodus, of an 'exvolution', which is the real, true new, a new logic, a new science, a new philosophy, a homo novum.
Currently world events inexorably overtake each other, breathless we register the momentous merging and concentration, the monopolization and militarization. The repressive political and fascist terrorism of these economic earthquakes are still to come. Their brutality will surpass all cardinal and capital crimes known until now.
This is why all this has to be stopped now, it is the eleventh hour. Over the last decade in hundreds of writings I ... and many others ... have warned about the coming state of affairs. Emancipation is not a one man revolution, it is a global task for life, it is not a matter of catechisms or recipes. We learn emancipation in the emancipatory process, in the fierce struggle itself.
So much to do, so little done!
It is the coming 'Age of Aquarius', it is creative, creating emancipation. Marx showed us the anti-capitalist serpentine road, that is, here and now what is to be done:
"Abolition of the wages system!"
With this Labor and Production would vanish into oblivion, that is, Alienation is being sent to hell, to burn with capitalism in fire and brimstone forever.
The rest, how to do, think and excel the New, is up to us. In the meantime, here in Venezuela, our 'transjective' quo vadis is neither bourgeois reform nor French revolution: it is "human emancipation" (Marx)!