What do you think of this interview, "America Beyond Capitalism" with Gar Alperovitz

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Joined: 18-11-11
Dec 27 2011 23:26
What do you think of this interview, "America Beyond Capitalism" with Gar Alperovitz


Joined: 18-11-11
Dec 27 2011 23:52

I haven't read his work at all. First I've heard of him. Sounds interesting

Railyon's picture
Joined: 4-11-11
Dec 28 2011 00:23

Not convinced.

First I heard of him too, but the interview gave me the impression he's not really against capitalism as such, only against concentration of power and wealth.

Sounds like he is advocating a form of market-based "socialism", a decentralised, "worker-run" capitalism.

And that's still highly flawed - even a "worker-run company" like he's favoring is subjected to the rule of the market and value production, something some people around here call "worker's self-exploitation" when talking about co-ops.

Secondly, a market-based economy will always lead to centralization (assuming it is laissez-faire; caps to capital might reduce that effect).

I'm pretty sure Marx would call this petty-bourgeois.

Joined: 7-01-12
Jan 7 2012 05:02

Haha, my first post is resurrecting an old post. But I want to respond to this.

You should check him out It's not really capitalism is it if the workers are producing and allocating their surplus? Also these coops are not profit driven enterprises and locally based and employed locally, designed to build the community, or the commune. If you think of the M-C-M circuit such a circuit doesn't exist here, it's just a place people can work, and produce labor that is needed by there community.

He does say that simply be a transitional phase. Worker participation on the local level he argues would create conditions where workers would realize their true power as workers in a democratic system. What comes next, who knows. I think true communism would be next, it's inevitable we will realize the "free" market is a farce, and how we organize our labor is so stupid, and wasteful. He does not believe full scale revolution will happen, and that this country needs a movement like this to open the eyes of Americans.

As for worker exploitation, can you elaborate? Am I incorrect in my assumption that exploitation is something that always happens when groups of people come together, one group makes stuff, another doesn't(productive vs unproductive). The key to this situation is those producing that surplus should be involved in how it's used, in the case where there is democracy involved then the exploitation is hard to find isn't it?

I should say most of my understanding of Marxian theory comes from Richard Wolff, and Stephen Resnick, Brandon Cooney, Yanis Varoufakis, David Harvey and what I have read of Karl Marx so far.