Barter

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repiona
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Apr 4 2010 16:22
Barter

I'd like to know if there are any anarchist bartering* groups trusted websites etc.
I think it should be more encouraged to combat capitalism!

*Bartering is an ancient method of trade, with goods or services exchanged without the use of money.

Salud smile

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Joseph Kay
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Apr 4 2010 16:30

why not just sell what you have on ebay, and use the money to buy what you want?

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Tojiah
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Apr 4 2010 17:55
Joseph Kay wrote:
why not just sell what you have on ebay, and use the money to buy what you want?

Haven't you heard that efficiency is morally deficient?

radicalgraffiti
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Apr 4 2010 19:57

i don't think that would really do anything to undermine capitlaism.

theres this http://www.uk.freecycle.org/ its not anarchist or barter but you might be able to get some stuff for free

i also noticed a load of groups on facebook with titles like "for sale or swap in.." don't have any idea if they are any good or not.

Wellclose Square
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Apr 4 2010 21:27

Might like to look at this too http://www.ilovefreegle.org/
I think it was set up as an alternative to freecycle. Got a ferret cage through it.

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PartyBucket
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Apr 4 2010 22:26
Joseph Kay wrote:
why not just sell what you have on ebay, and use the money to buy what you want?

Cos the seller fees are a fucking joke is why sad

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oisleep
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Apr 5 2010 11:40
repiona wrote:
I'd like to know if there are any anarchist battering groups

me too

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jef costello
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Apr 5 2010 14:17
notch8 wrote:
Joseph Kay wrote:
why not just sell what you have on ebay, and use the money to buy what you want?

Cos the seller fees are a fucking joke is why :(

I hear you, they've made it pretty much impossible to sell books. You have to pay commission on the sale and as you can't charge postage you need to raise the price high enough to pay listing fees as well. Add in the fact they take a cut from your paypal and it's uneconomical to sell anything that isn't expensive and guaranteed to sell.

repiona
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Apr 8 2010 13:12

To buy and to sell you need to exchange money, with bartering you don’t, that’s a great way of fucking the system.

I know freecycle.org, that’s just to get stuff for free but that’s not the point. Of course I know ebay too again you are missing the point there.

Bartering is not only for goods but also for services. Say you can teach Yoga or you can do a tai chi lesson but you need your carpet cleaned in exchange etcetera…

I might have to start my own network if there’s none out there…

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oisleep
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Apr 8 2010 13:36
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To buy and to sell you need to exchange money, with bartering you don’t, that’s a great way of fucking the system

no it's not, it's like getting rid of the pope and thinking you've got rid of catholicism. even marx thought that the most efficient 'ideal' form of capitalist production & circulation would not actually involve money

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Bartering is not only for goods but also for services.

these goods that are bartered, where do they come from? how are they produced, what are the social relations under which they are produced, and how are they acquired in the first place to then be bartered?

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Say you can teach Yoga or you can do a tai chi lesson but you need your carpet cleaned in exchange etcetera…

probably some of biggest issues facing ordinary people at the moment

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I might have to start my own network if there’s none out there

the timebank network is the closest thing to what you are after, it's full of people offering tai chi and yoga lessons, trouble is that's pretty much the only people who join those things so there's an oversupply of useless things that no one needs - and while the concept of this (but not its practical application) is a sound idea, it only really applies to services and people's time, not goods or day to day necessities that people need to live their lives

repiona
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Apr 8 2010 17:55

We cannot get rid of capitalism that easy but feeding it with more money isn't the best thing to do. You can't just close your eyes and go with it without trying anything.

Money is the symbol and food of capitalism, when you use the money you are feeding the monster.

And if I can help it I won't be using it. I barter actively with people that are not necessarily anarchists and they all love it. In my case generally I have bartered for services rather than goods. I wouldn't like to support any mass production company with my barter and it's hard to spot things sometimes.

I buy my clothes mostly from charity shops and I use a lot of recycled stuff but yes we are all sinners and I confess that I have sometimes seen a bargain and I have bought something from a big chain place but wouldn't do that automatically.

The reason I was searching for a specific anarchist link that does barter was precisely to avoid feeding a big company that has manufactured a certain product.

Not sure if you are following me anymore lol but where I am trying to go is exactly to the point of exchanging goods and/or services for everyday use. Long shot I know but worth a try.

I am open to any suggestions/ideas and whatever.

I don't know anything about timebank network, I have done a few searches but still unsure could you please send me a link.

Salud y anarquia circle A

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PartyBucket
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Apr 8 2010 19:17
repiona wrote:
In my case generally I have bartered for services rather than goods

Lots of people know a plumber/spark/mechanic/etc who will do a homer for a case of beer, but it has little to do with sticking it to teh capitalismz

repiona wrote:
yes we are all sinners and I confess that I have sometimes seen a bargain and I have bought something from a big chain place.

Say 10 Hail Marys (and watch where the priest is putting his hands).

Seriously, if you look around the site, you'll get the gist, generally posters here, while having nothing against this sort of stuff, dont think that you can 'opt out' of capitalism by doing it, or that it is a fundamental challenge to capitalism.

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Apr 8 2010 20:03
oisleep wrote:
no it's not, it's like getting rid of the pope and thinking you've got rid of catholicism. even marx thought that the most efficient 'ideal' form of capitalist production & circulation would not actually involve money

Really? What did he say exactly? I'm interested.

repiona
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Apr 9 2010 10:21

Well, it’s an alternative... Unfortunately we cannot all be self-sufficient because that’d be the ideal thing to do...

Salud y anarquia circle A

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Apr 9 2010 10:37
888 wrote:
oisleep wrote:
no it's not, it's like getting rid of the pope and thinking you've got rid of catholicism. even marx thought that the most efficient 'ideal' form of capitalist production & circulation would not actually involve money

Really? What did he say exactly? I'm interested.

can't track down the quotes but it's in volume 2 somewhere in the section on the circuit/turnover of capital - fairly straightforward logic really in that although capital clearly needs to fully traverse the circuit from money to productive capital to commodity capital and then back to money again, value itself is only produced within the production stage, so the ideal situation is for the time that value is spent in the money and commodity form's should be minimised, hence efficiencies in transport/communication/circulation etc.. are key to an efficient traverse of the circuit and to allow value to 'work harder' and spend less time in the forms that does not allow it to directly valorise itself

So taken to logical conclusion an ideal type capitalism would skip the stages of commodity capital being turned into money and that money then being turned back into productive capital and instead the commodities coming out of the production phase would be converted immediately back into the productive capital inputs of means of production and labour - he wasn't suggesting that this would ever be possible practically but from an ideal perspective this would be the most efficient (if an efficient way of doing it could ever be found).

I'll try and dig out the quotes when have some time

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Apr 9 2010 10:51
oisleep wrote:
888 wrote:
oisleep wrote:
no it's not, it's like getting rid of the pope and thinking you've got rid of catholicism. even marx thought that the most efficient 'ideal' form of capitalist production & circulation would not actually involve money

Really? What did he say exactly? I'm interested.

can't track down the quotes but it's in volume 2 somewhere in the section on the circuit/turnover of capital - fairly straightforward logic really in that although capital clearly needs to fully traverse the circuit from money to productive capital to commodity capital and then back to money again, value itself is only produced within the production stage, so the ideal situation is for the time that value is spent in the money and commodity form's should be minimised, hence efficiencies in transport/communication/circulation etc.. are key to an efficient traverse of the circuit and to allow value to 'work harder' and spend less time in the forms that does not allow it to directly valorise itself

So taken to logical conclusion an ideal type capitalism would skip the stages of commodity capital being turned into money and that money then being turned back into productive capital and instead the commodities coming out of the production phase would be converted immediately back into the productive capital inputs of means of production and labour - he wasn't suggesting that this would ever be possible practically but from an ideal perspective this would be the most efficient (if an efficient way of doing it could ever be found).

I'll try and dig out the quotes when have some time

Isn't it kind of inconsistent with the exorbitant amount of time capital spends as money (and debt, and defaults, and stocks, etc) in the current market? The finance industry, which is the ultimate luftgescheft, is taking up a larger and larger role, not the other way around.

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oisleep
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Apr 9 2010 11:00
Quote:
I'll try and dig out the quotes when have some time

a few quotes along those lines here, don't think they were the ones I was thinking off though, although they touch on the same thing

capital vol 2, part I, chapter 5 wrote:
Within the sphere of circulation, capital abides as commodity-capital and money-capital. Its two processes of circulation consist in its transformation from the commodity-form into that of money and from the money-form into that of commodities.............

.........Time of circulation and time of production mutually exclude each other. During its time of circulation capital does not perform the functions of productive capital and therefore produces neither commodities nor surplus-value. If we study the circuit in its simplest form, as when the entire capital-value passes in one bulk from one phase into another, it becomes palpably evident that the process of production and therefore also the self-expansion of capital-value are interrupted so long as its time of circulation lasts...........

......The expansion and contraction of the time of circulation operate therefore as negative limits to the contraction or expansion of the time of production or of the extent to which a capital of a given size functions as productive capital. The more the metamorphoses of circulation of a certain capital are only ideal, i.e., the more the time of circulation is equal to zero, or approaches zero, the more does capital function, the more does its productivity and the self-expansion of its value increase. For instance, if a capitalist executes an order by the terms of which he receives payment on delivery of the product, and if this payment is made in his own means of production, the time of circulation approaches zero........

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Apr 9 2010 11:17
tojiah wrote:
Isn't it kind of inconsistent with the exorbitant amount of time capital spends as money (and debt, and defaults, and stocks, etc) in the current market? The finance industry, which is the ultimate luftgescheft, is taking up a larger and larger role, not the other way around.

it's not inconsistent in terms of analysis no - all it does is show the internal contradictions within capital and how it does stupid things because it doesn't understand itself

the surge of financialisation is based on the false idea that value can somehow be generated from the circulation process alone, i.e. skipping the need to actually produce commodities and value in the productive stage (when at best all that can happen is that existing value created in production elsewhere is captured or appropriated by owners of finance capital through circulation processes leaving less left over to acrrue to other forms of capital)

what has went on over the last few decades was a struggle over distribution of existing value created (in production) which although allowed a huge amount of value to accrue to finance capital this perpetuated the myth that this value was actually created through these activities rather than just captured from elsewhere - hence the rush of capital into these areas as the mistaken belief was that you could skip the messy production stage and create value out of circulation - so the more and more capital moved out of production and into these circulation type processes the less actual overall value was created in society overall and instead of capital focussing on how to create new value it fought over the distribution of a dwindling pool of value that was still being created in production - the effects of which has been pretty clear over the last few years

marx was pretty prescient about stuff like that happening when he stresses the differences between the phenomenal surface like interpretation of how capital works (i.e. vulgar political economy) which makes it appear that all you need to do is hold money and it will magically grow and the actual core workings of a system of capitalist production - which was pretty much the whole point of writing capital

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Apr 9 2010 11:26

back to the original poster, bartering is not outside of capitalism in any way. Money is just a symbol used in exchange, what defines capitalism is the relationships in production.

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Apr 9 2010 11:36
oisleep wrote:
tojiah wrote:
Isn't it kind of inconsistent with the exorbitant amount of time capital spends as money (and debt, and defaults, and stocks, etc) in the current market? The finance industry, which is the ultimate luftgescheft, is taking up a larger and larger role, not the other way around.

it's not inconsistent in terms of analysis no - all it does is show the internal contradictions within capital and how it does stupid things because it doesn't understand itself

the surge of financialisation is based on the false idea that value can somehow be generated from the circulation process alone, i.e. skipping the need to actually produce commodities and value in the productive stage (when at best all that can happen is that existing value created in production elsewhere is captured or appropriated by owners of finance capital through circulation processes leaving less left over to acrrue to other forms of capital)

what has went on over the last few decades was a struggle over distribution of existing value created (in production) which although allowed a huge amount of value to accrue to finance capital this perpetuated the myth that this value was actually created through these activities rather than just captured from elsewhere - hence the rush of capital into these areas as the mistaken belief was that you could skip the messy production stage and create value out of circulation - so the more and more capital moved out of production and into these circulation type processes the less actual overall value was created in society overall and instead of capital focussing on how to create new value it fought over the distribution of a dwindling pool of value that was still being created in production - the effects of which has been pretty clear over the last few years

marx was pretty prescient about stuff like that happening when he stresses the differences between the phenomenal surface like interpretation of how capital works (i.e. vulgar political economy) which makes it appear that all you need to do is hold money and it will magically grow and the actual core workings of a system of capitalist production - which was pretty much the whole point of writing capital

How is it prescient? Did he predict that capital would actually move further and further away from its "ideal" form? On the contrary, his analysis seems to actually indicate that capitalism should move towards this ideal because it increases "its productivity and the self-expansion of its value".

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Apr 9 2010 13:32
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How is it prescient?

by spending considerbale time and analysis pointing out the difference between the phenomenal/appearance like form of how capitalism works (which capitalists tend to focus on when making decisions) and it's actual core workings (which is often completely different to it's phenomenal form) led him to posit in many cases where decisions (or more correctly tendencies to do particular things) would be made which on the surface looked to be 'productive' or beneficial for capital as a whole but in actual fact led to things which actually undermined the ongoing viability of capital and the reproduction of the relations which underpins it.

his work on productivity, interest bearing capital and the equalisation of the profit rate (leading to capitalists being blinded to the fact that its actually labour that creates value and not capital invested) are areas where history has proved him right. You seem to think there is some contradiction in marx being able to predict the likely course of events in terms of the development of capital while at the same time highlighting that this development would indeed undermine capital's very existence - i.e move away from the ideal situation for capital (not that there is one really)

Quote:
Did he predict that capital would actually move further and further away from its "ideal" form? On the contrary, his analysis seems to actually indicate that capitalism should move towards this ideal because it increases "its productivity and the self-expansion of its value".

his work is full of examples of the tendency of capital to move away from its 'ideal form' yes - for example his prediction that the ongoing increase in productivity (i.e. the means of increasing surplus value) would ultimtately come into contradiction with, and undermine, the ultimate end goal of capital which is the ongoing valorisation of itself through increased surplus value extraction. An ideal form for capital would be to somehow not do things which undermines itself (obviously an impossible goal) , yet all of marx's work is shot through with examples of capital undermining itself. Conversely his work also contains lots of prescient analysis of capital moving towards a more efficient and 'ideal' functioning - just because something is recognised as an 'ideal' form from one perspective however doesn't mean that he thought this 'ideal' was actually achievable or realisable, i.e. the complete elimination of the sphere of circulation - but as the quotes i gave above show he clearly predicted the move towards the vast increase in transport/communication/credit/circulation networks that aim to ensure that capital can speedily and efficiently traverse it's circuit and spend the minimum amount of time in circulation as required

with regards to money in the form of interest bearing capital (i.e. finance capital) he saw this as capital in it's most fetish like form, a form which led people to think that money actually creates money, therefore creating the conditions which lead capitalists to think that value could be created by bypassing the production of use values, therefore predicting that capital would move further and further away from it's 'ideal' form, i.e. a form which is rooted in the production of use values.

and as his ultimate analysis is that capital would not last forever then the destruction by capital, largely by actions internal to capital itself, is not exactly what I would call capital's 'ideal' form - so yes he clearly did predict that capital would move further and further away from its ideal form

Perhaps some of the confusion here is because there are effectively two different discussions going on - the first in relation to barter is about money's role in the production & realisation of commodities and the surplus value they contain - with regards to this marx clearly saw money as a requirement to this process, but at the same time recognises while value was in the form of money it restricts the ability of that value to operate as productive capital and thus extract/produce value, so an ideal form is to minimise the amount of time value spends as money in the course of the production of commodities. The second discussion relates to money being used purely within the circulation sphere and due to it's fetish like form as interest bearing capital it creates a tendency for capital to bypass altogether the production of commodities and instead attempts to valorise itself within the sphere of circulation alone. This is not ideal for capital's survivial as it shuts itself off from the one sphere that it is productive in and allows it to exapnd, however this doesn't mean that this tendency won't happen, and again marx proved that the phenomenal/surface like appearance of capital leads to things happening which undermine it. I've forgot what the point of this is now sorry

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Apr 10 2010 09:13
Steven. wrote:
back to the original poster, bartering is not outside of capitalism in any way. Money is just a symbol used in exchange, what defines capitalism is the relationships in production.

Right. Anger and antagonism towards money and the role that it plays in our lives in capitalist society is completely normal and understandable. I imagine all of us here possess both. While barter may allow one to partially bypass the money exchange nexus and thus the need for money, it in no way whatsoever undermines or poses any kind of threat to capitalism. As Steven noted, money is just a symbol, and what it is a symbol of is value. In fact, in bartering within capitalist society -- and there is no 'outside' of capitalism this side of its abolition -- people tend to gravitate towards exchanging products and services pretty close to what their value actually is, as determined by the average social labour time necessary for their production. That is the law of value. That is exchange fully consonant with normal capitalist functioning.

btw, great post, oisleep, even if you forgot the point of it.

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Apr 10 2010 10:01

I agree. Thanks for the clarification. smile