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Andrew Kliman

RADICAL INTERPRETATIONS OF THE PRESENT CRISIS

November 14th, 2012

8-10:30PM

WollmanHall
Eugene Lang Building, 6th floor
65 W 11th St
New York, NY10011

WITH: LOREN GOLDNER | DAVID HARVEY | ANDREW KLIMAN | PAUL MATTICK

The Present Crisis

The present moment is arguably one of unprecedented confusion on the Left.  The emergence of many new theoretical perspectives on Marxism, anarchism, and the left generally seem rather than signs of a newfound vitality, the intellectual reflux of its final disintegration in history.  As for the politics that still bothers to describe itself as leftist today, it seems no great merit that it is largely disconnected from the academic left’s disputations over everything from imperialism to ecology. Perhaps nowhere are these symptoms more pronounced than around the subject of the economy.

As Marxist economics has witnessed of late a flurry of recent works, many quite involved in their depth and complexity, recent activism around austerity, joblessness, and non-transparency while quite creative in some respects seems hesitant to oppose with anything but nostalgia for the past the status quo mantra, “There is no Alternative.”  At a time when the United States has entered the most prolonged slump since the Great Depression, the European project founders on the shoals of debt and nationalism.  If the once triumphant neoliberal project of free markets for free people seems utterly exhausted, the “strange non-death of neo-liberalism,” as a recent book title has it, seems poised to carry on indefinitely.  The need for a Marxist politics adequate to the crisis is as great as such a politics is lacking.

And 2011 now seems to be fading into the past.  In Greece today as elsewhere in Europe existing Left parties remain largely passive in the face of the crisis, eschewing radical solutions (if they even imagine such solutions to exist).  In the United States, Occupy has vanished from the parks and streets, leaving only bitter grumbling where there once seemed to be creativity and open-ended potential. In Britain, the 2011 London Riots, rather than political protest, was trumpeted as the shafted generation’s response to the crisis, overshadowing the police brutality that actually occasioned it.  Finally, in the Arab world where, we are told the 2011 revolution is still afoot, it seems inconceivable that the revolution, even as it bears within it the hopes of millions, could alter the economic fate of any but a handful.

While joblessness haunts billions worldwide, politicization of the issue seems chiefly the prerogative of the right.  Meanwhile, the poor worldwide face relentless price rises in fuel and essential foodstuffs. The prospects for world revolution seem remote at best, even as bankers and fund managers seem to lament democracy’s failure in confronting the crisis. In this sense, it seems plausible to argue that there is no crisis at all, but simply the latest stage in an ongoing social regression. What does it mean to say that we face a crisis, after all, when there is no real prospect that anything particularly is likely to change, at least not for the better?

In this opaque historical moment, Platypus wants to raise some basic questions:

* Do we live in a crisis of capitalism today and, if so, of what sort — political? Economic? Social?

* Why do seemingly sophisticated leftist understandings of the world appear unable to assist in the task of changing it?

* Conversely, can the world be thought intelligible without our capacity to self-consciously transform it through practice?

* Can Marxism survive as an economics or social theory without politics?

* Is there capitalism after socialism?

From: Radical Interpretations of the Present Crisis: http://newyork.platypus1917.org/11-14-2012-radical-interpretations-of-the-present-crisis/

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Thanks to Ross Wolfe for alerting me to this important event: Glenn Rikowski

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David Harvey

Capitalist Crisis

DEMYSTIFYING THE ECONOMIC CRISIS

PLEASE CIRCULATE TO OTHER LISTS.

THIS EVENT IS OPEN TO THE GENERAL PUBLIC.

To what do we owe the misery and economic hardship currently sweeping the globe, giving birth to a number of social movements including that of Occupy Wall Street? Reckless banks? Human greed? Amoral politicians? Financial speculation? Partial answers at best, bourgeois obscurities at worst. Come join in a discussion which seeks to expand the discourse circulating throughout the current US occupation movement. 

Tuesday November 8th – 6pm
The New School
Lang Cafeteria – 65 West 11th Street (between 5th and 6th avenues)
New York, NY 10011

Demystifying the Economic Crisis
An evening with Paul Mattick (Adelphi, Philosophy) – author of Business as Usual: The Economic Crisis and the Failure of Capitalism (2011)

For ‘Business as Usual’ 

Capitalist Crisis

see: https://rikowski.wordpress.com/2011/04/11/business-as-usual-the-economic-crisis-and-the-failure-of-capitalism/

Open to bothNewSchool students, faculty, and the general public.

 

 

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Capitalist Crisis

BUSINESS AS USUAL: THE ECONOMIC CRISIS AND THE FAILURE OF CAPITALISM

Business as Usual: The Economic Crisis and the Failure of Capitalism
Paul Mattick
Paperback
978 1 86189 801 2
March 2011
£12.95
200 x 120 mm
128 pages

See: http://www.reaktionbooks.co.uk/book.html?id=451
 
‘Paul Mattick says the recession isn’t just a financial crisis; it manifests a truth about the socioeconomic system in which we live.’ –- Irish Times

‘This lucid and thoughtful study is not just another important contribution to the rapidly expanding literature on the current economic crisis, though it is that as well. With historical depth and penetrating analysis, it seeks to reveal what is “wrong with the mainstream approach to understanding current economic affairs” . . . It provides a grimly realistic picture of what may lie ahead unless there is a radical transformation of the social order from production for profit to pursuit of human ends, based on “shared social decision-making outside the constraints of the business economy,” hence a major step towards true democracy.’ – Noam Chomsky

‘Business as Usual is a superb achievement. In this highly accessible book, Paul Mattick offers an outstanding theoretical and empirical account of the ongoing crisis, its devastating implications for the majority, and a brilliant indictment of the failures of mainstream economics at the levels of theory and policy guidance. It also shows how and why these dismal failures should no longer deter the search for transformative alternatives.’ – Alfredo Saad-Filho, SOAS, University of London

‘For anyone who is unsatisfied with the usual explanations of the current economic crisis – greed and fraud, deregulation, financialization, etc. – and is looking for a deeper explanation, this book is for you. Mattick demonstrates (without jargon and with great clarity) that the root causes of the current crisis lie in the fundamental nature and dynamics of capitalist economies, and places this crisis within the illuminating historical context of recurring capitalist crises since the early 19th century.’ – Fred Moseley, Professor of Economics, Mount Holyoke College

‘This is a fine book. It argues against the illusion that the current crisis is just a bonfire of contingent market forces, exposes economics as the dismal science that it is, and opposes the idea that capitalism is not some sort of economic mechanism that, if expertly regulated by those in the know, works well for the benefit of all. Mattick has to be congratulated not just for writing an immensely rich account of the current crisis but, also, for doing so with immense historical insight, theoretical cunning, and astute political judgement.’ – Werner Bonefeld, University of York

The general consensus is that the world’s economic difficulties can be traced to a crisis in the financial system. Initially brought on by the collapse of the subprime mortgage market in the USA, it spread through a financial landscape defined by high levels of debt and speculative risk. Some point to the dangers of collapse inherent in the modern financial system, while others blame long-term imbalances in the world economy between low-investment, high-consumption areas like the USA and rapidly developing regions such as China and South Asia.

In Business as Usual Paul Mattick explains the recession in jargon-free style, without shying away from serious analysis. He explores current events in relation to the development of the world economy since the Second World War and, more fundamentally, looks at the cycle of crisis and recovery that has characterized capitalism since the early nineteenth century. Mattick situates today’s crisis in the context of a capitalism ruled by a voracious quest for profit. He places the downturn within the context of business cycles and uses this explanation as a springboard for exploring the nature of our capitalist society, and its prospects for the future.

A clear and readable account of the successes and the inherent limits of government attempts to stabilize the economy, Mattick ultimately reveals how today’s downturn is not simply the effect of a financial crisis, but that it manifests a truth about the nature of the social and economic system in which we live.

Paul Mattick is Professor of Philosophy at Adelphi University, New York. He is former editor of the International Journal of Political Economy, author of Art in its Time (2003), and co-author of Art Works: Money (2004).

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Rosa Luxemburg

ROSA LUXEMBURG AND THE CRITIQUE OF POLITICAL ECONOMY

Rosa Luxemburg and the Critique of Political Economy
Edited by Riccardo Bellofiore

This book analyzes the important contributions of Rosa Luxemburg to economic theory as well as devoting some space to her background as a left social-democratic politician and her personality.

The book’s main focus of attention is the theory of capitalist development and the theory of the crash, but its connection with the theory of value, the theory of the monetary circuit, the theory of distribution and the theory of international finance are also explored.

The contributors to the volume come from different theoretical perspectives, both from within and outside the Marxian tradition – Post-Keynesians, Kaleckians and Circuitists are all included.

Table of Contents

Rosa Luxemburg and the Critique of Political Economy, edited by Riccardo Bellofiore, Routledge Studies in the History of Economics, Routledge: Thirteen papers discuss Rosa Luxemburg’s contribution to Marxian critical political economy.

Papers explore:

Rosa Luxemburg’s on capitalist dynamics, distribution and effective demand crises (Riccardo Bellofiore);

Luxemburg’s critique of Karl Marx’s schemes of reproduction–a re-evaluation and a possible generalization (Meghnad Desai and Roberto Veneziani);

Where does the money and demand come from?–Rosa Luxemburg and the Marxian reproduction schema (Andrew B. Trigg);

The monetary circuit of capital in the Anti-Critique (Riccardo Bellofiore);

Late Marx and Luxemburg–opening a development within political economy (Paul Zarembka);

Rosa Luxemburg and finance (Jan Toporowski);

Economics, politics, and crisis theory–Luxemburg, Bukharin, and Grossmann on the limits of capital (Paul Mattick);

Luxemburg’s and Kalecki’s theories and visions of capitalist dynamics (Tadeusz Kowalik);

Imperialism today (Joseph Halevi);

Rosa Luxemburg on imperialism–some issues of substance and method (Roberto Veneziani);

Rosa Luxemburg’s The Accumulation of Capital: East and West (He Ping);

A very political political economist– Rosa Luxemburg’s theory of wages (Michael R. Kraetke);

Rosa Luxemburg on trade unions and the party–the polemics with Kautsky and Lenin—an assessment (Andrea Panaccione); and

Luxemburg–the woman, the revolutionary (Edoarda Masi).

Index

Riccardo Bellofiore is Professor of Political Economy at the University of Bergamo and Research Associate with the Centre for the History and Methodology of Economics at the University of Amsterdam.

June 2009: 216pp | Hardback: 978-0-415-40570-6 £70.00 DISCOUNTED PRICE: £56.00 €66.00

For more information visit: http://www.routledge.com/books/details/9780415405706/

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A Crisis of Capital

THE ECONOMIC CRISIS READER

The Economic Crisis Reader
Edition:1st
Date of publication: November 2009
ISBN:978-1-878585-85-1
Pages:301
Price:$34.95
http://www.dollarsandsense.org/bookstore/crisis_toc.html

    • Introduction
    • 1. General Explanations
        • 1.1    Inequality, Power, and Ideology Arthur MacEwan
        • 1.3    Recession, Depression, Repression: What’s in a Name? John Miller
        • 1.3    That ’70s Crisis Alejandro Reuss
        • 1.4    Crisis and Neoliberal Capitalism David Kotz
        • 1.5    Capitalism Hits the Fan Richard D. Wolff
        • 1.6    We’re All Minskyites Now Robert Pollin
        • 1.7 The “Credit Tsunami” Steve Keen
        • 1.8 Profits, the Business Cycle, and the Current Crisis Paul Mattick
        • 1.9    The Greed Fallacy Arthur MacEwan
    • 2. Warning Signs
        • 2.1 Bubble Trouble Dean Baker
        • 2.2 A House of Cards Tamara Draut and Adria Scharf
        • 2.3    (Mis)Understanding a Banking Industry in Transition William K. Black
        • 2.4    America’s Growing Fringe Economy Howard Karger
        • 2.5    Financialization: A Primer Ramaa Vasudevan
        • 2.6    Private Equity Exposed Orlando Segura, Jr.
        • 2.7    Hedge Funds Arthur MacEwan
        • 2.8    The Fed and America’s Distorted Expansion Thomas I. Palley
        • 2.9    Who Cares If Bear Stearns Fails? Arthur MacEwan
        • 2.10 Can the Fed Handle a Systemic Crisis? Maybe.Jane D’Arista
    • 3. The Housing Crisis
        • 3.1    The Homeownership Myth Howard Karger
        • 3.2    Confidence Trick John Miller
        • 3.3    Renters in the Crosshairs Daniel Fireside
        • 3.4    How to Stop the Foreclosures? Fred Moseley
        • 3.5    The Fannie/Freddie Bailout Fred Moseley
        • 3.6    Who Gets Those Trillions? Arthur MacEwan
    • 4. The Financial Crisis
        • 4.1    From Tulips to Mortgage-Backed Securities Gerald Friedman
        • 4.2    Ponzi Schemes and Speculative Bubbles Arthur MacEwan
        • 4.3    Derivatives and Deregulation Marty Wolfson
        • 4.4    Dealing with a Rotten Tooth Arthur MacEwan
        • 4.5    Time for Permanent Nationalization! Fred Moseley
        • 4.6    Trust Your Gut William Greider
    • 5. Monetary Policy
        • 5.1    Pushing on Strings Gerald Friedman
        • 5.2    Bernanke’s Bad Teachers Gerald Friedman
        • 5.3    The Bailouts Revisited Marty Wolfson
        • 5.4    Focus on the Fed William Greider
        • 5.5    Keynes and the Limits of Monetary Policy Alejandro Reuss
    • 6. Fiscal Policy
        • 6.1 Stimulus Whining John Miller
        • 6.2    How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Deficit John Miller
        • 6.3    Responding to Revisionism Gerald Friedman
        • 6.4    Fiscal Policy and “Crowding Out” Alejandro Reuss
        • 6.5    Why Are Things Getting Worse and worse? Arthur MacEwan
        • 6.6    The Economic Crisis in the Sates Gerald Friedman
        • 6.7    State Budget Blues Marianne Hill
        • 6.8    Bail Out the Safety Net Randy Albelda
        • 6.9    Saving Energy Creates Jobs Heidi Garrett-Peltier
        • 6.10 A New WPA? Ryan A. Dodd
        • 6.11 Rebuilding the Auto Industry from the Wheels Up Alejandro Reuss
    • 7. The International crisis
        • 7.1    Putting the “Global” in the Global Economic Crisis Smriti Rao
        • 7.2    (Economic) Freedom’s Just Another Word for…Crisis-Prone John Miller
        • 7.3    The Specter of Capital Flight Marie Duggan
        • 7.4    Tax Havens and the Financial Crisis Rachel Keeler
        • 7.5    Beyond the World Creditors’ Cartel Dariush Sokolov
        • 7.6 No Bailout for AIDS Mara Kardas-Nelson
        • 7.7 Beijing Statement on the Global Economic Crisis
        • 7.8 Caracas Statement on the Global Economic Crisis

    • 8. Workers and the Crisis
        • 8.1    The Global Crisis and the World Labor Movement Dan LaBotz
        • 8.2    The Real Audacity of Hope Kari Lyderson and James Tracy
        • 8.3    Corporate America’s Counter-Stimulus Strategy Roger Bybee
        • 8.4    Worker Direct Action Grows in Wake of Financial Meltdown Immanuel Ness and Stacy Warner Maddern
        • 8.5    Gender and the Recession Heather Boushey
        • 8.6    The Real Unemployment Rate Hits a 68-Year High John Miller
        • 8.7    Unemployment Insurance: A Broken System Marianne Hill
        • 8.7    Should We Be Talking About Living Wages Now? Jeannette Wicks-Lim
    • Contributors

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