In classical Marxist theory surplus (economic) value and the role of the workers who both create it and have it “exploited” from them by capitalists, is central to how both capitalism and socialism work.
The process of taking surplus value from workers is akin to theft but that is not the term Marx used, he was perhaps being too polite or more likely he didn’t see capitalism as an unjust system, just unfair. Theft is unjust, exploitation unfair!
The worker works longer hours than he or she needs to, so as to ensure that surplus value is created and in doing so they develop an instrumental relationship to their work. They can’t enjoy it but they have to do it to live. The conclusion we draw from this process is that workers work too much and it is time rather than money that is the basis of 19th-century capitalisms unfairness. The industrial structures of the factory also reinforce the worker’s sense of powerlessness. They are not in control of the industrial processes that determine the pace of their working lives.
This demand for the workers surplus value and the environment within which it is created is the capitalist systems manifestation of the age-old problem of one human, generally male, and holding a superior position taking away from someone else what that someone else has worked hard to create, whilst to varying degrees controlling that person’s life. Every society since the birth of human consciousness has been discriminatory in one form or another. Underpinning this process of discrimination is control by a hierarchy, differently configured, as either tribe, feudal system or industrial hierarchy which causes the worker to feel powerless or oppressed and in the case of capitalism having external control on their work. There is in all societies a trend for control, the controls differ markedly from society to society.
The process of capitalist exploitation gives rise to another classic Marxist theory, the theory of “alienation”. Thus the surplus value taken by the capitalist from the worker is a kind of monetary reflection of the extent of the worker’s alienation.
Alienation is the physical and psychological effect of a worker being exploited. In a strange ironic twist fate for the world, the solution offered by the free market to the alienated worker is the almost limitless supply of goods. The demand for goods by workers has replaced religion as the “opium of the people”. This perhaps explains the success and survival of the free market given it has a debt-dependent and a planet-destroying legacy. People accept being alienated so long as they can purchase goods and the system will produce jobs and goods as long as the debt is available to pay for them.
Now bringing things up to date surplus value is no longer being produced by the capitalist system in sufficient quantities to be taxed by the government and thereby service the social, health, welfare and other state obligations. As a result of western capitalisms failure (it thrives elsewhere!), free market indebtedness has become the means by which the free market a remnant of the western capitalist system, is able to function and produce apparent wealth.
Workers exploitation and alienation have become markedly different since the mid 19th century. Today people have developed a taste for buying stuff made abroad and pay for it with debt that they have to work to pay off. All this in the false belief that spending overcomes alienation rather than reinforcing it, giving alienation in effect a social character. Arguably divorce rates reflect alienation’s social character, people only being concerned about themselves.
The description of capitalism based on a classical model no longer works today as it would have worked for Marx. So what has happened to exploitation, and alienation within the 21st-century free market?
Whilst the impression given by the advocates of the modern western economy is one of promoting abundant goods and services for the consumer, the reality is that it is cheap foreign manufactured goods that mask the continued existence of alienation. In a world with little actual classical capitalist exploitation, how does exploitation still exist and are workers still alienated? We think these are good questions and we will attempt to give a fuller answer here.
Whereas the Classical Marxist worker was not rich enough to get into debt, today the whole western economic model depends upon workers and government debt. What we have is what we at ABlueRevolution call deptamorphosis.
This is the process which sees the worker using their debt to promote a wealthy free-market elite. They do this working long hours often in public service organisations which are still modelled on 19th-century industrial hierarchies. Many earn money paid from government debt, to service their personal debt-dependent lifestyle. This is as alienating for the worker today as it was in the 19th century as they have no influence over their working practices (KPI’s today), nor the ability to escape the treadmill of debt. Just like in Marx’s day the worker has “freedom” to leave the workplace but has little likelihood of using it.
Thus whilst the working environment is a safer environment than in Marx’s day it is no less alienating. Today the worker may be doing work that has little or no economic value, and more controversially little social value either. A state employment system based on hierarchical industrial models and which pays its workers to blame the unemployed because their jobs have gone to China or a health service maintaining a low level of wellness in a system all paid for with debt is alienating for all. This is not an economy free of alienation. Workers don’t feel linked to the people they serve as customers or patients, they are forced to feel a closer link to the system which controls them and pays them. No difference here to the hierarchy of the industrial era and there are huge differentials in pay.
Likewise expecting the worker to become indebted to make “free marketeers” and public servants rich is a new way of exploiting workers that Karl Marx could not have identified if he had lived into the mid 20th century.
Perhaps the solution is to look at where in any modern organisation the social value is created and liberate workers at that level casting out of the organisations the people who have high wages paid to them but they offer little in the way of social value.
If Capitalism had been forced to yield to the dictatorship of the workers, as opposed to evolving into the debt-dependent planet-destroying monster the free market has become, then it is the capitalist and their exploiting hierarchy that would have been put asunder, not the work or the workers themselves. There are lessons here for operational public servants in all departments of the state and the army of 100k+ a year bosses who manage them.
Both main parties have big flaws in their understanding of the landscape of modern economics. This impedes their ability to formulate policies which will empower the working class and lift our nation out of its current diminished, debt dependent and low productive state.
We have done some work on exposing Labour’s 19th and 20th-century parochial simplicities in the face of massive global forces. Now a short but productive journey in Lincolnshire gives us a chance to explore the 21st-century failings of the State and its lazy wizard of Oz-like economics.
Somewhere between Louth and Lincoln in the UK, there is a field on the outskirts of a small town. A large Estate Agents board proclaims “development opportunity/shops/hotel/restaurant”. Nothing too sinister about this of course except that developments like the one proposed here are what has replaced a “real” economy of production, extraction and manufacture which used to support the financial and other sectors. The “productive” energy of the modern economy is the financial sector. The Tories claim that penalising the financial sector will reduce the number of “good jobs”. That may be true.
However if “good jobs” depend on financial engineering as opposed to real engineering then this might be a sacrifice worth making in the short to medium term. These are the kinds of discussions governments should be having with their people as whatever happens real people will be more affected than governments.
The economic model upon which our current ‘growth’ is based is a throwback to Blair and Brown in the UK and in the US the Clinton and “W” Bush years.
This economic model has been described as “post-neoclassical endogenous growth theory”. Essentially the government spends money to stimulate economic growth, investing in education, the public sector and infrastructure projects. To fund this programme governments borrow. To give its early political advocates credit they did believe it would stimulate economic growth. What they failed to grasp was the link between ‘growth’ and personal and government debt, and the global context within which all this borrowing was going on!
For desperate politicians who had collapsing ‘real’ economies, post-neoclassical endogenous growth theory offered the tonic the nation needed. The “cool Britannia” hubris was a reflection of nieve certainty this was the end of “boom and bust”.
America was ahead of the game on the same diet of debt based stimulation. Clinton and his economists also allowed such a poor framework of regulation, adopted in the UK that banks were printing millions of dollars to lend to subprime borrowers who were like an x-factor wannabe convinced they were millionaires in the making. All it needed was a lot of borrowed cash plus that blend of skills that can only be honed eating in fast food outlets and dreaming in front of the mirror and everyone could be a winner! The bankers got the commission, as the whole system shuffled towards collapse.
We all know the fallout both sides of the Atlantic. The banking crisis of 207/8 and bank bailouts to keep the economy alive and supplied with debt or rather liquidity and demand. How did we all end up here?
In simplistic terms, the financial sector in the 1980’s went from being a petit-bourgeois servant of the economy to its very effective master and by the 2000’s was effectively in control of the global economy. The success of financial sector engineering has prevented the collapse of the economies of the Western world due to its ability to mix asset value inflation, debt and confidence in an ever-expanding and planet consuming vortex of consumption and waste.
This is the world we live in today, cars, jobs, houses, holidays, gadgets and consumables. This model forged on the 1980’s hasn’t changed at all. Governments borrow and it flows into the domestic and the global markets, students borrow and after a brief sojourn in the UK it flows into the global markets. People borrow and it flows into global markets. The bigger the government the more it can borrow hence the markets love of the EU and the market’s seduction of the “Remainers”. The EU is a big beast of borrowing.
So what has this to do with a field in Lincolnshire, this borrowing and spending, “Alice in Wonderland” economic model?
Well, our farmland will give up producing food value and be sold creating wealth as the farmer makes money from the land as opposed to off the land. This he or she will bank helping bank profitability. They will also spend it, perhaps abroad, maintaining a bit of the aggregate demand the system needs whilst also fuelling the global markets.
Before the farmers gain in banked, a bank will lend money to a borrower so they can buy and develop the land. This will allow a business to be constructed in bricks and mortar employing local tradespeople and service sector workers. The business will achieve profitability allowing debt to be serviced and taxation paid. Its existence in a small town may possibly force the closure of other similar businesses putting those properties back on the open market, so the financial sector can turn the crank again, releasing more equity perhaps. Debt from elsewhere in the economy (government borrowing transformed into public sector wages for example) will provide the demand for this business and its profits will be taxed to benefit the government.
What has gone on here? Well just like in the 2000’s nothing very much. Some confidence based financial jiggery-pokery has allowed some land to be equity released, making a farmer very rich. Debt is used to build and run a business employing people and debt makes it profitable. Oh and according to the Conservatives this process creates “high-quality jobs” which is probably correct in the financial and construction sectors. This whole process is going on all over Europe, America and the West in general and it has nothing to do with creating real economic value. We know it is a caricature, but we believe it is broadly right.
The question for us all is; where does this “economy” finally end and what will the world look like when it does end up somewhere? A planet exhausted by pollution and ecological abuse. A western population who have come to rely on ecological destruction to maintain a lifestyle of debt and alienation. Cultures of faith or ideological simplicity may be ready to step in and force the return of humankind to a sustainable but gender binary harsh and essentially by modern standards abusive existence. The goose and the golden egg spring to mind!
Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels were clear; however “unfair” Capitalism was, it liberated people from any servitude based on inherited status or gender (as opposed to class) and had the transformative capacity to deliver justice based on the proletarianisation of all workers whether male or female. Their view was that capitalism’s principles (we call them Contract, Choice and Consent) should become enshrined in the brief socialist phase of history, before being seared into a post-socialist society by the “dictatorship of the proletariat”. Liberation from exploitation, of whatever sort (status, gender or class) was Marx’s “riddle of history solved”.
Socialism is, therefore, a phase on the road to the full liberation of workers, not the end stop of that process. To work as it should, socialism needs a profitable capitalist system upon which to feed prior to the “dictatorship of the proletariat” emerging from the socialist state itself.
There are problems with this essentially 19th-century vision today, however, not least of which is the absence of real profitability generated by the exploitation of the worker within a powerful western capitalist economic system. A capitalist system that can be placed initially under the control of the state and then the working classes.
Today it is the western blue-collar workers who finance the Nation State its politicians, banks and well-paid hangers-on. It is equally true that working class people are also more than likely to be of this unlovely collection, cast out into a kind of economic oblivion brought about by global forces, in particular, relatively high wage levels and low western economic productivity.
The free market racketeer who is often passed off as a ‘capitalist’ offshores profits and gets the Chinese government to exploit its workers on their behalf by producing ‘consumables’ in planet-destroying quantities. Globally this is a racket, not a system. It bears little resemblance to Capitalism, it is gamed by powerful forces including candidates like corporations and global investment, as well as unlikely characters like the BBC and political parties.
Is there any good news in all this?
Well yes, there is excellent news. Firstly with capitalism lasting as long as it did, socialism and social liberalism was able to give “social character” to values based on the capitalist principles of Contract Choice and Consent. We now have solid humane and liberal values within a framework of law which protects groups that in primitive (pre-capitalist) societies are hounded, bullied, persecuted or killed. This includes apostates, dissenters, gay people and women seeking liberation from the tyranny inflicted on their gender by state, tribe or caste. Capitalism has left a legacy of justice even though it was unarguably a very unfair system. To fail to understand this distinction between justice and fairness leaves the “socialist” open to the kind of idiocy one observes within the “Marxist” Labour Party today.
Essentially the current iteration of Labour has a misguided view of capitalism’s legacy fetishised into ‘Tory’ hating. They fail to grasp that Western Capitalism is already dead replaced by global racketeering and that their parochial economic plans will be an insufferable burden on the working class for hundreds of years. They fail to understand the origins of liberal values within the capitalist system and so oblivious to real liberalism, hobnob with a collection of groups who like them might hate capitalism, but also hate its liberation of women and others too. They fail to grasp that control, exclusion and coercion are pre-capitalist principles and that by flirting with people who adopt them (and by adopting them themselves) they place the liberty of us all in jeopardy.
Our economic situation is precarious enough with the racketeering of the global elites undermining our Nation States all over the western world, but with Labour, not only do we as workers have that to contend with but the probability under a Labour Government of a slow and remorseless rolling back of our freedoms to Contract, Choose and Consent to take us back to an age of overt State control. Marx and Engles were wary of the State. As with their mangling of the “many and the few” once again it’s clear to us Labour’s ideas are not what Marx or Engels would have had in mind when crafting their beliefs. Consent is not safe with Labour and we should all worry.
The many not the few seems to have its origins in the 1848 Manifesto of the Communist Party and therefore gives some credibility to the claim that the most recent iteration of the Labour Party is Marxist. This suggestion is relished by the likes of John McDonnell who can’t escape from the exciting psychodrama of class war.
It was Karl Marx who scientifically explained the process by which all property is theft, he called it “exploitation”. Workers only had their labour power to sell. The class system required the costs of children to be covered by the worker and a surplus workforce existed which would suppress wages. Between living costs and competing with other workers, it was not possible to accumulate wealth. Together these two features of the worker’s life interfered with his desire to acquire “Property”. Workers wanted property and could, in theory, have it but the wages system made it almost impossible.
The property, of course, does not mean personal property (Hats, coats, furniture etc) but property that consists of valuable and tradable assets like buildings, stocks and shares and gold. The process of exploitation identified by Marx resulted in the capitalist accumulating property whilst the workers essentially paid for it. By buying labour power the capitalist owned the surplus once wages were paid and this surplus value became capital and therefore property. This is why capitalism is correctly identified as ‘unfair’ or exploitative.
Now in Marxian terms, the “many” would be the army of workers all of whom collectively were creating the surplus value necessary to provide the capitalist with his property. The few would be the capitalists who were benefitting from this “rigged” system as John Mc Donnell puts it. It’s not so much rigged… It just is what it is!
Others who benefitted from this system would be the army of bankers, politicians and lawyers and other Pettit bourgeoisie who were able to gain payment from capitalists by reinforcing the expectations and interests of the system, courts upholding property rights for example. Upholding the interests of capital against the interests of workers.
Capitalism is inherently unfair and socialism was seen by many as the brief collective action necessary to enable the worker to claw back a greater slice of the product of his or her labour power. So far so good. A coherent idea framed within the context of the mid 19th century.
From the 1900’s onwards the march of socialism began to address some of the unfairness within the capitalist system. By the end of WWII it was possible to envisage a “socialist state”. A landslide Labour victory after WWII resulted in the nation-state having the power to collectively redistribute the surplus value hitherto appropriated by capitalists, but this time in favour of everyone. The welfare state was born and there was a wealth re-distributive programme and Nationalisations.
This trajectory from 1848 to about 1948 delivered socialism or as near as damn it and thus, in theory, liberated the workers from “exploitation” by capitalists.
To be fair to capitalism the economic principles underpinning it which we at Blue Revolution simply describe as “Contract, Choice and Consent” have not only endured over the last hundred years they have taken on a “social character”. So we now enjoy these principles as a matter of routine in all aspects of our lives. In this respect, the efforts of the Suffragettes, Labour Party and the more recent coalition and Conservative governments have achieved excellent results promoting enhanced rights for women and a huge number of previously discriminated against minorities.
Unlike social progressiveness, however, the economic unfairness inherent within the capitalist system was not really addressed by the post-war Labour and subsequent governments. Indeed the failed efforts of Labour to deliver for the working class needs some analysis because “socialism” did not “liberate” workers in any economic sense.
By the mid-1990’s the Labour Party’s appetite to deliver socialism was in full retreat. Unless one understood what was going on one would be forgiven for thinking “capital” had won. This is still the narrative of right-wing publications and those quick to look to the failure of the old USSR, but it is not so!
Capitalism had in the West succumbed to its inevitable destiny of collapse by around the mid-1980’s. The racketeering free market was engineered by governments and banks to keeps its corpse twitching on the slab for as long as possible. Put simply capitalisms failure was because “surplus value” the holy grail of capitalism, socialism and beyond, was in mature western capitalist economies, non-existent and workers were now under the direct or indirect pay of the government and taxpayer who had no surplus value to work with, just debt.
In the period after WII state industries struggled and then failed to deliver surplus value to the nation, and in too many cases, the nation was subsidising the nationalised worker. This is not how the process is supposed to work. From Steel Yards to Coal Mines the workers were effectively taking on the taxpayer in industrial disputes and demanding a higher slice of taxpayer subsidy. This was the case with all the industrial monopolies and some of the utilities. This was the precursor to the “Thatcher” reforms and privatisations. Even Marx recognised that the rapid growth of capital was an essential element of the liberation of the worker. But by the 1970’s that capital growth based on surplus value was in reverse.
There are two possible theories why no surplus value was created. One is that the workers in failing to identify the nation as having the ownership of capital took on the “management” as surrogate “capitalists” and destroyed their and our nations industrial base. An alternative and the one favoured by us at Blue Revolution is that Western capitalism, even state capitalism in the form of nationalised industries, were by the 1970’s unprofitable and doomed to failure and eventual closure due to global economic factors and in particular wage and pension costs.
Western industrial workers were too expensive to employ and pension. Working classes elsewhere in the world could make the stuff the West needed and the “surplus value” would come by the interplay of global capital and global labour. This phase is our modern economic history saw ‘expensive’ workers being cast aside in favour of Chinese employees and others. Workers saw industries shipped abroad in crates and their children, intended to replace them in the labour market, pushed out onto a diet of welfare and healthcare. The State in the form of the taxpayer picked up the tab. The ghastly word ‘underclass” fails to capture the reality of these people as victims of the failure of domestic capitalism and socialism to deal with global conditions. And the 1970’s model won’t work this time either.
It is difficult to see how Labour will sort this issue out with its programme of nationalisations and debt. The whole world economy has become a machine for papering over the cracks of the failure of Western capitalism to recover profitability sufficient to pay for its State social and other obligations. It now costs the nations of the West trillions to make it look like capitalism still works here.
The substitute for western capitalism the “free-market” system requires state expenditure and obscene levels of personal indebtedness to maintain aggregate demand for products made elsewhere. Labour will sadly add to the toxic mix of debt and declining productivity with their parochial economic policies which can’t address significant global factors and would leave workers outside their financial comfort zone. This isn’t a thumbs up for Remain either, only Brexit gives the freedom to escape debt.
So back to the original point above. Who are the many and who are the few? Sadly within the current economic paradigm just as in the 1970’s the many will be the hard-pressed indebted taxpayers and the few the state political and economic elites and hangers-on. Not quite what Marx and Engles had in mind! They saw socialism and its aftermath as beneficiaries of global capital not sadly inheritors of the national debt!
We have for a long time taken the view that the western world is promoting the most immoral economic system since the feudal system. The only difference now is that we still have principles underpinning our freedoms which were brought into existence by capitalism, such as choice and consent. We believe in the absence of proper capitalism, these are now under threat.
A disappointing obsession with making money by “free-marketeers” has undermined the western working class. Exporting jobs to China, for example, or uncontrolled inward migration to do low skill work. It has turned our western working class into first, second and third generation unemployed and once again defined them by fixed social position and their gender as in the days before industry proletarianised them into a class. The term underclass is applied unfairly to these people, victims of a broken system. Only welfare keeps body and soul together but it is heavily gendered with having babies an attractive lifestyle choice thus limiting girls economic opportunities.
At the same time as work is going elsewhere, there is migration from areas unfamiliar with capitalism’s principles and thus hostile to gay and women’s rights and with a pre-industrial, irrational propensity to rage. Large groups enter Europe from North Africa and challenge the rights of western working and middle-class people who whilst in employment are being systematically pauperised (but that is an issue for another post).
It’s as though the political elite are giving with one hand and undermining with the other. This system of creating and then managing the effects of all this migration and economic change requires massive budget deficits by government and ratcheting debt but its bi-product is that it keeps the ex-workers out of the economy, creates division (note division not violence) on the streets and via gov’t debt allows the whole financial ballyhoo to run for another decade or two. Top jobs and Gov’t contracts funded from taxation with the odd taxpayer-funded bailout in the middle.
Being junkies for money and with no “capital” to trade the financial elite have to find a ready source of wealth from somewhere. Where can such sums come from? Well, politicians running bankrupt states and with taxpayers on hand to pick up the bill.
The issues that no one is prepared to confront is that the global economy is simply being ‘gamed’ to keep our kleptocrats in a style of living to which they have become accustomed, we don’t matter. The system needs to change!
So until it changes our governments will QE, borrow and spend and run ever-increasing budget deficits. All this money slops one way or another into the global economy and makes the financial elite rich, and we all believe it has to be this way.
The solution is complex…..but who is prepared to start the conversation. As in all revolutionary periods, the State is undermining the nation, and the EU its nations.
One of the problems of the modern world is that there is too much emphasis on each of us getting our own way; having what we want; being stimulated for a short time with for example drink, drugs or sex. Such personal preoccupations and obsessions can and do lead to cruelty because we sometimes find we get less than we think we deserve and we can behave cruelly and get away with it because cruelty can be and often is under the radar of the law and decades ago we mothballed our collective moral radar in the drive for inclusivity, making previously immoral behaviours, acceptable. This in itself was a good thing but to hold us together as a society we need some moral principles to avoid social incoherence and a plethora of competing moralities. We will examine how economic determinism can provide a legitimate moral framework that can apply evenhandedly around the planet. To bring life to our ideas we will focus on what we believe to be the Western words seven deadly sins. We begin with cruelty.
The sort of cruelty seen most often but not exclusively is within families or other close-knit groups. Cruelty has to have an element of viciousness or vindictiveness about it as the perpetrators aim is to cause hurt to another as a response to their own error of judgement in getting into a situation they no longer value respect or like.
We rush into ill-considered relationships driven by our urge to enjoy the stimulation and dream-like effects of sexual activity. We don’t stop ourselves from this headlong rush to get “intimate” and indeed there are people who see little harm in promiscuity and “pop up relationships” like you can dial up on Tinder or Grindr.
However the prevalence of promiscuity reflects two fundamental issues closely linked to cruelty; the extent to which people throw away something which should be special; the company of a partner and friend whom they wish to love and cherish, and from whom they should expect the same; and the lack of any consideration about whether any new relationship has long-term social or economic value. This is where materialism comes in. It is always necessary to consider the wider economic implications of especially a free choice.
By the time people realise their mistake there may be children and responsibility plus the boredom of a relationship that has “intimacy” but one neither respects or loves. This is the environment within which cruelty breeds.
It is manifest in a number of acts some easily understood such as adultery, all the way down to causing someone to worry (staying out later than agreed and not returning concerned calls), words of indifference “oh do what you want”, words of irritation “oh go away” to words designed to cause harm “you are stupid/ugly/useless”. These casual acts of cruelty harm the recipients emotionally and ultimately are a sign that the perpetrator and victim have made poor life choices. Often the perpetrator is unprepared to take responsibility for their behaviour. Grinding low-level cruelty causes depression and suicide drug and alcohol misuse.
The proliferation of pornographic material is to meet the needs of men and women trapped into unsatisfactory relationships yet preoccupied with sex. Its overt use can be an act of cruelty itself. Its existence reflects a market driven by short-term socially and economically shallow obsessions with the here and now.
At its most extreme cruelty is domestic violence and child abuse, seen in all too many households. This is the reason that in the western world cruelty is one of the most prevalent of our modern seven deadly sins.
To avoid committing this common modern sin we need to return to a way of life that requires us to consider relationships carefully and avoid getting trapped into situations where cruelty is used as a means of feeling better about ourselves as we cope within a self-inflicted dire situation.With freedom comes personal responsibility, you can blame no one else.
The Western world has since the eighteenth century championed the three principles of Consent, Choice and Contract as a means of protecting the individual in business. These bourgeois legal and economic principles have over the years taken on a social character so we use them in life, in general. We need to observe them as secular moral principles and use them wisely in all our dealings with each other. If we don’t there is a risk that we will leave ourselves open to the claim that we should have morals imposed upon us by government diktat or religious uprising, because without them we simply behave with animal-like cruelty.
Contract, choice and consent when deployed thoughtfully and particularly in all potentially intimate scenarios will provide a framework for respecting others, deter rash behaviour and prevent harm. We have much to gain by re familiarising ourselves with three of the principles of the 17th-century bourgeois revolution.
This is what we are going to say.
Boston like Britain needs to escape the clutches of the party system, where parties switch between “administration” or “opposition” with no workable opinion in the middle. At Blue Revolution we believe our elected members would speak only for you and you should vote for them, not the party they serve or, the party that serves them.
How many times have we as voters seen politicians “tow the party line” against the interests of ordinary people. Nationally, our entry into the EU, tuition fees, the outsourcing of services, the use of debt to maintain services and the exporting of jobs are classic examples of political actions linked to vested interests. Locally we have poor public services, litter-strewn streets and rural isolation. This type of politics happens because people did not have enough of a say in how policy is formed and delivered. Parties we are told know better……we believe that is utter rubbish.
At Blue Revolution, we believe that your problems are our problems. We will be similar in our experiences of life our modest ambitions and frustrations, so we can represent you better than someone putting their party before you. As they do……it’s all anger from the left and inaction from the right!
Please support your Blue Revolution candidate.
Published by Mike Gilbert on behalf of Blue Revolution both of 22 Tower Street Boston PE21 8RX
We at Blue Revolution direct this post to everyone who without modern rights would be subject to discrimination, basically everyone who is not a heterosexual male. This anthropological trope goes back to tribal times. Women had women’s roles and men there role. Homosexuality was a threat to the tribe in numerous ways so punishment for this “difference” was harsh. Adultery likewise. As humankind began to evolve via technologies like farming, maintenance of this primitive “status quo” became a challenge taken up by Leading men for example kings. Since our earliest times, there has been a tension between those demanding economic and social change and those attempting to preserve the status quo.
From biblical times to the late 16th Century little in the known world changed. What had always been wrong continued to be wrong. What needed to continue, continued. The wealth created by the economic activity from Bible times to the 16th century found its way into the hands of an elite. The gender discrimination first practised in tribal times was still found in what has become known as the feudal world. There was no impetus to change this because the world still needed this difference.
Gender difference, prohibitions against “choice” and “consent” and an absence of any “rights” not sanctioned by an overlord was a reality for everyone. However, for women, the first form of fascism was mans’ dominion over them and until comparatively recently all cultures accepted it.
Whilst the wars during this long millennial period were about territory and faith there was little difference in the defined role of the vanquished men and women. What we would describe today as discrimination flourished.
For everyone, men and women there was no Contract, Choice or Consent. This arrived in the late 17th early 18th century when things slowly start to change. Commerce needed the freedom to trade on agreed terms upheld by law and eventually, the old order yielded to new ways of doing the nation’s business. This development can’t be underestimated. Whilst the old tribal distinctions prevailed between men and women, in a legal sense these new principles of contract, choice and consent could in theory at least apply to women too. Man’s 10,000 year dominion over womenkind was for the first time weakened by the birth of capitalism. The history since the 18th century has been the history of an economic model, capitalism, delivering abundant wealth with associated inequality but paying for positive social change most often with a big poke from a progressive government.
The left would never admit to it but the rights and freedoms all minorities enjoy whether they are women, gay, queer or whatever, they enjoy because they are formed from economic rules that have over 200 years acquired a social character. Marx was the first to recognise this process. No one in the West seriously questions these social rights to contract freely, consent to what happens to you and to choose your lifestyle. However, they may be under threat, and not only because capitalism has morphed into a dark shadow self..the crony controlled “free market”.
Our ignorance of where our rights come from plus from the Left-wing an open and vitriolic hatred of capitalism and the free market threatens capitalisms enduring legacy of rights. It also threatens the existence of other benefits that accompany them such as our democratic freedoms of conscience and speech. The challenge is, of course, made more acute because capitalism as it was understood when it was forging our rights, no longer exists. It has been replaced by a crony “capitalist” free market economy which has seen employment exported east and low paid workers coming west. There are legitimate reasons to dislike the free market but abolishing economic freedom and replacing it with government ownership will not protect rights. As in the 1970’s it will turn workers against taxpayers!
This newly emboldened orthodox Left wing in the UK is starting to erode freedom of conscience and speech within the Labour Party. This arises because they don’t understand why legal principles like contract, choice and consent are essential to maintaining a fair and free society for everyone. Look at countries that have not socialised these economic freedoms and you still find discrimination ie certain parts of Africa. Look at countries who have never had to accept these principles and you have a tyranny ie Saudi Arabia or Afghanistan.
If you have state involvement in the economy as we have today it is important that the economy is as free as possible. The importance of economic freedom in legitimising and maintaining social freedoms can’t be underestimated protecting things like gender rights is a function of a free society based on a free economy.
The orthodox Left has failed to grasp that whilst economic freedom is bourgeois it must be maintained as it underpins all anti-discrimination policy. This is because people essentially workers or consumers and are therefore able to exercise the same rights whoever they are. The Left’s failure to grasp this makes them fellow travellers with those who oppress others and makes them, and those who support them, a potential threat to our free safe society where everyone now has the same slate of rights.
If the Left pursue their 19th-century agenda they will succeed only in throwing the equality baby out with the bourgeois bath water!
Sadly the world is a bit of a mess. Yes people are getting rich and some people are getting jobs but the elephant in the room is that too many of those jobs are based directly or indirectly on debt and too few people are the recipients of the debt once it has been transformed into income by the state or banking system, so only a few, including politicians get rich.
Bonuses to house builders, EU bureaucrats Vice Chancellors of British Universities and state employees on over £100K per year all have a stake in taxpayer-funded debt. QE and the issuing of government Bonds assist the profitability of the banking system. No one is going to challenge the status quo when the status quo, the taxpayer-funded global debt model, is so lucrative to our “elite”.
What is called “capitalism” today owes more to debt than capital (capital is economic value stolen from workers by capitalist’s, getting workers into debt to pay “capitalists” is not capitalism) but the elite doesn’t want anyone to know that.
Without the West’s governments taking tax from and thus indebting the poor taxpayer for centuries the system would have collapsed about a decade ago. The 2007/8 banking crisis was the most recent iteration of capitalisms terminal illness. Others collapses have been prevented by war or re-engineering the system as happened in the 1980’s.
The problem is that when the 1980’s collapse began the world was global so the Elite could export expensive work to China making the maximum profit from low production costs and stable sale prices at home. As prices stayed stable so inflation was stable but work was becoming a low skill and low pay issue so families needed subsidy and that comes from taxpayers too. So the bottom end of the economy is being subsidised and the elite’s and bankers are being continually bailed out as well.
Initially, in 07/08 the bankers had to be bailed out…the systems death throes would have had a devastating social as well as catastrophic economic impact so immediate collapse had to be avoided. However rather than have a revolutionary overhaul of the whole system and staunch the excessive wealth and waste inherent within the elite’s crony economy, the state not only stepped in to stop the collapse, it continues to subsidize the whole “capitalist” system (banking, State and consumption). There is no one who is going to come forward to change this unless a quiet ballot based revolution takes place and those who can live on a realistic wage start to re-engineer the whole system for the benefit of everyone. Corbyns tax and spend is grist to the mill for the global elite and Farage’s sucking up to the EU shows just how far the global elite will go to consolidate their advantage over the rest of us.
Blue Revolution is a quiet revolution, it’s a means by which ordinary people can get in on the political act by not having to go through the ideological indoctrination of the party system. The ballot really is the most power you have ever had let’s use our votes to make sure we help our Nation of workers survive our State by becoming Blue Revolutionaries.
Just like the four horsemen of the Apocalypse bring war, famine, conquest and death so we believe that there are now four markets of the apocalypse that will signal the end of the West’s global preeminence and with that usher in an era of well, famine, war conquest and death! Many will argue that the “global system” has created wealth in abundance and staved off starvation and numerous other miseries. However, we have wars raging in the Middle East and in the west, the poor are getting poorer and being blamed for it. So we will explore our four markets of the apocalypse and how they contribute to the world’s misery and death. They are in order of significance, for us they are, the global labour market, Bond markets, The financial market, and the housing market.
The working classes have forever been victims of a failing system. From peasants locked into servitude then thrown into urban factories in the 18th and 19th centuries to the workers who, thrown into unemployment were salvaged from destitution by two world wars. More recently the stupifying horror of “healthcare and welfare” as capitalism gave way to the racketeering of the “free market”. What underpins all of these scenarios is labour market failure. However whilst the more obvious iterations of labour market failure are easy to see, we have sleepwalked through the most recent failure believing all is Ok.
It all began in the late 1970’s when capitalism finally got to the point where it was producing too little value to support the social and political institutions it had supported since the 18th century. Institutions like the law, politics and local government, health and welfare. Capitalism was on the ropes and whether by intention or accident the labour market was seen as a major cause of the failure. The solution was overseen by passive and ignorant political class who watched firstly the shift of higher value production to China and the re-emergence of the western economy as a “consumer” economy and finally the remaining “onshore” low-value work taken by migrants from Mexico or Eastern Europe. An economy that consumes but does not produce value isn’t an economy at all…unless it’s a kind of Alice in Wonderland economy.
The combined effects of this crazy business model has been to turn UK workers into welfare and healthcare “paupers” unwanted by the global labour market but growing fat and docile at the State’s or rather taxpayers expense. In the US the businessmen and women get rich whilst the poor are not pauperised but ghettoised and become that useful social commodity a criminal. In the UK many unemployed are hidden by a therapeutic language of “needs” and inadequacy taking them out of the labour market altogether.
People, of course, do work but most private sector workers are in the “consumer” economy as shop, restaurant and hotel workers or the building industry. These workers rely on the other failing markets the housing, financial and Bond market to boost the economy in their sector, largely via debt.
The labour market has rendered British an US workers unemployable, created a docile underclass of ex-industrial and agricultural workers and their second and third generation offspring, whilst low production costs and “western” production values have made retail billionaires out of a whole unlovable bevvy of spivs and chancers. All this whilst the politicians have stood around in a kind of baffled paralysis and simply watched. In the US and the UK no one really “gets it” apart from the people getting rich from this crazy economic and social model. It makes publicly funded “chiefs” wealthy beyond their dreams, along with a whole swathe of what we call the publicsectoracy or the new taxpayer-funded elite. The workers currently have zombie jobs and low pay. Eventually with no jobs and no pay who knows what will happen.
The modern labour market has failed and is failing every time someone goes to work in the west and is paid with the proceeds of debt. When it finally crashes (because of the failure of our other markets) the crisis will render most westerners economically redundant with little economic or social value. This will usher in a feudal-like system run by the caring right and the psychotic left. Back to the future indeed.
Whilst the labour market has failed in response to the latest iteration of the failure of western capitalism, governments or rather the State had to undertake business as usual and that meant paying themselves and their retinue wages initially set at the benchmark of what the capitalist or bourgeois system would tolerate. Now, however, shorn of the need to concern themselves with actual money taken from rich bourgeois taxpayers who had political clout the state borrows by issuing Bonds and defers the cost of running the State to the next generation. The baby boomers are really looking after themselves as only the 1960’s and 1970’s entitled generation know how to. Corbyn and a youthquake….get real! He is looking after the boomers first and foremost.
The problem with Bonds, like much else we call economics, is that they are debt and debt isn’t repaid or serviced by the state but by taxpayers and taxpayers who are in the long-term often not even born when the Bond is issued. Just as the working classes were sailed down the river by the politicians’ stewardship of the labour market the same is now going on with Bonds. A brief history of the Bond illustrates the point. Bonds were first issued in the 18th century to pay for military excursions and wars. In normal times the economy paid for the State but to prosecute war the State borrowed from the economy. Today the State buys breakfast with Bonds…..and that is good for no one and certainly not the working classes who, already on the road to pauperdom, will be paying for the State elite’s breakfasts for years to come. This market will fail, interest rates and inflation will once normal economics returns turn British and US Bonds into junk. The State won’t be able to borrow. How will the elite cope….? At the expense of the unemployed workers, of course. Ex-workers newly pauperised and docile, obsessed with identity and social media the new elite will simply take control. “fake news” is part of that process, it makes people trust their elite and not trust themselves.
The financial market is interesting. Back in the days of proper (albeit conflicted and exploitative) capitalism, the financial markets served the capitalist economy…Bankers were to coin a phrase petit bourgeois. The bankers served the interests of “capital”, capital owned by “capitalists”. The growth in the economy was driven by the profitability of the capitalist system, banking and the other bourgeois institutions like the law and parliament served the needs of the capitalist. However, we have explained that capitalism has failed having died sometime in the 1970’s and in its death throes it was unable to meet the demands of the State that had become bloated on it’s back. This was one of those threshold moments when international relations deteriorate, groups are blamed for the systems failure and wars start. Unfortunately, in spite of Bush and Blairs attempt to open up a lucrative war or two in the Middle East, war is seen as too costly, counterproductive and more significantly expensive. Bonds are no longer issued for paying for war but welfare, healthcare and wages.
In the absence of a real economy after the 1980’s creating value from the combining of factors of production (Land, Labour and Capital) and with capitalism dead in the western waters and wars and reconstruction no longer an option there was an ideological hiatus. What was going to happen?….well what happened is what is happening now!
The financial sector….for to hundred years the Aunt Sally of the real capitalist system became the “economic system”, in the newly minted and newly branded free market. With the opportunity to offshore work to places like China and bring migrants in to do low-value jobs at home, low production costs and high production values created huge profits for the racketeers, whilst the drive towards home ownership shifted public value into the hands of the private individual who could then borrow secured loans as their asset, their home, rose in value. This was driven by more borrowing, migration, artificial demand from broken homes and students.
The financial sector has essentially “equity released” Great Britain to indebted Britons or wealthy global speculators. Whilst the banking system has many tentacles, for us the most lucrative is the property backed lending spree that has kept the low-cost high-profit free market going. The whole thing is fine until the asset values plunge and consumption or spending power shrinks. This will happen, it happened in 2007/8 and nothing has changed except governments are now even more indebted and technically bankrupt than they were after 2007/8.
The final market which as we have hinted at above feeds the financial market with “value” is the housing market. This market is unreconstructed and depends on the levels of supply being outstripped by levels of demand. Levels of demand are manipulated by a number of factors including selling the homeownership ideal but at a more practical level migration, divorce and family reconstruction, as well as student rentals all, add to demand. This demand inflates prices whilst builders “Feed in” just enough property so as to ensure gentle inflation in the market creating “lending and borrowing opportunities” for the financial sector. This model of housing ignores some obvious flaws namely that housing should serve the needs of the economy, it can’t be a major part of the economy by providing the “value” base for secured lending.
Modern housing does not reflect the needs of the modern worker, it is based on the 1950’s mythical nuclear family. A home that has two or three bedrooms and costs £200,000 is not achievable nor for many modern workers desirable. The modern worker should be global, childless until a child is affordable, flexible and have accommodation which does not soak up a huge amount of earnings.The modern housing market is a Baby Boomer confection that is manipulated and engineered to produce monetary value to support the “free market”, the building industry and its CEO’s and the government.
To keep this important market going we need to inflate property prices, build on greenfield sites break up families and keep students and migrants driving people out of the town and city centres to the new out of town estates. This market will collapse and will take the financial market with it.
The four markets of the apocalypse are either failed but “zombied” like the labour or Bond markets or they are the great hope of the system but overvalued and indebted with high asset values feeding the consumer based economy. Looking at all four markets it is difficult to work out what to do. It’s like being in quicksand. don’t move or do move…..you are still going to drown!