My ninth lecture: labour and capital, talking about the distribution of newly created wealth, the way to conceptualise this, the political stances deriving from this and the light these shed on ethical perspectives about economic and financial issues.
Translated from the French by Tim Gupwell.
In our capitalist system, the « advances » which are consented to by some, the holders of capital or « capitalists », in order to render a production process possible or to allow a consumer to consume are remunerated by interest payments. In my book Le prix (2010), I showed, using examples of “separate systems” in Africa or in Europe, how this system of interest must have appeared: interest being originally conceived as part of a newly created wealth, attributed to one of the partners who had contributed to its creation. The enduring … Read the rest
An English translation of my post QUESTIONS À RÉSOUDRE (I) TOUS CEUX QUI SONT RÉMUNÉRÉS LE MÉRITENT-ILS VRAIMENT?
There is a question that neeeds to be answered at all costs; 19th century thinkers have devoted much thought towards its solution. Here it is: when we consider rent obtained by a landowner or by the owner of mineral ore extracted from the ground, interest obtained by the owner of capital also known as capitalist, the profit gained by an industrialist or entrepreneur, and the wages paid to a worker, is one of these incomes unjustified and thereby undeserved?
The only point … Read the rest
It Is Time to Restructure Capitalism
Is there anything more depressing than the spectacle of the short-term remedies that are being applied at present with a view to saving the capitalist system, in the absence of determination to do what would actually be necessary to achieve that objective?
Look at what is happening in Greece, where the Troika (the European Union, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund) is endeavouring to impose on the Greek Government measures … Read the rest
I was asked to make the introductory speech at the Conference “Heurs et malheurs du capitalisme”, which took place at Université Blaise Pascal in Clermont-Ferrand on February 4th. Bénédicte has been so kind as to translate the written version of my speech.
Capitalism’s highs and lows? When we talk these days of its highs, it is because its lows are so much – uncomfortably much – on our mind.
But what exactly do we mean when we refer to “capitalism”? Many authors merely consider that capitalism is “any aspect of our current economic system”. For example, they mistake capitalism for … Read the rest
A couple of weeks ago, my new book Le capitalisme à l’agonie came out, published by Fayard in Paris. Bénédicte has been so kind as to translate the summary I wrote for its backcover.
Le capitalisme à l’agonie (Fayard 2011). Summary
In 1989, at the fall of the Berlin Wall, capitalism was triumphant. Deprived by now of any enemies, it had ceased to be just one economic system among others to become the single form under which an economic system could possibly exist. In 2007, a mere eighteen years later, that is for all purposes simultaneously on the timescale of … Read the rest