a Truth missed by everyone

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a Truth missed by everyone

Postby Peter Kropotkin » Wed May 12, 2021 5:16 pm

for example, Marx perhaps the single best critic of capitalism, ever....
he missed the point/truth of the 20th century....

for Marx lived from 1818-1883...and from his perspective, economics
had two basic parts... those who own the means of production and those
who work in those means of production.... now for example, before the
industrial revolution, the goods in people houses, were made by the people
themselves or by craftsmen... who hand made products like dressers
and tables... go to a museum that has old style furniture.. beautiful works
of ART... meant to last and many have for centuries...handmade taking years
to build and meant to last a long, long time....

owners of the means of production would mass produce those dressers,
often cheaply made and takes about an hour to make...using the assembly
line of means of production.......this would drop the price of such items to
become available to everyone.. think about the house of an average person in
say, 1750... you might have different bedrooms, maybe, and the furniture
may be one master bed, a table, very modest handmade chairs, the idea
of the house that we think of, didn't come into existence until the 19 century, say from
1800-1899....and it was only possible with the mass production furniture that
came with the industrial revolution...

the second part of the equation for Marx was those who made the mass marketed
furniture.. the workers.. who now survived by selling their, basically bodies,
to the owners of the mass production factories.. recall that there was no protection
of workers until the 20th century..so those workers had no protection.. they worked
14 or 15 hours a day, 6 days a week if they were lucky, no vacations paid or otherwise,
if they were hurt, they were simply tossed off the job with no benefits of any kind...

and if you read Marx, this is what he was fighting for.. worker protections...
the crap we take for granted....8 hour days, 5 days a week, paid vacations,
health benefits.. protection from injuries and death..... this is the great
Marxist/ Socialist program... to protect workers from the owners of the means
of production...as important as this is, this isn't the great truth we see today....

Marx missed the third step or the third leg of economics and today, we still
miss it....what is this great truth?

you have the owners of the means of production, you have the workers
but the third step is the means of consumption...
we are a consumer society, not a society of production or workers slaving to
kill ourselves making products, (although that is true)
no, we are a society of consumption....

the third battle isn't against the owners of the means of production,
the factory owners for example, because they don't count for much in
our modern day and age... but think about what does matter?

consumption....our society is geared toward consumption....
everything is about consumption... TV, couches, cars, cereal,
tv dinners, movies, the computers..more on that one later...

the question today is not about the making of a computer or a car,
we have dozens of those, no, the question of the computer is the content
of the computer...the stuff we consume... this consumption is the battle
for today... not as Marx thought the owners of the means of production,
but in today's world, it is the owners of the means of consumption...
the makers of the things we consume... movies, plays, music, tv shows,
the content of what is on our computer.... the media.. the media
in the United States, that content that we consume... of all media in America,
is owned by 5 companies...basically 5 companies decides what music
is produced, what tv shows are made, what movies are made,
the content of our computers, the books we read and the DVD's on our shelfs...

whereas Marx was concerned with who owned the factories, we should be
concerned with who owned the means of consumption....

the problem of the twentieth and 21 century is not of production but
of consumption....this is how our times is different then Marx... his concern
was the correct concern at that time, but it doesn't answer the current question
of consumption....

the bedrock of modern civilization and modern society/ culture is
who owns the means of consumption? which is the third leg of economics,
we have production, workers and consumption...

you want to bring down society today? work on the consumption aspect of it....
who cares how many computers or cars or tv shows you "build", if no one buys or watches
or uses them......the modern world is built on this consumption... and then this
helps build the cycle of waste and destruction that the modern/capitalist world brings
about... the destruction of forests and the sea and air are all victims of the vast
consumerism that exists in the world today... the pollution of the earth arises
from the consumerism of today....

to save the planet means to reduce, limit or end the vast consumer society that
exists around the world...that is the battle today... it may change tomorrow...
and that is one of the things that Marxism failed at, adapting or changing to
adapt to the ever changings conditions of the environment...

the old world was about the means of production, the new world is about

Peter Kropotkin
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