Theres no need for all this economic sadomasochism

The intellectual justification for austerity lies in ruins. It turns out that Harvard economists Carmen Reinhart and Ken Rogoff, who originally framed the argument that too high a “debt-to- GDP ratio” will always, necessarily, lead to economic contraction – and who had aggressively promoted it during Rogoff’s tenure as chief economist for the IMF –, had based their entire argu- ment on a spreadshe

Theresa May recites Labour’s lines, butdoesn’t mean a word of them

Everyone already knows how much of Theresa May’s platform, policies and even rhetoric are directly stolen from Ukip. Nigel Farage himself publicly pointed it out this Sunday: not only had May taken Ukip’s major policy issues (immigration, grammar schools, bashing EU bureaucrats), he said, “She is using exactly the same words and phrases that I have been using for 20 years.

To Have Is to Owe

For thousands of years, the struggle between rich and poor has largely taken the form of conflicts between creditors and debtors—of arguments about the rights and wrongs of interest payments, debt peonage, amnesty, repossession, restitution, the sequestering of sheep, the seiz- ing of vineyards, and the selling of debtors’ children into slavery.

To save the world, we’re going to have to stop working

Our society is addicted to work. If there’s anything left and right both seem to agree on, it’s that jobs are good. Everyone should have a job. Work is our badge of moral citizenship. We seem to have convinced ourselves as a society that anyone who isn’t working harder than they would like to be working, at something they don’t enjoy, is a bad, unworthy person.

Trump talks about wrapping up the imperial program

The new book The Utopia of Rules: On Technology, Stupidity, and the Secret Joys of Bureaucracy by David Graeber was published by Ad Marginem and will be available at the non/fiction book fair, which starts tomorrow, November 30.

Turning Modes of Production Inside Out

Or, Why Capitalism is a Transformation of Slavery

Abstract: Marxist theory has by now largely abandoned the (seriously flawed) notion of the ‘mode of production’, but doing so has only encouraged a trend to abandon much of what was radical about it and naturalize capitalist categories. This article argues a better conceived notion of a mode of production – one that recognizes the primacy of human production, and hence a more sophisticated notion

Value as the importance of actions.

The theory of value presented in the next essay was developed in the 1980s (largely by anthropologists in the University of Chicago) and ‘90s (largely by myself) so it occurred to me, this being a new millennium and all, it might be helpful to the reader to provide something of an update. Something to demonstrate how this rather abstract theory can be useful for something.

Value, politics and democracy in the United States

This article examines the role of values in the political discourse of the last decade in the US. It embarks from what many observers had described as a puzzle: the fact that significant parts of the American working class voted against their economic interests but in line with what they perceived to be their values.