Since my comments on ARPLAN appears to have not been approved, I will be discussing the ideas described therein in what was a two-part comment. The two-part comment, besides presenting a tenable case on Pan-Germanic Socialism’s Socialistic tendencies, also sought to discuss its significant with regard to today’s economic and financial climate and The Work-Standard (2nd Ed.). The recent ARPLAN post from last week was a compilation of five authors describing those Socialistic tendencies of Pan-Germanic Socialism from their own personal perspectives. Each one criticizes a known aspect of Liberal Capitalism, such as the “job market,” “predatory finance,” “free trade,” “financialization” and “marketization,” and “private property.” A recurring theme appears throughout their rhetoric and that was a criticism of what can and cannot be Kapital.
The Liberal Capitalist concept of Kapital tends to be more abstract than concrete. As I had pointed out in The Work-Standard, the broad definition of Kapital to Liberal Capitalists has included everything from the Arbeit that comes with the production of goods and services to the Geld being saved for future investment. As the authors of the five articles on the latest ARPLAN post pointed out, this notion that Kapital has dominion over Arbeit and Geld is so ridiculous that the need to create distinguishable characteristics became increasingly necessary.
The idea that Pan-Germanic Socialism proposed was the idea of splitting the Liberal Capitalist concept of Kapital into distinct forms. One form of Kapital is paired with Schuld, another leading straight to the entirely different cycle of Arbeit and Geld. The two terms were translated on ARPLAN as “Productive Kapital” and “Rapacious Kapital.”
- Productive Kapital corresponds to anything that, despite being coupled to Kapital and Schuld under Liberal Capitalism, can be reworked on behalf of Arbeit and Geld under the Work-Standard. This includes the extraction of natural resources into raw materials intended for the production of finished goods and their subsequent provision as services. Should a nation decide to peg its currency to the Work-Standard, the Productive Kapital disappears in the midst of Arbeit and Geld’s reappearance into the everyday activities of the national economy.
- Rapacious Kapital by contrast cannot be reconciled under the Work-Standard because it is so entangled into the affairs of financial markets, privatized commercial banks, and the Fractional-Reserve Banking System. When paired with Schuld, Rapacious Kapital is often created from the issuances of loans to borrowers who cannot otherwise afford to pay them back and will only become indebted to their lender. The inclusion of Interest can worsen matters for the borrower.
One does not need to look very far to understand the implications of trying to create two distinctions of Kapital and identifying them based on their ability to facilitate Arbeit and Geld. An economist might be inclined to identify “Productive Kapital” as industrial capitalism and “Rapacious Kapital” as finance capitalism. It is important conclusion because, in the other literature incorporated into the research material that helped conceptualize the Work-Standard, industrial capitalism has consistently helped laid the groundwork for Pure Socialism.
In industrial capitalism, we find the central government begin pursuing efforts to nationalize its largest manufacturing firms into State Enterprises, the socialization of the nation’s natural resources, and the devotion of State Revenue toward social spending such as healthcare and education. These policies come in the wake of growing concerns over the rise of cartels, trusts and monopolies within different Industries and Sectors of the national economy, pressuring the central government to act in the interests of the Totality.
Contrast this with financial capitalism, where the decision-making process is geared toward having the financial markets and commercial banks create greater Quantities of Kapital and Schuld from corporate takeovers, downsizing, offshoring, outsourcing, and the whole host of other problems associated with Neoliberalism. Under that arrangement, the Liberal Capitalists are given free rein over the national economy to pursue the highest Quantity of Kapital for the least Quantity of Schuld, often at the expense of the Totality. The Totality suffers because their central government has been rendered incapable of action, its policymaking instead devoted to furthering the ideological aims of the Liberal Capitalists (“the highest Quantity of Kapital for the least Quantity of Schuld”).
The arguments being posited in that ARPLAN post, while relatively new at the time those five articles were written, have become more common sentiments held by anyone who is not a Liberal Capitalist after 1945. Everyone that does not have a vested interest in any aspect of Neoliberalism will oppose finance capitalism in favor of industrial capitalism, regardless of whether they realize that the latter will help bring about Pure Socialism within their own nations. Seen in this light, it is understandable why there are those who, despite having no connections to Pan-Germanic Socialism whatsoever, have sought to further elaborate the idea of industrial capitalism and finance capitalism being locked in opposition.
A good example of where I have found somebody else making this connection from an entirely different angle was in the research of American economic Michael Hudson. Granted, I have known about Hudson’s work for years now, the most notable of which was his famous 1972 tome, Super Imperialism. His recent book from a few months back, The Destiny of Civilization: Finance Capitalism, Industrial Capitalism or Socialism, reminds me of the rhetoric from the five authors on the recent ARPLAN post.
The whole crux of Destiny of Civilization is basically what I had just outlined in reference to the most ARPLAN post, with Hudson developing his own conclusions for today’s world. In essence, the early 20th century saw Capitalism as an economic idea confronted with two paths. One path led straight to Pure Socialism, the other down to Neoliberalism. And as is known in economic history, the path to Neoliberalism saw the Western world embrace Globalization, Deindustrialization, uncontrolled Automation and the rise of the Knowledge Economy by placing excessive emphasis on higher education requirements for most Professions.
What Hudson saw, as the five men concluded in their respective articles in the ARPLAN post, is that the Western world has an ultimatum to make. The outcome of the Second World War has had little to no bearing, ensuring that this ultimatum remains valid in this century. Simply put, the so-called “Great Power Competition” of the Jeffersonians is a sign that the Liberal Capitalists face emerging threat to Neoliberalism’s hegemony. The usual players on the Eurasian landmass, Russia and China being the two most powerful, remain poised to challenge what Hudson himself referred to as “dollar hegemony.” Even though neither Russia nor China has anything in place to directly challenge the US Dollar, they are of course in the process of abandoning the US Dollar and compelling other nations allied with them to do the same.
In retrospect, the paths from a developing country under Liberal Capitalism can take are well-defined. The Work-Standard has also provided its own insight into distinguishing the two paths, albeit through its definitions and methodologies. For every path to Neoliberalism, there exist other paths that will take a developing country straight to Pure Socialism.