On The Work-Standard’s “Modes of Production”

To begin, I am sharing two relevant posts that I had made last year. The posts in question are the “Six Alls of Total Mobilization of Production for Profit” and “Quality of Arbeit vs. Quantity of Kapital.” Some of my conclusions here are paralleled in those posts. Anyone interested in learning more about what I had to write on the topic of Modes of Production should read them.

Unlike the definition from Marx and Engels, when I used the term “Mode of Production” in The Work-Standard (2nd Ed.), I am relying on a distinct definition in a very specific context. As I had articulated it, a Mode of Production is referring to the everyday political, social, cultural and legal practices that intersect with the economic and financial activities that occur within an entire nation. The economic and financial systems do not exist inside a closed vacuum; they are both constantly participating in the National Essence of that nation. Thanks to technological developments since the early 20th century, these interactions have become so mundane that most people do not pay too much attention to the implications, including how the Individual’s economic life influences their political decision-making and their personal social life. What the Mode of Production concept from The Work-Standard sought to address is an important issue in understanding the multiplicities of different national economies that emerged throughout the previous century.

Consider some of my more recent posts on The Fourth Estate, namely the comments which I had posted to the ARPLAN Blog. Of particular interest in some of Bogumil’s posts is a point of contention held among the various Fascist Corporatists, Prussian State Socialists, National Pan-Germanic Socialists, National Bolsheviks, Marxist-Leninists and others. In essence, which of the three is capable of presenting a formidable alternative to Neoliberalism, Corporatism, Socialism, or Syndicalism? Is it better to have the national economy be governed by work councils, national corporations, or unionized syndicates?

Just try to imagine for a moment an alternate world order where all of the national economies are Planned/Command Economies and there are no Market/Mixed Economies to speak of. These Planned/Command Economies cover a broad spectrum to encompass different variations of Socialism and Corporatism, with enough left for the occasional strain of Syndicalism.  What made Syndicalism so different from Socialism and Corporatism was that it envisaged economic life being organized around national syndicates of labor unions that were in turn governed by the State. Whichever one happens to be the case the State is still going to be administering them and controlling the national economy regardless.  

This brings me back to the terminology behind Mode of Production because I mentioned the existences of three different Modes of Production. Those were Production for Profit, Production for Utility, and Production for Dasein, the latter of which will finally become possible once under the Work-Standard. Socialism, Corporatism and Syndicalism have each demonstrated their capabilities of existing under all three Modes of Production at differing levels of effectiveness and compatibility with the Work-Standard.

  • In Production for Profit, there is Social-Democracy and Fabianism, which were attempts to apply Socialistic ideas to a Liberal Capitalist Parliamentarian Democratic framework. For Corporatism, there is Tripartism and Red Toryism. It is possible for a Social-Democracy to exhibit Corporatist characteristics, just as it is also possible for Red Toryism to adopt Socialistic traits.   
  • In Production for Utility, the Mode of Production that a lot of non-Liberal Capitalist nations found themselves in, Socialism and Corporatism had to develop state and social enterprises according to their Use Value or Marginal Utility (the usefulness or uselessness of different economic and financial activities). It is here that we find notable instances like Corporatists allowing for the existence of Private Property-as-Wealth or Socialists abandoning Fixed Exchange Rates.

These exceptions were deliberately tolerated because the Corporatists and Socialists involved had yet to fully abandon Production for Profit. Thus, instead of making a complete transition to the third Mode of Production, Production for Dasein, they remained trapped within the Liberal Capitalists grasp. This also explains why the Liberal Capitalists can almost seamlessly fluctuate from Production for Profit to Production for Utility and back, a good example of which being the US under the Jeffersonian President Franklin Delano Roosevelt between 1933 and 1945.

The specifications of the three Modes of Production can extended to areas such as property laws, taxation laws, citizenship laws, educational laws, and governance structures. Due to the framework of economic policies under Liberal Capitalism, Production for Profit consistently had Byzantian taxation laws, well-defined delineations between Private and Common Properties-as-Wealth, deemphasized citizenship by delegitimizing the concept of national sovereignty, treated the value of education in terms of its Quantities of Kapital and Schuld, and favored unorganized bureaucracies. Production for Utility, on the other hand, involved making compromises in various places in order to properly govern the nation.

It is because of this need to treat Production for Utility as being interrelated with Production for Profit that any true opposition from Production for Dasein has to come from its ability to operate under an entirely different set of parameters and still be able to present serious resistance. If Socialism, Corporatism, and Syndicalism are each capable of existing under the first two Modes of Production, then they should all be able to exist within Production for Dasein under the Work-Standard. And the basis by which they do is tied to their ability to sustain themselves with Arbeit and Geld instead of Kapital and Schuld.

The decision-making process of economic policy in Production for Dasein will become fixated on the methodology provided by the Work-Standard.
Contrast that diagram with the limitations of Production for Profit and Production for Utility. In the case of the latter, Interest Rates may be removed, the Money Supply (Read: Quantity of Kapital) increased by the central bank, while taxation rates and government spending are higher to offset the costs of running a Planned/Command Economy.

The “Dasein Motive,” contrary to the Profit Motive, has more to do with the Intents behind why somebody might consider the economic activities of one Profession or Enterprise provide them with more Meaningful Work than those of another Profession or Enterprise. This in turn goes back to the Theory of Value that guides the Work-Standard, the “Reciprocal Theory of Value (RTV),” which first laid the foundational argument that any value-judgments can based upon the ‘Quality of Work’ that went into creating a single finished good or service, the priorities that compelled someone into thinking this economic action was more beneficial to them, and the intended aims behind why it had to be done. With RTV comes the “Work Theory of Money (WTM),” where it then becomes feasible to advocate for a different monetary system, a conception of Currency whose value is derived from that same ‘Quality of Work’ but on a national scale. A corresponding ‘Quality of Money’ that would allow us to make well-informed inferences and conclusions about why one Enterprise is capable of creating more Money with less Work than another or why certain Professions are more valuable than others by dint of their Authentic Dasein.        

If there was anything that Ernst Jünger had made in Der Arbeiter that can substantiate regarding these three Modes of Production, it was the fact that both Production for Profit and Production for Utility are Nihilistic insofar as they treated all economic activities as senseless and pointless, as sources of Meaningless Work for the sake of Kapital Accumulation. And it is because of that fact that economic planning under the Work-Standard had to account for the distinctions between Meaningful Work and Meaningless Work vis-à-vis the “Political Organization Problem.”      That is also why, in Production for Dasein, the real economic distinctions between Socialism, Corporatism and Syndicalism will have to be addressed in terms of Arbeit and Geld. What are the Explicit and Implicit Intents behind the Arbeit being contributed by the work councils, national corporations, and unionized syndicates? Does organizing the national economy in a particular manner provide everyone with Meaningful Work and a higher sense of Authentic Dasein? How does one go about understanding this in the theoretical context of RTV and WTM by extension?      



Categories: Financial Warfare

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