Zero Squared #108: The Subject of Capitalism

May 3rd, 2017 | By | Category: Articles, Zero Squared

Moishe Postone is a Western Marxist and a Professor of History at the University of Chicago and he is the author of the book Time, Labor and Social Domination a book that won the American Sociological Association’s prize in the theory. In this episode of Zero Squared, Postone discusses whether the working class is the true subject of capitalism and history, the particular particularity of today’s left, and the new Black Lives Matter visa card.

Angela Nagle’s book Kill All Normies is now available for pre-order through Amazon and to let you know that there will be a link to both the UK and US editions in the show notes.

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2 Comments to “Zero Squared #108: The Subject of Capitalism”

  1. Deucalion1627 says:

    This was a great episode Doug. Brilliant. It gets right to the heart of what I think the left has been struggling with since probably the death of Marx. Leftist whether they are reformists or revolutionary seem to simply want to take control of the state and manage capitalism in a seemingly more egalitarian way when what they really should be doing is create a new order to all together. To use an analogy, the radicals of the twentieth century were like slaves on a plantation. They hated being slaves and they hated being oppressed by the owner of the plantation. They wanted to be free but unfortunately their idea of how to achieve freedom was flawed. The way they thought they could become free was by overthrowing the head of the plantation and taking it over. Once they became the rulers of the plantation they somehow thought they could run the plantation and something, something, freedom. Once they got into power however they ended up just becoming the new slave masters. Why? Because they didn’t realize what their real enemy was. It wasn’t the plantation owner; it was the plantation itself. The very institution of the slave plantation is structured in such a way that it divides people into two classes; slaves and owners of said slaves. The way it’s structured determines the Kinds of social relations that would form between amongst the population. So the problem isn’t the jerk running the plantation; it’s the plantation itself. In order to change the social relations one would have to create a totally different sturcture altogether. One would have to create a new instituation; one that was structured in such a way that people could live as equals and not as masters and slaves. The goal of radicals isn’t to take over the plantation and run it democratically or collectively or whatever. The goal is to dismantle it and create something else entirely. Unfortunately it seems like the left just doesn’t get this and everyone seems to think so long as we get the right jack ass into power some how this plantation called capaitlism can be governed more justly. But this seems bogus especially with what I see is happening with the Trump administration. The idea that some one can truly control this system is plain wrong. If anything the system ends up simply controlling you as with the case with trump and the shinanigans playing out in the deep state. This also makes me cynical to the idea that things might’ve been different if Sanders were elected into office or even a full blown Marxist for that matter. We have to build something else. I know we can’t for the reasons you’ve elaborated on in previous episodes but at the very least we ought to get the hell away from thinking about taking power. Taking power of the capitalist state seems meaningless to me. We have to conciece of a world other than the one we have or were just going to going around and around on this crazy hamster wheel and repeat the same mistakes of the previous century over and over again.

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