Está en la página 1de 86


There is a gap between theory and praxis that only the Marxist
telos can reconcile criticisms of our strategic essentialism are
depoliticizing because our science of history is the only way to
push it forward. Only a politics that endorses violent class
conflict can awaken the masses and give them the theoretical
tools of their own liberation. Anything else keeps us stuck
playing language games.
Tumino 01 (Stephen Tumino, Really Hardcore Marxist, What is Orthodox Marxism
and Why it Matters Now More Than Ever Before, Red Critique vol. 1, wcp)
Without Revolutionary Theory There Can Be No Revolutionary Movement Orthodox Marxism has become a test-case of
the "radical" today. Yet, what passes for orthodoxy on the leftwhether like Smith and Zizek they claim to
support it, or, like Butler and Rorty they want to "achieve our country" by excluding it from "U.S. Intellectual life" ("On
Left Conservatism"), is

a parody of orthodoxy which hybridizes its central concepts and

renders them into flexodox simulations. Yet, even in its very textuality, however, the
orthodox is a resistance to the flexodox. Contrary to the common-sensical view of "orthodox" as
"traditional" or "conformist" "opinions," is its other meaning: orthodoxy not as flexodox "hybridity," but as "original"
"ideas." "Original," not in the sense of epistemic "event," "authorial" originality and so forth, but, as in chemistry, in its
opposition to "para," "meta," "post" and other ludic hybridities: thus "ortho"

as resistance to the
annotations that mystify the original ideas of Marxism and hybridize it for the "special
interests" of various groups. The "original" ideas of Marxism are inseparable from their
effect as "demystification" of ideologyfor example the deployment of "class" that allows
a demystification of daily life from the haze of consumption. Class is thus an "original
idea" of Marxism in the sense that it cuts through the hype of cultural agency
under capitalism and reveals how culture and consumption are tied to labor, the everyday
determined by the workday: how the amount of time workers spend engaging in surplus-labor determines the amount of
time they get for reproducing and cultivating their needs. Without

changing this division of labor social

change is impossible. Orthodoxy is a rejection of the ideological annotations: hence, on the one hand, the
resistance to orthodoxy as "rigid" and "dogmatic" "determinism," and, on the other, its hybridization by the flexodox as
the result of which it has become almost impossible today to read the original ideas of Marxism, such as "exploitation";
"surplus-value"; "class"; "class antagonism"; "class struggle"; "revolution"; "science" (i.e., objective knowledge); "ideology"
(as "false consciousness"). Yet,

it is these ideas alone that clarify the elemental truths

through which theory ceases to be a gray activism of tropes, desire and affect,
and becomes, instead, a red, revolutionary guide to praxis for a new society freed
from exploitation and injustice. Marx's original scientific discovery was his labor theory of value. Marx's labor
theory of value is an elemental truth of Orthodox Marxism that is rejected by the flexodox left as the central dogmatism of
a "totalitarian" Marxism. It

is only Marx's labor theory of value, however, that exposes the

mystification of the wages system that disguises exploitation as a "fair exchange"
between capital and labor and reveals the truth about this relation as one of exploitation.
Only Orthodox Marxism explains how what the workers sell to the capitalist is not labor, a
commodity like any other whose price is determined by fluctuations in supply and demand, but their labor-power
their ability to labor in a system which has systematically "freed" them from the means
of production so they are forced to work or starvewhose value is determined by the amount of time
socially necessary to reproduce it daily. The value of labor-power is equivalent to the value of wages
workers consume daily in the form of commodities that keep them alive to be exploited
tomorrow. Given the technical composition of production today this amount of time is a slight fraction of the workday
the majority of which workers spend producing surplus-value over and above their needs. The surplus-value is what is
pocketed by the capitalists in the form of profit when the commodities are sold. Class

is the antagonistic

division thus established between the exploited and their exploiters. Without Marx's
labor theory of value one could only contest the after effects of this outright theft of social
labor-power rather than its cause lying in the private ownership of production. The
flexodox rejection of the labor theory of value as the "dogmatic" core of a totalitarian
Marxism therefore is a not so subtle rejection of the principled defense of the
(scientific) knowledge workers need for their emancipation from exploitation
because only the labor theory of value exposes the opportunism of knowledges (ideology)
that occult this exploitation. Without the labor theory of value socialism would only be a moral dogma that
appeals to the sentiments of "fairness" and "equality" for a "just" distribution of the social wealth that does the work of
capital by naturalizing the exploitation of labor under capitalism giving it an acceptable "human face." It

is only
Orthodox Marxism that explains socialism as an historical inevitability that
is tied to the development of social production itself and its requirements. Orthodox
Marxism makes socialism scientific because it explains how in the capitalist system, based on the private consumption of
labor-power (competition), the objective tendency is to reduce the amount of time labor spends in reproducing itself
(necessary labor) while expanding the amount of time labor is engaged in producing surplus-value (surplus-labor) for the
capitalist through the introduction of machinery into the production process by the capitalists themselves to lower their
own labor costs. Because

of the competitive drive for profits under capitalism it is historically

inevitable that a point is reached when the technical masterythe amount of time
socially necessary on average to meet the needs of society through the processing of
natural resourcesis such that the conditions of the workers worsen relative to the
owners and becomes an unbearable global social contradiction in the midst of the ever
greater mass of wealth produced. It is therefore just as inevitable that at such a moment it obviously makes
more sense to socialize production and meet the needs of all to avoid the explosive social conflicts perpetually generated
by private property than to maintain the system at the risk of total social collapse on a world scale. "Socialism or
barbarism" (Luxemburg) is the inevitable choice faced by humanity because of capitalism. Either

private property and the exploitation of labor in production , in which case more and more social
resources will go into policing the growingly desperate surplus-population generated by the technical efficiency of social
production, or

socialize production and inaugurate a society whose founding principle is

"from each according to his ability, to each according to his needs" (Marx, Critique
of the Gotha Program, Selected Works, 325) and "in which the free development of each is the condition for the free
development of all" (Manifesto of the Communist Party, Selected Works, 53). The

time has come to state it

clearly so that even the flexodox opportunists may grasp it: Orthodox Marxism is not a
free-floating "language-game" or "meta-narrative" for arbitrarily constructing local
utopian communities or spectral activist inversions of ideology meant to seduce "desire"
and "mobilize" (glorify) subjectivityit is an absolute prerequisite for our
emancipation from exploitation and a new society freed from necessity !
Orthodox Marxism is the only global theory of social change. Only Orthodox Marxism has
explained why under the system of wage-labor and capital communism is not "an ideal to which reality will have to adjust
itself" but "the real movement which abolishes the present state of things" (The German Ideology 57) because of its
objective explanation of and ceaseless commitment to "the self-conscious, independent movement of the immense
majority, in the interest of the immense majority" (Manifesto of the Communist Party, Selected Works, 45) to end social
inequality forever.

Their questioning is anti-political and creates philosophy as a

tautological and self-referential project instead of one that has
an active role in political life.
Buck-Morss 13 (Susan Buck-Morss, Professor of Political Science @ CUNY Graduate
Center and Professor Emeritus at Cornell, A Commonist Ethics, The Idea of
Communism vol 2, ed. by Slavoj Zizek, pg. 57 61, wcp)
The first point: politics is not an ontology. The claim that the political is always ontological needs to

be challenged.' It is not merely that the negative is the case - that the political is never ontological (as Badiou points out, a

the ontological is
never political. It follows that the move from la politique (everyday politics) to le politique (the very meaning of the
simple negation leaves everything in place). Instead, what is called for is a reversal of the negation:

political) is a one-way street. With all due respect to Marcel Gauchet, Chantal Mouffe, Giorgio Agamben, and a whole slew
of others, the

attempt to discover within empirical political life (la politique) the ontological
essence of the political (le politique) leads theory into a dead end from which there is
no return to actual, political practice. There is nothing gained by this move from the feminine to the
masculine form. The post-metaphysical project of discovering ontological truth within lived
existence fails politically. It fails in the socially disengaged Husserlian-Heideggerian mode of bracketing the
existential to discover the essential nature of what 'the political' is. And it fails in the socially critical, postFoucauldian mode of historicized ontology, disclosing the multiple ways of political
being-in-the-world within particular cultural and temporal configurations. This is not news.
From the mid 1930s it was Adorno's obsessive concern, in the context of the rise of fascism, to demonstrate the failure of
the ontological attempt to ground a philosophy of Being by starting from the given world - or, in Heideggerian language, to
move from the ontic, that is, being (seind) in the sense of that which is empirically given, to the ontological, that which is
essentially true of existence (Dasein as the 'a priori structure' of 'existentiality'4). Adorno

argued that any

ontology derived (or reduced) from the ontic turns the philosophical project into one
big tautology.6 He has a point, and the political implications are serious. Ontology
identifies. Identity was anathema to Adorno, and nowhere more so than in its political
implications - the identity between ruler and ruled that fascism affirmed. Indeed, even
parliamentary rule can be seen to presuppose a striving for identity, whereby consensus becomes an end in itself
regardless of the truth content of that consensus.7 It is not that Heidegger's philosophy (or any existential ontology) is in
itself fascist (that would be an ontological claim). Rather, by

a resolution of the question of Being before

subsequent political analyses, the latter have no philosophical traction. They are
subsumed under the ontological a prior is that themselves must remain indifferent to
their content.8 Existential ontology is mistaken in assuming that, once 'the character of being' (Heidegger) is
conceptually grasped, it will return us to the material, empirical world and allow us to gather its diversities and
multiplicities under philosophy's own pre-understandings in ways adequate to the exigencies of collective action, the
demands of actual political life. In fact, the

ontological is never political. A communist (or communist)

ontology is a contradiction in terms. But, you may ask, did not Marx himself outline in
his early writings a full ontology based on the classical, Aristotelian claim that man is by
nature a social animal? Are not the 1844 manuscripts an elaboration of that claim, mediated by a historically
specific critique, hence an extended social ontology of man's alienation from nature (including his own) and from his
fellow man? Yes,

but in actual, political life, this ontological man does not exist. Instead, we
existing creatures are men and women, black and brown, capitalists and workers, gay
and straight, and the meaning of these categories of being is in no way stable.
Moreover, these differences matter less than whether we are unemployed,
have prison records, or are in danger of being deported. And no matter what we are in
these ontic ways, our beings do not fit neatly into our politics as conservatives, anarchists, evangelicals, Tea Party
supporters, Zionists, Islamists, and (a few) communists. We are social animals, yes, but we are also anti-social, and our
animal natures are thoroughly mediated by society's contingent forms. Yes,

the early Marx developed a

philosophical ontology. Nothing follows from this politically. Proletarian dictatorship is
not thereby legitimated, and the whole thorny issue of false consciousness (empirical vs.
imputed/ ascribed [zugerechnectes] consciousness) is not thereby resolved. At the same time,
philosophical thought has every light - and obligation - to intervene actively
in political life. Here is Marx on the subject of intellectual practice, including philosophizing: But again when I
am active scientifically, etc. - when I am engaged in activity which I can seldom perform in direct community with others then I am social, because I am active as a man [human being]. Not only is the material of my activity given to me as a
social product (as is even the language in which the thinker is active): my own existence is social activity, and therefore
that which I make of myself, I make of myself for society and with the consciousness of myself as a social being. Again,

no matter how deeply one thinks one's way into this ontological generalization, no
specific political orientation follows as a consequence. It describes the intellectual work of Heidegger

and Schmitt every bit as much as it does that of Marx or our own. For

Marx, ontological philosophy was

only the starting point in a lifelong practice of scientific thinking that developed in
response to the historical events surrounding him. Through the trajectory of his work, the entire
tradition of Western political philosophy took a left turn away from metaphysics and towards an engagement with the
emerging social sciences - economics, anthropology, sociology, psychology - under stood not in their positivist, datagathering or abstract mathematical forms, but as sciences of history - not historically, historicity, historicism and the like,
but concrete, material history. With

this hard-left turn (which is an orientation that may or may not involve
elements from the 'linguistic turn,' the 'ethical turn,' the 'aesthetic turn'), political philosophy morphs into
social theory done reflectively - that is, critically. It becomes critical theory. When
Marx said thinking was itself a practice, he meant it in this sense . He did not then
ask: What is the ontological meaning of the being of practice? Instead, he tried to find out
as much as he could about the socio-historical practices of actual human beings in his
time. So the question Marx's early writings leaves us with is this; How do we turn this social - we could say, in a
descriptive way, socialist - fact of our work, and our consciousness of this work as social beings, into a communist
practice? How

are we to conceive of a communist ethics? Not by the phenomenological

reduction to some essence of what it is to be a social being: i.e., a caring being, a beingto-death, a being-with, and so on, as Heidegger proposed - but rather by an analysis, a
becoming-conscious, of the specific society, the specific cares, the specific deaths
that are simultaneous with our own; not common in the sense o f the same as ours
(experiences are very unequal in today's society), but of happening to others who share, in
common, this time and this space - a space as big as the globe and a time as
actual as now.

Their theorizations obscure the historical agency of social

production and play into the hands of the bourgeois academic
Tumino 01 (Stephen Tumino, Really Hardcore Marxist, What is Orthodox Marxism
and Why it Matters Now More Than Ever Before, Red Critique vol. 1, wcp)
Two Why Everyone has Suddenly Become an Orthodox Marxist A parody of politics has taken over left politics in the U.S.
and Europe. A parody in whichafter the dead-end of the designer socialisms of postmarxismssuddenly everyone is an
"orthodox" Marxist: from Zizek who in the introduction to a selection of his work writes of the need to "return to the
centrality of the Marxist critique of political economy" (Reader ix); to Michael Sprinker who referred to himself as a "neoconservative marxist" ("Forum" 68). In calling himself a "neoconservative" Sprinker was embracing with pride Butler's
definition of the term in her "Merely Cultural" in which she equates it with "leftist orthodoxy" (268). Then there is Paul
Smith who now, after mocking Orthodox Marxism in Discerning the Subject and Universal Abandon, says he has a "fairly
orthodox understanding of what Marx and the Marxist tradition has had to say about capitalism" (Millennial Dreams 3).
Parody is always the effect of a slippage and the slippage here is that in spite of the sudden popularity of "orthodox"
Marxism, the actual theories and practices of the newly orthodox are more than ever before flexodox. It

seems as if
once more Lenin's notion that when the class antagonism emerges more sharply "the
liberals. . . dare not deny the class struggle, but attempt to narrow down
[and] to curtail. . . the concept" ("Liberal and Marxist Conceptions of the Class Struggle," 122) has
been proven by history. "Orthodox" Marxism has become the latest cover by which the
bourgeois left authenticates its credentials and proceeds to legitimate the economics of
the ruling class and its anti-proletarian politics. Take Paul Smith, for example. In Orthodox Marxism
class is the central issue. (I put aside here that in his writings, on subjectivity for example, Smith has already gotten rid of
the "central" by a deconstructive logic). What Smith does with class is a rather interesting test of how Orthodox Marxism
is being used to legitimate the class interests of the owners. Smith reworks class and turns it into a useless Habermasian
communicative act. He writes that "classes are what are formed in struggle, not something that exists prior to struggle"
(Millennial Dreams 60). To

say it again: the old ideological textualization of the "new left" is not
working any more (just look at the resistance against globalization), so the ruling class is now

reworking the "old left" to defend itself. Against the Orthodox Marxist theory of class, Smith
evacuates class of an objective basis in the extraction of surplus labor in production, and
makes it the effect of local conflicts. In short, Smith reverses the Orthodox Marxist position that, "It is not
the consciousness of men that determines their being, but, on the contrary, their social being that determines their
consciousness" (Marx, Contribution, 21), and turns

it into a neomarxist view that what matters is

their consciousness. In this he in fact shares a great deal with conservative theories that
make "values" (the subjective) as what matters in social life and not economic access. Zizek
provides another example of the flexodox parody of Marxism today. Capitalism in Orthodox Marxism is explained as an
historical mode of production based on the privatization of the means of subsistence in the hands of a few, i.e., the
systemic exploitation of labor by capital. Capitalism is the world-historic regime of unpaid surplus-labor. In

writings, capitalism is not based on exploitation in production (surplus-labor), but on
struggles over consumption ("surplus-enjoyment"). The Orthodox Marxist concepts that lay
bare the exploitative production relations in order to change them are thus replaced with
a "psycho-marxist" pastiche of consumption in his writings, a revisionist move that has
proven immensely successful in the bourgeois cultural criticism. Zizek, however, has taken to
representing this displacement of labor (production) with desire (consumption) as "strictly correlative" to the concept of
"revolutionary praxis" found in the texts of Orthodox Marxism (e.g., "Repeating Lenin"). Revolutionary practice is always
informed by class consciousness and transformative cultural critique has always aimed at producing class consciousness
by laying bare the false consciousness that ruling ideology institutes in the everyday. Transformative

critique, in other words, is always a linking of consciousness to production
practices from which a knowledge of social totality emerges . Zizek, however, long ago
abandoned Orthodox Marxist ideology critique as an epistemologically nave theory of "ideology" because it could not
account for the persistence of "desire" beyond critique (the "enlightened false-consciousness" of The Sublime Object of
Ideology, Mapping Ideology,. . . ). His more recent "return to the centrality of the Marxist critique" is, as a result, a purely
tropic voluntarism of the kind he endlessly celebrates in his diffusionist readings of culture as desire-al moments when
social norms are violated and personal emotions spontaneously experienced as absolutely compulsory (as "drive"). His

concept of revolutionary Marxist praxis consists of re-describing it as an "excessive"

lifestyle choice (analogous to pedophilia and other culturally marginalized practices, The Ticklish Subject 381-8).
On this reading, Marxism is the only metaphorical displacement of "desire" into
"surplus-pleasure" that makes imperative the "direct socialization of the productive
process" (Ticklish Subject 350) and that thus causes the subjects committed to it to experience
a Symbolic death at the hands of the neoliberal culture industry. It is this "affirmative" reversal of
the right-wing anti-Marxist narrative that makes Zizek's writings so highly praised in the bourgeois "high-theory" market
where it is read as "subtle" and an example of "deep thinking" because it

confirms a transcendental
position considered above politics by making all politics ideological. If everything is
ideology then there can be no fundamental social change only formal
repetition and reversal of values (Nietzsche). Zizek's pastiche of psycho-marxism thus
consists in presenting what is only theoretically possible for the capitalistthose few who
have already met, in excess, their material needs through the exploitation of the labor of
the other and who can therefore afford to elaborate fantasies of desireas a universal
form of agency freely available to everyone. Psycho-marxism does what bourgeois ideology has always
donemaintain the bourgeois hegemony over social production by commodifying, through an aesthetic relay, the
contradictions of the wages system. What

bourgeois ideology does above all is deny that

the mode of social production has an historic agency of its own independent
of the subject. Zizek's "return" to "orthodox" Marxism erases its materialist theory of desirethat "our wants and
their satisfaction have their origin in society" (Marx, Wage-Labour and Capital, 33) and do not stand in "excess" of it. In
fact, he says exactly the opposite and turns the need for Orthodox Marxist theory now
into a phantom desire of individuals: he makes "class struggle" an effect of a
"totalitarian" desire to polarize the social between "us" and "them" (using the "friend/enemy"
binary found in the writings of the Nazi Carl Schmitt, Ticklish Subject 226). What is basic only to Orthodox
Marxist theory, however, which is what enables it to produce class consciousness

through a critique of ideology, is its materialist prioritization of "need" over "desire." Only
Orthodox Marxism recognizes that although capitalism is compelled to continually expand the needs of workers because
of the profit motive it at the same time cannot satisfy these needs because of its logic of profit. "Desire"

always an effect of class relations, of the gap between the material level and
historical potential of the forces of production and the social actuality of un-met needs.
In spite of their formal "criticality," the writings of Zizek, Spivak, Smith, Hennessy and
other theorists of designer socialisms produce concepts that legitimate the
existing social relations. The notion of class in their work, for example, is the one that now is commonly
deployed in the bourgeois newspapers. In their reporting on what has become known as the "Battle of Seattle," and in the
coverage of the rising tide of protest against the financial institutions of U.S. monopoly capital which are pillaging the
nations of the South, the bourgeois media represents the emergent class struggles as a matter of an alternative "lifestyle
choice" (e.g., the Los Angeles Times, "Hey Hey, Ho Ho, Catch Our Anti-Corporate Puppet Show!"). On

diffusional narrative, "class" is nothing more than an opportunity for
surplus-pleasure "outside" the market for those who have voluntarily "discarded"
the normal pleasures of U.S. culture. It is the same "lifestyle" politics that in the flexodox marxism of
Antonio Negri is made an autonomous zone of "immaterial labor" which he locates as the "real communism" that makes

What is at the core of both

the flexodox marxism and the popular culture of class as "lifestyle" is a de-politicization
of the concepts of Orthodox Marxism which neutralizes them as indexes of social
inequality and reduces them to merely descriptive categories which take what is for what
ought to be. Take the writings of Pierre Bourdieu for example. Bourdieu turns Marx's dialectical concepts of "class"
existing society post-capitalist already so that revolution is not necessary (Empire).

and "capital" which lay bare the social totality, into floating "categories" and reflexive "classifications" that can be formally
applied to any social practice because they have been cut off from their connection to the objective global relations of
production. Bourdieu, in short, legitimates the pattern of class as "lifestyle" in the bourgeois media by his view that "class"
is an outcome of struggles over "symbolic capital" in any "field." I

leave aside here that his diffusion of the

logic of capital into "cultural capital," "educational capital" and the like is itself part of a
depoliticization of the relation between capital and labor and thus a blurring of class
antagonism. What Bourdieu's "field" theory of class struggle does is segregate the
struggles into so many autonomous zones lacking in systemic determination by the
historic structure of property so that everyone is considered to be equally in possession
of "capital" (ownership is rhetorically democratized) making socialist revolution unnecessary. What
the reduction of "class" and "capital" to the self-evidency of local cultural differences
cannot explain is the systemic primacy of the production of surplus-value in unpaidlabor, the basic condition of the global majority which determines that their needs are
not being met and compels them into collective class struggles . Without totalizing
knowledge of exploitationwhich is why such dialectical concepts as
"capital" form the basis of Orthodox Marxist class theoryexploitation
cannot be abolished. The cultural idealism of the de-politicized voiding of Marxist concepts fits right in with
the "volunteer-ism" of the neoliberals and "compassionate" conservatives that they use to justify their massive
privatization programs. Considering

class struggle politics as a matter of cultural struggles over

symbolic status is identical to the strategy of considering the dismantling of social
welfare as an opportunity for "local" agency freed from coercive state power , i.e., the bedrock
of the "non-governmental" activism and "community" building of the bourgeois reformists. When
President select Bush seeks to mobilize what he calls the "armies of compassion" against the "Washington insiders" and
return "power" to the "people" it is the old cultural studies logic that all politics is "people vs. power bloc," a warmed over
popular frontism that makes politics a matter of building de-politicized cross-class coalitions for bourgeois right, utopic
models of a post-political social order without class struggle possessing equality of representation that excludes the
revolutionary vanguard. As Marx and Engels said of the "bourgeois socialists" of their day, such utopian measures "at. . .
best, lessen the cost, and simplify the administrative work, of bourgeois government" (Manifesto of the Communist Party,
Selected Works, 59). Zizek's "affirmation" of revolutionary Marxism as a "totalitarian" desire that polarizes the cultural
"lifeworld" between "friends" and "enemies" is another relay of "class-as-an-after-effect of 'struggle'" of the networked left.
What the parody does is make class struggle a rhetorical "invention" of Marx(ists) analogous to the bourgeois "rights"
politics of the transnational coalitional regime of exploitation ruling today, and erases the need for a global theory of social

change. Orthodox

Marxism cuts through the closed atmosphere of the "friends" of the

networked left and their embrace of a voluntarist "compassionate" millenarianism with a
critique from outside so to expose the global collective need for a revolutionary social
theory and red cultural studies to end exploitation for all.


Alt Boring Politics

The alternative is boring politics engaging bureaucratic
structures like the state through concrete demands is necessary
for material change
Frank, 12 PhD, History, University of Chicago and Political Analyst (Thomas, To the
Precinct Station, Baffler, No. 21,

Measured in terms of words published per political results, on the other hand, OWS may
be the most over-described historical event of all time. Nearly every one of these books
makes sweeping claims for the movements significance, its unprecedented and earthshattering innovations. Just about everything it does is brilliantly, inventively, mindblowingly people-empowering. And what do we have to show for it today in our normal
lives? Not much. President Obama may talk about the top 1 percent now, but he is
apparently as committed as ever to austerity, to striking a grand bargain with the
Republicans. Occupy itself is pretty much gone. It was evicted from Zuccotti Park about
two months after it beganan utterly predictable outcome for which the group seems to
have made inadequate preparation. OWS couldnt bring itself to come up with a real set
of demands until after it got busted, when it finally agreed on a single item.[***] With the
exception of some residual groups here and there populated by the usual activist types,
OWS has today pretty much fizzled out. The media storm that once surrounded it has
blown off to other quarters. Pause for a moment and compare this record of
accomplishment to that of Occupys evil twin, the Tea Party movement, and the larger
right-wing revival of which it is a part. Well, under the urging of this trumped-up protest
movement, the Republican Party proceeded to win a majority in the U.S. House of
Representatives; in the state legislatures of the nation it took some six hundred seats
from the Democrats; as of this writing it is still purging Republican senators and
congressmen deemed insufficiently conservative and has even succeeded in having one
of its own named as the GOPs vice-presidential candidate. The question that the books
under consideration here seek to answer is: What is the magic formula that made OWS
so successful? But its exactly the wrong question. What we need to be asking about
Occupy Wall Street is: Why did this effort fail? How did OWS blow all the promise of its
early days? Why do even the most popular efforts of the Left come to be mired in a gluey
swamp of academic talk and pointless antihierarchical posturing ? The action
certainly started with a bang. When the occupation of Zuccotti Park began, in September
2011, the OWS cause was overwhelmingly popular; indeed, as Todd Gitlin points out,
hating Wall Street may well have been the most popular left-wing cause since the
thirties. Inequality had reached obscene levels, and it was no longer the act of a radical to
say so. The bank bailouts of the preceding years had made it obvious that government
was captured by organized money. Just about everyone resented Wall Street in those
days; just about everyone was happy to see someone finally put our fury in those crooks
overpaid faces. People flocked to the OWS standard. Cash donations poured in; so did
food and books. Celebrities made appearances in Zuccotti, and the media began covering
the proceedings with an attentiveness it rarely gives to leftist actions. But these accounts,

with a few exceptions here and there, misread that overwhelming approval of Occupys
cause as an approval of the movements mechanics: the camping out in the park, the way
food was procured for an army of protesters, the endless search for consensus, the
showdowns with the cops, the twinkles. These things, almost every writer separately
assumes, are what the Occupy phenomenon was really about. These are the details the
public hungers to know. The building of a community in Zuccotti Park, for example, is
a point of special emphasis. Noam Chomskys thoughts epitomize the genre when he tells
us that one of the main achievements of the movement has been to create
communities, real functioning communities of mutual support, democratic interchange,
et cetera. The reason this is important, he continues, is because Americans tend to be
very isolated and neighborhoods are broken down, community structures have broken
down, people are kind of alone. How building such communities helps us to tackle the
power of high finance is left unexplained, as is Chomskys implication that a city of eight
million people, engaged in all the complexities of modern life, should learn how humans
are supposed to live together by studying an encampment of college students. The actual
sins of Wall Street, by contrast, are much less visible. For example, when you read
Occupying Wall Street, the work of a team of writers who participated in the protests,
you first hear about the subject of predatory lending when a sympathetic policeman
mentions it in the course of a bust. The authors themselves never bring it up. And if you
want to know how the people in Zuccotti intended to block the banks agendahow they
intended to stop predatory lending, for exampleyou have truly come to the wrong
place. Not because its hard to figure out how to stop predatory lending, but because the
way the Occupy campaign is depicted in these books, it seems to have had no intention of
doing anything except building communities in public spaces and inspiring mankind
with its noble refusal to have leaders. Unfortunately, though, thats not enough. Building
a democratic movement culture is essential for movements on the left, but its also just a
starting point. Occupy never evolved beyond it. It did not call for a subtreasury system,
like the Populists did. It didnt lead a strike (a real one, that is), or a sit-in, or a blockade
of a recruitment center, or a takeover of the deans office. The IWW free-speech fights of
a century ago look positively Prussian by comparison. With Occupy, the horizontal
culture was everything. The process is the message, as the protesters used to say and as
most of the books considered here largely concur. The aforementioned camping, the
cooking, the general-assembling, the filling of public places: thats what Occupy was all
about. Beyond that there seems to have been virtually no strategy to speak of, no agenda
to transmit to the world. Whether or not to have demands, you might recall, was
something that Occupy protesters debated hotly among themselves in the days when
Occupy actually occupied something. Reading these books a year later, however, that
debate seems to have been consensed out of existence. Virtually none of the authors
reviewed here will say forthrightly that the failure to generate demands was a tactical
mistake. On the contrary: the quasi-official account of the episode (Occupying Wall
Street) laughs off demands as a fetish object of literal-minded media types who stupidly
crave hierarchy and chains of command. Chris Hedges tells us that demands were
something required only by the elites, and their mouthpieces in the media. Enlightened
people, meanwhile, are supposed to know better; demands imply the legitimacy of the
adversary, meaning the U.S. government and its friends, the banks. Launching a protest
with no formal demands is thought to be a great accomplishment, a gesture of surpassing
democratic virtue. And here we come to the basic contradiction of the campaign. To
protest Wall Street in 2011 was to protest, obviously, the outrageous financial

misbehavior that gave us the Great Recession; it was to protest the political power of
money, which gave us the bailouts; it was to protest the runaway compensation practices
that have turned our societys productive labor into bonuses for the 1 percent. All three of
these catastrophes, however, were brought on by deregulation and tax-cuttingby a
philosophy of liberation as anarchic in its rhetoric as Occupy was in reality. Check your
premises, Rand-fans: it was the bankers own uprising against the hated state that
wrecked the American way of life. Nor does it require poststructuralism-leadingthrough-anarchism to understand how to reverse these developments. You do it by
rebuilding a powerful and competent regulatory state . You do it by rebuilding
the labor movement. You do it with bureaucracy. Occupiers often seemed aware of
this. Recall what you heard so frequently from protesters lips back in the days of
September 2011: Restore the old Glass-Steagall divide between investment and
commercial banks, they insisted. Bring back big government! Bring back safety! Bring
back boredom! But thats no way to fire the imagination of the world. So, how do you
maintain the carnival while secretly lusting for the CPAs? By indefinitely suspending the
obvious next step. By having no demands. Demands would have signaled that humorless,
doctrinaire adults were back in charge and that the fun was over. This was an inspired
way to play the situation in the beginning, and for a time it was a great success. But it
also put a clear expiration date on the protests. As long as demands and the rest of the
logocentric requirements were postponed, Occupy could never graduate to the next level.
It would remain captive to what Christopher Lasch criticizedway back in 1973as the
cult of participation, in which the experience of protesting is what protesting is all

Alt - Revolution
Our alternative is the affirmation of the historical necessity of
communism. The AFF is irrelevant to a movement that seeks the
abolition of inequality forever, a class based revolutionary
theory is a prior question.
Tumino 12 (Stephen Tumino, Really Hardcore Marxist, Is Occupy Wall Street
Communist, Red Critique vol. 14, wcp)
Leaving aside that the purpose of Wolff's speech was to popularize a messianic vision of a more just society based on
workplace democracy, he is right about one thing: Marx's

original contribution to the idea of

communism is that it is an historical and material movement produced by the
failure of capitalism not a moral crusade to reform it. Today we are confronted with
the fact that capitalism has failed in exactly the way that Marx explained was inevitable.
[4] It has "simplified the class antagonism" (The Communist Manifesto); by concentrating wealth
and centralizing power in the hands of a few it has succeeded in dispossessing the masses
of people of everything except their labor power. As a result it has revealed that the ruling class "is unfit
to rule," as The Communist Manifesto concludes, "because it is incompetent to assure an existence to its slave within his
slavery, because it cannot help letting him sink into such a state, that it has to feed him, instead of being fed by him."

And the slaves are thus compelled to fight back . Capitalism makes communism
necessary because it has brought into being an international working class whose
common conditions of life give them not only the need but also the economic power to
establish a society in which the rule is "from each according to their ability, to each
according to their need" (Marx, Critique of the Gotha Programme). Until and unless we confront the
fact that capitalism has once again brought the world to the point of taking sides for or
against the system as a whole, communism will continue to be just a bogey-man or a
nursery-tale to frighten and soothe the conscience of the owners rather than what it isthe materialist
theory that is an absolute requirement for our emancipation from exploitation and a new
society freed from necessity! As Lenin said, "Without revolutionary theory there
can be no revolutionary movement" (What Is To Be Done?). We are confronted with an
historic crisis of global proportions that demands of us that we take
Marxism seriously as something that needs to be studied to find solutions to the
problems of today. Perhaps then we can even begin to understand communism in the way that The Communist
Manifesto presents it as "the self-conscious, independent movement of the immense majority, in the interest of the
immense majority" to end inequality forever.


Prison expansion is driven by capitalism prisoners have
become labor exploited for surplus-value, used to drive down
production costs and increase profit margins increasing rates
of incarceration are tied to increasing integration of prisons into
the global economy even local arguments in favor of new
prisons are tied to jobs and capitalist ideology prefer our
systematic Marxist analysis of prisons to their more ambiguous
historical arguments
Smith & Hattery 6 (Earl, Ph.D., Emeritus, is a professor of sociology and the
Rubin Distinguished Professor of American Ethnic Studies at Wake Forest University,
Angela, Professor and Director of Women & Gender Studies at George Mason University,
2007, African American Families,
%20used%20to%20be%20a%20hidden%20institution&f=false, JHR)
Interestingly, whereas prison used to be a hidden institution, tucked away in the backwaters of American society, today they are found everywhere. This deliberate
implementation over the last 2 decades of sentencing policy can be seen as using prisons as catchments for the undesirables in our society (8) . Furthermore,

prisons provide a "captive" population, one that is highly vulnerable, and one
that has increasingly been exploited for its labor. Wisconsin sociologist Professor
Erik Olin Wright put it thus: In the case of labor power, a person can cease to
have economic value in capitalism if it cannot be deployed productively.
This is the essential condition of people in the 'underclass.' They are
oppressed because they are denied access to various kinds of productive
resources, above all the necessary means to acquire the skills needed to
make their labor power salable. As a result they are not consistently exploited. Understood this way, the
underclass consists of human beings who are largely expendable from the
point of view of the logic of capitalism. Like Native Americans who became a landless underclass in the nineteenth century,
repression rather than incorporation is the central mode of social control
directed toward them. Capitalism does not need the labor power of
unemployed inner city youth. The material interests of the wealthy and
privileged segments of American society would be better served if these people
simply disappeared. However, unlike in the nineteenth century, the moral
and political forces are such that direct genocide is no longer a viable
strategy. The alternative, then, is to build prisons and cordon off the zones of
cities in which the underclass lives. (9) (Wright 1997:153). According to Wright,
prisons can be seen as a form of modern day genocide, a strategy for
removing unwanted, unnecessary, un-useful members of a capitalist society. It
is a system whereby the privileged can segregate or cordon-off these unwanted members of society without the moral burden of genocide. It is easy to see how

Prisoners and ex-convicts become virtual non-citizens , unable to challenge
the economic, social or political power structures. And, the very fact of
cordoning off some individuals means that the goods and riches of society
are accessible only to those citizens who are not cordoned-off. As Baca Zinn and Thorton Dill
prisons accomplish this goal: they remove individuals from society and they permanently (in many states) disenfranchise them from the political realm

every system of oppression has as its reflection a system of privilege

Hondagneu-Sotelo, and Messner 2005). That which cordons some off, "cordons" others in. We note here that many first time readers of Wright interpret his
comments as suggesting that he is advocating the cordoning-off of poor, primarily African American citizens, those with few skills that can be utilized by
capitalism, from the opportunity structure. Nothing could be further from the truth. As a neo-Marxists, Wright is arguing that this desire to rid the society of
individuals who have no skills to contribute to the insatiable and every expanding capitalist machine resulted in genocides such as that of the Native Americans in

with genocide being deemed morally

objectionable, capitalism seeks new ways in order to accomplish this same
goal. And, he argues that in the United States, prisons have provided a mechanism to meet this goal. We argue that while Wright was astute in his
observations that prisons provided a mechanism for removing the "unexploitable" labor from society, we argue that this formerly
unexploitable class of Americans has now been redefined as highly
exploitable by national and multinational corporations. Taking the lead
from prison labor that has been around for a century or more, from agricultural labor at prison farms like Parchman and Angola, to the license
plate factories that were popular in the middle part of the 20th century , dozens of Fortune 500 companies have
moved at least part of their operations into prisons. As the data will
demonstrate, this transition to prison labor allows corporations to
significantly cut their labor costs and thus presumably increase their profits,
much like plantations, ship builders, and other industries did during the 200 plus
years of slavery in the United States (10). Furthermore, we argue that this relationship between the
capitalist economy and the prison system that characterizes the prison
industrial complex (PIC) creates a feedback loop. The more prisons that are
built for profit, rather than rehabilitation, the more people who must be
incarcerated. Prisons only make money when the cells are occupied.
Similarly, the more prisons provide labor for corporations, the more prisons
will be built. Thus, we suggest that the PIC and its attendant industries
contribute to the increased rates of incarceration in the US and the
continued exploitation of labor, primarily African American labor. The Economics of the PIC: The Case of the Corrections
our own country and the Holocaust in Europe. Today,

Corporation of America (CCA) The economic benefits a prison brings to a community, except for the possible increases associated with census discrepancies, are

. Though a few jobs are created, prisons are actually very expensive to
run. And, though the government pays part of the cost of incarceration, the
inmates themselves seldom contribute to the cost of their own incarceration
(11) . They don't pay rent. They don't pay for food and they obviously don't contribute toward upkeep and maintenance. This structure is a physical space that

while providing housing for the convicted, receives little in return directly from the inhabitants themselves. The Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) builds
and staffs prisons. Currently they have 67,000 beds (approximately 62,000 inmates) in 63 facilities - from California to Oklahoma to Montana to the District of
Columbia-- and have plans to build more. The CCA also provides food service and recreational services to their prisoners, at a cost. This private corporation,
founded in 1983, trades on the New York Stock Exchange (CXW) and employs approximately 15,000 personnel. And,

it is quite expensive

to house a single prisoner in a jail or prison. Rough estimates indicate that it costs most states more to house a prisoner per
year than to educate a citizen in college for that same year. At an average cost per year to house a single prisoner at $23,183.69, when multiplied by approximately

there has to
be another method to pay for, both in the public or private facility, the built
environment of the prison? Even the most basic economic analysis would
note that the prison loses money when there are empty cells. Thus, just like college campuses
must enroll enough students to fill the dorms, prisons rely on being at "full capacity ." Thus, as some others have also
suggested (See (Mauer 2002), part of the explanation for the rise in
incarceration rates is the fact that building and expanding prisons means
that we must continue to fill them. We must impose harsher and longer sentences and we must continue to funnel inmates
2 million prisoners nationally, one arrives at the figure of $46.3 billion dollars per year for incarceration in the United States. Hence,

into prisons. And, we argue here that this funnel is not being filled with white collar offenders such as Bernie Ebbs (WorldCom), Ken Lay (Enron), or Martha
Stewart, but rather by vulnerable, unempowered populations, primarily young, poor, African American men. Second, and perhaps more interesting is the rise of
prison industries. Whereas many prison farms, like Parchman and Angola, are self-sustaining (the inmates grow all their own food and produce all of the textiles,

a new phenomenon is the entrance of prisons into the

global economy. Prisons that were once producing goods only for their own
consumption are now producing goods for multinational, multi-billion
dollar corporations such as McDonalds, Microsoft, and Victoria's Secret. In
etc. that are needed within the prison),

some cases the prisons are paid a pittance and then charged, by the prison, for the costs of their incarceration. In other cases, the prisoners are not paid a wage,
instead a portion of their "wages" is paid directly to the prison. Finally we note that as a result of paying prisoners a sub-minimum wage (often less than $1 per

the corporations are able to pocket extraordinary profits made by saving

labor costs. We turn now to an examination of the wide range of prison industry that range from the manufacture of license plates for the state

department of motor vehicles to the sewing of lingerie for Victoria's Secret. The use of prisoners to make products has changed from the days that they made
license plates (12) for the state where the prison is located, to being deeply embedded in the production and service economy of the nation. Private commerce that
utilized prisoners as labor has been underway for centuries in Anglo societies, dating back to the 1600s and before (Hallett 2004). This fits with the findings of
Oshinsky showing that on the backs of prison labor Post-Bellum capitalism flourished (Oshinsky 1997). During the 20th century, penal capital moved from the raw

From an
economic perspective, this penal capital allows a middleman like Signature Packaging in
Washington State that moves products such as Starbucks to win contracts and outbid other packagers
because they use prison labor. They do not have to pay market wages, they
do not pay health insurance or vacation benefits nor do they have to worry
about severance pay or lay-offs. One aspect of the Prison Industrial Complex
that has perhaps received less attention is the role that the use of prison labor
plays in the post-industrial political economy of the United States at the beginning of the
convict leasing system characterized by Oshinsky to a service economy that mirrors the larger United States economy (Oshinsky 1997).

21st Century. Various legislation that began in the 1970s and was beefed up in the mid 1990s opened up the ways in which prison labor could be used in both
public and private industry. There are at least 4 different industries in which prison labor may be used. We will briefly summarize these 4 different ways, provide
examples of each, and conclude this section with a discussion of the outcomes of this form of economic production for inmates, prisons, and local communities. 1.

In many instances, for example in the case of the manufacture of license plates, factories are set up
inside the prison and inmates work, for low wages, usually 40 or 50 cents an hour. The product is then
shipped out to the client. Though this particular type of prison labor has been
around for a long time, it has expanded significantly in the last 5 years. Today, many states
Factory Work

and counties have corrections businesses that allow them to produce goods on the inside and sell them to other state and local government agencies as well as to

, colleges
like Grinnell have purchased all of their dorm furniture from the Iowa
"Inmate Labor Program." The bed that you sleep in, the dresser that you fill with your stuff, the desk that you study on all come from
non-profit organizations. For example, in Iowa, students attending public schools may very well sit at desks made by felons. Furthermore

the Grinnell Group, a suite of furniture made by prison laborers being held by the State of Iowa and working for pennies on the hour. It's not slave labor, but it's
really close [emphasis ours]. Prisoners are given the choice of working for Iowa Prison Industries for almost no pay or virtually never leaving their cells.

Working for the prison doesn't really teach much in the way of real-world
vocational skills, nor does it allow inmates to take care of their families on
the outside. The only real purpose of Iowa Prison Industries is to make
money for the state of Iowa through virtually forced labor (13). Examples like this illustrate one
of the ways in which state prisons have gotten into the "for profit" business of factory work. In many states, such as Mississippi (14), a single prison produces all of
the uniforms for inmates, corrections officers, and law enforcement officers, as well as holsters, and equipment for the entire staff of the state's department of
corrections. By utilizing prison labor to produce all of their supplies the state is able to keep costs low for the entire department of corrections. 2. Manual Labor The

As you drive along

interstate highway systems you may see inmates digging ditches, picking up
trash, mowing, and doing other sorts of highway labor. As with "factory
labor" this form of inmate labor is expanding. Inmates now use heavy
construction equipment, such as jack-hammers, in various projects, including the construction of tunnels in Pennsylvania. [These
practice of partnering with the state and local DOT (Department of Transportation) has also been popular for many years.

same inmates managed to take the jack-hammers "home" and use them to tunnel out of their home, the Western Pennsylvania Penitentiary in Pittsburgh!]

This form of inmate labor has been popular for decades, because the work is
often back-breaking, it is difficult to find laborers, and if unionized would be
very expensive. It is also reminiscent of, and most likely based on, the chain gangs popular in the 19th and 20th centuries, especially in the south.
Many municipalities, counties, and states post significant savings to the tax payers by relying on inmate labor for these sorts of projects. This use of prison labor is
not, however, without controversy. In communities that have recently suffered significant declines in manufacturing jobs, local residents are becoming more vocal
in their critique of these practices. In a rural Iowa community, for example, critics of this practice note that inmates have taken the jobs of countless citizens. In a
community which has seen a decline in agricultural manufacturing (meat packing) this loss of jobs is serious and local citizens, many of whom are now unemployed
or under-employed, resent the fact that jobs they could take are now being filled by prison inmates. In the case of the State liquor warehouse, 12 workers just lost
good-paying jobs to prisoners who are paid 37 cents an hour. Currently, 500 state government jobs and 190 private sector positions are being filled by prisoners
(15). Though prisons may bring some jobs into a community, especially jobs as corrections officers, this gain is off-set by the fact that the inmates may themselves

some prisons
were engaged in industries that provided goods for local markets . For
example, prison farms like Parchman in the Mississippi Delta and Angola in Louisiana have for decades targeted a
portion of their prison grown agricultural produce (mostly vegetables and more
recently goods like catfish) to local merchants for sale and consumption in local
communities. More recently, after loosening the laws that prohibited the direct competition between prisons and free enterprise , this
prison enterprise has expanded to include goods that are produced in
factory settings. At the Eastern Oregon Correctional Institution, a medium security state prison located in Pendleton, Oregon, that houses about
be competing with local citizens for jobs in the free market. 3. Direct Marketing to Local Communities For much of the last century,

1,500 inmates, prisoners were engaged in textile factory work making the denim uniforms for all the inmates in the entire Oregon State Prison system (16) . The
popularity of their denim grew and they now market their clothing line, sewn in the Prison Blues Garment Factory, appropriately named Prison Blues for
purchase over the internet! (17) At first glance this form of inmate labor seems nothing but positive. As extolled on the Prison Blues website, inmates learn a
marketable trade that they can take with them when they re-enter the "free world." Also, they keep busy during the day, and they earn some money which is used to
pay for their expenses in prison as well as for financial obligations such as child support that they have with the state. However, we argue, that

industries like this, be they agricultural or manufacturing or service, by

definition, as with public works, take job opportunities away from local
citizens. For example, the economy is quite depressed in the agricultural regions of the Mississippi Delta and the fact that the State of Mississippi,
through the MSDOC, has a strong hold in the farm-raised catfish market means that local farmers have less of an opportunity to make a living with this agricultural

, by paying wages that are

significantly below market value, products produced by inmates can be sold
at lower prices (and for a higher profit margin) often running free world
business that pay a living wage out of the market. Thus, the exploitation of
inmate labor can contribute to unemployment and lower wages in local
communities. 4. Service Sector Work Perhaps the most recent change in inmate
labor, and the one that seems to be the most controversial and disturbing, is the use of inmate labor for a variety
of service sector work that is sub-contracted through "middle-men" for some of the nations leading manufacturers. There are estimates
that in any given day the average American uses 30 products that were
produced, packaged, or sold out of a prison! Through this type of service sector
work, prison industries have truly infiltrated the global market . other corporations benefit
commodity ("Profitability Remains Elusive for Mississippi Catfish Farmers," 2004) (18). Furthermore

from the easy-hire, easy-fire and low-wage policies of prison employees. In Michael Moore's movie Roger and Me, he broke the story of TWA using prisoners to
book flights. Other companies such as McDonald's, Boeing, Microsoft, Sprint, Victoria's Secret (how was your bra made?), Compaq, Toys R Us, and Revlon use
prison labor for packaging, telemarketing, manufacturing, and distributing their products. Chances are, on any given day, you are the beneficiary of the work done
by between ten and fifteen prison laborers. (19) Every year, inmates at Twin Rivers Corrections Unit in Monroe, Washington are busy during the Holiday Season
because inmates there package Starbucks Coffee and Nintendo "GameCubes" for sale by retailers all over the nation. Twin Rivers, part of a four-unit prison that
houses mentally ill inmates, high- security felons, and participants in the state's Sex Offender Treatment Program, is also home to one of three facilities operated by
Signature Packaging Solutions, one of 15 private companies that operate within the state prison system and use inmate labor to supplement their outside workforce

Prisoners are engaged in everything from making electronic cash

registers for McDonalds to sewing lingerie for Victoria's Secret, to taking
airline reservations for TWA to packing Starbucks coffee. As noted previously, one can easily
(Barnett 2002).

come to the conclusion that this is a positive movement in the evolution of prisons because it provides work, it teaches job skills that are transportable, and it
allows inmates to earn some money while they are on the inside. However, critics, including many inmates at the Twin Rivers Corrections Unit, are skeptical of the

this evolution in prison industries. They do not necessarily believe it is indicative of a

rehabilitative movement in prisons, but rather is driven entirely by companies
seeking another way to maximize their profits. Others suspect that DOC's
motives are more pecuniary than pure-hearted, noting that by shaving nearly 50
percent off the top of an inmate's paycheck, the department slashes its own
expenses while subsidizing the companies in the program, which aren't required to pay for
underlying reasons for

inmates' health insurance or retirement. "They figure that if somebody's sitting around, doing their time and doing nothing, they don't make any money off them,"
Strauss says. Richard Stephens, a Bellevue property rights attorney, is suing DOC on the grounds that the program is unconstitutional, allows businesses that use
prison labor to undercut their competitors' prices, and unfairly subsidizes some private businesses at the expense of others... Private businesses are paying prison
workers less than they're paying on the outside, but they aren't reducing the markup to the consumer" they're pocketing the profits. Another key difference, Wright

prisoners can just be sent back to their cells whenever business goes
through a lull; "on the outside, they have to lay off workers. It's much more
difficult," Wright says (Barnett 2002). The use of inmate labor allows middle level
companies like Signature Packaging to under-bid their competitors by cutting
their labor costs. And prisons benefit as well because by engaging their
inmates in this sort of economic production and then charging inmates for
their own incarceration, they are able to keep the costs of running the prison down. Wright, an inmate at Twin Rivers, sums it up: They
notes, is that

need to know that they are buying these products from a company that is basically getting rich off prisoners." Wright, sent to Twin Rivers for first degree murder in
1987, believes parents would be disturbed to know that their child's GameCube was packaged by a murderer, rapist, or pedophile. These companies spend a lot of
money on their public image," Wright says, "but then they're quick to make money any way they can (Barnett 2002). The PIC and the Exploitation of African

Specifically, we have argued that the Prison Industrial Complex and its
attendant "prison industries" mimics the slave mode of production. That in
the end, wealthy whites (primarily men) are profiting by not paying a living
wage to African American inmates (also primarily men). Thus corporations are
engaging in an exploitive labor practice, termed by Marx as the extraction of
surplus value. By not paying what the labor is worth when inmates are working on farms, building furniture, assembling products for giant multiAmerican Labor

national corporations like Microsoft and McDonalds, corporations make additional profits. And, when large corporations from Microsoft to McDonalds engage in
this practice they also receive an unfair advantage over their competitors. Finally, we must note here that the whole scene is reminiscent of the "plantation
economy" of 17th, 18th, 19th century America. The slaves were Black chattel. They had no rights and they were a captive labor force. All of the above is the same for
today's prisoner. The consent decree between prisons and private companies and government has been shattered. No longer would the private prison companies
honor the agreement that prison goods be for use within prisons and sold only to government agencies. Now, the prison industries will sell to whomever, the
highest bidder. With profits from this industry now soaring upwards to $2 billion a year, it is a monster fully out of control. We have shown in this paper that the
Prison Industrial Complex (PIC) exploits the labor of African American men (and women). Perhaps more devastating, however, is the evidence that the PIC is a
modern form of slavery that has devastating consequences on the African American community as well. Families are separated, social capital ties broken, and

, not only are individuals

disenfranchised, but because of the relocation of inmates and census rules,
communities of need see their citizens (and consequent resources) removed and
transferred to other, more economically advantaged, primarily white
communities. The Prison Industrial Complex disrupts not just the
communities from which inmates come, but also the communities to which
they are "relocated" for the purposes of incarceration. For example, in States like New York State
whole communities left with few human and social capital resources. In fact

with a large rural land mass, and many parts of Mississippi, itself a largely rural state, are excellent spots for the prison building boom. Despite seeming to be

what these places share is that they are places where other
modes of sustenance industries have vanished (e.g., farming, textiles, meat
packing etc). Economically depressed, local residents in these states, and
others, see one thing and one thing only: jobs. What they don't see are the many pitfalls of having a prison
nearby. One of these is the displacing of the resident economic base, many of which are in agriculture but also service . The American
Criminal Justice System (multi-layered, composed of public and private bureaucracies, and racially segregated at the top levels of
management) has unleashed an unprecedented movement towards harsh, longterm incarceration on American citizens (but also overseas in such ghouls as the Abu Ghraib military prison (20)) to
punish them for breaking laws, not to rehabilitate the transgressors. But primarily to exploit their labor and
extract their surplus value. This is especially apparent when we recall the fact that 40-50% of inmates are serving long sentences,
geographically disparate,

sometimes life sentences for what Haney and Zimbardo note is little more than untreated addition. Due to harsh new sentencing guidelines, such as 'three-strikes,

a disproportionate number of young Black and Hispanic men are

likely to be imprisoned for life under scenarios in which they are guilty of
little more than a history of untreated addiction and several prior drugrelated offenses... States will absorb the staggering cost of not only constructing additional prisons to accommodate increasing numbers of
you're out,'

prisoners who will never be released but also warehousing them into old age. (Haney & Zimbardo, 1998:718) We add to this by returning to the framework

inmates housed into old age, but they have suddenly been
identified and re-constituted as the latest, greatest captive group who's
labor can be exploited. And, while inmates may see small benefits associated with the opportunities for labor that are created , as
the inmates at Twin Rivers Correctional Facility so eloquently articulate, the
PIC is a complex system that is not about rehabilitating inmates but is about
making money for a host of national and multinational corporations. Private prison
provided by Erik O. Wright. Not only are

corporations, such as CCA, make money by housing prisons and "leasing" their labor to the multi-national corporations that make money and see soaring profits by
paying below market wages to inmates who labor for them.

Discourse focus trades of with action devolves into endless
Rene Francisco Poitevin 1, PhD Cand Sociol @ UC-Davis (The end of anti-capitalism
as we knew it: Reflections on postmodern Marxism, The Socialist Review)
The End of Capitalism (As We Knew It) begs another question: Who are they
going after? Is it capitalism or is it Marx? Their book spends so much time on what is
supposedly wrong with Marxism that at times it reads more like The End of Marxism As
We Knew It. This approach is typical of a pattern that, to quote Wendy Brown,
"responds less to the antidemocratic forces of our time than to a ghostly
philosophical standoff between historically abstracted formulations of
Marxism and liberalism. In other words, this effort seeks to resolve a problem in a
(certain) history of ideas rather than a problem in history."19 Simply put, postmodern
Marxist politics has more to do with the micropolitics of the ivory tower
than with the plight of the workers who clean their campuses. However, once it
becomes clear that a necessary condition for the primacy of postmodern theory and
politics is that Marxism has to go (otherwise you do not have to become a postmodern to
address their concerns), J.K. Gibson-Graham's anti-Marxist hostility, while actively
embracing the Marxist label in order to render it useless, makes a lot of sense. And once
again, all this is done with impeccable logic: Given that Marxism is still the only
doctrine that calls for the systematic overthrow of capitalism, getting rid of
Marx(ism) is also to get rid of the need for revolution with a big "R."20 One
of the problems with trying to make the case for postmodern Marxism is
that in order to get rid of Marxism and declare its tradition obsolete, you have
to distort its legacy by constructing a straw man. This straw man-reading of Marx is
predicated upon the double maneuver of collapsing Marxist history into Stalinism, on
the one hand, and reducing Marxist theory to "essentialism," "totality," and "teleology,"
on the other. As J.K. Gibson-Graham themselves acknowledge, without any regrets,
"Indeed, as many of our critics sometimes charge, we have constructed a 'straw man.'"21
What is left out of their quasi-humorous dismissal of Marxism is the complicity of such a
straw man in the long history of red-baiting and anti-Marxist repression in this country
and around the world. Also left out is the rich Marxist scholarship that was addressing
their concerns long before there was a postmodern Marxist school. The fact is that
postmodern Marxist's "contributions" are not as original nor as profound as
they might have us believe. For example, what about the bulk of the Western Marxist
tradition since the Frankfurt School? Has it not been predicated on a rejection of the
economic reductionism embedded in the passage from the Preface to the Introduction to
A Critique of Political Economy in which the (in)famous base/superstructure metaphor
of society gets set in stone as the "official" definition of historical materialism? Or what
about Horkheimer and Adorno's relentless critique of instrumental rationality?
Marxism, in spite of what the postmodern Marxists want us to believe, has long been
making the case for the centrality of culture and its irreducibility to
economic laws, as anybody who has read Walter Benjamin or Antonio Gramsci can
certify. Furthermore, postcolonial Marxism and critical theory have also been theorizing
at more concrete levels of analyses the irreducibility of subjectivity to class.22 And
despite the postmodern Marxist excitement when talking about class as a
relational process, in fact it is impossible to tell that they are not the first

ones to talk about class as a relational process, lots of Marxists before the
Amherst School have been theorizing and clarifying the relational mechanisms
embedded in class politics.23 Postmodern Marxism also ignores Lefebvre's urban
Marxist contribution: his emphasis on the importance of experience and the
everyday in accounting for social processes.24 And Marxist feminist
contributions on the intersection of agency and gender with race, class, and sexuality are
conveniently erased from J.K. Gibson-Graham's reduction of Marxism to a straw man.25
The fact is that when one looks at Marxism not as a distorted "straw man" but on its own
terms, taking into account its richness and complexity, Marxist theory starts to
appear all of a sudden less "totalizing," "essentializing," and "reductionist"
and instead as more rich in possibilities and more enabling. A third feature of
J.K. Gibson-Graham's work, in particular, and of the whole radical democracy tradition,
in general, is its post-structuralist extremism.26 For postmodern Marxists it is not
enough to point out that, as both Foucault and Habermas argue, we inhabit an
intellectual regime characterized by a paradigm shift from the "philosophy of
consciousness" to the "philosophy of language."27 Nor is it good enough for
postmodern/post-Marxists to recognize the pitfalls embedded in Hegelian epistemology
and argue instead, as Spivak does, for strategic-- uses-of-essentialism as a corrective to
the excesses of teleological thinking and fixed notions of class.28 No way. As far as
postmodern Marxism is concerned, the only way to compensate for
constructions of capitalism that are too totalizing is through the unconditional
surrender of the Marxist project. As J.K. Gibson-Graham themselves make clear,
"to even conceive of 'capitalism' as 'capitalisms' is still taking 'capitalism' for granted."29
And to try to redistribute the heavy theoretical and political burden placed
upon the proletariat by reconfiguring political agency through "race-classgender," as opposed to just class, is still a futile endeavor: essentialism is
still essentialism whether one essentializes around one or three categories.
This strand of post-structuralism, one that once again, can be directly traced
back to Laclau and Mouffe's Hegemony and Socialist Strategy,30 is predicated on the
faulty epistemological premise that what really matters is "discourse." As
Laclau and Mouffe clarify, "our analysis rejects the distinction between discursive and
nondiscursive practices. It offirms that every object is constituted as an object of
discourse."31 The problem with this approach is that once we enter this world of
epistemological foundationalism predicated on the claim that there is "nothing but
discourse," we enter a world of relativism in which all we can do is "create discursive
fixings," as J.K. Gibson-Graham themselves prescribe, that will guarantee that "any
particular analysis will never find the ultimate cause of events."32 It is this ideological
postmodern insistence on reducing all of social reality to discourse that
ultimately overloads its theoretical apparatus and causes it to buckle beneath
them. The Amherst School's "provisional ontology" is incapable of escaping the
performative trap of trying to get rid of essentialism by essentializing all of reality as
"discursive." The postmodern Marxist approach to ontology boils down to substituting in
political practice every occurrence of "continuity" with "discontinuity" as a way to get rid
of essentialism and macro-narratives. Even Foucault, the great master of discontinuity,
distances himself from such mirror-reversal solutions when theorizing the limits of
discourse and accounting for the "divergence, the distances, the oppositions, the
differences" that constitute the episteme of a period.33

Capitalism comes firstthe alternative reveals individuals must confront the social
system collectively or risk being confined to isolated difference prisons that perpetuate
the status quo.

Starting at Islamophobia guarantees the continuation of global
neoliberalism the aff diagnoses the problem wrong their author
Kundnani 14 (Professor of Terror Studies and Media @ NYU & John Jay College, in an
interview with Brandon Jordan, 12/26/14, Interview: Author Arun Kundnani on How
Media Promote Radicalization Myths & Fuels Islamophobia,, JHR)
What we need to do is find a way to give people a different kind of political framework to
interpret the issues and grievances they have. At the moment, if you are angry about U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East,
there are not many people addressing it in a radical, passionate way. You go to these violent fundamentalists since they are really speaking to that. We need
to create alternatives so there are other kinds of politics out there that can attract young
people who feel angry about these issues and give them a different way to think about
that is not bound up in this militarized, harden identity politics. Rather, it goes deeper
into understanding what is behind a lot of this stuff, in which capitalism and
imperialism works. But not doing that using the framework of identity politics

Capitalism uniquely entrenches Islamophobia hundreds of years of

empirics prove
Kumar and Jay 14 (Deepa, Associate Professor of Media Studies and Middle Eastern
Studies at Rutgers University, Paul, senior editor at the real news, 10/15/14,
Islamophobia and the Politics of Empire - Deepa Kumar on Reality Asserts Itself,
option=com_content&task=view&id=31&Itemid=74&jumival=12527, JHR)
there isn't one long
stream of hatred between East and West in the clash of civilizations. Even during
the time of the Crusades, you found different attitudes among Christians and Jews who lived
in Al-Andalus. And then you see a complete dying down of these attitudes around 13th, 14th
century. The rise of nationalism creates different attitudes, different enemies, and so on. And, in fact, there's great admiration
for the Ottomans, because the Ottomans, compared to Europe--and remember, Europe is just coming out of the
Dark Ages, and they see this really advanced civilization, incredible political administrative system, and they want
to be like them. They consider the Ottomans to be Europeans of a sort. But what happens is that once the Ottomans are
defeated, in Vienna, for instance, and once they start to go into decline economically and
politically compared to Europe, where you see the rise of capitalism and technology
and so on, that's when there is the reemergence of these ideas , because there's
a sense in which Europeans are superior, and therefore the white man's burden is to go off and vanquish these barbaric people.
JAY: So when does Islamophobia rear its head again in a serious way? KUMAR: So the story that I tell in the book is that

JAY: And start colonizing the areas that were part of the Ottoman Empire. KUMAR: Exactly. And so Edward Said, whose book Orientalism really charts the
process by which

a systematic body of knowledge is created to justifying empire, to justify European

, you've got to dehumanize those who you will either colonize or enslave.

colonialism--. JAY: Yeah

KUMAR: Absolutely.

Capitalism controls the root cause of their impacts - Islamophobia was

created to justify the failures of neoliberalism
Wheel 14 (Emory Wheel, Emory student newspaper, 11/4/14, Islamophobia Stoked by
Neoliberal Idealogy,, JHR)

the ideological framework of the neoliberal state predefines the

process of the construction of such a marginalized identity . Terrorism, for
example, is a neologism, a notion created by the neoliberal governments to excuse an
already-failed war to gain control of territories and fight the enemies of Western
democracy, yet Muslims cannot escape this accusation of enmity or of being a terrorist or a Jihadist,
leaving them in a long-run resistance against the negative, false consciousness of the government that criminalizes their existence . This reasoning
by the forces of neoliberalism is lethally dangerous for grouping a diverse religion under
the perception that Islam itself breeds terrorism.
Nevertheless, one must not forget that

Islamophobia isnt about identity its a social construct that only

the alt can challenge
Tutt, 13 (Daniel, Ph.D. in philosophy and Documentary Film Producer, fellow at the
Institute of Social Policy, citing Keepa Kumar and Stephen Sheehi, Huffington Post,
"How Should We Combat Islamophobia?,", JHR)
In this model, Islamophobia is not understood as a fear cultural of otherness, but as a political campaign that is tied to American power and

, Islamophobia is
understood as a symptom of American power and imperial interests,
particularly the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq since 9/11, and the bloated security state that
discursive processes that subject Muslims to the power of the state and other interests. In this model

followed from 9/11. Stephen Sheehi sees the origin of Islamophobia in the rise of neoconservative think tanks following the cold war,
specifically propagated by public intellectuals such as Bernard Lewis and the media commentators, such as Fareed Zakaria, who espouse his

. Islamophobia is not about Islam as an identity, rather it is a construct

that cuts across party lines and is propagated by the global elite to maintain
the agenda of global capitalism. In Sheehi's framework, Islamophobia began on the ashes of Orientalism, and


found its sprouting and coming into being inside the Beltway think tanks. Similarly, we find in Deepa Kumar's text,"Islamophobia and the
Politics of Empire," a situating of Islamophobia as a symptom of American imperial wars and engagement in Iraq and Afghanistan. The

large international coalitions should be formed to

advocate for international justice through solidarity with other
marginalized groups, and issues such as poverty eradication, Occupy Wall
Street, and so on. Kumar points out that since 9/11, more than 700,000 Muslims have been interviewed by the FBI, which means that
implication for both Sheehi and Kumar are that

nearly 50 percent of all Muslim households have been touched by the FBI's "investigations" into Muslims.

Islamophobia grew out of notions of western technological rationality

Grosfoguel 10 (Ramon, Associate Professor in the Department of Ethnic Studies at
University of California Berkeley, Fall 2010 Epistemic Islamophobia and Colonial Social
article=1380&context=humanarchitecture, JHR)
If we follow the logic of Weber to its final consequences, that is, that Muslims are irrational and fatalistic people, then no serious knowledge can come from them.
What are the geopolitics of knowledge involved in Weber 's epistemic racism about Muslim people? The geopolitics of knowledge is the German and French

. For Weber, it is only the Christian

tradition that gives rise to economic rationalism and, thus, to Western modern
capitalism. Islam cannot compare to the "superiority" of Western values in that it lacks individuality,
rationality and science. Rational science and, its derivative, rational technology are, according to Weber,
unknown to oriental civilizations. These statements are quite problematic. Scholars such as Saliba (2007) and Graham (2006) have
demonstrated the influence of scientific developments in the Islamic World on the West, modern science and modern philosophy. Rationality was a
central tenet of the Islamic civilization. While Europe was in obscurantist feudal superstition during what is known as the Middle
orientalists' epistemic Islamophobia that is repeated in Weber's verdict about Islam

Orientalist views
of Islam reproduce an epistemic Islamophobia where Muslims are incapable of producing science and of having rationality,
Ages, the school of Baghdad was the world center of intellectual and scientific production and creativity. Weber's and Weberians'
despite the historical evidence.

Claims that race and gender discrimination cannot be explained
by production are depoliticizing and normalize capital even if
these inequalities are based in culture they are part of a
historical superstructure that is organized around the means of
production. Only the alternative provides the political tools to
dismantle this structure.
Tumino 01 (Stephen Tumino, Really Hardcore Marxist, What is Orthodox Marxism
and Why it Matters Now More Than Ever Before, Red Critique vol. 1, wcp)
Any effective political theory will have to do at least two things: it will have to offer an
integrated understanding of social practices and, based on such an interrelated
knowledge, offer a guideline for praxis. My main argument here is that among all contesting social
theories now, only Orthodox Marxism has been able to produce an integrated knowledge of
the existing social totality and provide lines of praxis that will lead to building a society
free from necessity. But first I must clarify what I mean by Orthodox Marxism. Like all other modes and forms of
political theory, the very theoretical identity of Orthodox Marxism is itself contestednot just from non-and anti-Marxists
who question the very "real" (by which they mean the "practical" as under free-market criteria) existence of any kind of
Marxism now but, perhaps more tellingly, from within the Marxist tradition itself. I will, therefore, first say what I regard
to be the distinguishing marks of Orthodox Marxism and then outline a short polemical map of contestation over
Orthodox Marxism within the Marxist theories now. I will end by arguing for its effectivity in bringing about a new society
based not on human rights but on freedom from necessity. I will argue that to know contemporary societyand to be able
to act on such knowledgeone has to first of all know what makes the existing social totality .

I will argue that the

dominant social totality is based on inequalitynot just inequality of power
but inequality of economic access (which then determines access to health care, education, housing,
diet, transportation, . . . ). This systematic inequality cannot be explained by gender, race,
sexuality, disability, ethnicity, or nationality. These are all secondary
contradictions and are all determined by the fundamental contradiction of
capitalism which is inscribed in the relation of capital and labor. All modes of
Marxism now explain social inequalities primarily on the basis of these secondary contradictions and in doing soand this
is my main argumentlegitimate capitalism. Why? Because

such arguments authorize capitalism

without gender, race, discrimination and thus accept economic inequality as an integral
part of human societies. They accept a sunny capitalisma capitalism beyond capitalism .
Such a society, based on cultural equality but economic inequality, has always been the
not-so-hidden agenda of the bourgeois leftwhether it has been called "new left,"
"postmarxism," or "radical democracy." This is, by the way, the main reason for its
popularity in the culture industryfrom the academy (Jameson, Harvey, Haraway, Butler,. . . ) to
daily politics (Michael Harrington, Ralph Nader, Jesse Jackson,. . . ) to. . . . For all, capitalism is here to
stay and the best that can be done is to make its cruelties more tolerable, more humane.
This humanization (not eradication) of capitalism is the sole goal of ALL contemporary lefts
(marxism, feminism, anti-racism, queeries, . . . ). Such an understanding of social
inequality is based on the fundamental understanding that the source of wealth is human
knowledge and not human labor. That is, wealth is produced by the human mind and is
thus free from the actual objective conditions that shape the historical relations of labor
and capital. Only Orthodox Marxism recognizes the historicity of labor and its
primacy as the source of all human wealth. In this paper I argue that any emancipatory theory
has to be founded on recognition of the priority of Marx's labor theory of value and not repeat the technological
determinism of corporate theory ("knowledge work") that masquerades as social theory. Finally, it is only Orthodox
Marxism that recognizes the inevitability and also the necessity of communismthe necessity, that is, of a society in which
"from each according to their ability to each according to their needs" (Marx) is the rule.

The only way to effectively challenge racist institutions is a unified struggle against class
all other methods fail your evidence
Kundnani 14 (Professor of Terror Studies and Media @ NYU & John Jay College, in an
interview with Brandon Jordan, 1/16/15, Interview: Author Arun Kundnani on
Understanding Terrorism, the Surveillance State & How to Discuss
Reform,, JHR)
KUNDNANI: Thats a part of it. Firstly, the mainstream terrorism studies tend to avoid defining terrorism very precisely, which means you dont look at state

terrorism than the culture or

if you focus on the culture that produces, youll then get
into all of these arguments about some kind of culture of religious
extremism that communities have problems with. I think the bigger kind of distinction in a way
terrorism. Secondly, it often tries to identify something like a terrorism mindset. Its not so much focused on the act of
psychology that produces it. Particularly,

though is between non-state actors and state and structural violence. Mainstream terrorism studies focuses entirely on non-state actors and

When you use the word violence, it is not easy to

define. If you want to have a consistent and objective definition of violence,
you have to include the structure violence of an economic system like
capitalism, which puts millions of people in poverty, struggling with hunger
or lack shelter. That is also a kind of violence. JORDAN: Connecting accumulation by dispossession with the
racial component of it. You want more resources and youre going to do anything to get
it. KUNDNANI: Yeah, I would say capitalism is always going to be bound up with
structural violence . What youre doing with a capitalist system is putting
profits over people; therefore, someones well-being and health can be
dispensed with in the name of profit . JORDAN: This discussion today reminds me of a quote by Martin
wont use the word terrorism for anything else.

Luther King Junior. In his Beyond Vietnam speech on April 4, 1967, he said something worth repeating in this day and age: I am

. We
must rapidly begin the shift from a thing-oriented society to a personoriented society. When machines and computers, profit motives
and property rights are considered more important than people, the giant
triplets of racism, materialism, and militarism are incapable of being
conquered. There seems to be a strong connection with the overall capitalist
system and the Islamophobia seen in the West. Deepa Kumar, a Rutgers University Professor,
convinced that if we are to get on the right side of the world revolution, we as a nation must undergo a radical revolution of values

elaborated on the importance of a structure for mass surveillance on The Real News [last October]. I suppose my question is then, is this

Martin Luther King, by the time he gives his speech in 1967, comes to
understand the issue of racism hes been dealing with is connected to a
wider system. It is the same system that caused the Vietnam War and causes
poverty across the U.S. We have to constantly go back and forth to thinking
about the specific issues were immediately concerned with, whether its
Islamophobia or surveillance, but also look at the bigger picture and how theses
fully ingrained into our system? KUNDNANI:

issues connect together. So how does Islamophobia connect with the oppression of women? How does the policing issue in Ferguson

The only way we can deal with these issues is

by linking them together , seeing the connections and having an
understanding that we need a movement that brings different
constituencies each affected by the system in specific ways. Some notion of
capitalism or neoliberalism is the only way to unite all of these issues
together and seeing them connected.
connect with the U.S. bombing in Iraq and Syria again?

Root Cause

Capitalism is the root cause of oppression, especially
contemporary racism our kritik is a prerequisite to the aff
McLaren et al., 4 Distinguished Professor, Critical Studies, Chapman University
(Peter and Valerie Scatamburlo-DAnnibale, Class Dismissed? Historical materialism
and the politics of difference, Educational Philosophy and Theory, Vol. 36, No. 2, April,

For example, E. San Juan (2003) argues that race relations and race conflict are
necessarily structured by the larger totality of the political economy of a given society, as
well as by modifications in the structure of the world economy. He further notes that the
capitalist mode of production has articulated race with class in a peculiar way. He too is
worth a substantial quotation: While the stagnation of rural life imposed a racial or
castelike rigidity to the peasantry, the rapid accumulation of wealth through the ever
more intensifying exploitation of labor by capital could not so easily racialize the wageworkers of a particular nation, given the alienability of labor-powerunless certain
physical or cultural characteristics can be utilized to divide the workers or render one
group an outcast or pariah removed from the domain of free labor. In the capitalist
development of U.S. society, African, Mexican, and Asian bodiesmore precisely, their
labor power and its reproductive efficacywere colonized and racialized; hence the idea
of internal colonialism retains explanatory validity. Race is thus constructed
out of raw materials furnished by class relations, the history of class
conflicts, and the vicissitudes of colonial/capitalist expansion and the building of
imperial hegemony. It is dialectically accented and operationalized not just to
differentiate the price of wage labor within and outside the territory of the metropolitan
power, but also to reproduce relations of dominationsubordination invested with an
aura of naturality and fatality. The refunctioning of physical or cultural traits as
ideological and political signifiers of class identity reifies social relations. Such racial
markers enter the field of the alienated labor process, concealing the artificial nature of
meanings and norms, and essentializing or naturalizing historical traditions and values
which are contingent on mutable circumstances. For San Juan, racism and nationalism
are modalities in which class struggles articulate themselves at strategic points in
history. He argues that racism arose with the creation and expansion of
the capitalist world economy. He maintains, rightly in our view, that racial or
ethnic group solidarity is given meaning and value in terms of their place within the
social organization of production and reproduction of the ideological-political order;
ideologies of racism as collective social evaluation of solidarities arise to reinforce
structural constraints which preserve the exploited and oppressed position of these
racial solidarities. It is remarkable, in our opinion, that so much of contemporary
social theory has largely abandoned the problems of labor, capitalist exploitation, and
class analysis at a time when capitalism is becoming more universal, more ruthless and
more deadly. The metaphor of a contemporary tower of Babel seems appropriate here
academics striking radical poses in the seminar rooms while

remaining oblivious to the possibility that their seemingly radical

discursive maneuvers do nothing to further the struggles against
oppression and exploitation which continue to be real, material, and
not merely discursive problems of the contemporary world (Dirlik, 1997, p.
176). Harvey (1998, pp. 2931) indicts the new academic entrepreneurs, the masters of
theory-in-and-for-itself whose discourse radicalism has deftly side-stepped the
enduring conundrums of class struggle and who have, against a sobering background of
cheapened discourse and opportunistic politics, been stripped of their self-advertised
radicalism. For years, they contested socialism, ridiculed Marxists, and promoted their
own alternative theories of liberatory politics but now they have largely been reduced to
the role of supplicants in the most degraded form of pluralist politics imaginable. As
they pursue the politics of difference, the class war rages unabated and they seem
either unwilling or unable to focus on the unprecedented economic carnage
occurring around the globe. Harvey's searing criticism suggests that postMarxists have been busy fiddling while Rome burns and his comments echo those made
by Marx (1978, p. 149) in his critique of the Young Hegelians who were, in spite of their
allegedly world-shattering statements, the staunchest conservatives. Marx lamented
that the Young Hegelians were simply fighting phrases and that they failed to
acknowledge that in offering only counter-phrases, they were in no way combating the
real existing world but merely combating the phrases of the world. Taking a cue from
Marx and substituting phrases with discourses or resignifications we would contend
that the practitioners of difference politics who operate within exaggerated culturalist
frameworks that privilege the realm of representation as the primary arena of political
struggle question some discourses of power while legitimating others. Moreover, because
they lack a class perspective, their gestures of radicalism are belied by their own class
positions.10 As Ahmad (1997a, p. 104) notes: One may speak of any number of
disorientations and even oppressions, but one cultivates all kinds of politeness and
indirection about the structure of capitalist class relations in which those oppressions are
embedded. To speak of any of that directly and simply is to be vulgar. In this climate of
Aesopian languages it is absolutely essential to reiterate that most things are a matter of
class. That kind of statement is surprising only in a culture like that of the North
American university But it is precisely in that kind of culture that people need to hear
such obvious truths. Ahmad's provocative observations imply that substantive analyses
of the carnage wrought by globalized class exploitation have, for the most part, been
marginalized by the kind of radicalism that has been instituted among the academic Left
in North America. He further suggests that while various post-Marxists have invited us
to join their euphoric celebrations honoring the decentering of capitalism, the
abandonment of class politics, and the decline of metanarratives (particularly those of
Marxism and socialism), they have failed to see that the most meta of all metanarratives
of the past three centuries, the creeping annexation of the globe for the dominance of
capital over laboring humanity has met, during those same decades, with stunning
success (Ahmad, 1997b, p. 364). As such, Ahmad invites us to ask anew, the proverbial
question: What, then, must be done? To this question we offer no simple theoretical,
pedagogical or political prescriptions. Yet we would argue that if social change is the aim,
progressive educators and theorists must cease displacing class analysis with the politics
of difference. Conclusion we will take our stand against the evils [of capitalism,
imperialism, and racism] with a solidarity derived from a proletarian internationalism
born of socialist idealism. National Office of the Black Panther Party, February 1970

For well over two decades we have witnessed the jubilant liberal and conservative
pronouncements of the demise of socialism. Concomitantly, history's presumed failure to
defang existing capitalist relations has been read by many self-identified radicals as an
advertisement for capitalism's inevitability. As a result, the chorus refrain There Is No
Alternative, sung by liberals and conservatives, has been buttressed by the symphony of
post-Marxist voices recommending that we give socialism a decent burial and move on.
Within this context, to speak of the promise of Marx and socialism may appear
anachronistic, even nave, especially since the post-al intellectual vanguard has
presumably demonstrated the folly of doing so. Yet we stubbornly believe that the chants
of T.I.N.A. must be combated for they offer as a fait accompli, something which
progressive Leftists should refuse to acceptnamely the triumph of capitalism and its
political bedfellow neo-liberalism, which have worked together to naturalize suffering,
undermine collective struggle, and obliterate hope. We concur with Amin (1998), who
claims that such chants must be defied and revealed as absurd and criminal, and who
puts the challenge we face in no uncertain terms: humanity may let itself be led by
capitalism's logic to a fate of collective suicide or it may pave the way for an alternative
humanist project of global socialism. The grosteque conditions that inspired Marx to pen
his original critique of capitalism are present and flourishing. The inequalities of wealth
and the gross imbalances of power that exist today are leading to abuses that exceed
those encountered in Marx's day (Greider, 1998, p. 39). Global capitalism has paved the
way for the obscene concentration of wealth in fewer and fewer hands and created a
world increasingly divided between those who enjoy opulent affluence and those who
languish in dehumanizing conditions and economic misery. In every corner of the globe,
we are witnessing social disintegration as revealed by a rise in abject poverty and
inequality. At the current historical juncture, the combined assets of the 225 richest
people is roughly equal to the annual income of the poorest 47 percent of the world's
population, while the combined assets of the three richest people exceed the combined
GDP of the 48 poorest nations (CCPA, 2002, p. 3). Approximately 2.8 billion people
almost half of the world's populationstruggle in desperation to live on less than two
dollars a day (McQuaig, 2001, p. 27). As many as 250 million children are wage slaves
and there are over a billion workers who are either un- or under-employed. These are the
concrete realities of our timerealities that require a vigorous class analysis, an
unrelenting critique of capitalism and an oppositional politics
capable of confronting what Ahmad (1998, p. 2) refers to as capitalist
universality. They are realities that require something more than that which is offered by
the prophets of difference and post-Marxists who would have us relegate socialism to
the scrapheap of history and mummify Marxism along with Lenin's corpse. Never before
has a Marxian analysis of capitalism and class rule been so desperately needed. That is
not to say that everything Marx said or anticipated has come true, for that is clearly not
the case. Many critiques of Marx focus on his strategy for moving toward socialism, and
with ample justification; nonetheless Marx did provide us with fundamental insights into
class society that have held true to this day. Marx's enduring relevance lies in his
indictment of capitalism which continues to wreak havoc in the lives of most. While
capitalism's cheerleaders have attempted to hide its sordid underbelly, Marx's
description of capitalism as the sorcerer's dark power is even more apt in light of
contemporary historical and economic conditions. Rather than jettisoning Marx,
decentering the role of capitalism, and discrediting class analysis, radical educators must
continue to engage Marx's oeuvre and extrapolate from it that which is useful

pedagogically, theoretically, and, most importantly, politically in light of the challenges

that confront us.

Alternative Solvency

Boring Politics
Radical theory is inaccessible to most people and directly trades
off with resistance empirics prove
Frank, 12 PhD, History, University of Chicago and Political Analyst (Thomas, To the
Precinct Station, Baffler, No. 21,

What I object to is the opposite: high-powered academic disputation as a model for

social protest. Why does the subject of Occupy so often inspire its admirers to reach for
their most elevated jargonese? Why would certain Occupiers break from the action to
participate in panel discussions? Why did others choose to share their protest
recollections in the pages of American Ethnologist and their protest sympathies in the
Journal of Critical Globalisation Studies? Why would the author of an (admittedly very
interesting) article about drum circles feel the need to suggest that he is contributing to
scholarly literature? Why would a pamphlet clearly intended as a sort of Common
Sense for the age of Occupy be filled with declarations such as this: Our point of attack
here is the dominant forms of subjectivity produced in the context of the current social
and political crisis. We engage four primary subjective figuresthe indebted, the
mediatized, the securitized, and the representedall of which are impoverished and their
powers for social action are masked or mystified. Movements of revolt and rebellion, we
find, provide us the means not only to refuse the repressive regimes under which these
subjective figures suffer but also to invert these subjectivities in figures of power. And
dear god why, after only a few months of occupying Zuccotti Park, did Occupiers feel
they needed to launch their own journal of academic theory? A journal that then
proceeded to fill its pages with impenetrable essays seemingly written to demonstrate,
one more time, the Arctic futility of theory-speak? Is this how you build a mass
movement? By persistently choosing the opposite of plain speech? Yes, I know the
answer: For a protest to become a broader social movement it must analyze and
strategize and theorize. Well, this one did enough theorizing for all the protests of the
last forty years, and yet it somehow never managed to make the grade. Occupy did lots of
things right: It had a great slogan and a perfect enemy and it captured the public
imagination. It built a democratic movement culture. It reached out to organized labor, a
crucial step in the right direction. It talked a lot about solidarity, the basic virtue of the
Left. But in practice, academic requirements often seemed to come first. OWS was taken
as a proving ground for theory. Its ranks werent just filled with professionals and
professionals-to-be; far too often the campaign itself appeared to be an arena for
professional credentialing. Actually, thats an optimistic way of putting it. The
pessimistic way is to open Michael Kazins recent book, American Dreamers, and take
sober note of the fact that, with the partial exception of the anti-apartheid campaign of
the eighties, no movement of the Left has caught on with the broad American public
since the Civil Rights / Vietnam War era. Oh, there have been plenty of leftists during
this period, of courseespecially in academia. Studying resistance is a well-worn
career path, if not the very definition of certain sub-disciplines. But for all its intellectual
attainments, the Left keeps losing. It simply cannot make common cause with ordinary

American people anymore. Maybe this has happened because the Left has come to be
dominated by a single profession whose mode of operating is deliberately abstruse,
ultrahierarchical, argumentative, and judgmentalhanding down As and Fs is its daily
choreand is thus the exact opposite of majoritarian. Maybe it has happened because
the Left really is a place of Puritanical contempt for average people, almost all of whom
can be shown to have sinned in some imperialist way or other. Maybe it is because the
collapse of large-scale manufacturing makes social movements obsolete. We do not
know. And none of the accounts under review here get us any closer to an answer.

Concrete political demands are key to resistance despite the

wrongdoings of the state their vain protests replicate Tea Party
Frank, 12 PhD, History, University of Chicago and Political Analyst (Thomas, To the
Precinct Station, Baffler, No. 21,

Leaderlessness is another virtue claimed by indignados on the right as well as left. In

fact, theres even a chapter in the 2010 Tea Party manifesto written by Dick Armey that
is entitled, We are a Movement of Ideas, Not Leaderswhich is ironic, since Armey is
commonly referred to as Leader Armey, in recognition of the days when he was
majority leader of the U.S. House of Representatives. The reasoning, though, is the same
here as it is with Occupy. As Armey puts it, If they knew who was in charge, they could
attack him or her. They could crush the inconvenient dissent of the Tea Party.
Occupiers, of course, say pretty much the same thing: if you have leaders, they can be coopted. Surely, though, the distinctive Occupy idea that protesting is an end in itselfthat
the process is the messagesurely that is unique, right? After all, Occupiers and their
chroniclers have spent so much brainpower theorizing and explicating and defending the
idea that horizontalism is a model and a demand and a philosophy rolled into one that it
cant possibly be shared by their political opposite. But of course it iswith the theory
slightly modified. We call this complex and diverse movement beautiful chaos, writes
Leader Armey in his Tea Party manifesto. By this we reference what is now the
dominant understanding in organizational management theory: decentralization of
personal knowledge is the best way to maximize the contributions of people. While the
glorious decentralization of OWS was supposed to enact some academic theory of spacecreating, the glorious decentralization of the Tea Party enacts the principles of the
market; it enacts the latest in management theory; it enacts democracy itself. Biggovernment liberals, on the other hand, are in Armeys account drawn to hierarchy as
surely as are the big-media dumbshits scorned by Occupys chroniclers: They cant
imagine an undirected social order, Armey declares. Someone needs to be in charge.
Armeys coauthor, Matt Kibbe, then grabs this idea and gallops downfield. This is not a
political party, he insists; it is a social gathering. Tea Party events dont have drum
circles, as far as I know, but Kibbe nevertheless says he is reminded of the sense of
community you used to experience in the parking lot before a Grateful Dead concert:
peaceful, connected, smiling, gathered in common purpose. It is a revolt from the
bottom up, he declares. It is a community in the fullest sense of the word. If you look

closely enough at Tea Party culture, you can even find traces of the
Occupiers refusal to make explicit demands. Consider movement inamorata Ayn
Rand (a philosopher every bit as prolix as Judith Butler) and her 1957 magnum opus
Atlas Shrugged, where demands are something that government makes on behalf of its
lazy and unproductive constituents. Businessmen, by contrast, deal in contracts; they act
only via the supposedly consensual relations of the market. As John Galt, the leader of
the books capital strike, explains in a lengthy speech to the American people Rand
clearly loathed: We have no demands to present to you, no terms to bargain about, no
compromise to reach. You have nothing to offer us. We do not need you. A strike with
no demands? Wha-a-a-a? Why not? Because demands would imply the legitimacy of
their enemy, the state. Rands fake-sophisticated term for this is the sanction of the
victim. In the course of actualizing himself, the business tycoonthe victim, in Rands
distorted worldviewis supposed to learn to withhold his blessing from the society that
exploits him via taxes and regulations. Once enlightened, this billionaire is to have
nothing to do with the looters and moochers of the liberal world; it is to be adversarial
proceedings only. So how do Rands downtrodden 1 percent plan to prevail? By building
a model community in the shell of the old, exactly as Occupy intended to do. Instead of
holding assemblies in the park, however, her persecuted billionaires retreat to an
uncharted valley in Colorado where they practice perfect noncoercive capitalism,
complete with a homemade gold standard. A high-altitude Singapore, I guess. Then,
when America collapsesan eventuality Rand describes in hundreds of pages of quasipornographic detailthe tycoons simply step forward to take over. One last similarity.
The distinctive ideological move of the Tea Party was, of course, to redirect the publics
fury away from Wall Street and toward government. And Occupy did it too, in a more
abstract and theoretical way. Consider, for example, the words anthropologist Jeffrey
Juris chooses when telling us why occupying parks was the thing to do: the occupations
contested the sovereign power of the state to regulate and control the distribution of
bodies in space [five citations are given here], in part, by appropriating and resignifying
particular urban spaces such as public parks and squares as arenas for public assembly
and democratic expression [three more citations]. This kind of rhetoric is entirely
typical of both Occupy and the academic Leftalways fighting the state and its infernal
power to regulate and controlbut it doesnt take a very close reading of the text to
notice that this language, with a little tweaking, could also pass as a libertarian protest
against zoning. Since none of the books described here take seriously the many obvious
parallels between the two protests, none of them offers a theory for why the two were so
strikingly similar. Allow me, then, to advance my own. The reason Occupy and the Tea
Party were such uncanny replicas of one another is because they both drew on the lazy,
reflexive libertarianism that suffuses our idea of protest these days, all the way from
Disney Channel teens longing to be themselves to punk rock teens vandalizing a
Starbucks. From Chris Hedges to Paul Ryan, every dissenter imagines that they are
rising up against the state. Its in the cultural DNA of our times, it seems; our rock n
roll rebels, our Hollywood heroes, even our FBI agents. They all hate the state
protesters in Zuccotti Park as well as the Zegna-wearing traders those protesters think
theyre frightening. But heres the rub: only the Right manages to profit from it.

Engaging the state is key to disrupt neoliberal hegemony

ideology is insufficient to effect change
Goldmann, 13 MA, Political Economy, University of Auckland (Bartek, Social
Movements and Contestation in Post-Crisis Capitalism: A Case Study of Syriza, New
Zealand Sociology, Vol. 28, No. 3, 120-121,

The global financial crisis has manifested itself in a variety of ways in different locations
and around the world, producing a variety of protest and social movements on a massive
scale not seen since the late 1960s. The contemporary politics of the street and the
square are timely mobilizations against financial shocks, the commodification of public
services, reckless consumerism, rising levels of public and private debt, and a widespread
perception of malfunctioning democracy and elite-driven politics. In occupying squares
and other public spaces, the multitudes engaged in these new politics contest the claim
that there is no alternative and in doing so, create a voice for themselves by refusing to
engage with the fake conflicts constructed by neoliberal hegemony. Contestation and
protest are necessary elements of democracy and civic participation, since the electoral
process (institutional politics) has proven itself to be an insufficient vehicle for class
struggle, and requires additional pressure from below (non-institutional politics). The
two are both necessary and interrelated. Resistance to economic orthodoxy in the postcrisis era is a pressing urgency since governments dogmatically pursuing structural
adjustment are doing away with basic democratic rights and whittling away the welfare
statethe hard-won products of a long series of struggles. This essay argues that we
must step back from particular theoretical frameworks and concepts of resistance since
they have very real ramifications on politics and protest movements, in some cases
inhibiting their potential. The contemporary left, infatuated with anarchist
ideology, has developed an allergy to the idea of taking state power and is
hesitant to consider the state as a site of political contestation. Furthermore, there
appears to be an emerging tendency among todays activists to fetishise the processual
aspects of democracy (selforganization and horizontal, open-networks, assemblies where
all participants are free to voice their concerns) at the cost of enduring political gains.
This trend shall be demonstrated through the case of the Occupy Wall Street movement
(OWS) which refrained from directly engaging with the state apparatus, and instead
opted to occupy space on its peripheries, a strategy which was ultimately ineffective in
shaking the hegemony of neoliberal economics. In response, this essay will conceptualise
a more suitable theoretical perspective by analysing Syriza, a Greek radical leftist party.
Syriza is the exception to the aforementioned trend because it demonstrates that if social
movements are to fulfil their aims and induce political change that is not only
meaningful but durable, they ought to make strategic associations with the state
apparatus rather than neglect it as a site of struggle. Syriza is in that sense the
counterpoint to OWS. This is not to say that egalitarian self-organisation at the street
level is a bad thing, however it is a recognition of the fact that if social movements are to
contest the social effects of the crisis and generate outcomes for large numbers of their

populations, for example by means of public policy, they must develop from mere
carnival and into enduring aspects of their respective societies.

Leftist impulsiveness and rejection of institutions like the state

foreclose the possibility of tangible change
Goldmann, 13 MA, Political Economy, University of Auckland (Bartek, Social
Movements and Contestation in Post-Crisis Capitalism: A Case Study of Syriza, New
Zealand Sociology, Vol. 28, No. 3, 123-125,

From this perspective then, what is necessary is a type of resistance that is based on free
forms of association, and whose teleological end-point is stateless society. Since statepower is doomed, revolutionary social movements should withdraw from politics since it
has become (or perhaps always was) a corrupt theatre of domination and pursue
transformation through non-institutional avenues. As Thomas Frank points out, activists
involved OWS as well as the Tea Party, have been sensitive to anything they perceived as
elitism or unnecessary hierarchy, adding that bureaucracy, routine and boredom are
no way to fire the imagination of the world (Frank, 2012). Todays activists seem to
exhibit an aversion to state power and to authority in general; vanguardism and
leadership are defined as the problem, and hierarchy is identified as the opposite of
creativity. They prefer to occupy spaces at the peripheries of the state (parks and other
public commons), and to directly transform the texture of social life in an organic
manner. The reasoning is that it is these everyday practices of cohabitation and
deliberation that sustain the entire social structure. Such were some of the foremost
concerns of the Occupiers of Zuccotti Park. However in retreating to the peripheries
outside of the administrative ambit of the state, and by levelling their critique primarily
at a cultural-discursive level, the protestors fail to engage the state-capital nexus directly
on the planes that really matter: ownership over the means of production, consumption,
environment etc. The left has a tendency to become impulsive and enamoured
by the transformative potential of anything that promises radical social
change, and risks falling into an infantile radicalism (Saad-Filho, 2013). With
all the capacity for incisive and penetrating critique, it appears to be completely unable
to put itself under the microscope and recognize the enchanting fantasies and ideological
mystifications that structure its own field of vision. Witness the enthusiasm with which
so many narrated OWS and the Arab Spring as unprecedented and ground-changing
events, for example David Harveys speech at Occupy London (Harvey, 2011). No doubt,
it is difficult to not be enthralled by the potential of such a mobilization after a prolonged
period of economic recession and political inertia. It would appear that the
transformative potential of the movements, the Evental symbolism which has inspired
people in distant locations, is at the same time hamstringing the prospects for
actual political gains and change that is durable and entrenched in civil society. A
buzz-kill like iek is sometimes completely necessary to burst the bubble: We have a
nice time. But remember, carnivals come cheap. What matters is the day after, when we
will have to return to normal lives. Will there be any changes then? (iek, 2011). His

remarks to the OWS campers are even more relevant now than before. In the following
section I will identify and demonstrate the tendencies in Greek society that might
provide a realistic, politically attractive alternative to the current post-democratic inertia
and the prospect of another decade of austerity, which certain politicians and economic
pragmatists claim to be the only viable solution. This will be done by overviewing
Syrizas politics and noting its position on two key topics: its economic programme, and
its role towards the European Monetary Union (EMU).

Institutional engagement to achieve radical goals provides focus

to resistance but doesnt necessitate ceding personal agency to
the state
Goldmann, 13 MA, Political Economy, University of Auckland (Bartek, Social
Movements and Contestation in Post-Crisis Capitalism: A Case Study of Syriza, New
Zealand Sociology, Vol. 28, No. 3, 131-132,

In examining Syrizas history and development, I demonstrated a case of political

engagement with existing state and political structures that combines the potential of
street movements with the authority of parliamentary politics. Social movements that
are organised this way are able to mutually reinforce the political agency of
individual subjects as well as the institutionalised groups they form. Syriza is the
counter-example to the trend of political disengagement from the state which has been
present within recent protest movements such as OWS. Many of the movements that
emerged in the USA and around Western Europe in 2011 carried with them a hope that
they would develop into something of a contemporary 68, a counter-hegemonic
movement to be reckoned with that could eventually instigate a broader social
transformation. Through the example of OWS, this essay argued that for the most part
they have failed in this, and that a significant cause for this outcome has been the
movements anarchistic ideology, its organizational structure and consequent lack of
focus. That being said, this essay does not intend to be dismissive of the new political
culture that is emerging on the streets and squares around the world, but rather
recognizes it as the ideological basis or precondition for a society which gives a voice to
the excluded and inexistent, those who exist socially but not politically. Writing in the
context of the struggles of the late 1960s, Herbert Marcuse points out that it would be
irresponsible to overrate the chances for transformation (Marcuse, 1969: ix). What he
said still pertains today: critical theory should refrain from making utopian
speculations about todays mass movements but instead analyse existing societies in
light of their own capabilities, and to identify and demonstrate the tendencies (if any
exist) which might lead beyond the current state of affairs. To write these movements off
as hopeless, utopian or unrealistic leads to cynical resignation to the status quo and
merely reinforces the ruling ideology. On the one hand the political desires for change
that so many on the left have placed their hopes in are the multitudes constitutive
driving force, the creativity and enthusiasm which has given these movements their
character and hopeful tone, in a context where pragmatic political leaders stress the

reality principle of austerity. At the same time, for purely practical reasons, if these
movements are to achieve any practical gains, the thinly-veiled class warfare of austerity
politics demands that we continue to be engaged in the struggle, while maintaining a
critical distance to the romantic spectacle of the square.

Specific concrete actions through the regulatory state are

necessary for resistance against neoliberal ills
Peck & Tickell, 94 Research Chair, Urban and Regional Political Economy and
Professor, Geography, University of British Columbia AND Professor, Department of
Geography, Royal Holloway, University of London (Jamie and Adam, Jungle Law
Breaks out: Neoliberalism and Global-Local Disorder, Area, Vol. 26, No. 4, December,

If as we have argued neoliberalism is socially, economically and geographically

unsustainable, the search for an after-Fordist institutional fix continues. We maintain
that a coherent fix is a necessary, but in itself insufficient, prerequisite for the restoration
of sustainable accumulation. It must meet the following minimum requirements. First, it
must prevent the regulatory undercutting that is becoming a feature of national and
regional competition (see Leyshon 1992), which renders regional economies vulnerable
to the vagaries of capital and undermines social contracts. Second, it must mitigate and
contain uneven development, which both disenfranchises poor regions and places
unsustainable pressures on growth areas. Thirdly, it must have the capacity to control
the global financial system, perhaps the defining feature of the Bretton-Woods
settlement. Fourthly, and most importantly, it must be sustainable in social and
ecological as well as economic terms. This calls for putative solutions based at different
spatial scales. Many of these will require regional, national and supra-national cooperation. Local strategies have a role, but this must be within a supportive national and
supra-national framework. Local development cannot and should not be the concern of
local people alone; nor should it be seen as the remedy for all social and economic ills. It
needs to be embodied in a larger policy framework that includes supra-local
considerations and objectives, as well as links with supra-local actors. Local development
does not imply the deactivation of higher levels of governance; it does not mean simple '
decentralization ' in the sense of replacing national level organization of govern ment
with local. Rather, it means developing local policies to complement national ones as
part of coordinated, multi-tiered approach . . . Resource inputs need to be supplied both
locally and from higher levels. Otherwise, there is a strong risk of highly uneven and
unequal development among regions and areas (Sengenberger 1993, 324, 327). Local
strategies will not realise their potential if they are formulated in the context of the selfdestructive processes of beggar-thy-neighbour competition and regulatory undercutting.
As long as neoliberalism prevails-with its emphasis on competitive relations,
individualism and the fast buck-sustainable growth will be difficult to attain. In the
continuing disorder of the after-Fordist crisis, localities' place in the sun is likely to be
increasingly short-lived. Attracting growth may be difficult, keeping it will prove harder
still. In the face of systemic instability at the level of the global economy, claims that a
new global-local order has emerged seem premature, not to say misfounded. The nation-

state may have been eroded from above and from below, but the nature of this erosion
has been different in each case. Below the nation-state, local regulatory systems
(particularly local states) have been conferred responsibility without power: regulatory
responsibilities have been handed (or have drifted, as they have been shunned by nationstates) down from the nation-state level, but localities can wield little in the way of
political-economic power in the context of globalising accumulation and global
deregulation. Above the nation-state, supra-national regu latory systems have inherited
power without responsibility: remaining wedded to a neoliberal agenda, they continue to
fuel global economic instability with apparent disregard for its damaging effects on
national and local economies and its pernicious ecological and social consequences.
Workable after-Fordist regulatory ' solutions ' at the national or local scales are unlikely
to stabilise until there is a truce between the ' hostile brothers '. The pressing need, then,
is for a new supra-local regulatory framework. Of course, we are not suggesting that
some Bretton Woods II would provide the solution to the world's problems, that it would
guarantee sustainable growth, but it would be at least a start. It would provide a basis for
halting the neoliberal spiral of regulatory degradation. Global financial institutions, then,
must be harnessed and reformed, a process which will require concerted action
through nation-states. It is consequently important that the nation-state is
not written off as a site in this regulatory struggle (see Gertler 1992), for this is
likely to remain the principal scale at which democratic control and political power can
be (re)coupled. True, the nation-state may have become ' hollowed out ' during the afterFordist crisis, but a resolution to this crisis may-perhaps must-involve some degree of '
filling in ' of the nation-state in order to effect a stabilisation of local-local and localglobal regulatory relations. Solutions to the crisis of uneven development in afterFordism are unlikely to come from the bottom-through local competition-but instead
must begin with action from above-through national and global co-ordination.

Anti-captialist education in places like debate is crucial to the development
of political struggles race is an integral part of these struggles the alts
starting point of classism is bad
Kelsh 10 (Deborah, Associate Progessor in the Department of Teacher Education at the
College of Saint Rose, Class in Education: Knowledge, Pedagogy, subjectivity,
%20subjectivity&f=false, JHR) Part 5: the role of education In contemporary societies, we are in many ways being
globally miseducated. The Bush and Blair administrations propaganda war about
weapons of mass destruction, aimed at masking New Imperialist designs and capitals
global quest for imperial hegemony and oil, is a key example. Conditioning the discourse is only half the story.
Education has become a key component in the profit-making process itself.
Tied to the needs of global, corporate capital, education worldwide has been reduced to
the creation of a flexible workforce, the openly acknowledged, indeed lauded (by both capitalists
and politicians) requirement of todays global markets (Cole 2007). Corporate global capital is in schools, both in the sense of determining the curriculum and

Education should,
McLaren argues, following Paulo Freire, put social and political analysis of
everyday life at the center of the curriculum (McLaren 2003: xxix). Racism
should be a key component in such an analysis. Following through the thrust of this chapter, we argue that, in order
for racism to be understood, and, in order for strategies to be developed to undermine it,
there is a need first to reintroduce the topic of imperialism in British schools; second to initiate
exercising burgeoning control of schools as businesses. An alternative vision of education is provided by Peter McLaren.

in schools a thorough analysis of the manifestations of xeno-racism and xeno-racialization. We will deal with each in turn. The reintroduction of the teaching of

Reintroducing the teaching of imperialism in schools, we believe, would be

far more effective than CRT in increasing awareness of racism, and crucially linking
racism to capitalist modes of production. British imperialism was taught for a number of years in British schools in ways that
imperialism in schools10

exalted the Empire (e.g. Cole and Blair 2006). If we are to return to the teaching of imperialism, past and present, with integrity in British schools and universities,
the syllabus must, we would argue, incorporate a critical analysis of the actual events of imperialism themselves. In addition to this, we would argue for the
implementation without delay of the following further inputs to the curriculum. First, we believe that it is helpful for todays students to understand how British
imperialism was taught in the past, and why. This will enable them to make connections between the treatment meted out to those in the colonies and the
experiences of Asian, black and other minority ethnic communities in Britain from World War II onwards. Second, and allied to the above, students need media
awareness. They need the critical faculties to critique pro-British imperialist and/or racist movies and/or TV series, still readily available in the age of multiple
channel, digital TV. They also need to be able to understand manifestations of nationalism, racism, xeno-racism and xenophobia, such as that engendered and
fostered by the media hype surrounding popular events, such as international football where nationalism is implicated in the coverage. Third, at a national level,
students are entitled to a critical awareness of how British imperialism relates to and impacts on racism and racialization, both historically and in the present. The
curriculum should include contemporary racism directed at both the Asian, and the black, and other minority ethnic communities, encompassing both seemingly

students will
need skills to evaluate the New Imperialism and the permanent war being waged by the
United States with the acquiescence of Britain. Boulang (2004) argues that it is essential at this time, following the
positive but potentially racist images of black people (e.g. in the media, pertaining to popular music and sport). Fourth, at a global level,

inauguration of the Bush and Blair war on terror, and Islamophobia worldwide reaching new heights, for teachers to show solidarity with Muslims, for this will
strengthen the unity of all workers, whatever their religion (Boulang 2004: 24), and this will have a powerful impact on the struggle against racism in all spheres
of society, and education in particular. In turn, this will strengthen the confidence of workers and students to fight on other issues. According to neoconservative
Niall Ferguson (2003): Empire is as cutting edge as you could wish [It] has got everything: economic history, social history, cultural history, political history,
military history and international history not to mention contemporary politics (just turn on the latest news from Kabul). Yet it knits all these things together
with a metanarrative. (n. p.) For Marxists, an understanding of the metanarrative of imperialism, past and present, does much more than this. Indeed, it
encompasses but goes beyond the centrality of racial liberation in CRT theory. It takes us to the crux of the trajectory of capitalism from its inception right up to
the twenty-first century, and this is why Marxists should endorse the teaching of imperialism, old and new. Of course, the role of education in general, and teaching
about imperialism in schools in particular, has its limitations and young people are deeply affected by other influences and socialized by the media, parents/carers,
and by peer culture (hence the aforementioned need for media awareness). The question of reintroducing in the British education system a historically all-sided
evaluation of imperialism presents a choice: that between a continued enslavement by an ignorance of Britains imperial past, or an empowered acknowledgment

Unlike Marxism,
CRT does not explain why Islamophobia, the war on terror and other
forms of racism are necessary to keep the populace on task for permanent war
and the accumulation of global profits. The manifestations of xeno-racism and xeno-racialization Marxism most clearly connects
of it. Such awareness would also begin a process of understanding the New Imperialism currently being waged in earnest.

provides an explanation for xeno-racism and xenoracialization. While CRT certainly reminds us that racism is central in sustaining the current world order, and that we must listen to the voices of
people oppressed on grounds of racism, it does not and cannot make the necessary connections to understand and
challenge this racism. Indeed its advocacy of white supremacy as an explanatory
metanarrative is counter-productive, particularly, we would argue, in the school and university context, in the struggle against
the Old and New Imperialisms with capitalism. It also

racism. Xeno-racism and xeno-racialization in the UK and the rest of Europe need to be understood in the context of the origins of the EU, and globalization
generally. With respect to the EUs current enlargement, connections need to be made between the respective roles of (ex-)imperial citizens in the immediate postWorld War II period, and migrant workers from Eastern Europe today (both sources of cheap labor). An analysis of the way in which the media portrays asylumseekers and refugees on the one hand, and migrant workers on the other, would also foster an awareness of the processes of xeno-racism and xeno-racialization.
Education does not have a merely institutional dimension; it is also about formal and non-formal self-education, resistance and struggle. According to Marxism, in
this collective struggle, education achieves its true potential and its ultimate emancipatory purpose with nothing less than the demise of global neoliberal
capitalism and imperialism, and its replacement by a new world order based on human need and not on corporate profit. Only then do the conditions exist for the
final eradication of racism and racialization.

Our method has better explanatory power for their impact

Kelsh 10 (Deborah, Associate Progessor in the Department of Teacher Education at the
College of Saint Rose, Class in Education: Knowledge, Pedagogy, subjectivity,
%20subjectivity&f=false, JHR)
Chapter 5 contests the valorization of race over class in discourses
that prioritize white supremacy, arguing that it limits the development of an
understanding of racism in relation to capitalist accumulation. In opposition to understanding racism in terms
of white supremacy, they argue that the Marxist concept of racialization has the capacity
to explain both the increase in Islamophobia in Britain, and also the existence of a
contemporary form of noncolor-coded racialization, what the authors, following Coles (see Chapter 5, 2004b)
Mike Cole and Alpesh Maisurias

theorization of it, call xeno-racialization. Both the increase in Islamophobia and the existence of xeno-racialization need to be understood in the context of changes

The Marxist concepts of racialization and xenoracialization and their

connections to class form the basis for their suggestions for an alternative vision of
in the capitalist mode of production.

The alt is a prior question we must engage in a universal
Valerie Scatamburlo-DAnnibale and Peter McLaren 3, *Associate professor in the
Department of Communication, Media and Film at the University of Windsor,
**Distinguished Professor in Critical Studies, College of Educational Studies, Chapman
University, Co-Director of the Paulo Freire Democratic Project, (The Strategic Centrality
of Class in the Politics of Race and Difference,
Kovel's remarks raise questions about the primacy given to class analysis and class
strugglea debate that continues unabated in most leftist circles. Con- trary to what
many have claimed, not all Marxian forms of class analysis rele- gate categories
of difference to the conceptual mausoleum. In fact, recent Marxist theory has
sought to reanimate them by interrogating how they are refracted through material
relations of power and privilege and linked to rela- tions of production. Marx himself
made clear how constructions of race and ethnicity are "implicated in the
circulation process of variable of capital." To the extent that "gender, race, and
ethnicity are all understood as social con- structions rather than as essentialist
categories," the effect of exploring their insertion into the "circulation of variable
capital (including positioning within the internal heterogeneity of collective labor and
hence, within the division of labor and the class system)" must be interpreted as a
"powerful force recon- structing them in distinctly capitalist ways" (Harvey,
2000, p. 106). Unlike contemporary narratives that tend to focus on one or another
form of oppres- sion, the irrefragable power of historical materialism resides
in its ability to reveal (a) how forms of oppression based on categories of
difference do not pos- sess relative autonomy from class relations but rather
constitute the ways in which oppression is lived/experienced within a classbased system and (b) how all forms of social oppression function within an
overarching capitalist system. This framework must be further distinguished from
those who invoke the terms classism and/or class elitism to (ostensibly) foreground the
idea that "class matters" (cf. hooks, 2000) because we agree with Gimenez (2001) that
"class is not simply another ideology legitimating oppression" (p. 24). Rather, class
denotes "exploitative relations between people mediated by their relations to the means
of production" (p. 24). To marginalize such an understanding of class is to conflate
individuals' objective locations in the intersection of struc- tures of inequality with
individuals' subjective understandings of how they are situated based on their
"experiences."7 Another caveat. We are not renouncing the concept of
experience. On the contrary, we believe that it is imperative to retain the
category of lived experience as a reference point in light of misguided postMarxist critiques that imply that all forms of Marxian class analysis are dismissive of
subjectivity. We are not, however, advocating the uncritical fetishization of "experience"
that tends to assume that personal experience somehow guarantees the authenticity of
knowledge and that often treats expe- rience as self-explanatory, transparent, and solely
individual. Rather, we advance a framework that seeks to make connections between
seemingly iso-lated situations and/or particular experiences by exploring how they are
consti- tuted in, and circumscribed by, broader historical and social conditions. They are

linked, in other words, by their "internal relations" (Oilman, 1993). Expe- riential
understandings, in and of themselves, are initially suspect because dia- lectically they
constitute a unity of oppositesthey are at once unique, spe- cific, and personal but also
thoroughly partial, social, and the products of historical forces about which individuals
may know little or nothing. A rich description of immediate experience can be
an appropriate and indispensable point of departure, but such an understanding
can easily become an isolated difference prison unless it transcends the immediate
perceived point of oppres- sion, confronts the social system in which it is rooted, and
expands into a com- plex and multifaceted analysis (of forms of social mediation) that is
capable of mapping out the general organization of social relations. That, however,
requires a broad class-based approach.

Rather than being a utopian theory, revolutionary anti-capitalist

pedagogy exposes the contradictions of capitalism and
galvanizes class consciousness for successful resistance
McLaren et al., 4 Distinguished Professor, Critical Studies, Chapman University
(Peter, Gregory Martin, Ramin Farahmandpur, and Nathalia Jaramillo, Teaching in and
against the Empire: Critical Pedagogy as Revolutionary Praxis, Teaching Education
Quarterly, Winter, 141-144,

Critical pedagogy is, of course, all about revolutionary ideas. Just as we need to explore
the way in which dominant ideas about capitalism are linked to their conditions of
production within the context of the dominant social class, we need to connect the
revolutionary ideas of critical pedagogy to the existence of a revolutionary class of
educators. These educators are preoccupied with questions such as: What are the
contradictions between prevailing notions of capitalist democracy and the manner in
which democracy is lived in the streets by social agents with competing class interests
and who exist within vastly different social conditions? We have found that in our own
classrooms, teachers from working-class backgrounds (often students of color) are the
most favorably disposed to critical pedagogy. Our work in critical pedagogy constitutes in
one sense the performative register for class struggle. Whilst it sets as its
goal the decolonization of subjectivity, it also emphasizes the development of critical
social agency while at the same time targeting the material basis of capitalist social
relations. Critical educators seek to realize in their classrooms social values and to
believe in their possibilities consequently we argue that they need to go outside of the
protected precincts of their classrooms and analyze and explore the workings of capital
there. Critical revolutionary pedagogy sets as its goal the reclamation of public life under
the relentless assault of the corporatisation, privatization and businessification of the
lifeworld (which includes the corporate-academic-complex). It seeks to make the
division of labor coincident with the free vocation of each individual and the association
of free producers. At first blush this may seem a paradisiacal notion in that it posits a
radically eschatological and incomparably other endpoint for society, as we know it.
Yet this is not a blueprint but a contingent utopian vision that offers

direction not only in unpicking the apparatus of bourgeois illusion

but also in diversifying the theoretical itinerary of the critical
educator so that new questions can be generated along with new perspectives in which
to raise them. Here the emphasis not only is on denouncing the manifest injustices of
neo-liberal capitalism and serving as a counterforce to neoliberal ideological hegemony,
but it is also on establishing the conditions for new social arrangements that transcend
the false opposition between the market and the state. In contrast to postmodern
education, revolutionary pedagogy emphasizes the material
dimensions of its own constitutive possibility and recognizes
knowledge as implicated within the social relations of production (i.e.,
the relations between labor and capital). We are using the term materialism here not in
its postmodernist sense as a resistance to conceptuality, a refusal of the closure of
meaning, or whatever excess cannot be subsumed within the symbol or cannot be
absorbed by tropes; rather, materialism is being used in the context of material social
relations, a structure of class conflict, and an effect of the social division of labor (Ebert,
2002). Historical changes in the forces of production have reached the point where the
fundamental needs of people can be met but the existing social relations of production
prevent this because the logic of access to need is profit based on the value of peoples
labor for capital. Consequently, critical revolutionary pedagogy argues that
without class analysis, critical pedagogy is impeded from effecting
praxiological changes (changes in social relations). We need to learn not only how
to educate, but how to be educated in terms of ripening class antagonisms. Teachers
disqualify themselves from historical struggle when they fail to locate their own
formation as educators within the degenerative process of contemporary capitalist
society and the enduring and intractable classdriven social arrangements: to wit, within
the agonistic arena of class struggle. As the science of the inherent contradictions of
capitalism, Marxism in our view enables capitalism to be uncovered in all of its protean,
complex materiality and is in a singular position to uncover the ontological dimension of
capitalism by beginning with the real, messy world of everyday social life. Marxism helps
to critique suprahistorical theory that severs its connections to the material work of
social struggle. Marxism is grounded in the contextual specificity of the global universe
of capital in which we find ourselves today, where we are witnessing the
internationalization of antagonism between exploiters and producers, where
globalization is presided over by a ruling class of individuals with proprietary rights over
the means of production; where power, wealth, and income are not allocated fairly;
where the capitalist class increasingly extracts unpaid labor time from the direct
producers, the workers and peasants; where neoliberalism is disarticulating the social
base of the left, depotentiating it, by dividing the classes against each other. John
Holloway (2002) has made some interesting points with respect to Marxism. First, that
it is not a theory of society, but a theory against society; Marxism is not in the business of
providing a better social science but is mainly concerned with a critique of the bourgeois
social sciences (i.e., a critique of political economy) and with locating the fault lines or
weak points of the rule of capital. He notes rightly in our minds that Marxism is not
a theory of capitalist oppression but of the contradictions of that oppression. So that
Marxism is able to articulate the contradictory positions in which individuals and groups
are engaged. It is also able to locate the contradictions within the oppressive social
relations that are created by capitalist representatives and their organizations. Marxism
begins with the premise that everyday social life within capitalist society is contradiction-

ridden and Marxism highlights these contradictions and explores their origins and
effects in order to free us from the oppressions of everyday social relations, and in doing
so it provides us with a philosophy of praxis and a deep resolve in our participation in
anti-capitalist struggles. The Open Marxism of Holloway, and others, is essentially an
immanent critique, meaning that any social form of life, social relation, or institution is
both in and against forms of capitalist power. It explores the various social formations
that make up the unity of capitalist society, with particular attention given to those social
forms suppressed in capitalist society. In this sense, labor has the power of being
independent of capital, but only within non-capitalist societies. Marxists ask: What are
the origins and effects of living within the contradictions of capitalist society and what
are their implications for struggling against capital? Marxism provides an understanding
of the concrete, empirical, conditions of class struggle by elucidating capitalist social
relations within which class struggle can obtain and unfold. The contradictions within
capitalism provide a space for critique and transformation of the social relations that
create the contradictions. In these current times of deep divisions between the classes,
when the acerbity and virulence of the antagonisms between them has not grown less
intense, especially in recent years, we cannot afford to demote class struggle
to the category of socio-economic status, which drains the concept of class struggle of its
history within capitalist society and turns it into a synonym for a natural state in a
necessarily imperfect society underlain by principles of meritocracy. True, calling for the
abolition of capitalism in the United States is not realistic in the short term given the
current outlook and psychology of the working class. Only deluded sectarians could
possibly imagine that the road ahead is straight and narrow. But at the very least such
calls can expose the injustices of capitalism and help to galvanize
the fresh forces of the low paid, youth, and the growing ranks of the unemployed
who are increasingly being cast into the pit of pauperism.

Revolutionary pedagogy does not become a tool of oppression in

itself it instead spurs students to effectively struggle against
capitalist exploitation
McLaren et al., 4 Distinguished Professor, Critical Studies, Chapman University
(Peter, Gregory Martin, Ramin Farahmandpur, and Nathalia Jaramillo, Teaching in and
against the Empire: Critical Pedagogy as Revolutionary Praxis, Teaching Education
Quarterly, Winter, 149-151,

Our starting point is that socialism is not a discredited dream. It is a current that runs
through periods such as the menacing present and is animated by and in struggle against
all forms of oppression and exploitation. Whilst the anti-war movement will undoubtedly
have to overcome certain internal problems to grow much larger and to curb future wars
in Syria, Iran or Venezuela, what we are seeing today is the emergence of a completely
new quality of social consciousness that could provide the concrete basis for an
internationalist political movement (Bloom, 2003). What matters here is that against the
backdrop of U.S. imperialism, the only way students are ever going to win lasting peace
or the right to a decent education or job is through the linking of their struggles with all
the victims of the vicious ruling class, including workers whose blood, sweat and toil is

the living fuel that makes the economy run (Bloom, 2003; Rikowski, 2002). In creating
the conditions for social change, then, the best pedagogy recognizes the limits of
traditional pragmatist reformist pedagogical practice by prioritizing the need to
question the deeper problems, particularly the violent contradictions (e.g., the gap
between racism and the American Dream), under which students are forced to live. This
means confronting the anti-intellectual thuggery that pervades teacher education
programs, particularly the kind that rejects theory (the knowledge of totality)
(Zavarzadeh & Morton, 1994, p. 3). Acknowledging that capitalist education acts as a
drag on the development of critical or class consciousness by presenting a lifeless
world empty of contradictions, we argue for a Marxist theory of the big picture, which
enables people to translate their daily free-floating frustrations with the system into a
set of ideas, beliefs and practices that provide the basis not only for coherence and
explanation but also action (Zavarzadeh & Morton, 1994, p. 3). Against tremendous
odds, the challenge over the last several decades has been to humanize the classroom
environment and to create pedagogical spaces for linking education to the praxiological
dimensions of social justice initiatives and to that end we are indebted to critical
pedagogy. Yet, faced with the urgency for change, approaching social transformation
through the optic of revolutionary critical pedagogy ratchets up the struggle ahead.
Revolutionary critical pedagogy dilates the aperture that critical pedagogy has struggled
to provide teachers and students over the last several decades by further opening up the
pedagogical encounter to its embeddedness in globalized social relations of exploitation
and also to the revolutionary potential of a transnational, genderbalanced, multiracial, antiimperialist struggle . A revolutionary critical
pedagogy raises the following questions for consideration by teachers, students, and
other cultural workers: How can we liberate the use value of human beings from their
subordination to exchangevalue? How can we convert what is least functional about
ourselves as far as the abstract utilitarian logic of capitalist society is concerned our
self-realizing, sensuous, species-being into our major instrument of self-definition?
How can we make what we represent to capital replaceable commodities
subordinate to who we have also become as critical social agents of history? How can we
make critical self-reflexivity a demarcating principle of who we are and critical global
citizenship the substance of what we want to become? How can we make the cultivation
of a politics of hope and possibility a radical end in itself? How can we de-commodify our
subjectivities? How can we materialize our self-activity as a revolutionary force and
struggle for the self-determination of free and equal citizens in a just system of
appropriation and distribution of social wealth? How can we make and remake our own
nature within historically specific conventions of capitalist society such that we can make
this self-activity a revolutionary force to dismantle capitalism itself and create the
conditions for the development of our full human potential? How can we confront our
producers (i.e., social relations of production, the corporate media, cultural formations
and institutional structures) as an independent power? Completely
revolutionizing education does not depend upon the great white
men that capitalist education teaches us are our presidents, heroes and role models. It
relies upon the broad masses of people recognizing that the whole system is worthless
and must be transformed to reflect their interests. This is the strength of a revolutionary
critical pedagogy, that it is an orientation of fighting for the interests of the multi-racial,
gendered working class and indigenous peoples all the way through. It seeks to
transform schools into political and cultural centers, where crucial questions from

international affairs to education policy are debated and struggled over openly. It is a
pedagogy that not only conjures up the audacious urges of the oppressed but also enables
them to fight back against the systems repeated attacks by raising peoples
understanding of their political opponents and developing their organization and
fighting position. It is a call to battle, a challenge to change this monstrous
system that wages permanent warfare against the world and the
planet, from cost-effectiveness state terror in the homeland, to the dumping of toxic
chemicals on Native American lands and communities of color and the devastating
bombing campaigns against sovereign nations. It is a pedagogy of hope that is grounded
in the unfashionable reality, history, and optimism of oppressed peoples and nations
inside and outside of this country. It is a pedagogy against empire. Because of this, we
will settle for nothing less.

Only the alternatives revolutionary critical pedagogy against

capitalism can address exploitation that affs resistance
inevitably fails
McLaren et al., 4 Distinguished Professor, Critical Studies, Chapman University
(Peter, Gregory Martin, Ramin Farahmandpur, and Nathalia Jaramillo, Teaching in and
against the Empire: Critical Pedagogy as Revolutionary Praxis, Teaching Education
Quarterly, Winter, 139,

In the United States, critical pedagogy regrettably has limited itself to an essentially
liberal progressive educational agenda that encourages teachers to create communities
of learners in classrooms, to bridge the gap between student culture and the culture of
the school, to engage in cross-cultural understandings, to integrate multicultural content
and teaching across the curriculum, to develop techniques for reducing racial prejudice
and conflict resolution strategies, to challenge Eurocentric teaching and learning as well
as the ideological formations of European immigration history by which many white
teachers judge African-American, Latino/a, and Asian students, to challenge the
meritocratic foundation of public policy that purportedly is politically neutral and
racially color-blind, to create teacher-generated narratives as a way of analyzing teaching
from a transformative perspective, to improve academic achievement in culturally
diverse schools, to affirm and utilize multiple perspectives and ways of teaching and
learning, and to de-reify the curriculum and to expose metanarratives of exclusion. Lest
we appear overly dismissive of these achievements, we wish to affirm that these attempts
are welcomed, as far as they go, but that they do not go nearly far enough. In the face of
such a contemporary intensification of global capitalist relations and permanent
structural crisis (rather than a shift in the nature of capital itself), we need to develop a
critical pedagogy capable of engaging all of social life and not simply life inside school
classrooms. We need, in other words, to challenge capitalist social relations
whilst acknowledging global capitals structurally determined
inability to share power with the oppressed, its constitutive embeddedness
in racist, sexist, and homophobic relations, its functional relationship to xenophobic
nationalism, and its tendency towards empire. It means acknowledging the educational
lefts dependency on the very object of its negation: capital. It means struggling to

develop a lateral, polycentric concept of anticapitalist alliances-in-diversity in order to

slow down capitalisms metabolic movement with the eventual aim of shutting it down
completely. It means developing and advancing an educational philosophy that is
designed to resist the capitalization of subjectivity, a pedagogy that we have called (after
the British Marxist educator, Paula Allman, 2001) revolutionary critical
pedagogy. The key to resistance, in our view, is to develop a critical pedagogy that will
not only enable the multi-racial, gendered working class to discover how the usevalue of
their labor-power is being exploited by capital but also how working class initiative,
creativity and power can destroy this type of determination and force a recomposition of
class relations by directly confronting capital in all of its hydraheaded dimensions.
Efforts can be made to break down capitals control of the creation of new labor-power
and to resist the endless subordination of life to work in the social factory of everyday life
(Cleaver, 2000; see also Rikowski, 2001).

Capitalisms ruthless exploitation can only be dismantled by

revolutionary class analysis
Hill, 9 Professor, Education Policy, University of Northampton (Dave, Nigel M.
Greaves, Alpesh Maisuria, Does Capitalism Inevitably Increase Inequality?, Inequality
in Education: Comparative and International Perspectives, Vol. 24, 63-65,

In sum, there is a recognized need among Marxists: firstly, to restate the epistemic
foundation of Marxism; and, in so doing, secondly, to reclaim the authentic voice of the
left-wing critique of capitalist education practices and their ideological justification
though a class-based ontology (Hill 2008; Kelsh & Hill 2006). Restating Class For
Marxists, class is not an arbitrary or abstract concept. Rather, it is a verifiable feature of
certain human life processes. According to The German Ideology, written by Marx and
Engels in 1845-6, human society passed through different productive epochs and in each
there were opposing groups of people defined according to the objectively different
relationships they had to the means and products of material production. That is, in
every epoch, economic practices structure human society into classes with
diametrically opposed interests rooted in relations of ownership to the means of
production. These relations of ownership to the means of production constitute what
Marx calls the relations of production and this is an arena of perpetual tension and
struggle (1977, p.179). When the relations of production are combined with the forces of
production (factories, workplaces, plant, equipment and tools, and knowledge of their
use) we arrive at a mode of production or economic base (Marx 1977, pp.161, 168).
This productive infrastructure forms the organizational rationale and dynamic for
society in general and these are reflected in the social institutions (e.g., the state) that
spring up and become established in accordance with the needs of productive relations.
However, the techniques and technologies of production under capitalism dictate new
working practices which exert pressure for change. The institutions which attempt to
guard the existing relations of production from crises (principally the state) then begin,
precisely and contradictorily by attempting to guard those relations from crises to

obstruct the further development of the forces of production and eventually the
pressure of contradictions rooted in the class contradiction becomes
too great and the established institutions are transformed by
revolution. At that point, new social and political institutions appropriate to new
relations of production are developed, and these must accord with the further free
development of the material forces of production. The German Ideology constitutes
Marxs attempt to depart from the metaphysical abstraction of the Hegelian idealist
method and locate the motor of historical change in living, human society and its
sensuous processes. For later thinkers, such as Lenin, the significance of Marxs
transformation of dialectics is the identification of the concept of class struggle as the
essential historical dynamic. In any era, and most certainly in the capitalist, society is
locked in conflict, while the needs of a certain group in the productive process are always
subordinated to another. Marxists hold that this social conflict cannot be truly reconciled
with the source of its economic causation, and this perpetual tension is the seedbed of
revolution. The capitalist era is both typical of human history and at the same time
unique. It is typical in that its production techniques involve the exploitation of one
human being by another; nonetheless, it is unique in history in terms of its advancing
this principle to unprecedented levels of efficiency and ruthlessness .
For Marx, writing in the Preface to A Critique of Political Economy of 1859, known
simply as the Preface, the capitalist era marks the zenith of class struggle in history and
human exploitation cannot be taken further (1977, p.390). The only redeeming feature of
capitalism is its assembling its own social antithesis in the proletariat or working
class which is destined to rise up against the bourgeoisie (profiteering or ruling class)
and abolish class and exploitation and thus bring the prehistory of human society to a
close (1977, p.390). What do Marxists mean by capitalist exploitation? In the first
volume of Capital, Marx argues that workers are the primary producers of wealth due to
the expenditure of their labor in the production of commodities. However, the
relationship between the owners of the means of production (the employers) and the
workers is fundamentally exploitative since the full value of the workers labor power is
unreflected in the wages they receive. The difference between the value of the labor
expenditure and the sum the worker receives is known as surplus value, and this is
pocketed by the employer as profit. Marx saw surplus value as the distinguishing
characteristic and ultimate source of class and class conflict within the capitalist system
(Cuneo 1982, p.378). However, for Marx, surplus value is not merely an undesirable
side-effect of the capitalist economy; it is its motive force and the entire system would
readily collapse without it. Technically, while surplus value extraction is not wholly
unique, historically, all capitalist systems are characterized by it. Marx is thus able to
offer a scientific and objective definition of class in the capitalist epoch based on which
side of the social equation of surplus value one stands and to show, moreover, that this
economic arrangement is the fundamental source of all human inequality. Class is
therefore absolutely central to Marxist ontology. Ultimately, it is economically induced
and it conditions and permeates all social reality in capitalist systems. Marxists therefore
critique postmodern and post-structural arguments that class is, or ever can be,
constructed extra-economically, or equally that it can be deconstructed politically
an epistemic position which has underwritten in the previous two decades numerous socalled death of class theoriesarguably the most significant of which are Laclau &
Mouffe (1985) and Laclau (1996).


AT: Colorblindness
The alternative is not a form of colorblindness it simply uses
class analysis as a conceptual tool to explain how intersecting
modes of oppression, including racism, occur
McLaren et al., 4 Distinguished Professor, Critical Studies, Chapman University
(Peter and Valerie Scatamburlo-DAnnibale, Class Dismissed? Historical materialism
and the politics of difference, Educational Philosophy and Theory, Vol. 36, No. 2, April,

Contrary to what many have claimed, Marxist theory does not relegate categories of
difference to the conceptual mausoleum; rather, it has sought to reanimate
these categories by interrogating how they are refracted through
material relations of power and privilege and linked to relations of
production. Moreover, it has emphasized and insisted that the wider political and
economic system in which they are embedded needs to be thoroughly understood in all
its complexity. Indeed, Marx made clear how constructions of race and ethnicity are
implicated in the circulation process of variable capital. To the extent that gender, race,
and ethnicity are all understood as social constructions rather than as essentialist
categories the effect of exploring their insertion into the circulation of variable capital
(including positioning within the internal heterogeneity of collective labor and hence,
within the division of labor and the class system) must be interpreted as a powerful
force reconstructing them in distinctly capitalist ways (Harvey, 2000, p. 106). Unlike
contemporary narratives which tend to focus on one or another form of oppression, the
irrefragable power of historical materialism resides in its ability to reveal (1) how forms
of oppression based on categories of difference do not possess relative autonomy from
class relations but rather constitute the ways in which oppression is lived/experienced
within a class-based system; and (2) how all forms of social oppression
function within an overarching capitalist system. This framework must be
further distinguished from those that invoke the terms classism and/or class elitism to
(ostensibly) foreground the idea that class matters (cf. hooks, 2000) since we agree with
Gimenez (2001, p. 24) that class is not simply another ideology legitimating oppression.
Rather, class denotes exploitative relations between people mediated by their relations
to the means of production. To marginalize such a conceptualization of class is to
conflate an individual's objective location in the intersection of structures of inequality
with people's subjective understandings of who they really are based on their
experiences. Another caveat. In making such a claim, we are not renouncing the concept
of experience. On the contrary, we believe it is imperative to retain the category of lived
experience as a reference point in light of misguided post-Marxist critiques which imply
that all forms of Marxian class analysis are dismissive of subjectivity. We are not,
however, advocating the uncritical fetishization of experience that tends to assume that
experience somehow guarantees the authenticity of knowledge and which often treats
experience as self-explanatory, transparent, and solely individual. Rather, we advance a
framework that seeks to make connections between seemingly isolated situations and/or

particular experiences by exploring how they are constituted in, and circumscribed by,
broader historical and social circumstances. Experiential understandings, in and of
themselves, are suspect because, dialectically, they constitute a unity of oppositesthey
are at once unique, specific, and personal, but also thoroughly partial, social, and the
products of historical forces about which individuals may know little or nothing
(Gimenez, 2001). In this sense, a rich description of immediate experience in terms of
consciousness of a particular form of oppression (racial or otherwise) can be an
appropriate and indispensable point of departure. Such an understanding, however, can
easily become an isolated difference prison unless it transcends the immediate
perceived point of oppression, confronts the social system in which it is rooted, and
expands into a complex and multifaceted analysis (of forms of social mediation) that is
capable of mapping out the general organization of social relations. That, however,
requires a broad class-based approach. Having a concept of class helps us to see the
network of social relations constituting an overall social organization which both
implicates and cuts through racialization/ethnicization and gender [a] radical political
economy [class] perspective emphasizing exploitation, dispossession and survival takes
the issues of diversity [and difference] beyond questions of conscious identity such as
culture and ideology, or of a paradigm of homogeneity and heterogeneity or of ethical
imperatives with respect to the other. (Bannerji, 2000, pp. 7, 19) A radical political
economy framework is crucial since various culturalist perspectives seem to diminish
the role of political economy and class forces in shaping the edifice of the social
including the shifting constellations and meanings of difference. Furthermore, none of
the differences valorized in culturalist narratives alone, and certainly not race
by itself can explain the massive transformation of the structure of
capitalism in recent years. We agree with Meyerson (2000) that race is not an
adequate explanatory category on its own and that the use of race as a descriptive or
analytical category has serious consequences for the way in which social life is presumed
to be constituted and organized. The category of racethe conceptual framework that
the oppressed often employ to interpret their experiences of inequality often clouds the
concrete reality of class, and blurs the actual structure of power and privilege. In this
regard, race is all too often a barrier to understanding the central role of class in
shaping personal and collective outcomes within a capitalist society (Marable, 1995, pp.
8, 226). In many ways, the use of race has become an analytical trap precisely when it
has been employed in antiseptic isolation from the messy terrain of historical and
material relations. This, of course, does not imply that we ignore racism
and racial oppression; rather, an analytical shift from race to a
plural conceptualization of racisms and their historical articulations
is necessary (cf. McLaren & Torres, 1999). However, it is important to note that
race doesnt explain racism and forms of racial oppression . Those
relations are best understood within the context of class rule, as Bannerji, Kovel,
Marable and Meyerson implybut that compels us to forge a conceptual shift in
theorizing, which entails (among other things) moving beyond the ideology of
difference and race as the dominant prisms for understanding exploitation and
oppression. We are aware of some potential implications for white Marxist criticalists to
unwittingly support racist practices in their criticisms of race-first positions articulated
in the social sciences. In those instances, white criticalists wrongly go on high alert in
placing theorists of color under special surveillance for downplaying an analysis of
capitalism and class. These activities on the part of white criticalists must be condemned,

as must be efforts to stress class analysis primarily as a means of creating a white

vanguard position in the struggle against capitalism. Our position is one that attempts to
link practices of racial oppression to the central, totalizing dynamics of capitalist society
in order to resist white supremacist capitalist patriarchy more fully.7 We have argued
that it is virtually impossible to conceptualize class without attending to the forms and
contents of difference, but we insist that this does not imply that class struggle is now
outdated by the politics of difference. As Jameson (1998, p. 136) notes, we are now in the
midst of returning to the most fundamental form of class struggle in light of current
global conditions. Today's climate suggests that class struggle is not yet a thing of the
past and that those who seek to undermine its centrality are not only morally callous
and seriously out of touch with reality but also largely blind to the needs of the large
mass of people who are barely surviving capital's newly-honed mechanisms of globalized
greed (Harvey, 1998, pp. 79). In our view, a more comprehensive and politically useful
understanding of the contemporary historical juncture necessitates foregrounding class
analysis and the primacy of the working class as the fundamental agent of change.8 This
does not render as secondary the concerns of those marginalized by race, ethnicity, etc.
as is routinely charged by post-Marxists. It is often assumed that foregrounding
capitalist social relations necessarily undermines the importance of attending to
difference and/or trivializes struggles against racism, etc., in favor of an abstractly
defined class-based politics typically identified as white. Yet, such formulations rest on
a bizarre but generally unspoken logic that assumes that racial and ethnic minorities are
only conjuncturally related to the working class. This stance is patently absurd since the
concept of the working class is undoubtedly comprised of men and women of different
races, ethnicities, etc. (Mitter, 1997). A good deal of post-Marxist critique is subtly racist
(not to mention essentialist) insofar as it implies that people of color could not possibly
be concerned with issues beyond those related to their racial or ethnicdifference. This
posits people of color as single-minded, one-dimensional caricatures and assumes that
their working lives are less crucial to their self-understanding (and survival) than is the
case with their white male counterparts.9 It also ignores the fact that class is an
ineradicable dimension of everybody's lives (Gimenez, 2001, p. 2) and that social
oppression is much more than tangentially linked to class background and the
exploitative relations of production. On this topic, Meyerson (2000) is worth quoting at
length: Marxism properly interpreted emphasizes the primacy of class in a number of
senses. One of course is the primacy of the working class as a revolutionary agenta
primacy which does not render women and people of color secondary. This view
assumes that working class means whitethis division between a white working class
and all the others, whose identity (along with a corresponding social theory to explain
that identity) is thereby viewed as either primarily one of gender and race or hybrid
[T]he primacy of class means that building a multiracial, multi-gendered international
working-class organization or organizations should be the goal of any revolutionary
movement so that the primacy of class puts the fight against racism and sexism at the
center. The intelligibility of this position is rooted in the explanatory primacy of class
analysis for understanding the structural determinants of race, gender, and class
oppression. Oppression is multiple and intersecting but its causes are
not. The cohesiveness of this position suggests that forms of exploitation and
oppression are related internally to the extent that they are located in the same totality
one which is currently defined by capitalist class rule. Capitalism is an overarching

totality that is, unfortunately, becoming increasingly invisible in post-Marxist discursive

narratives that valorize difference as a primary explanatory construct.

Only the alternative can effectively restructure institutions away from
Islamophobia theres no net benefit to the perm and the idea that class is
just another ism that you can should talk about misses the mark
Ledwith 13 (Sean, Lecturer in History and Politics at York College, reviewing Deepa
Kumars book, Kumar is an Associate Professor at Rutgers, 1/10/13, Counterfire,
Islamophobia and the Politics of Empire,, JHR)
The history of capitalism is also the history of racism . In the nineteenth century, Karl Marx
drew attention to how this mode of production systematically divided the
oppressed as one of its principal means of survival. In his exile in Britain, he noted how antiIrish sentiment was intentionally generated by the ruling elite as an
ideological weapon to be used to divide and rule the working class: The
ordinary English worker hates the Irish worker as a competitor who lowers his
standard of life. In relation to the Irish worker he regards himself as a member of
the rulingnation and consequently he becomes a tool of the English
aristocrats and capitalists against Ireland, thus strengthening their domination over himself. He cherishes religious, social, and
national prejudices against the Irish worker. This antagonism is artificially kept alive and intensified by
the press, the pulpit, the comic papers, in short, by all the means at the disposal of the ruling
classes. This antagonism is the secret of the impotence of the English working class, despite its organisation. It is the secret by which
the capitalist class maintains its power.[1] Later waves of Jewish, Afro-Caribbean, Asian and
East European migrants would similarly be subjected to vicious
discrimination and stereotyping, as the capitalist class sought out new victims for targeted racism. Deepa
Kumars Islamophobia and the Politics of Empire is a comprehensive study of the systems most recent choice of political scapegoat
for its failings; the worlds one billion Muslims. Taking her cue from the red scare persecution of the American left in the aftermath of

labels this latest phase of capitalist paranoia, the green scare.

The title indicates the materialist nature of her analysis of this issue.
Islamophobia is best understood as the ideological response of a series of
Western empires starting with the Crusader kingdoms of feudal Europe,
right up to the exercise of Obamas so-called soft power today: anti-Muslim
racism has been primarily a tool of the elite in various societies (p.3). The starting
World War One, she

point for her analysis is, unsurprisingly, the 9/11 attacks. She recounts how on that infamous day a colleague at her university in New Jersey
shouted at her, Are you happy?, assuming that her South Asian appearance indicated she must have supported the bombers (p.1). Later the
same day, a checkout clerk insisted she apologise for the attacks before he served her. With impressive presence of mind, she asked if he
was equally willing to apologise for the Oklahoma City bombing six years earlier, carried out by Christian fundamentalist, Timothy
McVeigh! The daily reality of this form of ignorance faced by Muslims is her launch-pad for a wide-ranging and incisive historical survey of
how the West has distorted and suppressed the real story of its interaction with Islam over fourteen centuries. More specifically, Kumar
explains how the US since 9/11 has manufactured a War on Terror as an ideological device for legitimating its global hegemony. US foreign
policy since 9/11 has partly been informed by a group of neo-con historians who have devised a simplistic narrative of inevitable conflict
between Islam and the West stretching back to the origins of the faith in the seventh century CE. Samuel Huntingtons The Clash of
Civilisationsis the best known of these accounts. Books such as this were the ideological basis for the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq as well

Kumar dissects the myth of a long-running

religious struggle between East and West by highlighting how both
geographical regions have witnessed the flourishing of apparently alien
cultures within them. The most advanced civilisation in the West for several
centuries was the Islamic Umayyad dynasty in Spain. The latter was crucially responsible for the
as domestic attacks on Muslims and Arabs (p.130).

translation and study of classical texts from antiquity that contributed to the Renaissance in the early modern period: Intellectually,

Europe owes a debt of gratitude to scholars in the Near East (p.13).

The book then recounts how the rise of capitalism in the early modern era
enabled Europe to overtake the Islamic states of the Middle East, so that, by the nineteenth century,
the Western powers were encroaching on the territories of retreating Muslim powers such as the Ottoman Empire, Egypt and Algeria. This
phase of colonial expansion gave rise to another phase of Islamophobic prejudice defined by the concept of Orientalism (p.29). Western
scholars devised this to manufacture an image of the Eastern cultures as intrinsically depraved, misogynistic and corrupt; conveniently

necessitating the intervention of civilised European armies to drag such places out of barbarism. The pretext for the post-9/11 invasion of
Afghanistan by the West is only the most recent manifestation of this ideological smokescreen.
By the end of World War Two, the US was in position to replace the European states as both the dominant global enforcer of capital and also

Kumar highlights the pivotal meeting between

President Roosevelt and Saudi Arabias King Saud on a US warship in the
Mediterranean in 1945. At that point the deal was struck that Washington
would protect the semi-feudal Gulf states in exchange for generous oil
concessions for American companies (p.63). In addition, the US would offer
economic and military support to these states as its bulwark against Russian
influence in the Middle East. The latter was apparent by the resurgent left in the region as substantial Communist Parties emerged
in countries such as Egypt, Iraq and Iran. The US cynically used Islamist organisations to
undermine the growth of these parties and of the wider secular left in the
region. This calculated manipulation of radical Islamic groups climaxed
with US support for Bin Laden and the Mujahedeen during the Russian occupation of Afghanistan in the 1980s.
as the epicentre of myth-making about Islam.

Similarly, the Reagan administration had no reservations about covert supply of weapons to Khomeinis Iran as means of funding right-

The US attitude to Islam in this post-WW2 period was

therefore motivated by real politick; Islamists were not always seen as enemies (p.64). Muslim leaders and
wing rebels in Central America.

organisations could be useful externally as a means of curtailing Russian influence in the Middle East, or internally as a means of thwarting
the development of the secular left in Arab states. This strategy was radically altered by the 9/11 attacks. The fall of the USSR in the early
1990s had been a double-edged sword for American foreign policy. It left the US as the undisputed global superpower but also created the
need to locate a new external foe which could be presented as the justification for further expansion. Even before 9/11, neo-con
commentators had been speculating that Islam would fit the bill; Like communism during the Cold War, Islam is a threat to the West,
wrote Daniel Pipes (quoted on p.177). This drive to demonise Islam was also fuelled by the growing influence in the US State Department of
Zionist voices. Defeat in Vietnam had convinced American policy-makers that reliable client-states around the world had to be identified
that could act as proxies for US interests. Israels supporters eagerly seized the opportunity to present the Zionist state as a willing watchdog
for Washington in the Middle East. Part of this packaging of Israel as an unsinkable aircraft carrier would be a caricature of Islam as an
alien threat to Western culture. From the Six Day War in 1967 to the present, Israel has been conjoined to US policy in the region partly
under the cover of resisting Islamic fundamentalism. One of the ironies of this alliance was that the initial target of Israeli subversion was
the secular Palestinian left of the PLO. One of the best insights of this book is the little known fact that part of this subversive campaign was
actual support for the embryonic Islamist movement that would evolve into Hamas: When the Israeli state recognised and formally
licensed the Mujamma (the forerunner of Hamas) in 1978, the logic was simple - the Islamists hostility to the secular left made them useful.
Some have argued that Israel even funded these forces (p.122).Israels brutal assault on Gaza last November therefore represented a classic
example of blowback; a capitalist state cultivating an opposition movement to hurt one enemy only for that movement to develop into even
more formidable enemy. Another valuable feature of the book is the way in which it further undermines the rapidly declining myth that
Obama represents some more enlightened form of American leadership. As Kumar puts it: Liberal Islamophobia may be rhetorically
gentler than conservative Islamophobia ... but it is nonetheless racist and imperialist in that it takes for granted the white mans burden ...
self-determination does not enter their framework - and benevolent supremacy remains supreme (p.133). In contrast to the disastrous fullscale wars of the Bush Jr. era, Obamas strategy for hegemony in the Middle East deploys air strikes, drone attacks, and counterterrorism
and special operations forces as well as cyber warfare (p.135). In domestic policy as well, the Obama administration only represents a
change in style not substance regarding Americas Islamic minority. Kumar describes the appalling case of Fahad Hashmi, a Muslim US
citizen and graduate student who is currently serving a fifteen-year sentence in a Colorado prison. Hashmis crime was that he had allowed
an acquaintance to stay in his London apartment who was carrying items that would later be delivered to al Qaeda ... by the governments
logic, Hashmi should have smelt a rat... (p.149). This manufactured Islamic threat provides the US security services with a smokescreen to
attack civil liberties: Of the fourteen thousand Americans murdered in 2011, not one death was the product of Muslim terror plots, Kumar
points out (p.153). She goes on to note that fifteen times the number of Americans who were killed on 9/11 die each year because they dont
have health insurance. The book covers a broad canvas so inevitably certain aspects of this issue are explored in greater depth than others

Kumar could have stressed the relevance of an explicitly Marxist approach

to racism more, but she is particularly insightful on the close links between the State Department, neo-con historians and
Zionist pressure groups in the US. Overall, the book is a valuable weapon to counter the Islamophobic mentality that increasingly plagues
Western societies; from the so-called muscular liberalism of the French government that has banned the veil, to the homicidal delusions of

. She adopts a clear socialist perspective that the campaign

against this prejudice is in the interests of the vast majority who have had
trillions of dollars stolen from their health care, education, infrastructure
and public transportation and funnelled into the death machine (p.199).
Anders Breivik in Norway

Critical education is ineffective if not centered on the

antagonisms of capitalism the aff inherently precludes
necessary class analysis

McLaren et al., 4 Distinguished Professor, Critical Studies, Chapman University

(Peter, Gregory Martin, Ramin Farahmandpur, and Nathalia Jaramillo, Teaching in and
against the Empire: Critical Pedagogy as Revolutionary Praxis, Teaching Education
Quarterly, Winter, 139-141,

Admitting that there exists no vulgate of critical pedagogy and that there are as many
instantiations of critical pedagogy as there are theorists and practitioners, we
nevertheless hold to the claim that its most poitical characteristics have been defanged
and sterilized; crucial elements have been expurgated such that it redounds most heavily
to the advantage of the liberal capitalist state and its bourgeois cadre of educational
reformers. What precisely has been coarsened has been those elements dealing with
critical pedagogys critique of political economy, those aspects of it that challenge the
social relations of production and class society (McLaren, 2000, 2003; McLaren &
Farahmandpur, 2000, 2002). Whilst there has been a concerted attempt to redress
material inequality it needs to be acknowledged that, as admirable as this has been, such
a move has always been undertaken within the precinct of capitalism itself. That is, even
within the work of many leading exponents of critical pedagogy, there is rarely a
challenge to the capitalist state, a push, if you will, to transform it into a socialist one.
The viruliferous attacks on leftist academics as enemies of civilization by quislings and
admirers of the current Bush administration clearly have not helped to strengthen the
political resolve of critical educators in potentially taking an anti-capitalist position. We
need to think about the extent of this dilemma: If the most anti-capitalist strands of
critical pedagogy offer the strongest challenge to the existing status quo offered by U.S,
progressive educationalists, then why does critical pedagogy not constitute a more
vibrant and robust presence in schools of education, most particularly in teacher
education programs? If leading education journals are reluctant to publish articles by
those exponents of critical pedagogy who directly challenge the existence of capitalist
social relations, then what does this tell us about the hegemony of the educational
establishment as well as the state of the educational left? When teacher education
programs with decidedly social justice agendas do deal with the critical educational
tradition, even when they studiously prepare their teachers within the context of antiracist and anti-sexist frameworks, they almost invariably exclude unvarnished
critiques of the capitalist state by Marxist scholars . Whilst we remain
depressingly exercised by this dilemma we cannot within the space of this article
sufficiently explore more than a few of its ramifications. Drawing upon our own
experiences as products of teacher educational institutions as well as
practitioner/scholars within them, we wish to begin by identifying the central dilemma
that we have perceived with respect to critical pedagogy: its bowdlerization, vulgarization
and domestication. Frankly, should we find this dilemma all that surprising in
professional schools of education within the academy given that so many of them are,
after all, decidedly conservative institutions? Many (but of course not all) educators who
work in the field of teacher education are frequently given over to blaming teachers for
the so-called decline in student achievement and within such institutions control over
teachers exists in the case of teacher competency tests, certification, and exams. Too
often excluded from consideration is the notion that education can be a vehicle for social
transformation, as a way of addressing larger social contradictions and antagonisms.
There is a certain sense, then, in which current domesticated incarnations of critical

pedagogy validate education as something that must be sensitive to the needs of the poor
and exploited classes in such a way that actually precludes the possibility that those
needs can be met. Resolving the challenges facing capitalist democracy can only be made
more difficult when you are not even permitted to restate them in
terms of class struggle. We are not saying that critical educators are silkily deft at
obfuscation or deception. In most instances, critical educators are more than likely not
even aware of the contractions that undercut their objectives. We are simply arguing
that, despite the best intentions of critical educators, critical pedagogy can indeed serve
to rehabilitate the very class hierarchies that it was originally set up to challenge, if not
roundly to depose. Indeed, much of critical pedagogy has already been
subsumed into pro-capitalist common sense, co-opted through a
professional patronage to the state. In fact, it may serve unwittingly to defend the
bourgeois state by legitimating a commitment to diversity without sufficiently affirming
diversity through the necessary development of explicitly anti-racist, anti-sexist, and
antiimperialist curriculum. Deflecting questions about how class and racial formations
are linked to current social relations of production and the interpellating strategies of the
ideological state apparatus, critical pedagogy in its currently watered-down like a rum
and coke in a cheap roadside bar, and depotentiated forms actually serves to delimit the
debate over liberal capitalist democracy rather than expand it (McLaren &
Farahmandpur, 2000). This is not a call for a formulaic Marxism that is box trained and
fed on a diet of dogma and doxa and deformations of Marxs dialectical theory, but an
approach that centers educational reform within the reigning political antagonism of
age: the contradiction between labor and capital.


Cap Good

Government Intervention Solves

Severe income inequality is not inevitable government
intervention solves
Mark Thoma 14, a macroeconomist and econometrician and a Professor of Economics
at the Department of Economics of the University of Oregon (3/25, The Fiscal Times,
The Week,, lpc)
Some degree of inequality is needed to provide the incentives that make a
capitalist system work, but inequality has risen far past what is needed to
induce the effort that makes the system function. Would those at the very
top of the income distribution where inequality is increasing the most
really work less if they only received $250 million instead of $350 million
per year for their efforts? At some point, one I believe we've passed already, the
benefits of inequality in terms of incentives are surpassed by the costs. As Joseph Stiglitz
argues, "Inequality leads to lower growth and less efficiency. Lack of
opportunity means that its most valuable asset its people is not being
fully used. Many at the bottom, or even in the middle, are not living up to
their potential, because the rich, needing few public services and worried that a strong
government might redistribute income, use their political influence to cut taxes and
curtail government spending. This leads to underinvestment in infrastructure,
education, and technology, impeding the engines of growth." Capitalism is a
wonderful economic system, but it is not perfect. Government intervention
is needed to soften the impact of recessions, to overcome market failures,
and to offset the rising inequality that threatens capitalism's ability to serve
the vast majority of households to the fullest possible extent.

Money in politics is the problem not cap

Joseph Stiglitz 14, American economist and a professor at Columbia University. He is
a recipient of the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences and the John Bates Clark
Medal (6/27, Inequality Is Not Inevitable,
_php=true&_type=blogs&_r=0, lpc)
One stream of the extraordinary discussion set in motion by Thomas Pikettys timely,
important book, Capital in the Twenty-First Century, has settled on the idea
that violent extremes of wealth and income are inherent to capitalism. In this
scheme, we should view the decades after World War II a period of rapidly falling
inequality as an aberration. This is actually a superficial reading of Mr.
Pikettys work, which provides an institutional context for understanding the
deepening of inequality over time. Unfortunately, that part of his analysis
received somewhat less attention than the more fatalistic-seeming aspects.
Over the past year and a half, The Great Divide, a series in The New York Times for
which I have served as moderator, has also presented a wide range of examples that
undermine the notion that there are any truly fundamental laws of capitalism. The
dynamics of the imperial capitalism of the 19th century neednt apply in the democracies
of the 21st. We dont need to have this much inequality in America. Our current brand
of capitalism is an ersatz capitalism. For proof of this go back to our response to
the Great Recession, where we socialized losses, even as we privatized gains. Perfect
competition should drive profits to zero, at least theoretically, but we have monopolies

and oligopolies making persistently high profits. C.E.O.s enjoy incomes that are on
average 295 times that of the typical worker, a much higher ratio than in the past,
without any evidence of a proportionate increase in productivity. If it is not the
inexorable laws of economics that have led to Americas great divide, what is
it? The straightforward answer: our policies and our politics. People get tired of
hearing about Scandinavian success stories, but the fact of the matter is that
Sweden, Finland and Norway have all succeeded in having about as much or faster
growth in per capita incomes than the United States and with far greater equality. So
why has America chosen these inequality-enhancing policies? Part of the
answer is that as World War II faded into memory, so too did the solidarity it had
engendered. As America triumphed in the Cold War, there didnt seem to be a
viable competitor to our economic model. Without this international
competition, we no longer had to show that our system could deliver for
most of our citizens. Ideology and interests combined nefariously. Some drew
the wrong lesson from the collapse of the Soviet system. The pendulum swung from
much too much government there to much too little here. Corporate
interests argued for getting rid of regulations, even when those regulations had
done so much to protect and improve our environment, our safety, our health and the
economy itself. But this ideology was hypocritical. The bankers, among the
strongest advocates of laissez-faire economics, were only too willing to accept
hundreds of billions of dollars from the government in the bailouts that
have been a recurring feature of the global economy since the beginning of the
Thatcher-Reagan era of free markets and deregulation. The American political
system is overrun by money. Economic inequality translates into political
inequality, and political inequality yields increasing economic inequality. In fact, as he
recognizes, Mr. Pikettys argument rests on the ability of wealth-holders to keep their
after-tax rate of return high relative to economic growth. How do they do this? By
designing the rules of the game to ensure this outcome; that is, through politics.

Key to Tech
Capitalism key to innovation and tech
Chris Berg 13, research fellow with the Institute of Public Affairs in Melbourne,
Australia. He is the author of In Defence of Freedom of Speech: From Ancient Greece to
Andrew Bolt and the coeditor of 100 Great Books of Liberty (July/August, Why
Capitalism Is Awesome, Cato Institute,, lpc)
Each year the glossy business magazine FastCompany releases a list of what it considers
to be the Worlds 50 Most Innovative Companies. This list is populated much as you
would expect. In 2012 the leader was Apple, followed by Facebook, Google, and Spot a theme? In the top 10, there are only two companies that are not
primarily digital companies. One, Life Technologies, works in genetic engineering. (The
other try not to laugh is the Occupy Movement. FastCompany describes them as
Transparent. Tech savvy. Design savvy. Local and global. Nimble.) Not only are most of
them digital firms, but theyre all flashy and unique, and theyre almost all household
names. Everybody from Forbes to BusinessWeek hands out most innovative company
awards. Theyre all pretty similar and predictable. But these lists have a perverse effect.
They suggest that the great success of capitalism and the market economy is
inventing cutting edge technology and that if we want to observe capitalist
progress, we should be looking for sleek design and popular fashion. Innovation,
the media tells us, is inventing cures for cancer, solar panels, and social
networking. But the true genius of the market economy isnt that it produces
prominent, highly publicized goods to inspire retail queues, or the medical
breakthroughs that make the nightly news. No, the genius of capitalism is found in
the tiny things the things that nobody notices. A market economy is
characterized by an infinite succession of imperceptible, iterative changes
and adjustments. Free market economists have long talked about the
unplanned and uncoordinated nature of capitalist innovation. Theyve neglected
to emphasize just how invisible it is. One exception is the great Adam Smith. In
his Wealth of Nations, the example he used to illustrate the division of labor was a
pin factory. He described carefully the complex process by which a pin is made.
Producing the head of the pin requires two to three distinct operations. To
place the head on the wire is a peculiar business. Then the pins have to be whitened.
The production of a pin, Smith concluded, is an 18-step task. Smith was making
an argument about specialization, but just as important was his choice of example. It
would be hard to think of something less impressive, less consequential than a pin.
Smith wanted his contemporaries to think about the economy not by observing
it from the lofty heights of the palace or the lecture hall, but by seeing it from the
bottom up to recognise how a market economy is the aggregate of millions
of little tasks. Its a lesson many have not yet learned. We should try to
recognise the subtleties of the apparently mundane.

Key to Environment
Market based solutions solve environmental problems and
resource depletion
Raj Navanit Patel Mr 10, George Washington University, (Crisis: Capitalism,
Economics and the Environment, Undergraduate Economic Review,, lpc)
Argument 1: Tragic commons can be mitigated by quasi or fully established
property rights
The free market solution to the tragic commons is to extend fully realizable,
enforceable and transferable property rights to members of the commons so as
to internalize the costs of resource use on the person using the resource.
Extension of property rights thus mitigates the depletion and degradation of
the natural resource without the theoretical cost of severely compromising the
ingrained and necessary psychological constitution of the homo economicus
agent that is required for markets to work efficiently (I.e. without violating the
self-interest clause of economic agents, a staple of most neo-classical models). My point
here concerns economics as a science in general. Market based solutions are, on the
whole, committed to the premise that agents do not act altruistically
independent of an overarching self-interest and thus the notion of the
extension of property rights gives the economist theoretical tools to tackle
the dilemma of the tragic commons without violating what seems to be a
fundamental tenet of the science.

Green capitalist proposals incentivize sustainable development

Kyla Tienhaara 13, Research Fellow, Regulatory Institutions Network, ANU College of
Asia and the Pacific (09/02, Varieties of green capitalism: economy and environment in
the wake of the global financial crisis, Environmental Politics,, lpc)
Green capitalist proposals At the outset, it must be acknowledged that there are,
in fact, hundreds if not thousands of varieties of green capitalism currently being
floated by individuals and organisations, which overlap to varying degrees. I
do not aim to provide a complete survey of these proposals, but instead focus only on a
small sample of some of the most prominent documents produced in English by think
tanks and non-governmental/international organisations from 2008 to 2012. Green New
Deal The first comprehensive report (in English) to address the global financial crisis
from a green perspective was released by the Green New Deal Group (GNDG) a
collaboration between economists, journalists, and environmental advocates and driven
by the London-based think tank the New Economics Foundation in July 2008.2
Although the influence of the recommendations made by the GNDG is
debatable, there is no doubt that the report helped to popularise the term.
Furthermore, while the report was targeted to a British audience, many of its policy
prescriptions could be applied across the developed world. The GNDG
identified and highlighted the link between the root causes of the financial and
environmental crises, pointing out that the unsustainable levels of debt that
contributed to the global financial crisis also fuel unsustainable consumption of energy
and other resources: The triple crunch of financial meltdown, climate change

and peak oil has its origins firmly rooted in the current model of
globalisation. Financial deregulation has facilitated the creation of almost limitless
credit. With this credit boom have come irresponsible and often fraudulent
patterns of lending, creating inflated bubbles in assets such as property, and
powering environmentally unsustainable consumption. (GNDG 2008, p. 2) As
a consequence, the GNDG report contained proposals for the structural
transformation of the regulation of national and international financial
systems, and major changes to taxation systems, as well as specific suggestions on how
to tackle climate change (GNDG 2008). In terms of reforming the finance sector in the
short term, the GNDG argued that the British government should: tighten controls on
lending and on the generation of credit; force the demerger of large banking and finance
groups (with retail sections split from corporate finance and from securities dealing);
and subject all derivative products and other exotic financial instruments to official
inspection (p. 24). The ultimate aim of such policies is an orderly downsizing
of the financial sector (p. 25). In the longer term, the GNDG also proposed the
reintroduction of capital controls, efforts to shut down tax havens, and a global jubilee of
debt cancellation (across developed and developing countries) (pp. 2427). The more
targeted green elements of the GNDG plan included a program of public- and privatesector investment in energy conservation (with a focus on the buildings sector) and
renewable energy, backed up by price signals created through carbon taxes and a high
price for traded carbon (p. 36). It was argued that these latter measures would also help
the British government fund the Green New Deal. Another source of funding mooted was
a windfall tax on oil and gas companies (p. 37).

Transition Wars
Switching systems risks catastrophe
David Barnhizer 6, Professor at Cleveland State Universitys Cleveland-Marshall
College of Law (Waking from Sustainability's "Impossible Dream": The Decisionmaking
Realities of Business and Government, Georgetown International Environmental Law
We cannot take the chance involved in slowing down our economic system
through the imposition of new rules requiring the internalization of heretofore
external costs, or through the "friction" that would be applied if we sought to govern
economic activity through totally coherent "sustainability" institutions. It will be all we
can do if we can even come close to sustaining our ability to fulfill existing social
obligations and incrementally contribute to the reduction of poverty and creation of
opportunity in the world. Whatever else might be said about the consequences
of the Western economic model, there is a clear moral basis to the system it
supports and that we now must determine how to sustain.66 Although
proponents of economic stasis argue in faivor of either slow growth that takes all the
effects of our activities into account or even for full stasis, these are not realistic
options.67 We are not beginning from a zero point, but one where
expectations, dependency, cultures, and systems are already in place.
Consider the enormous public and private deferred debt bills and unfunded obligations
undertaken in the United States and Europe in the form of a series of budgetary
"IOUs."68 In the United States we have incurred massive debt obligations that allow us
to make comparatively small payments now but that will require enormous balloon
payments later. We would have difficulty meeting those obligations even in a healthy
economy due to the demographic shifts we are experiencing as our population ages. But
there is no reason to believe that we will be able to "sustain" the health of our economic
and social systems. As they come due, the balloon payments will necessitate some
combination of higher taxes, abandonment of the promises themselves, or reductions in
what can actually be delivered. The Western system of social support may have to change
and support lessened social and economic expectations, but there is a great difference
between lessening and complete collapse. While a modification of the core social
morality of the Western system may become necessary, it is not morally
acceptable if preventable. We need to understand the impact of the false
arguments of free trade which are in many ways veiled justifications for
destroying the moral strength of Western culture by penalizing Western
productive activities for carrying the social costs governments mandated
they sustain, while rewarding competitors for avoiding such obligations and
encouraging our productive economic activities to relocate to regions of the
world that do not require them to carry the burden of expensive social

Root Cause

Capitalism is not the root cause
John Larrivee 10, Economist at Mount St. Marys University, Masters from the Harvard Kennedy
school, PhD in economics from Wisconsin, 10 [John, A Framework For The Moral Analysis Of Markets,

Logical errors abound in critical

commentary on capitalism. Some critics observe a problem and conclude: I see X in our
society. We have a capitalist economy. Therefore capitalism causes X. They draw their
The Second Focal Point: Moral, Social, and Cultural Issues of Capitalism

conclusion by looking at a phenomenon as it appears only in one system. Others merely follow a host of popular theories
according to which capitalism is particularly bad. 6 The

solution to such flawed reasoning is to be

comprehensive, to look at the good and bad, in market and non-market systems. Thus the following
section considers a number of issuesgreed, selfishness and human relationships, honesty and truth, alienation and work

been problematic in other systems and usually in more extreme form . I conclude with some
satisfaction, moral decay, and religious participationthat have often been associated with capitalism, but have

evidence for the view that markets foster (at least some) virtues rather than undermining them. My purpose is not to
smear communism or to make the simplistic argument that capitalism isnt so bad because other systems have problems
too. The

critical point is that certain people thought various social ills resulted from
capitalism, and on this basis they took action to establish alternative economic systems
to solve the problems they had identified. That they failed to solve the problems , and in
fact exacerbated them while also creating new problems, implies that capitalism itself
wasnt the cause of the problems in the first place, at least not to the degree theorized.

A monolithic understanding of capitalism is unproductive

Bryant 13 (Levi Bryant, teaches philosophy at Collin College, January 10 2013 OntoCartography, Marx, and Abstraction,
Good question, so heres the response. Thats certainly an abstract way of responding! The idea is to suspend our
assumptions about why and wherefore things are organized as they are, pausing instead to trace networks, relations
between things, to discern how theyre linked up, how theyre organized, and so on. Rather

than *beginning*
with the premise that x organizes y, we should instead look at how things are actually
linked and interact. Latours _Reassembling the Social_ is indispensable reading on this. His thesis is that these
big terms do more to *obscure* than explain. I disagree with Latour on a number of his conclusions (I
think he too hastily rejects Marx not Marxism, for example but think hes making an important point. As Laruelle might
argue, the

problem with these big master-signifiers (society, patriarchy, capitalism, racism,

that they seem to be saying something without really saying anything. Here its
worthwhile to think of Hegels analysis of formal ground in the Science of Logic. When we think in terms of
formal ground we appear to be giving the ground of something, when weve really
replaced the thing to be explained with a *synonym *. You ask why does the earth move about the
environment) is

sun? The maitre responds because of gravity! (formal ground). You ask what is gravity? The maitre responds things
falling and orbiting about other entities! Youve replaced what is to be explained with a different set of words, that are
nonetheless saying *exactly* the same thing (A = A). So

we ask why is society organized as it is? The

maitre answers because of capitalism! You ask what is capitalism? The maitre
responds, the way society is organized! Its the same loop. You appear to be explaining
something and, of course, everyone gets upset because, well, capitalism is bad. But you
havent really explained anything at all. Youve named the place where a ground should be, but have not yet
provided that ground. So why is this problematic? First and foremost, its problematic because it transforms
capitalism into what Derrida called a spectre. Capitalism is somehow the cause of everything,
but it is also this elusive phlogiston that is everywhere and nowhere . Capitalism causes
everything, without itself being a material or real agency. The whole problem with ghosts and
spectres is that you cant fight them. We thus end up in a position of theoretical and
practical pessimism. We adopt the moral high-ground because we know that theres this

terrible thing called capitalism that we recognize and that is unjust, but because it is a
purely formal ground we have no idea how to intervene in it. The whole point of tracing the
networks or onto-cartography is to examine how things are actually put together .
Capitalism does not explain, but is what to be explained . Capitalism is the out-come
explained by onto-cartographical explanation (as are many other things), but not the
explanatory principle. In Hegelian terms, we are seeking real, not formal ground. And we only find real
ground by tracing the networks, tracing the assemblages, investigating how machines actually
interact in this historical setting and context. We investigate the work that is involved in producing
this social structure and all the entities or machines involved in that rather than assuming it at the outset.
Society explains nothing, but is what were supposed to explain. Of course, much of this goes unexplored in the
humanities and social sciences because the concept of entropy is completely absent from their thought and there is almost
no concept of work or energy at work in these theoretical frameworks. There

are either concepts or brute

material things, but no work to maintain them. No, the only agency is ideas. This is why Marx
had to turn Hegel on his head he understood fatigue but us academics all forgot that. We forgot that everything is
perpetually disintegrating, subject to entropy, precisely because things require energy and work. Who among us has
written about fatigue save some spare pages in Deleuzes Difference and Repetition that no one ever notices? Everything
quickly became the crystalline idea once again. We worked, the Marxists first and foremost, to turn Marx on his head
and forget all the things he said about production, energy, work, and so on. We forgot the working day. The second point
is that this multiplies our points of intervention at the level of practice. This is not a surprise, of course, because those of us
in the humanities would like to think that everything is an idea, a text, a meaning. Then we would be important and
masters of all! We could say everything is Shakespeare! Its curious how we so seldom explore our own conditions of
production, our own sociological conditions for our enunciations, our own secondary correlations. We dream of a world,
instead, where our interpretive and conceptual skills are the most important things of all. However ,

knowing how
things or machines are linked in such a way as to produce a particular negentropic social
organization, knowing what actants are involved, we are now in a position to intervene in
those interconnections and feedback loops. Where, hauntological thought leads us to behave like apes who
believe an intervention consists in saying capitalism sucks! (which really accomplishes nothing beyond the delights of a
beautiful soul that can feel superior to the way in which everyone else is a dupe), we now know how things are actually
linked, why they hold together as they do, why people accept them (Reich/Spinozas question) while knowing theyre
bullshit, and we can engage in interventions that blow these things up. We might be surprised as to what leads people to
tolerate this bullshit and what organizes things. We might find that the clock yes, I literally mean clocks plays a crucial
role or that the length of the working day plays a crucial role or something else besides. But we would know nothing about
this because we already know what were going to find at the end of analysis. We already know the answer. As a result we
see without seeing. Yet if

we bothered to actually trace networks and get out of our mastersignifiers, we would discover that there are sites of resistance that we never before
imagined because we bothered to trace the network. Sometimes a student in the first grade doesnt
learn not because hes stupid but because he didnt have glasses, for example. Sometimes its a clock that organizes
peoples lives, not a belief. Sometimes it makes more sense to intervene in clocks or glasses, but you can only know that if
you actually trace the networks or the concrete. Occupy Wall Street got the idea with rolling jubilee. They realized that
maybe debt plays a bigger role in perpetuating capitalism than mistaken ideology or failing to have the right moral values.
They then decided to start buying up that debt and then forgiving it. How many of you 101st keyboard revolutionary
commandos have participated in that? Ill end with a low blow, because Im despicable like that. The third point is that

these big master-signifier explanations just dont display very good fidelity to Marx In
other words, I think youre a bunch of poseurs. Marx spent his time in the library, reading
newspapers, exploring tables of numbers, looking at gross products, looking at living working conditions, etc. Marx was a
good onto-cartographer. Oh yeah, I went there! He

used a methodology that created the conditions for

the possibility for him to be surprised. He didnt have a master-theory but was in search
of an explanation. What sad heirs he had. They instead had a dogma that already knew the answer and that, as a
result, could no longer be surprised by the world. He didnt already have the explanation, but understood that this is what
is to be explained. He did not behave like the bad psychoanalyst that says at the outset Your problem is Oedipus! (or
those that at least think this). No, with

each new datum he was willing to overturn everything.

Marxism has not followed in this path, it has not looked at the actual world , it hasnt turned
Hegel on his head, but has instead tried to tun Marx upside down. Real Marxism is onto-cartography.


The notion of prison industrial complex is incomplete cap and
race are intertwined
Loc Wacquant 7, sociologist at the Earl Warren Legal Institute, University of
California, Berkeley (The Place of the Prison in the New Government of Poverty,, lpc)
The refrain of the rise of a prison-industrial complex that would have
succeeded (or supplemented) the military-industrial complex of the Cold War
era, with defense industry giants retooling from supplying arms to the
Pentagon to providing surveillance and punishment for the poor, the fear of the red
enemy of the exterior being replaced by dread for the black enemy of the interior, and
private operators acting in cahoots with corrections officials and politicians to constitute
a shadowy subgovernment pushing for limitless carceral expansion aimed at
exploiting the booming captive workforce, is a leitmotiv of the oppositional
discourse on prison in the United States. 13 Anchored in a conspiratorial vision of
history, this thesis suffers from four major lacunae that undercut its analytical import
and ruin its practical pertinence. First, it reduces the twofold, conjoint and
interactive, transformation of the social and penal components of the
bureaucratic field to the sole industrialization of incarceration. But the
changing scale of confinement in America is only one element of a broader redefinition
of the perimeter and modalities of state action with regard to the problem populations
residing in the nether regions of social and urban space. It is tightly connected to,
and cannot be explained in isolation from the the epochal transition from
welfare to workfare.14 By contrast, it is very dubious whether it can be tied
to the globalization of the overly large and vague isms of capitalism and
racismthe two favorite culprits in this activist tale of government evilneither of
which provide the necessary and sufficient conditions for Americas
unprecedented and unrivaled carceral experiment. Second, the imagery of the
prison-industrial complex accords the role of driving force to the pecuniary interest of
firms selling correctional services and wares or allegedly tapping the vast reserves of
labor held under lock. It maintains that the profit motive is crucial to the onset of mass
incarceration when, in reality, the latter pertains first and foremost to a political logic
and project, namely, the construction of a post-Keynesian, liberal-paternalistic state
suited to institute desocialized wage labor and propagate the renewed ethic of work and
individual responsibility that buttress it. Profiteering from corrections is not a
primary cause but an incidental and secondary consequence of the
hypertrophic development of the penal apparatus. Indeed, the fact that private
concerns are reaping benefits from the expansion of a government function is neither
new nor specific to imprisonment: the delivery of every major public good in the United
States, from education and housing to safety and health care, grants a vast role to
commercial or third-sector partiesrelative to medical provision for instance,
punishment remains distinctively public. Nor is privatization necessary: banning
imprisonment for profit did not prevent California from becoming a leader
in the drive to mass incarceration.

Perm - prisons are apparatuses of control for the lower class

Loc Wacquant 7, sociologist at the Earl Warren Legal Institute, University of
California, Berkeley (The Place of the Prison in the New Government of Poverty,, lpc)
Prison and the deskilled labor market. In the first place, the penal system
contributes directly to regulating the lower segments of the labor market
and it does so in a manner more coercive and consequential than labor
legislation, social insurance schemes, and other administrative rules, many
of which do not cover insecure work. Its effect on this front is threefold. First, the
stupendous prevalence and escalation of penal sanctions helps to discipline the
reticent fractions of the working class by raising the cost of strategies of
resistance to desocialized wage labor via exit into the informal economy. Faced with
aggressive policing, severe courts, and the likelihood of brutally long prison
sentences for drug offenses and recidivism, many shrink from getting or staying
involved in the illegal commerce of the street and submit instead to the dictate of
insecure employment. For some of those coming out of the pen, the tight
mesh of postcorrectional supervision increases pressure to opt for the
straight life anchored in work, when available. 2 On both counts, the criminal
justice system acts in concordance with workfare to push its clientele onto
the peripheral segments of the job market. Second, the carceral apparatus
helps to fluidify the low-wage sector and artificially depresses the
unemployment rate by forcibly subtracting millions of unskilled men from the
labor force. It is estimated that penal confinement shaved two full percentage
points off of the U.S. jobless rate during the 1990s. Indeed, according to Bruce
Western and Katherine Beckett, when the differential between the incarceration level of
the two areas is taken into account, the United States posted an unemployment rate
higher than the average for the European Union during eighteen of the twenty years
between 1974 and 1994, contrary to the view propagated by the adulators of
neoliberalism and critics of Eurosclerosis. 3 While it is true that not all inmates
would be in the labor force if free, that two-percentage point gap does not
include the Keynesian stimulus provided by booming public expenditures and
employment in corrections: the number of jail and prison jobs at the local, state, and
federal level more than doubled over the past two decades, jumping from under 300,000
in 1982 to over 716,000 in 1999, when monthly payroll exceeded $2,1 billion. 4 Penal
growth has also boosted employment in the private sector of carceral goods
and services, a sector with a high rate of precarious jobs and turnover, and which goes
rising along with the privatization of punishment (since the source of the
competitiveness of correctional firms is the exceedingly low wages and meager benefits
they give their staff.

Nationalism informs economic discrimination
Maria Torres 99, director and professor of Latin American and Latino Studies at the
University of Illinois in Chicago (In the land of mirrors: Cuban exile politics in the United
States, University of Michigan Press, pp. 29-31)

The cold war further institutionalized the states role in the movement of
people in the twentieth century. This resulted in part from a hypersensitivity to
national security concerns that made migrs from socialist countries potential
spies, and vice versa. Yet migrs also had symbolic value in the competition
between these two antagonistic political and economic systems. For instance, the
U.S. Congress authorized and funded the executive branch to set up special programs to
relocate refugees from East European countries to the United States. Within socialist
countries the control of population movement was essential for maintaining internal
order. Therefore, policies regulating the movement of people had not only
economic but also political functions.13 Even those immigrant flows
perceived to be primarily economic may acquire political significance. Today,
for instance, the debate in the United States about immigration from Mexico has
acquired a political significance in the electoral arena. The Cuban revolution
of 1959 restructured class and power relations on the island. Policies were
instituted that greatly redistributed wealth and other societal benefits. The
revolution was deeply rooted in the struggle to define a nation and institute
a just social program; it also had ramifications for U.S. hegemony in the
Caribbean. The Cuban revolution had a major impact on the postWorld War
II standoff between the Soviet Union and the United States. The dynamics set in
motion by an internal revolution were played out in the world arena. For the
United States the nationalist revolution was perceived as a threat to its
national security, as an island that had clearly been in the U.S. sphere was now quickly
moving into the communist orbit. Soon, the Soviet Union had established a
beachhead ninety miles from the U.S. coast. In Cuba the defense of the
revolution against outside threats became a rallying point. National security
was the cornerstone of the philosophy of the emerging government. In much the
same way as with U.S. policy, internal policies in Cuba fueled the formation of
the Cuban exile. Cuban officials have generally dealt harshly with internal
opposition; their policies at times encouraged dissidents to emigrate, while
at other times they punished those who wanted to leave. Once abroad, with rare
exception, exiles were cast as enemies of the revolution. The fact that people fleeing
communism acquired a positive symbolic value for the United States furthered the
process of demonizing those who were leaving Cuba. This naturally affected the
movement of people off the island and, consequently, the politics of migr
communities. In this context the relationship to host and home countries
acquired a political significance for Cubans not normally ascribed to other
immigrant communities. On the one hand, it emerged from a revolution that
challenged U.S. hegemony. Thus, harboring refugees from revolutionary Cuba was of
strategic value in the war against communism. Yet across the Florida Straits, leaving the
island was equated with abandoning the Cuban nation, with treason. The relationship of
the migr community to the host state and home state, then, is defined at least in part
by the national security interests of both states. Therefore, these must be taken

into consideration in analyzing the unfolding of exile politics as well as

understanding the development of the community. Some scholars have
periodized Cuban immigration into various waves, taking into consideration Cuban and
U.S. policies that determined the way people could leave and enter.14

Racism predates capitalism - capital imperialism emerged out of
it. Dismantling islamophobia is key to breaking down capitalism
Isaac Steiner 12, staff writer at Solidarity (12/23, Islamophobia and the Empire,

Vilification of Islam and of Muslims is not a wholly new phenomenon. The mythology of Islam and
Muslim countries as exotic others with stark cultural contrasts to the West actually pre-

dates the foundation of the United Statesmost dramatically acted upon with the
Crusades and the Spanish Inquisition. While there is little real connection between this history and
recent events, comments like George Bushs September 2001 remark that this crusade, this

war on
terrorism, is going to take awhile cemented it as a powerful metaphor for popular understanding of the
wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. More recently, the growth of U.S. empire has always required a populist
justification for nearly non-stop wars. Territorial expansion into the lands of Native Americans created a

script of the civilizing mission of Christian values and capitalism versus savage,
backwards enemies. In the twentieth century, petroleum's rising importance for energy and
manufacturing led to the oil-rich countries stretching from North Africa to Central Asia became a centrally
important region of political and economic concern. But until relatively recently, Communism filled the role
of imperialism's main bogeyman. In fact, when Soviet-allied, nationalist populism dominated politics in
many Muslim countries, the CIA funded fundamentalist Islamic organizationsand red scares were the
primary means of tainting any domestic opposition to imperialism. As recently as the Reagan years, Islamist
fundamentalists in Afghanistan (the precursors to the Taliban) were praised as allies in the war against
communism. At the same time, the crises of late capitalismsocial, economic, and ideologicalled to a
worldwide resurgence of fundamentalism. In the United States, this took the form of twin fundamentalisms:
evangelical Christianity's spread and ideological neoliberalism, or market fundamentalism. Meanwhile,
different varieties of fundamentalist Islam became more prominent following the derailment of the Iranian
revolution and the establishment of an Islamic Republic in that country. (Gilbert Achcar explored this idea in
his book, The Clash of Barbarisms.) By the end of the Cold War and disappearance of communism as a
credible threat, conservative theorists like Samuel Huntington began speaking of a "clash of civilizations"
which provided the perfect foil to frame the terrorist attacks of September 11, ripped from their historical
context of U.S. intervention in the Muslim world. Ironically, after it had been unleashed, we see that this
bigotry can have its own momentum. Now, Barack Obamathe commander-in-chief who has continued the
wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistanis himself a target of the Islamophobic atmosphere that the wars
set in motion! Muslims in the United States To understand the current Islamophobic climate, we should
recognize that Islam is not just over there. The presence of Muslims in the United States goes back
hundreds of years. As Jen Phillips observes in Mother Jones magazine: Before the World Trade
Center was even designed (with Islamic architectural elements, incidentally), the ground was indeed
sacrosanct: The

bones of some 20,000 African slaves are buried 25 feet below Lower
Manhattan. As at least 10 percent of West African slaves in America were Muslims, it's not out
of bounds to extrapolate that ground zero itself was built on the bones of at least a few Muslim slaves...
Connected to this history, there have long existed currents of Black Nationalism and African-American
conversions to Islam which recognize this Muslim heritage, most visibly the Nation of Islam.

The perm solves queer Marxism can explain the function of
Alan Sears 5, Ph.D from Warwick in Sociology, professor of sexuality and theory at
Ryerson (Jan, Queer Anti-Capitalism: Whats Left of Gay and Lesbian Liberation?
Science & Society, Vol. 69, No. 1, Marxist-Feminist Thought Today, Guliford Press,, lpc)
Perhaps the greatest single contribution of marxist-feminist theory has been
the development of a rich conception of social reproduction that ties
together paid and unpaid labor, state and civil society, home and workplace
in a single process defined by fundamental relations of inequality (class, gender,
race/ethnicity and sexuality) (see Ferguson, 1999). This totalistic analysis of social
reproduction is a crucial tool for the development of an emancipatory sexual
politics, helping us to understand the ways that regimes of sexual regulation
mobilize or suppress forms of sexuality at particular historical moments in the
context of changing relations of production and reproduction. A queer marxist
feminism builds on this conception of social reproduction by relating it to the
"indigenous" politics of sexual emancipation developed in the lesbian and gay
liberation movement. I believe a queer marxist feminism can contribute to a
revival of some of the most emancipatory aspects of lesbian and gay
liberation by explaining how the limits and contradictions in the gains we have
made since 1969 are tied to the specific dynamics of racialized, gendered and
sexualized capitalist reproduction. This is not a departure from marxist feminism,
but an expansion of it in light of the politics of queer liberation.

Race and capitalism cant be separated racism is used as a tool
to justify economic oppression
Axiom Amnesia 11 (11/5, Understanding the Historical Context of Racism and
Capitalism,, lpc)
The white racial frame is the dominant worldview of whites today. It was
adopted by white elites during the beginning of European global conquest, such as when
Europeans encountered Indians in what was to become the Americas and when white
elites enslaved Africans in the United States. The white racial frame continues to
be used to rationalize and justify racial oppression today. The white racial
frame rationalizes racial oppression through racist stereotypes, such as African
Americans and other people of color being inherently lazier, unintelligent, uncivilized,
criminal, evil, and generally inferior. At the same time, white Americans are
viewed as intelligent, holy, virtuous, good, hardworking and generally
superior (Feagin 2010). Racism/White Supremacy/Racial Oppression has
always been central and fundamental to the global system of capitalism. The
white racial frame started with, and thus justified, the genocide of Native
Americans in order to steal the land of North America and enslavement of
Africans, all in the interest of generating wealth for white capitalist elites. The genocide
of Indians and enslavement of African Americans is foundational to the present
system of capitalism we have today. Theft of land inhabited by people of color and
exploitation of their labor was, and continues to be, fundamental to the global system of
capitalism. White supremacist capitalism has thrived by sucking the blood
of people of color in the United States and throughout the world all in the
interest of generating wealth for white capitalist elites. The exploitation of labor
and land of people of color in the United States and throughout the world is central to
the interest of generating wealth for white capitalist elites, and is the reason people of
color are disproportionately poor. People of color are not disproportionately
poor because they are inferior, like bourgeois ideology and the white racial
frame says. On the contrary, they are disproportionately poor because they are the
primary victims in the system of global capitalism. The primary predators or victimizers
in the global system of capitalism throughout its history and today are white elites.

Analysis of racial structures is a pre-requisite to an anti-cap

Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor 11, editor of the International Socialist Review and a
doctoral student in African American Studies at Northwestern University (Race, class
and Marxism,,
Marxists believe that the potential for that kind of unity is dependent on battles
and struggles against racism today. Without a commitment by revolutionary
organizations in the here and now to the fight against racism, working-class unity
will never be achieved and the revolutionary potential of the working class will never
be realized. Yet despite all the evidence of this commitment to fighting racism over many
decades, Marxism has been maligned as, at best, "blind" to combating racism
and, at worst, "incapable" of it. For example, in an article published last summer,

popular commentator and self-described "anti-racist" Tim Wise summarized the critique
of "left activists" that he later defines as Marxists. He writes: [L]eft activists often
marginalize people of color by operating from a framework of extreme class
reductionism, which holds that the "real" issue is class, not race, that "the only color that
matters is green," and that issues like racism are mere "identity politics," which should
take a backseat to promoting class-based universalism and programs to help working
people. This reductionism, by ignoring the way that even middle class and
affluent people of color face racism and color-based discrimination (and by
presuming that low-income folks of color and low-income whites are equally oppressed,
despite a wealth of evidence to the contrary) reinforces white denial, privileges white
perspectivism and dismisses the lived reality of people of color. Even more, as we'll see,
it ignores perhaps the most important political lesson regarding the interplay
of race and class: namely, that the biggest reason why there is so little working-class
consciousness and unity in the Untied States (and thus, why class-based programs to
uplift all in need are so much weaker here than in the rest of the industrialized world), is
precisely because of racism and the way that white racism has been deliberately
inculcated among white working folks. Only by confronting that directly (rather than
sidestepping it as class reductionists seek to do) can we ever hope to build crossracial, class based coalitions. In other words, for the policies favored by the class
reductionist to work--be they social democrats or Marxists--or even to come into being,
racism and white supremacy must be challenged directly.


Boring Politics
Concrete demands on the state are overrated shifts in
discourse and in modes of political involvement best produce
resistance and effect change
Millner-Larsen, 13 Lecturer, Department of Visual Cultures, Goldsmiths, University
of London (Nadja, Demandless Times, Vol. 41, Nos. 3 and 4, 113-115)
Way back in September 2011, when a burgeoning movement at Zuccotti Park was still
suffering from a dearth of mainstream reportage, Academy Awardwinning actress
Susan Sarandon paid a visit to the fledgling occupation. Sarandon offered her support,
but was notably befuddled by the scene on the ground. Most irksome to Sarandon was
the lack of a clear message: Your weakness is that there are so many issues, she said.
Is everyone here registered to vote? Are you having people sign petitions? (Gray 2011).
Sarandons queries were soon echoed across many media outlets as observers on both
the left and the right struggled to make sense of Occupy Wall Streets (OWSs) resistance
to naming demands (see Kristof 2011). In the weeks following Sarandons dubious
offerings to the Zuccotti encampment, a palpable about-face occurred across news
outlets, precisely over the efficacy of OWSs refusal to issue demands. Initially dismissed
as mere navet, the logic of demandlessness and even the anarchist ethos it reflected
were increasingly hailed as successful strategy (see Pepitone 2011;
Schneider 2011). This was largely a result of the enormous success of the slogan We are
the 99 percent and of the ensuing swells of occupations across the country and the
globe. This discursive shift was also an effect of the curious potential
embedded in the refusal to represent a collective body as always
already locatable or identifiable. The radical openness of the 99 percent
belied the processes of division, classification, and interpellation to which our bodies are
typically subjected via the laws of appearance in a neoliberal state. Yet with the passage
of two winters since the New York Police Departments violent ousting of the Zuccotti
encampment in the early hours of November 15, 2011, OWSs death knell has been
repeatedly sounded. Despite enormous evidence of a coordinated government effort to
undo OWS, demandlessness has often taken the blame for the perceived failures of this
movement (see Madrick 2013; Frank 2012). Even as the movement flourishes in
numerous community-organizing campaigns and a highly effective relief effort in the
immediate wake of Hurricane Sandy, demandlessness (and its attendant modes of
horizontal decision making) has endured the brunt of OWS-weary finger-wagging from
Left and Right alike.1 But following Lauren Berlant, reflecting on OWSs demandlessness
allows us to engage the question How might political breakdown work as something
other than a blot, or a botched job? (1994, 127). In the short life span of this movement
thus far, demandlessness has embodied an ever-shifting status: from object of vilification
and anxiety, to celebration, and back again. This essay attends to the ways in which
demandlessness has interfaced with a wide range of political desires over the course of
OWSs short history. Affective responses to OWS have run the gamut between extreme
hostility and exuberant congeniality. On the one hand, OWSs demandlessness is held
responsible for relegating the movement to the realm of the merely symbolic (Michaels
2012). The joining of symbolic to the adjective merely is itself a curious indictment,
suggesting that the symbolic is clearly and definitively cut off from the real. On the other
hand, many register this symbolic shift as one of great significance. For
example, Rosalyn Deutsche has lauded OWS for injecting the scandal of extreme

economic inequality into what is commonly referred to as public political discourse

(2012, 42). How might we make sense of such a range between Deutsches congenial
gratitude and the sneering hostility of others? While the lasting effects of the OWS
movement remain to be seen, the tactical adherence to demandlessness raises the issue
of how to sustain a movement that disidentifies with sanctioned modes of political
engagement. Moving beyond normative forms of political involvement
including demands for inclusion, equality, and visibilitydemandlessnesss refusal of
typical representational protocols demands new modes of relationality that
challenge liberal conceptions of representation. The notion of such a
movement emerges from, and extendsat times unwittinglythe critiques that racial
justice movements, feminist, and queer of color activism have leveled against the
viability of rights discourses.2 In this essay, I demonstrate how OWSs mobilizations of
abstract ideas like Equality and Justice (in place of particular demands) might be
productively augmented by the insights of trans, queer, and critical race politics, which
have waged refusals of representational protocols alongside robust critiques of power. I
begin with a discussion of the historical and theoretical genealogies of demandlessness,
its aspirations and pragmatics.

Concrete political demands fragment resistance multiple

empirical examples prove that abstractness and focus on
discourse are key to resisting institutional power
Millner-Larsen, 13 Lecturer, Department of Visual Cultures, Goldsmiths, University
of London (Nadja, Demandless Times, Vol. 41, Nos. 3 and 4, 116-117)
While U.S.-based university occupations presented a clear articulation of
demandlessness in tandem with the practice of occupation, OWS has cited Tahrir Square
(and other rebellions that fell under the banner of the Arab Spring) as an inspiration
(see Ahmed 2012), alongside recent revolts in Britain (see Hancox 2011), Puerto Rico
(Ocup(arte) 2010), Spain (see Castaeda 2012) and Greece (see Graeber 2013; Ribellarsi
and Weill 2011). While the movements of the squares across the Mediterranean rim
(Smith 2012) did not all have the same relationship to demandlessness, the global
resonance of public occupations coincided at a remarkable rate (see Hardt and Negri
2012). Spains movement mobilized the abstract signifier indignado (indignant) as their
slogan, instead of specific demands. The alchemical indignado is reminiscent of a slogan
originating in May 68: We are all German Jews. Kristin Ross argues that the we of
the slogan assembles a collective subject through the identification with a group
German Jewsthat, through its proclamation as a shared name, becomes no longer
sociologically classifiable (2002, 57). In both 1968 and 2011, thousands of people
embraced names without matching sociological categories. Such discursive events
shift bodies from where they are supposed to be located (by, for
example, the law) in order to produce collective subjects that cannot be counted, rather
than affirming preexisting identities. This desire to indict the social and
cultural divisions required by the representational rubric of liberal democracy is at the
root of the need to transcend the logic of the demand. The tactical efficacy of resistance
to representational logic entailed in the combination of demandlessness and occupation
has perhaps been displayed most visibly by Zapatismoitself highly influential for the
antiglobalization movements that began in 1999 (see Hardt and Negri 2012). Zapatismo
spokespersons have largely resisted speaking for other residents of the Chiapas
territories that they have collectively occupied since the mid-1990s. Instead, they adopt

the abstract signifier of the black mask as a marker of the nameless, the voiceless, the
uncounted. Thomas Nail (2013) has suggested that the use of masks by Zapatistas, and
OWS occupiers, actualizes a kind of third person subjectivity. Rather than
representation of a constituency through a series of demands, a network of alliance in
the space of occupation is preferred. Simon Tormey has hailed Zapatismo as
symptomatic of a more general shift in the underpinnings of the political field, one that
problematizes and points beyond representation (2006, 138). The assumption here is
that acts of representational mediation risk delimiting a subjects political experience.
Presumably, if one refuses to represent oneself as immediately recognizable, one cannot
be called out, named, and thus subjected to institutional power. The challenge to
the epistemological status of representation, in effecting a different
mode of authorizing the human subject, provides the underlying
edifice by which institutional power might be ruptured . This concept was
clearly invoked by the students of the 2008 New School occupation, whose December
communiqu Pre-Occupied: The Logic of Occupation, spelled out the need to
undermine representational logic at both individual and rhetorical levels: Identities that
clouded our communication evaporate before our eyes and we see each for the first time
as not who we are but how we exist. Adverbs replace both nouns and adjectives in the
grammar of this human strike, where language is made to speak for the very first time
without fear of atrophy. . . . Indiscernible, we sever the addiction to visibility that only
guarantees our defeat. Thought has no image, and neither shall we. The resistance to
legibility imbricated in demandlessness and its possibility of inducing new social
relations is framed as something that has no relation whatsoever to its enemy,
something whose development and trajectory is completely indifferent
to the nonlife of governance and capital (Inoperative Committee 2009,
section III). The territory of the occupation is thus imagined as a space where subjects
are formed rather than found. OWS operates under a similar set of assumptions. As Jodi
Dean and Jason Jones have noted, Occupy is said to be post or anti-representation with
respect to the individual subjects participating in the movement and with respect to the
movements own relation to its setting in communicative capitalism. And this
antirepresentationalism corresponds to the horizontalist method of organizing that has
itself been the object of much debate (see Beltran et al. 2012). According to Dean and
Jones, The consensus-based practices of Occupy are premised on a rejection of the idea
that anyone can or should speak for another person. To speak for another, it is claimed,
effects a kind of violence or exclusion, repressing individual autonomy.

Hope Key
We maintain a pragmatist hope for the future this is the only
logical political advocacy
Buck-Morss 13 (Susan Buck-Morss, Professor of Political Science @ CUNY Graduate
Center and Professor Emeritus at Cornell, A Commonist Ethics, The Idea of
Communism vol 2, ed. by Slavoj Zizek, pg. 73 - 75, wcp)
The glow of optimism felt worldwide when Barack Obama won the US presidency in 2008 was a last (and lost) chance to
believe that the system was capable of righting itself. In

Obama's loyalty to the two pillars of the world

order - capitalist economics and national self-interest - his presidency has demonstrated
the bankruptcy of both. Given that free markets in a free society have failed to deliver
basic human needs, can the world's citizens be asked to hope again? Of course the
analogy is exaggerated, and the political emergency is qualitatively different - Obama is, happily, not a fascist, and, sadly,
not socialist enough - but one

is reminded of an exchange between Albert Speer and Adolf

Hitler in March 1945, as the Soviet army closed in on Berlin. Hitler was enraged to discover Speer
had blocked his orders, but then calmed down and said 'in a relaxed tone': 'Speer, if you can convince yourself that the war
is not lost, you can continue to run your office . . . ' 'You know I cannot be convinced of that,' I replied sincerely but
without defiance. 'The

war is lost.' Hitler launched into his reflections . . . of other difficult

situations in his life, situations in which all had seemed lost but which he had
mastered . . . [H]e surprisingly lowered his demand: 'If you would believe that the war
can still be won, if you could at least have faith in that, all would be well . . .' Agitated . . . I
said: 'I cannot, with the best will in the world . . .' Once again Hitler reduced his demand to a formal
profession of faith: 'If you could at least hope that we have not lost! You must certainly
be able to hope . . . that would be enough to satisfy me.' I did not answer. There was a long, awkward
pause. At last Hitler stood up abruptly . . . 'You have twenty-four hours to think over your answer! Tomorrow let me
know whether you hope that the war can still be won.' Without shaking hands, he dismissed me.31
Again, the point of comparison is not one of leadership. It is only to point out that hope,
too, can be an ideology. I cannot help feeling that Obama himself is aware of this danger, surely having
believed in the democratic process that brought him to electoral victory such a short time ago. Obama was fond of
repeating, 'This is not about me.' And he was precisely correct. It was not. But he
himself lacked faith in the people who had elected him. Obama is proud to call himself a
pragmatist. He just forgot one thing: in attempting to be realistic within the confines of the
crazy status quo, he betrayed the pragmatics of the suddenly possible, which is,
after all, the force that elected him in the first place. It is a global force, and it desperately
wants change. It is the only sane politics the world now has . At this moment, being
pragmatic in the sense of being cautious, proceeding reasonably within the irrational
whole, is the truly risky path. Will the world's leaders recognize this? Will they wake up
to the fact that the system they rely on is bankrupt, and that their power rests on air? As
the Egyptian Feminist Nawal Sadaawi urged last spring: make your own revolution. The ways forward will be as varied as
the people of this world. Feminists globally have taught us the need for such variety.32 All of these ways forward deserve
our solidarity and support. We, the 99 per cent, must refuse to become invisible to each other. The experiments that are
going on now in thousands of locations need space, the space that Walter Benjamin called a Spiefrawn ('space of play') to
try doing things differently. And

they need time, the slowing of time, the pulling of the

emergency brake, so that something new can emerge. This is time that state power wants
to cut short, and space that old-style political parties want to foreclose. There is no
rush. The slowing of time is itself the new beginning.33 Every day that this event
continues, it performs the possibility that the world can be otherwise. Against the
hegemony of the present world order that passes itself off as natural and necessary,
global actors are tearing a hole in knowledge. New forms emerge. They nourish our
imagination, the most radical power that we as humans have.

Revolutionary politics are useless
Crimethinc 1, decentralized anarchist collective (Days of War, Nights of Love,, lpc)
The truth is, your politics are boring to them because they really are
irrelevant. They know that your antiquated styles of protestyour marches,
hand held signs, and gatheringsare now powerless to effect real change
because they have become such a predictable part of the status quo. They know
that your post-Marxist jargon is off-putting because it really is a language of mere
academic dispute, not a weapon capable of undermining systems of control. They know
that your infighting, your splinter groups and endless quarrels over
ephemeral theories can never effect any real change in the world they
experience from day to day. They know that no matter who is in office, what laws are on
the books, what "ism"s the intellectuals march under, the content of their lives will
remain the same. Theyweknow that our boredom is proof that these
"politics" are not the key to any real transformation of life. For our lives are
boring enough already! And you know it too. For how many of you is politics a
responsibility? Something you engage in because you feel you should, when
in your heart of hearts there are a million things you would rather be doing? Your
volunteer workis it your most favorite pastime, or do you do it out of a sense of
obligation? Why do you think it is so hard to motivate others to volunteer as you do?
Could it be that it is, above all, a feeling of guilt that drives you to fulfill your
"duty" to be politically active? Perhaps you spice up your "work" by trying
(consciously or not) to get in trouble with the authorities, to get arrested: not because it
will practically serve your cause, but to make things more exciting, to recapture a little of
the romance of turbulent times now long past. Have you ever felt that you were
participating in a ritual, a long-established tradition of fringe protest, that
really serves only to strengthen the position of the mainstream? Have you ever
secretly longed to escape from the stagnation and boredom of your political
"responsibilities"? It's no wonder that no one has joined you in your political endeavors.
Perhaps you tell yourself that it's tough, thankless work, but somebody's got to do it. The
answer is, well, NO.