RNL read, Comrade Karl, posted this comment:
Capital is unnecessary for society. You don’t need money to build a factory or a laboratory. All you need is materials and laborers. Capital is just an inefficient way for a few to control the materials and labor of the collective. Plus you have failed to illustrate how capital is an efficient way of advancing the material well being of the people. Capital is an efficient way to make more capital. But this leads to crisis.
OK, let’s apply a little logic to this statement to see how well it holds up under the light of reason.
1 — If I have a pile of ‘materials. and a bunch of ‘laborers,’ is that really ‘all I need to build my factory?’ Why are the laborers going to build the factory? Do they even know how to build it? If not, who is going to teach them? And who will coordinate them? Or do we let every one of them decide what they will do? And if we do, what happens when everyone steps back and says they are waiting to do their part — paint the offices? How is the factory ever going to get built then? And none of this addresses how we deal with people who decide they only want to work 5 minutes every day, or at night, or only on Tuesdays…
Do you see how and why Karl’s assertion is false?
2 — Is capital just an inefficient and all about control? Well, we already demonstrated that there is no way to build our factory with just material and labor. Now, what if the factory is being built by a person who will own it? This person then borrows the money to buy the materials. He hires a foreman to oversee the building. He convinces the foreman to do this willingly by offering enough money to convince the foreman he wants to do the job. The factory owner then uses money to find the people who willing to do the jobs the foreman tells them to do the way he tells them to do it in return for the money the factory owner is willing to pay. There you go: the free market has EFFICIENTLY resolved the problems we just identified in Karl’s dream.
3 — But does Capitalism lead to crisis? Not necessarily. Karl is assuming the people will have no choice, but is this true? NO! I do not have to go work for the factory owner. And this is another of Karl’s attempts to force people to work within his world: he is putting his ball on the ‘T.’ but he keeps striking out because his conditions are not reality. Not only can a worker refuse to work for the factory owner, the worker can become his own boss. Maybe he won’t own a factory, but he might be able to cut lumber or make brick so he can then sell it to the factory owner to make his factory. And THAT is how a free market works.
Now, what Karl calls a ‘crisis’ and blames on Capitalism comes from his inability to see anything but the material. Once again, Karl tries to put his ball on the ‘T.’ Sadly for Karl, the heart of a human is NOT material, nor is it motivated by JUST material causes. If a person is lazy, then they will allow the factory owner to pay politicians to bribe them into voting for these politicians on the promise that they will ‘make the factory worker pay.’ Then, when the lazy worker catches on to what happened, blames the ‘corrupt’ factory owner and his political lackey. But who was corrupt first, and why? THE WORKER! BECAUSE HE WANTED SOMETHING FOR NOTHING!
That is not the fault of the free market: it is human nature. And human nature is not material, so Karl’s theories have no foundation in reality. He might as well be hoping his labor will use his material to build his factory in the clopuds 🙂