[OPE-L:6961] Re: Re: slavery and the multiple worlds hypothesis

From: Paul (paul@cockshott.com)
Date: Wed Apr 10 2002 - 16:45:39 EDT

gerald_a_levy wrote:

> Re Paul C's [6946-7]:
> In [6946], Paul wrote:
> > One may speculate whether on a multiplicity of worlds, spread accross
> > the universe, on which intelligent life develops capitalism would usually
> > develop without first being enmeshed in slavery. But this can only be
> > speculation, we can never test it.
> Then, in [6947] Paul  constructs what he recognizes to be a hypothetical
> commodity-producing slave mode of production.
> Yet, in constructing in [6947] his "generalized commodity producing slave
> economy"  Paul has engaged in precisely the type of speculation that he
> warned Nicky about in [6946]. Or, even worse, since Paul constructs a
> hypothetical mode of production whereas capitalism -- even when it does
> not appear in specific social formations in 'pure' form -- is a product of
> history
> and a reality.

Here I would beg to differ. My generalised commodity producing slavery
was not intended as a completely hypothetical system. It bears the same
sort of relationship to the early Roman empire as Marx's reproduction
schemes do to the early  British Empire.

In both cases they are simplified and idealised models of how actual
societies operate. Such models give us the major dynamic of the society
by concentrating on the form of economy on which the dominant
section of the ruling class depends.

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