[OPE-L:7175] Re: Re: fundamentalism

From: Rakesh Bhandari (rakeshb@stanford.edu)
Date: Wed May 15 2002 - 15:21:09 EDT

>I think one of the problems with our communication is that the *focus*
>of our concerns has been different: for Kliman, his _primary
>research focus_ has, to date, been hermeneutic; for many others,
>their primary research focus has been capitalism.  In other words,
>Kliman has been mainly focused on what is essentially a *history of
>political economy question* (i.e. what is the interpretation of Marx's
>quantitative theory that is the most consistent and has the best textual
>evidence when placed in the context of Marx's overall theory?),
>whereas many other Marxists are focused on comprehending and
>struggling against the dynamics of  capitalism.

This is simply slander against Kliman whose contributions to News and 
Letters and public lectures are often such analyses of the dynamics 
of capitalism in terms of "Marx's Marxian" theory the logical 
consistency of which he has attempted to demonstrate. It just turns 
out that Kliman is probably not comfortable without defending his 
foundations in a comprehensive, profound and rational way. For this 
he should be criticized?

  Again it is nonsense to imply that Kliman has been interested in 
hermeunetic interpretations of  Marx as an end it itself. Kliman's 
hermeunetic contributions are obviously meant to underpin overt 
political writings which are submitted as contributions to the 
struggle against and thus the comprehension of capitalism. See his 
writing on the Asian Financial Panic and his criticisms of Brenner 
and Greider. And what about the overtly political class which he 
teaches at the Brecht Forum (see below). For goodness' sake, it does 
not seem that Kliman and McGlone are interested only in gardening as 
Levy maliciously implies at the end of his post.

Kliman (as well as Alejandro) sees that there are important political 
consequences to rejecting the thesis that the rate of profit is 
solely an index of the exploitation of one class by another, and 
instead maintaining that it is  influenced by the contribution of 
capital (Malthus), time (Bohm Bawerk), and/or the level of science 
and technology embodied in the conditions of production (the arguably 
implicit key to the neo Ricardian school, as Michael Lebowitz 
suggested long ago). Of course Kliman's theorizing on the FROP is an 
attempt to focus struggle against capitalism on the abode of 
production itself, rather than on competition or realization in the 

Levy's hostility to Kliman shows yet again an irrational and nasty 
side. Do note that I say all this as no friend of Kliman whose calls 
for retractions are in my opinion based on misleading information.

Yet too bad we are left with Levy's ad hominem, inaccurate and 
irrelevant criticism  while some serious debate by former list 
members will be occuring in Italy.

Perhaps the list coordinators will have some discussion about this?


st & 3rd Tuesdays
                  7:30 pm
                  6 sessions beginning April 16
                  Economic Crisis and Crisis Theory
                   Andrew Kliman & Ted McGlone

                  The world's major economies are caught in a 
"synchronized recession." Argentina's recent default could trigger a 
                  debt crisis. Living standards have plummeted in the 
Third World for two decades.This class will explore why capitalism is
                  rocked by recurrent economic crises and why, despite 
its continual technological revolutions, it is unable to create 
                  for all.
                  We will focus on Karl Marx's crisis theory, but also 
survey radical and mainstream alternatives. The differing political 
                  of these theories will be stressed throughout. We 
will also address the current debate over whether Marx's crisis 
theory is
                  internally inconsistent. The class is designed for 
both newcomers to crisis theory and those with prior knowledge. Please
                  contact Andrew_Kliman@msn.com to obtain readings for 
the first class.
                  Andrew Kliman and Ted McGlone teach economics at 
local colleges. Kliman's work on Marx's crisis theory and critique of
                  political economy has appeared in Capital and Class, 
Historical Materialism, Research in Political Economy, etc. McGlone 
                  taught several Brecht Forum classes on the 
revolutionary dialectic in the philosophies of Hegel and Dunayevskaya.

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