Re: [OPE] "Parasitism"

From: Gerald Levy <>
Date: Thu Jan 29 2009 - 06:48:22 EST


You wrote:

> I never assumed that "if there is parasitism then it will be clearly visible to all" and very
> carefully phrased my argument in that regard.

Yet, this is what you DID write previously:

> You argue it makes no sense so say "If it was true that all capitalists were simply parasites,
> then capitalism would have been overthrown long ago." I think it does makes sense, because
> when parasitism is publicly clearly visible it usually does not last very long.

And that, despite whatever intentions you might have had and your claim that you
"carefully phrased " your argument, DID assume EXACTLY what I said it did.

And, more to the point, your claim can not hold up under scrutiny for the
reasons I gave (see below). It represents a low grade of understanding about
what would be the necessary and sufficient conditions to overthrow capitalism.

In solidarity, Jerry

There are at least a couple of major problems with your reasoning:

1. it assumes that if there is parasitism then it will be clearly visible to all.

2. it assumes that if there is mass awareness of parasitism then the
parasites will be overthrown before too long.

Re 1: parasitism can take a form in which the essential character of the parasitic
relation is obscured and mystified. This is what happens under capitalism: the
market obscures and mystifies the existence of exploitation and the source of
surplus value.

Re 2: mass action requires more than mass awareness of exploitation. Certainly,
slaves in most slave societies were aware that the wealth of slave owners was
based on their exploitation but that - of and in itself - did not end slavery.

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Received on Thu Jan 29 06:50:43 2009

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