RE: [OPE] Venezuela bans sale of Coke Zero

From: GERALD LEVY <gerald_a_levy@msn.com>
Date: Fri Jun 12 2009 - 09:54:41 EDT

> I could build, Jerry, an argument about the centrifugal forces of
> liberal institutions to support my neutrality thesis, but you are
> going to disregard it. So, I have to appeal to your personal condition
> in order to find some evidence of neutrality in liberal democracies.
> The fact that you are teaching at Pratt Institute in New York and
> graduated in an elite American university, despite your open hostility
> toward liberal democracy, demonstrates that this neutrality is not na´ve.
 
 
Alejandro:
 
To begin with, that's not an argument. You can't evaluate _social_
institutions with reference to _individual_ life experiences - although
that's part of the *mythology* of individualism and capitalist society:
e.g. the Horatio Alger myth, 'a dollar and a dream', 'if I did it anyone
can', et al ad nauseum.
 
In any event, the very example you raise disproves your point. The
private colleges I graduated from (New York University; the New School)
are capitalist firms. (btw, I can hear chuckling from some others on the list
at the assertion that they are 'elite'). Your ability to obtain the
commodity is dependent on whether you can afford the cost of admission and
other fees. Private universities are not 'neutral' institutions - they
are capitalist firms.
 
The fact that I teach at Pratt shows what? Well, it shows that I
produce ... surplus value. Only in capitalist society can you have
this perversion that you can be doing the same activity (in this case, teaching
the same subjects) which is counted as productive in one place and unproductive
in another depending (largely) on whether you are employed by a capitalist
firm or the state.
 
 
The educational system is most certainly _not_ neutral - this is particularly
obvious at earlier levels of education. To think otherwise is, once again, very
(almost mind bogglingly) naive.
 
 
> Your case is matchless in actually existing socialisms.

Yes, there isn't a system of privatized education in those countries. Education
isn't dependent there on income, inequality, and class.
 
In solidarity, Jerry
 
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Received on Fri Jun 12 09:58:36 2009

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