RE: [OPE] Britain--parasitic and decaying capitalism: A comment

From: Paul Cockshott <>
Date: Thu Jan 14 2010 - 06:06:50 EST

The point I am making is that the division of the world that Lenin was talking about was into territorial empires of the great powers,
both WWI and WWII were wars to achieve such empires. Britain, France, Portugal, Holand, Russia, Turkey, USA had such empires, and
Germany Italy and Japan were seeking to achieve them. This was the kind of imperialism that killed tens of millions of people in two great wars.

The empires once established and ruled were protected by customs barriers, were subjected to heavy taxation, and were exclusive areas for investment
and emigration by the invading power. In many cases the imperial power sought to largely exterminate the native population or at the very least drive them from the best land.

None of this goes on today. The WTO agreements prevent the establishment of exclusive economic areas of this sort, and the wining of national independence by the former colonies put an end to the other outrages committed by the empires.

The 5 victorious powers do have vetos in the UN, but this was not by virtue of them being imperialist powers but because they were the opponents of Germany and Japan who had the largest forces in the field. If you are saying that this was the criterion for imperialism -- having a big army, then you are dropping all our previous arguments about capital export and financial influence and saying that imperialism is just a matter of armies. Your argument here implies that you think that the USSR was an imperialist power by virtue of being one of the 5 permanent members of the security council, and that Taiwan was likewise whilst it held a similar position.
From: [] On Behalf Of GERALD LEVY []
Sent: Thursday, January 14, 2010 1:17 AM
To: Outline on Political Economy mailing list
Subject: RE: [OPE] Britain--parasitic and decaying capitalism: A comment

> Have you ever heart of the world trade organisation?
> How does that fit with 'division of the world'?

Hi Paul C:

Have you ever heard of conditionality (re lending by international financial institutions)? Have you not heard what determines the clout
of individual imperialist nations within international lending agencies?
Are you not unaware of the ability of the major imperialist nations to
veto any decisions by the UN Security Council?

As for the other point you made about the end of colonialism, do
you not understand the character of neo-colonialism in the world today?

In solidarity, Jerry _______________________________________________
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Received on Thu Jan 14 06:10:21 2010

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