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

From: Paul Cockshott <>
Date: Thu Jan 14 2010 - 11:42:42 EST

The point I am making is that wars to divide and redivide the world only make sense if you are talking of territorial empires with customs barriers and the like.
That was the key issue in Lenins analysis of imperialism -- that it was the cause of world war. If you remove all the key features of territorial empire then why do you think it is still a likely cause of world war?
From: [] On Behalf Of GERALD LEVY []
Sent: Thursday, January 14, 2010 2:00 PM
To: Outline on Political Economy mailing list
Subject: RE: [OPE] Britain--parasitic and decaying capitalism: A comment

> 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.

Hi Paul:

The specific type - form - of imperialism can change. For instance, Neo-Liberal policies favored by the major imperialist powers in recent decades is somewhat different that the policies favored by them in the preceding period. This does not stop them from being imperialist any more than a change in the the specific location of individual spots on a zebra changes that animal into another species.

> The empires once established and ruled were protected by customs barriers,

contingent to, not necessary condition, for imperialism.

> were subjected to heavy taxation,


> and were exclusive areas for investment
> and emigration by the invading power.


> 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,

I didn't say or imply that - or the rest.

In solidarity, Jerry

> 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. _______________________________________________
ope mailing list

The University of Glasgow, charity number SC004401
ope mailing list
Received on Thu Jan 14 11:46:47 2010

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.8 : Sun Jan 31 2010 - 00:00:02 EST