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

Date: Fri Jan 15 2010 - 09:57:12 EST

Hi Dave Z:
You ask a lot of questions. A downside to that is that you can't expect lengthy or complete replies since that would be demanding too much time of those you are communicating with. So - of necessity - my replies will be brief.

> 1. Which economies does imperialist Sweden dominate?
One nation doesn't have to (directly) dominate the economy of another
nation for it to be imperialist. It can be a relatively minor imperialist nation which has a share in the benefits of imperialism. When there are imperialist blocs not all of the members of the bloc have the same strength - one or two usually dominate but often others are important players. I thought I already made that clear in a previous message.

> 2. Which countries *do* dominate India?
Nations within the Indian sub-continent that are considered by the Indian state to be part of India. Note that I did not claim that India is an imperialist nation (perhaps it could be in time - I'm doubtful - but that's another question.)

>> Neo-colonialism describes a relationship in which the wealth and control of the resources in the formal colonized world still tends to be under the ownership and control of the imperialist nations.
> 3. Are these resources under the control of the imperialist *nations* or
> by capitalists based within the territory of that nation-state?
Ah, well that gets to the question of the capital/state relation under imperialism. The resources typically are owned by individuals and corporations but the state generally has an important role in control.
This, however, is a complicated question which can not be adequately addressed with a brief reply.

> 4. Does the resources owned and controlled by Indian capitalists abroad
> make India an 'imperialist nation'? If not, why?
One has to look at the overall character of development in the nation, its relationship to other nations and international institutions, and the scale of ownership of resources abroad (among other questions). Whether there is direct foreign investment *alone* does not determine whether a nation is imperialist.

> 5. which sets of economic agents are the recipients of the so-called
> 'bribe'? The concept implies a reward that persuades the agents to act
> differently from their normal interests.
To begin with, I was referring to social agents rather than just economic agents. State policy-makers are a prime example. There are many examples of this which are well documented (John Pilger, for instance, made a very good documentary on economic policies in Indonesia under Suharto which explained how this process worked there). There can (and often are) larger social entities (class fragments) which are bought off by imperialism (the US is quite adept at this: examples include CIA payments to the contras in Nicaragua in the 80's, various social layers - including fragments of the working class - in Chile prior to the 1973 coup; payments to 'opposition' groups in Venezuela under Chavez, et al).

>> Sweden certainly isn't the major imperialist nation in the world today. But they are a minor one and they share in the benefits of imperialism.
> 6. Who are 'they'?
Sweden - the nation. I guess I should have written 'it' but I thought my meaning was clear.

> 7. What are the benefits that you are referring to? Profits from
> investments abroad?
Partially. Also the benefits (profit-sharing - or some might say - super-profit sharing) that come from being part of an imperialist bloc).

>> And, as I mentioned before, they are part of the European Union - an imperialist bloc.
> 7. Which role does Britain --- arguably the leading imperialist state in
> Europe today --- play in this 'imperialist bloc'?
A major role, but they are not the leading nation in that bloc.

>> The specific type - form - of imperialism can change.
> This is about as theoretically useful as saying that capitalism and
> feudalism are merely different forms of surplus extraction.

I think Paul B addressed that issue in a reply to Paul C.
In sdolidarity, Jerry _______________________________________________
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Received on Fri Jan 15 10:06:28 2010

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