Market socialism

From: Paul Cockshott (wpc@DCS.GLA.AC.UK)
Date: Mon Jul 26 2004 - 10:40:44 EDT

Jurriaan wrote 
The dispute among real Marxists has never been about whether there
be a market or no market, but (1) where markets are effective and
efficient, and where they are not, or violate social priorities, (2) how
these markets should function, and (3) to what extent it is possible to
replace markets by superior forms of resource allocation, which is the
overall aim. That is how Lenin, Trotsky and Bukharin approached it as
well. The goal is to abolish a situation where production of output is
mainly conditional on accumulation of private capital, rather than
conditional on social priorities agreed to by the majority of society.
this does not mean that a private sector would not continue to exist to
some extent, in areas where that is useful and productive, for example,
entrepreneurship. In large part, the large corporations are internally
already functioning as planned economies, and for basic consumer goods
demand is known, predictable and stable, and is supplied by just a few
corporations. In that sense, socialisation is objectively already
Paul C

Well presumably by Juriaans definition I am not a real Marxist as
I contend that Marx and Engels considered the abolition of the 
market and the abolition of money to be one of the main goals of
the communist movement.

It is clear enough that markets are compatible with socialism, as
we have observed socialist societies in which markets exist. The
doctrinal point concerns communism. Marx foresaw the abolition of
money in 'the first stage of communist society', before it had
even shaken off the notion of bourgeois right. It is clear that
Soviet authors like Lenin, Trotsky, Bukharin and Stalin all saw
some form of continuation of the market as being compatible with
socialism. In this they continued the doctrines of their mentor
Kautsky. But the effect of this was to project communism to a
never-nervier land, a receding mirage of material plenty, obscuring
the question of the social relations necessary for communist
economic forms to arise.

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