[OPE-L] Rethinking 'Capitalist Restoration' in China

From: glevy@PRATT.EDU
Date: Sun Nov 13 2005 - 17:46:42 EST

An article by Yiching Wu from the current issue of _Monthly Review_.

On a related note, there is an article published at countdownnet  entitled
"The Rise of China and the Demise of the Capitalist World
Economy: Exploring Historical Possibilities in the 21st Century" by
Minqui Lee:

In solidarity, Jerry


Monthly Review
November 2005

Rethinking 'Capitalist Restoration' in China

by Yiching Wu

Over a quarter century after China ventured onto the market path, it
is high time to take a hard look and ask some very tough questions.
That is what Martin Hart-Landsberg and Paul Burkett did in "China and
Socialism: Market Reforms and Class Struggle" (Monthly Review,
July-August 2004) and they concluded that "market reforms" have
fundamentally subverted Chinese socialism. The considerable costs of
economic liberalization, they argued, reflect the inherent
antagonisms of the capitalist system that is in the midst of being
imposed. "Market socialism" is at best a contradiction in terms, an
unstable formation that only awaits progressive degeneration: "the
Chinese government's program of 'market reforms,' which was allegedly
to reinvigorate socialism, has instead led the country down a
slippery slope toward an increasingly capitalist, foreign-dominated
development path."1 They also showed how market reforms generate
their own dynamic-how each stage "generated new tensions and
contradictions that were solved only through a further expansion of
market power, leading to the growing consolidation of a capitalist
political economy."2 Moreover, they insisted on a class-based
critique, an admirable position in an ideological milieu that deems
such emphasis unfashionable. Chinese reforms have produced such
consequences as income polarization, increased poverty, and
intensified exploitation, which are integral to processes of
capitalist marketization. The vital issue of class antagonism is thus
not to be glossed over by the neoliberal myth of "transition."

Hart-Landsberg and Burkett have made an important and timely
contribution to our understanding. However, the issues
involved-history, class, and socialism-are of such magnitude and
importance that they merit further discussion and development.

Full: http://monthlyreview.org/1105wu.htm

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