After Capitalism — What?

The Swedish journalist Karin Pettersson discusses the work of her British colleague Paul Mason.

“A remarkable work”, she marvels in the tabloid Aftonbladet (August 18). “Mason writes that the old bulwark of the left-wing political struggle, the socially organized working class, is severely weakened today. Instead he puts his hopes in the emerging digital class….

“Information should be free, without loyalty to hierarchies or states. In the modern networks far from the logic of the market economy, free services like Wikipedia and Linux are being developed. And a modern form of barter economy is emerging….

“Mason’s utopia is far-reaching: an economic system in which wage labour and control by market forces are abolished. You don’t have to agree with him but his ideas are stimulating: a largely reformed financial sector, the introduction of a basic income to accelerate structural change, and a combination of state intervention and network solutions to counter the climate crisis.”

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2 responses to “After Capitalism — What?

  1. Here are 2 more links to Mason’s thoughts, a review and his own summary.
    This, from the review, captures the essence, I believe: you can find fault, fairly easily, but the bigger picture and questions raised need to have the serious discussions that are missing from the ‘shouty’ exchanges that pose as discussion these days.

    “The subtitle says it offers a guide to our future. It doesn’t do that, since Mason is as clueless about what might be coming next as everyone else. What it does do is illuminate the present in unexpected and occasionally revelatory ways. As a slice of futurology this book is no better than its many, equally speculative rivals. But as a spark to the imagination, with frequent x-ray flashes of insight into the way we live now, it is hard to beat. In that sense, Mason is a worthy successor to Marx.”

    http://www.theguardian.com/books/2015/aug/15/post-capitalism-by-paul-mason-review-worthy-successor-to-marx
    http://www.theguardian.com/books/2015/jul/17/postcapitalism-end-of-capitalism-begun

  2. “The reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated.” Mr. Capitalism.