Masters Of War

Come you masters of war You that build all the guns You that build the death planes You that build all the bombs You that hide behind walls You that hide behind desks I just want you to know I can see through your masks. You that never done nothin' But build to destroy You play with my world Like it's your little toy You put a gun in my hand And you hide from my eyes And you turn and run farther When the fast bullets fly. Like Judas of old You lie and deceive A world war can be won You want me to believe But I see through your eyes And I see through your brain Like I see through the water That runs down my drain. You fasten all the triggers For the others to fire Then you set back and watch When the death count gets higher You hide in your mansion' As young people's blood Flows out of their bodies And is buried in the mud. You've thrown the worst fear That can ever be hurled Fear to bring children Into the world For threatening my baby Unborn and unnamed You ain't worth the blood That runs in your veins. How much do I know To talk out of turn You might say that I'm young You might say I'm unlearned But there's one thing I know Though I'm younger than you That even Jesus would never Forgive what you do. Let me ask you one question Is your money that good Will it buy you forgiveness Do you think that it could I think you will find When your death takes its toll All the money you made Will never buy back your soul. And I hope that you die And your death'll come soon I will follow your casket In the pale afternoon And I'll watch while you're lowered Down to your deathbed And I'll stand over your grave 'Til I'm sure that you're dead.------- Bob Dylan 1963

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Global Capitalism in One Country?

New Left Project | Articles | Global Capitalism in One Country?

Leo Panitch and Sam Gindin’s The Making of Global Capitalism is a landmark study of the construction and evolution of the American capitalist empire.  To my knowledge, it is the best in existence, wide-ranging in time as well as in space, perceptive, deeply informed, and sophisticatedly nuanced in its analyses. 
Its analytical focus is on ‘globalization and the state’, and its main general theoretical argument is that ‘states need to be placed at the centre of the search for an explanation of the making of global capitalism’.  This is, of course, a deliberately provocative statement, thrown into the face of the mainstream globalization discourse of the past quarter of a century on the left as well as on the right.  It is a very welcome re-focusing of our lenses, which I basically sympathize with.  Apart from trying to convey to my Cambridge students the still crucial importance of nation-states in current world society, I have found reason to take issue with the ‘Global cities’ conception of a few cities as ‘commanding’ the world economy, and increasingly detached from their state hinterlands.[1]
However, there are some basic problems hidden in the Panitch-Gindin formulation.  The first is the meaning of ‘global capitalism’, i.e. the explanandum.  It is nowhere defined and dated in the book, which makes any explanation of it rather foggy.  Apparently, the authors imply its emergence in the 19th century, as its first great crisis is located in the 1870s.  But just two lines before that, on the same page (331), we are told that it took American capitalism and the American state ‘to make global capitalism a reality’, which points to some later date.  And another few lines upwards on the same page, we are referred to the Communist Manifesto and informed that it was only by the beginning of the twenty-first century that capitalist social relations had spread ‘over the entire surface of the globe’. READ MORE

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