Capital as Power: A Study of Order and Creorder by Jonathan Nitzan, Shimshon Bichler

By Jonathan Nitzan, Shimshon Bichler

Traditional theories of capitalism are mired in a deep difficulty: after centuries of discussion, they're nonetheless not able to inform us what capital is. Liberals and Marxists either think about capital as an ‘economic’ entity that they count number in common devices of ‘utils’ or ‘abstract labour’, respectively. yet those devices are completely fictitious. not anyone has ever been capable of notice or degree them, and for a great cause: they don’t exist. in view that liberalism and Marxism depend upon those non-existing devices, their theories cling in suspension. they can't clarify the method that concerns such a lot – the buildup of capital.

This booklet deals a thorough replacement. in keeping with the authors, capital isn't really a slender fiscal entity, yet a symbolic quantification of energy. It has little to do with software or summary labour, and it extends a ways past machines and construction traces. Capital, the authors declare, represents the equipped energy of dominant capital teams to reshape – or creorder – their society.

Written in uncomplicated language, available to put readers and specialists alike, the publication develops a unique political economic climate. It takes the reader in the course of the heritage, assumptions and boundaries of mainstream economics and its linked theories of politics. It examines the evolution of Marxist considering on accumulation and the nation. And it articulates an cutting edge conception of ‘capital as power’ and a brand new heritage of the ‘capitalist mode of power’.

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Part I: dilemmas of political economy The first part introduces some of the key dilemmas of political economy. Chapter 2 identifies the two central dualities of political economy: (1) the separation between politics and economics, and (2) the further distinction, within economics, between the real and the nominal. These bifurcations, accepted by both liberals and Marxists, define what political economy does – and what it cannot do. And the most important handicap they impose is the inability to deal with power.

What a terrifying thought. Why write a book about capital? 5 Concerning the Chief Two World Systems (Galilei 1632). But, also, ‘there is no speculative thinking whose concepts do not reveal, on closer investigation, the empirical methods from which they stem’ (p. xvii). The two processes are dialectically intertwined. And, so, together with our theoretical schemes, we introduce new research methods; new categories; new ways of thinking about, relating and presenting data; new estimates and measurements; and, finally, the beginnings of a new, disaggregate accounting that reveals the conflictual dynamics of society.

The capitalist mode of power is counted in prices, and capitalization, working through the ever more encompassing price system, is the algorithm that constantly restructures and reshapes this order. Capitalization discounts a particular trajectory of expected future earnings. For any group of capitalists – typically a corporation – the relative level and pattern of earnings denote differential power: the higher and more predictable these earnings are relative to those of other groups of companies, the greater the differential power of the corporation’s owners.

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