Welcome to Bookmarker!

This is a personal project by @dellsystem. I built this to help me retain information from the books I'm reading.

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vi

[...] A dangerous shift to the right in labor relations was underway.

It soon became clear that hte bosses were aiming to reverse the historic gains of the working class that dated back to the tempestuous class struggles of the Roosevelt New Deal era [...]

But the strength of organized labor was being sapped by more than just union busting and concessions bargaining. The greatest leverage capital enjoyed in its struggle to reverse the historic gains of the working class was the scientific-technological revolution percolating in corporate and univesrity laboratories, often supported by the Pentagaon.

THe anti-labor campagin was launched simultaneously and in conjunction with a technological assault on jobs and wages [...]

—p.vi Introduction (v) by Fred Goldstein 2 months, 3 weeks ago

[...] A dangerous shift to the right in labor relations was underway.

It soon became clear that hte bosses were aiming to reverse the historic gains of the working class that dated back to the tempestuous class struggles of the Roosevelt New Deal era [...]

But the strength of organized labor was being sapped by more than just union busting and concessions bargaining. The greatest leverage capital enjoyed in its struggle to reverse the historic gains of the working class was the scientific-technological revolution percolating in corporate and univesrity laboratories, often supported by the Pentagaon.

THe anti-labor campagin was launched simultaneously and in conjunction with a technological assault on jobs and wages [...]

—p.vi Introduction (v) by Fred Goldstein 2 months, 3 weeks ago
xvii

In fact, the revolution in technology and hte globalization of capitalist production and services are eroding the national determination of wages.

The wage level of the working class in the imperialist countries, under pressure of the global competition set up by the giant monopolies, is being increasingly determined internationally under the downward pressure of the wage level in the low-wage countries. From the point of view of the bosses, a worker in Detroit with health care, a pension, vacation and a living wage is overpriced, given the world labor market. Stating it from a Marxist point of view, the boss views wages paid that worker to be above the socially necessary value of labor power. [...]

—p.xvii Introduction (v) by Fred Goldstein 2 months, 3 weeks ago

In fact, the revolution in technology and hte globalization of capitalist production and services are eroding the national determination of wages.

The wage level of the working class in the imperialist countries, under pressure of the global competition set up by the giant monopolies, is being increasingly determined internationally under the downward pressure of the wage level in the low-wage countries. From the point of view of the bosses, a worker in Detroit with health care, a pension, vacation and a living wage is overpriced, given the world labor market. Stating it from a Marxist point of view, the boss views wages paid that worker to be above the socially necessary value of labor power. [...]

—p.xvii Introduction (v) by Fred Goldstein 2 months, 3 weeks ago
xviii

The labor leaders repeat the line of the propagandists of capital in calling the present situation an economic crisis - a classless characterization - when, in fact, it is a capitalist economic crisis. It is a crisis of the system of exploitation in which the bosses are trying to pass their crisis of profitability onto the backs of the workers.

this is kinda a typical trotskyist critique but tbh it's not wrong

—p.xviii Introduction (v) by Fred Goldstein 2 months, 3 weeks ago

The labor leaders repeat the line of the propagandists of capital in calling the present situation an economic crisis - a classless characterization - when, in fact, it is a capitalist economic crisis. It is a crisis of the system of exploitation in which the bosses are trying to pass their crisis of profitability onto the backs of the workers.

this is kinda a typical trotskyist critique but tbh it's not wrong

—p.xviii Introduction (v) by Fred Goldstein 2 months, 3 weeks ago
xx

[...] in Wage Labor and Capital, Marx discussed the question of the workers and the business cycle [...]

i couldnt find the exact translation that goldstein quotes in the book, but here's the translation from marxists.org:

We have thus seen that even the most favorable situation for the working class, namely, the most rapid growth of capital, however much it may improve the material life of the worker, does not abolish the antagonism between his interests and the interests of the capitalist. Profit and wages remain as before, in inverse proportion.

If capital grows rapidly, wages may rise, but the profit of capital rises disproportionately faster. The material position of the worker has improved, but at the cost of his social position. The social chasm that separates him from the capitalist has widened.

Finally, to say that "the most favorable condition for wage-labour is the fastest possible growth of productive capital", is the same as to say: the quicker the working class multiplies and augments the power inimical to it – the wealth of another which lords over that class – the more favorable will be the conditions under which it will be permitted to toil anew at the multiplication of bourgeois wealth, at the enlargement of the power of capital, content thus to forge for itself the golden chains by which the bourgeoisie drags it in its train.

—p.xx Introduction (v) by Fred Goldstein 2 months, 3 weeks ago

[...] in Wage Labor and Capital, Marx discussed the question of the workers and the business cycle [...]

i couldnt find the exact translation that goldstein quotes in the book, but here's the translation from marxists.org:

We have thus seen that even the most favorable situation for the working class, namely, the most rapid growth of capital, however much it may improve the material life of the worker, does not abolish the antagonism between his interests and the interests of the capitalist. Profit and wages remain as before, in inverse proportion.

If capital grows rapidly, wages may rise, but the profit of capital rises disproportionately faster. The material position of the worker has improved, but at the cost of his social position. The social chasm that separates him from the capitalist has widened.

Finally, to say that "the most favorable condition for wage-labour is the fastest possible growth of productive capital", is the same as to say: the quicker the working class multiplies and augments the power inimical to it – the wealth of another which lords over that class – the more favorable will be the conditions under which it will be permitted to toil anew at the multiplication of bourgeois wealth, at the enlargement of the power of capital, content thus to forge for itself the golden chains by which the bourgeoisie drags it in its train.

—p.xx Introduction (v) by Fred Goldstein 2 months, 3 weeks ago
xxii

The "golden chains" Marx referred to are not so golden anymore. Marx spoke of workers getting higher wages during a boom while the capitalist got even higher profits [...] these conditions no longer obtain.

For the last several decades, with a slight exception in the mid 1990s, workers' real wages have gone down or stagnated even during the periods of expanded capitalist accumulation - during upturns. Because of off-shoring, outsourcing and wage competition with workers in low-wage areas, workers in the United States went into massive personal debt and worked extra jobs; whole families worker just to compensate for the wage decline. [...]

really weird to think that this could just happen

—p.xxii Introduction (v) by Fred Goldstein 2 months, 3 weeks ago

The "golden chains" Marx referred to are not so golden anymore. Marx spoke of workers getting higher wages during a boom while the capitalist got even higher profits [...] these conditions no longer obtain.

For the last several decades, with a slight exception in the mid 1990s, workers' real wages have gone down or stagnated even during the periods of expanded capitalist accumulation - during upturns. Because of off-shoring, outsourcing and wage competition with workers in low-wage areas, workers in the United States went into massive personal debt and worked extra jobs; whole families worker just to compensate for the wage decline. [...]

really weird to think that this could just happen

—p.xxii Introduction (v) by Fred Goldstein 2 months, 3 weeks ago
xxiv

[...] sooner or later, capitalist property relations become a "fetter," a brake on further development of the productive forces. Society cannot move forward any longer because of the strangehold of private property. Revolution then ensues. The clash between socialized production and private ownership can only be resolved by socializing the ownership - that is, by bringing socialized ownership into harmony with socialized production and setting society on a new course of planned production for human need.

summarizing Marx's preface to A Contribution to the critique of political economy

—p.xxiv Introduction (v) by Fred Goldstein 2 months, 3 weeks ago

[...] sooner or later, capitalist property relations become a "fetter," a brake on further development of the productive forces. Society cannot move forward any longer because of the strangehold of private property. Revolution then ensues. The clash between socialized production and private ownership can only be resolved by socializing the ownership - that is, by bringing socialized ownership into harmony with socialized production and setting society on a new course of planned production for human need.

summarizing Marx's preface to A Contribution to the critique of political economy

—p.xxiv Introduction (v) by Fred Goldstein 2 months, 3 weeks ago
xxviii

Globalized production has now brought a worldwide epidemic of layoffs and mass unemployment.

Militarism, technological development, and anti-labor attacks were not enough to save the banks and corporations. Huge injections of credit were required. The ruling class resorted to speculation, credit bubbles, mortgage schemes, exotic financial instruments and all manner of fraud to make profits based on trading in fictitious capital. To overcome the limitations on the profitability of industry, unlimited paper profits were conjured up.

—p.xxviii Introduction (v) by Fred Goldstein 2 months, 3 weeks ago

Globalized production has now brought a worldwide epidemic of layoffs and mass unemployment.

Militarism, technological development, and anti-labor attacks were not enough to save the banks and corporations. Huge injections of credit were required. The ruling class resorted to speculation, credit bubbles, mortgage schemes, exotic financial instruments and all manner of fraud to make profits based on trading in fictitious capital. To overcome the limitations on the profitability of industry, unlimited paper profits were conjured up.

—p.xxviii Introduction (v) by Fred Goldstein 2 months, 3 weeks ago
xxxi

Many are promoting the notion that crisis automatically leads to uprisings and the collapse of capitalism. This is sterile, abstract thinking, far removed from the reality of the working class. It fails to take into account the disintegrating forces exerted upon the workers by a capitalist crisis of unemployment. The workers become atomized and lose the sense of strength derived from being together on the job. Their sense of confidence and of their potential power is undermined by a crisis.

(this was written in 2009)

—p.xxxi Introduction (v) by Fred Goldstein 2 months, 3 weeks ago

Many are promoting the notion that crisis automatically leads to uprisings and the collapse of capitalism. This is sterile, abstract thinking, far removed from the reality of the working class. It fails to take into account the disintegrating forces exerted upon the workers by a capitalist crisis of unemployment. The workers become atomized and lose the sense of strength derived from being together on the job. Their sense of confidence and of their potential power is undermined by a crisis.

(this was written in 2009)

—p.xxxi Introduction (v) by Fred Goldstein 2 months, 3 weeks ago
xxxiv

This is a social trend wholly unanticipated by those who had expected the great advances and discoveries in science and technology to have brought about "upward mobility." This is what was looked for from the scientific and technological revolution. Instead, all of the studies disclose a clear trend in the opposite direction.

Instead of raising the level of Black, Latin, women and other oppressed workers in capitalist society to that of the higher paid, more privileged, so-called aristocratic sector of workers, the scientific-technological revolution is mercilessly and ruthlessly leveling down and demolishing the higher social stratum in the working class and reducing it to the level of the lower paid.

—p.xxxiv Foreword (xxxiii) by Sam Marcy 2 months, 3 weeks ago

This is a social trend wholly unanticipated by those who had expected the great advances and discoveries in science and technology to have brought about "upward mobility." This is what was looked for from the scientific and technological revolution. Instead, all of the studies disclose a clear trend in the opposite direction.

Instead of raising the level of Black, Latin, women and other oppressed workers in capitalist society to that of the higher paid, more privileged, so-called aristocratic sector of workers, the scientific-technological revolution is mercilessly and ruthlessly leveling down and demolishing the higher social stratum in the working class and reducing it to the level of the lower paid.

—p.xxxiv Foreword (xxxiii) by Sam Marcy 2 months, 3 weeks ago
xxxv

[...] The Congressional Office of Technology Assessment report confirmed it: "Jobs in computer and semiconductor manufacturing are unlikely to rescue many workers from traditional manufacturing jobs because employment in these industries is small." And of course, the total number of jobs in computer and semiconductor industries is small by comparison with the overall workforce, which counts in the tens of millions.

But this is an evasion of the fundamental issue involved in the scientific-technological revolution. While it is a very narrow sector, its influence is decisive for all sectors of the economy.

These technological changes alter fundamental social trends and bring to the fore new political forces. It is therefore wholly inadequate to point to the mere number of workers directly involved in this particular narrow sector without showing its overwhelming influence in all phases of the capitalist economy. Moreover, high technology has fueled the enormous growth of the military-industrial complex.

—p.xxxv Foreword (xxxiii) by Sam Marcy 2 months, 3 weeks ago

[...] The Congressional Office of Technology Assessment report confirmed it: "Jobs in computer and semiconductor manufacturing are unlikely to rescue many workers from traditional manufacturing jobs because employment in these industries is small." And of course, the total number of jobs in computer and semiconductor industries is small by comparison with the overall workforce, which counts in the tens of millions.

But this is an evasion of the fundamental issue involved in the scientific-technological revolution. While it is a very narrow sector, its influence is decisive for all sectors of the economy.

These technological changes alter fundamental social trends and bring to the fore new political forces. It is therefore wholly inadequate to point to the mere number of workers directly involved in this particular narrow sector without showing its overwhelming influence in all phases of the capitalist economy. Moreover, high technology has fueled the enormous growth of the military-industrial complex.

—p.xxxv Foreword (xxxiii) by Sam Marcy 2 months, 3 weeks ago