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91

The Machine Process and the Natural Decay of the Business Enterprise

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terms
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notes

Veblen, T. (2014). The Machine Process and the Natural Decay of the Business Enterprise. In Avanessian, A. and Mackay, R. (eds) #Accelerate: The Accelerationist Reader. Urbanomic, pp. 91-108

98

The machine process compels a more or less unremitting attention to phenomena of an impersonal character and to sequences and correlations not dependent for their force upon human predilection nor created by habit and custom. The machine throws out anthropomorphic habits of thought. It compels the adaptation of the workman to his work, rather than the adaptation of the work to the workman. The machine technology rests on a knowledge of impersonal, material cause and effect, not on the dexterity, diligence, or personal force of the workman, still less on the habits and propensities of the workman's superiors. Within the range of this machine-guided work, and within the range of modern life so far as it is guided by the machine process, the course of things is given mechanically, impersonally, and the resultant discipline is a discipline in the handling of impersonal facts for mechanical effect. It inculcates thinking in terms of opaque, impersonal cause and effect, to the neglect of those norms of validity that rest on usage and on the conventional standards handed down by usage. Usage counts for little in shaping the processes of work of this kind or in shaping the modes of thought induced by work of this kind.

—p.98 by Thorstein Veblen 4 years ago

The machine process compels a more or less unremitting attention to phenomena of an impersonal character and to sequences and correlations not dependent for their force upon human predilection nor created by habit and custom. The machine throws out anthropomorphic habits of thought. It compels the adaptation of the workman to his work, rather than the adaptation of the work to the workman. The machine technology rests on a knowledge of impersonal, material cause and effect, not on the dexterity, diligence, or personal force of the workman, still less on the habits and propensities of the workman's superiors. Within the range of this machine-guided work, and within the range of modern life so far as it is guided by the machine process, the course of things is given mechanically, impersonally, and the resultant discipline is a discipline in the handling of impersonal facts for mechanical effect. It inculcates thinking in terms of opaque, impersonal cause and effect, to the neglect of those norms of validity that rest on usage and on the conventional standards handed down by usage. Usage counts for little in shaping the processes of work of this kind or in shaping the modes of thought induced by work of this kind.

—p.98 by Thorstein Veblen 4 years ago

(adjective) of little or no consequence; trifling inconsequential / (adjective) having no force; inoperative

103

by making these rights nugatory on the one hand and by cutting away the spiritual foundations of them on the other hand

—p.103 by Thorstein Veblen
confirm
4 years ago

by making these rights nugatory on the one hand and by cutting away the spiritual foundations of them on the other hand

—p.103 by Thorstein Veblen
confirm
4 years ago