Posted by: Doug Henwood | September 1, 2009

Inbox contradictions

Within minutes of each other this morning, I got two emails on the state of the world economy.

One, from In Defense of Marxism (such is the political scene that even Marxists are on the defensive—doesn’t anyone even dream of revolution anymore?), The Unfolding Capitalist Crisis – a nightmare for workers everywhere. Its nut graf: “[I]n many ways the present crisis is potentially even more serious than that of 1929-33. Its scope is much wider than the thirties and its impact has been far swifter.”

And, from a completely different perspective, this from Wall Street’s favorite economist, Ed Hyman of ISI: “Unprecedented synchronized global upturn…. To an unprecedented extent economies are recovering across the world at the same time.”

Which is it? My guess is somewhere in between. Hyman’s upturn is a bounce off a sharp decline, while Marxists.com’s analysis consists heavily of anxious quotes from bourgeois pundits uttered during that sharp decline, from December 2008 to June 2009. Average the two and you get a long period of a crappy global economy.

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Responses

  1. Seems to me the two dont really contradict one another. Yes, we had a huge financial meltdown, bigger than the thirties in its global scope and in the numbers involved. But the matter was remedied rather quickly, thanks to some politicians being a little less one-track minded than expected (due to, of course, the ever-looming specter of world revolution!).

  2. btw, I was a little disappointed by the helplessness on display toward the end of your interview with Adolph Reed. Diana Johnstone wasn’t quite so fresh out of ideas, or at least rallying points:

    The year 2008 was a watershed, with two major events that changed people’s vision of the world: the financial collapse and the Israeli assault on Gaza. The repercussions, the change in vision, are ongoing….It is urgent to provide political alternatives in terms of programs and leadership. If mass demonstrations are vulnerable to police repression and spoiling actions by smashers, other more varied and flexible means must be invented to communicate with citizens and broaden a coherent movement to combat militarization and build an economy centered on people’s genuine needs.

  3. “Average the two…” or just draw a damn line from the ’70s.

  4. Try the Kasama Project website for commentary, pretty tolerant and generally intelligent, by some who answer yes to the question “doesn’t anyone even dream of revolution anymore?

    I’m not affiliated with the project, and yes they are former RCP, and of course many who visit this website will reject them out of hand, but credit where it’s due.


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