Cockshott Thread: Dickblast Towards a New Socialism

Tyler Jenkins
Tyler Jenkins

Since I couldn't find the Cockshott thread I am now creating a new thread to discuss direct-democracy, cybernetic planning and various assorted socialist ideas for the 21st century.

Attached: Arguements-for-Socialism.pdf (1.05 MB, Fundamentals of Comm. Prod….pdf)

File: 78cd38b757149e6⋯.pdf (914.25 KB)
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All urls found in this thread:

gen.lib.rus.ec/search.php?req=L. V. Kantorovich&column=author
youtube.com/watch?v=Kyc40bHfx3o
discord.gg/h6AGygg
researchgate.net/publication/299519892_Towards_a_new_socialism_Cockshott_and_Cottrell
reuters.com/article/us-blockchain-congo-cobalt-electric/ford-and-ibm-among-quartet-in-congo-cobalt-blockchain-project-idUSKCN1PA0C8
mises-media.s3.amazonaws.com/qjae7_1_6.pdf?file=1&type=document
marxismocritico.com/2017/10/17/ciber-comunismo-planificacion-economica-computadoras-y-democracia/
zigforums.com/thread/2793018/right-politics

Noah Hernandez
Noah Hernandez

Also, here is a great book for what to do regarding Revolutionary Strategy and the current modern situation that we and the working-class movement finds itself. Along with it is Cockshott's critique and appraisal.

David Murphy
David Murphy

Whoops, meant this book, not richter's revolutionary program.

Nobump

Michael Russell
Michael Russell

Some more books by him.

Jaxson Lee
Jaxson Lee

Requesting his upcoming histmat book

Luke Reyes
Luke Reyes

This is some great stuff OP, as someone new to socialist thought.

Eli Perry
Eli Perry

I've attached his work-in-progress version of How the World Works.

Your welcome comrade, glad I could help.

Evan Mitchell
Evan Mitchell

Anymore math heavy Marxists authors?

Adam Evans
Adam Evans

Ulrich Krause, Emmanuel Farjoun, Moshe Machover

Nathaniel Wright
Nathaniel Wright

Trying to read Classical Econophysics
Realize very quickly that maybe I should have stayed in High School a year longer and maybe gone to college instead of going straight to trade school.
This is literally one of the fields of research I want to jump into and gain an understanding of so I can better understand and explain Cockshott, and I can't even scratch the surface of it. Fuck.

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Connor Thomas
Connor Thomas

Don't worry about it comrade - that stuff is relatively advanced and you don't need to know it to understand / explain Cockshott to people.

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Grayson Russell
Grayson Russell

anyone have the archives from the last thread?

Brandon Kelly
Brandon Kelly

Hopefully one day I'll be able to get it, because it seems like a really interesting field of study that's not really touched upon when most people discuss economics. Like, I can discuss general economic concepts and I like to think sometimes I have pretty solid understanding of the classical view of capitalist economics and the Marxist view of those economics and capitalism as a whole, but this is something else entirely which goes far beyond just merely analysing generalized commodity production and equilibrium prices in capitalism. This is inserting thermodynamics and the like into the mix, and that just simultaneously astounds and bypasses me completely.

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Lucas Rivera
Lucas Rivera

Can anyone give me a simple explanation of how Cockshott economy would work? I'm a brainlet and I need help.

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Brandon Myers
Brandon Myers

Let us summarise key features of our conception of mature socialism:

1. The economy is based on the deliberate and conscious application of the
labour theory of value as developed by Adam Smith and Karl Marx. It is
a model in which consumer goods are priced in terms of the hours and
minutes of labour it took to make them, and in which each worker is paid
labour credits for each hour worked. Th e consistent application of this
principle eliminates economic exploitation.

2. Industry is publicly owned, run according to a plan and not for profi t.
Retail enterprises for example, work on a break-even rather than profi t
making basis. We envisage the transition to publicly owned enterprises
as being a gradual process that will occur after rather than before the
abolition of the wages system.

3. Decisions are taken [direct] democratically, at local, national and Union levels.
This applies in particular to decisions about the level of taxation and
state expenditure. Such democratic decision making is vital to prevent
the replacement of private exploitation with exploitation by the state.

Benjamin Wood
Benjamin Wood

This only tells me that the only thing different is the implementation of direct democracy.
How is Cockshott thought different from the labour theory of value?

Alexander Parker
Alexander Parker

I wish I could also understand it, but I've come to the conclusion that my work is better served in doing practical things - so for now I've accepted the division of labor which Cockshott has been afforded to be able to produce his wonderful work. However, I fully encourage you to study mathematics (especially applied math / calculus) and physics if you really want to understand econophysics. Its very advanced stuff, but if you put in enough effort you'll be able to get it. Just know that, as Marx said, the road to science is not an easy endeavor.

Jaxson Thomas
Jaxson Thomas

DUDE JUST HAVE COMPUTERS MAGICALLY SOLVE EVERYTHING LMAO
it actually works because the austrian economists are complete retards

Xavier Richardson
Xavier Richardson

He is not different from the labour theory of value, and in fact has proven with his colleagues that the LTOV still operates, as the labor theory of value applies to the dual-character of labor under capitalism. Where he is different is that in his book Towards a New Socialism, he has constructed a working model of socialism based on the experiences of the Soviet economies and modern-day economic physics that could actually be implemented by a socialist party. He also has worked out how social labor would be divided, how firms would track the necessary amounts of goods needed and sold, how computers have bypassed the socialist calculation problem, how surplus is gathered under a socialist economy, how to overcome problems that were central in the Soviet economy, how to best implement labor-saving technology while ensuring that labor is most efficiently applied in firms, amongst a host of other things he has worked out. So, if you are interested in questions about how a socialist economy would be ran, then read Towards a New Socialism and watch the videos on his youtube channel.

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Thomas Mitchell
Thomas Mitchell

kek

Joseph Ortiz
Joseph Ortiz

Shit I forgot my shitposting flag I did actually laugh.

Nathaniel Wright
Nathaniel Wright

As someone who became acquainted with this work after his university and graduate stuff, I can tell you this: You're more than capable if you're willing to afford yourself the time to learn these matters correctly and comprehensively. It is an immensely rewarding field to work in, despite the difficulties of research. I can only say that should any opportunity arise and present itself, seize upon it - we can always use more motivated persons who are actually interested in the material

Hunter Watson
Hunter Watson

Thank you for your kind words comrade. May I ask what your field of study in uni was and what you did to get to a point where you could contribute to econophysics?

Kevin Davis
Kevin Davis

Mathematics and Physics, double major, at the start. Added on Political Economy later on. I have always been a Marxist, but I stuck with typical and inoffensive research topics to avoid striking a bad chord with anyone. There is an enormous amount that can be interacted with in the field that doesn't require you to be intimately acquainted with higher methods of approximate analysis. I spent some time doing independent research into methods of computational economics after reading about developments being made in the field for comparative computation (attempting to find a practical application for quantum computation over classical computation) and found this huge cache of Glushkov/Kantorovich/etc. work that seemed immensely interesting. The main thing you get out of applying an existing background to the mix is that you have a better ability to recreate and simulate new results, but theres nothing in there that should stop you from pushing forwards and consuming as much material as you want - just the time is hard to find to sit and read the stuff.

Blake King
Blake King

a model in which consumer goods are priced in terms of the hours and minutes of labour it took to make them, and in which each worker is paid labour credits for each hour worked.

Stupid but sincere question even if it sounds like anti commie propaganda – what would ensure efficiency or productivity? Why would I be trying to get the work done quick and well if dragging it out gets me more credits?

Charles Martinez
Charles Martinez

I guess there would still be people checking that you're actually doing your job, somehow you need to know if someone is contributing.

Jackson Martin
Jackson Martin

Chapter 2, page 34, in Towards a New Socialism states the following:

We may well wish to argue that socialism should provide favourable general social conditions for the production of a surplus, if workers feel that they are working ‘for the good of all’ rather than for the profits of a ‘boss’. But it would
be naive to assume that this will solve all problems. Aside from making general
use of the strategies of ‘enlightened’ capitalist enterprises (public recognition
of worker achievement, construction of democratic working environment) there
may still be some need to gear individual pay to productivity. Morale problems
can develop if people believe that they are putting in more than the usual effort ‘for nothing’ or that a colleague is slacking, coasting along on the backs of his fellows.

One way of gearing reward to effort would be an economy-wide system for
the grading of labour. For instance, there could be three grades of labour, A, B
and C, with B labour representing average productivity, A above average and C
below average. New workers might start out as ‘B’ workers and then have their
performance reviewed (either at their own initiative or at the instigation of the
project for which they work) with the possibility of being regraded as A or C.
Note that these grades have nothing to do with education or skill level, but are
solely concerned with the worker’s productivity relative to the average for her
trade or profession.

These grades of labour would be regarded for planning purposes as ‘creating value’ at different rates. Rates of pay would correspond to these differential
productivities: grade ‘B’ workers would receive one labour token per hour, ‘A’
workers rather more, and ‘C’ workers rather less. The rates of pay would have
to be fixed in such proportions as to keep the total issue of labour tokens equal
to the total hours worked. The exact rates of pay could be worked out automatically by computers once the number of people in each grade was known.

There need be no stigma attached to being a ‘C’ worker; such a worker
basically chooses to work at an easier pace—and correspondingly accepts a
somewhat lower rate of consumption. Not everyone has to be a Stakhanovite,
and there is no call for resentment of the less productive worker if he makes no
pretense at being anything else. But in this way the highly productive worker’s
contribution is recognised and encouraged, while at the same time the planners
get a more accurate fix on the distribution of social labour.

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Camden Roberts
Camden Roberts

Also, sorry for the formatting, I just copied and pasted from the pdf.

Austin Baker
Austin Baker

I studied sociology, with an emphasis in qualitative political economy of globalization - so I don't really have the math background nor am going into a field that requires it either. Is it possible to review the literature or econophysics and gain even w/o a background in maths / physics?

Nicholas Price
Nicholas Price

The literature, absolutely. Econophysics, you can definitely keep up with a non-mathematics background. Don't expect to be reproducing proofs and staring at stochastic distributions all the time, there's plenty you can understand about all of it without worrying about the methods and material of the research aspect. That's what people forget when they try to hop into a book like Classical Econophysics , they notice unfamiliar ground and they worry they won't be able to make heads or tails - and that's totally okay! The work was generally intended for a highly specialized audience and those whom have the background to continue the work. That does not, by ANY MEANS , mean that there isn't easily approachable and digestible works that can give the non-field reader an excellent idea of the work being done and its value. I hope you find what you're looking for in the way of information!

Jose Moore
Jose Moore

That's awesome that I can still gain from it without needing a math based background. Do you recommend any beginner or introductory readings, or should I just dive into Classical Econophysics?

Daniel Anderson
Daniel Anderson

As I'm wont to do with most topics, always see if there are background writings (essay, journal, article, etc.) by the authors with whom you've taken an interest. Make SciHub and LibGen your friends in searching for all the material that you'd like to read. As far as what I'd recommend, I'd say just hop right in, and as you read you'll no doubt find connections and citations of other works which you might interest yourself in

Thomas Bell
Thomas Bell

intimately acquainted with higher methods of approximate analysis
Hey, I got that book too, but I believe it was called approximate methods of higher analysis.

Jeremiah Gonzalez
Jeremiah Gonzalez

If you're referring to the book by Kantorovich, yes, I believe that was the name. But I was talking about not needing higher levels of mathematical analysis (such as real, complex, and functional analysis) to interact with a lot of the material

Nathaniel Walker
Nathaniel Walker

Please comrade math-magician, Do you have some specific reading tips for someone who is already aquainted with a reasonable understanding of university level mathematics and probability theory? Also please upload some of the stuff from the Kantorovich treasure trove.

Alexander Cruz
Alexander Cruz

I apologize, there is an excellent compendium piece called Essays in Optimal Planning which I have in text form, but am completely unable to find a pdf form. It includes many shorter pieces, essays, and polemics that Kantorovich wrote since he was engaged in the optimization of a plywood factory, which would lead to the development of linear programming.

In all candor, I am not all too certain of what to tell you as far as what you can do outside of using modern tech (Mathematica, Matlab, etc.) to attempt to create a simulation of the observed phenomena. This is kinda boring and tedious, but it is an excellent exercise, especially since we'll be dealing with a very limited framework as far as parameters and data, given the circumstances of the literature. Since we're both familiar with a lot of the same groundwork, I can assume your familiarity with a lot of these pieces and their format - many truncated and parsed equations passing by very quickly, as we were always used to in non-proofs based mathematics courses. I usually attempt to extrapolate from what is given in the book to attempt to recreate a similar problem, on paper hopefully, that will prove a practical example of how the material works. That, or you could go to the compendium/appendix in the back and work out the proofs of the theoretic material, yourself, just to make sure you're following along! If it is a really in depth text, you can do this in between lines (where applicable), as many of these books will not provide the steps so you can just fill them in for yourself as practice.

Besides that, just keep a notepad or preferable means of recording observations to the side so that you can mark specific areas where needed and also have scratch paper ready if you want to work out the quantitative stuff. There's no magic involved, so just read as you please!

Ryder Howard
Ryder Howard

Why would I be trying to get the work done quick and well if dragging it out gets me more credits?
Because dragging it out doesn't get you more credits. It'd go by the socially necessary labour time, i.e. the average amount of time taken to produce a given thing when working at an average level of effort. Work less, get less.

Dominic Jones
Dominic Jones

(me)
And apparently it is taking the server too long to submit these pdfs so I'll just give you a useful link where you can download a lot of the texts, yourself:
gen.lib.rus.ec/search.php?req=L. V. Kantorovich&column=author

Leo Cook
Leo Cook

/thread

Joshua Lopez
Joshua Lopez

Has Cockrifle ever suggested to deal with the inventive problem with equal wages? How is skilled labour going to be "paid"? AFAIK the USSR greatly equivalised wages under eyebrow man which eventually resulted in stagnation.

Juan Flores
Juan Flores

For skilled labor, the argument for higher pay in capitalist society is money spent on training/schooling and wages forgone while being educated. In his model, and most socialists agree, education is free of charge and students are payed for their labor as students. These two things negate the reasons for skilled labor being paid higher in capitalist society.

Parker Foster
Parker Foster

I wouldn't say that equivalized wages was what eventually resulted in stagnation, it was more an additional problem that led to stagnation (not because equivalized wages is faulty, but because how the Soviet economic system worked). Here's what Cockshott states on the matter in Arguements for Socialism:

It is easier for an economy to grow rapidly during the initial phase of industrialisation
when labour is being switched from agriculture to industry. Afterwards growth has to rely upon improvements in labour productivity in an already industrialised economy, which are typically less than the difference in productivity between agriculture and industry.

Labour was probably not used as efficiently in Soviet industry as it was in the USA or West Germany. In one sense, or course the USSR used labour very effectively, it had no unemployment and the proportion of women in full time employment was higher than in any other country. But a developed industrial economy has to be able transfer labour to where it can be most efficiently used. Under capitalism this is achieved by the existence of a reserve of unemployment, which, whilst it is inefficient at a macro-economic level, does allow rapid
expansion of new industries.

The Soviet enterprise tended to hoard workers, keeping people on its books just in case they were needed to meet future demands from the planning authorities. This was made possible both by the relatively low level of money wages, and because the state bank readily extended credit to cover such costs. The low level of money wages was in turn a consequence of the way the state raised its revenue from the profits of state enterprises rather than from income taxes.

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Ian James
Ian James

Learning mathematics and physics is easy today. Plenty of online resources to do it. Use Khan Academy and MIT OCW. Download some textbooks from LibGen. Just determine what you need to know and work through it. It's actually pretty fun once you get going.

Jacob Myers
Jacob Myers

All enterprises are collectively owned.
People who work at said enterprises are paid with labor tokens, representing the portion of the time they spent laboring that doesn't go into social purposes.
Labor tokens can be spent at storehouses to get consumption goods, at local enterprises to get services.
Goods are priced at stock clearing prices, so there are no shortages or gluts except when we desire so.
Labor content is also marked. People are always aware of the amount of labor that went into something.
We mark down all presently used productive techniques, the amount of goods and labor used as input, the goods that are the output.
Minimize amount of labor needed to produce goods.
When price exceeds labor content, we redistribute labor throughout the economy so that more is produced, reducing the price and again equalizing the two values.
When price drops below labor content, we redistribute labor throughout the economy so that less is produced, increasing the price and equalizing the two values.
Further planning priorities are set through direct democracy.

Jayden Murphy
Jayden Murphy

DUDE JUST HAVE COMPUTERS MAGICALLY SOLVE EVERYTHING LMAO
it actually works because the austrian economists are complete retards

Austrian economics btfo forever. This is hilarious.

Kevin Davis
Kevin Davis

You joke, but that's the crux of Cyber Communism.
Check if you want it straight from the horse's mouth, but I'll give an example. Imagine an economy with 3 workers, who together make goods totalting to 3 labor hours. Remember that in Cybercom, the number of labor vouchers given has to exactly equal the value of the outputs, or you'll get shortages. Ideally in this situation, each worker would do the same level of work and each earn 1 labor voucher, for a total of 3 distributed. If the first worker slacked off, while the second one busted his ass, the labor vouchers could be redistributed so that the first worker earns 0.5 vouchers, the second 1.5 vouchers, and the third 1 voucher.

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Christopher Morris
Christopher Morris

Not a big fan of the "A B C" scores. The terminology should be different, since letter grades still imply a ranking from better to worse. Something like "intensive, standard, and casual" is better to get the idea across.
Another problem I have is that these grades are only awarded after a worker has shown their performance. It seems better to me to allow workers to enter them according to their own desire, but to set different standards of them. When someone gets employed at an enterprise they'll get the option to choose their grade. If an "intensive" level doesn't work out for them, they'll be able to either get help to improve their performance (if they are motivated for this), or choose to go for another grade instead. That would cause less resentment among coworkers. The extra pay attached to more intensive work would only be awarded after a trial period, to discourage people lying about their intentions.

Levi Perez
Levi Perez

Hey lads just dropping in to support the thread.
Maybe one day I can deal with my focus issues and actually contribute in some way or read a book, even though I have a pretty good grasp on most of this stuff due to my programming education / sporadic add hyperfocus.

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Bentley Gomez
Bentley Gomez

(Hopefully this stuff will become much more understandable after I start my masters degree in CS)

Lincoln Bell
Lincoln Bell

761 pages in Russian
Th-thanks.

Gabriel Reed
Gabriel Reed

its the only one that didn't error out when I was trying to post :🇬🇧🇬🇧🇬🇧((

Henry Jones
Henry Jones

Bump

Kevin Barnes
Kevin Barnes

I have a question. How such an economy model presented by Cockshott implemented in one country could coexist with other conventional liberal capitalist countries?

Let's say one country decides to adopt this kind of system, their newly elected government follows Cockshott proposals. By using labor tokens/credits instead of money. How the exchange with other countries could be done, or to import/export goods and services?

Jaxson Turner
Jaxson Turner

I know he wrote about this in relation to what to do in regards to hard currency, but it is currently late - so I’ll respond in full tomorrow and also look to see what he says about your question.

Anthony Stewart
Anthony Stewart

TANS chapter 10 covers this. TL;DR:
Trade deficits are actually desirable for socialist states
Loans from international banks should be avoided like the plague
Importation of foreign currency is banned
Imports are exclusively plaid for with labor tokens, with the additional ability for them to circulate among the capitalist nations
Likewise, exports can only be bought with labor tokens.
The socialist state doesn't need to maintain a conversion rate

Brandon Thomas
Brandon Thomas

youtube.com/watch?v=Kyc40bHfx3o

vid about brexit

John Barnes
John Barnes

I wanted to post the program that Richter wrote and Cockshott agrees with so that we can discuss it.

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Jayden Green
Jayden Green

tl;dr to non-stem faggots?

Robert Watson
Robert Watson

Trade deficits are actually desirable for socialist states

oof

Parker Hall
Parker Hall

Its a political program, nothing to do with STEM.
Why oof?

Brandon Thomas
Brandon Thomas

I'm also a non-stem faggot, so heres the tl;dr: (sorry beforehand for bad formatting, im lazily copying and pasting from the program)

1. The ecological reduction of the normal workweek – including time for workplace democracy, workers’
self-management, etc. through workplace committees and assemblies – to a participatory-democratic
maximum of 32 hours or less without loss of pay or benefits.

2. Full, lawsuit-enforced freedom of class-strugglist assembly and association for ordinary people, even within the military.

3. The expansion of the ability to bear arms and to general self-defense towards enabling the formation of people’s militias based on free training.

4. The expansion of local autonomy on questions of local development through participatory budgeting and oversight by local assemblies.

5. closed-list, proportionally representative political formation in bourgeois states.

6. The combating of the anti-meritocratic personal inheritances of both poverty by children and ruling-class wealth, with the latter entailing the abolition of all remaining nobilities and the
application of all funds derived from public, anti-inheritance appropriations of not some but all the relevant productive or other non-possessive properties for public use.

7. Socio-income democracy through direct proposals and rejections, at the national level and above, regarding all formal and effective tax rates on all types of income & annual plebiscites with the right to create or raise upper tax rates on a steeply graduated basis.

8. The application of not some but all economic rent of land towards exclusively public purposes – such as the abolition of all indirect and other class-regressive taxation – by first means of land value “taxation”.

9. Direct guarantees of a real livelihood to all workers… including the universalization of annual, non-deflationary adjustments for all non-executive remunerations, pensions, and insurance benefits to at least match rising costs of living.

10. The institution of income-based or preferrably class-based affirmative action.

11. The mandatory private- and public-sector recognition of professional education, other higher
education, and related work experience “from abroad,” along with the transnational standardization
of such education and the institution of other measures to counter the underemployment of educated immigrants.

12. he abolition of all copyright, patent, and other intellectual property laws, as well as of all restrictions on the non-commodity economy.

13. The genuine end of “free markets” – including in unemployment resulting from workplace closures, mass sackings, and mass layoffs – by first means of non-selective encouragement of, and unconditional economic assistance (both technical and financial) for, pre-cooperative worker buyouts of existing
enterprises and enterprise operations.

14. Full independence of the mass media from concentrated private ownership and control by first means of
workplace democracy over mandated balance of content in news and media production, heavy
appropriation of economic rent in the broadcast spectrum, unconditional economic assistance
(both technical and financial) for independent mass media cooperative startups – especially at
more local levels, for purposes of media decentralization – and anti-inheritance transformation of all the relevant mass media properties under private ownership into cooperative property.

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Levi Williams
Levi Williams

Litterally importing more stuff than you export is bad, somehow.
Getting free shit is bad.

Nathan Hughes
Nathan Hughes

Class based affirmative action

?????????

Adrian Russell
Adrian Russell

Basically reserving spots in government, industry, education, etc. for people who are either wage-laborers or from working-class families. Essentially people from the income bracket of the poverty level to probably around 50k (though that number can be debated obviously).

Chase Wright
Chase Wright

You know a country that ran large trade deficits and never tried to address them besides papering it over with oil exports?

Venezuela.

They import literally everything. Trade deficits are indicative of weak national industry.

The fact that Cockshott advocates for trade deficits makes me laugh. I guess he's not as smart as you guys all think he is.

Brody Phillips
Brody Phillips

what program is this?

Oliver Long
Oliver Long

You clearly have no idea what you're talking about.

Trade deficits aren't the reason why Venezuela is in trouble, otherwise the US would be in a crisis as well right now (the US has huge trade deficits at about 0.5 trillion).

Venezuela used high oil prices to pay for increased public spending. Once the oil bubble burst, then they tried to fix the revenue contraction by printing money, which only made the problem worse.

Alexander Diaz
Alexander Diaz

Did you miss the part where I stated that trade deficits were indicative of weak national industry and Venezuela imported literally everything? What do you think happens to socialist states when they have no national industries producing stuff? It's almost like trade deficits are bad if you have nothing to fall back on.

The only reason the US gets away with it is because for whatever reason (petrodollar, status of USD as world reserve currency, etc.) everyone loves buying US debt, thus financing their import purchasing binge. Choosing the premier capitalist world power that is the exception to the rule is not a very good argument.

Josiah Collins
Josiah Collins

It’s the Revolutionary Program by J. Richter would I posted in the op. It’s on Cockshott’s reality website.

Aiden Bell
Aiden Bell

No, I was referring to the software.

Jonathan Bennett
Jonathan Bennett

What do you think happens to socialist states when they have no national industries producing stuff
Okay, I concede you're right here. It seems like this would be a problem. I'm interested in further explanation of the pro-trade deficit position.

Carson Ortiz
Carson Ortiz

Oh, it’s adobe in Linux Mint.

Parker Powell
Parker Powell

REMINDER TO JOIN THE CYBERNETIC GANG DISCORD

discord.gg/h6AGygg

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Cameron Collins
Cameron Collins

researchgate.net/publication/299519892_Towards_a_new_socialism_Cockshott_and_Cottrell
You can read why he supports trade deficits over surpluses, he discusses it starting on page 118. He also goes over ways a socialist government could prevent uncertainties in the economy due to imports. It's ridiculous to think a socialist government would forgo all national production in favor of imports in the name of keeping a trade deficit. Nobody is arguing for striving for the highest amount of imports and lowest national production possible, but that a trade deficit can be beneficial to a socialist economy and raise efficiency of labor and therefore lower total social labor cost.

Logan Carter
Logan Carter

Trade deficits are indicative of weak national industry.
Indicate. Not cause.

And you have to be absolutely retarded to think that getting litterally more stuff than it costs you is a problem for a socialist nation.

From investopedia:
In the long run, however, a trade deficit may lead to the creation of fewer jobs. If the country is importing more goods from foreign companies, prices will go down, and domestic companies may be unable to produce and compete at the lower prices. Manufacturing companies are usually hit the hardest when a country imports more than it exports, and the result is fewer jobs or lower incomes for employees because of the competition from imports. Fewer jobs mean that fewer goods are produced in the economy which, in turn, could lead to even more imports and a greater deficit.
As you see, trade deficits are only detrimental to a capitalist society because they undercut domestic production and thus domestic profit in favour of profit in foreign nations. Since we do not have to compete or make profits in socialism, it makes no sense to try and export our resources, our labour, to capitalist just to keep some numbers on a sheet of paper lower or high.

From TANS:
The classical economists developed the labour theory of value in a struggle to understand the underlying workings of the economy. They wanted to know what was going on in the real economy beneath the `veil' of money. One of their objectives was to produce arguments against the dominant mercantilist theories which justified restrictions on imports as a way of preventing money owing out of the country. The classical economists argued that this concern with monetary flows was spurious and that it was of no benefit to a country to run a trade surplus. For what did a trade surplus mean but that a country had exchanged useful commodities for gold which was of no use at all? A country that continually runs a trade surplus is giving over to the rest of the world a portion of its annual product for which it gains nothing in return. A trade surplus, far from being desirable, actually impoverishes a country.
In words, profits are bounded by purchases by proprietors and the trade surplus. The trade surplus allows higher money profits. This monetary profit is over and above what the proprietors spend on consumption and investment (Sp), and via the mediation of the financial system, accumulates as holdings of overseas assets.
A trade surplus only serves to increase the profitability of domestic capitalists. A trade deficit can only hurt the worker (by destroying jobs) if you live under a market system. A trade surplus always damages the workers by removing consumption from them to increase profits.

Trade deficits are GOOD.

Christian Hill
Christian Hill

getting useful things is bad
getting pieces of paper with numbers printed on them is good
^These posts happen when you connect a potato to the internet.

But let's run with the idea. Suppose a socialist country amasses a ton of currency from a non-socialist country as a deliberate policy, to have this buffer of foreign cash for bad times. (Spoiler alert: The non-socialist country isn't on the best terms with you.) The bad times happen, and now what? Do you think a whole bloody country can just plan and act like an unimportant individual person? There is no guarantee that the currency you got years ago will get you now what you could get with it years ago, and I'm not only speaking of inflation. Politicians in the other country can enact export tariffs and outright ban exports of certain categories. The foreign money is like a vague promise by somebody who is not your friend, and there is nothing in that you can rely on. Getting things in the here and now means you will have these things, even if the foreign country's policies change after the exchange.

Brandon Nelson
Brandon Nelson

Does cockshott have an opinion on Stalin?

Logan Brooks
Logan Brooks

I see. So, basically, Cockshott's argument is that if you apply the labor theory of value to goods flowing in and out of the country, having a trade deficit means your economy grows in goods without having to spend x amount of labor to create those goods.

Anthony Hernandez
Anthony Hernandez

cybernetic socialist anons, opinions on this?
reuters.com/article/us-blockchain-congo-cobalt-electric/ford-and-ibm-among-quartet-in-congo-cobalt-blockchain-project-idUSKCN1PA0C8

I'm unsure if these applications of blockchain technology require the same amount of energy usage as mining bitcoin, but if not could it be used as a way to calculate inputs in real time?

Ryan Perry
Ryan Perry

I actually discussed something like this in an email with him a while back. I was confused how he could use the law of value and labor values in socialism given that they emerged in capitalism as a function of capitalist competition. He said that workers would be judged by against the minimum not the average amount of labor required for production. I'm not sure if that contradicts what he says there, but it seems like it. Let me see if I can get the emails.

Kevin Jones
Kevin Jones

In terms of global accounting in a socialist planning system, not every country can have a trade deficit. Someone must be producing this surplus for people to use. and if that's the case, is it just because they're more productive? I would have to imagine they'd insist on some kind of extra recompense in return for this, given the political dynamics involved. We saw these dynamics in Nigeria and Yugoslavia, for example, one region is more productive or contributes more to the country's GDP and this produces intense tension between the ethnic groups which inhabited each respective region.

Hunter Miller
Hunter Miller

Here I found them.

See, the issue is that here he implies that as the minimum decreases the average would also decrease, but in the system he describes there there's no material incentive for the top grade of laborers to increase their productivity unless there was some form of discipline or other incentive based on being the top performer.

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Levi Sanders
Levi Sanders

mises-media.s3.amazonaws.com/qjae7_1_6.pdf?file=1&type=document
reminder that you are just circle jerking in your echo chamber

Grayson Miller
Grayson Miller

Reminder that this very paper has been BTFO by multiple people, including Cockshott himself IIRC

Henry Green
Henry Green

I am just having my monthly mental breakdown because I can't have a coherent worldview and I always doubt leftism no matter how much I try to reinforce my leftist beliefs and want to read. Help please

Juan Price
Juan Price

Hello, newfriend. Already read it. Here's Cockshott's response.

Brandon Gray
Brandon Gray

Outline of an EU-wide transition to socialism - Cockshott has covered a lot of this stuff in his videos and TANS, but it's an interesting read. Thoughts?

William Peterson
William Peterson

eu-"communism"
lol

Carson Butler
Carson Butler

We have outlined a model for the conversion of EU type economies
lol
that differs from the tradition deriving from German Social Democracy.
lol
The three stages of transition are shown below as a table.
lol

Why is Dickblast so ridiculous when it comes to actual politics?
muh "direct democracy"
lol
muh "conversion of EU to proper communism"
lol

You have to be seriously retarded to ascribe to DickBlast when it comes to actual politics.

Kayden Jones
Kayden Jones

this is the same paradigm he was doing with the USSR originally. He wanted to reform it to what he described in towards a new socialism. Fundamentally, however, i think that view of historical transformation is extremely flawed.

Ryan Walker
Ryan Walker

I agree completely. His project – while absolutely enlightening when compared to the total lack of "utopian" thinking – is ultimately flawed, because he never went beyond a reactive politics.

His "direct democracy," for instance, based on ancient-Greek fetishism is a FUCKING JOKE for a proper Marxist.

TL;DR: I have a hate-love relationship towards Dickblast. I can't take him seriously beyond his mechanics (how to plan economics).

Such a fucking shame.

Tyler Walker
Tyler Walker

don't stop at just politics, tans (in parts) comes off as a book by someone who has never read the 1844 manuscripts, so the book is still pretty good, it's just that with him its more about how he gets to places, and the reasoning he uses, less than the results, so he comes off as a bruno bauer waiting for a marx to use his tools for actual good theory

Charles Phillips
Charles Phillips

I think there's a lot that can be learned from Athens in relation to parallels between a dictatorship of the proletariat. but the key issue is that both situations are the result of their historical contexts, and so will any future communism or revolution. While it's an attractive thought for an academic, you can't expect these top down reforms to actually be realized through the existing institutions. Expecting that throws everything marxists know about historical development out the window.

Elijah Turner
Elijah Turner

1. The argument in TANS against a trade surplus was about the socialist region's trade with the non-socialist part of the world. 2. It is possible to have a mutual trade surplus of sorts if different countries use different measures. E. g. if country A and country B have different local labor-time production costs, with either country having higher labor-time costs for some stuff than the other, they can both in a sense obtain more hours than they give (each country measuring the products it exports and imports in terms of its local labor costs).

Juan Gomez
Juan Gomez

I'll go over your concerns soon. But does anyone have the works of the Soviet Economist V.S. Dadajan, especially his works on a four department reproduction system. Heres the article / book in German, but i'd like to find an English version. Okonomische Berechnungen nach dem Modell der erweiterten Reproduktion, Berlin 1969. Mandel references it in the preface to Capital Volume 2.

Robert Johnson
Robert Johnson

I love TANS as much as anyone here, but how does Cockshott think such a thing can get to power? Through democracy? It's absolutely ridiculous.

Camden Perez
Camden Perez

Why don't you try killing yourself buddy
Alternatively you could read a fucking book

Caleb Rivera
Caleb Rivera

Through a mass, working-class movement that uses the political state as one tactic amongst others (aka original pre-revolutionary Bolshevism and Kautskyism).

David Edwards
David Edwards

Sorry, meant to say pre-Comintern Bolshevism.

Brandon Campbell
Brandon Campbell

His "direct democracy," for instance, based on ancient-Greek fetishism is a FUCKING JOKE for a proper Marxist.
While he doesn't develop it much in TANS, it could ostensibly be based on sound statistical arguments, which I think is Cock's goal. Also, look at Cuba. They have very unusual restrictions on elections to prevent campaigning and actually make it more democratic in the process. And Cuba is still standing.

Samuel Thompson
Samuel Thompson

Just bumping the thread.

Pic related, requested Classical Econophysics at our national Technical Library, and they fulfilled the request.

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Ian Powell
Ian Powell

Good find. I was thinking about requesting it at the local library, though i doubt they would due to the price. Would Really like to get ahold of a hard copy though.

Easton Reed
Easton Reed

Nice, I gotta start doing this.

Daniel Davis
Daniel Davis

Does Cockshott's work constitute a justified return to Utopianism? Perhaps Scientific socialism relies dialectically on Utopian socialism.

Like, Utopian socialism first imagines a manifold of different socialist social orders until it becomes immediately obvious what "socialism" entrails. Then Scientific socialism comes along to state that the precise nature of this order isn't important, and that we must instead focus on the real historical principles that will create socialism. BUT scientific socialism, in its pursuit of an adequate understanding of the real socialist movement, has now erased the basis provided by Utopianism. What used to be obvious is now impossible to see. We no longer know what socialism is supposed to look like, and the pictures provided in the past seem impossibly naive.

Cockshott creates a new Utopian notion of socialism, incorporating the accumulated knowledge within Scientific socialism. The old Utopian concept of socialism is gone, so we must construct a space of possibilities based on the practical needs of a really-existing economy. Cockshott has given a first indication of where this space is located.

Christian Diaz
Christian Diaz

What on Earth are you talking about. The only utopian thing are his politics. His economics is more scientific than any DUDE THE FREE MARKET WILL SORT IT OUT bullturds we have in the West.

Dylan Smith
Dylan Smith

Aka When you read too much continental philosophy.
Lol, this is a nuclear hot take. Not only is it a unreading of Cockshott, but also of Marx, Engels, Lenin and various other socialists. I'll quote Engels," From the moment when society enters into possession of the means of production and uses them in direct association for production, the labour of each individual, however varied its specifically useful character may be, becomes at the start and directly SOCIAL LABOUR. The quantity of social labour contained in a product need not then be established in a roundabout way (ex: like the Soviet Ruble); daily experience shows in a direct way how much of it is required on the average. Society can SIMPLY CALCULATE HOW MANY HOURS OF LABOUR are contained in a steam-engine, a bushel of wheat of the last harvest, or a hundred square yards of cloth of a certain quality. It could therefore never occur to it still to express the quantities of labour put into the products, quantities which it will then know directly and in their absolute amounts, in a third product (common equivalent), in a measure which, besides, is only relative, fluctuating, inadequate, though formerly unavoidable for lack of a better, rather than EXPRESS THEM IN THEIR NATURAL, ADEQUATE and ABSOLUTE MEASURE - TIME… society will not assign values to products… stating that they have the VALUE of a thousand hours of labour. It is true that even then it will still be necessary for society to know how much labour each article of consumption requires for its production. It will have to arrange its plan of PRODUCTION IN ACCORDANCE WITH ITS MEANS OF PRODUCTION, which include, in particular, its LABOUR POWER. The useful effects of the various articles of consumption, compared with one another and with the quantities of labour required for their production, will IN THE END DETERMINE THE PLAN."

Now here's Marx," Let us finally imagine, for a change, an association of free men, working with the means of production held in common, and expending their many different forms of labour-power in full self-awareness as on SINGLE SOCIAL LABOUR FORCE… Labour-time would in that case play a double part. Its APPORTIONMENT IN ACCORDANCE WITH A DEFINITE SOCIAL PLAN maintains the correct proportion between the different functions of labour and the various needs of the associations. On the other hand, LABOUR-TIME ALSO SERVES AS A MEASURE OF THE PART TAKEN BY EACH INDIVIDUAL IN THE COMMON LABOUR, and of his share in the part of the TOTAL PRODUCT DESTINED FOR INDIVIDUAL CONSUMPTION."

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Caleb Morgan
Caleb Morgan

Also, could you state in detail, your main objections against Cockshott's politics? It is actually well constructed and isn't just merely Greek fetishism.

Justin Sullivan
Justin Sullivan

But does he stands for revolution? Or is he a democratic socialist or something?

Matthew Rogers
Matthew Rogers

Venezuelan here. I'm looking for this book in particular, anybody has it? I would really appreciate it.

marxismocritico.com/2017/10/17/ciber-comunismo-planificacion-economica-computadoras-y-democracia/

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Adrian Sullivan
Adrian Sullivan

La verdad que no, pero si tengo TANS traducido por si te interesa.

Jonathan White
Jonathan White

Gracias, estoy leyendo, increíble que esto se haya escrito recientemente caída la Unión Soviética. Habría que ver que dirá Cockshott respecto a las computadoras de hoy en día, ya que hablaba de modelos bastante "lentos" respecto a los de hoy en día. Respecto a la traducción de libro en español errrhm tuve que bajarlo en inglés también para el asunto de la gráficas.

Asher James
Asher James

Respecto a la traducción de libro en español errrhm tuve que bajarlo en inglés también para el asunto de la gráficas.
Gráficas? Yo no tuve ningún problema viendo las tablas en la traducción, capaz es tu visor de PDF? O te referis a otra cosa? De todas formas, me alegro que te haya servido. Es muy importante que más gente lea a Cockshott, especialmente en Latinoamérica.

Juan Butler
Juan Butler

Mira

insertar figura 1.1 pág. 15

Aiden Gomez
Aiden Gomez

forgot image

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Benjamin Ward
Benjamin Ward

Ah sí, tenes razón, por alguna razón pensaba que las figuras estaban incluidas pero solo las tablas y algunos gráficos, otros efectivamente tenés que verlos con el PDF original. Lástima.

Ian Johnson
Ian Johnson

zigforums.com/thread/2793018/right-politics

Lots of talk labor vouchers in that thread. Ignore the Muh Cash Is Better fags.

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