worse than they want you to think – a marxist analysis of the economic crisis

A talk by Andrew Kliman, author of ‘Reclaiming Marx’s Capital’*

update: click here for sound file

In the past few weeks, since we announced this talk, recognition has increased substantially that the United States, and now the world, are caught up in the most serious financial crisis since the Great Depression.  Because Marxists are famous for “predicting five out of the last three recessions”, I need to point that the term crisis does not mean collapse, nor does it mean slump (recession, depression, downturn).  While the US is probably in the midst of a recession, the downturn has been-thus far-a relatively mild one. For instance, payroll employment has fallen nine months in a row, but the total decline, 760,000, is well less than half of the decline that occurred during the first nine months of the last recession, in 2001, which itself was relatively mild.   Continue reading “worse than they want you to think – a marxist analysis of the economic crisis”

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‘march on the city’

by Jack Staunton

A demonstration has been called for 4pm on Friday 10th October at the Bank of England (Threadneedle St, London EC2, Bank tube) with the slogan “We won’t bail out the bankers”.

Chris Bambery writes in Socialist Worker that “we need to take to the streets to demand, “No bail out for the bankers – we will not pay for their crisis!” From small acts of resistance we can craft a political force that can knock back those running this destructive system.”

Of course, working-class action amidst the financial crisis should not be some instrument for building a party, but rather action which actually helps us weather the storm of the economic situation. While demonstrations mocking bankers like Friday’s may seem attractive, the most pressing matter is not to make shallow propaganda arguing ‘look: capitalism is crumbling’ as if power is about to fall into our lap, but rather for the workers’ movement to organise to defend ourselves from the worst concrete effects of the current economic climate (which is not limited to side-effects of the financial slump). Unemployment and underemployment, casual work with no stability (as experienced by many of the UK’s 750,000 call centre workers) and huge increases in utilities bills are all set to become even more aggravated.

We have produced a leaflet ‘the cost of living: it’s time to act’ about reshaping the workers’ movement for modern realities – the text is below. Continue reading “‘march on the city’”