dinsdag 9 maart 2010

Naomi Klein over Keynes versus Keynes

Naomi Klein over 'vrije markt kapitalisme, democratie, Friedman en Keynes'
I am not arguing that all forms of market systems require large-scale violence. It is eminently possible to have a market-based economy that demands no such brutality or ideological purity. A free market in consumer products can coexist with free public health care, with public schools, with a large segment of the economy - such as a national oil company - held in state hands. It's equally possible to require corporations to pay decent wages, to respect the right of workers to form unions, and for governments to tax and redistribute wealth so that the sharp inequalities that mark the corporatist state are reduced. Markets need not be fundamentalist.

John Maynard Keynes proposed just that kind of mixed, regulated economy after the Great Depression. It was that system of compromises, checks and balances that Friedman's counter-revolution was launched to dismantle in country after country. Seen in that light, Chicago School capitalism has something in common with other fundamentalist ideologies: the signature desire for unattainable purity.

This desire for godlike powers of creation is precisely why free-market ideologues are so drawn to crises and disasters. Non-apocalyptic reality is simply not hospitable to their ambitions. For 35 years, what has animated Friedman's counter-revolution is an attraction to a kind of freedom available only in times of cataclysmic change - when people, with their stubborn habits and insistent demands, are blasted out of the way - moments when democracy seems a practical impossibility. Believers in the shock doctrine are convinced that only a great rupture - a flood, a war, a terrorist attack - can generate the kind of vast, clean canvases they crave. It is in these malleable moments, when we are psychologically unmoored and physically uprooted, that these artists of the real plunge in their hands and begin their work of remaking the world.
Kortom: Friedmanite kapitalisme is slecht en anti-democratisch en Keynes was de gematigde, pragmatische, (sociaal-)democraat.

Keynes over zijn eigen theorie, uit het voorwoord voor de Duitse (!) versie van zijn General Theory.
"The theory of aggregate production, which is the point of the following book, nevertheless can be much easier adapted to the conditions of a totalitarian state, than ... under conditions of free competition and a large degree of laissez-faire.
Juist, ja.

Laten we ook niet vergeten dat het Keynes zijn theorie is, die de intellectuele (of beter: 'ideologische') verantwoording geeft om oorlog te starten (dat creëert welvaart volgens hem), banken te redden (big business moet gered worden), corporatisme (de vrije markt kan dat toch niet, dus de overheid moet bedrijven helpen en sturen) en meer van dat fraais. Maar inderdaad: hij was geen (verre van) laissez-faire voorstander. Grappig hoe we Keynes zijn beleidsregels in ons gezicht krijgen gesmeten als verwijt dat we meer Keynes nodig hebben.

(Ohja; en het is natuurlijk een stropop dat we voorstander zijn om oorlogen te starten om een vrije markt in te voeren, maar dat is evident.)

Geen opmerkingen: