Uncontrolled outbursts and intemperate remarks by an angry untenured law professor.

Wednesday, February 04, 2004

Fellow Servants and the Interests of Capitalism
Freespace's Sandefur writes:And why did Field dissent? According to White, "Field found the latter line of decisions 'most in accordance with justice and humanity.'"

Wrong! As is now well-established, the fellow-servant rule was not in the interests of the capitalist class. The fellow-servant rule does serve the interests of individual capitalists in individual cases, but in the long run it both degraded the capacities of the labor force and created legitimation problems--a point that even my first year torts students are able to come up with in class discussion. If Justice Field was so concerned about "justice and humanity," why does he side with his capitalist masters in case after case!
Why Not the Ultra Minimal State
Yglesias writesMissed by a mile. Despite the fascination of libertarians with Nozick, his theory is utterly useless as tool for global capitalism. The point of the modern state is to serve its capitalist masters & the ultra-minimal state would simply not be a powerful enough servant. Arguments for capitalism are rampant in the public square, even though the consequences of capitalism are "bad" "for society as a whole," but if Yglesias arguments were correct, arguments for capitalism would disappear. Not!
Why Firms Move Abroad
Idiotblogger Larry Kramer has a detailed series of questions for capitalist John Kerry about why global capitalism continues to colonize the third world. Can Kramer possibly be serious? Does he really believe that Kerry has any intention of restricting the rapaciousness of global capitalism? Could Kramer have any doubts about global capitalism's motives for subjugating cheap labor in the third world? Does Kramer think Kerry will answer his questions? Inquiring minds want to know.

Tuesday, February 03, 2004

MacLeod on Lenin's Theory of Imperialism and the War
For a breath of fresh air, read this!
No Bullshit Marxism = Bullshit Non-Marxism
Once again, the blogospheric left makes me want to puke. Henry Farrell at Crooked Timber takes up Volokh the Younger's invitation to debase Marxist analysis by cramming it into the straightjacket of neoclassical rational choice theory:With friends like Jon Elster, Marxism doesn't need enemies! If the methodological assumptions of neoclassical economics were valid, then class-based analysis would be beside the point. What neither Elster nor Farrell gets is that "rational choice" by the individuals (of methodological individualism) is the intellectual equivalent of a soothing bed-time story for frightened children. There was a time in the 1980s when everyone was excited by so-called "rational choice Marxism" or "no bullshit Marxism" as it was called by the insiders. Twenty years on, it is pretty clear that "no bullshit Marxism" was really "bullshit Non-Marxism."

On a more hopeful note, Volokh the Younger actually appears to be intellectually curious about real Marxism. Perhaps, he might consider the possibility that the blogosphere isn't the place to begin a Marxist reeducation. Sasha, how about Das Kapital?
Stephen Reinhardt
Former labor lawyer and now Ninth Circuit Judge Stephen Reinhardt has been interviewed by Howard Bashman:Bullshit! There is not a single judge on the federal bench who isn't willing to be dishonest if that is necessary to serve the interests of the capitalist class. Some judges, like Reinhardt, are dishonest in the service of capitalism with a "gentle mask," and others, like Kozinski, are dishonest in the service of greed unbound. The whole point of the judiciary in a capitalist society is to mask relations of power in the thin veneer of the rule of law. By the way, did you notice that Reinhardt said that neither the left not the right should "accuse the other" "of being dishonest." Reinhardt DID NOT SAY that neither side WAS DISHONEST--just that no one should expose the SHAM!
Nathan Hale Society
Dupes and running dogs will surely want to attend the meetings of the Nathan Hale Society--what could be more fun that figuring out what national security policy best serves the interests of the capitalist class?
Sickening Apology for Billionaires
Aren't you glad that there is a law professor who will take even the most morally degenerate positions imaginable? You can find the embarassing drivel here.
Balkin Gets It Right
Dialectically sophisticated Jack Balkin has a post on Bush's budget that ends with the right punch line: "President Bush he appears to stand for budgetary restraint and for making tough decisions about government expenditures when in reality he is running enormous deficits and lining the pockets of his wealthiest supporters." And what class do Bush's wealthiest supporters come from?

Monday, February 02, 2004

The Dead End of Ideology Critique
The master defender of capitalism of our age was John Rawls. Rawls convinced everyone, on the left and the right, that the defining issue of political philosophy is "the justice of the basic structure." Hence, just basic structure = soul crushing inequality is legitimate. One of the reasons that I admire Jerry Cohen (despite the bizarre Christian twist to his recent work) is that he doesn't buy into this crap. It is therefore especially disheartening, even tragic, when those who purport to represent the left continue to pursue the dead end of ideology critique. An extreme form of this pathology can be found in a recent exchange on the Leiter Reports. Ben Hellie from Cornell writes:As if exposing injustice could somehow magically transform the economic base. Hellie's exchange with the overt defenders of capitalism is yet another example of artificial negativity. Don't go there!
Pathetic Capitalist Foolishness
You can get here. And seriously, does Arnold Williams really think that multi-billion dollar media conglomorates pose any serious threat to capitalism?
State Capitalism Is Not Marxism
I cannot help but feel sorry for harm at ne quid nemis, who comments that proculian mediations are "the exact same stock of meaningless pablum we were constantly bombarded with in pre-Decembrian Romania." But of course, Romania was not even close to a Marxist society. Whether you call it "state capitalism" or a return to the "asiatic mode of production" or perhaps just fascism with a Stalinist twist, it is pretty obvious that Marxism had nothing to do with Romania.
Insta Opiate of the Masses
If you want the cyber equivalent of the old-time religion, you can find it here.
Volokh the Elder's post suggests that this blog is "great parody" that doesnt have "as many" exclamation points Volokh would "have expected." Volokh the Younger says, "I have heard stuff just as bad coming out of very strident libertarians." Here's the sad part, the state of politics in the capitalist (so-called) democracies is now so degraded that anyone who points to the fundamental importance of class struggle can be dismissed as a joke or as the intellectual equivalent of a single-celled organism (aka "strident libertarian").

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