Home > political-economy, shorter work time, Uncategorized > The obscenity of economists…

The obscenity of economists…

Posted to the blog, angrybear.blogspot.com, a debate among economists over whether you can be compelled to work harder and longer if government increases its burden on you. Or, whether you can be convinced to work harder and longer by reducing your taxes:

How hard are you willing to work to keep that Bass Boat and the Lake Cabin even as the taxes on them are “killing you”? Are you really going to cut back your overtime in response to a tax increase if it means giving up your Season Ski Pass?”

Our response to the debate was short and sweet:

This is truly an astonishing statement.

The idea that people can be led to work themselves harder in order to offset the burden of government – which, I suppose, can be extended to inflation as well – reveals the depth of cruelty inherent in mainstream economic policy.

It really does not matter whether tax cuts or tax increases will make people work more, it is just horrifying economists would be debating how government might get them to work harder – even as 9.4 million are collecting unemployment.

This is just incredible!!

Shame on you.

To which we felt it necessary to add this addendum:

AM I THE ONLY ONE WHO THINKS IT IS NOT THE ROLE OF GOVERNMENT TO CONVERT SOCIETY INTO A PRISON HOUSE OF LABOR – NO MATTER THAT THIS GOAL IS ACHIEVED BY REDUCING TAXES OR INCREASING THEM???????

THIS DEBATE IS AN OBSCENITY!

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  1. Juan
    July 10, 2009 at 11:29 pm

    Charley,

    the debate over there is among people who don’t see neoclassical economics to be ideology and an ideology which, by focusing on exchange relations and consumption, denies the capital system’s dependence on the exploitation of labor.

    if they’re debating how government might force a higher rate of exploitation through greater work intensity, i doubt they are particularly conscious of doing so but are more caught up in partisan considerations.

    • charley2u
      July 13, 2009 at 10:36 am

      Juan,

      I think you are right on this. What they haven’t considered is how “government might force a higher rate of exploitation through greater work intensity.”: Namely that government must expand the waste of labor time in society, to assure capital a market for the goods it produces.

      This is the entire key to the inflation we have experienced for more than 70 years since the great depression – that a too long work week to maximize the production of surplus value, requires the wholesale waste of human productive capacity in the form of economic activity which produces nothing. If GM is to sell cars, customers must be turned into daily commuters to jobs which create no new value.

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