6 January 2015

The Alternative Economy as a Singularity

. @KevinCarson1. #Singularity. #networks. #economy.

C4SS Research Associate Kevin Carson’s seventh paper — The Alternative Economy as a Singularity. [PDF]
“Localized, small-scale economies are the rats in the dinosaurs’ nests. The informal and household economy operates more efficiently than the capitalist economy… And in the end… we will bury them.”
Originally published at the Center for a Stateless Society on 8 December 2009

Important Quotes

The technological singularity means that labor is ceasing to depend on capital, and on wage employment by capital, for its material support. 
For over two centuries, as Immanuel Wallerstein observed, the system of capitalist production based on wage labor has depended on the ability to externalize many of its reproduction functions on the non-monetized informal and household economies, and on organic social institutions like the family which were outside the cash nexus. 
The rapid growth of technologies for home production, based on small-scale electrically powered machinery and new forms of intensive cultivation, has radically altered the comparative efficiencies of large- and small-scale production. This was pointed out by Borsodi almost eighty years ago, and the trend has continued since. The current explosion in low-cost manufacturing technology promises to shift competitive advantage in the next decade much more than in the entire previous century. 
If the coming singularity will enable the producing classes in the industrialized West to defect from the wage system, in the Third World it may enable them to skip that stage of development altogether. Gupta concluded "The Unplugged" with a hint about how the principle might be applied in the Third World: "We encourage the developing world to Unplug as the ultimate form of Leapfrogging: skip hypercapitalism and anarchocapitalism and democratic socialism entirely and jump directly to Unplugging."

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