FROM TIME to time a seemingly minor event illuminates the nature of governance in a country. Such a moment occurred last month when the CEO of Apple, Tim Cook, was honoured in Dublin. There may have been a degree of electioneering on Varadkar’s part when he presented the IDA’s inaugural “special recognition award” to Cook. Nevertheless he echoed a long-held view among Ireland’s ruling business class.
Turning a blind eye
Here is an old adage that if something appears too good to be true, it probably is. Moreover, responsibility goes both ways. Anyone buying something below its obvious market value without checking the origin has to know there is a real probability of illegality or outright criminality being involved.
The common perception is that such shady deals are done by petty crooks working from dark alleyways.
The capitalist illusion Part 5 There is an alternative: socialism
The most important task of our class is to shatter the illusion that socialism failed. Socialism, directed by communist and workers’ parties— contrary to what we are all taught and told to believe—did in fact succeed. It worked, and continues to work, very well.
The capitalist illusion – Part 4 – The ultimate deception
HARRY HOUDINI, probably the world’s most famous illusionist, when performing his acts would mesmerise his audience with feats that defied all logic or reason. He would make the impossible possible. Audiences would be left speechless at his escape routines, and he toured the world displaying his death-defying acts.
More than social democracy is needed
With a new Tory prime minister committed to a Brexit deal that is unlikely to win support in the House of Commons, the odds are heavily in favour of a general election that by any normal calculation would be won by the Labour Party—not just any Labour Party but one led by a left-wing social democrat.
Pensions: The attacks continue
Regina Doherty’s latest proposals are designed to further undermine the state retirement system as it now stands. In effect the minister, and the bourgeois commentators, regard anything with the word “state” as being tainted and bad.
The face of monopoly capitalism
Amazon is Europe’s largest internet retailer, with a turnover twice that of its twenty largest competitors. In 2017 its chief executive earned $2.16 million per hour, while Amazon workers receive the statutory minimum wage, which in the EU varies between €1.42 and €11.27 per hour. In 2018 the company generated […]
Clothing and super-exploitation
At the end of May 2019 a study published by the Stern Center for Business and Human Rights at New York University drew attention to the demeaning conditions in the global clothing industry. The report shows how monopoly capitalism (imperialism) exploits countries, both large and small, that try to develop […]
Identity and class
There is no truly universal experience of the world. It is deeply influenced by how we have been taught to orient ourselves in that world, which then predicts how we interact with it. Language is one such example. Monoglot English-speakers break their day down into time slots and scheduled intervals; […]
The capitalist illusion and technological innovation
What happens to labour when the ratio of jobs being created is dwarfed by the number of people entering the labour force? The futurists look to an existence where automation and artificial intelligence—as opposed to just machines and robots—in a multitude of disciplines, such as complex medical diagnosis and autonomous […]
The capitalist illusion and the independent state (part 2)
Part 2 ■ Part 1 of this article was published in February. All the wealth created by labour in the production process is appropriated by capital, only appearing in its money form in the exchange process, with a portion of the proceeds then being redistributed back to labour through the […]
The capitalist illusion and the independent state (part 1)
In this series on the Capitalist Illusion I have tried to expose as clearly and plainly as possible the exploitative class nature of the capitalist system at the level of both the individual worker and internationally. The next task is to clearly understand how all this is facilitated within borders, […]
Universal basic income and the end of “democratic capitalism”
In much of the Western world the period immediately following the Second World War saw major changes in the nature of capitalist economic management and planning. In response to the threats of renewed economic depression and of socialism (from both within and without), several of the major capitalist states expanded […]
The growing debt crisis
Global debt is now becoming a major factor in the instability of the system of capitalism. Figures show that in the second quarter of 2018 global debt reached a new record, rising to $260,000 billion. Of this total, 61 per cent—$160 trillion—is private debt of the non-financial sector, while 23 […]
The political power of central banks
The dominant ideological story of central banks is that removing them from the control of governments depoliticised them and made them neutral, “scientific” actors in the economy. The argument goes that, as economics developed into a science, with the primary aim of keeping inflation low, making central banks independent allowed […]
Manipulation and the role of social media
Social media and Google serve three strategic purposes for the US government. Firstly, they allow the United States to conduct espionage; secondly, they facilitate the spread of disinformation; and thirdly, they serve as conduits for the transmission of social contagions.