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“The U.S. is on track this year to post the longest stretch of falling food prices in more than 50 years, a streak that is cheering shoppers at the checkout line but putting a financial strain on farmers and grocery stores,” the Wall Street Journal reported last month. “The trend is being fueled by an excess supply of dairy products, meat, grains and other staples…” In fact, the Journal
1 hour 40 min ago
Oxfam reports that 634,000 Britons are worth 20 times as much as the poorest 13 million, making the country one of the most unequal in the developed world. The richest 10 per cent of the UK population own over half of the country's total wealth (54 per cent) with the top one per cent owning nearly a quarter (23 per cent), whilst the poorest 20 per cent share just 0.8 per cent of the
4 hours 41 min ago

The progress of mankind requires the cooperation of men and women. The inevitable outcome will be that the people must take possession collectively of the means of production and distribution. And this is called socialism. In order for the society working people will create to be just and egalitarian, it must embody socialist ideology. The fundamental change we envisage does not preserve capitalism. Our compass for where we are headed should have socialism set as its destination.
Capitalism inevitably produces exploitation and poverty, war, oppression, the poisoning of the environment, and a waste of human and natural resources, none of which can be consistently eliminated without the socialist transformation of society. It is an economic law, proven by the history of production under slavery and feudalism, that when an industrial system becomes a hamper upon the productive potentialities of the ever-improving science and technology, it has outlived its day and is ready to give way to a new economic system. Capitalism, instead of using the existing productive forces to supply the necessities and wants of society, is limiting our productive powers. We find that capitalism does not dare use to their fullest extent the productive forces of our present age. Its very existence depends upon retardation of these forces.
Under capitalism, the production of wealth is carried on for profit. The desire for profits is the motive force which drives the capitalist class to use its capital in the production of wealth. In order to secure profits,the workers must be exploited. Part of the product of their labour must be turned over to the capitalist class in the shape of interest and dividends. Capitalism restricts the production of wealth by keeping millions of workers in unemployment.  If these workers were allowed to use their brains and muscle in the production of wealth we could materially add to the amount produced. But this constraint on production by denying employment is necessary to the continuance of capitalism. The army of unemployed is a weapon in the hands of the master class with which the workers are kept in submission. If there were no unemployed, no strike would be lost. The workers could dictate their own terms to the capitalist and their terms would be that they receive for their labour the equivalent of what they produce. The reserve army of unemployed, however, gives the capitalist power to enforce his terms and continue the exploitation of the workers. The capitalists must, therefore, keep part of the workers in unemployment and deny society the benefit of their productive power.
Capitalism is preventing the complete socialisation of the production of wealth. We can today produce more than we could ever have imagined and produce it with less expenditure of labour-power than we could have ever fathomed. Only through common ownership can society secure for all its members the benefit of the improved method of economic organisation. Once we establish common  ownership of our industries we will throw off the checks of our productive powers and will be able to produce more than enough not only to supply every human being food, clothing, and homes to live in but the opportunity for education and culture which can make life worth living. But mere economic development in itself cannot bring the cooperative commonwealth.
The Socialist Party is primarily concerned with analyzing the capitalist system, pointing out its defects and advocating the replacing of the capitalist system by the common ownership and democratic administration of the means of production and distribution. Socialism is not necessarily advanced in response to or because of economic recessions. These crises may point out the fact that something is wrong, but the suggestion of the remedy and the cure for these ills is quite a different problem.
Capital does not hinge on individual will. The main role of capital is not the degree of personal benefit in consumption and enjoyment at the expense of others. Yes, the capitalist can have that. He can use his money any way he wants—he can spend it all, eat it up, drink it up, or even burn it. But that bundle of money ceases to be capital. The basis for capital is the return of the money to circulation, for reinvestment based on exploitation. Used for one’s own consumption or enjoyment, it is just individual wealth; it is not capital. Capitalists not only do not direct the capital but in fact are themselves directed by and enslaved by capital. Capital spontaneously flows wherever the most profit can be made. There is no society-wide overall planning under capitalism, nor can a capitalist economy as a whole be a planned economy. The interests of the capitalists are individual interests. Under the system of private ownership of the means of production, the capitalists all fight for their own immediate interests, the interests of a particular company or sector. By their very nature, that is their sole consideration. Thus they come into antagonistic conflict with other capitalists, other sectors, and other industries. Under capitalism, there is nothing to prevent anyone with capital from producing identical products as long as the goods can be sold. Conflicts and waste inherently exist because products are duplicated. And there is even a contradiction in artificially creating demand and falsely advertising simply to sell these hyped products. So it is clear the private ownership precludes planning. This is true within each sector as well as for any sector’s relation to other sectors. Capitalists don’t sit down together and plan (except to monopolise pricing and markets, which further destroys the basis for capitalism), and there’s no interest for them to do so. For example, the car manufacturers and transportation industry in general, and the big oil companies and the energy industry as a whole, are obviously interdependent. It would seem in the best interest of the auto and other transportation manufacturers to plan with the big oil and energy companies to keep prices down so that sales of vehicles would increase. But that is not the case. Their lack of cooperation clearly undermines the car industry. Even if a finance capitalist owns both General Motors and Exxon, for example, and has overlapping interests, he still cannot plan and coordinate policies with other capitalists. Why? Because as long as many different oil corporations exist, there is competition among them. As long as there are different domestic and foreign auto manufacturers, some producing more fuel-efficient cars than others, the manufacturers are constantly driven to compete with each other. This adds to the independent momentum which prevents them from coordinating different sectors. For example, if Exxon were to raise the price of gas, but Texaco wanted to lower the price to help the American auto industry, it could not do so. Texaco would not get enough windfall profits to attract investors, or to invest in new oil fields and explorations. Without the profits, they cannot compete. In the long haul, they would be swallowed up by their competitors in the energy field. Texaco capitalists would not be able to diversify as much as their competitors in order to survive in the coming period. Nor could they increase their productivity and lessen their vulnerability by swallowing up smaller companies in the economic crisis. Nor would they be able to concentrate efforts to monopolize other sectors, having reaped windfall profits in one sector (such as gasoline), and force their competitors out of other sectors (such as diesel, plastics, and other petro-products). Even if two companies in two interdependent sectors want to cooperate, they cannot, because of the competition within the sector. This is just one example of why there cannot be a planned economy as a whole under capitalism.
4 hours 41 min ago
Greedy Capitalism Investors chasing high yields are perpetuating unsustainable dividend practices and in some cases damaging businesses' growth prospects, according to Stephen Bailey, manager of the Liontrust Macro Equity Income fund, a prominent fund manage.  Instead of investing during downturns to increase cashflow in the long run, many companies have instead used up cash reserves and
7 hours 41 min ago
The UN just announced that due to drought and famine over 300,000 Somali children are suffering from severe malnutrition. This means that over 100 children are already dying everyday from starvation. Soon the number will reach many hundreds a day, bringing back memories of the most recent Great Horn of Africa drought in 2011-12 when the UN admitted that 250,000, almost entirely children, died
7 hours 41 min ago