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Can Capitalists Afford Recovery? Three Views on Economic Policy in Times of Crisis

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  • Nitzan, Jonathan
  • Bichler, Shimshon

Abstract

Economic, financial and social commentators from all directions and of various persuasions are obsessed with the prospect of recovery. The world remains mired in a deep, prolonged crisis, and the key question seems to be how to get out of it. The purpose of our paper is to ask a very different question that few if any seem concerned with: can capitalists afford recovery in the first place? The article contextualizes and examines this question from the viewpoint of economic policy. The analysis is divided into three parts. The first part deals with the mainstream macroeconomic perspective. This approach claims to have already solved all the theoretical riddles, so the main emphasis here is on the practical question of how to engineer a recovery. The second part deals with the Marxist view. Marxists stress the inherent contradictions of accumulation, so the question for them is the very possibility of sustained growth. The third and final part takes the view of capital as power. Capitalized power hinges not on growth, but on strategic sabotage. So from this viewpoint, the key question is not how capitalists can achieve and sustain a recovery, but whether they can afford it to start with.

Suggested Citation

  • Nitzan, Jonathan & Bichler, Shimshon, 2014. "Can Capitalists Afford Recovery? Three Views on Economic Policy in Times of Crisis," Review of Capital as Power, Capital As Power - Toward a New Cosmology of Capitalism, vol. 1(1), pages 110-155.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:caprev:157913
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    1. Bichler, Shimshon & Nitzan, Jonathan, 2018. "With their Back to the Future: Will Past Earnings Trigger the Next Crisis," EconStor Open Access Articles and Book Chapters, ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics, pages 41-56.
    2. Nitzan, Jonathan & Bichler, Shimshon, 2018. "Can Capitalists Afford Recovery? A 2018 Update," EconStor Preprints 183148, ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics.
    3. Bichler, Shimshon & Nitzan, Jonathan, 2016. "A CasP Model of the Stock Market," EconStor Open Access Articles and Book Chapters, ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics, pages 119-154.
    4. Nitzan, Jonathan & Bichler, Shimshon, 2019. "CasP's 'Differential Accumulation' versus Veblen's 'Differential Advantage' (Revised and Expanded)," Working Papers on Capital as Power 2019/01, Capital As Power - Toward a New Cosmology of Capitalism.
    5. Bichler, Shimshon & Nitzan, Jonathan, 2015. "Still About Oil?," EconStor Open Access Articles and Book Chapters, ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics, pages 49-79.
    6. Bichler, Shimshon & Nitzan, Jonathan, 2017. "Can Capitalists Afford a Trumped Recovery?," EconStor Preprints 157859, ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics.
    7. Bichler, Shimshon & Nitzan, Jonathan, 2017. "Growing through Sabotage: Energizing Hierarchical Power," Working Papers on Capital as Power 2017/02, Capital As Power - Toward a New Cosmology of Capitalism.
    8. Bichler, Shimshon & Nitzan, Jonathan, 2020. "Growing through Sabotage: Energizing Hierarchical Power," Review of Capital as Power, Capital As Power - Toward a New Cosmology of Capitalism, vol. 1(5), pages 1-78.
    9. Bichler, Shimshon & Nitzan, Jonathan, 2019. "Making America Great Again," EconStor Open Access Articles and Book Chapters, ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics, pages 2-12.
    10. Bichler, Shimshon & Nitzan, Jonathan, 2018. "Can Capitalists Afford Recovery? A 2018 Update and a Closer Look," EconStor Preprints 184689, ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics.

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