Re: [OPE] The state under capitalism

From: Dave Zachariah <>
Date: Fri Aug 13 2010 - 18:01:46 EDT

On 2010-08-13 08:38, howard engelskirchen wrote:
> Without doubt, Dave, forms of taxation are necessary to support the
> separation of the state from civil society. But surely we first need to
> give an account of the structures of coercion that make taxation possible.
> Anyway, I agree with you that we need to distinguish structural accounts
> from explanations limited to class or personal interest. Interests have to
> be explained in terms of the structures that generate them and which they
> tend to reproduce. If I produce independently a use value useless to me,
> then it is in my interest to find a market and I take consciousness of this.

I agree with your latter point and I think for instance Robert Brenner's
work on the origins of capitalist relations of production is a very good
example of how to find such structural constraints that give rise to a
certain dynamic.

On your first point I obviously agree too, but see somewhat less
relevance since in historical terms coercive apparatuses were often in
place as states pre-date capitalism. What is interesting is how their
mode of operation, and capacities to levy taxes, changed with the rise
of a capitalist economy.

//Dave Z
ope mailing list
Received on Fri Aug 13 18:04:07 2010

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.8 : Tue Aug 31 2010 - 00:00:02 EDT