Sunday, April 22, 2012

Celebrate Earth Day: Fight for socialism

Karl Marx over 100 years ago wrote of the destructive relationship between capitalist production and the environment:

“Capitalist production…disturbs the circulation of matter between man and the soil, i.e., prevents the return to the soil of its elements consumed by man in the form of food and clothing; it therefore violates the conditions necessary to lasting fertility of the soil….the social combination and organization of the  labor-processes is turned into an organized mode of crushing out the workman’s individual vitality, freedom, and independence. Moreover, all progress in capitalistic agriculture is a progress in the art, not only of robbing the laborer, but of robbing the soil; all progress in increasing the fertility of the soil for a given time, is a progress towards ruining the lasting sources of that fertility. The more a country starts its development on the foundation of modern industry, like the United States, for example, the more rapid is this process of destruction.  Capitalist production, therefore, develops technology, and the combining together of various processes into a social whole, only by sapping the original sources of all wealth — the soil and the laborer. 

From Capital Volume 1 Chap X1V section 10 “Modern Industry and Agriculture. Quoted in Ecology and Socialism by Chris Williams. 

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