Chapter 8: Comparing Alternatives in an Era of Emerging Finance Capitalism
It has taken sustained political will and dedicated material state resources for financial capital to secure the benefits it enjoys today. Reaching this point has not been the natural consequence of individual human nature, the outcome of agent-less markets, or simply derived from overarching structures. Individual and collective agents have brought about emerging finance capitalism within a historical-structural context of a system of social reproduction that is increasingly articulated through finance and subject to competitive imperatives. The benefits have fallen disproportionately to financial capital. This is the wrong dream, the wrong ambition. Yet to make a break in these institutionalized social relationships of power economic crisis alone is insufficient. Just as it led to the current era, so too must sustained political will and collective action lead to change. In this chapter we explore the argument that any substantive alternative cannot simply modify the form of capitalism but must institutionalize a radically different and democratized social economy wherein the financial system is subordinated to collective ownership and developmental goals. I develop this argument by way of three concluding sections. Section 8.1 offers a comparative summary of the evolution of relations between the states and banks in Mexico and Turkey, which have shown aspects of universalization around financial imperatives differentiated by the institutional forms, operational strategies, and ownership patterns specific to each country’s historical patterns of accumulation. Section 8.2 looks at the state of mainstream alternatives to the current crisis, wherein innovative thinking is restricted to how to have more capitalism...
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