For a long time, I have been eyeing on reading Srnicek and Williams book Inventing the Future: The postcapitalism and the World Minus Work. All this is due to the fact that not only do I know them good enough to anticipate insightful annotation from both of them but also as a result of their recent political writings which has been of significant importance in the drift to re-evaluate the leftist stratagems towards a consciously optimistic, technology friendly, future-oriented driven and the generally modernist attitude. In this regard, this book is not a disappointment but rather brings about satisfaction.
Essentially, the work comprises of two portions. Within the first chapters, Srnicek and Wiliams have dedicated to the critique the ways of thinking and the existing strategies. They deem the approaches to be injurious to the prospectus of left, and there is the necessity of overcoming it. The other part of the book deals with the advancement of the alternate proposal for the drastic political orientation, bolstered by more pragmatic deliberations of the political frugality and technological transformation.
Even though in that intellect, the volume is multi-layered with an ambitious scope. The book as written by Srnicek and Williams has a right tone regarding the political writings which seek to deal with the abstract problems thereby not relaying a tedious jargon. Although at intervals it seems to be a slightly dry and a bit deficient of the spark that one anticipates of an unswervingly political swathe, it manages to make up for it through the combination of a nimble touch of the vocabulary with an analytical seriousness.At the first few chapters of the book contains the critique of the authors on what is referred to as folk politics. The tendencies among the left of the rejection of scale, power, and universality: prefiguration, retreat into localism, escapism and the refusal to seek power are demonstrated. For the authors, the core to such folk politics is propinquity, full involvement over representation, the aspiration for small over large, localism and horizontalism over the potentials for the scaling and the expressions of that what they deem as the lack of the will to develop the larger strategic vision.
Even though the authors are careful and not claiming that these things are real bad of which they would certainly be overegging the pudding, the authors do argue that the left has been held in thrall by such ways of thinking as common sense to its detriment for too long. As the title of the first chapter of the book indicates, a considerable portion of the blame should be taken as to why the left is not winning.
Countering the common sense of the left is the main purpose of the book Inventing the future. The authors strive to counter folk politics by striving for domination other than the rejection of the power; an acknowledgment of exemplification rather than that of compromise politics. The authors also postulate the concerns with longer terms rather than the immediacy of the time and place, the willingness of thinking about the technology and the work of future regarding the potentials for the positive transformations rather than things that ought to be warded off with the protective battles.
The belief of the authors is that common sense is made and can be changed thus this can be done. The authors principal motivation is the story of the creation of neoliberalism as the common sense of the elite specifically as brought about by Jamie Peck and Philip Mirowski. It is the work of numerous organizations and intellectuals over decades in the margins consciously adapting to the strategy so as to maximize their intellectual influence thereby shifting the Overton window to their favor.
The authors refrain themselves from the suggestion of the Mont Pelerin Society of the left due to the fact of the replication of the roles. The MPS precisely worked well due to its nature as the project of the elites that cannot and ought not to replicate. The authors suggest that individuals need to learn from it due to the certain combination and the sound strategic thinking.
In the contemporary times, the radical political writers of the left have blamed the lefts weaknesses on separatism, localism, nostalgics, greens, primitivists, conspiracy thinkers and horizontalism with the insufficient indebtedness of the aptitudes of modernity. In their alacrity to deplore such trends, many critics spend a little time on demonstrating that the groups are bad and that they have affected the organizations of the left as a whole.
Three arguments are contained in the book of which are; actively, we must encircle the future, we ought to have the intellect of diversity and thus we must perceive the confines of the folk politics. At this point, is when the book begins? Within the book, Jodi Cean is quoted Goldman Sachs does not care if you nurture chickens. At that one decree, it is brought out; the withdrawal to the native.
There is accentuate on resilience, the pre-figurative, and the denunciation of the general and the universal gigantic blind alleyway for the left. Particularly, I have always reviled the word resilience as it is just an extra word denoting giving up, cowering down and the learning of how to counter the upsets from the structure which treats individuals as subhuman. At the face of the neo-liberalism which wins since it refutes the probability of reproducing the society in any other way, we pretend and retreat that we can endure or even flourish from the policies of the particular and at the local. Evidently, we cant, and we require a collective and universal response to the monolithic opponent.
Always, to as politics has been referred to as being local. At a palm of ones hand, we can connect throughout the planet with all persons about everything when the problems, solutions, and issues are ultimately universal. Even if the politics is native that what happens at local stays there. Just again think of the response of Goldman Sachs on the situation. As brought out by the writers, folk politics are temporary, limited and unsatisfactory. The particular matter and the local will come into being only if they permit the global, universal and the national agendas. The eventual goal is being universal as it the connection between two things which matter.
At the second part of the book, the authors bring out and examine the upswing of the novel right. Even though this was done before, it was not done in the perspective of the alternative of the left. The authors show that the newfangled right tenaciously built a collective alternate to the societal market political affairs of the intermediate epochs of the previous century. There is a talk about a programme that has a chance of attaining the general support by Hayek which ought to be a long run effort. In their projects, they take themselves seriously. Foe ten days, the MPS met for their inaugural meeting. Strategy, ideas and the correlation which make things happen do take time. The question remains, when will persons take themselves seriously?
It is utterly necessary to embrace the universal options particularly given that neo-liberalism is inherently expansionary in nature, an alternate to inclusive and expansionary general of some sort can be capable to supersede and combat capitalism on the global scale. Within the book, the authors claim that all this ought to be instituted on the substantial commencement of the freedom through the making of the practice of the best-advanced technologies.
The book cultivates the understanding of contemporaneousness on the third part and disparagingly a replacement of the jobs by the machines which creates a surplus population as referred to by the authors. There is immense job loses as studies indicate not because of the fact of technology but for of the unification of the several wifi, the internet, AI, big data, 3d printing, advanced algorithms and the things of the internet. There is a shift from the essentially mechanical culture to the culture of the digital, networked and connected world.
Alex and Nick sparkle at this point as a result of their plea that we cuddle such a future reasonably than the other rearguard action which regulates the fortification of dismal, tedious, meaningless employments, arduous that the changing of the human labor ought to be ardently accelerated as the left political project. There is no reason to fight if about 50-80% of the jobs can be automated but instead, we ought to accelerate the uptake of technology through the government where it can effectually work and substitute bullshit occupations for better lives.
There is an argument by Marianna Mazzucato that the communal investment in the technology brings about big leaps onward and not the private innovation. Automating the work, decarbonizing the economy and expanding economic renewable energy being the policy positions that invent not only for the future but for the social blocs which demand that such materialize. Advanced ways and digitized information are indeed so complex making it difficult to imagine as the structures of planning which could outstrip markets regarding effective resource allocation.
All this compass view fits in a good society which is more than hamsters. We ought to live a life that is full of innovation and creativity and not the dull jobs until the age of 75. It is time to better the ways of living through reading, playing, love, care, and even daydream. At the moment, there is shelter, food, and warmth and this is where the incomes of the basic citizens come in through the unreserved payment to all adequate to sentient on.
Consequently, there is a proposal by the comrades of which is referred to as non-reformist reforms. All this revolve around the basic income and the struggle of the working class to reduce the working hours. It is an accepted idea, and as the authors point out, the primary concern is about the labor unions strategy and organization. Certainly important even so, is the place to back the agenda on. In such context, Srnicek and Williams introduce the topic of the surplus population that is outside the wage labor increasingly confined to the vast slums. Srnicek and Williams however in regards to the surplus population see no reason to abandon the existing ideas about the left although they express the dire need for pluralistic experimentation.
In the radical left, the universal basic income has opponents and proponents. In between, much wary of what seems to be the radical change in which the effects are difficult to foresee and that are supported not only by the sections on the left but also by the various libertarian figures.
Fortunately, Srnicek and Williams demonstrate as being much aware on the ways in which the proposal might be used as the Trojan horse of the right thereby making it explicitly that they will object to any UBI proposal which acts solely as the substitute for the wellbeing state as it exists. The idea needs more substantial and extensive elaboration than that which they can give on the situation and perhaps the collection of the left discussions regarding the political economy about the basic income. The main objective even though clear is devising to free us for the profanity of having to work to earn the living.
The author proposes populist politics that seeks to form a cross-class alliance thereby seeking hegemony based on the post work agenda. Certainly, they have the right agenda in mind as it could channel and unite the aims and interests of the greater number of sub-groups and varied classes within them as it has the advantage of being not elite in nature as the old fashioned ideas regarding the idealized salaried class agent were.
The nation of the popular front, on the other hand, is nothing new as it does not prov...
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