More on the future of capitalism

I am convinced that we are not on the cusp, nor in the middle of a second industrial revolution. In a piece of unpublished futurology I looked at the Jetson's world & stated that we decided to invent the internet instead. Here's some articles and ideas that explain why, and what might happen next.

  1. In the 50's and 60's the next great thing seemed to be in Space. Much of the science fiction was about space travel and the society. One of these works of fictions, the Jetsons showed the nature of the imagined future world, including the flying cars. In fact, in 1974, the microprocessor was invented and society decided to invent the internet instead of go to Mars.
  2. In an unpublished article on futurology, I said,
  3. While we have some moving walkways, they are hardly ubiquitous and much of what they suggest might come to pass has not. We do not have rocket belts, city wide domes, hovering vehicles, nor flying saucers. Looking at these forecasts provoked me to look at “Blade Runner” and its inspiration, Philip K Dick’s 1968 book, “Do Androids dream of Electric Sheep?”. “Blade Runner” was made in 1982, and set in 2019, Dick wrote the story two decades earlier and set the story in 1992.
  4. David Graeber, a one time teacher at Goldsmiths, now at the LSE, addresses our failure to build this super sci-fi utopia. in this article at the Baffler.
  5. mandel and the end of work, also the end of proletarian class war but the proletariat were not superceded, the work went offshore
  6. toffler and gilder - market led research - moved away from space travel as part of the supply side revolution
  7. US Capitalism had a morbid fear of the Soviet Union, from 1920 - 1960, outperformed in GDP growth, tank production , Sputnik and Vostok, also there was room to dream of cheap energy and cheap food, on the other hand there were also some ecological disasters
  8. he US won the 20th Century Wars to become the locus of Capitalism but it's need for military superiority against the Soviet Union led , first an interest in rocket technology.
  9. They never turned away from the military and gvernment control of R&D, drones not factories, medical & IT surveillance and control - not mentioned the Hollywood opiate of the masses - also debt as an opiate of the masses.
  10. Burocracry has invaded the corporation
  11. At this point all the pieces would seem to be falling neatly into place. By the sixties, conservative political forces were growing skittish about the socially disruptive effects of technological progress, and employers were beginning to worry about the economic impact of mechanization. The fading Soviet threat allowed for a reallocation of resources in directions seen as less challenging to social and economic arrangements, or indeed directions that could support a campaign of reversing the gains of progressive social movements and achieving a decisive victory in what U.S. elites saw as a global class war. The change of priorities was introduced as a withdrawal of big-government projects and a return to the market, but in fact the change shifted government-directed research away from programs like NASA or alternative energy sources and toward military, information, and medical technologies.
  12. but basic research is neglecyed
  13. privatisation and anti-specialisation, it's no longer the capital owner that appropriates value it's the salesperson - my words not his, but his are good. especially in the US university sector, competition not collaboration, and copyright again, the selling and granting process encourages mediocrity and discourages edge cases.
  14. Jonathan Katz, has recently warned students pondering a career in the sciences. Even if you do emerge from the usual decade-long period languishing as someone else’s flunky, he says, you can expect your best ideas to be stymied at every point:

  15. You will spend your time writing proposals rather than doing research. Worse, because your proposals are judged by your competitors, you cannot follow your curiosity, but must spend your effort and talents on anticipating and deflecting criticism rather than on solving the important scientific problems. . . . It is proverbial that original ideas are the kiss of death for a proposal, because they have not yet been proved to work.
  16. In the natural sciences, to the tyranny of managerialism we can add the privatization of research results. As the British economist David Harvie has reminded us, “open source” research is not new. Scholarly research has always been open source, in the sense that scholars share materials and results. There is competition, certainly, but it is “convivial.” This is no longer true of scientists working in the corporate sector,...
  17. Computers are not liberating us from "forms".
  18. Oddballs and contrarians are ignored or supressed.