Re: Anti-Capitalism

From: Damien Sullivan (
Date: Wed Apr 25 2001 - 16:30:25 MDT

On Sat, Apr 21, 2001 at 10:55:15AM +0200, Anders Sandberg wrote:

> This is especially necessary for liberal (in the american sense of the
> word) transhumanists, as being technology, biotech, nanotech, human
> enhancement etc. is increasingly being called a right-wing project from
> the left. You risk becoming labelled as right just because you like
> progress. The cure would be to construct some valid leftist system

Ken MacLeod has said that the socialism of the Old Left was totally about
progress, and humanistic in the best sense, and not friendly toward
animal-rights ideas. Whatever else one can say about Marxism it is a
_progressive_ theory, from savagery to feudalism to capitalism (Marx and
Engels gave one of the most eloquent praises of capitalism vs. feudalism, far
better than Ayn Rand, I think) to socialism to communism. With technology as
the mediator, at least between feudalism and capitalism. We may think that
socialism is not progress, or even possible, but the intent was definitely

The "Left" isn't. The social-anarchist protagonist of _The Star Fraction_
starts out with a job shooting animal-rights and anti-computer activists.
(A job defending research labs, technically, in a more violent world than

MacLeod also observed that socialists tend not to believe in AI, for no clear
reason; Iain Banks is the big exception. (MacLeod isn't, despite writing four
excellent books with AI as a basic postulate.) Smart computers seem more
popular in capitalist libertaria.

But at any rate, I don't think a "valid leftist system" needs to be
constructed. It's there. It's just that Green "leftists" might be swamping
progressive "leftists."

-xx- Damien X-)

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