Wednesday, 31 December 2014

The means or production is now freely available, but now state regulation enslaves us instead.

Production generally requires three intrinsic, physical things 1) Labour(/Skills) and 2) Tools(/Machinery) 3) Raw Material.

To liberate the plebs from slavery Marx banged on about who owned 'the means of production', meaning tools/machinery - but this was at a time when machinery was expensive, exotic and rare.

Nowadays, if you have a viable commercial proposition you can raise the capital to buy the 'means of production' the tools/machines will probably be available off the shelf for next dey delivery... and if not a subcontractor with the equipment will be only too happy to enter into a contract to supply you.

No, the game has changed, what limits plebs is not the machinery, nor the skill and almost certainly not the raw material. What really keeps the plebs enslaved now is *state regulation*.

You can setup your machines and use your labour/skill to process raw material - simple, no private individual can stop you. But will the state allow you to? Are there patent/licencing/tax/duty/inspection/registration requirements that the state will use to stop you? Can you afford the arbitrary taxes the state imposes on you for seeking financial independence? Are you prepared for the state taxes/duty on the energy you use, the state taxes/NI on the price of the labour you use, the states enforcement of artificial 'intelectual property rights', the states restrictions/regulations on you advertising, storing, transporting and selling what you produce?

'Capitalism in a free market' worked - it brought equality to all men in so far as money doesn't care who owns it. If you can 'create' then you can convert you creativity/creations into money that is the same as the money used by everyone else.

However the game has changed - people who oppose such equality, who want an 'unfair advantage' that ensures they stay on top have twisted the playing field so the rules don't do what they are supposed to. And the tool they use to tilt the pitch is state regulation - they create arbitrary, illogical new rules to stifle the equality capitalism produces. Whether it is taxes, licences, regulation, monopoly or laws, the markets are not free they are perverted to ensure the rules designed for free markets (the rules of capitalism) now deliver the plebs, just as enslaved, to the children of the same rich, powerful masters who enslaved their forefathers.

We are no longer enslaved by lack of control over machinery, we are enslaved by lack of control over our political masters.