imc indymedia

Los Angeles Indymedia : Activist News

white themeblack themered themetheme help
About Us Contact Us Calendar Publish RSS
latest news
best of news




A-Infos Radio

Indymedia On Air

Dope-X-Resistance-LA List


IMC Network:

Original Cities africa: ambazonia canarias estrecho / madiaq kenya nigeria south africa canada: hamilton london, ontario maritimes montreal ontario ottawa quebec thunder bay vancouver victoria windsor winnipeg east asia: burma jakarta japan korea manila qc europe: abruzzo alacant andorra antwerpen armenia athens austria barcelona belarus belgium belgrade bristol brussels bulgaria calabria croatia cyprus emilia-romagna estrecho / madiaq euskal herria galiza germany grenoble hungary ireland istanbul italy la plana liege liguria lille linksunten lombardia london madrid malta marseille nantes napoli netherlands nice northern england norway oost-vlaanderen paris/Île-de-france patras piemonte poland portugal roma romania russia saint-petersburg scotland sverige switzerland thessaloniki torun toscana toulouse ukraine united kingdom valencia latin america: argentina bolivia chiapas chile chile sur cmi brasil colombia ecuador mexico peru puerto rico qollasuyu rosario santiago tijuana uruguay valparaiso venezuela venezuela oceania: adelaide aotearoa brisbane burma darwin jakarta manila melbourne perth qc sydney south asia: india mumbai united states: arizona arkansas asheville atlanta austin baltimore big muddy binghamton boston buffalo charlottesville chicago cleveland colorado columbus dc hawaii houston hudson mohawk kansas city la madison maine miami michigan milwaukee minneapolis/st. paul new hampshire new jersey new mexico new orleans north carolina north texas nyc oklahoma philadelphia pittsburgh portland richmond rochester rogue valley saint louis san diego san francisco san francisco bay area santa barbara santa cruz, ca sarasota seattle tampa bay tennessee urbana-champaign vermont western mass worcester west asia: armenia beirut israel palestine process: fbi/legal updates mailing lists process & imc docs tech volunteer projects: print radio satellite tv video regions: oceania united states topics: biotech

Surviving Cities africa: canada: quebec east asia: japan europe: athens barcelona belgium bristol brussels cyprus germany grenoble ireland istanbul lille linksunten nantes netherlands norway portugal united kingdom latin america: argentina cmi brasil rosario oceania: aotearoa united states: austin big muddy binghamton boston chicago columbus la michigan nyc portland rochester saint louis san diego san francisco bay area santa cruz, ca tennessee urbana-champaign worcester west asia: palestine process: fbi/legal updates process & imc docs projects: radio satellite tv
printable version - js reader version - view hidden posts - tags and related articles

Finance Capitalism Devalues Labor

by Friedhelm Hengsbach Wednesday, Mar. 03, 2010 at 3:18 PM

Businesses are capital investments in the hands of shareholders. Consequently managers only serve the interests of shareholders.


By Friedhelm Hengsbach

[This article published on: SZ-online/Sachsische Zeitung, January 29, 2010 is translated from the German on the Internet,]

The current financial- and economic crisis is unparalleled. Firstly, it is bound with a radical change of dominant thought patterns. The market-radical economic-liberal slogans, trust the self-healing powers of the market and the sleek state as the best of all possible states, vanished overnight from the minds and hearts of the economic elite. Secondly, three dimensions of the crisis are obvious: the monetary, ecological and social dimensions. Finance capitalism produces enormous ecological and social damage.

The attractiveness of Anglo-American finance capitalism causes the transformation of “Rhine capitalism,” so-called “Germany Inc.” The historical compromise between labor and capital was cancelled, employees evaded collective bargaining agreements, the personnel and financial linkage between businesses and their banks was loosened and the solidarity transfer-financed security-systems were deformed.

Finance capitalism leads to devaluing and degrading human labor. The economy is dominated by the capital markets for securities and stocks. These markets are markets under business control. The value of a business is reflected in a purely financial number, the “shareholder value,” the future financial streams referred to the present. Since future payment streams are involved, they are subject to subjective expectations. These can be read in the stock price. Thus managers seek to raise stock prices to evade the danger of a hostile takeover.

Businesses are capital investments in the hands of shareholders. Consequently managers only serve the interests of shareholders. The interests of personnel, dependent employees, customers and public treasuries and the interest in preserving the natural environment play no role or only a secondary role. Financial markets exert pressure on businesses so few taxes, lowest possible wages and the most trifling social- and environmental fees are paid. Labor law should be loosened, the industry-wide collective bargaining agreement made flexible in favor of company-friendly regulations and personnel forced to wage cuts. The institutional investors on the financial markets – big banks, insurance companies and investment funds – have short-term exaggerated profit expectations to which businessmen and women react with quarterly reports. Thus long-term business plans are thwarted and ennoblement and cultivation of work skills, preservation of environmental assets and cultivation of social skills are neglected.

The state has been claimed as a cooperative hostage by the financial elites. The state bows to the pressure of middle class elites by deforming the solidarity transfer-financed security systems coupled to paid work and reducing the security level while simultaneously appealing to private provisions. The state deregulated the labor markets so the number of precarious working conditions grew, a low wage sector arose, poverty wages were paid and the rate of poverty risks rose. Financial elites propagated the global capital markets as the fifth branch in democracy. The owners of capital will signal to national governments more sensitively than the parliamentary elections every four years what “reasonable policy” is, namely keeping unions in check, allowing wages to rise moderately, cutting social benefits, suspending rights of joint-determination and allowing as little redistribution as possible.

The summit conferences of the G20 have ended the hegemony of the US dollar and the episode of the unilateral world regime defined by Wall Street, the US Treasury Department and the IMF and also the hegemony of the club of the powerful and rich countries of the G8. They agreed only on declarations of intent for the new financial architecture. The G20 named the causes of the financial crisis as system errors, not individual misconduct – the existence of outsized financial businesses that can annul competition and shift private risks to the general public. However the rules of a new financial architecture should take effect when the critical phase of the world economy is past.

The national governments open bailout umbrellas to preserve the “distressed” banks from ruin. The Black-Yellow coalition government in Germany passed a growth-acceleration law to animate the domestic demand for goods and services through tax cuts and social benefits. Whether such measures are appropriate is controversial. The experiences of the last decades in different countries speak against attempting to increase revenues of public budgets through tax cuts.

The government is anxious to avoid great breakdowns and uses a toolbox of instruments to systematically repress the question of the goals of political action and what society people want. However their political convictions are clear in its use of the instrument box. The coalition agreement mentions the terms market and competition a hundred times but solidarity and justice only twice.

The promise of a new financial architecture and a real economic revival cannot be faded out in an economic ethics reflection. Most people in Germany live below their means: many vital needs are not satisfied, many public tasks remain unfulfilled while the work capacity of young persons is worn or exhausted. Therefore the key of a way out from the financial- and economic crisis is clear: binding rules guaranteeing greater value creation and more paid work. Ambitious ecological reconstruction of the transportation-, energy and food systems and personal care is job-friendly. Human work capacity must be freed from commodification or commercial exploitation. A just distribution of value creation is possible through an active jobs policy, strengthening free collective bargaining, interpreting labor law in favor of dependent employees, building industrial relations, schemes and joint-entrepreneurial determination and establishing a general citizen security.

Paid work is not the only key of economic connection and social participation. Three forms of work – paid work, private caring work and civil society engagement – should be fairly distributed to both genders, along with labor income, capital income and transfer income. A successful life and social cohesion rest on the restoration of five balances: the balance between public and private budgets, export- and domestic demand, industrial work and personal work, the work of men and women and privacy and paid work. What collective civil society actors will articulate this unrest and anxiety that impels and advances the democratic breakthrough?

Report this post as:

Local News


lausd whistle blower A10 11:58PM

Website Upgrade A10 3:02AM

Help KCET and UCLA identify 60s-70s Chicano images A04 1:02PM

UCLA Luskin: Casting Youth Justice in a Different Light A02 11:58AM

Change Links April 2018 A01 11:27AM

Nuclear Shutdown News March 2018 M31 6:57PM

Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018! M29 7:00PM

Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018! M29 6:38PM

Spring 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert! M19 2:02PM

Anti-Eviction Mapping Project Shows Shocking Eviction Trends in L.A. M16 5:40PM

Steve Mnuchin video at UCLA released M15 12:34AM

Actress and Philanthropist Tanna Frederick Hosts Project Save Our Surf Beach Clean Ups M06 12:10PM

After Being Told He's 'Full of Sh*t' at School Event, Mnuchin Demands UCLA Suppress Video M02 11:44AM

Resolution of the Rent Strike in Boyle Heights M01 6:28PM

What Big Brother Knows About You and What You Can Do About It M01 3:30PM

Step Up As LAPD Chief Charlie Beck Steps Down F14 2:44PM

Our House Grief Support Center Hosts 9th Annual Run For Hope, April 29 F13 12:51PM

Don’t let this LA County Probation Department overhaul proposal sit on the shelf F13 11:04AM

Echo Park Residents Sue LA Over Controversial Development F12 8:51AM

Former Signal Hill police officer pleads guilty in road-rage incident in Irvine F09 10:25PM

Calif. Police Accused of 'Collusion' With Neo-Nazis After Release of Court Documents F09 7:14PM

Center for the Study of Political Graphics exhibit on Police Abuse posters F07 9:50AM

City Agrees to Settle Lawsuit Claiming Pasadena Police Officer Had His Sister Falsely Arre F04 3:17PM

Professor's Study Highlights Health Risks of Urban Oil Drilling F04 12:42PM

Claims paid involving Pasadena Police Department 2014 to present F04 10:52AM

Pasadenans - get your license plate reader records from police F03 11:11PM

LA Times Homicide Report F03 1:57PM

More Local News...

Other/Breaking News

The Market is a Universal Totalitarian Religion A20 7:14AM

Book Available about Hispanics and US Civil War by National Park Service A19 5:52PM

The Shortwave Report 04/20/18 Listen Globally! A19 4:01PM

The Republican 'Prolife' Party Is the Party of War, Execution, and Bear Cub Murder A19 11:48AM

Neurogenèse involutive A18 9:21AM

Paraphysique de la dictature étatique A16 10:13AM

Book Review: "The New Bonapartists" A16 3:45AM

The West Must Take the First Steps to Russia A14 12:25PM

Théorie générale de la révolution ou hommage à feu Mikhaïl Bakounine A14 3:30AM

The Shortwave Report 04/13/18 Listen Globally! A12 3:50PM

“Lost in a Dream” Singing Competition Winner to Be Chosen on April 15 for ,000 Prize! A12 3:48PM

The World Dependent on Central Banks A12 4:43AM

Ohio Governor Race: Dennis Kucinich & Richard Cordray Run Against Mike DeWine A11 9:40PM

March 2018 Honduras Coup Again Update A10 10:52PM

Apologie du zadisme insurrectionnel A10 3:33PM

ICE contract with license plate reader company A10 1:14PM

Palimpseste sisyphéen A09 11:23PM

Black Portraiture(S) IV: The Color of Silence...Cuba No...Cambridge Yes A09 5:32AM

Prohibiting Micro-Second Betting on the Exchanges A09 4:18AM

Prosecutors treat Muslims harsher than non-Muslims for the same crimes A08 10:33PM

Amy Goodman interview on cell phone safety A08 10:29PM

Mesa, Arizona police officer kills unarmed white man A08 9:50PM

Israeli leaders should be prosecuted for war crimes A08 9:48PM

Paraphysique de l'autorité A08 12:11AM

Two Podcasts on fbi corruption A06 10:13PM

Fbi assassins assault & try to kill DAVID ATKINS A06 7:29PM

EPA Head Scott Pruitt: Of Cages And Sirens A06 2:15PM

The Shortwave Report 04/06/18 Listen Globally! A05 4:25PM

More Breaking News...
© 2000-2018 Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by the Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Running sf-active v0.9.4 Disclaimer | Privacy