Jack Saturday

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Anti-Wage-Slavery, Pro-Freedom Quotation 219

It is almost incredible, until you come to think of it, that a society whose key word is "enterprise," and certainly sounds active, is in fact based on the assumption that human beings are so inert, so averse to activity, that is to expenditure of energy, that every expenditure of energy is considered to be painful-- in the economist's term, a "disutility." This assumption which is a travesty of the human condition is built right into the justifying theory of the market society...

The market society is commonly justified on the grounds that it maximizes utilities, ie, that it is the arrangement by which people can get the satisfactions they want with the least effort. The notion that activity itself is pleasurable as a utility, has sunk almost without a trace under this utilitarian vision of life. This is not surprising since the economists and the liberal theoreticians following them have taken as given the capitalist market society where no one works except for a reward. To see the hollowness of this vision, one need only ask what we shall all do when automation, cybernation and new sources of non-human energy have made the system of working for material rewards quite out of date, and useless. What then shall we do-- except expend our energy in truly human activities: laughing, playing, loving, learning, creating, arranging our lives in ways that give us esthetic and emotional satisfaction.
The Real World Of Democracy


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