PRO-TIP: Communists don’t care about how communist production will be organized
One of my mutual follows on twitter tweeted this today:
“asking questions like ‘how will communism actually work’ will be classed as unnecessarily pedantic within 6 months”
Let us all hope this prediction comes true.
I say this because the question itself is incoherent. Its persistence can be explained by the fact that too many radicals do not realize capitalism has already answered this question.
To understand my point, consider that no radical ever asks, “How does Walmart or Amazon actually work.” It’s obvious that these huge capitalistic firms manage huge supply chains. They bring the most diverse products together with customers without any of the fuss or bother that is said to be an obstacle in a planned economy.
The only objection to this cold fact is to assert that Walmart and Amazon do this rather amazing feat without planning their activities. We know in fact that this is not true. Production and distribution of commodities is not an art, but a hard science. These massive capitals know, almost down to a single screw, where every commodity is in their logistic chains and can tell you when and where it will finally arrive on a store shelf or your doorstep.
Place an order with Amazon and you can follow your purchase from reception to delivery on your smartphone. Communism doesn’t invent this modern marvel and to ask how communism works in this regards is indeed to concern oneself with trivialities.
There is a deeper question here, however.
Some people think communism has to reinvent the wheel when it comes to the organization of production, but nothing could be further from the truth. Communism is essentially economic and, insofar as it is economic, it is created directly by capitalist accumulation and nothing more. The communistic organization of production is not itself created by communism, but capitalism.
The very idea that this marvelous instrument of social production has to be reinvented by communism is a misapprehension of communism that results from the rather primitive backward economic conditions of Russia or China.
It is entirely true that before actually reaching communism, Russia and China had to first create the material foundations for communism, but this fact has now entered into the conception of communism as some necessary preliminary stage of history. It is not. Unlike Russia in 1917 or China in 1949 there are no peasants in the United States. The idea that we have to create the material foundations of full communism prior to realizing communism is completely mistaken.
People today are seriously talking about the imminent complete replacement of living labor in production with AI. China already has factories where living labor has been almost entirely replaced by robotic processes. And the US has been boasting of “lights-out” manufacturing, where there is little or no human intervention in the production process at least since 2003.
Living labor in production is already obsolete and continues only on the basis of the most egregious reduction of wages to unimaginable levels of poverty. The worker can only compete with the machine if she can survive, as the machine does, without food, clothing or shelter. Even if the worker could live on air alone, she could not compete with a machine.
To put this in the most brutal accelerationist terms: A meatbag cannot compete with artificial intelligence.
Communism has no purpose if the creation of modern industry were at issue. Communism has another purpose entirely: As Marx and Engels put it: “The reality, which communism is creating, is precisely the true basis for rendering it impossible that anything should exist independently of individuals”.
We communist don’t give a fuck about factories or machines or production or distribution or any of that productivist bullshit. We only care that these things should not exist independent of the individuals.
People. That is all we fucking care about. People!
If a radical comes to you asking how production will be organized under communism, pop that motherfucker in the face, he is the enemy. No communist should ever give a fuck about how production is organized. If anyone is concerned about how to organize production, they can go to business school.
We don’t care how the future society will produce widgets; we only care how to end work itself — wage slavery.