Monday, April 13, 2009

An Argument for Bourgeoisie Nationalism: Creating a Strong Economic "Talented Tenth"


The objective of any quest or struggle for liberation is to make a human being have individual dignity and liberty, whether socially, politically and economically.

Such individual dignity would allow citizens of a country or community to exercise their sovereign authority by an express consent of who should govern them. This would be done using an electoral mandate actioned through universal suffrage. 

In Zimbabwe, the government was expected to embark on a well-thought out National Agenda to put in place public policies and programmes meant to economically empower the citizens (either as business owners or workers). There had to be enterprise creation and development of wealth for business owners, and revenue for the government to create, safeguard and expand adequate jobs for workers.

Economic empowerment has been mistaken as redistribution and forcible takeover of existing companies especially owned by persons of European origin.

A conscientious National Agenda entails the creation of a stable and democratic state and the provision of fair opportunities.

The National Agenda is not absolute, it is work in progress. It is a highly contestable terrain through political parties, which presents themselves by way of Election Manifestoes and public policy proposals meant to improve the social and economic or material conditions of citizens so that they live freely.

The form of National Agenda prevalent in most African countries is largely limited i.e. “essentially a counterpoise to white racial domination, more a reaction than an organized and fully articulated political and social vision of the future post-colonial society. It was at best, part of the (European) liberal ideology and, at worst, ideologically vacuous. For African nationalists had as their primary objective- and virtually as an end in itself- the need to inherit (State) power from the colonialists… At no given time, either during the armed struggle itself or in this post-independence period, have radical ideologies been meaningfully translated into a practical agenda for the economic and social transformation of the colonial order… ” – Ibbo Mandaza, ‘Race, Colour and Class in Southern Africa’ (SAPES Books, 1997).

Political power in Africa is largely managerialist and stewardship than agents of innovation and creativity. The local representation makes use of locals as workers and managers.

While beholden to established transnational capital, the ownership, control and accumulation of capital and other means of production was easily disguised using local faces and institutions.

The Economic Weaknesses of African Nationalism

According to Ibbo Mandaza, African nationalism (along with Pan-Africanism and Black Consciousness) developed as a political reaction to the Western racial supremacy ideology by persons of African origin located around the world. It represented and continues to represent a re-assertion and simply a reaction of persons of African origin dignity after centuries of racial and colonial oppression and exploitation at the hands of persons of European origin.

It is a well considered view of this author that this form of African nationalism had originated in the denial to the African professional middle class access and share in the economic, social and political privileges enjoyed by colonialists. It is very narrow, limited and negative.

Mandaza goes on to say that after the African elite class had been nurtured in the Western educational, professional and cultural environment, it became known for its expensive lifestyles and tastes without substance. The African elite class was then relegated to the same economic, socio-cultural and political status of peasants and workers. To the persons of European origin, it did not matter whether one is educated and groomed in the Western world economically, socio-culturally and politically, the world consisted of two antagonistic sides i.e. the ‘civilized’ Caucasian world and the ‘uncivilized/savage’ world of persons of African origin. The persons of African origin brought up or educated in the Western ways was then referred to as a ‘civilized savage’ or 'sophisticated native.'

Therefore, the African ‘middle’ class emerged as a politically bitter class which then mobilized peasants and workers to confront colonialism and racial discrimination to achieve ‘black majority rule’. Organization and mobilization of the peasants and workers used the most visible and deeply-felt exploitative and oppressive racial indignities.

The ‘middle’ class consisted of those people who had access to Western education and a degree of limited financial means, but not necessarily a great deal of social influence or powerful ideas.

Middle class is here defined in the context of a socio-economic class between the working class and the upper class. The middle class are also distinguished from the working class by occupation and education. It is composed of professional, technical (i.e. highly skilled, administrative) and managerial employees. The middle class is characterized by the close relationship between income and education. A high proportion of people who have completed higher education get better paying jobs. Therefore for one in the peasantry and working class to improve the type and level of employment, one has to equally improve the level of education.

"Ruling elites tend to treat their middle-class countrymen with more respect and deference than they would those in the impoverished and uneducated lower classes. From Aristotle down to the present, men have argued that only in a wealthy society in which relatively few citizens lived at the level of real poverty could there be a situation in which the mass of the population intelligently participate in politics and develop the self-restraint necessary to avoid succumbing to the appeals of irresponsible demagogues," - Seymour Martin Lipset, Political Man: The Social Bases of Politics (1963).

Aristotle articulated the contribution of the middle class to a stable democracy (as quoted by Lipset (page vii): “Thus it is manifest that the best political community is formed by citizens of the middle class, and that those states are likely to be well administered, in which the middle class is large . . . ” and where citizens have a “moderate and sufficient property.”

"A constitution based on the middle class is the mean between the extremes of oligarchy (rule by the rich) and democracy (rule by the poor). “That the middle [constitution] is best is evident, for it is the freest from faction: where the middle class is numerous, there least occur factions and divisions among citizens” (IV.11.1296a7–9). The middle constitution is therefore both more stable and more just than oligarchy and democracy." - Aristotle's Political Theory

The middle class is different from the bourgeoisie in that the middle class desires to have material things like, car, cash, house and a credit card and easily satisfied with the present material conditions; whereas a bourgeoisie wishes to own and control the factors or means of production.

The following aspects are often ascribed in modern usage to a "middle class values”:
  1. Achievement of tertiary education;
  2. Physical conditions in which one works - a job is middle class if it is done in clean conditions and does not involve heavy manual work and does not require protective clothing;
  3. Holding professional qualifications (this includes academics, lawyers, engineers and doctors, etc) regardless of their leisure or wealth;
  4. Lifestyle - judged by pointers such as social manners and habits, membership of fraternal or service organizations, circle of friends and acquaintances; and
  5. Consider “bourgeois values” (as will be explained later) as aspirational.
To Aristotle, the middle class is neither exceedingly wealthy nor exceedingly poor and it excels in moderation. Aristotle believed that moderation was the key to a happy life and that moderation most readily enabled one to act upon rational principles. Thus the middle class would be the most rational and give way neither to excesses of conceit nor of humility. The middle class is less likely to envy possessions than the poor and less likely to plot against others than the rich. Aristotle believed that the middle class was more virtuous in every way and thus the state should have a large population of middle class people. (

The African nationalism as crafted by the African middle class derived its strength and popularity among Africans from its cultural and racial assertiveness not values or standards. It was a mere response and reaction to the colonial cultural and racial assault and domination against the persons of African origin by those of European origin.

Just like Marxism, African nationalism had no economic model and structure other than which was to be racially based in favour of persons of African origin. It was a system "of against" and therefore bankrupt and very limited.

The African middle class call for an overthrow of colonialism and racial discrimination presented itself as racial solidarity of persons of African origin against Caucasians simplistically and in a very ordinary sense. The pre-colonial African socio-cultural and political identity was wrongly seen as a static and homogeneous tendency which had been disturbed and disrupted by colonialism and European penetration through forced labour, hut tax, land expropriation, natural resource exploitation, etc.

After attaining political independence, African nationalists were more concerned with a head count – how many Africans were occupying the political and economic positions of power and influence, even it meant them being agents or junior partners of Western established capital. This is the same destructive headcount approach that has influenced ‘indigenous economic empowerment’ (IEE) and highly redistributive economic policies pursued by most African governments, without attending to the economic supply side.

Inspired by highly redistributive tendencies, with little attendance to the expansion of the production processes and the supply side, the African nationalists enjoyed and had the access to the trappings of the socio-cultural, economic and political status, positions and privileges of the former colonizer as parasites or managers. The government’s redistributive tendencies were akin to paternalistic and parental socialism, what in French is called “dirigisme" (State control of economic and social matters). The term comes from Latin dirigere meaning to ‘to direct.’

Paternalism is the policy or practice on the part of people in positions of authority of restricting the freedom and responsibilities of those subordinate to them as if in the subordinates' supposed best interest. This is the attitudes of politicians and bureaucrats to impose their own preferred values on others, whereas parentalism is the willingness to allow the government to take control of their lives, as presented by Nobel Prize–winning economist James McGill Buchanan, Jr. in a published article “Afraid to be Free: Dependency as Desideratum” (Center for Study of Public Choice, 2005). 

Buchanan argues that the conventional threats to freedom from managerial socialism (central planning) and distributionist socialism (the welfare state) are today joined by paternalistic socialism and "parental socialism," which Buchanan describes as the willingness among many people to allow the government to take control of their lives.

Mandaza sums it up when he says that the African nationalists’ reaction to colonialism and racism was not a tendency in class terms. It was a narrow-minded promise of economic prosperity following the unfettered access to political power by persons of African origin, divorced from the complexities of international capital and a global economy. It was deep seated admiration of Western socio-cultural, economic and political structure, systems and privileges as managed, controlled and accessed by persons of African origin.

Defining ‘Bourgeois’

A bourgeois is private property owner with access and control over the means of production, i.e. capital assets, i.e. fixed assets employed as a means of generating new or more income. Capital assets are part of tangible and intangible assets. Tangible assets include cash, equipment, machinery, plant, property. They are anything that has long-term physical existence or is acquired for use in the operation of the business and not for sale to customers. They can also be used as collateral to raise loans and can be more readily sold to raise cash in emergencies. Intangible assets are things of value that cannot be physically touched, such as a brand, franchise, trademark or patent.

As an economic class, the bourgeois comprises people who own and trade in such capital assets. They hire workers to work for them using those means of production.

The bourgeois as a property owner obtains profit from the productive effort of his employees because the value of output exceeds the costs, including those of wages and materials. Profit is the best known measure of the success of an enterprise since it is the surplus remaining after total costs are deducted from total revenue.

Bourgeoisie (‘Biedermeier’ in Germany) is a term originally from the medieval times (1100 to 1453) through the age of the French Revolution (1789–99). It referred to the non-noble inhabitants of towns. As artisans and craftsmen, the bourgeoisie occupied a socio-economic position between the peasants and the landlords/aristocrats.

According to Karl Marx, the bourgeoisie plays a heroic role in history by revolutionizing industry and modernizing society because a market-centered focus and control of commerce and capital made the bourgeoisie a potent rival to the aristocracy in a number of European countries, most notably England and the Netherlands. The German states were also dominated by merchants, craftsmen and financiers.

The bourgeoisie, wherever it has got the upper hand, has put an end to all feudal, patriarchal, idyllic relations…It has resolved personal worth into exchange value, and in place of the numberless indefeasible chartered freedoms, has set up that single, …freedom - Free Trade...It has been the first to show what man’s activity can bring about. It has accomplished wonders far surpassing Egyptian pyramids, Roman aqueducts, and Gothic cathedrals; it has conducted expeditions that put in the shade all former Exoduses of nations and crusades.

“The bourgeoisie cannot exist without constantly revolutionising the instruments of production, and thereby the relations of production, and with them the whole relations of society. Conservation of the old modes of production in unaltered form, was, on the contrary, the first condition of existence for all earlier industrial classes. Constant revolutionising of production, uninterrupted disturbance of all social conditions, everlasting uncertainty and agitation distinguish the bourgeois epoch from all earlier ones. All fixed, fast-frozen relations, with their train of ancient and venerable prejudices and opinions, are swept away, all new-formed ones become antiquated before they can ossify. All that is solid melts into air, all that is holy is profaned, and man is at last compelled to face with sober senses his real conditions of life, and his relations with his kind.

“The need of a constantly expanding market for its products chases the bourgeoisie over the entire surface of the globe. It must nestle everywhere, settle everywhere, and establish connexions everywhere.

“The bourgeoisie has through its exploitation of the world market given a cosmopolitan character to production and consumption in every country. To the great chagrin of Reactionists, it has drawn from under the feet of industry the national ground on which it stood. All old-established national industries have been destroyed or are daily being destroyed. They are dislodged by new industries, whose introduction becomes a life and death question for all civilised nations, by industries that no longer work up indigenous raw material, but raw material drawn from the remotest zones; industries whose products are consumed, not only at home, but in every quarter of the globe. In place of the old wants, satisfied by the production of the country, we find new wants, requiring for their satisfaction the products of distant lands and climes. In place of the old local and national seclusion and self-sufficiency, we have intercourse in every direction, universal inter-dependence of nations. And as in material, so also in intellectual production. The intellectual creations of individual nations become common property. National one-sidedness and narrow-mindedness become more and more impossible, and from the numerous national and local literatures, there arises a world literature.

“The bourgeoisie, by the rapid improvement of all instruments of production, by the immensely facilitated means of communication, draws all, even the most barbarians, nations into civilisation. The cheap prices of commodities are the heavy artillery with which it batters down all Chinese walls, with which it forces the barbarians’ intensely obstinate hatred of foreigners to capitulate. It compels all nations, on pain of extinction, to adopt the bourgeois mode of production; it compels them to introduce what it calls civilisation into their midst, i.e., to become bourgeois themselves. In one word, it creates a world after its own image.

“The bourgeoisie has subjected the country to the rule of the towns. It has created enormous cities, has greatly increased the urban population as compared with the rural, and has thus rescued a considerable part of the population from the idiocy of rural life...

‘The bourgeoisie keeps more and more doing away with the scattered state of the population, of the means of production, and of property. It has agglomerated population, centralised the means of production, and has concentrated property in a few hands. The necessary consequence of this was political centralisation. Independent, or but loosely connected provinces, with separate interests, laws, governments, and systems of taxation, became lumped together into one nation, with one government, one code of laws, one national class-interest, one frontier, and one customs-tariff .” – Karl Marx, Communist Manifesto, Chapter 1 (1848).

It was the rising power of the bourgeoisie that foreshadowed the end to a European political and economic system governed by aristocrats who barred the bourgeoisie from trade because that would have threatened their noble titles.

Historians have used the term "bourgeoisie" to denote the middle group between the nobility/aristocracy and the peasants and workers. The bourgeoisie has been a term that has been used to describe merchants, guild members and elite non-nobles (professionals, lawyers, financiers, and officials) who dominated much of the early modern urban landscape.

Sociologically, “bourgeois values” have the following characteristics:

  1. An emphasis on integrity, honest behaviour and a good reputation.
  2. The inculcation of values and attitudes conducive to economic success and personal responsibility: frugality, enterprise, diligence and attention to detail.
  3. Respect for private property and the rule of law more generally.
  4. Positive validation and understanding of the activities of trade, commerce and business activities.
  5. Prudent stewardship of wealth and thrift more generally.
  6. An enormous interest in the welfare of own children, especially their proper education.
  7. Their women should be chaste, modest and thrifty, while the men should be polite and not prone to disorderly conduct.
  8. The ideal bourgeois father is a good provider for his family because he has the virtues necessary for economic success: rationality or reasonableness, reliability, politeness, respect and fairness.
  9. The ideal bourgeois mother is free from drudgery (hard, menial or dull work) and is willing to be the companion and helpmate to her husband, the supervisor and facilitator of her children's development and education, and the arbiter of taste, culture, and all the finer things in life for the family.
  10. A sense of obligation to redress or alleviate conditions perceived as morally offensive.
The opposite of bourgeoisie is “bohemian”, and this is a term that emerged in the early 19th century. It is used to refer to a group of people of informal and unconventional social habits who often dressed simply, lived in the cheaper parts of town, seemed not to care too much about money and were interested in art and emotion rather than business and material success.

Parasitic and Managerial/Stewardship Bourgeoisie as an Anti-Thesis

If there are no changes to the economic structural set up (ownership, control and management), there will be two forms of undesirable bourgeoisie – i.e. parasitic and managerial/stewardship.

Parasitic Bourgeoisie

· is where acess to public office becomes an instrument or a stepping stone into business ventures or to access government tenders ("tenderprenuership");
· is where there is heavy reliance on the patronage of internationally established capital (both foreignccess to public office and locally represented); or
· is where livelihood is through institutionalized foreign ‘aid’ determined through the domestic political process of the ‘donor’ country .

Literary, a steward is "one who manages another's property, finances, or other affairs; one who is in charge of the household affairs of a large estate, club, hotel, or resort; a ship's officer who is in charge of provisions and dining arrangements; an attendant on a ship or airplane; and an official who supervises or helps to manage an event."

Relatedly, managerial bourgeoisie is a salaried overseer of production and commercial activity, who does NOT own the means of production. He owes his relevance to established capital. He cannot function on his own as a member of the capitalist class. His power and influence is strictly for the duration of his appointment. His is more attached to the trappings of status than to the accumulation of his own capital through productivity and the creation of national iconic and highly competitive commercial brands.

Therefore, a corporate manager is a steward in the metaphorical sense.

Both the parasitic and managerial bourgeoisie class within and among Africans is often co-opted by Western interests within their fraternal organizations and institutions to create and maintain a local facade. This explains why capital of “persons of African origin” (PAO) in countries of the Western world is very uninfluential politically and economically weak in spite of having been exposed to the business or capitalist world for decades. They are is still imbedded in ‘Caucasian capital’ for survival and relevance.

This is in contrast with ‘Jewish capital’ and this has made it possible for Jews to exercise influence in a number of areas, including politics, government, the media, academia, popular culture, public policy, international relations and international finance, despite their numerical level.

Parasitic bourgeoisie makes money out of speculative tendencies rather than productive processes. It benefits from political influence and power, agency fees, fronting and commissions. Parasitic bourgeoisie engages in primitive accumulation of wealthy.  

For the purposes of getting access to State power or pacifying the State’s agitation for economic indigenization, established capital offers or provides shareholding to Africans either freely or through a ‘loans’.

This is not the kind of a national bourgeois required.

According to C.L.R. James, an extremely important thinker, writer and historian of the Caribbean, "the leaders of a revolution are usually those who have been able to profit by the cultural advantages of the system they are attacking,” - The Black Jacobins: Toussaint L'Ouverture and the San Domingo Revolution (1938). During the fight against colonialism, the African so called middle class embraced egalitarian and democratic values in theory. However, once integrated into the power structure their expressed values are contradicted by their embrace of material rewards, social status and positions of power.

Franz Fanon described this form of bourgeoisie which is managerial or stewardship: “The national middle class which takes over power at the end of the colonial regime is an underdeveloped middle class. It has practically no economic power, and in any case it is in no way commensurate with the bourgeoisie of the mother country which it hopes to replace. In its narcissism, the national middle class is easily convinced that it can advantageously replace the middle class of the mother country. But that same independence which literally drives it into a corner will give rise within its ranks to catastrophic reactions, and will oblige it to send out frenzied appeals for help to the former mother country” - The Wretched of the Earth (1961).

Parasitic and managerial bourgeoisie is a more direct threat to the national economic interests because it provides international capital with an indigenous base of support deep inside the nation’s economic infrastructure. A nation-state relying on the support of parasitic and managerial bourgeoisie is very vulnerable and risks being manipulated by established international capital.

Therefore, this meant what was expected was to have domesticated Capital so that it becomes national. It means reforming private capital to create a national bourgeois that identifies with national social and economic programmes and aspirations. We do want to create a national liberation of impoverished peoples.

In an interview ahead of the 2007 ANC's policy conference, South African businessman and then ANC national executive committee (NEC) member Saki Macozoma said “there are two fundamental economic questions to be debated by a policy conference. The first is how to achieve rapid growth and better competitiveness of our economy. The second is how to create jobs and reduce poverty within a reasonable time."

The fact that private capital was a phenomenon of established transnational capital especially of European origin and was therefore friendly to the imperialist and colonial does not mean that we cannot have a national bourgeois friendly to the nationalist Agenda.

“…As it gains in strength, will black business develop its own identity as the core of a national bourgeoisie promoting progressive policies domestically and internationally? The experience of decolonisation in most post-independence African countries is that colonial capital and the colonial state managed to create a comprador neo-colonial class that abandoned the social and economic objectives of the national liberation movement.” - ANC online journal, Umrabulo Number 27, November 2006.

The national bourgeoisie are first and foremost defined by their position as purchasers of labour and have access to means of production. The national bourgeoisie fosters industrial innovation and development.

We need an indigenous financial oligarchy in Africa to which the State seeks financial assistance for public polices and programmes. We require an indigenous corporate social stratum with strong sense of economic, political and cultural judgement to which the State can look up to for the said financial assistance. We expect an indigenous financial sector and the moguls spearheading the creation and funding of ideas.

The image of the businessman ‘profiteering' carries the implication of influence and power actively used for personal anti-social gain. If the ‘Labour Theory of Value’ defines value as determined by the available supply of commodities and the corresponding demand for them, profiteering means making excessive profits on goods in short supply.

The term ‘profiteering’ means a disproportionately large or grossly unfair profit, generated often through manipulation of prices, abuse of dominant position, or by exploiting a bad or unusual situation such as temporary scarcity.

Parasitic and managerial bourgeoisie does not create its own value through private capital accumulation.

Capital accumulation refers variously to:
  1. The creation of new commercial businesses, brands or buying businesses and build them into dominant players in their markets.
  2. Real investment in factors or means of production.
  3. Financial investment in paper assets (commercial paper) like treasury bills and bonds.
  4. Investment in non-productive physical assets such as real estate that appreciate in value.
The process of capital formation and accumulation has the following forms:

1. The initial investment of capital (which could be borrowed capital) in means of production.
2. The creation of surplus-value of capital through production.
3. The realisation of surplus-value through output sales.
4. The appropriation of realised surplus-value as (profit) income after deduction of costs.
5. The reinvestment of profit income in production.

According to a German sociologist and political economist, Max Weber (1864-1920), the key values that contributed to the rising national bourgeoisie in the USA were:
  • Frugality - the practice of both restraint in the acquiring of and resourceful use of economic goods and services in order to achieve lasting and more fulfilling goals;
  • Sobriety - the state of solemn or dignified personal behaviour particularly in moderation; and
  • Saving - to avoid spending money so as to keep or accumulate it.
Laws, policies and regulations that are intended to create indigenous economic empowerment (IEE) but that are not framed along the five different processes of capital accumulation (or capital formation) are unrestrained extremism. They are tantamount to forced transfer of ownership and are the same as equivalent to outright expropriation. Such laws, policies and regulations should go beyond the five processes of capital formation and accumulation but also instill frugality, sobriety and saving among persons of African origin. Opportunity-based affirmative policies are sustainable!

Weber especially emphasized the popular writings of Benjamin Franklin, one of the Founding Fathers of the United States, as an example of how, by the 18th century, diligence in work, scrupulous use of time, and deferment of pleasure had become a part of the popular philosophy of work - Roger B. Hill, Historical Context of the Work Ethic (University of Georgia, 1992).

The ‘Protestant work ethic’ is a Calvinist value emphasizing the necessity of constant labour in a person's calling as a sign of personal salvation and to prevent poverty and destitution, although it does not require Protestantism. Protestantism is the mainstream religious tradition in America.

This was in contrast to the medieval period Catholic thought which saw work as having no instinct value. “Selection of an occupation and pursuing it to achieve the greatest profit possible was considered by Calvinists to be a religious duty. Not only condoning, but encouraging the pursuit of unlimited profit was a radical departure from the Christian beliefs of the middle ages. In addition, unlike Martin Luther, John Calvin considered it appropriate to seek an occupation which would provide the greatest earnings possible. If that meant abandoning the family trade or profession, the change was not only allowed, but it was considered to be one's religious duty” - Adriano Tilgher, 'Homo Faber: Work Through the Ages' (Henry Regnery Company, 1958).

In respect of formerly colonised countries, the middle class consisted of functionaries who staffed government bureaucracies and corporate offices. It was to this layer that the former colonizer was said to have handed over power during the period of decolonization and continued to function for the former colonizer.

It is therefore not by accident that official pronouncements, laws and regulations in formerly colonized countries, are so hostile or harmful to business interests and profit making, even if a number of the ruling party’s members, leaders and benefactors are themselves formerly or currently business owners and executives.

At the centre of the political soul of most African political parties is the spirit of ‘workerism’ or antithesis of capital. Ironically, the founding fathers of such political parties have middle class or professional backgrounds – teachers, lawyers, medical doctors, etc.

Workerism glorifies and celebrates the political importance, centrality and culture of the peasants and working class (generally propertyless people who manually work for wages, including unskilled and semi-skilled labourers). Related to ‘workerism’ is ‘syndicalism’, whose theoretical affirmation is to expropriate the capitalist class.

‘Syndicalism’ comes from a French word, syndicalisme, meaning trade unionism. It is a political and economic doctrine that advocates control of the means and processes of production by organized bodies of workers. To achieve their aims, syndicalists advocate direct industrial action, e.g., the general strike, sabotage, slowdowns, and other means of disrupting the existing system of production.

Most African ruling parties’ historical orientations lie in Marxism or socialism having used as an instrument during their anti-colonialist struggles. Such political parties received assistance from the socialist eastern bloc of Europe when they were still nationalist movements fighting against colonialism. Secondly, the nationalist movements became oriented towards socialism or became hostile towards capital because indigenous people had no private capital of their own and capitalism was easily seen as an instrument of colonialism, racism and settler human and resource exploitation.

The Marxist ideological position is disdainful of nationalism and capitalism. Nationalism is seen as a bourgeois ideology which promotes the privilege, primacy and exclusiveness of the nation, which developed with the emergence of nations and the rise and development of capitalism

Marxists see Capitalism as a system based on the exploitation of the workers by the bourgeoisie (the "capitalists", who own and control the means of production). Karl Marx says this exploitation takes place as follows: the workers, who own no means of production of their own, must seek jobs in order to live. They get hired by a capitalist and work for him, producing some sort of goods or services. These goods or services then become the property of the capitalist, who sells them and gets a certain amount of money in exchange. One part of the wealth produced is used to pay the workers' wages, while the other part (surplus value) is split between the capitalist's private takings (profit), and the money used to pay rent, buy supplies and renew the forces of production.

Thus the capitalist can earn money (profit) from the work of his employees without actually doing any work, or in excess of his own work. Marxists argue that new wealth is created through work; therefore, if someone gains wealth that he did not work for, then someone else works and does not receive the full wealth created by his work. In other words, that "someone else" is exploited. Thus, Marxists argue that capitalists make a profit by exploiting workers, which is highly contestable.

Karl Marx himself said very little about the concrete organization and structure of such a socialist economy. His general remarks about socialism were 'elaborated' by his followers by inference from his criticism of capitalism and by inclusion of principles that did originate with other socialist or 'Marxist' thinkers. This explains why certain views about the organization of a socialist economy that are today presented as 'Marxist' may be in direct contradiction to some of Marx's own views.

What today is called ‘socialist economics’ is largely an analysis or a critique rather an alternative of the structure and workings of a more productive capitalist economy.

Marxism maintained that the value of any commodity is given by the amount of necessary labour time employed in its production. Therefore if a commodity is sold at a price significantly below its value for a prolonged time the producer will go bust as he/she will not be able to meet the costs of paying wages and salaries to obtain the labour necessary for production.

Ludwig von Mises, a notable economist and a major influence and has been called the "uncontested dean of the Austrian School of economics, in "Economic Calculation in a Socialist Commonwealth" (1920) (, demonstrates, that, under socialist economic planning, there are no means of economic calculation and that, therefore, socialist economy itself is "impossible" – i.e. not just inefficient or less innovative or conducted without benefit of decentralized knowledge, but really and truly and literally impossible. He held the view that socialism would be disastrous for a modern economy because the absence of private ownership of land and capital goods prevents any sort of rational pricing or estimate of costs.

Is there an alternative? Yes! We should proceed along capitalist development. “Capitalism transforms social life from the material foundations up to the top - the cultural aspects. It has produced a whole series of entirely new economic phenomena: big industry, machine production, proletarization, concentration of property, industrial crises, capitalist monopolies, modern industry, labor of women and children, etc. Capitalism has produced a new center of social life: the big city, as well as a new social class: the professional intelligentsia. Capitalist economy with its highly developed division of labor and constant progress of technology needs a large specialized staff of employees with technical training: engineers, chemists, architects, electricians, etc. Capitalist industry and commerce need a whole army of lawyers: attorneys, notaries, judges, etc. Bourgeois management, especially in big cities, has made health a public matter and developed for its service large numbers of physicians, pharmacists, midwives, dentists, as well as public hospitals with appropriate staffs. Capitalist production requires not only specially trained production managers but universal, elementary, popular education, both to raise the general cultural level of the people which creates ever growing needs, and consequently demand for mass articles, and to develop a properly educated and intelligent worker capable of operating large-scale industry. Hence, bourgeois society everywhere, popular education and vocational training are indispensable. Consequently we see public schools and numerous elementary, secondary, and college teachers, libraries, reading rooms, etc.

“Capitalistic production and participation in the world market are impossible without appropriately extensive, speedy, and constant communication - both material and cultural. Bourgeois society has thus created on the one hand railroads and modern postal and telegraph services, and on the other based on these material foundations - a periodical press, a social phenomenon which before was entirely unknown. To work for the press there has come into being in bourgeois society a numerous category of professional journalists and publicists. Capitalism has made any manifestation of human energy, including artistic creativity, an object of commerce, while on the other hand, by making art objects accessible to the broad masses of the people through mass production, it has made art an everyday need of at least urban society. Theater, music, painting, sculpture, which, in the period of natural economy had been a monopoly and private luxury of individual, powerful sponsors, are in bourgeois society a public institution and part and parcel of the normal daily life of the urban population,” - The National Question - Selected Writings (1976) by Rosa Luxemburg (1871-1919), a Marxist political theorist, socialist philosopher and revolutionary.

Post-Colonial Economic Policies

Soon after independence, most socialist-oriented politics made official pronouncements that it is dishonourable to make money or to be rich. Such politics are highly against profit and it has led State-owned enterprises to be run down. It was made clear to businessmen that it is a vice to be running a business that make profits and therefore the worst run enterprises have been those owned by the State. Ironically, the same politicians who made such pronouncements had personal business outfits run on the sidelines of their official duties.

The economic policies pursued from the time of independence were highly redistributive and inherently bankrupt while pushing for economic indigenization through salaried and managerial positions in foreign-owned corporations. The strategic objective of the policy of economic indigenization (which in South Africa is called ‘black economic empowerment’ – BEE) was intended to facilitate meaningful participation by black people in the economy by creating a new class of black capitalists, which consequently would expand the economic base for more jobs to benefit the majority.

Colonialism recognised race and the economic model that underpinned the colonial experience was a race-based capitalist system that had a zero tolerance for black capital formation... When are we going to have our own Oppenheimers and Rhodes? Colonialism was underpinned by an Anglo-Saxon value system and an economic model that had champions. In Africa, we seem to have many political champions who have taken it upon themselves to thwart the progress of African entrepreneurship unlike the attitude of the colonial masters to European capitalist adventurism.” – Mutumwa Mawere (, an African business executive, pioneer, financier, banker and entrepreneur.

Most African governments addressed problems by dealing with the Effect (Negative Model) rather than focus on the Supply Side or Cause (Positive Model). The Negative Model approach used a language which is sympathetic to poverty, unemployment and job creation while focusing too much on sharing the ‘milk/eggs’ to eliminate poverty and unemployment, while the cow/hen’s ownership and capacity to produce more ‘milk/eggs’ was not attended to in a way to create prosperity/development and employment.

While in the short term, like 5-10 years, the Negative Model is driven by cravings of consumption and thus economically destructive. A new bourgeois social stratum was created but as managers of international capital locally represented. Therefore the newly formed State, while being redistributionist or welfarist, it protected managerialist and agency capitalism.

A developmental (or welfare) state however does not benefit only the poor and disadvantaged. Growth and development require capital investments; and these reside primarily in private hands. Therefore, a developmental state has to define and regulate its interaction with private capital in such a way that mutual benefit can be derived. This includes an industrial policy that helps to direct private capital into critical sectors; and a labour market policy that prevents super-exploitation and encourages skills development and work-place democracy. It includes offering aspirant black capitalists opportunities which in fact encourage the expansion of this class. A developmental state should also be able to strike the correct balance between state ownership of productive forces and private ownership, guided, inter alia, by the prerogatives of strategic interest, efficiency, technology-transfer, affordability of services and narrow cost-benefit considerations,” – ‘The State, Property Relations and Social Transformation’ discussion paper, ANC’s online journal, Umrabulo No.5, 3rd Quarter, 1998.

The following have been identified as features of a developmental state by Patrick Chabal, Professor of Lusophone African Studies, Kings College London, which he said are missing all over Africa:
  1. Guarantees order and peace other than by repressive measures and uphold rule of law, which requires functioning legal framework;
  2. Maintains basic administration organization at a minimum, which is regulates and enables economic activity over time;
  3. Ensures sufficiently operational infrastructure e.g. communication, transport, electricity;
  4. Provides basic health and education and if possible expansion of higher technical training, which is crucial; and
  5. Ensures finance and banking infrastructure.
He said these features constitute an efficient government and have little to do with whether the State is democratic or authoritarian.

While the Cuban government of Fidel Castro enacted important social reforms, including greatly improved education and health care, it despised private capital formation (PCF) or private wealth creation (PWC), it meant private citizens were to remain dependent on the benevolence of the government. This is paternalism and parentalism!

A National Economy

Creating a national economy means proceeding along capitalist development to create an organic or indigenous capitalist class (ICC). A nation-state without its own capitalists would find it difficult to create, grow and defend its own economy. Economic nationalism has been defined as policies or programmes which are guided by the idea of protecting domestic consumption, labour and capital formation, even if this requires the imposition of tariffs and other restrictions on the movement of labour, goods and capital.

The most prominent of economic nationalists was Senator Henry Clay (1777-1852), a former American political leader and Secretary of State. He defined today what is still being called the ‘American System’ or 'American national economy.' This is the macro-economic philosophy that has dominated United States national policies from the time of the American Civil War until the mid-twentieth century. It consisted of three core policies:
  1. Support industry: The advocacy of protectionism, and opposition to free trade - particularly for the protection of "infant industries" and those facing import competition from abroad. Examples: Tariff of 1816 and Morrill Tariff;
  2. Create physical infrastructure: Government finance of internal improvements to speed commerce and develop industry. This involved the regulation of privately held infrastructure, to ensure that it meets the nation's needs.
  3. Create financial infrastructure: the creation of a financial system al bank with policies that promote the growth of productive enterprises.
The ‘American System’ is a capitalist economic school based on the (Alexander) Hamilton economic programme. These were a set of measures that were proposed by the Secretary of Treasury, Alexander Hamilton and implemented by US Congress during George Washington's first administration. The American School of capitalism was intended to allow the USA to become economically independent and nationally self-sufficient. It is distinct from the free market form of capitalism of Adam Smith, the internationalist socialism of Karl Marx and the comprehensive planned economy of the then Soviet Union. The ‘American System’ has made the American economic system to be what it is today and Alexander Hamilton’s picture has continued to feature on American currency notes.

During its American System period, the United States grew into the largest economy in the world with the highest standard of living, surpassing the British Empire by the 1880s.

From the standpoint of capitalist production, private land ownership is parasitic - because private rent is a deduction from the surplus value…and an obstacle to the free movement of capital. State ownership of land not only provides greater corporate profits, but allows the government to more easily establishes infrastructure or economic zones for investors.” - John Chan, ‘China passes private property law for capitalist elite’, 30 March 2007.

Capital is the financial resources that make more money or value in search of surplus-value. It is the elements of production from which an income is derived (with the exception of land and labour) or it originates in the activity of buying goods and services in order to resell them at a profit which is used to acquire tools, machines, merchandise, houses, means of transportation and any materials used to extract, transport, create, or alter goods.

At the center of capitalist accumulation is the value of profit motive. "The 'profit motive', speaking broadly, means a man's incentive to work in order to gain something for himself — in economic terms, to make money. By Objectivist standards, such a motive, being thoroughly just, is profoundly moral. Socialists used to speak of "production for use" as against "production for profit." What they meant and wanted was: "production by one man for the unearned use of another." - Leonard Peikoff, Objectivism: The Philosophy of Ayn Rand (The Ayn Rand Library, Volume 6, 1993). 

To be capitalist means receiving a financial return and increment or "surplus value" higher than the initial investment. It does so through constantly driving to optimize profitability by increasing the productivity of labour, revolutionizing technology and production techniques.

Since there was neither a national bourgeois class nor an adequate accumulation of indigenous capital soon after independence, the centrality of the economic policies of the State during this period should have been to encourage and support private capitalist entrepreneurship and innovation; and to initiate indigenous capitalist investments.

The current form of the indigenous capitalist class is highly fragmented lacking ideological engagement. It cannot even create national and iconic commercial brands that are upwardly mobile i.e. advancing or likely to advance in economic and social standing.

Years after colonialism, instead, developing countries have continued to view Capital with suspicion and consider it as part of imperialist and neo-colonial agenda because there was no deliberate effort to define how the indigenous capitalist class will relate with established capital without compromising national interests.

Ironically, while we attack former colonizers as new colonizers (i.e. neo-colonizers), they constitute our greatest trading partners - the principal buyers of our primary products and ordinary sources of finished products and lines of credit. It is where we source parts for the industrial sector. It is where we still send our children for education. It is where we spend time for ‘holidaying’ and shopping.

This is the challenge to be faced with the newly emerged indigenous capitalist class. What form of relationship will it have with established capital?

The arrest and imprisonment of the business executives under laws relating to price controls by the Zimbabwean police should be seen in the context of an orientation of the African political ruling class. In situations of price controls, business revenue is determined by State bureaucrats, just like socialist economic planners, who arbitrarily set the prices of products and services. This creates an impression that one is in business as a privilege of the State.

By so doing, the ruling party risks presenting itself as a political party of the working class, informal and small scale traders, rural peasantry and ordinary people only.

As the Financial Mail magazine (27th July 2007) said of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) of South Africa, the ministry responsible for trade, commerce and industry in the lead for price controls imposition is that, yet its core constituency is the business sector while its core mandate is to become pro-business; to champion the cause of business in government and promote investment so that more enterprises and jobs are created; and existing enterprises and jobs are secure. It does so through policy making and regulation. Important skills for the ministry consummate with this mandate are economic analysis and negotiation.

What Can Be Done?

1. We need to immediately deal with creating a national character as described by Karl Kautsky (1854-1938), a Czech-German Jewish philosopher, politician and leading theoretician of social democracy, which enumerates three factors, which make up the “roots of the modern national idea,” as found in the rise of the modern state in all of Europe. 

These factors are: 
i. the desire of the bourgeoisie to assure for itself an internal or domestic market for its own commodity production; 
ii. the desire for political freedom/democracy; and 
iii. expansion of the national literature and culture to the populace

Kautsky’s concept of the national state argued that that capitalistic development strengthens national consciousness, and that the national state is the form of the state “best corresponding to modern conditions, the form in which it can most easily fulfill its tasks.” - Quoted in The National Question - Selected Writings (1976) by Rosa Luxemburg.

Moreover, a capitalistic bourgeoisie needs many other conditions for its proper development: a strong military, as a guarantee of the inviolability of this “fatherland,” as well as a tool to clear a path for itself in the world market; furthermore, it needs a suitable customs policy, suitable forms of administration in regard to communications, jurisdiction, school systems, and financial policy. The bourgeoisie needs for its normal existence not only strictly economic conditions for production, but also, in equal measure, political conditions for its class rule,” – Rosa Luxemburg, ibid.

2. Another measure is outside of public policies i.e. a private initiative of the formation of ‘closed’ African fraternal organizations. Fraternity develops leadership skills, social awareness and personal responsibility so vitally needed in life. In Western Europe and America, the national bourgeoisie is nurtured, groomed and socialized through closed fraternal organisations like - Freemasonic orders, Skull and Bones, Bilderberg, Council for Foreign Relations (CFR), Royal Institute for International Affairs (Chatham House), Fabian Society, etc. These organizations are mechanism of social filtering and grooming into the structures of a national bourgeois. The initiative for this kind of formations should not be done by politically partisan active figures or those ambitious for partisan political power.  

3. The major premise of the creation of a national bourgeois is that anyone can move from one class into another. This is called social mobility. Social mobility is the degree to which, in a given society, an individual's social status can change in the course of his life or the degree to which that individual's offspring and subsequent generations move up the class system. The ability for an individual to become wealthy out of poverty exemplifies a situation when those who are born into poor, working-class or peasant families achieve high socio-economic office in adult life, largely through attaining a formal educational qualification. Social mobility encourages entrepreneurism and innovation leading to a fairer society.

4. With a strong national bourgeois, no political party can afford to seek funding from established capital or its government and agents. Such a national bourgeois will form the core of industrial, commercial, financial structure that shape and influence politics and its candidates. Politics and bureaucrats may ebb and flow, but the Establishment wields moral authority; society should defer to its judgments and assumptions.

5. A national bourgeois provides a ground for a stable economic, political and social foundation among Africans as a people in and out of government. Such a national bourgeois should provide and define a social and financial ethos from which political participation and social activism derives guidance. Political actors and State bureaucrats should relate with the national bourgeois without whose support one cannot make it to the high political offices. Politics should be an instrument of power not the center of power.

Candidates for political and bureaucratic offices should convince and have to impress the national bourgeois in order to win endorsement lest their political behaviour can hurt society and the economy. Whatever the partisan political divide that will exists, the core national economic and political interests shall prevail as a common-ground not a home for political sectarianism. Who can claim that the two political parties in the US are different when it comes to ‘American interests’ at home or foreign? Partisan differences are expected in the means (just like leaves of the same mango tree) not the goals of producing the fruits.

Government, Aristotle (384-322 BCE, himself a student of Plato) says, should be by those people with enough time on their hands to pursue virtue. Aristotle thought that rulers should be propertied and leisured, so, without other worries, they can invest their time in producing virtue. Labourers are too busy. In Book VII, he said "the (politician) must not lead the life of mechanics or tradesmen, for such a life is ignoble, and inimical to virtue. Neither must they be farmers, since leisure is necessary both for the development of virtue and the performance of political duties."

"The Confucian view is that political leaders should be the most talented and public-spirited members of the community, and the process of choosing such leaders should be meritocratic, meaning that there should be equal opportunity for the best to rise to the top," - By Daniel A. Bell, From Marx to Confucius: Changing Discourses on China’s Political Future (

A Strong National Bourgeois Social Strata vs. Investment by Established Capital

Whether we like or not, we already have functional bourgeois institutions - parliamentary democracy through periodical elections; separation of powers of the 3 pillars of the State i.e. Executive, Legislature and Judiciary; checks and balances of power, rule of law; etc. The concept of a nation-state is itself modern and a product of “bourgeois democracy”.

The United States has the most powerful national bourgeois in the world. It can afford to exercise economic nationalism because it has a strong national economy in the hands of its nationals. The US government does not own the media (the purveyors of influence), it does so through its ‘safe and friendly’ hands – the national bourgeois.

While we wish we had a high level of foreign direct investment (FDI), it creates an economy in the hands of foreigners who reap all the benefits of getting excessive rebates and the externalization of capital through dividends, interest on loans and debt repayments.

The Economist defined FDI as a package, a “bundle” because it is far more than mere “capital”: it is a uniquely potent bundle of capital, contacts, and managerial and technological knowledge. It is the cutting edge of globalization (Economist, 24 February 2001).

According to Yash Tandon in a paper entitled ‘Fallacies about the theory of FDI: its conceptual and methodological pitfalls’, FDI is not a sufficient factor for growth (for there are other factors that affect growth too) but is a necessary ingredient.

What developing countries may (or may not) need is capital, especially capital that is embodied in technology. They do not need FDI. Why? Because FDI is really a bundle of assets in the service of transnational corporations (TNCs) in their perpetual quest for profits, markets and sources of raw materials. FDI is a means for foreign owners of capital to acquire assets in the host country. All FDI is inherently problematic. Such investments do not come as a matter of charity; they come to make profits, to make use of local resources, to take advantage of cheap or skilled labour, or to capture the local market against other foreign competitors, indeed even against local enterprises. Foreign direct investors do not transfer technology for the love of it; they do so, if they do it at all, in order to control production and the market (SEATINI Bulletin, Vol. 5, No. 2, 31 January 2002).

Established capital should come on the terms set by nationals as partners in private capital. In eastern Europe, by 2004 during a transition to capitalism almost all basic industries, energy, mining, communications, infrastructure and wholesale trade industries were taken over by European and US multi-national corporations and by billionaires or they have been shut down, because nationals did not have private capital.

Capital should not be a preserve of one race. Therefore, we need highly competitive iconic national brands in all sectors of the economy.

There are no African brands in the ‘World Top 100 Brands’ surveys for the years 2003 to 2007 done by BusinessWeek magazine in association with Interbrand.

In the 2006 survey, there were 13 American brands in the top 20 (Coca-Cola, Microsoft, IBM, GE, Intel, Disney, McDonald's, Citi, Marlboro, Hewlett-Packard, American Express, Gillette and Cisco), while there were 14 of them in the 2007 survey (Coca-Cola; Microsoft; IBM; GE; Intel; McDonald's; Disney; Citi; Hewlett-Packard; Marlboro; American Express; Louis Vuitton; Cisco and Google).

In an annual report compiled by African Business Research Limited (ABRL) for the ranking of the top 200 ‘African’ companies in the African Business magazine (April 2007), majority of the sub-Saharan Africa companies are owned, or are subsidiaries or creations of established transnational capital (ETC) i.e. Caucasian capital.

This was the same for the top 1000 and 100 ‘African’ companies and banks respectively for 2006 by the same business magazine and earlier similar annual reports.

National Economic System

On the left, one finds a socialist/leftist economy which is an economic system based on State ownership of capital. It is where the government directs the kind and nature of production. All socialist/leftist economic viewpoints and arrangements are united by the desire to give the workers greater "control" of the means of production. The workers' control is through the State and therefore people give up economic power to the new parent, the State. The central conviction of socialists/leftists is that those who privately own capital, land and property are inherently exploiters. This arises out of Karl Marx’s definition of the Theory of Value.

According to James Petras, a Bartle Professor (Emeritus) of Sociology at Binghamton University, New York, socialism involves: the ‘socialization’ of the means of production (i.e. to place under government ownership or control), and the transfer of ownership and control of banks, factories, land, social services, foreign trade and the transfer of power from the capitalists to the direct producers (workers), consumers and environmentalists.

Under a socialist representation, elections would take place in the workplace, the neighbourhoods and the cooperatives, leading to a national assembly directly responsible to the worker, peasant, resident and consumer organizations.

In many instances, socialism has been made to be the bureaucratic state control over the economy.

On the right, the classical liberal school of economics was popularized in Europe by Adam Smith, an English economist, when he published a book in 1776 called The Wealth of Nations. He and others advocated the abolition of government intervention in all economic matters. He said there should be no restrictions on manufacturing, no barriers to commerce and no tariffs. Such ideas were "liberal" in the sense of no State controls. This application of individualism encouraged "free" enterprise," "free" competition - which came to mean, free for the private capital to make huge profits as they wished.

The Great Depression of the 1930s led a British economist, John Maynard Keynes, who was the finance minister of the British government and a member of the Fabian Society (founded in 1884 as an intellectual movement concerned with the research, discussion and publication of ideas by a group promoting non-Marxist evolutionary socialism). He particularly advocated for an interventionist government approach, by which the government would use fiscal and monetary measures to aim to mitigate the adverse effects of economic activities and forces. These ideas had much influence on the US President Theodore Roosevelt's New Deal. The belief that government should advance the common good became widely accepted.

The preferred type of an economic model is social market economy. This is required to generate wealth while ensuring economic freedom and the appropriate material incentives for individuals to serve the social good.

The social market economy seeks a middle path between socialist and classical liberal economy and aims at maintaining a balance between a high rate of economic growth, low inflation, low levels of unemployment, good working conditions, social welfare, and public services.

According to the German Ordo-liberalism (Social Market Economy), the State must create a proper legal environment for the economy and maintain a healthy level of competition through measures that adhere to market principles. The concern is that, if the State does not take active measures to foster competition, firms with monopoly (or oligopoly) power will emerge, which will not only subvert the advantages offered by the market economy, but also possibly undermine democracy itself, since strong economic power can be transformed into political power.

The Economist magazine describes a ‘social market’ as the blending of market capitalism, strong labour protection and union influence, and a generous welfare state. The phrase has also been used to describe attempts to make capitalism more caring, and to the use of market mechanisms to increase the efficiency of the social functions of the state, such as the education system.

According to Stephen Padgett, a Professor of Politics at the University of Strathclyde, Britain: "A central tenet of ordo-liberalism is a clearly defined division of labour in economic management, with specific responsibilities assigned to particular institutions. Monetary policy should be the responsibility of a central bank committed to monetary stability and low inflation, and insulated from political pressure… Fiscal policy-balancing tax revenue against government expenditure- is the domain of the government, whilst macro-economic policy is the preserve of employers and trade unions."

Michael Rosch describes a German ‘social market economy’ as characterized by the philosophical idea of brotherly love and the self responsible individual. The major founding theorist of social market economics, Andreas Müller-Armack, remarked that responsibility needs freedom as a necessary condition to enable the individual to select responsible among different options. Müller-Armack said the moral concept of the Social Market Economy consists of three elemental principles, i.e. the principle of:

· Individuality, which aims to the liberal ideal of individual freedom,
· Solidarity, which refers to the idea that any individual human being is embedded into a society of mutual dependencies which obliges to overcome social injustice,
· Subsidiary, which means an institutional rule to shape the relation between individuality and solidarity.

This regulation should assure the individuals’ rights and give them the highest priority, which means - anything which can be done by the individual should be done by it and not by the state.

The Social Market Economy aims to balance the market-principle and the social-principle. The Spirit of Enterprise is then fostered in such an economic environment. It is the ideas and habits that favour the rational pursuit of economic gain. The most important tenet of the Spirit of Enterprise is that it invests “economizing” with high moral significance. The individual engages in enterprising activities not only for the expediency of making a living, but in the expectation that such activity would test his/her inner resources and thus affirm his moral worth.

A major effect of this spirit, as Émile Durkheim, a French sociologist and anthropologist who was decisive in shaping modern sociology noted, is that the entrepreneur performs his tasks with an earnestness of purpose that places them at the center of his life, and endows them with intrinsic dignity. There is nothing degrading about them. The Spirit of Enterprise constitutes a sort of moral ‘’habitus’’ which burdens the possessor of money with a steward’s obligation toward his own possessions.

In an article based on the Harvard University business historian Richard Tedlow’s Giants of Enterprise: Seven Business Innovators and the Empires They Built, Don Mathews, a teacher of economics at Coastal Georgia Community College wrote that "the true Spirit of Enterprise is not about greed or exploitation. It is about creating. It is about building. It is about discovery. And it is about innovating. There are no historical forces of progress. There is only human action, the action of individuals. Individuals create wealth. They do so by creating and building enterprises that combine labour, capital, and materials to make things that didn’t exist before, things that people value. The consequence of their actions is economic growth and development. Great businessmen, for all their humanness, are creators and builders and are driven by, above all else, the desire to create and build. And it is the drive to create and build that is the true spirit of enterprise." - The Free Market, The Mises Institute monthly newsletter, December 2002, Volume 20, Number 12.

A very necessary resources is "Social Market Economy History, Principles and Implementation – From A to Z" (2005) and 'Liberty and the Power of Ideas'

In 1980, Marilyn Ferguson set forth in The Aquarian Conspiracy a "common ground/consensus" model where the Far Left and the Far Right can compromise and reach agreement on individual issues. In a chapter titled "The Power of the Radical Center," Ms. Ferguson asserts that Truth is arrived at via consensus, whereas extremes on any issue are merely half-truths:
"The political perspective of the ...Radical Center (is)...not neutral, not middle-of-the-road, but a view of the whole road. From this vantage point, we can see that the various schools of thought on any one issue -- political or otherwise -- include valuable contributions along with error and exaggeration. 
"As it was expressed in an editorial in the British Journal, ‘The New Humanity’: We are neither right nor left but uplifted forward. The New Humanity advocates a new kind of politics.... Governance must develop a framework, not a rigid structure, and we must find unity within our immense and wonderful diversity. At this point in human evolution there can be no way out of the global political stalemate unless there is first, and fast, a new humanity with a changed psychology. That new psychology is developing, a new humanity is emerging. 
"Most historical movements have their last will and testament along with their manifesto. They have known more surely what they oppose than what they are. By taking a firm position, they trigger on inevitable countermotion, one that will disorient their fragile identity almost at once. Then rapid metamorphosis and self-betrayal: pacifists who become violent, law-and-order advocates who trample law and order, patriots who undo liberties, 'people’s revolutions' that empower new elites, new movements in the arts that become as rigid as their predecessors, romantic ideals that lead to genocide. 
"Anthropologist Edward Hall lamented our cultural inability to reconcile or include divergent views within one frame of reference. We are also indoctrinated by our right/wrong, win/lose, all/nothing habits that we keep putting all our half-truths into two piles: truth versus lies, Marxism versus capitalism, science versus religion, romance versus realism––the list goes on and on. We act as though either Freud or Skinner had to be right about human behavior, as Hall noted, when in fact 'both work and are right when placed in proper perspective.' 
"Partial viewpoints force us into artificial choices, and our lives are caught in the crossfire. Quick, choose! Do you want your politician to be compassionate or fiscally responsible? Should doctors be humane of skillful? Should your schools pamper children or spank them? The rare successful reforms in history –the durable Constitution, for example – synthesize. They blend the old and the new values. Dynamic tension, in the form of the system of checks and balances, was built into the paradigm of democracy. Whatever its flaws, the framework has proved amazingly resilient. 
"When nearly two hundred of the most effective Aquarian Conspirators were asked to categorize themselves politically on a questionnaire, many expressed great frustration. Some checked off every box – radical, liberal, centrist, conservative – with apologies. Some drew across the spectrum. Others wrote marginal notes: 'Liberal but...' 'Radical on some issues, conservative on others.' 'These categories don’t apply.' 'Radical but not in the usual sense.' 'Choices too linear.' 'Old categories useless.' 
"Politicians of the Radical Center are easily misunderstood and unusually vulnerable to attack, regardless of their accomplishments, because they don’t take strident positions. Their high tolerance of ambiguity and their willingness to change their mind leave them open to accusations of being arbitrary, inconsistent, uncertain, or even devious. 
"Traditionally, we have wanted to identify our friends and enemies. Lobbies, political realities, and the media, playing both sides against each other, usually force politicians into taking black-and-white positions. But sooner than we may suppose, Radical Center will be a viable point of view. The rising number of new movements, all demonstrating and pressuring, combined with traditional special-interest lobbies, may finally force politicians to seek a middle way through the mine field. Politicians may finally have no choice but to transcend the either-or dilemma."
Written in October 2007

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