Monday, November 10, 2008

Sauvik must read The Life Divine; it is never too late to learn

[The term "symbolic exchange" was derived from Georges Bataille's notion of a "general economy" where expenditure, waste, sacrifice, and destruction were claimed to be more fundamental to human life than economies of production and utility (1988 [1967]). Bataille's model was the sun that freely expended its energy without asking anything in return. He argued that if individuals wanted to be truly sovereign (e.g., free from the imperatives of capitalism) they should pursue a "general economy" of expenditure, giving, sacrifice, and destruction to escape determination by existing imperatives of utility... Bataille and Baudrillard presuppose here a contradiction between human nature and capitalism. They maintain that humans "by nature" gain pleasure from such things as expenditure, waste, festivities, sacrifices, and so on, in which they are sovereign and free to expend the excesses of their energy (and thus to follow their "real nature"). The capitalist imperatives of labor, utility, and savings by implication are "unnatural," and go against human nature." Jean Baudrillard (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)]

[On Austrians... And Against the Chicago School
from ANTIDOTE by Sauvik: All statistics are necessarily “historical,” in that they are measurements of past events. Unless backed by sound theory, no one can predict anything about the "uncertain future" from mere data... Theories matter. Theories are the link between sensation and perception. We do not “perceive” reality correctly if our minds are full of wrong theories. Just as the man-on-the-street sees a bonny baby and concludes it is a “problem” because his mind is full of Malthusianism. Or a Marxist looks upon entrepreneurs as “exploiters of labour.” According to the Austrian school of Catallactics (I no longer use the word “economics”), the pathway to knowledge in the Science of Exchange is through introspection. That is, we look inwards into our own minds. The Chicago school looks outwards at reality, measuring it to find laws. This is an imitation of Physics. It is “scientism.” It merely mimics science. The Austrians look for “laws of thought” that are common to all human beings, because all human beings possess the human mind. And this mind has an unchanging “logical structure.” Once we discover the laws of thought in our own minds, we have the means of understanding “human action” – because all human action in market exchanges is deliberate, and therefore guided by these laws of thought.]

Sauvik's ontology stops at the "unchanging logical structure” of the "the human mind" but he should probe further. He must read The Life Divine; it is never too late to learn. [TNM] 10:27 AM

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