Monday, 5 March 2007

The Promise of Capitalism - A Lie


  1. this is sooooo true (well, there is no such thing as truth but only interpretations, with only 1 criterion for authenticity -- the immediacy of experience. Or, as it has been said, Only Truth can be written by blood).

    Those pictures in Indonesia are not very different from conditions in some parts of Armenia, even Yerevan... less then a mile from the Theme Park that they've built in the center.

    I can't believe they've sold the entire Orbita factory for just $700,000. And ArmenFilm with all the copyright on films like Nran Guyn@ for just $1,000,000.

    They're saying that Armenian GDP is back at its pre-1990 level, but whom are they kidding? Dodo has 500,000,000 just in his Armenian accounts (hell knows how much is there in his offshore accounts or indirect accounts). Rob is said to be worth $200,000,000. There are people who work for $1/day. And you know, somehow Armenians have learned to make sense of it and to logicalise in a peculiar manner. Like the other day this woman tells me "Ah, but Dodi Gago is a great man, do you know how much he gives to the charity?"

    I'm not a communist, so I don't believe in state-imposed economic system, because sooner or later people will always demand democracy (it's in our psyche). And I don't know if you lived in Yerevan in 1980s. People were more decent, friendly and open. Now even our blogosphere reflects the contradictions and paradoxes of our capitalistic society. Capitalism is not just a mode of production - production for profit of the enterpreneur; Capitalism is above anything a specific social relationship, which is inherently hierarchical.

    Somehow a system must be devised that would Empower the Worker Councils (who are ellected, or even practiced on a basis of direct democracy for smaller enterprises) and Collectivists (for agrarian and rural sector) to be in charge of their production, and protect them the threats by the big corporate businesses. If this could be established a worker controlled enterprise would not need subsities of the taxpayer and it would soon oust the corporate production out of the market through simple laws of economics. After that the Imperialists will have nothing of their classical claim to say against such an economy -- not even that it is not democratic.

  2. "I can't believe they've sold the entire Orbita factory for just $700,000. And ArmenFilm with all the copyright on films like Nran Guyn@ for just $1,000,000."

    I can't believe it either. I did not think that Armenfilm was worth 1 mln dollars. Somebody overpaid unless its real estate is in valuable locations.

  3. I havn't checked the ArmenFilm privatization issue for a long while... but I think the final deal was set at $800,000 (the price of a 2 bedroom appartment in a European city) for the whole land (which is huge), buildings, equipment and all the filmstock mastercopies and the copyright on them + the name "ArmenFilm"... all of that for 800,000. The original deal also included the promise to invest 6 million over the next 15-20 years, but in the later reports there was no mention of that.

    Everybody knows how privatization works in Armenia. Abrahamyan wants to buy ArmenFilm, he pays the surface price of 800,000 directly to RA governemnt revenue, then he deposits separate instalments in the offsore accounts of Gagik Tsarukian, which on paper appear as Carribean Banana Trading Corporation, which invests into Armenian economy and thus helps Tsarukian to get tax-break, at the same time there is another company in Muritius which trades in paintings, which is clled Rob's Art Dealership, which sells a child's painting (worth nothing) to the Banana Trading Corportion for $10million. And which bank fascilitates all thiese transactions? Oh yes... Converse bank. The end result: all three parties are happy and manking money, while a national treasure and a cinematheque of national art is sold for peanuts and is no longer in people's control or benefit.

    They are making money without building anything of a value.

    It is when I hear stories like this that I realise that it won't stop even if we have fair ellections.

    Lord Acton once said: "Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely"