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Poli 243- Jan 15th Lecture Notes.docx

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McGill University
Political Science
POLI 243
Mark Brawley

Poli 243 Lecture Notes January 14 2012 Marxism  Marx criticized liberal policies for failing to deliver the promised results  Liberalism  market relationships  Free exchange  Marx says he does not see voluntary exchange, but rather people who are thrown off the land, who had previous relationships with the landowners o Taken off the land and being told that they are workers  Took legal and political changes to implement liberal policies  Liberal policies does not make everyone better off  Arguments based on dialectical logical (i.e., events are driven by contradictions) o How systems change, and overtime, when pressures get too big, a new system emerges  Contradictions are defined as logically identified inconsistencies which may or may not appear obvious  Marxism relies on the Labor Theory of Value (All value is created by Labor) o Particular view of wealth and what is being produced and how value is created o Economists in that time period believed that all goods had to be created by labor o Labor was the root of production Classical Marxism  1.) Social classes are the primary actors o In understanding how economy operates, he observes classes in their hierarchal order (capitalists  workers) o Key actors in society are the different social classes  2.) Classes act in their own material interests o They are competing for wealth  3.) The expropriation of surplus value is exploitation o If classes are competing for material interests, and if capitalists are getting the better transaction, there is therefore an unfair transaction -Marx’s viewpoint is that economics is the beginning of politics - For realists, economics is the outcome of the politics The Labor Theory of Value  V=K+W+SV  V stands for value (V is created by labor)  K stands for Capital (Capital is the accumulation of some previous labor)  W stands for Wages (What are workers being paid)  SV stands for Surplus Value Marx’s Model of Capitalism  Surplus value is created o Concentration of capita per worker  More goods with less wage labors o Creation of “Reserve Army” of labor  Social Democracy  Some people thrown out of work, because of the emphasis on more capital and less workers = more profit  People (especially those who are unemployed) are willing to work for
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