Lazy rascals, spending their substance, and more, in riotous living

“I shall prefer to believe with the cheerful Fourier in all these stories rather than in the realm of the absolute spirit, where there is no lemonade at all”

The utopia, doctrinaire socialism, subordinates the total movement to one of its elements, substitutes for common social reproduction the brainwork of individual pedants and, above all, in its fantasy dispenses with the revolutionary struggle of classes by means of small conjuring tricks or great sentimentality; fundamentally it only idealizes the existing society, takes a picture of it free of shadows and aspires to assert its ideal picture against the reality of this society. (Karl Marx, The Class Struggles in France, 1848 to 1850)

This passage sums up what I think is Marx’s most interesting criticism of utopianism: that utopias, far from being too fanciful, are, as products of the existing society, far too conventional. This is certainly true of Michael Albert’s Parecon, which a friend of mine described as being like a Sorelian myth in reverse, a concerted delibidinization of socialism. Read moreā†“