A Psychoanalytical Context to Benny Goodman’s Comments on Marxist Philosophy.(Mr. Goodman’s statements are parenthesised).
The id is driven by the pleasure principle, which strives for immediate gratification of desires, wants, and needs. If we were ruled entirely by the pleasure principle, we would take from others without considering the morality of doing so. This is somewhat analogous to laissez-faire capitalism, which would allow individuals do as they please, with the government not involving itself in the economic system.
The ego operates on the reality principle, which strives to satisfy the id’s desires in realistic and socially appropriate ways. The reality principle evaluates the likely outcomes of an action before deciding to act upon it. ‘Creative Capitalism’ or ‘Progressive Capitalism’ seeks to further human progress by regulating, as one example, the exploitative nature of private utility companies. A more accurate label for these brands of capitalism would be ‘Corporate Capitalism’, wherein corporations are lightly regulated, that is, in ways that are realistic and socially appropriate to them. Regulating capitalism in this way supposedly gives it legitimacy.
(Far from ushering in an era of global peace and prosperity the dominant mode of production, i.e. capitalism, is in urgent need of revision in order to meet the challenges the global community faces. If it does not do so, it might face what Jürgen Habermas called a ‘crisis of legitimacy’ as publics become less accepting of the social problems and the democratic deficit it seems to entail).
The corporate-government hegemony manipulates people through its control of media to believe that individual entrepreneurial spirit is synonomous with the rights of corporate capitalism to be lightly regulated, as if a regulation of the former equates to regulation of the latter. Individual entrepreneurs experience numerous government imposed costs, and would be ruthlessly prosecuted for not paying tax, wherehas corporations face little ‘real’ regulation, and find it easy to avoid tax. Yet, successive politicians representing the corporate-government hegemony threaten that corporations would “pull out of Britain” if unduly regulated, that is, in a way that is not realistic (to them). Believing that individual ‘freedom’ is the same thing as corporate ‘freedom’ is like believing in little green men.
(The gains ushered in by modernity are increasingly going to a wealthy ‘elite’ despite a growing middle class in many developing countries).
The superego is the aspect of personality is concerned with a sense of right and wrong. The superego acts to perfect and civilize our behaviour. It works to suppress all unacceptable urges of the id and struggles to make the ego act upon idealistic standards rather that upon realistic principles. Marxism offers one version of idealistic standards, in proposing that the element of personality that seeks to combine with others for the social good is stronger than the one which drives grasping individualism, this latter force creating privileged elites that perpetuate the system that favours them through their control of the media. This is not to say that the ruling elite believe their propaganda – whatever dominates their state of mind is rooted in one of these fundamental affections; the greed for self-aggrandisement; the greed for power; the greed for money, and the greed for recognition. They do what they must and call it by another name. The elite will ‘demonise’ a vulnerable section of society in order to satiate their various greeds, inflaming prejudice and avarice. All such thinking is worth no more and no less than the cavernous emotions underlying it.
(The class which has the means of material production at its disposal, and which has control at the same time over the means of mental production, and over thinkers, as producers of ideas, can sell and promulgate those ideas as the ‘right ones’. The ruling class can regulate the production and distribution of ideas and define them to serve their own causes. ‘Liberty’ to the ruling class means something quite different to those who have nothing but the shirts on their backs. This does not mean there will not be rebels in thought and deed, only that ruling ideas tend to become ‘taken for granted’ and ‘common sense’ and anyone not willing to take part in selling their labour is then classed as deviant or criminal. Thus we have social and political issues with ‘out groups’ such as travellers, chavs, skivers v strivers. Countervailing voices are pushed to the margins and tolerated as long as they don’t do anything to change things).
(“In the United States many people have accepted the idea that state provision for health is akin to Marxism and communism. The anti-Obama rhetoric on this issue is very clear on this point. Those with an interest in private medicine and those with a visceral hatred of state provision for anything, mounted a very successful campaign tapping into ordinary Americans love of individuality and scepticism about state involvement”).
(History does not progress through ‘ideas’ alone, or though Allah’s or God’s will, or as a manifestation of Hegel’s ‘Geist’ (Spirit), but through the changing material conditions of existence, and the struggles of humanity to pacify the conditions of their existence).
(It is not the consciousness of men that determines their existence, but their social existence that determines their consciousness. (Marx 1859).
(The ‘poverty of philosophy’ is its concerns with abstractions, ideas, ‘facts’ or consciousness devoid of their material context. That is, a philosophy or any understanding of how the world works which does not take into account the material conditions that man finds himself and the power relationships that result, is an empty philosophy. Removing the analysis of power relationships allows the ‘Ruling Class’ to promote their own interest in the form of ‘Ruling Ideas’. Therefore, encouraging people to ‘find themselves’ without a class analysis lets the ruling class completely off the hook because this requires no changes whatsoever in the mode of production. Capitalism can embrace any amount of ‘new age’ philosophy as long as that philosophy does not challenge the basic power structures of wealth accumulation and distribution).
The superego is present in the conscious, preconscious and unconscious. Thus, it is not the consciousness of men that solely determines their existence, but preconscious and unconscious drives embedded in the id, which are tempered by realistic (ego) or idealistic (super ego) forces. The material conditions people find themselves in, whatever their relationship to the ruling elite, can not be changed by any philosophy that challenges ‘Ruling Ideas’ on a solely moral level, of good versus bad; of fair versus unfair; of dominant versus slave class. Humanity can progress through an understanding of the psyche and how it shapes social existence and, hence, consciousness; of the forces within the psyche that both drive the ruling elite and make them the masters of people through its use in propaganda. However much material conditions change, a constant will be ‘Ruling Ideas’ that are legitimised by Allah’s will, God’s will, or Mammon; or by any such ‘legitimising’ force. This is to understand how the world works. To know the underlying nature of the beast is to be better able to challenge it.
The provision of health care is being given to corporations funded by private equity debt. See http://qualityofnursingcare.webs.com/ – a site that suddenly lost its high search engine ranking. Who controls search engines? See http://www.amazon.com/The-Commodity-Care-Carol-Dimon/dp/1909465119
Become a loud countervailing voice!
Refuse to be marginalised!
Do not fear the ice-pick!
Power to the soviets!
lenin nightingale 2013