Thursday, July 07, 2005

Left Libertarian Blogs

Larry Gambone long time Canadian anarchist and an old pal has launched his own blog; Porcupine. You will find him commenting on my articles here and at Vive Canada!

Recently he has blogged about the Zapatistas, a libertarian peasant movement in Chiapas, Mexico that has been the most successful organizing attempt since the FAI (Federation of Iberian Anarchists) organized in Spain during the Spanish Revolution and Civil War 1936-39. The Zapatista's have put out a call to move towards greater broadbased community and political organizing. Larry points out, correctly, that the movement is more libertarian than lenninist. Which bodes well for models of revolutionary struggle in the newly capitalized world, also known as the Newly Industrialized Nations (oh, he says, is that what NIN stands for).

Kevin Carson runs , Free Market Anti-Capitalism, and has his own blog. Quoting from the libertarian right and the marxist left is a hard balancing act to do, yet he does it admirably. As I wrote here about the need for a real Movement of the Libertarian Left, Kevin fits that description admirably.

An example of Kevin's analysis from left/right libertarian perspective is in his blog comment that Toyota will be developing another new car factory here in Canada, because of our state subsidized infrastructure. And how some American commentators who have taken note of this news, were offended when Toyota explained it was because Ontario had a skilled workforce. It's not because workers in the Southern U.S. right to work states (read non-union) are dumber than unionized Canadians workers, perhaps less well trained was the actual statement from Toyota, as Kevin points out it was actually because;

In addition to lower training costs, Canadian workers are also $4 to $5 cheaper to employ partly thanks to the taxpayer-funded health-care system in Canada, said federal Industry Minister David Emmerson. "Most people don't think of our health-care system as being a competitive advantage," he said.

While Americans give tax breaks that are greater than those offered by Ontario and the Federal Government, we have medicare, and a social welfare system that is a real economic advantage to monopoly capitalists, as Kevin points out.

For instance the only profit GM made last year was from its Financial Credit business and auto sales in Canada. GM sold more cars here than in the U.S., but not nearly as many as Toyota has. And Toyota will be scooping up a laid off workforce from shut down operations of the Big Three in Ontario. In otherwords thanks to the Big Three and their policies of downsizing, outsourcing and refusal to build smaller cars, Toyota has a capitve pre-trained workforce that is unemployed and ready to work. Big advantage that.

"The level of the workforce in general is so high that the training program you need for people, even for people who have not worked in a Toyota plant before, is minimal compared to what you have to go through in the southeastern United States," said Gerry Fedchun, president of the Automotive Parts Manufacturers' Association, whose members will see increased business with the new plant....

And they can thank NAFTA for having opened up the market by ending the Auto Pact. While CAW like other Canadian Unions opposed NAFTA, and sort of still do, the result was the expansion of the non unionized Toyota operations in Canada and secondary parts companies. The auto belt in Canada is home to the successful non-unionized Magna parts company, which daddy gave to Belinda Stronach to run before she was seduced to run for the Conservatives, which is critical to just in time supplies to automakers who have outsourced those operations.

And while the CAW has lobbied for state funding for the Big Three which it has contracts with, the result of those efforts have also opened the playing field to Toyota. So the CAW will have to get busy doing what unions are supposed to do, organizing Toyota and Magna, and worry less about brokering deals between the NDP and the Liberals .

Ah the great thing about blogging you can add information to the page as you find it. And upon wandering in the blogosphere I came across another Libertarian blog that call itself CLASSical Liberalism, "a blog for all things CLASSical Liberal, with an emphasis on educating about aspects of classical liberalism (hence, the "CLASS" in CLASSical Liberal)--history, theory and, of course, practice." He has a series of biographies on line of Robert Anson Heinlein, Emma Goldman, Harriet Martineau, Liberal Economist and Sociologist, whom I hadn't heard of, and a great summer reading list. He's putting Class Struggle back into Libertarianism. Congrats on a thoughtful and good reading blog.

Anyways just a way of introducing a couple of great libertarian blogs to read in our little corner of the blogosphere.


Kevin Carson said...

Thanks, Eugene!

Re the Zapatistas, their decentralized political support network was a sort of dress rehearsal for the later Seattle and post-Seattle movements. It was also the model for the "netwar" techniques that got Rand analysts David Ronfeldt et al in such a state. Their hysteria over the potential for "swarming" the state and media with demands sounded a lot like Huntington's whining about the "crisis of governability"--but stepped up a couple orders of magnitude.

hou said...

we have medicare, and a social welfare system that is a real economic advantage to monopoly capitalists, as Kevin points out.
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