Capitalism and crisis

Parmenides describes the human being as something, which is very stable. As something not movable. As something that does not expand. Something that is clearly delimited from nothingness. At that point I would only describe the terms, not discuss them. There are probably more than only one interpretation of Parmenides´ theory. 

The being is clearly eliminated from the nothingness. But there is more. There is no nothingness in his description. Because in a nothing nothing can exist. If nothingness does not exist, if everything is enclosed, there is  no possibility of expansion. Because where shall we expand, if there is nothing. 

In the 18th century, the concept of economy was like the concept of being by Parmenides.

Our cosmological theory (I know, we cannot compare Parmenides with modern physic, but its only an attempt, an invitation to a new perspective) allows us to think the expansion. Our universe is expanding with the power of Big Bang. We don’t think, what is outside of the universe. Probably because we are not able to describe the nothingness. But we think it. The being is therefor delimited. 

In the 18th century, the European concept of economy was like Parmenides´ concept of being. Wealth was understood as a fixed quantity that could not increase. Rich people could divide it among themselves, like an existing pie. An increase of wealth was not possible at that time. Everything was static. 

It is different now. The wealth can increase immeasurably. It is free from any physical theory. Because all it needs is a force inside. The greater the force, the greater the gain. But since we cannot generate wealth in outer space, we need another force. What can it be?

Our expansion will destroy us one day. But the crisis will survive.

Lyotard claims that a crisis has enough power to enable an infinite expansion of capitalism. The crisis generates the wealth. The crisis is what keeps capitalism running with an internal tension, like a nuclear power plant. Therefore, in today’s concept of economy, a crisis is necessary. If we don’t have one, a new one is quickly conceived. Or an old crisis is rethought. Or a crisis comes along and will be kept alive as long as possible to be replaced by a new one.

We are expanding in this way. And if we continue to expand in this way, we may one day destroy nothingness. Parmenides’ concept lived on the fact that there are no limits. The crisis at the center of capitalism will not only destroy nothingness, it will not only create a limit, it will tear being to pieces, to be expanded at any cost. Only the crisis will survive. When we all are destroyed.

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