ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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The Global Corporation: Road to Serfdom

What the pathological tempo of concentrated wealth encapsulated in the global corporation unmasks is that the system is out of control. The concentration and centralisation of capital manifested in the global corporation is transpiring in the context of one of international capitalism's most critical crises.

The central goal of political economy, as David Ricardo (1772-1823) stressed, is the scientific study of the growth, the social ownership and the distribution of economic and political power, nationally and internationally.1 It is the grandiose theme that permeates his collected works and correspondence. Understandably, his Principles (1817) was to exert a seminal influence on Marx’s pioneering theoretical contributions on the ‘laws of motion of Capital’ – that is, the compulsive logic and propellants of capitalist accumulation and dis-accumulation that provide a key to the workings and mis-workings of the system.

What this signifies is that capital accumulation, not for consumption but for enhanced accumulation and profits – for boosting shareholder value to deploy the current jargon – has been and remains the overriding goal of capitalism at all stages of its irrepressibly volatile movements: its booms, busts and stagnation. A logic as discernible in the relatively atomistic competition of the era of Adam Smith (1723-90) as it is in the world domination of the current Top 200 corporations as they prepare to plunge into the new millennium.

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