這是我讀Harvey的書,針對每一章節所提出的提問,我也把一些段落作摘要,擷取一些很有感覺的句子。1990年代開始有關全球化的研究蓬勃發展,不同的學術領域分別從不同的角度來分析全球化,左派地理學的理論大將David Harvey總結全球化的影響,他認為全球化下的新自由主義轉型是階級力量的復辟,是新的資產階級力量的復甦,在1980年代歐美國家開始進行的新自由主義轉型,常常是在鼓吹個人自由與權力的口號下進行,因此漸漸受到社會的普遍支持,因而新自由主義已經變成社會一般人的常識了。 這其實不難瞭解,因為台灣的新自由主義轉型也跟著民主化過程結合,在1980年代末,政治反對運動認為民營化可以降低國民黨政權對台灣社會的政治與經濟控制,因此,也成為私營化、公司合作、以及所謂的第三條路線鋪下一條路。 不過就Harvey來說,所謂的保障個人自由,在新自由主義下被利用來保障資產階級的自由,保障這些已經有無限自由、根本不需要特別保障的人的自由,結果就是資產階級的利益大幅增加,政策大幅偏向補貼這些階級的利益,因此,社會的不平等加巨。這也可以從台灣看到這些年的減稅措施,一直傾向減少上層階級的稅收,資產階級直接透過政治的影響力去擷取更多的利益。這種過多對於資產階級保障,造成過多的暴利,是經由剝奪的積累而來。剝奪的積累以下有摘要,包括不停地將社會共有資產私有化、商品化、金融化,國家私有化,甚至是經濟危機也有可能在資產階級的操縱之下,將已經是貧窮的國家資產轉移到富有國家。總結來說,新自由主義有很多面具,以自由與正義的名義,造成世界更多的不公不義。 A brief history of neoliberalism

David Harvey
http://davidharvey.org/
Chapter 1 & 2

Freedom’s just another word
• What is neoliberalism?
• How is the concept of freedom being appropriated to support neoliberalism? What is wrong with that?
• What is embedded liberalism?
• Do you agree that the neoliberalist turn is a restoration of class power?
• What is the meaning of class power?

The construction of consent
• How is common sense constructed? How does it impact our judgment?
• How is the consent towards neoliberalist reforms constructed in the US and England?
• What did the left movements fail to stop the trend?
• Why couldn’t Clinton and Brair do much to change the process of restoration of class power?
• How does neoliberalism rise from minority political, ideological, and intellectual positions to mainstream?

A brief history of neoliberalism
David Harvey
http://davidharvey.org/
Chapter 3, 4 & 5

Chapter 3: The Neoliberalist State
• What is the neoliberal state?
• What is the nature of governance of neoliberal state?
• What are advantages and disadvantages of public and private partnership?
• What is the role of the state in neoliberalism? Does the state reduce its role and power?
• What is the role of nationalism for the neoliberal state?
• Why does the neoconservatism have close relationships with the constitution of neoliberalism?

Chapter 4 & 5: uneven geographical developments
• What is the context of neoliberal reform in Mexico, Argentina, South Korea, Sweden, and China? What are the consequences?
• What is the complex interplay of internal dynamics and external forces? Who are the internal supporters in those countries?
• What is the role of the state in the process?

Chapter 3: The Neoliberalist State
• The neoliberal state in theory
– Favour strong individual private property rights
– The rule of law
– The institutions of freely functioning markets and free trade
– Trickle down—the elimination of poverty can best be secured through free markets and free trade
– Privatization of assets
– Individual freedom and responsibility
– The free mobility of capital between sectors, regions, and countries is regarded as crucial.
– Suspicious of democracy—favour governance by experts and elites

The neoliberal state in practice
• 1. the need to create ‘good business or investment climate’ for capitalistic endeavours
– The treatment of labour and the environment as mere commodities
• 2. in the event of a conflict, neoliberal states typically favour the integrity of the financial system and the solvency of financial institutions over the well-being of the population or environmental quality.

• (p.74)extracting surpluses from impoverished Third World populations in order to pay off the international bankers
• The extraction of tribute via financial mechanisms
• Debt relief—IMF’s neoliberal institutional reforms
• Labour market--flexibility
• The nature of governance
– Public-private partnerships
• A radical reconfiguration of state institutions and practices

The neoconservative answer
• Restore order
• Morality
• The neoliberal state needs nationalism of a certain sort of survive. Forced to operate as a competitive agent in the world market and seeking to establish the best possible business climate, it mobilizes nationalism in its effort to succeed.
• The picture of many states, each prepared to resort to draconian coercive practices while each espousing its own distinctive and supposedly superior moral values, competing on the world stage is not reassuring.

Chapter 4: uneven geographical developments
• The means whereby class power could be transformed and restored were gradually but unevenly put into place during the 1980s and consolidated in the 1990s. Four components were critical in this.
• First, the turn to more open financialization that began in the 1970s accelerated during the 1990s. Foreign direct investment and portfolio investment rose rapidly throughout the capitalist world. But it was spread unevenly (Figure 4.1), often depending on how good the business climate was here as opposed to there. Financial markets experienced a powerful wave of innovation and deregulation internationally.
– an increasing connectivity between corporations and financial markets (the stock exchanges)

• Secondly, there was the increasing geographical mobility of capital. This was in part facilitated by the mundane but critical fact of rapidly diminishing transport and communications costs. The gradual reduction in artificial barriers to movement of capital and of commodities, such as tariffs, exchange controls, or, even more simply, waiting times at borders (the abolition of which in Europe had dramatic effects) also played an important role.

• Thirdly, the Wall Street-IMF-Treasury complex that came to dominate economic policy in the Clinton years was able to persuade, cajole, and (thanks to structural adjustment programmes administered by the IMF) coerce many developing countries to take the neoliberal road.3 The US also used the carrot of preferential access to its huge consumer market to persuade many countries to reform their economies along neoliberal lines (in some instances through bilateral trade agreements). These policies helped produce a boom in the US in the 1990s.
• Lastly, the global diffusion of the new monetarist and neoliberal economic orthodoxy exerted an ever more powerful ideological influence.
– the control of inflation and sound public finance (rather than full employment and social protections) as primary goals of economic policy.

A brief history of neoliberalism

David Harvey
http://davidharvey.org/
Chapter 6 & 7

What are the consequences of neoliberalism?
What is accumulation by dispossession?
Do you agree that the management and manipulation of crises has evolved into the fine art of deliberative redistribution of wealth from poor countries to the rich?
What is wrong for the commodification of everything?
What should we be careful about the definition of universal rights?
What rights should we pursuit for better future?
What are the alternatives to contest neoliberalism?

Chapter 6: Neolieralism on Trial
Neoliberal achievement
Failed to stimulate worldwide growth
In much of Latin America neoliberalization produced either stagnation (in the ‘lost decade’ of the 1980s) or spurts of growth followed by economic collapse (as in Argentina).
Circumscribed neoliberalization in Sweden has achieved far better results than sustained neoliberialization in the UK.

Why are so many persuaded that neoliberalizaation through globalization is the 'only alternative' and that it has been so successful?
First, the volatility of uneven geographical development has accelerated, permitting certain territories to advance spectacularly (at least for a time) at the expense of others. If, for example, the 1980s belonged largely to Japan, the Asian 'tigers', and West Germany, and if the 1990s belonged to the US and the UK, then the fact that 'success' was to be had somewhere obscured the fact that neoliberalization was generally failing to stimulate growth or improve well-being.
Seccondly, neoliberalization, the process rather than the theory, has been a huge success from the standpoint of the upper classes.

If conditions among the lower classes deteriorated, this was because they failed, usually for personal and cultural reasons, to enhance their own human capital (through dedication to education, the acquisition of a Protestant work ethic, submission to work discipline and flexibility, and the like).
The rise of finance and of financial services has been paralleled by a remarkable shift in the remuneration of financial corporations (see Figure 6.2) as well as a tendency for the larger corporations (such as General Motors) to fuse the two functions.
Speculative urban property markets, furthermore, have become prime engines of capital accumulation.
by 2000, IT accounted for around 45 per cent of all investment, while the relative shares of investment in production and physical infrastructures declined.

The main substantive achievement of neoliberalization, however, has been to redistribute, rather than to generate, wealth and income.
accumulation by dispossession
the commodification and privatization of land and the forceful expulsion of peasant populations (Mexico and of China, where 70 million peasants are thought to have been displaced);
conversion of various forms of property rights (common, collective, state, etc.) into exclusive private property rights (most spectacularly represented by China);
suppression of rights to the commons;
commodification of labour power and the suppression of alternative (indigenous) forms of production and consumption;
colonial, neocolonial, and imperial processes of appropriation of assets (including natural resources);
monetization of exchange and taxation, particularly of land;
the slave trade (which continues particularly in the sex industry);
and usury, the national debt and, most devastating of all, the use of the credit system as a radical means of accumulation by dispossession.

Accumulation by dispossession comprises four main features:
1. Privatization and commodification.
The corporatization, commodification, and privatization of hitherto public assets been a signal feature of the neoliberal project.
2. Financialization.
Deregulation allowed the financial system to become one of the main centres of redistributive activity through speculation, predation, fraud, and thievery.

3. The management and manipulation of crises.

Crisis creation, management, and manipulation on the world stage has evolved into the fine art of deliberative redistribution of wealth from poor countries to the rich.
The analogy with the deliberate creation of unemployment to produce a labour surplus convenient for further accumulation is exact.


4. State redistributions.
Privatization
revisions in the tax code to benefit returns on investment rather than incomes and wages
 The mortgage interest rate tax deduction operates in the US as a subsidy to upper-income homeowners and the construction industry.

The commodification of everything
The commodification of sexuality, culture, history, heritage; of nature as spectacle or as rest cure; the extraction of monopoly rents from originality, authenticity, and uniqueness (of works or art, for example)-these all amount to putting a price on things that were never actually produced as commodities.
The disposable worker: For capitalists, however, such individuals are a mere factor of production, though not an undifferentiated factor since employers require labour of certain qualities, such as physical strength, skills, flexibility, docility, and the like, appropriate to certain tasks. Workers are hired on contract, and in the neoliberal scheme of things short-term contracts are preferred in order to maximize flexibility.
Hollowness of capitalist consumer culture: The capitalist consumer culture, however spectacular, glamorous, and beguiling, perpetually plays with desires without ever conferring satisfactions beyond the limited identity of the shopping mall and the anxieties of status by way of good looks (in the case of women) or of material possessions.


Environmental degradation
US—suburban sprawl
The over-exploitation of forestry resources after privatization in Chile is a good case. But structural adjustment programmes administered by the IMF have had even worse pacts. Imposed austerity means that poorer countries have less money to put into forest management. They are also pressurized to privatize the forests and to open up their exploitation to foreign lumber companies on short-term contracts. Under pressure to . earn foreign exchange to payoff their debts, the temptation exists to concede a maximal rate of short-term exploitation. To make matters worse, when IMF -mandated austerity and unemployment strikes, redundant populations may seek sustenance on the land and engage in indiscriminate forest clearance.

On rights
This amounts to privatization by NGO. In some instances this has helped accelerate further state withdrawal from social provision. NGOs thereby function as 'Trojan horses for global neoliberalism'. Furthermore, NGOs are not inherently democratic institutions.
organizations agitate successfully to ban child labour in production as a matter of universal human rights, they may undermine economies where that labour is fundamental to family survival. Without any viable economic alternative the children may be sold into prostitution instead (leaving yet another advocacy group to pursue the eradication of that).
The universality presupposed in 'rights talk' and the dedication of the NGOs and advocacy groups to universal principles sits uneasily with the local particularities and daily practices of political and economic life under the pressures of commodification and neoliberalization.

Dispossession entails the loss of rights. Hence the turn to a universalistic rhetoric of human rights, dignity, sustainable ecological practices, environmental rights, and the like, as the basis for a unified oppositional politics.
But its results in the human rights field are more problematic, given the diversity of political-economic circumstances and cultural practices to be found in the world. Furthermore, it has been all too easy to co-opt human rights issues as 'swords of empire'
I think it unfortunate to abandon the field of rights to neoliberal hegemony. There is a battle to be fought, not only over which universals and what rights should be invoked in particular situations but also over how universal principles and conceptions of rights should be constructed.

To live under neoliberalism also means to accept or submit to that bundle of rights necessary for capital accumulation. We live, therefore, in a society in which the inalienable rights of individuals (and, recall, corporations are defined as individuals before the law) to private property and the profit rate trump any other conception of inalienable rights you can think of.
I cannot convince anyone by philosophical argument that the neoliberal regime of rights is unjust. But the objection to this regime of rights is quite simple: to accept it is to accept that we have no alternative except to live under a regime of endless capital accumulation and economic growth no matter what the social, ecological, or political consequences.

there are derivative rights, such as freedoms of speech and expression, of education and economic security, rights to organize unions, and the like. Enforcing these rights would have posed a serious challenge to neoliberalism. Making these derivative rights primary and the primary rights of private property and the profit rate derivative would entail a revolution of great significance in political economic practices.


Chapter 7: Freedom's Prospect
in 1935, President Roosevelt said, 'must forswear that conception of the acquisition of wealth which, through excessive profits, creates undue private power'.
there is little time or space in which to explore emancipatory potentialities outside what is marketed as 'creative' adventure, leisure, and spectacle. Obliged to live as appendages of the market and of capital accumulation rather than as expressive beings, the realm of freedom shrinks before the awful logic and the hollow intensity of market involvements.
reversing the withdrawal of the state from social provision but also confronting the overwhelming powers of finance capital.

The end of neoliberalism
Financial crises (p.189) The typical signs are
soaring and uncontrollable internal budgetary deficits,
a balance of payments crisis,
rapid currency depreciation,
unstable valuations of internal assets (for example in property and financial markets),
rising inflation,
rising unemployment with faIling wages,
and capital flight.

Of these seven main indicators the US now has the distinction of scoring high on the first three and there are serious concerns with respect to the fourth. The current 'jobless recovery' and stagnant wages suggest incipient problems with the sixth.
Such a mix of indicators elsewhere would almost certainly have necessitated IMF intervention (and IMF economists are on record, as are both former and current Federal Reserve chairs VoIcker and Greenspan, complaining that the economic imbalances within the US are threatening global stability). But since the US dominates the IMF this means nothing more than that the US should discipline itself, and that appears unlikely.

Alternatives (p.198)
But we first need to initiate a political process that can lead us to a point where feasible alternatives, real possibilities, become identifiable. There are two main paths to take.
We can engage with the plethora of oppositional movements actually existing and seek to distil from and through their activism the essence of a broad-based oppositional programme.
Or we can resort to theoretical and practical enquiries into our existing condition (of the sort I have engaged in here) and seek to derive alternatives through critictical analysis.

The Zapatista rebellion in Chiapas, Mexico, for example, did not seek to take over state power or accomplish a political revolution; it sought instead a more inclusionary politics. The idea is to work through the whole of civil society in a more open and fluid search for alternatives that would look to the specific needs of the different social groups and allow them to improve their lot.
Finding the organic link between these different movements is an urgent theoretical and practical task. But our analysis has also shown that this can only be done by tracking the dynamics of a capital accumulation process that is marked by volatile as well as deepening uneven geographical developments. (p. 203)

But alternative rights can also be defined. The critique of endless capital accumulation as the dominant process that shapes our lives entails critique of those specific rights-- the right to individual private property and the profit rate-that ground neoliberalism and vice versa.
an entirely different bundle of rights,
the right to life chances, to political association and 'good' governance, for control over production by the direct producers, to the inviolability and integrity of the human body, to engage in critique without fear of retaliation, to a decent and healthy living environment, to collective control of common property resources, to the production of space, to difference, as well as rights inherent in our status as species beings.

There is a far, far nobler prospect of freedom to be won than that which neoliberalism preaches. There is a far, far worthier system of governance to be constructed than that which neoconservatism allows.

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