Accounting identity: a function of finance and economics in which an equality must be true regardless of the value of its variables, or a statement that by definition or construction must be true. In economics, an equality such as the balance of payments is, by definition or construction, true. Where an accounting identity applies, any deviation from the identity signifies an error in formulation, calculation, or measurement. The phrase accounting identity can distinguish between propositions that are theories, which may or may not be true, or relationships that may or may not always hold and statements that are by definition true. Despite the fact that the statements are by definition true, the underlying figures as measured or estimated may not add up due to measurement error, particularly for certain identities in macroeconomics.
In economics, one of the most well known, of many, accounting identities is the balance of payments identity: a current account + a capital account = a change in an official reserve account. A common problem with the balance of payments identity is that, due to measurement error, the balance of payments may not total correctly. For example, the Economist magazine has noted that
Accumulation: capital accumulation: the acquisition of objects of value in the investment of money, other assets and speculative risk as business for profit. In economics, accumulation is often equated with investment, largely in real capital goods such as cash, securities, assets and debt. The concentration and centralization of capital are two of the results of such accumulation. In certain contexts, accumulation refers to
In theory, the current-account deficits and surpluses of individual countries should cancel each other out, but because of statistical errors and omissions, they never do.
- real investment in tangible means of production.
- financial investment in paper assets
- investment in nonproductive physical assets such as residential real estate that appreciate in value and
- human capital accumulation, e.g., education, training skills for a future labor force. Non-financial capital accumulation is a key factor for economic growth, since additional investment is essential to enlarge the scale of production and increase employment. Without this, the total tangible wealth that can be traded would stagnate.
In modern macroeconomics and econometrics, the term capital formation is often used in preference to accumulation, though UNCTAD now uses the term accumulation. In Marx' critique of political economy, capital accumulation refers to the moneymaking operation whereby a sum of money is transformed into a larger sum of money. the moneymaking operation whereby a sum of money is transformed into a larger sum of money. Capitalism is the moneymaking activity, though Marx often equates capitalism with the capitalist mode of production. Here, capital is defined as economic or commercial asset value in search of additional value or surplus value. This requires property relations, which enable objects of value to be appropriated and owned. Marx found that capital accumulation has a double origin in 1) trade and 2) expropriation, legal or not.
The reason is that a stock of capital can be increased through a process of exchange or trading up but also through directly taking an asset or resource from someone else, without compensation. David Harvey calls this accumulation by dispossession. Marx does not discuss gifts and grants as a source of capital accumulation, nor does he analyze taxation in detail.
Agape: highest love: agape love formed the heart of Christian theology as—the love of God or Christ for mankind. Linguist theologians conclude that agape represents divine, unconditional, self-sacrificing, active, volitional and thoughtful love. Although the word does not have specific religious connotation, the word has been used by a variety of contemporary and ancient sources. Thomas Oord defined agape as an intentional response to promote well-being when responding to that which has generated ill-being. In his book, The Pilgrimage, author Paulo Coelho defines agape as the love that consumes, which is the highest and purest form of love, one that surpasses all other types of affection. Contemporary philosopher Slavoj Žižek refers to it as political love. Greek philosophers at the time of Plato and other ancient authors have used forms of the word to denote love of a spouse or family, affection for a particular activity and as distinct from philia: an affection that could denote friendship, brotherhood, non-sexual love and eros: sexual love.
Aggregate demand: effective demand: The level of output and employment in the economy, as established by demand and recognized as such in Keynesian economics. In a reversal of Say's law, Keynes, in essence, claims that demand creates its own supply up to the limit that is set by full employment
.In classical economic theory, which was the term Keynes used in reference to the economics prior to his General Theory and specifically that of Arthur Pigou, adjustments in prices would automatically make demand tend to the full employment level. Keynes, pointing to the sharp fall in employment and output in the early 1930s, argued that whatever the theory, this self-correcting process had not happened. In the neo-classical theory, the two main costs are labor and money as credit. If more labor than demand for it existed, then wages would fall until hiring began again. If too much savings and not enough consumption occurred, then interest rates would fall until people either cut their savings rate or started borrowing.
Ahimsa: doing no harm: himsa: without violence: a central tenet of the Indian religions of Jainism, Buddhism, and Hinduism. Ahimsa is a rule of conduct that bars the killing or injuring of living beings. It is linked to the notion that all kinds of violence bring unwanted karmic costs. The extent to which the principle of nonviolence can or should be applied to different life forms is a controversy among scholars, movements and currents within the three religions, a debate for thousands of years. The earliest references to ahimsa are found in the texts of historical Vedic religion, dated to 8th century BCE. There, ahimsa means non-injury, without a moral implication, but later as nonviolence to animals and then, to all beings. In the 19th and 20th centuries, prominent figures of Indian spirituality all emphasize the importance of ahimsa. Gandhi applied ahimsa to politics through his satyagraha.
Alienation: theory that points out the separation of aspects of life that belong together naturally, or to an antagonism between things otherwise in harmony. In the most urgent use of the concept, it is the alienation of people from aspects of their human nature. Alienation in the labor process, as Marx' theory of alienation, is based upon his observation that, in emerging industrial production under capitalism—workers lose control of their lives and selves by not having any control of their work. Workers, thus, never become autonomous, self-realized human beings in any significant sense, except the way the bourgeoisie wants the worker to be realized.
Marx viewed alienation as a systematic result of capitalism. His theory relies on Feuerbach's The Essence of Christianity (1841), which argues that the idea of God has alienated the traits of the human being. Stirner took the analysis further in The Ego and Its Own (1844), declaring that even humanity is an alienating ideal for the individual, to which Marx and Engels responded in The German Ideology (1845). Alienation in capitalist societies occurs as each worker contributes to the common wealth, yet can only express this basic social aspect of individuality through a system of production that is privately owned for which each individual functions as an instrument—not as a social being. In this work written in 1844, Marx explains how alienation arises from private labor in the form commodity production. How does alienation arise from private labor, from commodity production? Marx explains, writing that:
Let us review the various factors as seen in our supposition. My work would be a free manifestation of life, hence an enjoyment of life. Presupposing private property, my work is an alienation of life, for I work to live, to obtain the means of life. My work is not my life.
In labor under capitalism, Marx finds four types of alienation: 1) of a worker's species essence as a human being instead of machine, 2) between workers, since capitalism reduces labor to a commodity, which it trades on the marketinstead of a social relationship, 3) of the worker from the product, since the product is appropriated by the capitalist class, which thus denies the worker's control and 4) from the act of production such that work becomes meaningless activity with little or no intrinsic satisfaction.
Anti-metaphysics: Metaphysics attacked as futile, too vague and archaic as typified by Hume, who wrote:
If we take in our hand any volume of divinity or school metaphysics, for instance, let us ask: does it contain any abstract reasoning concerning quantity or number? No. Does it contain any experimental reasoning concerning matter of fact and existence? No. Commit it then to the flames, for it can contain nothing but sophistry and illusion.—An Enquiry Concerning Human UnderstandingImmanuel Kant prescribed a limited role to the subject and argued against knowledge progressing beyond the world of our representations, except to knowledge that the noumena exist:
...though we cannot know these objects as things in themselves, we must yet be in a position at least to think them as things in themselves. Otherwise we should be landed in the absurd conclusion that there can be appearance without anything that appears.—Critique of Pure Reason p. Bxxvi-xxvii
A. J. Ayer is famous for leading a case against metaphysics in which he claimed that its propositions were meaningless in his book Language, Truth and Logic. Ayer was a defender of verifiability theory of meaning. British universities became less concerned with the area for much of the mid 20th century. However, metaphysics has a reemerged in recent times among some philosophy departments due to the perceived failure of verificationism.
A more nuanced view is that metaphysical statements are not meaningless statements, but rather that they are generally not fallible, testable, or provable statements (see Karl Popper). That is to say, there is no valid set of empirical observations nor a valid set of logical arguments, which could definitively prove metaphysical statements as true or false. Hence, a metaphysical statement usually implies an idea about the world or about the universe, which may seem reasonable but is not empirically verifiable. That idea could be changed in a non-arbitrary way, based on experience or argument, yet there exists no evidence or argument so compelling that it could rationally force a change in that idea, in the sense of proving it false.
Autonomy is the concrete expression of the exercise of the right to self-determination, within the framework of membership in the National State. As a result, The indigenous peoples shall be able to decide their own form of internal government as well as decide their political, social, economic and culture organization.Balance of trade: net export as NX: the difference between the monetary value of exports and imports in an economy over a certain period, which is a
- positive balance of trade as a trade surplus, which consists of exporting more than is imported;
- negative balance of trade as a trade deficit (trade gap)
- balance sheet that distinguishes the assets and liabilities of all the goods and services of a country,
- part of the current account, which includes
other transactions such as income from the international
investment position and international aid, thus
- an account that show a surplus shows an increasing net international asset position of a country, and likewise
- an account that show a deficit shows a decreasing net international asset position.
- identical to the difference between a country's output and its domestic demand, which is the difference between the goods a country produces and how many goods it buys from abroad. This does not include money re-spent on foreign stocks, nor does it factor the import of materials and goods to produce other goods for the domestic market.
- prices of goods manufactured at home (influenced by supply)
- exchange rates
- trade agreements or barriers
- other tax, tariff and trade measures and
- the business cycle at home or abroad.
Barter: trade that uses mediums of exchange other than money as goods or services are exchanged for other goods and/or services in bilateral or multilateral trade. Barter and money are the two major means of balancing an economic exchange. Barter is recognized as trade in societies without monetary systems, although barter exists in most societies parallel to monetary systems. Barter crosses over to the spheres of trade with money when economies suffer with very unstable currencies and hyperinflation. In addition, barter is used as an intercultural exchange between craftsmen or artists of different countries, especially when the exchange bridges the gap between the rich and the poor. A transaction can occur when the wants of economic actors fit the other and allow for an exchange cycle between their bids: each party must supply a good or service that the other party desires.
Some entities develop a system of intermediaries who can store and trade commodities, but who may suffer economic risk. Others develop a system with a virtual value unit such as barter dollars, scripts, or trade credits that measure and balance exchanges, similar to a monetary system. Multilateral barter is more complex to settle, yet it allows trades that are otherwise impossible with bilateral barter. However, with the use of a singular platform, such as a barter exchange, then bartering amongst businesses is facilitated, even in cross-border barter trade. In the USA, the group Beyond Barter extends the concept to include the free sharing of services. Although there is no attempt to balance contributions in individual transactions, controls ensure that members are not overburdened.
Barter can occur through a mutual interest or desire between two or more groups or parties of different economic cultures to swap/exchange goods, knowledge, or events that are mutually understood as valuable. Barter is the agreement arrived at when any possible system of currency of an intermediary is not useful or fixable in the swap/exchange situation. The exchange events, goods, skills, intercultural valuable knowledge & competence of any kind, whether in terms of craftsmanship, mutual entertainment, or spiritual endeavor may qualify as barter.
In the past, goods were to be exchanged in the goods of another without considering of its money value. Many pre-capitalist or pre-market economies organized the production and distribution of goods and services by way of tradition, top-down command, or community democracy. Instead of market exchange, they organized trade by using barter. Relations of reciprocity and/or redistribution, thus, substituted for market exchange. Trade and barter were mainly reserved for trade between communities or countries. Barter is still used when the monetary system fails to measure the economic value of goods.
Barter becomes more difficult as people become dispossessed of the means of production of widely needed goods. For example, if money were to be severely devalued in the USA, most people would have little of value to trade for food (e.g., a farmer can only use so many cars). When monetary constraints are too expensive for the economic actors, barter facilitates important transactions between firms or countries to exchange commodities. A well-known example of multilateral barter is the triangular trade model. Money was once considered the simpler option for small trades, though the Internet has changed that perception, especially for swapping.
As cultural exchange, barter is often deemed a less sophisticated form of market than the money markets. Yet, it is a highly sophisticated means of trade and cultural exchange of knowledge, skills, craftsmanship, etc. between parties of uneven economic strength, within a global market economy. Barter works as a concept among non-institutional artist groups or collectives. The renowned theatre group Odin Teatret of Denmark uses it, as do others in that sense. Odin Teatret applied the concept of barter in their early period, while touring and exchanging theory-practices in a variety of countries mostly in third world, rural and traditional societies.
Barter, as a more nomadic form of trade, is less sophisticated and less developed form of trade.This is because the nomadic has been subordinated to the governance of the settler in the societies of imperial governance. For the nomadic/indigenous, the economical intermediary (e.g. money) is blocking the flow of the barter situations since the currency/current value will not easily be fixed. The Barter tour-journeys of the Odin Teatret are central in the International School of Theatre Anthropology. The essence of barter is the reciprocal presentation. Through barter, Odin Teatret enters into direct dialogue with a group or a local community by means of an exchange of song, dance, sketches, improvisations and other cultural activities. Barter can work in a village, a neighborhood, a school, a prison or a refugee camp.
Beloved community: an ideal central to Dr. King whose initial optimism about the possibility of actualizing such a community was realized in Reinhold Niebuhr’s Christian realism. The ideal as such can be traced through all Dr. King's speeches and writings, from the earliest to the last. In one of his first published articles he wrote:
The purpose of the Montgomery bus boycott is reconciliation, redemption and
the creation of the beloved community.
In 1957, writing in the newsletter of the newly formed Southern Christian Leadership Conference, he described the purpose and goal of that organization as follows:
The ultimate aim of SCLC is to create and foster the beloved community in America where brotherhood is a reality. SCLC works for integration. Our ultimate goal is the genuine inter-group and interpersonal living, which is the meaning of integration.
In his final book he wrote: "Our loyalties must transcend our race, our tribe, our class and our nation. Dr. King’s vision was the fully integrated society, a community of love and justice wherein brotherhood would be an actuality in all of social life. Supporting Dr. King’s ideal of the beloved community was his assumption that human existence is social in nature. The solidarity of the human family is a phrase he frequently used to express this idea.
We are tied together in the single garment of destiny, caught in
an inescapable network of mutuality.
He said this in one of his addresses to affirm that reality is made up of structures that form an interrelated whole, in other words, that human beings are interdependent, relying on each other. What a person is or possesses he owes to others who have preceded him.
Dr. King saw the participants in the civil rights movement as representing the beloved community, as a microcosm. The people who attended mass meetings and rallies of the movement, joined in its demonstrations and supported its aims in many other ways came from every section of society in the United States. The educated and the illiterate, the affluent and the welfare recipient, white and black men and women who had been separated by rigid social and legal codes were brought together in a common cause. Indeed, since Dr. King wanted to make the base of the movement as broad as possible, he frequently called upon whites for help in his various campaigns. He could envision the beloved community only through the alleviation of economic inequity and the achievement of economic justice.
Capital flight: capital export: the flow of investment capital from one country to another. It consists of foreign direct investment in an existing enterprise of the host country or the building of new facilities, for example, a GM built factory in China. Other forms of capital export include bank loans, stocks and bonds investment, real estate, etc.
Causality: causation: cause and effect: a directional relationship between one event: cause and another event: effect, which is the result of the first. This basic, informal understanding suffices in everyday usage, however, a philosophical analysis of causality or causation has proven difficult. The work of philosophers in an effort to comprehend causality and how best to characterize it began in ancient philosophy. In the Western philosophical tradition, explicit discussion stretches back at least to Aristotle and continues as a central theme in current journals of philosophy.
Though cause and effect typically explain events, other conditions include: processes, properties, variables, facts, and states of affairs. Which of these comprise the correct causal relata and how best to characterize the nature of the relationship between them has no generally accepted answer and discussion of it persists. According to Max Born, until the 20th century, three assumptions were dominant in the definition of causality: 1) Causality postulates that there are laws by which the occurrence of an entity `B' of a certain class depends on the occurrence of an entity `A' of another class, where the word entity means any physical object, phenomenon, situation, or event. `A' is called the cause, `B' the effect, 2) Antecedence postulates that the cause must be prior to, or simultaneous with, the effect and 3) Contiguity postulates that cause and effect must be in spatial contact or connected by a chain of intermediate things in contactMax Born. But, according to Sowa, in 2000:
Relativity and quantum mechanics have forced physicists to abandon these assumptions as exact statements of what does occur at the most basic levels, though they do remain valid at the level of human experience.
The deterministic worldview is one in which the universe is no more than a chain of events, one after another according to the law of cause and effect. To hold this worldview, as an incompatibilist, is to deny free will, though the compatibilists argue that determinism is compatible, even necessary for free will.
Learning to bear the burden of a meaningless universe and justify one's own existence is the first step toward becoming an Übermensch: the overman, which Nietzsche speaks of at length in his philosophical writings. Existentialists have suggested that people have the courage to accept that while no meaning has been designed in the universe; we each can provide a meaning for ourselves. Philosophers have pointed out the difficulties in establishing theories of the validity of causal relations; yet, there is no plausible example of causation afforded daily of which is our own personal ability to be the cause of events. This concept of causation does not prevent seeing ourselves as moral agents.
Children's rights: the human rights of children, with a specific attention to the rights of the special protections, needs and care given to the young. This includes 1) the child’s right to association with their biological parents, 2) human identity, as well as the basic needs for food, 3) universal state-paid education, 4) health care and 5) criminal laws appropriate for the age and development of the child. Interpretations of children's rights range from 1) allowing children the capacity for autonomous action and 2) the enforced right of children being free of physical, mental and emotional abuse, including the threat of it, as defined by law. Other definitions include the rights to care and nurturing.
A child is any human being below the age of eighteen years unless, under the law applicable to the child, adulthood is attained earlier. According to Cornell University, a child is a person, not a sub-person, and the parent has absolute interest and possession of the child, though this is the view almost exclusive to the United States. The term child does not necessarily mean minor but can include adult children as well as adult nondependent children. However, in international law there are no definitions of other terms for the purpose of describing young people as adolescents, teenagers, or youth. Therefore, the children's rights movement is considered distinct from the youth rights movement. The field of children's rights includes aspects of law, politics, religion and morality in relation to children.
Children's rights are defined in numerous ways including a wide spectrum of civil, cultural, economic, social and political rights. Children's rights tend to be of two general types: 1) those advocating for children as autonomous persons under the law and 2) those placing a claim on society for protection from harms perpetrated on children because of their dependency. These have been labeled as the right of empowerment and as the right to protection. One organization (Canadian) categorizes children's rights into the categories of
- Provision: Children have the right to an adequate standard of living, health care, education and services and to play. These include a balanced diet, a warm bed to sleep in and access to schooling.
- Protection: Children have the right to protection from abuse, neglect, exploitation and discrimination. This includes the right to safe places for children to play, constructive parenting behavior and the recognition of the evolving capacities of children.
- Participation: Children have the right to participate in communities and have programs and services for themselves. This includes children's involvement in libraries and community programs, youth voice activities and involving children as decision-makers.
- Economic, social and cultural rights as they relate to the conditions necessary to meet basic human needs such as food, shelter, education, health care and gainful employment. Included are rights to education, adequate housing, food, water, the highest attainable standard of health, the right to work and rights at work, as well as the cultural rights of minorities and indigenous peoples and
- Environmental, cultural and developmental rights known as third generation rights, which include 1) the right to live in safe and healthy environments and 2) groups of people have the right to cultural, political and economic development.
- Freedom of speech and thought
- Freedom from fear
- Freedom of choice: the right to make decisions and
- Ownership over one's body: vis-à-vis crimes such as the trade, prostitution and pornography of children.
Circulation of commodities: the social process that transfers commodities from sellers in which commodities are exchange values into the hands of buyer in which they become use values. Commodities can only exist as exchange values for a seller and use values for a buyer. In order for a commodity to be both an exchange value and a use value it must be produced for exchange. The process of exchange alienates the ordinary commodity when its antithesis: the money commodity becomes involved. During exchange, the money commodity confronts the ordinary commodity and disguises the true form of the ordinary commodity. Commodities as use values and money as exchange value are now on the opposite poles and exist as separate entities. In practice, in the process of exchange, gold or money functions as an exchange value while commodities function as use values. The existence of a commodity is only validated through the form of money and money is only validated through the form of a commodity. This dualistic fact of money and commodities is directly related to the concept in Marx of use-value and his concept of value.
M —> C = C —> M as a purchase represents a sale, although they are two separate alterations. This process allows for the movement of commodities and the circulation of money. Commodity-into-Money, then that money turned into a commodity to be exchanged for more money or object commodity: C —> M —> C is the first turn of the commodity, or sale. C —> M. In the process of sale, the value of a commodity, which is measured by socially necessary amount labor time, is then measured by the universal equivalent that is gold. The second turn of the commodity: purchase. M —> C Through the process of purchase, all commodities lose their form by the universal alienator that is money.
Since every commodity disappears when it becomes money it is impossible to tell from the money itself how it got into the hands of its possessor, or what article has been changed into it.—Marx
Marx described this alienation as loss to a mentality of commodity fetish, in which the things that people produce the commoditiesappear to have a life of their own to which human behavior adapts. This hides the fact that the exchange and circulation of commodities are the fruit and reflection of social relationships among people. Under capitalism, social relationships of production among workers or between workers and capitalists are mediated through commodities, which includes labor bought and sold in the market.
Circulation of money is first initiated by the transformation of a commodity into money. The commodity is taken from its natural state and transformed into its monetary state. When this happens, the commodity falls out of circulation into consumption. The previous commodity now in its monetary form replaces a new and different commodity continuing the circulation of money. In this process, money is the means for the movement and circulation of commodities. Money assumes the measure of the value of a commodity as the socially necessary labor-time. The repetition of this process constantly removes commodities from their starting places, taking them out of the sphere of circulation. Money circulates in the sphere and fluctuates with the sum of all the commodities that co-exist within the sphere. The price of commodities varies by three factors: the movement of prices, the quantity of commodities in circulation and the velocity of circulation of money.
Civil and political rights: A class of rights that protect the freedom of individuals from unjust infringement by government and private organizations and ensure one's ability to participate in the civil and political life of the state without discrimination or repression. Civil rights include the 1) assurance of peoples' physical integrity and safety 2) protection from discrimination on grounds such as physical or mental disability, gender, religion, race, national origin, age, or sexual orientation and 3) individual rights such as the freedoms of thought and conscience, speech and expression, religion, the press and movement. Political rights include natural justice (procedural fairness) in law, such as the rights of the accused, including the right to a fair trial, due process, the right to seek redress or a legal remedy and rights of participation in civil society and politics such as freedom of association, the right to assemble, the right to petition and the right to vote. Civil and political rights comprise the first portion of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, with economic, social and cultural rights comprising the second part. The theory of three generations of human rights considers this group of rights to be first-generation rights and the theory of negative and positive rights considers them to be negative rights.
The phrase civil rights is a translation of Latin ius civis: rights of citizens. Roman citizens could be either free: libertas or servile: servitus, yet both groups all had rights in law. After the Edict of Milan in 313, these rights included the freedom of religion. Roman legal doctrine was lost during the Middle Ages, but claims of universal rights could still be made based on religious doctrine. According to the leaders of Kett's Rebellion (1549):— All bond men may be made free, for God made all free with his precious blood-shedding. In the 17th century, English common law Judge Sir Edward Coke revived the idea of rights based on citizenship by arguing that Englishman had historically enjoyed such rights based on the Magna Carta and other sources. Although Coke's view of legal history was dubious, his commentaries were highly influential. Parliament approved Coke's Petition of Right in 1628, a document that argued for the rights and liberties of Englishmen. The Massachusetts Body of Liberties, an early Bill of Rights, was adopted in 1641. John Milton in his Areopagatica of 1644 used the phrase civil liberties. Oliver Cromwell speaking to parliament in 1657 used the term civil rights.
The English Bill of Rights was adopted in 1689. The Virginia Declaration of Rights, by George Mason and James Madison, was adopted in 1776. It is the direct ancestor and model for the U.S. Bill of Rights (1789). In early 19th century Britain, the phrase civil rights most commonly referred to the problem of legal discrimination against Catholics. In the 1860s, Americans adapted this usage in reference to newly freed African slaves [prisoners of war]. Congress enacted civil rights acts in 1866, 1871, ‘75, 1957, 1960, ‘64, ‘68 and 1991.
Civil and political rights were among the first to be recognized and codified. In many countries, they are constitutional rights and are included in a bill of rights or similar document. They are also defined in international human rights instruments, such as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. Civil and political rights need not be codified to be protected, although most democracies worldwide do have formal written guarantees of civil and political rights. Civil rights are often considered to be natural rights. Thomas Jefferson wrote in his 1774 A Summary View of the Rights of British America: — A free people claim their rights as derived from the laws of nature and not as the gift of their chief magistrate.
Custom plays a role. Implied rights are rights that courts may find to exist even though not guaranteed by written law or custom. An example is the right to privacy in the United States. The question of who civil and political rights apply to is a subject of controversy. In many countries, citizens have greater protections against infringement of rights than non-citizens. At the same time, civil and political rights are considered to be universal rights that apply to all persons. When civil and political rights are not guaranteed to all as part of equal protection of laws, social unrest may ensue. The Civil Rights Movement was a worldwide political movement for equality before the law occurring between approximately 1950 and 1980. It was accompanied by much civil unrest and popular rebellion. While civil rights movements over the last sixty years have resulted in an extension of civil and political rights, the process was long and tenuous in many countries and most of these movements did not achieve or fully achieve their objectives. In its later years, the civil rights movement took a sharp turn to the radical left in many cases.
Questions about civil and political rights often emerge; for example, to what extent should the government intervene to protect individuals from infringement on their rights by other individuals, or from corporations? and, In what way should employment discrimination in the private sector be dealt with? Political theory deals with civil and political rights. Robert Nozick and John Rawls expressed competing visions in Nozick, Anarchy, State and Utopia and Rawls, A Theory of Justice.
Collective bargaining: the process in which workers organize and bargain with employers about issue of workplace conditions, compensation and benefits, schedule and production. In various contexts of national labor and employment law, collective bargaining takes on a more specific legal meaning. In a broad sense, however, it is the coming together of workers to negotiate the any aspect of their employment.
A collective agreement is a labor contract between an employer and one or more unions. Collective bargaining consists of the process of negotiation between representatives of a union and employers represented by management, in some countries via employers' organization in respect of the terms and conditions of employment, such as wages, hours of work, working conditions, grievance-procedures and the rights and responsibilities of trade unions. The parties often refer to the result of the negotiation as a collective bargaining agreement or as a collective employment agreement.
Several theoriesvia industrial relations, economics, political science, history and sociology and the writings of activists, workers and labor organizationshave attempted to define and explain collective bargaining. One theory holds that collective bargaining is a human right and thus deserves legal protection. Article 23 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights identifies the ability to organize trade unions as a fundamental human right. Item 2a of the International Labor Organization's Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work defines thefreedom of association and the effective recognition of the right to collective bargaining as an essential right of workers.
In June 2007, the Supreme Court of Canada made an extensive review of the rationale for holding collective bargaining as a human right. In the case of Facilities Subsector Bargaining Association v. British Columbia, the Court made these observations:
Economic theories present models that aim to explain some aspects of collective bargaining from the perspective of economic theory as the:
The right to negotiate as a collective of workers with an employer enhances the human dignity, liberty and autonomy of workers. It gives workers the opportunity to influence the establishment of workplace rules and thereby gain some control over the major aspect of their lives that is their work. Collective bargaining is not a mere instrument for pursuing external ends; rather, it is important as an experience in self-reliance, self-determination and engagement in shaping ones destiny. Collective bargaining permits workers to achieve a form of workplace democracy and to ensure the rule of law in the workplace. Workers gain a voice to affect the rules that control a major aspect of their lives.
- Monopoly union model (Dunlop, 1944), according to which the monopoly union has the power to maximize the wage rate; the firm then chooses the level of employment; this model has left the recent literature.
- Right-to-manage model, developed by the British school during the 1980s (Nickell). In this model, the labor union and the firm bargain over the wage rate according to a typical Nash Bargaining Maximum, written as: ? = Uß?1-ß, for which U is the utility function of the labor union, ? : the profit of the firm and ß represents the bargaining power of the labor unions and
- Efficient bargaining proposed by McDonald and Solow, 1981in which the union and the firm bargain over both wages and employment or hours of work.
Colonialism: the imposition of colonies in a territory or state by people from another territory or, more often, a state. Colonialism is a process in which a colonizing state usurps the sovereignty of the colonized. Thus, the social structure, government and economics of the colonized are changed, by the colonists of the colonial state. Colonialism is a set of unequal relationships between the colonial state, the colonists and the colonized as the indigenous population.
Colonialism occurred largely from the 15th to the late 20th centuries when European nation states established colonies on other continents. Colonialism and imperialism were ideologically linked with mercantilism. The explanations of and motives behind colonialism include the:
- acquisition of land and resources , cheap labor, profits, market expansion by way of imperialism
- an intent of hegemony, regional and global, of the colonial state in its quest for security in the form of power over others: imperialism
- the escape and refuge of pilgrims from persecution into the colonial state and
- propagation of the colonialist's way of life in terms of religion, politics, culture and technology as exceptionalism
Commodities: products that have the highest and most constant demand. They include raw materials, agricultural crops and finished goods as the essentials for life, but are supplied without qualitative differentiation across a given market. Prices of commodities are determined according to their market as a whole. In general, these are basic resources and agricultural products. Commodification occurs as a goods or services market loses differentiation across its supply base, often by the diffusion of the intellectual capital necessary to acquire or produce it efficiently. As such, goods that once carried premium margins for market participants have become commodities, such as generic drugs and silicon chips.
In classical political economy and the critique of it by Marx, a commodity is any good or service produced by human labor and offered as a product for sale on the market. Some other priced goods are treated as commodities, e.g. human labor-power, works of art and natural resources, even though they are products per se for neither the market nor as reproducible goods. Marx' analysis of the commodity is intended to help solve the problematic question: what are the factors that establish the economic value of goods, using the labor theory of value as the test. Smith, Ricardo, et al debated this issue at length. Value and price have different meanings in economics. Therefore, theorizing the relationship of value to market price has been a challenge for both liberal and Marxist economists.
Commodities exchange: a type of stock market: an actual place or a virtual: electronic place where various commodities and derivatives products are traded. Most commodity markets across the world trade in agricultural products, other raw materials and contracts based on them of which may include: spot prices, forwards, futures and options on futures. Other sophisticated products may include: interest rates, environmental instruments, swaps, or ocean freight contracts.
Commodity fetish: merchandise fetish: the theory about the state of social relations that arise in capitalist market-based societies in which social relationships are transformed into objective relationships between commodities or money. People in capitalist societies have their material life organized through the medium of commodities. They trade their labor power, which, in Marx' view, is a commodity for a special commodity that is money and use that commodity to claim various other commodities produced by other people. The social nature of society is destroyed by the abstraction of commodities.
Marx conceived this theory in the first chapter of his main work about political economy in Das Kapital, 1867. Marx' use of the term fetish suggests an ironic comment on the rational, scientific mindset of industrial capitalist societies. In Marx' day, the main use of the word was for the study of primitive religions. Marx' fetishism of commodities might propose that just such primitive belief systems exist at the heart of modern society. Most of the Marxian thought since then defines commodity fetishism as an illusion arising from the central role that private property plays in the social processes of capitalism. Property is the basis of the dominant ideology in capitalist societies.
Use-value: the usefulness of an object or action is cut apart from exchange-value: the marketplace value of an object or action. An example is that a pearl or a lump of gold is worth more than a horseshoe or a corkscrew. This abstraction is referred to as fetishism. Marx defined social to mean the essential organization of a society, i.e., as those processes by which a society allocates the tasks necessary for its survival. Under this system, producers and consumers have no direct human contact or conscious agreements to provide for one another. Their productions take on a property form that is they meet and exchange in a marketplace, and return in property form. Production and consumption are private experiences of person to commodity and material self-interest, instead of person-to-person and communal interests.
Commodity form: a theory of law proposed by a Soviet legal theorist, which asserts that the legal form is the parallel of the commodity form under capitalist society. All law is concerned with the process of the exchanging of commodities between subjects who act as the "guardians" of commodities created by law to enable the commodity production form of society to function. The theory can be explained as based on two premises: logical and historical.
Communitarian: a philosophy that balances individual rights and interests with that of the community as a whole and argues that individual people as citizens are shaped by the cultures and values of their communities. It derives from an 1840's term as conceived by the British utopian socialist movement, which refers to a member or advocate of a communalist society. The modern use of the term is a redefinition of the original: sense as most communitarians trace their philosophy to earlier thinkers, as used in two senses:
- Philosophical communitarianism: considers classical liberalism as incoherent in terms of ontology and epistemology and, thus, opposes it. Unlike classical liberalism, which construes communities as originating from the voluntary acts of pre-community individuals, it emphasizes the role of the community in defining and shaping individuals. Communitarians believe that the value of community is not sufficiently recognized in liberal theories of justice.
- Ideological communitarianism: a radical centrist ideology that is marked, at times, by leftism on economic issues and moralism (conservatism) on social issues. This usage was conceived by and when in title case refers, to the responsive communitarian movement of Amitai Etzioni and other theorists.
Comparative advantage: Theory that argues for trade as a benefit to all trade partners involved: countries, regions, individuals and firms when they produce goods with different relative costs. The net benefits of such an outcome are the gains from trade. An absolute advantage gives a country a trade perk as it has the lowest absolute cost of production in a good: it can produce more output per unit of input than any other country.
t shows that what matters is not the absolute cost, but the opportunity cost of production. This can be measured as how much production of another good needs to be reduced to increase production by one more unit. It shows that even if a country has no absolute advantage in any product, i.e., it is not the most efficient producer of any good, the disadvantaged country can still benefit by specializing in and exporting the products for which it has the lowest opportunity cost of production. Economists who advocate global free trade contend that the principles of it as conceived by Ricardo do not apply where the factors of production have international mobility. Some economists argue that it is impossible to falsify it because its premise is a tautology.
Consciousness-raising: The process of helping oneself and others become politically aware. In groups, the goal of it is a better understanding of women's oppression by bringing women together to discuss and analyze their lives, without the interfering presence of men.
Feminists in the 19th and 20th centuries (likely earlier) formed consciousness-raising groups to help others become aware politically. Consciousness raising groups gain a better understanding of women's oppression by bringing women together to discuss and analyze their lives, without interference as the presence of men. feminists noticed that women were isolated from each other, so that many problems in women's lives were mistaken as personal issues or as the result of conflicts between the personalities of individual men and women, rather than systematic forms of oppression.
Constitutionalism: a complex set of ideas, attitudes and patterns of behavior that expounds the principle that the authority of government derives from and is limited by a body of fundamental law. Constitutionalism of the United Sates is defined more as a complex of ideas, attitudes, and patterns of behavior elaborating the principle that the authority of government derives from the people, and is limited by a body of fundamental law. These ideas, attitudes and patterns of behavior derive from a dynamic political and historical process, rather than from a static body of thought, that emerged in the 18th century. A political organization is constitutional to the extent that it contains institutionalized mechanisms of power control for the protection of the interests and liberties of citizens, including those that may be in the minority.
Constitutionalism describes a complex concept imbedded in historical experience, which subjects the officials who exercise governmental powers to the limitations of a higher law. Constitutionalism proclaims the desirability of the rule of law as opposed to rule by the arbitrary judgment or mere fiat of public officials. Throughout the literature dealing with modern public law and the foundations of statecraft the central element of the concept of constitutionalism is that in political society, government officials are not free to do anything they please in any manner they choose. They are bound to observe both the limitations on power and the procedures which are set out in the supreme, constitutional law of the community. Therefore, the touchstone of constitutionalism is the concept of a government limited by a higher law.—David Fellman, Constitutional scholar
Contradictions: inner contradictions: critical failings: Marx' definitive phrase for capitalism, which will lead to its downfall, as he saw it, just as slave society and feudalism fell. Marx pointed to one of the inner contradictions as the "gravedigger of capitalism," the capitalist (owner) class gave birth the working class to produce commodities and profits for itself: the owner class. Owners do not pay the full value to workers for what they produce. The rest is surplus value: the profit of the capitalist, as the unpaid labor of the working class. Due to constant competition, capitalists are forced to drive down the wages of the working class to increase their profits. This creates conflict between the classes and gives rise to the development of class-consciousness among workers.
Through trade union action and other struggles, the working class becomes conscious of itself as an exploited class. In the view of classical Marxism, the struggles of the working class against the attacks of the capitalist class lead workers to struggle to establish its own collective control of productionthe basis of a socialist society. Marx believed that capitalism will always lead to extremes of monopoly and poverty, yet the fewer the restrictions on the free market, e.g. from the state and trade unions, the sooner it finds itself in crisis.
Cooperation: the process of working and living together accomplished by both intentional and unintentional agents. In its simplest form it involves things working in harmony, side by side, while in its more complicated forms, it can involve something as complex as the inner workings of a human being or the social patterns of a nation. It is the alternative to working separately in competition, though one has to cooperate with the market force that is competition. Cooperation is accomplished by computer networks, which can handle shared resources simultaneously, while sharing processor time.
Cooperative: co-op: a business organization owned and operated by a group of individuals for their mutual benefit. Cooperatives are defined by the International Co-operative Alliance's Statement on the Co-operative Identity as—Autonomous associations of persons united voluntarily to meet their common economic, social and cultural needs and aspirations through jointly owned and democratically controlled enterprises. A cooperative may also be defined as a business owned and controlled equally by the people who use its services or by the people who work there. Cooperative enterprises are the focus of study in the field of cooperative economics.
Cooperation dates back as far as human beings have been organizing for mutual benefit. Tribes were organized as cooperative structures, allocating jobs and resources among each other, only trading with the external communities. Post-industrial Europe is home to the first co-operatives from an industrial context. Robert Owen (1771 - 1858) was a social reformer in Scotland and a pioneer of the cooperative movement.
In 1761, the Fenwick Weavers' Society formed in Scotland to sell discounted oatmeal to local workers. Its services expanded to include assistance with savings and loans, emigration and education. In 1810, Welsh social reformer Robert Owen, from Newtown in mid-Wales and his partners purchased New Lanark mill from Owen's father-in-law David Dale and proceeded to introduce better labor standards including discounted retail shops where profits were passed on to his employees. Owen left New Lanark to pursue other forms of co-operative organization and develop co-op ideas through writing and lecture. Co-operative communities were set up in Glasgow, Indiana and Hampshire, although ultimately unsuccessful. In 1828, William King set up a newspaper, The Cooperator, to promote Owen's thinking, having already set up a co-operative store in Brighton.
The Rochdale Society of Equitable Pioneers, founded in 1844, is usually considered the first successful co-operative enterprise, used as a model for modern co-ops, following the Rochdale principles. A group of 28 weavers and other artisans in Rochdale, England set up the society to open their own store selling food items they could not otherwise afford. Within ten years there were over 1,000 co-operative societies in the United Kingdom. Other events such as the founding of a friendly society by the Tolpuddle Martyrs in 1832 were key occasions in the creation of organized labor and consumer movements.
Corporate welfare: a critical term that describes a government's transfer of money as grants, tax breaks, or other special favorable treatment to corporations or selected corporations. The term juxtaposes corporate subsidies and welfare payments to the poor, which asserts that corporations are much less needy of such treatment than the poor. The Canadian New Democratic Party picked up the term as a major theme in its 1972 federal election campaign; renowned critic of corporate welfare, Ralph Nader is credited with conceiving the term.
Subsidies that are excessive, unfair, inefficient and/or bought by lobbying are often called corporate welfare. The label of corporate welfare is a critical evaluation of a project that is pushed forth as a benefit the general welfare that spend a disproportionate funds on large corporations, which is often in uncompetitive, or anti-competitive. It
has catastrophic effects upon the indigenous producers of the third world and developing countries. For instance, in the United States, agricultural subsidies are usually portrayed as helping honest, hardworking independent farmers stay afloat. However, the majority of income gained from commodity support programs actually goes to the large agribusiness corporations: ADM, ConAgra, Cargil, Tyson, Monsanto and General Mills as they own a much larger piece of the production.The Cato Institute found that the U.S. Federal Government spent $92 billion on corporate welfare during fiscal year 2006. Major recipients were Boeing, Xerox, IBM, Motorola, Dow Chemical and GE. One estimate reveals that state and local governments provide $40-50 billion in annual economic development incentives, which many critics characterize as corporate welfare.
Corporatism: corporativism: a system of economic, political, or social organization that views a community as a body based upon 1) an organic social solidarity and functional distinction and 2) roles amongst individuals. The term corporatism is from corpus: L. body. Formal corporatist models are based on the contract of corporate groups, such as agricultural, business, ethnic, labor, military, patronage, scientific, or religious affiliations, into a collective body.
One of the more prominent forms of corporatism is economic tripartism, which involves negotiations between business, labor and state interest groups to set economic policy. In contemporary usage, corporatism is often used as a critical term against the domination of politics by the interests of business corporations (corporatocracy) based on the inaccurate interpretation of the idea of corporate in corporatism as referring to business corporations.
Corporatism is related to the sociological concept of structural functionalism. Corporate social interaction is common within kinship groups such as families, clans and ethnic affinities. Aside from humans, certain animal species are known to exhibit strong corporate social organization, such as penguins. In nature, cells in organisms are recognized as involving corporate organization and interaction. Corporatist views of community and social interaction are common in many major world religions such as Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism and Confucianism. Corporatism, as forms of neo-corporatism, which are varying degrees of so-called corporate socialism (advisedly), has been utilized by many ideologies across the political spectrum. The ideological forms include: absolutism, capitalism, conservatism, fascism, liberalism, progressivism, reactionism, social democracy, socialism and syndicalism.
Countercyclical spending: smoothing out fluctuations in the business cycle, for example 1) raising taxes to cool the economy and prevent inflation when there is abundant demand-side growth and 2) engaging in deficit spending on labor-intensive infrastructure projects to stimulate employment and stabilize wages during economic downturns.
In contrast, classical economics argues that when there are budget surpluses, taxes should be cut and spending cut or, less likely, increase taxes during economic downturns. Keynesian economics add to profits and incomes during boom cycles by tax cuts and removing income and profits from the economy through cuts in spending and/ or increased taxes during downturns. Some economists contend that this practice tends to exacerbate the negative effects of the business cycle.
Critical realism: as a part of the philosophy of perception, critical realism states that 1) some of our sense-data, e.g. those of primary qualities, accurately represent external objects, properties and events, while 2) other of our sense-data, for example the secondary qualities and perceptual illusions, do not accurately represent any external objects, properties and/or events. Critical realism refers to any position that maintains that there exists an objectively knowable, mind-independent reality, whilst acknowledging the roles of perception and cognition.
Economists as critical realists claim that the aim of economic theory is to provide explanations in terms of hidden generative structures. This position combines transcendental realism with a critique of mainstream economics. CR argues that mainstream economics 1) relies too much on deductivist methodology, 2) embraces, uncritically, formalism and 3) believes in strong conditional predictions in economics despite repeated failures. Mainstream economists study the empirical world, which is incompatible with the underlying ontology of economic regularities. The mainstream view limits reality because empirical realists presume that the objects of inquiry are solely empirical regularities, which are objects and events that are experienced.
It views the domain of real causal mechanisms as the appropriate object of economic science. Whereas, the positivist view is that the reality is exhausted in empirical: experienced reality, alone. Critical realism argues that economics must embrace a social ontology to include the causes of economic phenomena.
Crony capitalism: a pejorative term that describes a capitalist economy in which success in business depends on close relationships between the owners and government officials. It may be take the form of favoritism in the issuance of legal permits, government grants, tax breaks, et al. It occurs when political cronyism spills over into the business world and self-serving friendships or family ties between owners and government influence the economy and society to the extent that it corrupts public-serving economic and political ideals.
In its basic form, crony capitalism consists of collusion among market players. While firms pose a token competition against each other, they present a unified front as a trade association, industry trade group, or cartel to the government and, thus, request subsidies or aid. Newcomers to a market may find it difficult to get loans or acquire shelf space to sell their product. In tech fields, they may be accused of infringing on patents that the established competitors never invoke against each other. Distribution networks will refuse to aid the entrant.
Some competitors will crack the crony system when the legal barriers are weak and when the old guard has become inefficient and fails to meet the needs of the market. Some of these competitors may join with the networks to help deter other new competitors. The Keiretsu of postwar Japan was an example of such an arrangement, as are the powerful families that control much of the investment in Latin America.
Cultural action is a dramatic unity of denunciation and annunciation.
Cultural action considers education and pedagogy as a cultural activity in the process of liberation from the bondage of oppression: coercion that indoctrinates and trains people to act mechanically, to mimic the machines of production, vending, consumption and advertising. Freire emphasizes literacy as the tool for understanding and the capacity for critical thinking. Cultural action includes many types of activities. People worldwide are engaged in cultural action by organizing projects, leading community activities, creating new approaches to cultural issues and making imaginative new uses of community cultural resources. They may engage with different issues, work with different kinds and levels of support and opposition and envision the future differently, but it is all cultural action
Cultural economics: 1. a branch of economics that studies the relation of culture to economic outcomes. Culture here is defined by shared beliefs and preferences of respective groups. Programmatic issues include whether and how much culture matters as to economic outcomes and what its relation is to institutions. 2. the author Howard Richards advocates a paradigm shift that will engender a world in which decisions are made according to a basic pragmatism: whether they will contribute to meeting universal human and ecological needs. The programs that it implements for greater social justice are evaluated on the basis of whether they contribute to building a cultural economy, which operates on new rules e.g., 1) production for use, 2) stewardship of property, 3) democratic control of resources and 4) social bonds, while preserving those elements of liberal ethics that are the genuine ethical advances, e.g., freedom. The principles of freedom, property and honoring contracts are not just the way things are, but rather a cultural legacy, which become renegotiated, reconstructed and improved, hence through cultural economics. More about it is within the description, Cultural economics: a new paradigm.
Deindustrialization: the decline in manufacturing in a number of countries, which means the flight of jobs out of cities. Used to describe the decline of Detroit, one analyst argues that deindustrialization explains the loss of jobs in the city. Companies are shifting production to areas with a lower level of wages, safety, employment and pension security. In addition, the constant, frequent and accelerating advances in mass production technology is displacing more manufacturing jobs.
The book The African American Experience in Cyberspace explains that jobs left cities the moment African Americans arrived. As African Americans began to populate the inner cities, industrial production moved to rural areas-leaving workers behind. The book explains that technology replaced labor and jobs fled to other regions of the country and to third-world countries. The auto-industry in Detroit is the prime example of what deindustrialization does to a region and its people. Today, the region has much unemployment, high rates of poverty and visible racial isolation. When industry was booming and the region was flush with factories, the economy benefited the people and workers. Now, the factories are abandoned and more than one third of the residents live below the poverty line.
Deindustrialization and demographic shifts: dislocation: The U.S. population has doubled since the 1950s, adding about 150 million people. But at the same time, the population of the manufacturing cities in the northeast plunged. Detroit, Cleveland, Pittsburgh, St. Louis and Buffalo lost nearly half their population in the past fifty years. During the 1950s, the nation's twenty largest cities held nearly a fifth of the national population. Today, in 2010, this proportion has dropped to about one tenth of the population. Small and mid-sized cities of the manufacturing belt met similar fates. Cumberland, Maryland declined from a population of 39,483 in the 1940s to 20,915 in 2005.
As Americans migrated away from the manufacturing centers, they formed sprawling suburbs. Many former small cities such as Phoenix, Arizona have had enormous growth in the last fifty years. In on year, 2005, Phoenix increased by 43,000 people, more than any other city in the US., though Phoenix in the 1950s ranked just 99th and a population of 107,000. In 2005, the population has grown to 1.5 million, ranking as the fifth largest city in the United States.
Dialectic: controversy: point counterpoint: in classical philosophy, the exchange of arguments and counter-arguments respectively advocating propositions as theses and counter-propositions as antitheses. The outcome of the exercise might not be the refutation of one of the relevant points of view, but a synthesis or combination of the opposing assertions, or at least a qualitative transformation in the direction of the dialogue.
In the Middle Ages, dialectics as logic was one of the three original liberal arts (the trivium) along with rhetoric and grammar. In ancient and medieval times, both rhetoric and dialectic were understood as persuasion through dialogue. The aim of the dialectical method, often known as dialectic or dialectics resolves disagreement through rational discussion and the search for truth. The Socratic method shows that a given hypothesis, with other admissions, leads to a contradiction, thus, forcing the withdrawal of the hypothesis as a candidate for truth as a reductio ad absurdum. Another way to resolve a disagreement is to deny some assumption of both the contending thesis and antithesis, thereby moving to a third thesis: the sublation. However, the rejection of the participant's assumptions can be resisted, which might generate a second layer of controversy.
Dialectical materialism: the philosophical basis of Marxism, though a term that Marx never used. It refers to the notion that Marxism is a synthesis of philosophical dialectics and materialism. It complements the historical materialism conception of history, the name given to Marx' methodology in the study of society, economics and history. Two claims that Marx often made define dialectical materialism:
- he revived Hegel's dialectics and
- the history of all previous society is that of class
struggles (Communist Manifesto, 1848). Dialectical materialism holds
- the belief that history is the product of class struggle and
- Hegel's principle of philosophy of history that is the development of the thesis into its antithesis, or contradiction.
Hegel's dialectics aim at explaining the growth and development of human history. He held that truth was the product of history and passed through various moments, including the moment of error or negativity, as part of the progress of truth. Marx' dialectical materialism considers, against Hegel's idealism, that history is not the product of the spirit (geist or zeitgeist: spirit of the time). Rather, history is the effect of the material class struggle in society. Thus, theory has its roots in the materiality of social existence. However, dialectical materialism refers also to diamat (abbreviation of dialectical materialism), imposed by Stalin upon the Comintern and upon communist states.
Stalin's codification of diamat: After his takeover in 1931, Stalin settled the issue of the debate between dialecticians and mechanists by publishing a decree, which identified dialectical materialism as pertaining solely to Marxism-Leninism. Stalin then codified it in Dialectical and Historical Materialism  by listing the laws of dialectics, which are the basis of each discipline, above all the science of history and which guarantees their conformity to the proletarian conception of the world. Thus, Stalin imposed diamat upon most communist parties affiliated to the Third International; diamat became the official philosophy of Stalinism and, thus, almost the status of a state religion.
Discourse: 1. dialog and debate as a discussion between two or more willing participants. 2. a tool of semantics and discourse analysis. In semantics, a discourse is a linguistic unit composed of several sentences, e.g., conversation, argument, or speeches. Studies about discourse have roots in theoretical traditions such as modernism and feminism that investigate the relations between language, structure and agency. Plato was known for his claim that any problem will resolve through logical discourse. The parameters of speech, dialog and communication, in general, that aptly comprise discourse is still a subject of debate. Discourse includes the use of spoken, written and signed language, multi-modal forms of communication and is open to non-fictional and verbal materials. Challenges to understanding language and discourse are apparent, practical and progressive.
In the social sciences, a discourse is an institutionalized way of thinking, a social boundary defining what can be said about a specific topic. As one scholar describes it, discourse is the limits of acceptable speech or possible truth. Discourse affects our views on all things due to its inevitable and ubiquitous nature. For example, two distinct discourses about various guerrilla movements describe themone as freedom fighters andthe other as terrorists. The chosen discourse brings with it the vocabulary, expression and perhaps the style needed to communicate. Discourse has a close link to different theories of power and state, at least as long as the defining of discourses is viewed to mean the defining of reality.
Dumont, Louis: (1911-1998), anthropologist, professor at Oxford University during the 1950s, and director at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) in Paris. A specialist on the cultures and societies of India, Dumont studied Western social philosophy and ideologies. His works include Homo Hierarchicus: Essai sur le système des castes (1966), From Mandeville to Marx: The Genesis and Triumph of Economic Ideology (1977) and Essais sur l'individualisme: Une perspective anthropologique sur l'idéologie moderne (1983), in which he contrasts holism with individualism. His studies about Indian society paved the way for the development of the culturological approach to the study to Indian society, showing its kinship with the indological approach.
Ecological rights: Public Trust is an ancient legal doctrine that protects our waters, coasts and all ecosystems that depend upon them. It grants everyone the right of access to our coastlines, beaches and rivers. It places important duties on government at all levels, as trustee of the trust lands, to protect those lands in perpetuity for all. The Environmental Law Foundation explores legal paths to preserve, protect and expand the public trust for generations. Public trust resorts to the origins of democratic government and its seminal idea that within the public lies the true power and future of a society, as the trust the public places in its officials must be respected.
Economic growth: market growth: the increase in value and/or quantity of the goods and services produced by an economy. The standard measurement of it is the rate of increase in real gross domestic product: GDP. Growth is calculated in real terms as inflation-adjusted terms, in order to eliminate the net effect of inflation on the price of the goods and services produced. Economic growth as a theory refers to growth of the potential output as economic production at full employment, which is caused by growth in aggregate demand as the observed output. Economic growth is measured as the annual change of GDP, a measure which has advantages and drawbacks.
The real GDP per capita of an economy is used as an indicator of the average standard of living of individuals in that country. Therefore, economic growth is often seen as indicating an increase in the average standard of living. The four major critical arguments against economic growth include its
- negative effect on the quality of life. Much that affects the quality of life, such as the environment, is not traded or measured in the market, thus quality of life factors may lose value when growth occurs
- creation of false needs by industry advertising, which leads consumers to develop new tastes and preferences, so that growth will occur. Advertising creates wants, which makes consumers become servants to the economy, instead of the boss of it
- depletion nonrenewable resources faster than no-growth and
- increase of the unequal distribution of income; the gap grows wider between the richest and the poorest people.
Supporters argue that global income inequality is, in fact, diminishing and that the rapid reduction in global poverty is, in large part, due to economic growth, according to World Bank. Conversely, decline in poverty has been the slowest where growth performance has been the worst (in Africa). Happiness increases with a higher GDP/capita, at least below and around $15,000 per person.
Many earlier predictions of resource depletion, such as Thomas Malthus' 1798 predictions about this inevitable growth causing continuous famines in Europe The Population Bomb (1968), Limits to Growth (1972) and the Simon-Ehrlich Wager (1980) have proven false. One reason is that advancements in technology and science have allowed unavailable resources to be utilized. The book The Improving State of the World argues that the state of humanity is rapidly improving. However, other scholars report that the narrow view of economic growth, combined with globalization, is creating a scenario where we could see a systemic collapse of Earth's natural resources.
The Austrian School of Economics: ASE argues that growth, as the creation and acquisition of more goods and services, is dependent upon the relative desires of the individual. Someone may favor spending more leisure time as preferable to acquiring more goods and services. ASE claim that growth implies the need for central planning within an economy. To the ASE, such an idea is antithetical to a free market economy without the presence of governmental intervention. Thus, ASE believes that individuals should determine how much growth they want.
Growth in economic activity requires some growth in consumption of resources. It is impossible to produce goods without resource and energy inputs. It is impossible to have the economy running without the further input of energy to transport people and goods. Steady growth is, by its nature, an exponential function. A quantity that grows according to an exponential function shows a doubling in size at a regular time interval, as the doubling time. If the rate of consumption of a nonrenewable resource grows steadily, e.g., at 5% per year, then that rate will double, regularly. At 5% growth per year, in roughly 14 years, the consumption rate will have doubled; after another 14 years, the rate will have quadrupled. After a century of 5% annual growth, the resource will be consumed at a rate 130 times the original rate.
There are additional concerns about the environmental and ecological effects of economic growth, relating to growth in mining, forestry, agriculture and industry. Many researchers sense that sustained environmental effects can have an effect on the entire ecosystem. They claim the accumulated effects on the ecosystem put a theoretical limit upon growth. Some draw on archaeology to cite examples of cultures they claim have disappeared because they grew beyond the ability of their ecosystems to support them. The projection is that the limits to growth will eventually make the growth of resource consumption impossible. Others more optimistic believe that, although localized environmental effects may occur, large scale ecological effects are minor. The optimists claim that if these global-scale ecological effects exist, human ingenuity will find ways of adapting to them.
The rate or type of economic growth may have important consequences for the environmentthe climate and the natural capital of ecologies. Concerns about possible negative effects of growth on the environment and society led some to advocate lower levels of growth, from which comes the idea of uneconomic growth. The Green Party argues that economies are part of a global society and a global ecology and, due to this fact, cannot outstrip their natural growth without damaging both. Canadian scientist David Suzuki stated in the 1990s that ecologies can only sustain typically about 1.5-3% new growth per year and, thus, any requirement for greater returns from agriculture or forestry will necessarily cannibalize the natural capital of soil or forest. Some think this argument can be applied even to more developed economies.
Meanwhile, the mainstream economists argue that economies are driven by new technology and ongoing improvements in efficiency. For example, we have faster computers today than a year ago, but not necessarily computers that require more natural resources to build them. In addition, physical limits may be very large if considering all the minerals in the planet Earth or all possible resources from space colonization, such as solar power satellites, asteroid mining, or a Dyson sphere. The book, Mining the Sky: untold Riches from the Asteroids, Comets and Planets is an example of such arguments. However, depletion and declining production from old resources may sometimes occur before new resources are ready to replace them. This is, in part, the logical basis for the fact of the point of a peak in oil production with a precipitous decline soon after it.