The World is Flat 3.0

MIT / Political Science

By Thomas Friedman

Lecture Description

Pulitzer Prize winning New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman speaks on the MIT campus to discuss the 2007 update to his bestseller The World is Flat. He also provides a preview of his latest book, Hot, Flat, and Crowded.


The place of the Communist Manifesto in the elaboration of the Marxian idea of the post-Capital

In the text that follows we argue that the basic Marxian ideas concerning the type of society supposed to follow the demise of capitalism are contained in the Manifesto in a condensed form.

Accordingly, the first section offers an outline of what type of society the Manifesto envisages for the future as well as the conditions necessary for its appearance while the second section relates these ideas to Marx’s other texts.

In this paper post-capitalist society signifies what Marx calls a “Society of free and associated producers” “” also, indifferently, “communism” or “socialism”[1] “” based on the “associated mode of production.” This “union of free individuals,” the crowning point of the self-emancipation of the immediate producers, where individuals are subject neither to personal dependence, as in pre-capitalism, nor to material dependence, as in commodity-capitalist society, excludes, by definition, state, private ownership of the conditions of production, commodity production and wage labour. The Manifesto indicates, in a condensed and concise fashion, the essential elements of the envisaged new society as well as the objective and the subjective conditions of its realization.

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“The best political leader in Europe (and the world)”


State Capitalism in Britain

James Heartfield, Mute magazine
Despite the State being the main investor in the UK’s national economy, the official rhetoric of private sector productivity is alive and well. James Heartfield takes a look at Labour’s failed strategy of privatising public services and the rise of ‘corporate welfare’

Two very contradictory stories about British capitalism are told today. The first is that the State is eating up more and more of the private sector. The sudden increase of public shares in the major banks and the falling of the railways into receivership is evidence of a return to the nationalisations of the 1970s. Some on the left even take heart from this, and urge the government to go the whole way and nationalise the banks. The Sunday Times runs stories warning of ‘Soviet Britain’, to show that in many towns in Britain (and especially in Scotland and Northern Ireland) state spending is a majority of output.

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Science reinvents the economy: An economy in a computer

Magazine issue 2711. New Scientist

More: Can science reinvent the economy?

Can we pack an entire economy, with all its complex human and political interactions, into a computer? Physicist Dirk Helbing of ETH thinks so – as long as we’re bold enough in going about it.

He points out that financial systems aren’t the only monsters we’ve let out of the box. How traffic flows in and around huge cities simply cannot be grasped by mathematical analysis, but computer models let millions of virtual vehicles interact on realistic road patterns – and often discover potential problems before they occur in reality.

The complexity of today’s economy, Helbing suggests, demands a similar approach. “We’re not currently using the best capabilities of science,” he says. “We need to bring together scientists from different fields and put together tools that can be used as a kind of wind tunnel for testing out social and economic policies.”

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