BE STILL AND KNOW LIFE-VALUE ONTO-AXIOLOGY – A collection of essays by Prof. John McMurtry | globalresearch.ca

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Table of Contents

  • I. THE RIGHTS OF THE “HUMAN” OVER THE “NON-HUMAN”: THE UNDECLARED WORLD WAR OF HUMAN RIGHTS VERSUS CORPORATE RIGHTS
    • Right to Life: From Right-Wing Slogan to Life-Grounded Comprehension
    • Intrinsic Life Worth and Humanity’s Universal Being
    • Projecting Personhood onto the Non-Human to Deprive the Human
    • The Life-Value Onto-Ethic in Contrast
  • II. FINDING THE LOST LIFE-VALUE GROUND AND MEASURE: THE COMMON LIFE INTEREST OF LEGITIMATE RIGHTS AND SOCIAL JUSTICE
    • Capabilities: Regrounding Amartya Sen and Martha Nussbaum in Life Need and Value
    • Individual Differences and the Life-Value Criterion and Measure of Legitimate Rights
    • Thinking Past the Life-Blind Paradigms
    • The Universal Human Life Necessities
    • Universal Life Needs the Basis of All Legitimate Rights
  • III. GROWING THE LIFE GOODS BASE: BEYOND MONEY, IDEOLOGY AND PRODUCTIVE FORCES
    • Why Marx Does not Solve the Problem
    • Predictable Downfall of Human and Planetary Life Until Life-Value Turn
    • From Moral and Legal Philosophy to Marxian Revolution: The Missing Life-Ground
    • The Modern Blind Eye: No Life-Value Standard to Steer Productive Development
    • The First Requirement of Social Justice: Re-Grounding in Universal Human Life Goods
    • Recognising the Human Vocation Above All
    • Right of Access to Universal Life Goods: The Missing Argument
  • IV. THE UNIVERSAL HUMAN LIFE NECESSITIES: THE LIFE GROUND OF ECONOMICS AND HUMAN RIGHTS DEFINED
    • Blocking Out Life Necessity: The Compulsion of High Theory
    • The Universal Life Needs and Goods: Explaining the Base of All Rights and Obligations
    • Beyond the Invisible Hand: Naming Humanity’s Universal Life Necessities and Goods
    • How to Test the Universal Life Goods and Necessities for Validity
    • Sufficiency and Insufficiency of Provision Recognised by Life Capacity Margins
    • Thinking Through “From Each According to Ability, To Each According to Needs”
  • V. RECOVERING THE BASES OF OUR LIVES FROM SILENCE AND OCCUPATION: THE HUMAN VOCATION, THE CIVIL COMMONS AND SOCIAL JUSTICE
    • Being Human: Why We Must Work for Our Own Life Good and Others’ at the Same Time
    • The Civil Commons: Real Economic Base and Social Correlative of the Human Vocation
    • The Corporate-Rich War on Civil Commons to Expropriate and Degrade Them for Profit
    • From Commons-Blind Theory on Both Sides of Class Division to Life-Goods Economy and Justice.
    • Regaining the Lost Bearings of Civil Commons as First Premise of Human Evolution
    • From Corporate State versus Social State to Life-Coherent Rationality
  • VI. EVOLVED CIVIL COMMONS VERSUS CORPORATE GLOBALIZATION: A PERFORMANCE EVALUATION ACROSS UNIVERSAL LIFE GOODS
    • Re-Setting to the Common Life-Ground of Our Existence
    • Economic Advance and Social Justice Both Decided by Universal Provision of Life Goods
    • Atmospheric Goods
    • Bodily Goods
    • Home and Habitat Goods
    • Environmental Integrity
    • Life-Protective Goods of Security and Healthcare
    • Cultural Life Goods
    • The Good of Human Vocation
  • VII: WHY CONTEMPORARY JUSTICE THEORY FAILS: THE MISSING COMMON INTEREST OF HUMAN RIGHTS AND REASON
    • Abstracting Away Everything that Ultimately Matters: Mapping High Theory’s Correspondence to the Life-Blind Ruling System
    • G.A. Cohen’s Egalitarian Rescue Remains Within the Ruling Alibi as First Premise
    • Economic Science and Pareto Optimum/Efficiency Unmasked in Principle
    • Rawlsian Justice as Trickle-Down Myth in Formal Costume
  • VIII. BEYOND EQUIVOCAL EQUALITY AND MASKING MYTHS: GROUNDING JUSTICE IN WHAT WE ALL NEED TO LIVE AS HUMAN
    • From Rational Plan of Life to Human Vocation: The Ultimate Moral Regrounding
    • Life-Ground Ethics Rejects a Career Plan as a Universal Good of Justice or Morality
    • Linking Life Right and Obligation at System-Wide and Historical Levels
    • The Life-Coherence Principle, Civil Commons, and the Human Vocation
  • IX. REGAINING THE REAL ECONOMY FROM THE CANCER SYSTEM: THE CHOICE SPACE FOR HUMANITY’S EVOLUTION OR DESTRUCTION
    • Evolution of Humanity by Rules of Life-Enabling Economy and Justice
    • Progressive or Regressive Meta Pattern of History?
    • The Corporate-State War Against Human Evolution
    • Recovering the Real Economy in Principle and Fact
  • X. THE SOCIAL STATE VERSUS THE CORPORATE STATE: FROM EUROPEAN FASCISM TO GLOBAL MONEY-SEQUENCE ABSOLUTISM
    • Social State Evolution versus Corporate State Growth: The Battle Lines Defined
    • From the Depression, Anti-Fascist War and Decolonisation to the Corporate Occupation
    • The Morality of Corporate Rights: No Rights Except for Private Money Sequences
    • Social Justice and Economic Integrity: The Life Code in Social Defence
  • XI. THE LIFE-AND-DEATH WAR OF RIGHTS SYSTEMS DEFINED
    • Defining the Global Corporate Mechanism in Formal Terms
    • The Age-Old Life Economy of the Civil Commons versus the Corporate-Rights System
    • Holding and Advancing the Life-Ground of Resistance: Clarifying the Civil Commons of Economic and Human Rights Around and Under Us
    • Beyond Amnesiac Despair: The Life Economy and Human Rights Base Already Won
    • The Real Private Sector is the Opposite of Global Corporate For Profit
  • XII. HUMANITY’S EVOLUTION AND THE GREAT REVERSAL: AN ANATOMY OF THE CORPORATE RIGHT COUNTER-REVOLUTION
    • Getting Our Historical Bearings in the Turning-Point Time
    • The Great Reversal
    • The Historic Choice Today
  • XIII. HISTORY’S LONG WAR FOR LIBERATION: RECLAIMING THE LIFE RIGHTS WHICH HAVE BEEN WON
    • The United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights
    • Societies’ Life Rights Against Corporate Fascism Across Borders
    • Resolving Confusions of Meaning to See the Historical Pattern Across Generational Time
    • Reclaiming and Moving Beyond the Human Life Rights That Have Already Been Won.
  • REFERENCES

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‘Overpopulation’: A Cover Story for the Money Cancer System | Prof John McMurtry

It is not “the rising tide of human numbers” simpliciter that loots, pollutes and destroys the life carrying capacities of the planet. It is what all over-populationists conveniently ignore:

(1) the much still exponentially self-multiplying tides of private money demand on the earth’s resources that drives every degenerate trend in the planet’s life carrying capacities, and

(2) its ultimate driver of limitlessly self-maximizing private profit to the top which now puts more demand on the earth’s resources by a few plutocrats than by 90% of the population .

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The true meaning of love and forgiveness – a life-value onto-axiological perspective

LK 6:27-38 Jesus said to his disciples: “To you who hear I say, love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. To the person who strikes you on one cheek, offer the other one as well, and from the person who takes your… Read More

The Primary Axiom of MY FAITH as Revealed in the Greatest Commandment FOR ALL LIFE

The Liturgy of the Word in Church today connected more dots of meaning and understanding to all life than I could have imagined. It has implications for all of us as many of us proclaim in our Constitutions to be One Nation under God and lose sight of the Primary Axiom of our Faith that has been revealed to us in our Judeo-Christian Scriptures. The epiphany which I had in church today was that the Primary Axiom of my Faith resonated very well without conflict and contradiction with the Primary Axiom of Life-Value which has become the cognitive engine of my life-grounded spiritual growth and development. And what I have grown to realize, from this life-grounded lens, is that the Word of God is in truth and in fact infallible, but where we fall short and become fallible is in the interpretation of this Word and its application to the embodied flowerings of all of our felt side of being, thoughts and actions as manifested in all of our life’s beings, becomings and doings. Read More

The sharing economy: an alternative to capitalist exploitation? by Jeff Noonan

Political consciousness of systemic social problems produces opposite responses in groups differently situated in a social hierarchy. From the standpoint of exploited and oppressed groups, the recognition that they are determined by systemic socio-economic and political forces manifests itself as (more or less developed) demands for a different social system. From the standpoint of the ruling class and its ideological supporters, recognition of the same systemic problems (or, perhaps more accurately, recognition that systemic problems have become so widely obvious that they can no longer be plausibly denied) manifests itself as creative attempts to creatively name novel elements of the unchanged system in ways that make the change sound systematically transformative. Occasionally, these opposite strategies cross one another, as when the name of what system opponents take to be an alternative and the creative naming practiced by those trying to save the existing system are the same. I propose to examine the phenomenon known as the “sharing economy” with these considerations in mind. To avoid damaging political confusion, the referent(s) of the name must be carefully examined to see a) whether system opponents and system-supporters mean the same thing by the term, and b) whether the name really does refer to an alternative social system, and, if so, whether it is likely to solve the problems its supporters believe it will.

The answer to the first question is ambiguous. There is much overlap, but not identity, in what system opponents and system supporters refer to by the term “sharing economy.” The overlap centres on the technological platforms of social media and peer-to-peer networks which open up new possibilities for identifying common interests and linking people with goods or skills to exchange. The difference concerns the extent to which these possibilities can be realised within capitalism or constitute the rudiments of an alternative to it. Thus, system opponents and system supporters do and do not mean the same thing by the sharing economy, but both are convinced that the technologies involved are crucial to its nature. The second question is not as difficult to answer, but, as we will see, there is still some ambiguity. Even in the best sense of the term, I will argue, the sharing economy cannot solve the systemic problems typical of capitalism. While “to share” is a verb widely assumed to name a universally valuable moral disposition, a more careful analysis reveals that sharing is not always completely good. Even if it were always good, I will further argue, it is not the best moral foundation for the institutional structure of a democratic life-economy alternative to capitalism. While sharing and the technologies that allow it to occur beyond the spatial and temporal confines of local communities can be an important element within a democratic life-economy, there is no technological fix to the problems of global capitalism, and solution to the problem of exploitation, oppression and alienation demand an end to the structure of material dependence of life on commodity markets that sharing on its own cannot guarantee.

I will develop this argument in three steps. In the first, I will attempt to bring some clarity to the idea of “sharing economy,” highlight what system opponents and supporters see in it, and uncover the hidden moral ambiguity at the heart of sharing as a social practice. In the second, I will focus on the way in which ‘sharing economy” is understood by capitalist system supporters, exposing the ideological function of “sharing” in this use and the capitalist truth behind the ideology. In the third I will return to the problem of sharing as the moral foundation of an alternative economy, and argue that alone it cannot satisfy the key conditions an alternative would have to satisfy to prove itself morally and economically superior to capitalism. Instead, the moral foundation of a democratic life-economy is universal need-satisfaction and its institutional infrastructure is not peer-to-peer networks but democratically governed public institutions that ensure universal provision of natural and social life-requirements to each and all.

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Life Value and Social Justice

Introduction

Since its publication in 1971, John Rawls’ A Theory of Justice has defined the terrain of political philosophical debate concerning the principles, scope, and material implications of social justice. Social justice for Rawls concerns the principles that govern the operation of major social institutions. Major social institutions structure the lives of citizens by regulating access to the resources and opportunities that the formulation and realization of human projects require. Rawls’ theory of social justice regards major institutions as just when they distribute what he calls “primary goods” in a manner that he regards as egalitarian. Hence, the subsequent social justice debate has been shaped by and large as a debate about the meaning and implications of egalitarianism. While on the surface a debate about egalitarianism as a distributional principle seems to uncover the core problem of social justice — how much of what everyone should get as a matter of right — the entire history of the debate has been conducted in abstraction from what matters most to people’s lives. It is as a corrective to such abstractions that the life-value approach to social justice has been developed…

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