Neoliberal globalisation in historical context
in Imperialism and the development myth
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The creation at one pole of the labour process of simple processes (whether carried out by humans or machines) requires, at the other pole, the design, development, control, maintenance and management of these same processes. On the one side, we have ordinary, bulk processes, and on the other, sophisticated labour. The extent to which the ordinary bulk process will be carried out by humans or machine is determined by competition between the two – something greatly affected by the price of labour. That competition, in final analysis, is really competition between ordinary labour and the sophisticated labour that brings machines into being. In the post-war period Third World labour tended to be relatively excluded from the global labour process as the imperialist countries invested in semi-automated production. In the ‘neoliberal’ period the reverse tendency occurred as ‘hyper-globalisation’ sought to super-exploit abundant cheap labour. Over the last several years, the world economy has again started to reset as the super-abundant global cheap labour supply in China, Eastern Europe and elsewhere started to dry up. What seems likely to determine the extent and contours of globalisation into the future is not technology. Both tendencies require technology, though in different areas. Where imperialist states and corporations choose to invest is what determines what types of technology will be developed.

Imperialism and the development myth

How rich countries dominate in the twenty-first century


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