We publish here a recording of Fred Weston, editor of www.marxist.com, who spoke at the LSE Marxist society about the new book “Capital in the 21st Century” by the French academic Thomas Piketty. Fred provided a Marxist analysis of the rising inequality we see in society today, explaining the inherent contradictions within capitalism that lead to growing profits and accumulation of wealth at one end, and growing misery and poverty at the other.
On 3rd June the LSE Marxists had the first meeting of the LSE Marxist Society. This also marked the last event of the London Marxist Societies this academic year. The meeting was held in order to analyse, from a Marxist perspective, the work of Thomas Piketty, author of Capital in the 21st Century, who has been all the rage recently and is coming to speak at LSE later this month.
Fred Weston, editor of www.marxist.com introduced the topic, speaking about how Piketty’s book is simply giving in-depth statistical evidence for something we’ve known for a long time: that the accumulation of capital leads to the relative impoverishment of the working class, the corruption of democracy, and so on. Piketty’s prescription is nothing new: utopian reformism, which functions to maintain capitalism – “let’s just convince the capitalists that they need to give some of their wealth to the workers!”.
The discussion was overwhelmingly positive, either adding on to Fred’s analysis or discussing what we can do to fight capitalism and offer a genuine alternative. Fred’s response to the discussion at the end was an impressive answer to all the questions and points raised. The audio files below are both Fred’s introduction to the discussion and his summing up afterwards.