File spoon-archives/lyotard.archive/lyotard_2001/lyotard.0108, message 87

Date: Thu, 23 Aug 2001 13:07:15 -0100
Subject: Empire and the "Facts"


In "Le Differend", Lyotard taught us about the treachery of words, the
difficulty of justice, the immanence of obligation, the exposure of
differends, and the need for remedies.

In  comments on the text of "Empire", and in pursuit of definitions, we have
increased our understanding of the what the authors had in mind.

The nature and membership of a global community N&H call "Multitude" is
not revealed, but I think we all agree that N&H have produced a more
comprehensive historic-theoretic concept of capital, labor and global
communications than has appeared in other books.

Apparently the authors believe that democratic empowerment of the multitude
could lead to significant remedy of present exploitation, inequalities,
rights abuse etc.

In our comments to date, there seems to be agreement that more factual data
is needed to clarifiy the concepts presented.

Here are thoughts about some of the facts that are needed:

1) Investment - Empire refers to Capital flows - Within each of  G-8
Nations, How much of its capital is currently owned by the other seven? And,
conversely, how much capital of the other seven does that Nation own?

2) Transnational Corporations - Identification of  G-8 Invesment (above)
by Transnational Corporation

3) International Agencies - Capital flows through World Bank, and other
public agency international banks.
- Expenditure of  G-8 citizen's tax dollars by IMF
- Dollar value of major cases brought before WTO

4) Arms, Illegal Drugs and Oil  - Does WTO have any responsibility for
related to these items, or for disputes re: capital flows that maintain
(guess)  U.S. troops abroad?

5) Currency Exchange - Is reform needed?

6) Impact on World Peace - What capital flows support current wars?

7) International Spies and Secrecy  - Are they necessary?

8) Human Rights - Which nations are the worst abusers of human rights?
Which Transnationals?

A lot of this information is available on the Internet, some for free, but
we need professionals, and professional economists, reporters, free lancers
never seem to conduct research on these matters.

The best investigative reporting I've seen lately is about Marc Rich, an
internatonal capitalist operator and exploiter par excellence.  See Maureen
Orth's article in the June 2001 issue of Vanity Fair.



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