Freedom’s Just another Word and Casino Capitalism
Freedom’s Just another Word is an article that looks keenly at the aspect of the dominance of thought. The author asserts that a conceptual apparatus that appeals to the intuitions instincts values and desires of people determines the dominance of any form of thought, which means that the conceptual apparatus must be present for thought to make sense. The conceptual apparatus must also appeal to the social world that individuals occupy. However, when the conceptual apparatus becomes successful, people take its meaning for granted. As the author notes, the establishment of the neoliberalism thought became dominant because of the application of the conceptual apparatus touching on political ideals of human dignity and individual freedom as the most essential values of civilization (Harvey, 2005).
The author asserts that issues of dignity and individual freedom are appealing and weighty. These issues are the ones that contributed to the dissident movements that were seen in the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe before the end of the cold war as well as the student movements all over the world in 1968. All these movements arose due to the quest for different forms of freedoms. The author asserts that the aspect of freedom has been in the U.S tradition for a very long time and has had a role to play in recent events in and out of the U.S.A, such as the 9/11 attacks the war against Iraq started by the Bush administration (Harvey, 2005).
The United States’ stance on the other countries of the world has long been dominated by the notion that individual freedoms are assured by the freedom of the market and trade. It is an aspect of neoliberal thought. The author calls the U.S a neoliberal state for the fact that its mission in Iraq was to enable conditions that would ensure it accumulates profitable capital. The author asserts that neoliberalism restores issues of capitalistic power. For neoliberal projects to be developed, the only way was to build the right mix of states, market, and democratic institutions such as the UN, WB, and IMF that would create peace and stability. Even the creation of class power is made out of issues of privileges of ownership and management that are considered aspects of freedom. However, the author finds this to be an aspect of capitalistic activities (Harvey, 2005).
Casino Capitalism is an article that looks at the financial system of the western society as a resemblance to a large casino. The author considers this financial system to be so, in the sense that the western financial system involves the handling of unimaginable large sums of money. All these remind the games where chain-smoking men fix their eyes on computer screens and flicker with changing prices. Just like in a casino, the western world that is full of money offers the players different choices of games. Unlike the roulette, poker or black jack, the foreign exchange market and the variations characterize the western financial system. The main difference between a casino and the financial system is that a casino affects only those in the game, while the financial system affects all people. A currency change affects everyone ranging from farmers to exporters (Sinn, 2010).
The financial casino, as the author calls the western financial system, has both good and bad luck. The vulnerability of bad luck is unequal to various players who range from individuals, large enterprises, and countries. Even though politicians pretend that they can control the pressures of the system, they cannot because of the uncertainty that rules the financial world. The international political economy faces the interconnected debt problem in the developing nations, the slow growth of world economy, the uncertainty of oil prices, and the instability of the banking system. All these problems started in 1973 (Sinn, 2010).
The author states that the picture of the international financial system has brought important questions regarding the weakening of states and the strengthening of markets, which is an aspect of the international world order. The author asserts that the formation of the international order brought about the belief that a dominant state would be needed to run the order effectively. This is how the U.S.A became a super power.
Freedom’s Just another Word and Casino Capitalism are articles that investigate the aspect of capitalism in the world. The authors of the two articles look at the world at different angles but arrive at the same conclusion. While the Freedom’s Just another Word looks at the international order in terms of issues of freedom, Casino Capitalism looks at the world order in terms of a financial system. As the author of the Freedom’s Just another Word explains, freedom only exists when conceptual frameworks are brought into play. It brings importance questions. Is there anything like freedom in the world? Are other people allowed to use their freedoms over others? Does the neoliberal regime provide freedoms or is it a way of controlling such freedoms? The author of Casino Capitalism has clearly shown that the whole world is affected by the actions of certain forces that are involved in the western financial system. Important questions arise from this article. Is the current world order a manifestation of weaker states or a stronger economy? Can the international political economy be controlled? Are all problems of international political economy tied to the uncertainties in the financial system?
The point of agreement for the two authors is that the world order is controlled and influenced by particular forces. For the author of Freedom’s Just another Word, the world is controlled by neoliberal thought of freedoms. For the author of Casino capitalism, the world is controlled by the western financial system that is characterized by uncertainties. However, all these factors bring about a capitalistic world.