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The limits of capitalism: Challenging the fetishism of labour and money

Capital is nothing more than value that must be valorized, which is to say augmented. Value empirically takes the form of money and in that sense its valorization can be illustrated in Marx’s famous formula M–C–M’ [M prime], that is money–commodity–more money. We can call this an end-in-itself motion because the same thing is at the beginning and the end of this endless augmentation loop: money is turned into more money. Value (in the form of money) therefore again and again refers to itself alone and the sole objective of this movement is the constant accumulation of surplus value. By its own internal logic, this end-in-itself motion does not recognize any limits. Because of its purely abstract-quantitative nature, it must, in principle, continue endlessly. That is the basis for the incessant drive for growth in capitalist society—which, as we all know, is destroying the basis of human existence on earth.

Norbert Trenkle

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