How did we invent fire with no profit incentive???

Don’t tell them “human nature” people about primitive communism. They won’t survive.

quality of life for much of that time frame was horrible. it’s safe to say that living in prehistoric times is not desirable.

Obviously, but how could capitalism be a part of human nature if we spent so much time not organized in that way?

Hunter gatherers had better health than most agrarian people, based on studies of bones at least. Once farming kicked off the average person was smaller, weaker, and on average had a shorter lifespan. That said, plentiful food and recent health reforms in the west and China have brought the average person back up to that pre-agrarian level in terms of health outcomes. Modern hunter gatherers also tend to have a rich culture and history that they prefer to ours, and many groups report widespread psychological stress when adapting to industrial society.

Lemme guess, physical activity?

Diet, actually. The average hunter gatherer spends about 4hrs per day on finding food/labor. But it only works in environments where the local human footprint is low enough.

I imagine it was more healthy than modern diets from what I can see.

Just the lack of processed ingredients, and abundant salt, sugar, and fat is going to make a huge difference. Not to mention whatever harm we suffer from the chemicals they put in our food. And microplastics.

Then beyond food. Living without everything being contaminated with lead and asbestos can’t be bad.

I’m not nostalgic for a primitive life. But industrial environmental degradation has been disastrous for health, even if it coincided with modern medicine (great for those who can get it).

Edit: typo.

SO that’s why we have Dreamsexuals.

Yes, but that is not the point, we aren’t anprims to argue that.

Primitivism isn’t even materially possible, but revolutionizing the proletariat’s relationship to production and de-alienating people would do a lot to restore us “to nature” without de-industrializing.

Buhhhhh but what about human nature dohhhhh?

“B-b-but, m-m-markets existed before capitalism! Therefore, markets are human nature bro!”

Ask 'em what the Ancient Greeks thought of markets.


I’m glad you asked :D

Markets are just one way of distributing goods and services but they are the primary method of distribution in capitalism. Markets have existed almost as long as human society has existed. Ellen Meiksins Woods argues that the turn towards capitalism is marked by their status: until capitalism, they were optional; within capitalism, they are essential. Today, (almost) everyone must use markets to meet their daily needs.

The Ancient Greeks were not too fond of Markets. Others may disagree, of course – we are talking philosophy, here. Richard D Wolff suggests that (most?) Ancient Greeks preferred other distribution methods. The primary sources, of Aristotle at least, seem fairly clear and align with Wolff’s claims. Some writers (unknowingly?) distort Aristotle or Plato through bourgeois assumptions, so not everyone agrees on what the Ancient Greeks thought.

It may help to understand Aristotle’s ‘teleological’ method and his ‘situationist’ ethics – those who see bourgeois ideas in Aristotle seem to miss the how of his reasoning, at least when Aristotle is talking about markets and exchange. Aristotle’s method is dialectical (a more primitive dialectics than Marxist dialectics) – so no surprises that bourgeois scholars misunderstand him.

In brief…

‘Teleology’ means deciding what is right by looking at its ‘purpose’ or ‘end goal’. So it is right, for Aristotle, to give a flute to the flautist, because the flute is meant to be played. Given this, how could anyone read Aristotle and think he would prefer the flute to go to whoever can afford one in the marketplace? But people argue as much.

Aristotle’s ‘situationism’ (or ‘virtue’ ethics) requires deciding what is right based on the situation. He considers the extremes, and the right answer is somewhere in the middle. A soldier running away from the enemy is a coward and a soldier running towards the enemy is brave. But a brave soldier will be killed quickly. So the best soldier, the virtuous soldier, stays in line and proceeds at the same pace as the whole army. Distributing goods to whomever can pay the price ignores the facts of any given situation. Aristotle would be unlikely to support that method of distribution.

In ‘Aristotle on Equality and Market Exchange’, Scott Meikle concludes ((1991) Journal of Hellenic Studies, vol 111, pp. 193–196, at 196, footnote removed):

Aristotle’s … is the first conceptual enquiry into the nature of exchange-value, and in the days when classical education was commoner than it is now its importance was appreciated by economists. Marx’s analysis of exchange-value is explicitly based on it, and Böhm-Bawerk, the economist of the Austrian School and Marx’s earliest serious critic, scorned the fact that “Marx had found in old Aristotle the idea that ‘exchange cannot exist without equality, and equality cannot exist without commensurability’”.

From this small extract, it seems that Böhm-Bawerk thinks Marx was wrong and that Aristotle instead thought exchange and equality can go hand-in-hand. I think Marx was right. I’ll give you some quotes in comments, below, to help you decide which side you fall one.

If you’re interested, here are some quotes from Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics (from: I have added emphasis and line breaks for clarity. Note that some of the following can be interpreted differently because Aristotle is talking in the abstract and talking of virtues, not just of goods and services. I’ll split the quotes into four comments so they are easier to manage.

In Book V.1 Aristotle explains his method:

With regards to justice and injustice we must (1) consider what kind of actions they are concerned with, (2) what sort of mean justice is, and (3) between what extremes the just act is intermediate.

Book V.2:

It is clear … there is more than one kind of justice, and that there is one which is distinct from virtue entire[.]

Book V.3:

… [T]he just is… the proportional; the unjust is what violates the proportion. … [F]or the man who acts unjustly has too much, and the man who is unjustly treated too little, of what is good.

This, then, is one species of the just.

In Book V.4, Aristotle indicates that an exchange is ‘just’ if it results in ‘an equal amount before and after the transaction’:

The remaining [kind of justice] arises in connexion with transactions both voluntary and involuntary. This form of the just has a different specific character from the former.

For the justice which distributes common possessions is always in accordance with the kind of proportion mentioned above (for in the case also in which the distribution is made from the common funds of a partnership it will be according to the same ratio which the funds put into the business by the partners bear to one another); and the injustice opposed to this kind of justice is that which violates the proportion.

But the justice in transactions between man and man is a sort of equality indeed, and the injustice a sort of inequality; not according to that kind of proportion, however, but according to arithmetical proportion. For it makes no difference whether a good man has defrauded a bad man or a bad man a good one[.] … [T]he judge … [takes] away from the gain of the assailant. … [A]t all events when the suffering has been estimated, the one is called loss and the other gain. This is why … people … take refuge in the judge; … to go to the judge is to go to justice[.] …

Now the judge restores equality; it is as though there were a line divided into unequal parts[.] … [W]hen the whole has been equally divided, then they say they have ‘their own’[.] … The equal is intermediate between the greater and the lesser line according to arithmetical proportion. It is for this reason also that it is called just … because it is a division into two equal parts[.] …

These names, both loss and gain, have come from voluntary exchange; for to have more than one’s own is called gaining, and to have less than one’s original share is called losing, e.g. in buying and selling and in all other matters in which the law has left people free to make their own terms; but when they get neither more nor less but just what belongs to themselves, they say that they have their own and that they neither lose nor gain.

Therefore the just is intermediate between a sort of gain and a sort of loss, viz. those which are involuntary; it consists in having an equal amount before and after the transaction.

In Book V.5, Aristotle considers ‘reciprocity’ (i.e. giving and receiving) and suggests that markets distort reciprocity. There are some mixed messages, here:

Some think that reciprocity is without qualification just, as the Pythagoreans said; for they defined justice without qualification as reciprocity. …

[T]here is a great difference between a voluntary and an involuntary act. … [I]n associations for exchange this sort of justice does hold men together—reciprocity in accordance with a proportion and not on the basis of precisely equal return. For it is by proportionate requital that the city holds together. … [T]hey give a prominent place to the temple of the Graces—to promote the requital of services; for this is characteristic of grace—we should serve in return one who has shown grace to us, and should another time take the initiative in showing it.

In the same part, Book V.5, Aristotle considers the equation of goods and services (in markets):

Now proportionate return is secured by cross-conjunction. Let A be a builder, B a shoemaker, C a house, D a shoe. The builder, then, must get from the shoemaker the latter’s work, and must himself give him in return his own. If, then, first there is proportionate equality of goods, and then reciprocal action takes place, the result we mention will be effected. If not, the bargain is not equal, and does not hold; for there is nothing to prevent the work of the one being better than that of the other; they must therefore be equated. …

For it is not two doctors that associate for exchange, but a doctor and a farmer, or in general people who are different and unequal; but these must be equated. This is why all things that are exchanged must be somehow comparable. It is for this end that money has been introduced, and it becomes in a sense an intermediate; for it measures all things, and therefore the excess and the defect-how many shoes are equal to a house or to a given amount of food.

The number of shoes exchanged for a house (or for a given amount of food) must therefore correspond to the ratio of builder to shoemaker. For if this be not so, there will be no exchange and no intercourse. And this proportion will not be effected unless the goods are somehow equal. All goods must therefore be measured by some one thing[.] …

Now this unit is in truth demand, which holds all things together (for if men did not need one another’s goods at all, or did not need them equally, there would be either no exchange or not the same exchange); but money has become by convention a sort of representative of demand; and this is why it has the name ‘money’ (nomisma)-because it exists not by nature but by law (nomos)[.] …

There will, then, be reciprocity when the terms have been equated so that as farmer is to shoemaker, the amount of the shoemaker’s work is to that of the farmer’s work for which it exchanges. But we must not bring them into a figure of proportion when they have already exchanged (otherwise one extreme will have both excesses), but when they still have their own goods. Thus they are equals and associates just because this equality can be effected in their case. …

Here in Book V.5, Aristotle suggests the equality of goods or services is artificial and imposed on them:

Now the same thing happens to money itself as to goods—it is not always worth the same; yet it tends to be steadier. This is why all goods must have a price set on them; for then there will always be exchange, and if so, association of man with man. Money, then, acting as a measure, makes goods commensurate and equates them; for neither would there have been association if there were not exchange, nor exchange if there were not equality, nor equality if there were not commensurability. Now in truth it is impossible that things differing so much should become commensurate, but with reference to demand they may become so sufficiently.

There must, then, be a unit, and that fixed by agreement (for which reason it is called money); for it is this that makes all things commensurate, since all things are measured by money. … [I]t is plain, then, how many beds are equal to a house[.] … That exchange took place thus before there was money is plain; for it makes no difference whether [e.g.] it is five beds that exchange for a house, or the money value of five beds.

We have now defined the unjust and the just. These having been marked off from each other, it is plain that just action is intermediate between acting unjustly and being unjustly treated; for the one is to have too much and the other to have too little. Justice is a kind of mean, but not in the same way as the other virtues, but because it relates to an intermediate amount, while injustice relates to the extremes.

At the end of Book V.5 we get to Aristotle’s implicit criticism of capitalist markets:

And justice is that in virtue of which the just man is said to be a doer, by choice, of that which is just, and one who will distribute either between himself and another or between two others not so as to give more of what is desirable to himself and less to his neighbour (and conversely with what is harmful), but so as to give what is equal in accordance with proportion[.] …

Injustice on the other hand is similarly related to the unjust, which is excess and defect, contrary to proportion[.] … In the unjust act to have too little is to be unjustly treated; to have too much is to act unjustly.

Therefore, if an exchange results in one party receiving less than they have given, as in wage labour, the exchange is unjust, according to Aristotle. This is not to say that Aristotle argued for a better system than capitalism, but it is to say that Aristotle rejected a market-based distribution of goods and services.

In Book V.6, Aristotle clarifies that ‘acting unjustly does not necessarily imply being unjust’. Perhaps this is what gives bourgeois writers room to say that Aristotle would have thought that some markets involve injustice but are still just:

[W]ith respect to each type of injustice, e.g. … an adulterer … a man might even lie with a woman knowing who she was, but the origin of his might be not deliberate choice but passion. He acts unjustly, then, but is not unjust; e.g. a man is not … an adulterer, yet he committed adultery; and similarly in all other cases.

Now we have previously stated how the reciprocal is related to the just; but we must not forget that what we are looking for is not only what is just without qualification but also political justice. …

This is why we do not allow a man to rule, but rational principle, because a man behaves thus in his own interests and becomes a tyrant. The magistrate on the other hand is the guardian of justice … and … of equality also. And since he is assumed to have no more than his share, if he is just … a reward must be given him, and this is honour and privilege; but those for whom such things are not enough become tyrants.

Book V.7:

Of political justice part is natural, part legal[.] … The things which are just by virtue of convention and expediency are like measures; for wine and corn measures are not everywhere equal, but larger in wholesale and smaller in retail markets. …

There is a difference between the act of injustice and what is unjust, and between the act of justice and what is just; for a thing is unjust by nature or by enactment[.] … [T]his very thing, when it has been done, is an act of injustice[.] … [B]efore it is done is not yet [an injustice] but is unjust.

This idea is clarified in Book V.8:

Acts just and unjust being as we have described them, a man acts unjustly or justly whenever he does such acts voluntarily; when involuntarily, he acts neither unjustly nor justly except in an incidental way; for he does things which happen to be just or unjust. Whether an act is or is not one of injustice (or of justice) is determined by its voluntariness or involuntariness; for when it is voluntary it is blamed, and at the same time is then an act of injustice; so that there will be things that are unjust but not yet acts of injustice, if voluntariness be not present as well.

By the voluntary I mean, as has been said before, any of the things in a man’s own power which he does with knowledge, i.e. not in ignorance either of the person acted on or of the instrument used or of the end that will be attained … each such act being done not incidentally nor under compulsion[.] … Therefore that which is done in ignorance, or though not done in ignorance is not in the agent’s power, or is done under compulsion, is involuntary[.] …

But in the case of unjust and just acts alike the injustice or justice may be only incidental[.] … Of voluntary acts we do some by choice, others not by choice; by choice those which we do after deliberation, not by choice those which we do without previous deliberation.

But if a man harms another by choice, he acts unjustly; and these are the acts of injustice which imply that the doer is an unjust man, provided that the act violates proportion or equality. …

Of involuntary acts some are excusable, others not. For the mistakes which men make not only in ignorance [and] … from ignorance are excusable[.] …

Book V.9 (the italics suggest Aristotle would not see a capitalist as virtuous and might see the wage labourer as harmed even if they voluntarily accept less value than they produce, i.e. in the market):

Of the questions we intended to discuss two still remain for discussion; (3) whether it is the man who has assigned to another more than his share that acts unjustly, or he who has the excessive share, and (4) whether it is possible to treat oneself unjustly. [I]f the former alternative is possible and the distributor acts unjustly and not the man who has the excessive share, then if a man assigns more to another than to himself, knowingly and voluntarily, he treats himself unjustly; which is what modest people seem to do, since the virtuous man tends to take less than his share. … [H]e suffers nothing contrary to his own wish, so that he is not unjustly treated as far as this goes, but at most only suffers harm.

Men think that acting unjustly is in their power, and therefore that being just is easy. … [B]ut how actions must be done and distributions effected in order to be just, to know this is a greater achievement than knowing what is good for the health; though even there, [knowledge] applied with a view to producing health, is no less an achievement than that of being a physician.

In Book VIII.10, Aristotle reveals the type of system he reveres and the type of systems that he detests:

There are three kinds of constitution, and an equal number of deviation-forms–perversions, as it were, of them. The constitutions are monarchy, aristocracy, and thirdly that which is based on a property qualification, which it seems appropriate to call timocratic, though most people are wont to call it polity. The best of these is monarchy, the worst timocracy.

The deviation from monarchy is tyrany; for both are forms of one-man rule, but there is the greatest difference between them; the tyrant looks to his own advantage, the king to that of his subjects. For a man is not a king unless he is sufficient to himself and excels his subjects in all good things; and such a man needs nothing further; therefore he will not look to his own interests but to those of his subjects; for a king who is not like that would be a mere titular king.

Now tyranny is the very contrary of this; the tyrant pursues his own good. And it is clearer in the case of tyranny that it is the worst deviation-form; but it is the contrary of the best that is worst. Monarchy passes over into tyranny; for tyranny is the evil form of one-man rule and the bad king becomes a tyrant.

Aristocracy passes over into oligarchy by the badness of the rulers, who distribute contrary to equity what belongs to the city-all or most of the good things to themselves, and office always to the same people, paying most regard to wealth; thus the rulers are few and are bad men instead of the most worthy.

Timocracy passes over into democracy; for these are coterminous, since it is the ideal even of timocracy to be the rule of the majority, and all who have the property qualification count as equal. Democracy is the least bad of the deviations; for in its case the form of constitution is but a slight deviation. These then are the changes to which constitutions are most subject; for these are the smallest and easiest transitions.

I disagree with the type of system that Aristotle preferred – he was no communist. But I fail to see how anyone can read him and find support for markets and especially not capitalist markets, which are principally based on unequal exchange.

And even when we get the money or barter on that scale, the line moves maybe 2 pixels.

Capitalism = when exchange of goods exists

Respiration is gas exchange

Respiration is capitalism

All living things respire

All living things are capitalism


capitalism is when I give you thing and you give me thing

what if me give you stone in head?


tis but human nature

Create a post

This is a Dengist community in favor of Bashar al-Assad with no information that can lead to the arrest of Hillary Clinton, our fellow liberal and queen. This community is not ironic. We are Marxists-Leninists.

If you haven’t already found it, this GitHub page is an excellent collection of sources about socialism, imperialism, and other relevant topics, made by @dessalines and others.

We have a Matrix homeserver and a private Matrix room. See this thread for more information.


  • No ableism, racism, misogyny, transphobia, etc.
  • No being pro-Amerikkka
  • No being an electoralist or a lib (of course)
  • Moderator discretion
  • This community is explicitly pro-AES
  • No dogmatism/idealism (ultra-leftism, Trotskyism, “Gonzaloism”, anarchism, etc.)
  • Reactionary or ultra-leftist cringe posts belong in /c/shitreactionariessay or /c/shitultrassay respectively
  • 0 users online
  • 21 users / day
  • 111 users / week
  • 204 users / month
  • 466 users / 6 months
  • 2 subscribers
  • 8.29K Posts
  • Modlog