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n “Our Road to Power,” an article from the most recent issue of Jacobin, Vivek Chibber makes some very familiar arguments about socialism and “central planning.” One hardly has to quote him—they’ve been repeated many times since Alec Nove’s The Economics of Feasible Socialism appeared in 1983.

Chibber hedges his bets, but he certainly seems to agree with Nove and other “market-socialists”—even avowed Marxists such as David Schweickart—that deliberately planning a modern, complex economy will lead to failure. Any attempt at what Chibber misleadingly calls “central planning,” however different it might be from Stalinist “command planning,” can’t work; only via market pricing, with its sensitivity to supply and demand, can decisions on what and how to produce be rendered “efficient,” and only market competition can provide incentives to motivate worker-managed enterprises to be efficient and innovative. But we needn’t worry too much, Chibber says; the market “will be constrained so it isn’t the arbiter of people’s basic well-being” and inequalities of wealth “will not be allowed to translate into political inequalities.”

full: http://newpol.org/content/its-still-fried-ice-market-socialism
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