ParEcon Questions & Answers

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Intergenerational Relations

dWhat about intergenerational relations in a good society with a parecon, is there a positive vision for that?

Whereas capitalism will exploit age differentials for profit via remuneration for the young and old reduced due to reduced bargaining power and will take advantage of different capacities related to age differences for exploitative divisions of labor and will rush labor entry or slow labor withdrawal compared to humane choices again for exploitative reasons, a parecon will not only not promote such behaviors but will literally make them impossible due to being contrary to defining parecon norms and structures.

Societies will decide the role of the elderly, retirement ages, etc. and likewise for young people’s entry into economic responsibility.

While familiar and other extra-economic intergenerational relations will certainly not be governed solely by economic impositions and will arise, instead, due to a host of variables including new kinship and gender forms, the fact that a parecon requires developed and fully participatory and self managing actors imposes on life more generally a respect for all potential and actual actors and gives them all material equality and behavioral wherewithal and habits quite contrary to any kind of subordination emanating from any other of society’s institutions.

More will be said in a later chapter regarding education whose logic applies as well to what is called socialization, but, other than that, it seems the point is made.

We don’t yet know what liberating gender, sexual, and intergenerational relations will be like but we can say parecon would appear likely to be quite compatible and even nurturing of them. Before long hopefully further kinship vision will exist and this claim and parecon itself can be further elaborated, tested, or refined, as need be.

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