250 years of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR by G. D Komkov

By G. D Komkov

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People have interpreted North as saying that organizations are not institutions. But he did not actually write this. He simply established his own primary interest in macrolevel economic systems rather than the internal functioning of specific organizations. He was not so concerned with the social rules that are internal to organizations because he wanted to treat them as unitary players and focus on interactions at higher levels. There is nothing in principle wrong with the idea that under some conditions organizations can be treated as single actors, such as when there are procedures for members of an organization to express a common or majority decision (Coleman 1982; Hindess 1989).

While this question is not specific to capitalism, it is vital to understand its nature and any postcapitalist possibilities. This is an important preliminary to the following chapter, which is on the viability of socialism. Chapter 12 argues that the abolition of private property and its replacement by comprehensive planning—which until about 1950 was the meaning of socialism held by almost all its adherents—is incompatible with efficient, large-scale production in a modern, complex economy under a democratic polity.

But shared meanings are necessary for communication and mutual understanding. The more abstract and complex the discourse, the more serious this problem becomes. Even “antiessentialists” or “antirealists” must use words carefully and attempt to communicate intended meanings. Absolute precision, like absolute cleanliness, is impossible; but that does not imply that we should abandon our duties of linguistic housekeeping or personal hygiene. 1. Anti-Antiessentialism The term essentialism was allegedly invented by the leading philosophers Karl Popper and Willem van Orman Quine (Wilkins 2012), but distilling the essence 27 they used it in contrasting and challengeable ways.

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