This blog consists of more-than-occasional links and bits of commentary—some humorous, others more serious, often a combination—on contemporary economics, culture, and society by David F. Ruccio. I used to teach in the Department of Economics at the University of Notre Dame (until it was split and renamed) and then in the Department of Economics and Policy Studies (until it was dissolved). I was then Professor of Economics “at large” as well as a member of the Higgins Labor Studies Program and Faculty Fellow of the Joan B. Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies. Since 2019, I am Professor of Economics Emeritus. I was also the editor of the journal Rethinking Marxism from 1997 to 2009, and continue as a member of the international Advisory Board. My Notre Dame page contains more information. Here is the link to my Twitter page.

The ideas and opinions expressed in the main entries to this blog are my own and do not necessarily reflect those of my previous employer or any other organization with which I am currently affiliated. Guest posts and comments are not moderated and are the sole responsibility of their authors.

  1. Bernard says:


    You have a great blog…. I especially liked the quote from the chef in Chicago.

    Here’s a link to an article on Mondragon that you might find informative … especially now that the US Steelworkers are “collaborating” with them… a developing story – I hope.


  2. David Ruccio says:

    Thanks, Bernard, for the gracious comments about the blog as well the link to the Mondragón essay. Indeed, Mondragón and other enterprises where workers appropriate and control the surplus they produce are important examples of noncapitalism in the world today. Traditional trade unionists in the United States have long been opposed to such experiments. Fortunately, that may now be changing. . .

  3. Wonderful blog. I recognized some of your “Public Art of the Day” photos were in the LA area, as I am an LA photo blogger myself, though I focus more on design and fashion.

    Can’t wait to see more posts. Feel free to head over to my site…



  4. David Ruccio says:

    Thanks, Olivia, I’m glad you like the blog. Good pieces of public art are, for me, another way the world is represented and designed. . .

  5. Keith says:


    We don’t mind that you use our BP art photos for your blog but can you at least ask permission beforehand and write a caption or give a linkback to our blog (greenerati.com).

  6. David Ruccio says:

    My apologies, Keith, but if you check the page, you’ll see I did provide the appropriate link back to your blog.

  7. Keith says:

    Hi David,

    Okay, I do see the linkback. I am happy to have you use the photos but can you please give me or Greenerati.com photo credit. When we use other photos we always give credit. Sorry to be a stickler otherwise people just use photos and posts without credit or even asking permission.

  8. Hi, nice to meet you !

  9. Prof. Edward F. McClennen says:

    It was with considerable anger that I read your account of Saif al-Islam and LSE. If you are a serious scholar, you will get in touch with me–I am presently at LSE on Sabbatical–and find out just how wide of the mark you are with much of what you have to say. I was particularly incensed by your statements, “…doctorate based on a plagiarized doctoral thesis…[and] a veritable rogues’ gallery of LSE scholars (together with politicians and spys) facilitated Qaddafi family connections to the LSE.” Incidentally, it was I (not Held) that brought Saif to LSE, guided him through a Masters degree, and then arranged for him to do a PhD. I had to return to the US, but kept in touch with him regarding his PhD work and read and commented upon the whole of his thesis. I can assure you that he did not plagiairize the thesis–it was an expansion and reworking of his Masters Thesis, and I subsequently accepted his invitation, as did a number of other distinguished international scholars, to serve on a Committee to fashion a new, and democratically oriented Constitution for Libya, meeting dozens of times in Libya and in England. His father did not accept our work. But Saif did! If you want to talk to me, I can be reached at 011-207-955-6820.

  10. David Ruccio says:

    Dear Professor McClennen,

    Please accept my apologies. I failed to include a link to the Daily Mail story in the first version of my post.

    • Calum says:

      There’s another link available today, courtesy of the British government.

      Besides the LSE getting into bed with Saif, Blair struck ‘the deal in the desert’ in Gaddafi’s tent.

      Today the Brit government went public with one of the ‘achievements’ of that deal: agreeing to pay $3.5m to a Libyan family for helping to kidnap them and having the father tortured. http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2012/dec/13/libyan-dissident-mi6-aided-rendition

      Guess the LSE could now run a day school on how a liberal democratic state can find itself tracking down a family to Hong Kong and helping them get kidnapped, with a little torture thrown in. But then again it might frighten off some other dictator who, in coming in from the cold, might be thinking of funding some university research centre emblazoned with his name. As quasi-capital institutions, university managers do what they have to do in the pursuit of funders and fees – the pursuit of scientific inquiry and educating the public doesn’t compare.

  11. […] comments David Ruccio on aboutProf. Edward F. McClennen on aboutUniversity bridge to nowhere? « occasional links & commentary on Wisconsin’s […]

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  13. Woodwork says:

    An attention-grabbing debate is price comment. I do think that you should write extra on this topic, it may not be a taboo matter however usually people are not enough to talk on such topics. Cheers!

  14. Scott M. says:

    I didn’t see a contact in order to e-mail you this link so here it is straight up:


  15. Christian says:

    Dear David,

    Where can I purchase Captial Volume’s II and III. I can’t seem to locate them.



  16. David Ruccio says:

    Dear Christian,

    You can certainly find volumes 2 and 3 in any good academic bookstore (new or used) or on-line, at the usual places (like Amazon or Borders).

  17. Scott M. says:

    There is some good stuff here:


    Export Control Reform, and More from CRS
    July 25th, 2011 by Steven Aftergood

    Congress opposes direct public access to most Congressional Research Service reports, so people who care to read the reports on current policy issues must work around the Congressional barrier. Some noteworthy new reports from CRS include the following (all pdf).

    The U.S. Export Control System and the President’s Reform Initiative, July 14, 2011

    A Balanced Budget Constitutional Amendment: Background and Congressional Options, July 8, 2011

    Selected Characteristics of Private and Public Sector Workers, July 1, 2011

    The Sustainability of the Federal Budget Deficit: Market Confidence and Economic Effects, June 28, 2011

  18. snoop says:

    hi david,

    just learned of you blog from jack last week. outstanding stuff!! thank you.

    here’s a piece by corey robin in a recent _london review of books_ online:


    your readers may find it useful. thanks again for doing this,


  19. Nearly all of the things you point out is supprisingly accurate and it makes me wonder the reason why I hadn’t looked at this in this light before. Your piece really did switch the light on for me personally as far as this subject matter goes. However at this time there is one particular point I am not necessarily too comfortable with so whilst I attempt to reconcile that with the actual main idea of the point, allow me see what the rest of your visitors have to say.Nicely done.

  20. May I send you information about a new book about being gay and the searchfor justice in the 1920’s America. Manuscript read by Howard Zinn, now published by inGroup Press? Lyn LeJeune

  21. Magpie says:

    Prof. Ruccio,

    Here’s the relevant fragment of the letter John Maynard Keynes wrote to George Bernard Shaw quoted by Joan Robinson (and Claudio Sardoni) as containing an admission by Keynes that he never actually read Marx.

    Unfortunately, it seems either Joan Robinson did not properly understand the letter, or Sardoni did not understand her, because the fragment does not support that conclusion:

    Keynes on Marx and Das Kapital

    A bit disappointing, but that’s what I could find, thanks to my friend Danny.

  22. Magpie says:


    I’m very excited with this debate at Crooked Timber. They had a kind of seminary on Spufford’s Red Plenty.

    I haven’t read all posts, but those I’ve read, seem reasonable and fairly argued, without any apparent ideologically-driven intent to condemn or defend the Soviet experience. No shouting, no accusations.

    In particular, however, there is this very interesting post by George Scialabba about the subject of planning:

    It’s interesting to see people considering the possibility that a socialist alternative might actually work, even if one is skeptical about the particular socialist alternative considered.

    Worth a look, I think!

  23. David F. Ruccio says:

    Thanks, Magpie. Me, I’m still running late.

  24. pfosl says:

    Hey David, Great work. You’ve inspired some blogging of my own. PF http://blogs.courier-journal.com/betterlife/2012/09/07/there-is-no-national-debt/

    • David F. Ruccio says:

      Well done, Peter. I couldn’t be happier my modest efforts have inspired you and perhaps others to contribute to the critique of political economy.

  25. Magpie says:


    BBC’s Paul Mason on Prof. Manuel Castells:
    From networked protest to ‘non-capitalism’

    Very exciting!

  26. Wilhelm Frostkin says:

    Big fan of your blog!

    I was forwarded the below; it’s not exactly along the general arc of your commentary, but not necessarily unrelated regarding the circumstances (poverty, disillusionment, et al) making these happenings blossom:


    Thought you might be interested, since it seems there are stirrings of the same here, though a bit more fledgling at this point…

  27. Peter Storm says:

    Skore183 – Buy Euro Bonds
    Via: http://www.skore183.com

  28. Magpie says:


    You might find this text interesting:

    Nietzsche’s Marginal Children: On Friedrich Hayek, by Corey Robin. The Nation, May 7, 2013

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  30. Dana says:

    Hi Prof. David,

    I have been following your blog for some time and I really enjoyed reading it. Your articles and posts are not only refreshing but spot on! I really love your blog!

    I would like to see if I could submit a guest post or 2 for your blog/readers on the following topics:

    1. The Role of MOOCs in Alumni Engagement
    2. 4 Ways The Whole Economy Can Benefit From Increasing Pay of Lowest-Paid Workers

    What do you think about these?

    For your information, all of our articles are custom written by our writers for your blog, and are absolutely free.

    If you are interested, I am happy to get something written up and sent over to you – or if you have another topic you’d like to see covered, please do let me know.

    Thanks and I look forward to your positive response.


    Guest Post U
    The University of Great Content

  31. David F. Ruccio says:

    Sorry, Dana, but I don’t publish guest posts unless by special invitation.

  32. Magpie says:


    You might be interested on this.

    Pentagon bracing for public dissent over climate and energy shocks. by Nafeez Ahmed. The Guardian Online. June 14, 2013.


    “But why have Western security agencies developed such an unprecedented capacity to spy on their own domestic populations? (…) This activity is linked to the last decade of US defence planning, which has been increasingly concerned by the risk of civil unrest at home triggered by catastrophic events linked to climate change, energy shocks or economic crisis – or all three”.

    It appears that, as the Spaniards say, the Pentagon may not believe in witches, but it’s undeniable that they fly.

  33. Magpie says:


    Exciting news!

    Taylor and Francis website made available a series of papers on Joan Robinson and F.A. von Hayek:


    You’ll never guess what I found in one of the papers (Talking About Joan Robinson: Geoff Harcourt in Conversation with John King):

    Harcourt: “And Joan, partly in retrospect, saw that the thrust of the attack of Imperfect Competition on laissez faire, and capitalism generally, was showing that it was a system of exploitation, because it discredited marginal productivity. As soon as you had imperfect competition, workers got paid less than the value of their marginal product.” (page 34)

    (Harcourt had known Robinson since 1955 and was considered one of her closest friends)

    The only difference with He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named, the much maligned and ridiculed Bearded One of Trier, was that he extended this conclusion to perfectly competitive markets, upon which mainstream economics depend by assumption.

  34. A4 print says:

    So does things like LinkedIn and Tumblr now count as search engine optimisation?
    I heard they help because of the latest Google algorithm update
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  35. […] does one begin to evaluate and assess Development and Globalization by David Ruccio, a book of over 400 pages and 16 chapters, spanning output across more than 20 years of […]

  36. lucas says:

    hi david, fyi about a local crazyman who steals from his foodservice workers. the attorney general for MA intervened:


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  39. Huey says:

    Hey there! I just wanted to ask if you ever have any issues with hackers?
    My last blog (wordpress) was hacked and I ended up losing months of hard work due to no back up.
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  40. newsrecordco says:

    Hey David, good articles. I work at Record and we’re currently looking for freelancers. I think you’d be a nice addition to our roster.

    We pay our freelancers 70% of the advertising profit that their articles generate. If you’re interested, send your info at http://www.newsrecord.co/opportunities. If you mention that I commented on this article, you’ll be accepted right away.


  41. […] as David Ruccio, one of the leading heterodox economists on Latin American development and globalisation has […]

  42. keith tucker says:

    I love your blog but I don’t love that you have taken several of my cartoons without paying me. I’m a left of center cartoonist barely surviving. I’m not syndicated, so I count on donations. Your stealing from a hungry artist.
    You’ve had me as cartoon of the day more than once, without compensation!

    • David F. Ruccio says:

      Here’s what I wrote to Keith Tucker in a separate email:

      Dear Keith Tucker,

      I apologize for using your cartoons without payment. I love your cartoons, and believe they play an important role in constituting a left politics in the United States. My view was (and remains) that I’m giving you and your cartoons exposure by posting them on the blog.

      I should explain that I do my blog as a political/intellectual act (in addition to my regular job teaching), and I don’t make a red cent off it. If anything, it costs me a great deal, in both time and money. That’s why I haven’t, and can’t, offer any compensation.

      If under these circumstances you want me to stop posting your cartoons on my blog, I will comply. Just let me know.

      In solidarity,


  43. keith tucker says:

    Upon my further scanning your site I’ve seen many of my cartoons used as cartoon of the day and special mention without paying me. I’m having trouble surviving, I’ve had to cut back on the amount of political cartoons I do because they don’t sell. The right wing owns the media and left of center cartoonists need not apply. Yet my cartoons are taken without pay and I cut back on doing them because I can’t make a living, what’s wrong with this picture? Please support independent political cartoonists, we need the help. http://www.whatnowtoons.com

  44. Antonio Barros says:

    My dear, I am your admirer. That is why I would warn not to embark on the news according to which there was a “coup” in Brazil.
    President Dilma was away and could be impeached not only for having defrauded the government accounts, but above all for having turned a blind eye to corruption in the government of his party, the PT. This was not stated in the claim against its mandate only that parliamentarians are largely also involved.
    Corruption in Brazil is being fought not by the government, the past (Lula and Dilma) and the current but by the judiciary and the Prosecutor’s Office and the Federal Police, which operate independently secured by the Constitution.
    As for the government accounts scenario, the picture is of virtual collapse, leading to paralysis of the private sector and an intense process of layoffs. Dilma proved absolutely incapable of addressing the solution. And this why the PT today is much more the corporate interests of the civil service that the social interests of the poor. The intelligentsia abroad takes left by what in reality is a caste of civil servants infiltrated the parties, especially in the so-called progressive movements.
    The situation in Brazil is much more complex than it seems.
    Antonio Barros

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  51. E.T. says:

    Professor Ruccio,

    Has any Marxist economist to date written anywhere about the evolution of formerly socialist countries in Eastern Europe ? If so, would you have any details ?



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