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Re: [ox-en] Re: Governments using Free Software

On 2007-11-28 23:58, graham wrote:
Could you explain?

I am trying to generalize on the basis of some very limited personal
experience, so this may well be wrong (if I write 'often', it's a

Thank you.

Now I think that capital must flow through the company as a whole for
capitalism to work, and not just through the bank account or physical
production. And the way it flows through is via the budgets of
individual departments, which are the power base of the managers in
those departments. The turnover of a department is just as much the
measure of its importance as the turnover of a company is. So the
internal flow of capital provides the power base which allows a
capitalist organisation to work. Without it there would always be the
risk of the collapse of hierarchy, where hierarchy is no longer
supported by tradition. No hierarchy, end of system: so attempts to
do anything that would reduce it are treated as attacks. Fully free
software within a company reduces the flow of capital and endangers
hierarchy (mind you, so in a different way does the use of IM without
authorization by all the staff...)

So you put the rivalery between free and proprietary software into the 
framework of transition from fordist to post-fordist types of 
organization? However, how important is this hierarchy type of 
organisation yet? Aren't there more and more flat types, which should 
be in favor of free software?

That went on way longer than I meant it to... It obviously can't be
completely right, because then you can't explain Munich, Extremadura,
etc (except to the extent that these are political moves, and I
haven't heard anything to make me think that is the case. The
Venezuelan case is an exception, because it is 100% political, not
economic). But I would like to hear why it isn't right, based on
others' experience.

I have some experience in my "firm" which is a union. There was a small 
group fighting for a change to free software. We lost concerning the 
desktops, we won concerning web services (because finally we did it). 
We lost on the desktops because of two reasons (maybe only one): 
qualification of employees and more important qualification of the 
technical staff. In our example not the management was stopping, but 
the middle technical personal (btw. directly supported by Microsoft). 
They smartly used the moment of inertia of a big organisation.


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