“A spectre is haunting Europe — the spectre of communism. All the powers of old Europe have entered into a holy alliance to exorcise this spectre: Pope and Tsar, Metternich and Guizot, French Radicals and German police-spies.
Where is the party in opposition that has not been decried as communistic by its opponents in power? Where is the opposition that has not hurled back the branding reproach of communism, against the more advanced opposition parties, as well as against its reactionary adversaries?” – Opening lines of the Communist Manifesto
In the early 1840′s the Communist Manifesto was written as a way to bring together people of a certain political inclination, the Communists. It formed the basis for a polical movement of these same communists in which they sought to take some of the power held by the 1% of their day through means of organized politics. It was a way to lay out an idea of class struggle and to present a history of capitalism along with what the problems of capitalism are and how they manifest in the lives of everyday people. What it DIDN’T do is predict what communism would look like. It DID present a socialist approach to dealing with those problems though.
Actually communism is the period in history AFTER socialism. A place in time when we see a stateless, classless society. An end to hierarchial relationships to people and to property. But, like Marx and Engels said, “Where is the party in opposition that has not been decried as communistic by its opponents in power? Where is the opposition that has not hurled back the branding reproach of communism, against the more advanced opposition parties, as well as against its reactionary adversaries?”
The FMAA crowd is no different. They have a fear of communism and seemed determined to remain ignorant on the subject. If you really want to baffle them, bring up anything by Marx. The declare their anti-intellecutalism on the subject with pride and are on the front line in their opposition to communism, while at the same time declaring their admiration for a “stateless” society. And like all reactionary movements, they fall goose-stepping in line with all other facsist fronts.
And when you give them the information, attempt to enlighten them as to what communism actually is….
FMC – “communism is another word for it, but that term refers to state ownership.”
Kom-E Ron – Reactionary propaganda. Just because it has been granted that label (incorrectly) for a long time doesn’t change what communism is. Marxists tended to believe that seizing control of the means of production and centralizing production would be a good strategy to REACH communism, but that isn’t communism. It is Marxist Socialism, a revolutionary step on the way to creating a communist society. As a matter of fact, the communism of Marx can best be described as a utopian idea, because it has yet to exist. Marx, along with all other communists, see communism as a stateless, classless society, with “ownership” of the means of production being communal. And while Marxists see a transitional period from capitalism to communism, socialism, that is far from the ONLY train of thought on the matter. Lots of us see their “transitional phase” and their vanguard-ism as counter-productive and unnecessary. After all, the centralization of wealth/power is ALWAYS the enemy of freedom.
And they always revert back to their previous belief systems. Something that if they put a minute of effort into actually understanding, they would know has already been addressed.
FMC - “where is the incentive to perform well for the talented people if everyone is equal in the end? if humans lived this way we would never have evolved! cottage industries that provide services to a community in exchange for other services, goods or currency are our best bet for a society where wealth follows merit.”
Kom-E Ron – Where was the “incentive” to “evolve” before capitalism? Why do enterprising people often provide their goods or services free (anti-ip)? Why do people develop products, never knowing if they will ever sell one?
And again, when you refer to “cottage industry”, this is the petty bougies, a reactionary force when they feel they need to “defend” what is theirs.
People will work. If you have ever spent time on the disabled list, you know that sitting around is the worst thing in the world. Now imagine a society where someone can try their hand at whatever tickles their fancy. Instead of being forced to perform like monkeys just to meet their basic needs, they are free to pursue those things which interest them. Of course we all have to work to meet our basic needs, one thing that can’t be changed. But how we do that and how much time we spend doing it is very flexible. How many farmers would there be if they could farm without being forced out of the market? How many fishermen? How many teachers?
But this too was already addressed by Marx, which even a cursory examination of Marx or the Communist Manifesto would point out…
“It has been objected that upon the abolition of private property, all work will cease, and universal laziness will overtake us.
According to this, bourgeois society ought long ago to have gone to the dogs through sheer idleness; for those of its members who work, acquire nothing, and those who acquire anything do not work. The whole of this objection is but another expression of the tautology: that there can no longer be any wage-labour when there is no longer any capital.
All objections urged against the Communistic mode of producing and appropriating material products, have, in the same way, been urged against the Communistic mode of producing and appropriating intellectual products. Just as, to the bourgeois, the disappearance of class property is the disappearance of production itself, so the disappearance of class culture is to him identical with the disappearance of all culture.
That culture, the loss of which he laments, is, for the enormous majority, a mere training to act as a machine.
But don’t wrangle with us so long as you apply, to our intended abolition of bourgeois property, the standard of your bourgeois notions of freedom, culture, law, &c. Your very ideas are but the outgrowth of the conditions of your bourgeois production and bourgeois property, just as your jurisprudence is but the will of your class made into a law for all, a will whose essential character and direction are determined by the economical conditions of existence of your class.
The selfish misconception that induces you to transform into eternal laws of nature and of reason, the social forms springing from your present mode of production and form of property – historical relations that rise and disappear in the progress of production – this misconception you share with every ruling class that has preceded you. What you see clearly in the case of ancient property, what you admit in the case of feudal property, you are of course forbidden to admit in the case of your own bourgeois form of property.” – Marx by way of the Communist Maifesto.