anonymous asked:

I'm not exactly pro capitalism. I understand it's flaws, but I don't understand how communism is better. Whenever I think of communism I think of the ussr or north korea which aren't good selling points. Also I was always told as a student all the benefits of a free market economy. I admit I am uneducated in this topic, and haven't done outside research. I'd like to explore this point of view. Can you explain a bit more the benefits of communism?

Allow me to preface my political ideologies with this:

It matters just as much who’s running the system as it does what system is being run. That is to say, there are good capitalist leaders and good communist leaders, there are bad capitalist leaders and bad communist leaders. Keep that in mind, as often communism is presented (especially in America) based only on Authoritarian and oppressive regimes of the past. This makes it difficult for many to truly ‘get’ what communism is all about.

But before we get to communism, I’ll talk about capitalism:

I am a classical Marxist, and I think that capitalism, and the related ‘free market’ system are what I like to call ‘broken by design’. Capitalism was explicitly set in place to subjugate workers, this is known, but the idea of a 'free market’ is a bit less-so politicized. Despite making the 'human nature’ argument to bash communism, many libertarians and other capitalists ignore that a 'free market’ requires a moral bound. In a truly 'free market’, individuals and corporations would be able to act without limit, and it would be their natural incentives to buy market share and government policy and form monopolies and eventually make the market less free. This is why I believe the concept of 'free market’ is fundamentally self-defeating.

On to communism!

Under communism, there is a class of workers, called the proletariat, that collectively own the means of production (a common misconception is that everyone takes ownership of your personal belongings, but that isn’t necessary), and redistribute the produced wealth equally among everyone. Socialism is like communism, but on a smaller scale: individual businesses are collectively owned by the 'employees’, and wealth is redistributed to workers, but not to everyone in the state-system.

In a communist system, the proletariat must have some way to enforce their will; this is known as the dictatorship of the proletariat. Oftentimes, historically, the dictatorship of the proletariat evolved into a straight-up dictatorship (like in the countries you mentioned) in the same way private companies can devolve into monopolies under capitalism. The fact is, some people just want to control the wealth. This, however, is a fundamentally capitalist social construction - the idea that the money comes first is taught from a very young age, and imprinted in even the most radical thinkers. Under a truly communist system, however, the will of the general public comes first and foremost. This means that companies no longer operate by means of profiteering, instead they make products that are actually useful and well-built and long-lasting, unlike the products generated today

What is in today’s time a 'moneyocracy’ will become a meritocracy, where innovation and the entire human experience can push forward at an unprecedented rate - and this will involve everyone and not just the top few. Everyone’s standard of living will rise. “A high tide raises all ships” they say.

Another misconception is that due to redistribution of wealth, people will become 'lazy’, and work will cease. Marx puts it brilliantly: “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.” That is to say that under capitalism it is the proprietors and shareholders who legally own all the goods, and the workers who actually make the goods do not actually own them. Personally, I think this is backwards. The working class people are already some of the hardest working people out there, laziness should be your last concern.

With an eased atmosphere of not having to worry about dying because your work isn’t valued by your society, this creates what is called the 'socialist archetype’ (originally called the 'new soviet man’, but I don’t want to make this USSR or male specific). The socialist archetype is a person that is no longer oriented by profit and money seeking, instead they are oriented by what they can contribute to the society they live in. Because they don’t have to worry about literally starving, they have the opportunity to seek higher education (and it would be free!), design or build something, become an artist, or anything else - this archetypal person is simultaneously no type of worker and every type of worker, because they are looking to advance the human condition, and not fill their own wallet. This is essentially the end goal of socialism and communism, and we think it’s pretty cool.

Keep in mind that in the current day and age, most if not all arms of injustice extend from the body of capitalism. So we tend to be less pro-socialism than we are anti-capitalist, as we have to fix our broken world before we can build on it.

If you’re looking for a really good read on communism, I recommend nothing less than The Communist Manifesto itself. It’s only 35 pages long, and relatively accessible - you can probably find it online for free.

I hope this answer will suffice, and that you (and hopefully other members of our audience) will continue to learn and develop your opinions! Cheers!

~:4 mod wave :4~

Upon the different forms of property, upon the social conditions of existence, rises an entire superstructure of distinct and peculiarly formed sentiments, illusions, modes of thought, and views of life. The entire class creates and forms them out of its material foundations and out of the corresponding social relations. The single individual, who derives them through tradition and upbringing, may imagine that they form the real motives and the starting point of his activity.
—  Karl Marx, The Eighteenth Brumaire 

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