Thursday, May 22, 2014

A Radical Departure... Marx, Part I

So, I've been reading me some Marx.  With a deliberate purpose, this time around: I was trying to divine Marx's fundamental principles.

See, I encountered this concept called the "Lumpenproletariat", which is essentially a derogatory term for the welfare class that Marx used.  "Wait," I thought, "Wouldn't Marx be -for- the welfare class?"  So I started reading.

Long story short: Nope.  Marx regarded the welfare class as class security for the bourgeois.  He expected them to be counter-revolutionary and vote for bourgeois socialists, who he describes thusly:

"The Socialistic bourgeois want all the advantages of modern social conditions without the struggles and dangers necessarily resulting therefrom. They desire the existing state of society, minus its revolutionary and disintegrating elements. They wish for a bourgeoisie without a proletariat. The bourgeoisie naturally conceives the world in which it is supreme to be the best; and bourgeois Socialism develops this comfortable conception into various more or less complete systems. In requiring the proletariat to carry out such a system, and thereby to march straightway into the social New Jerusalem, it but requires in reality, that the proletariat should remain within the bounds of existing society, but should cast away all its hateful ideas concerning the bourgeoisie... Bourgeois Socialism attains adequate expression when, and only when, it becomes a mere figure of speech.

Free trade: for the benefit of the working class. Protective duties: for the benefit of the working class. Prison Reform: for the benefit of the working class. This is the last word and the only seriously meant word of bourgeois socialism. It is summed up in the phrase: the bourgeois is a bourgeois — for the benefit of the working class."

With the possible exception of Free Trade, which has a habit of undermining the bourgeois, what political party does this sound like?

Ain't the Republicans.

What -are- the Republicans?  Well, who are the proletariat?

The working class.

Which political party is dominated by the beliefs of the working class?

Now, this is not to say that the Republicans -aren't- largely run by the upper classes; this is true as much of the Republicans as the Democrats.  The difference is that Republicans do a much better job of reflecting the wishes of their constituents.  The Tea Party represented the proletariat, the working classes, more truly than had been seen in a while; they weren't quite -welcomed- by the Republicans, but neither were they turned away.

I'll leave further ramifications of the Republicans being more proletariat in nature, and the Democrats more bourgeoisie in nature, to the reader.

I'll close with a quote from Marx, and my simplistic translation:

"The bourgeoisie finds itself involved in a constant battle. At first with the aristocracy; later on, with those portions of the bourgeoisie itself, whose interests have become antagonistic to the progress of industry."

The bourgeois will stop promoting free-market capitalism, and start opposing it, when capitalism stops benefiting them.

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