Capitalism brought the global connection to the new world of the 21st century, and the way it paved for the open-world Implementating open economy opened a new door to see the way and experience it but it also brought many things that hurt us like declining the trades of third world countries, the gap between higher class people and lower class, climate change, terrorism. While capitalism was the tool of the middle-class people. But when we fall to the lower class people, the miserable life they are living, hardship, sorrowful life which is ignored by capitalism the saviour which came with holding the light of hope was the Karl Marx with the "Communist Manifesto".
In present days, as we see more than 90% of countries in the world are ruling based on the system that advocates Capitalism called themselves democratic and supporters of liberalism. Some countries are following the mixed economy model while the market is left free and the government monitors the basic needs of the people giving choices like government schools, hospitals, subsidiaries shops. And some socialist claims that there must not be two systems in case of fundamentals needs of people.
In the present world of technology, which is the greatest benediction of capitalism, communist countries like China and Russia take top pos8tions on the lists of well-developed technology countries. Mechanization of industries is going on. Now, people want to earn money with the help of money. Working physically is number in the last in the list of the profession. Of presence day world. People like to work from inside rooms. They feel they don't deserve to work in lands, they feel great to be a trader, online worker, and industries production foods like junk foods are increasing day by day where the natural foods are declining day by day.
In this present time, even communist countries have limited marxism in their economic model like china where private properties the rights of people now.
This makes us ask," Is marxism relevant to our era?". It Is important to ask because the capitalist who was the driver of capitalism now is limited to production and are demanding socialism in the phase of financial capitalism, they want protection, security in open markets.
Let's try to understand Karl Marx theory
Classical economist Adam Smith:
The market must be left free, with no intervention of government on it. The state must to confined to publishing law and order.
The market will work balancing the balance between the demand and supply
There will be a balance between, producers, consumers and workers
After the death of Adam Smith, industrialisation started. He never got a chance to see the influence of industries. His theory was initiated in the mercantile era.
When capitalism was introduced it was taken as a medium of liberator and also was taken as a mediator and was emphasising the open market, want to see equilibrium in the market, competition in markets and government must be out of the market (no authority to control the market).
But when industrialisation initiated, for more profit, there has to be more increase in production. And for production humans resources were not found to be relevant. This there was the introduction of machines. With the machines in productions now there started exploitation of workers with an increased grievance. With the increase in machines, no one is ready to risk for workers these workers have to reduce their wages.
In classical economics,
Production was dependent on two factors
But now with the introduction of machines, workers began to lose their position in the market. And the capital went on accumulating. Now, this disrupted the balance in the market on the production side which was not expected by the economics of that era. Karl Marx appeared to claim that there is a shadow hidden in the light of capitalism that supports free trade. He said, "this is the monopoly established by middle-class people".
The economist of that times was saving capitalism as we see some of their theories:
David Recardo: Iron theory of wages; if you increase the wages of workers to uplift the standard of living of workers, they will spend the capital on extravagance: gambling and drinking. Better is to keep own self (within capitalistic) and use it as an investment to uplift society.
Malthus: the principle of population; our food production is increased by arithmetically where the population is increasing by geometrically. Due to this imbalance in growths, they break reciprocally, nature becomes active and consumes extra
This was the clear indication that the condition of workers degrading day by day was not due to capitalism, it was to take as an act of nature. This is what made the condition of workers worst at the start of 20 century.
Workers were working with smokes their lungs were damaged, no medicine. They were exploited highly and their life expectancy was decreased to 17 years. Thinks like Malthus was indicating that this decline in mortality rate is due to nature trying to balance the things.
But some thinkers were taken as pre-marxist thinkers
They were making the voice of,
The capitalist must be liberal to the workers. The capitalist must increase the wages and the state must play a role to uplift the state of workers in the process of industrialization.
Active state (for the upliftment of workers) with compassionate capitalist towards workers, liberal (lessening the profits and increasing their wages) were the demands of those thinkers.
They himself was industrialised, British, open a cooperative organization of workers. And the same conclusion was initiated by Charles Fourier who was French.
Some Christians compassion was used. (saint Simon: There are unlimited resources with nature if everybody working together exploit it all can get benefits from it. Why are you all competing with one another?)
Louis Blanc, French, was more realistic who focused on the cooperative organization operated by the state.
Here, socialist and capitalist thinker differs on the role of government. Capitalist feel no government intervention. But the socialist government must work on the behalf of the workers. Capitalist don't want to increase the role of government because it increases the tax.
Philosophers always try to define the world, how it is? But the time wants action, this Karl Marx appeared in the ground.
In the first half-decade of the 20th century, people believe that 40% of people were somehow related to Marxism.
Karl Marx was a philosopher, sociologist, economist, and social scientist. He was from Germany, the son of a lawyer and belongs to the family of protestant. He was jew. Germany was a country of protestant thus, for survival his father changed himself to protestant. This is why Karl Marx from his childhood believed that religion is the worst exploitation.
Karl Marx was sent to study law but he joined philosophy at Berlin University. Later, his the demise of his father his economic condition could not support his further study so he joined journalism where he studied economy. He wrote many articles on radical changes which made him lose his job. He could survive in Germany, he went to Paris and got married to his childhood girlfriend Jenny.
In Paris, he meets with Friedrich Engel, who gives in financial support.
Different class people exist in our society with different interest. This is why? Horses can not cooperate with grass. If it does what does it eat. This, cooperation between the class is a flawed concept.
If we see the history of human, if we start from the stone age, after it we start to live in groups due to conflict in different groups we start to choose a leader of the group which gave rise to "labels", later these leaders started to control groups on decent prior thus there started a system of monarchy and subjects. After the monarch, the conflict between this class gave rise to feudalism, feudalism gave rise to capitalism where a new class came into existence.
If we see history, the conflict between the classes is what drags a society to a new transformation.
This conflict between classes is inherent in history itself. Haves and have can't have a simple interest with cooperation, standing on the same foot.
In any kind of theory, there are two types of thinkers.
Those who also emphasise the concept. Ideology is important. If ideas get flows on the right track society can be manipulated with these ideas.
Other types are action bases. They think of action there sees results and makes a conclusion. These types of thinkers emphasize the physical world.
Hegelian philosophy was 1st type of, whenever ideas progress there will be progress in society. And Hegel gave a theory that states that, " progress in ideology occurs when there is dialectic in views, opinions and thoughts. When there is a conflict between two thoughts it gives rise to third thoughts.
Which this progress the society is dragged into it. This philosophy made Karl Marx attracted to Hegelian philosophy.
But Karl Marx was not a man of taking flights, he was more fascinated by the world in front of him. When he got a chance to meet Engel, he became attracted to his thoughts when he read a book published by Engel, " The condition of working man in England".
Karl Mar used both concepts to see the world, he saw the conflict between two class in the ground field.
Capitalism is inherently unjust which converts workers to commodity
According to Karl Marx, the concept that in which capitalism stands is wrong. We know that capitalism gives emphasis on profit and see everything in the concept of marketization. And according to Marx, capitalism is unjust because of reasons :
1) Competition: grows greed within man, hurts ego when we can't achieve the target.
2) individualism: an individual has to keep on going on. The man is born as a social being. But capitalism destroyed man to think of only self.
Capitalism not only creates economic deprivation but also self-alienation among workers
When do we say what is different between animals and humans? , at this question, Karl Marx says, " Man enjoys the work". He can enjoy as well as give the direction of his work. And when he is exploited by the capitalist people, his work gets fewer wages, only exploitation, he starts to create economic deprivation which causes self-alienation.
And Marx sees capitalization as a moral flaw of our system, it is the error of our civilization. This, he criticizes both capitalist class people and workers about it.
Works can free themselves from self-alienation by a social consciousness that is class consciousness. And middle-class people feel self-alienation for them the solution is leaving out the private property and living being equal to lower class people.
Basic-structure and super-structure paradigm gave a new direction to the interpretation of social science
Marx takes Basic structure to the economic structure. When we listen to economic it is related to resources. So, according to Marx, there is always conflicts between two thoughts or classes to capture control over the means of resources. Now, when one class control the basic structure, it gets scared that he may lose what he obtained thus Marx, feels that he makes changes in the superstructure that are political, social, cultural, ideological aspects to be protected.
This is a clear message that whatever prevailing laws are made they are to protect the interest of the people who have control over the economic system.
With the concept of surplus-value, he attacked the capitalistic approach( classical economics)
Classical economy believes that when raw materials which cost $1 is well refined or some quality is added with the help of labours, then if it is sold in $15, Marx questioned it was the workers who gave that value and they are only given wages of about the part of 5% of total income. This makes the capitalist accumulated more capital which he will invest in other places and does more exploitation.
Capitalism is somehow affected by some sort of internal contradictions. And the three stages of the proletariat revolution.
Contradictions in capitalism are according to Marx, is that capitalism demands more profit for it need mass production. with mass production exploitation of workers. With more exploitation someday there will be class consciousness among workers, " they start to think that more industries mean more exploitation". This will create a situation for a preliterate revolution. Finally, this will be shrinking the market of the capitalist.
When proletariate revolution occurs, it occurs in three stages :
Direct action: when class consciousness appears on workers. They start a revolution with the industrialist with a direct impact.
Dictatorship: after direct action, now it has to be spread over the state, and take over the state and be a dictator. At this stage, The dictator must preserve the state and make this ideology flow over the other parts of the world. Finally to all the world.
Class less and stateless: at the end, no boundary with everyone being in the same class that is a proletariat class.
This is the dream of Karm Marx, revolution. This is what we called a communist system, i.e stage three.
In my opinion, Karl Marx believes that the attachment to this system or life-like identification, religion, decent linkage, all lies with the property. When one gets free from it, now at that state there won't be any attachments. No greediness. People's lives in a harmonious relation.
But the dreams of Marx, remainder a dream to date.
In the period of Karl Marx, it would be wrong to say that capitalist people just fold their hands and sat at the corner. No, they didn't.
Charles Darwin, Darwinism: SURVIVAL FOR FITNESS," nature chooses that animals to survive who strongly can adopt the changing world".
Herbert Spencer: claimed that, If nature prepares roads to stronger ones to move forward then why the government is focused on weaker one's. The government must be focused on stronger one's who can adapt easily.
Marx, not only contributes theory, but he also established a socialist international with the help of workers from Britain and France, in 1864. Its objective was a proletariat revolution by uniting workers from Britain and France.
Marx died in 1883, heartbroken because he didn't see any revolution in his lifetime.
Do that makes him be failure prophet?
Well, the most strong weapon of capitalism is the changeable characteristic of it with the present situation.
Therefore to counter marxism, capitalism adopted three characteristics.
Imperialism: After being terrifying about the revolution of workers. It stopped more exploitation. This went out of the ground and started to exploit the colony. (Lenin). Lenin further said, when their starts to exploit the colony there will be a conflict between themselves they become weak and at that time proletariat revolution will be possible. And he claims that imperialism is the apex of capitalism. Letter, when Lenin came into power in 1917-1924, it was he who followed marxism that prevented and saved USSR to get into an economic crisis if that time.
Collaboration between lower-class people and middle-class people
More facilities for workers: when facilities are given to workers, they don't need to go for revolution.
Lenin tried to see the Marxist in a different perspective according to Marx," revolution occurs at the place where there are more industrialized, and capitalism breaks". But Lenin said," capitalism is a change, we can break it by hammering to the weakened piece of chain".
Russian Revolution, gave a name and fame to Marx, but what happened in that revolution let us see:
1. Russian revolution doesn't occur with the proletariat class people but occurred with the help of some competent cadres or subordinates.
Marx revolution was to happen with the proletariat class but didn't happen with them.
2. Marx in his theory never said a word after the revolution. But Russian revolution outcomes were the experiments of men in and sterling.
3. Sterling felt that due to the weakening position of the socialists in the international arena he felt to focus on his state. This, the world concept of revolution was confined with the state concept. This sterling compromise Marxist to the nation-state.
Due to this Russian revolution, there were mainly three changes in the economic model of Russia.
1) Economy planning
2) Collectivization of agriculture
3) fast economic growth
Our economy is, distributed to three sectors primary sectors,(agriculture, natural resources), secondary(industries) and tertiary sectors(services). Now, the Russian government capture all land and allowed the citizen to invest and get benefit profits, it fully rakes over industries(used to decide who works, production and market) and free services. This made the Russian economy go 49% where the rest world was on the consequences of depression in the economy.
Everybody eyes were on the Russian economy. World war started that was the decline of imperialism outcome of capitalism. After the second world war, the cold war started.
Now we come to Asia, there were no industries. So, it was no question of exploitation of workers, so no communism. But it happened in China and Vietnam, for the first time in the history of communism where people took part in this and established communism. Thus, in Asia communism, was established by popular moment. In China, Maoism started.
Mao Tse-tung manipulated the term proletariate class, not only those who don't have private property are the proletariat but the peasant class (framers +labours which can hold limited resources) were taken as the revolutionary class. Some countries were also formed in the west like Cuba.
To encounter this, the capitalist countries awarely took two decision:
World bank group, IMF and GATT, was formed for economic connectivity.
This was declared for the contentment of communism in the world.
Coming to 1980s, there was 82 million communist party member around the world.
According to Marx, the third state was never seen by the world but in the second stage, dictatorship, the power was concentrated to a single person, on his will.
Red tape and corruption: since secondary and tertiary sectors were under the control of the government. Government act with the help of bureaucracy which leads to red-tapism and corruption.
Russian Government could not catch the wave of new technology revolution: Information and technology in such sector it lacked and Russia which was ahead in the second industrialization was lacking behind in the third industrialisation due to isolated policy.
Dissolution of USSR: Due to back in economy, it could not compete with west capitalist nations which resulted in it lose the cold war disintegrating.
The decline of the communist government in east Europe.
The cold war ended, now capitalism won the war, with the disintegration of the USSR.
Now, when socialism was eliminated in the race now capitalism went in progress by new concept i.e Neo-liberal economic policy.
Neoliberalism Economy Policy
In a simple term, it is the relation between politics and economics, where it says the limited government in market sectors where market must be under private sectors, free trade, borderless trade. Putting constraints to government power upon the market and exploring the rights of private sectors in markets.
It also an emphasis on production, when there is a production more capital will be given to workers and their living standard uplifts. Governments must not be a focus on incentives and security programmes to lower class people, must focus on investment.
And this globalization concept came into effect.
This neoliberalism economy policy and globalization mainly focused on investment and impacted lower class people how?
As the thinks who initiated this theory didn't see its drawbacks that make get control by market forces but capitalist people started to create an artificial shortage and increased the price of goods and services. The game started to be played in markets.
Overall, the rich went on becoming rich where the lower class poor went on becoming poor and poor day by day.
This created an economic crisis in 2008, 2017.
Finally, in 2020 with the introduction of covid-19 now the world started to see the true face of capitalism.
What did we see?
There were huge capital investments in sectors with greater returns. This we omitted the sectors that were focused on our fundamental needs. This we saw the lack of hospital equipment, there were no enough hospitals around.
Lower class people with less remuneration could not save their money, now the health crisis was on their head.
Higher class people with the help of politicians they were treated in standard facilitated rooms.
Corruption on purchase of health equipment
Due to many investments in financial sectors, farmers were seeing doing strike on roads.
Higher class people were making a direct influence on the governments.
With the second wave over the world, everything was adversely impacted.
At the present day, where we are forced to live in our rooms due to lockdown, we can ask capitalism that," Is this the world which you have been promising for us?" Because every day we move with time, we are making Marx was correct in the context that capitalism is an unjust concept.
The relevancy of Marxist theory is as fresh as it was in times of Karl Marx. Because we are seeing that capitalism is failing our system day by day, introducing new problems day by day.
It is the capitalism that showed that everything can be sold in the market that made our politics one of the professions which made the poor countries system drown in the sea of corruption.
I can see, Marx is laughing from his grave seeing our condition today.
Thank you, for you time.