Originally posted by Leftist
I believe that capitalism's essential open-endness is the source of both its greatest strengths and greatest weaknesses.
You're going to have difficulty convincing me that being open ended is a weakness, Leftist.
Other people here have mentioned the regimentation of Chinese society. I am only willing to submit to a collective scenario when I have a
sufficiently high level of trust in the other members. I've experienced that recently. The alienation and distrust that you've spoken of, and
American individuality, are mutually reinforcing. Nobody trusts each other because they're individualistic, and so they become more individualistic
because they don't trust each other. It's a self-perpetuating closed loop.
It is a very flexible system, and one of the things that Marx and other early Communists did not forsee was its plasticity and ability to adapt
to the challenges posed by workers. Marx's view of human nature and worker's needs was incomplete in the sense that it did not take into account the
hold of materialsm over the proletarian psyche, or the ability of trade unionism to ease tensions.
The problem is that we are not all proletarians, in the sense that Marx described it. My own study of Hinduism has led me to learn about the
, or Hindu caste system. The caste recognised the Sudra, (Marx' proletariat, or unskilled labourers) but it also recognised
the military, clergy/scientists, and businesspeople/farmers as well; and the major difference was, that it didn't view the Sudra as being victims of
the other three varnas, in the manner that Marx did.
The primary motivation behind Hinduism as a system is for people to reach a state of divine realisation. The Sudra or proletariat were considered to
be at the first level of said system, primarily because of the animalistic lifestyle that was usually associated with them. The system was not
intended to be as stratified as Indians later rendered it, however, but to allow people to progress through all four of the varnas.
The divisions also didn't exist in order to keep people down, but out of a recognition that said divisions existed within inherent human nature,
irrespective of whether they were recognised explicitly or not. As an example, members of the American Marine Corps describe membership of that
organisation as a calling. The caste system would have recognised that that genuinely was true, and that said individuals were members of the
Kshatriya (kings and military) according to their own nature
, as Lord Krishna put it.
As a result of not only my exposure to this system, but also negative (to the point of being literally almost lethal on a few occasions) direct
experience, truthfully one area where I do fundamentally disagree with Marxist thought, is the idea that the working class should be at the apex of
human society. At the risk of sounding prejudiced, I was raised to value my intelligence, and to believe that other people should seek to enhance
I do not believe that occupations which involve the neglect or decrease of human intelligence should be revered; but rather, if equality was to exist
in any form, that it should be in the sense that we all have the opportunity to improve and expand intellectually; and that to use Marx' own
vocabulary, if a point of equality should be established anywhere, it should be as bourgeoisie, and not as a universal reverence of the proletariat.
Apart from anything else, we are at a point technologically where the current psychopathic rulership of society are the only reason why any of us
continue to perform occupations which require less than human intelligence.
I am not a farm animal. I am a man; and yes, I do see that as meaning that I have greater developmental potential. For me, the single most
distressing aspect of Animal Farm, was not the depiction of Orwell's disillusionment with Communism, but how deeply appropriate the analogy of
agricultural animals was, in terms of Marx' apparent view of how human beings are to live.
I have known Marx' farm animals in real life. I have lived among the spiritual and intellectual brethren of Boxer. I have eaten with them, I have
drunk with them, and I have gone close to being murdered by them. I have never, however, in my own mind or soul, (or theirs) been
of them; and I know that the greatest service that I could render them, is not by debasing myself to their own level, but by assisting them in the
creation of a scenario where we can both ascend higher than we have ever been before.
edit on 24-3-2012 by petrus4 because: (no reason