The Communist World

A few years ago, I was attempting to obtain a permit at a government organization that will not be named here, and after waiting in line for a good hour and a half I finally got my turn to take the test required. As I entered the testing room I was informed that I could have circumvented this entire process by mailing this office some paperwork earlier in the year. Now before I had the chance to inform the low-level civil servant in charge of the testing that I had been traveling and unable to send in the paperwork, he snorted and called me ‘stupid’.

Now I generally dislike being called that, but I had just waited in line for an hour and a half and all I wanted was to take the test and be done with it- chewing the guy out wouldn’t have gotten me out of there any faster. But more importantly than all that, I couldn’t help but pity the guy. He was in his late fifties, seriously overweight, in all likelihood suffering from a heart condition, and stuck- day in, day out- processing paperwork in a stuffy, crowded office.

I can’t help but feel that this wasn’t what he had planned on doing with his life.

Sure, there’s the off chance that when his pre-school teacher asked him as a child what he wanted to be when he grew up, he cheerfuly gurgled “I want to be a low-level civil servant doing a dull and repetitive job as I develop health issues while reeking of stale sweat and despair’, but I doubt this is what happened. And I can’t help but think to myself, maybe society could benefit more if this guy only processed paperwork every other Thursday, and spent the rest of the work week doing whatever he’s talented at. Maybe he’s brimming with raw, artistic talent- maybe he could be a concert musician who takes a couple days out of the month to process paperwork. Wouldn’t that be better not only for him but for all of us?

And then I think to myself, what if we applied that to everyone working a repetitive, dull, unskilled job? What if everyone took a turn filing papers, mixing cement, sweeper the streets, stacking boxes, or serving coffee? Wouldn’t thousands- no, millions of people suddenly be freed up to pursue what they were born to do- be it writing or teaching or studying medicine or astronomy or the like? Wouldn’t we be healthier, physically healthier as a society if we all did a share of manual labor? Wouldn’t we have a greater respect for each other if we understood what’s it’s like to scrub a mountain of dirty dishes or pick litter off the sides of the highways? The simple fact of the matter is that with everyone contributing, we would have a happier and more efficient society.

And this is what Communism is- the sharing of menial labor so that everyone can pursue the profession of their choosing. Classism, the separation and segregation of people based on wealth, falls to pieces. The need for an oppressed and exploited working class to support the luxuries of a decadent minority is gone with the creation of this new classless society. This, combined with the abolition of private property, creates a society free from the struggles between the haves and the have-nots- poverty and pointless excess become things of the past. In short- we have Marxism, a society of shared wealth, shared work, and a shared future.

And is it perfect? Of course not. People will always be people- greedy, xenophobic, deceitful, lazy, and irrational. There will always be crime, there will always be war, and there will always be corruption.

But hey- it still beats the system we have now.

2 Responses to “The Communist World”

  1. 1 marshak
    September 19, 2010 at 8:31 pm

    I’m a pretty liberal and social person to some degree. I’m not the biggest fan of capitalism all by itself. What i see looming is a world in which corporations are the government if we keep going this route. however, Communism for me has some serious flaws.

    For one, the fact that it hasnt been implemented yet without a substantial amount of corruption. Then you factor in the fact that it always ends up totalitarian and heavily military. The only real difference is in Capitalism it is made so prevalent by it’s sheer size and therefore importance to the republic as an industry. Too big to fail, if you will. In communism it seems to be an almost “crusade” like push to dominate as a means to persuade. Not exactly something i think is necessary.

    I havent seen communism that has not resulted in overt control yet. I mean i’m all for regulation, but where is the freedom. It’s one thing to have rules, its another to oppress, the line is fine I must say, but so far both systems dont inspire me. The Netherlands however seem closer to it. Free, no huge military complex, not invading everyone. But, they arent communist, their socialist. This more modern interpatation? I think the tax rate is 11%, but everyone pretty much happy. in polls people say oh, I’m free to live.

    I considered a merit system for along time. Perhaps if people could still be better than others BUT no one was actually unable to live poor, this could be a compromise. Install a level system. Janitors and bus boys etc on level 1. This gets you a reasonable car every so often, 3 years say. Repairs are always free. I’m talking the abolition of money altogether. To me, money was one of communism’s biggest mistakes.

    I can see though i’m jumping around to much. I want some people to discuss these things with, but cant find them.

    • 2 trotskyite
      September 21, 2010 at 2:12 am

      Granted, there have been some perversions of Marxism that masquerade under the facade of Communism (Stalin’s USSR, for example), but contrary to the route many so-called ‘Communist’ countries have taken, Communism is inherently opposed to totalitarianism. As far as the whole “crusade” bit goes, yeah, you’re correct that Communism is pretty aggressive in it’s attempts to export it’s ideology- but show me a system where this isn’t the case.

      Socialism is better than Capitalism- no Marxist is going to argue there, but when it comes to the constant battle between regulation and “free” trade, the regulatory government winds up becoming more and more powerful, bureaucratic, and top-heavy. Keep in mind that China, despite it’s Communist roots, is, in all respects, a Socialist country. Examples of Socialism in Europe- such as the Netherlands- look nice, but we have to keep in mind that we’re living in a globalized world. It’s not the case anymore that there’s a Dutch proletariat and a Dutch bourgeoisie, and a British proletariat and a British bourgeoisie- the world has become stratified. Europe and America act, on a global scale, as the universal ruling class while the third wold that makes up the majority of the planet’s population live in abject poverty. Socialism seems to work in the Netherlands, but the products being consumed in the Netherlands aren’t being made by Dutch workers. Look at the tags and you’ll see “Made in China”, “Manufactured in Indonesia”, “Product of India” and so on. The (comparatively) high taxes in Socialist countries merely act as a means of keeping the capital circulating within the country.

      In regards to your comment about money, I agree entirely. I wouldn’t call it the USSR’s biggest mistake, but it certainly doomed the chances of a Communist state in Russia from the start. Marxism isn’t supposed to be applied on a large scale- in fact, one of the tenets of Marxism is the abolition of state. Communism would end up looking a lot more like the Iroquois League than the Soviet empire.

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