I’m a Communist

Over the past few weeks as we have been studying Marx’s Communist Manifesto, I’ve been thinking about what it would be like to live in a Communist Society. In class, we had a discussion about whether or not Communism could ever potentially succeed. There were several arguments and different ways to look at it, but in the end, I think Julie and I were the only people who thought that Communism might actually be able to work. I was kind of surprised that no one else agreed. If you look back to the few places where Communism was enforced, it failed. But was it the Communism itself that failed or the insane leaders who took charge and killed millions of people? I think one of the reasons that nobody agreed with us is because they are scared of Communism and the terror associated with it. In theory, Communism could be really successful. As Marx explained many times, eventually, the proletariat will overthrow the bourgeoisie and Capitalism will end. It is inevitable. Anyway, what do you think? Will we ever live in a functioning Communist society?

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5 Responses to I’m a Communist

  1. Lisa Goldsman says:

    I have had similar thoughts regarding the benefits of communism. I think that the only and most prominent flaw is of course the radical leaders. When power hungry people are left with power and responsibility of other people’s lives, they do not always make decisions benefiting the whole picture. I also agree with Marx’s ideas on social class; having a single class, the proletariat, allows for people to receive equal rights. People in our society do things to mainly benefit themselves; acts of greed. If everyone was equal in social class there would be no reason to do things to better yourself, so it could eliminate greed, which could then eliminate the desire to be so power hungry. Personally, I think communism could work in a society which included, one social class, people who are in agreement with the ideas and boundaries of social class, and less greedy ‘leaders’.

  2. Dr. K says:

    It seems to me, Sophie, that you didn’t answer your own question, and I’d like to hear your answer: was it the Communism itself that failed or the insane leaders who took charge and killed millions of people? You seem to suggest it was the insane leaders, but is there something about communism that allows radical, crazy leaders to rise to the top, more than in other social-economic systems?

    • sophie says:

      Dr. K, I think Lisa answered my question. I was thinking the same thing. One of the only reasons, in my opinion, that Communism hasn’t worked out, is definitely because of the radical leaders who seem to have other motives besides living in a functioning society built around Communism. I don’t think having crazy, power-hungry people rise to the top and take over is a specific characteristic of Communism. I think that could happen in any society, including ours. It might be harder, but in theory, Communism does not make it easy for anyone to be a “leader.” For that reason, I think it was the insane leaders who failed to run society rather that the Communism itself.

  3. Dr. K says:

    I think you’re right that, in theory, Communism doesn’t make it easier for a power-hungry leader to come to power. But is there something about its implementation that makes insane dictators more likely?

    To be fair, the other evil dictator from the time, Hitler, did not arise out of communism, so perhaps the question is about what they have in common. Hard for us to answer, as we haven’t studied Hitler’s rise.

  4. Carrigan Miller says:

    A functioning communist society, in its truest form, can not work. The major failing of Marx is that he assumes, A) that everyone would eventually conform to communist ideals and B) people would be unable to sacrifice all of their possessions. Having things is a basic human desire, as it is how people have shown their self worth, even in caveman times. References to “property” are as old, if not older, than the Bible. Giving up such a huge part of human tradition would not be as easy as Marx seems to think it is.

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