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Why are there still Marxists?

July 15, 2019
So many intellectuals still have a predilection for the Marxist doctrine. And I am struggling to understand on what basis. It was very popular with french thinkers in the post world war two era. And they transmuted it into some generic oppressor vs oppressed narrative. In some ways related to the work of the Frankfurt school thinkers, such as Marcuse, Adorno, Horkheimer and others. As an extension of their doctrines. The fact remains that Marxist thinking needs a proletariat. A working class proletariat, and there is no such thing as them in the western world anymore. This very conceptualisation is out of date and does not capture the new kind of crisis the western world is facing.
What we have in the west is an increasingly centralised, technocratic elite, finding ways to automate all our jobs, so that they get all the wealth, and so that we become dependent upon them for handouts. A bit like a new kind of serfdom. This is what it will be like when people are given a free basic wage, as is being tried out in some Scandinavian countries. The problem, for all its well meaning, good intentions, is that a people without work is a people without independence or dignity. The result is an inevitable encroachment on all aspects of their being. Until they have no means of self determination left in their life. Reduced to a pawn of various impulses. Activated in them at will by their puppet masters, the technocrats.
We see much of it already. A news story only has to hit people in the right “feels”, and they will emote and react as predictably as an automaton. Our battle is against this state of affairs. We don’t need to be wasting our time and our breath on outdated battles that only made sense in the world prior to the two world wars of the 20th century.
Our new elite handlers are very happy I am sure, to see masses of people fighting for the rights of a proletariat class of people, when such people don’t exist anymore! I expect they are equally happy to see people caught up on a narrative of being oppressed by oppressors, when this is perfectly conducive to inducing a victimhood mentality in people that becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.
There are no grounds for Marxism as a social or political theory. If you want to argue for socialism, you are going to have to find better economic and political support than marxist thinking. But, without Marxism, what does socialism offer other than a blind and bland distinction-less commitment to equality? Tinged with some emotive and moralising language directed against their would be “oppressors” here and there
Marxism was supposed to be an embodied revolution of the masses to lead to communitarian and socialist ends, nowadays it is no more than a complaint of oppression with no practical alternative offered for how to get out of that state of oppression. What once may have had some truth and life, is nothing more now than a hollowed out 19th century ideology.
Until the left can accept and come to terms with this failure, they will not move on, but will instead keep banging their heads against the same barrier. An ontological divide in reality that by believing in it, they made it real and made it impossible to overcome. And by and through which they are eternally oppressed.
  1. Because he was right.

    • No, James, I totally disagree. Where is the proletariat? When was the successful revolution of the proletariat? It never happened and they no longer exist. Perhaps we should think of more realistic approaches on the left, rather than staying attached to outdated nostalgic views such as this.

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