by Mme. AF
A report I did on Communism for my World History class. Criticism appreciated!
As Europe transgressed through its Industrial Age, different concepts of economy evolved to meet the immediate needs. Two ideas stand out from the others. Capitalism and communism are common words to our language. Of course now, in the United States, the idea of communism is seen as morally bad. The truth is that what most Americans think of as communism is actually a misconception of the original thoughts of Karl Marx. Communism (an economic philosophy) is not the same as dictatorship, and it is in fact more effective than the capitalistic ideas we Americans have so fondly embraced.
Exactly what is communism? In his document “The Principles of Communism”, Frederick Engels states, “Communism is the doctrine of the conditions of the liberation of the proletariat”. In that sentence and further through the essay, Engels implies that in order for the proletariat to be free, the ruling class and all other class differentiations must be abolished. Proletariats (or Proles in George Orwell’s 1984) are the working class. They are the men and women at the bottom of the economic food chain, who do not have a sufficient amount of time to do anything other than toil endlessly for insignificant pay. With a caste system commonly seen in countries, the working class is exploited by those who have a substantial amount of capital and political influence. In the Communistic theory equality is reached and there is no tyranny.
Communism abolishes the ownership of public property. There would be financial equality for all citizens in a Communistic nation. The slogan adopted by communists was,"From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs". Children are also given equal opportunities in education. Youth grows into future workers for the country. More widely available education will stimulate the country’s economy, and eventually unemployment rates would decrease. There would be more brilliant minds working with new hypotheses and constructing new technology. People would choose their career paths because it interested them instead of entering into a job field simply because the pay is better. A person wouldn’t need to worry about a difference in pay in the higher paying job versus an occupation that they wanted to do because his or her pay check would be the same regardless of the work done.
Communism also changes the shape of human nature as we know it. In order for Communism to be effective, all members of the party must be above reproach and absolutely utilitarian. Every person must see the need, and want to work for the common good. If a person decides to go against the government and become greedy, then legal action must be taken. Said person would need to do something beneficial for the masses. Even a less virtuous man would eventually service the State because he will realize that his State can not become prosperous by any other way. A man commonly viewed by society as “bad” would change himself because he knows that in order to prosper; he must do his own share to benefit the population. John Locke solidifies this point with the statement, “The dread of evil is a much more forcible principle of human actions than the prospect of good.” Communism enables the preservation of the State, without greed blocking the way to ultimate freedom.
How can a person argue that communism is actually not beneficial to the federation? Opposition to the ideas of Karl Marx, Frederick Engels, and others could muster up many arguments to this cause. They would say that any attempt at Communism would end like the former Soviet Union. Today’s China is a prime example of the effects of Communism. The Chinese can not leave their homes without masks due to the enormous amount of air pollution. The communist society they live in demands money with little concern for the health, safety, and lifestyle of its workers. The factories are deregulated so that the maximum profit can be obtained. Workers are underpaid so that even more money is generated. Working conditions are poor. An anti-communist would ask how communism could be supported with these terrible truths.
A true Communism has never existed in our modern day society. The Soviets tried, the Chinese and Cubans are still trying. They are attempts at communism, and are in fact, absolute failures. In true communism, workers would not be oppressed as they are in Cuba or China. They would have equal control over their own lives. This is not the case in these countries. Workers are given little to live by and they have no control over communication and working conditions as they would in a true communistic civilization. The ideas of communism should be able to work, under an incorruptible ruler. The fact that the world has failed to produce a strong enough leader (and such a leader would need to be very strong indeed, to utterly resist all temptations of self-indulgence) does not mean that the world could not produce such a leader. There is a chance that a perfect communistic utopia will one day exist, but there is no hope for a capitalistic paradise.
Capitalism, a challenger would argue is a better form of economy because individuals are rewarded for extra work. This will cause a stimulus in the economy and a reason for the average person under a capitalistic rule to work harder. This ladder of advancement creates a great rift between economic classes. The rich become richer without any contribution to society due to processes such as money gain from interest and inheritance. Capitalistic society will eventually end in poverty being the only reality the masses can imagine, while a minority of the population will spend their time idle, and spend their money on frivolous items of no necessity. There can be no equality in a capitalistic society.