Skip to comments.White House Adviser Defends Class Warfare by Citing Karl Marx
Posted on 05/08/2012 2:09:04 PM PDT by Art in Idaho
Between things like Anita Dunns professed love for Mao Tse-Tung and the not-controversy surrounding the presidents new campaign slogan (Forward!), we suspect White House staffers are getting awfully tired of responding to questions about whether the Obama administration employs at least a few communist-sympathizing officials.
Rick Bookstaber, who currently serves on President Obamas Financial Stability Oversight Council, may have just kicked off another round of these questions.
Writing on his personal blog Monday, Boosktaber posted a refutation of conservative author Tucker Carlsons claim that, by repeatedly singling out the wealthy, Democrats are waging class warfare.
There is little that matches the artfulness of the rich in waving off criticism of the widening income gap as class warfare, Bookstaber writes. And there is little that matches the gullibility of the rest in following along.
I am not picking sides in this war, he added, but I believe such a war is justifiable, and indeed ultimately inevitable.
During the industrial revolution class warfare centered on the length of the working day. A tightly defined working day only appeared with the advent of the industrial revolution. Before then laborers worked when they needed money, and then quit for a time once they fulfilled their needs. But regimentation and a dependable workforce became necessary once there was machinery to run and capital invested, and so with industrialization came the an enforced workday. So it is not surprising that Marx stated the central battle of class warfare at the time in terms of the working day:
The capitalist maintains his rights as a purchaser when he tries to make the working-day as long as possible, and to make, whenever possible, two working-days out of one. On the other hand, the peculiar nature of the commodity sold implies a limit to its consumption by the purchaser, and the laborer maintains his right as seller when he wishes to reduce the working-day to one of definite normal duration. There is here, therefore, an antinomy, right against right, both equally bearing the seal of the law of exchanges. Between equal rights force decides. Hence is it that in the history of capitalist production, the determination of what is a working-day, presents itself as the result of a struggle, a struggle between collective capital, i.e., the class of capitalists, and collective labour, i.e., the working-class. Marx, Das Kapital
Karl Marx, of course, is most famously known as the father of communism. His political philosophy was adopted and implemented by infamous dictators including Vladimir Lenin, Mao Tse-Tung, Joseph Stalin, Pol Pot, Ho Chi Min, Fidel Castro, and Che Gueverra whose search for the perfect collectivist society led to the deaths of approximately 100 million people, according to the historian Stéphane Courtois.
Another wonderful product of 20+ years of American education. Tell that to the pre-industrial farm workers who worked from dawn till dusk during the planting and harvesting seasons.
...and tell me again why so many FR-conservative-Romney haters will not be voting? To protect their principles? RINO or whatever else you hate about him, Romney would not be surrounded by commies and socialists.
“When I think We the Taxpayers are paying the salaries of all these Marxists, I just cringe.”
Well then don’t go near your nearest University either, then.
The more “elite”, the greater the thieving pathology.
True. Moreover pre-industrial craftsmen didn’t stop working once their “needs were met”. They kept working to make extra to save and invest, and hopefully pass on to their children, something Marxists hate.
That is just foolish to not vote.
The question remains, will the Romney campaign have the guts to call them Communist?
And would viable charges of being Communist still have any impact with the sheeple?
Voting for someone with no chance to win is just a way to not make an unpleasant choice while feeling good about yourself. The only way your vote can make any difference is if Obama squeaks by in a close one. Just ask FL Ralph Nader voters.
Marx begins with an acknowledgement of the perception of rights on the part of both the capitalist and the laborer, but then argues that the question of the length of the working day cannot be solved by an appeal to rights, but only through class struggle, wherein force decides between equal rights. (Force can mean physical force, but can also mean the force of the political process).
The central point is that there is no way that this question of the working day or any number of other social questions, though posed as rights by the groups in conflict, can be resolved without being reformulated in terms of class struggle or class warfare. Unlike civil rights the rights which our society regards as inalienable it is difficult to do much more than simply take sides when it comes to economic rights, because what we call economic rights are really nothing more than the bargaining in an exchange between those providing labor and those providing capital, those creating jobs and those taking the jobs, or whatever. There is class warfare because the social and economic pie has to be split, and there is no objective way to do so. The war can be active or passive, the sides can have a truce, one side can temporarily be resigned to its lot or be held in check through force, but the conflict never ends. A change in generations or in social consciousness, and things will flare up again. There are some areas of fairness in the civil sphere freedom from slavery, torture and piracy but what are the rights inherent for a particular term of exchange between the parties in a trade?
totally looks the part of a blowhard stooge.
They just don’t even care anymore to hide it. They just hope that the conservatives hate Mitt too much to vote for him and the rest don’t know who Karl Marx is.
Backstabber would be a better name — he’s backstabbing the United States of America.
But I'm not voting for Romney....
’There is little that matches the artfulness of the rich in waving off criticism of the widening income gap as “class warfare,”’ Bookstaber writes. ‘And there is little that matches the gullibility of the rest in following along.’
‘I am not picking sides in this war,’ he added, ‘but I believe such a war is justifiable, and indeed ultimately inevitable.’
So there is a war. Why, then, the scare quotes, and why the suggestion that it’s rich people’s “artfulness” to claim there’s a class war? Ah, I see, it must be the waving off part. The rich have been successful at defining “class warfare” so as to be something that’s easily waved off. And so it is; not because it’s frivolous—though it can be—but because everyone knows how bad it is and to what bad places it leads.
Also, forget about Marx. Forget about how you could possibly not pick sides when you say class warfare is “justifiable” (how would it be justifiable if the rich were to win? Wouldn’t they be in the same place they were when the war began?) It’s impossible to swallow his claim of not picking sides when he starts by chiding the rich.
They had to publish a whole magazine issue to unite the M-L-Ms with the M-Ls? Gosh, I love leftist infighting.
POTT! (Post of the thread)
You forget that Marxists care not about what is, but what fits their “science.” They cannot even admit that one farmer saved anything whatsoever, for the implications that would have for the formation of capital. Capital has to be stolen, and profits derived therefrom expropriated. We can’t have any such thing as people who are not feudal lords or, what is the same thing, capitalist pigs retaining more than they need that second, or what isn’t redistributed to the community on the basis of need.
It’s gotta all be, between ancient communism and the proletarian millenium to come, those producing either making only what they6 need that second or having it stolen by their evil, greedy, material-bound overseers.
Anybody (and I mean anybody) who enables the traitorous bastard, whether through action or inaction, is the same.
My bro just told me the same sentence! They're getting more confrontive every day. .
“The only way your vote can make any difference is if Obama squeaks by in a close one”
The only way my vote can make a difference is if both: A) Romney wins Minnesota by a single vote, and B) Minnesota’s vote make the difference in the electoral college. In other words, when pigs fly.
“Just ask FL Ralph Nader voters.”
Notice the all-important “s” after “voter.” I hate how people are always trying to convince me that my vote is important and that I must vote for one of the two parties based on the fact that collections of votes matter. Well, duh, but mine doesn’t.
There’s no reason, anyway, that I need to make the “unpleasant choice” just because only a Republican or Democrat can win. So what? Why do I have to vote for someone who has the potential to win? That’s like saying I should have voted for Obama in 2008 because he was going to win. Why does my tally have to go on the winning side? What’s the point?
Voting, so far as I can tell, is an empty ritual for the individual, who except in the remotest of cases cannot possibly make a difference. It matters only for large chunks of people, who you may have noticed are not individuals. I go through it for the heck of it. Don’t try to tell me I have to vote any which way in pursuit of any which outcome. That’s stupid.
Rights do often conflict, but that’s just a matter of speaking. What actually happens when rights confront eachother is that one loses and one wins. When my fist hits your nose my right to swing my arms does not confront your right to not be punched. What actually happens is that there is your right not to be punched and my nothing. There is no right to swing where your nose is, and therefore no right on my end.
No such thing as equal and opposite rights exists. What Marx needed to understand, though it’s too late to teach him, is that there was no right to a shorter work day. There were property rights, association rights, contract rights, etc. and nothing else. There is no right to enter another man’s property and be paid for as long as you want to stay there regardless of how long the employer wants you there.
Oh yeah, right, Romney has no chance to win. He’s ahead in national polls, in swing state polls. He leads independent likely voters 48% to 32%, and the indecideds almost never break for an incumbent. Obama’s personal favorability has dropped below 50% for the first time, and his fundraising is down. Romney will raise more money than Zero, and hss proven he can put together a well run national campaign. Add high gas prices, unemployment and a million new forclusures this year. Truth is the most likely result is a Romney landslide. So your ineffectual third party protest vote probably won’t matter to anyone but you, unless as I said, Obama squeaks though in a close one that includes winning your state.
“Unlike civil rights the rights which our society regards as inalienable”
Only natural rights are inalienable. Civil rights are those which are provided to you only in civil society, and as such can be taken away from you. For instance, if you leave civil society, if you are perceived to sufficiently transgress against it, or if civil society breaks down and nature takes over again.
That's a great point. Why vote ever?
“That’s a great point. Why vote ever?”
Like I said, for the heck of it. That’s why I do it.
I realize you’re being facetious, but seriously think about it. Why do we vote? Not because our votes count, as clearly when the election is decided by a margin larger than one vote—whihc is evewry election—it doesn’t. So why do people vote? To be part of blocks. Collectively, votes do count, and people like to be part of groups.
So that’s why. Just don’t pretend like it matters how I vote individually. I hate that.
“it’s quite possible that the margin of victory could be less than the fraction of one percent the fringe party candidate will get”
Possible, okay, but that’s still a collection of votes. I get why you’d wanna convince people that their vote makes a difference based on how groups of votes make a difference and groups are made up of individuals. But don’t do it by pretending individuals make a difference, because they don’t, not even in that example.
It's also funny that he was designing derivatives before the bust. He's probably much more of a "1%er" than anybody.
Then keep your smug self-satisfaction to yourself, go off in a corner and pat yourself on the back.
All that you are doing here is sowing discord.
Either you are for Obama and what he is trying to do to America, or you are against him.
There are very few ways to stop him. The least painful will be at the ballot box in November.
Think seriously about what you are doing AND advocating.
N.B. I do not like Romney. My preferences were Palin, Cain, Gingrich, in that order. If Romney had a lick of sense, he’d pick Rep Allen West as his V.P. Unfortunately, neither Romney nor the GOP seems to.
The Socialists Despise Mankind
According to these writers, it is indeed fortunate that Heaven has bestowed upon certain men governors and legislators the exact opposite inclinations, not only for their own sake but also for the sake of the rest of the world! While mankind tends toward evil, the legislators yearn for good; while mankind advances toward darkness, the legislators aspire for enlightenment; while mankind is drawn toward vice, the legislators are attracted toward virtue. Since they have decided that this is the true state of affairs, they then demand the use of force in order to substitute their own inclinations for those of the human race.
Open at random any book on philosophy, politics, or history, and you will probably see how deeply rooted in our country is this idea the child of classical studies, the mother of socialism. In all of them, you will probably find this idea that mankind is merely inert matter, receiving life, organization, morality, and prosperity from the power of the state. And even worse, it will be stated that mankind tends toward degeneration, and is stopped from this downward course only by the mysterious hand of the legislator. Conventional classical thought everywhere says that behind passive society there is a concealed power called law or legislator (or called by some other terminology that designates some unnamed person or persons of undisputed influence and authority) which moves, controls, benefits, and improves mankind.
Frederic Bastiat 1801-1850 (he had their number before the communist manifesto was published...and given the recent election in France...he must be spinning in his grave...again)
Property rights. "Captialist" A has a right to his property, his investment. "Laborer" B (I don't even like premising these comments in Marxist terms, its icky) has a right to work, or not. His self-possession, if you will. The two enter into contract, and then at the end of the term, the work performed or the widget manufactured is the property of Capitalist A, and the $$ or barter exchanged for the labor is the property of Laborer B, per the terms of the contract. And everyone's rights are intact.
Is that difficult, or am I missing something?
This is Obamas governing principle. If you need something the government will provide it to you. If you have more than you need it is the governments purpose to take it from you and give it to the people who do need it. Obamas philosophy is stated in the opening seven words of Marx quote.
The inherent paradox in this statement and subsequent lack of incentive should have been blatantly obvious to 'the intellectual' Marx. Did he ever hold a job? Also, who decides who has ability and who needs what. I've always thought it was such a big government statement fraught with ultimate chaos and failure.
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