Fred Reed peers at Marx In Disguise:
On the principle that leprosy is more fun if you understand why your fingers are falling off, permit me a few thoughts on Karl Marx, his witless theories, and our descent into a Disney version of them.
Marxism is a stupid, and almost comically wrong, hotchpotch of nonsense by a man who had little grasp of humanity, politics, or economics. He is an economist whose theories invariably lead to impoverishment. As a claim to greatness, this would seem defective. He is a major figure for the same reason that Typhoid Mary is — for damage done rather than intelligence exercised.
(Bear with me. This is not boilerplate denunciation of all things leftist. There is actually a point coming.)
Further, the errors of Marx were not of detail. They were fundamental. For example, he expected workingmen to unite. Instead, WWI showed that, with monotonous regularity (and perhaps questionable wisdom), their loyalty went to their countries. He thought that revolution would come in industrialized nations with suitable proletariats. Instead it came first in creaky agricultural countries, and never did come where he expected it. He thought that European economies would never give rise to the liberal democracies that seem today to be what everyone wants. They did.
In short, he was a crackpot. He was, however, either a crackpot who had correctly calculated the manipulability of the congenitally angry, or just lucky. No one, ever, has been responsible for as much death and brutality as Karl Marx. It wasn’t what he had in mind, not consciously anyway. But it is what he caused.
It is what Marxists always cause. With perfect predictability, Marxist states are police states. The chief trait of the workers’ paradise is that the workers all want to leave, and must be kept in with machine guns and land mines. In divided countries like Korea, we have what approach being laboratory experiments. South Korea is a high-tech industrial power. In North Korea, they eat grass and, occasionally, each other. If Korea is a geographical example, China is a temporal one: As soon as it began to abandon Marxism, it began to progress.
Marxism is a proven disaster. And Marxists know it. Elementary history is not a secret.
All of this would be of academic interest only, if the same spirit, under other names, were not so very active in America today. We see it in a variety of disguises. When Russia practiced censorship, we called it ” censorship.” Here, we call it political correctness. You still have to look over your shoulder before saying the wrong things. The difference is…what? In Russia, Marxists preached class warfare. Here they preach multiculturalism. The difference is…what? The Russians, unable to speak openly, passed around samizdat. We have the Internet. The difference, other than efficiency, is…what?