5 May 1818 - Karl Marx is born - Birth of a Legend or Spawn of the Devil?

Catalpast

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200 years ago today Karl Marx was born in Trier Germany into a solid Middle Class family of Jewish background

While the Marx Family was comfortably well off he himself never really settled at anything and drifted into Revolutionary Politics

A wise fellow he chose to wage Revolutionary War with the Pen rather than the Sword or the Musket.

All this spilling of ink got him into trouble with the Powers that be and eventually he ended up in London where he and his family ended up in poverty due to his chronic unemployment

He is of course best known for The Communist Manifesto that he wrote with Frederich Engels and his latter monumental but virtually unreadable work Das Kapital.

An intelligent man no doubt but one with very little experience of life outside the closed circle of revolutionary politics

Today he is considered one of the Great Men of History

Some admire him

- others loath him.

But no one could deny his influence for better or worse on the Modern World


Karl & Fred
 
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Gin Soaked

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Middle class, entitled, intelligent, lazy, feckless.

Communism suits these people's morality perfectly.

Like Bin Laden, he was a spoilt inadequate. Who succeeded beyond his dreams when others took on their ideas.

And millions suffer.
 

Sheeple_Waker

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Marx was an interesting character and not one whose ideas can be so neatly pigeonholed. While his ten programme points in the Communist Manifesto contain elements like a ‘land army’ which are clearly conducive of totalitarian thought, by the end of his life he had changed his positions somewhat, for instance agreeing that the ‘mir’, the peasant communes in Russia, offered an alternative path for socialism in that country which was somewhat at odds with the later Soviet emphasis on forced industrialisation.
 

RasherHash

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200 years ago today Karl Marx was born in Trier Germany into a solid Middle Class family of Jewish background

While Marx was comfortably well off he never really settled at anything and drifted into Revolutionary Politics

A wise fellow he chose to wage War with the Pen rather than the Sword or the Musket.

All this spilling of ink got him into trouble with the Powers that be and eventually he ended up in London where he and his family ended up in poverty due to his chronic unemployment

He is of course best known for The Communist Manifesto that he wrote with Frederich Engels and his latter monumental but virtually unreadable work Das Kapital.

An intelligent man no doubt but one with very little experience of life outside the closed circle of revolutionary politics

Today he considered one of the Great Men of History

Some admire him

- others loath him.

But no one could deny his influence for better or worse on the Modern World

Legend.
 

O'Quisling

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Karl Marx was critical of the secretive, paranoid, highly-charged politics that is attractive to (predominantly) young men and often merely runs into the sand.

His opinion on the IRB bombing of Clerkenwell in north London is insightful.

The last exploit of the Fenians in Clerkenwell was a very stupid thing. The London masses, who have shown great sympathy for Ireland, will be made wild by it and be driven into the arms of the of the government party. One cannot expect the London proletarians to allow themselves to be blown up in honour of the Fenian emissaries. There is always a kind of fatality about such a secret, melodramatic sort of conspiracy.”
- Karl Marx writing to Frederic Engels in December 1867
 

raetsel

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Birth of a Legend or Spawn of the Devil?
Neither, I'd say. His big idea was wrong, but it was well intentioned, conceived as it was to address the often unforgivable social conditions of the majority of people in Europe which were normal everywhere at the time, and which he witnessed at first hand.
The consequences of his theories in the Soviet bloc over the 70 years of communism were often horrendous, but also led to the defeat of Naziism - it's doubtful if a Czar led regime in Russia could have achieved that.
Secondly the fear of what happened in Russia in 1918, as a consequence of his ideas spreading, arguably helped considerably in eliminating a lot of dreadful social injustices in the states of western Europe which were rife in the early 20th century.
But for anyone still wedded to the notion that Marxist ideas could ever be made to work, a few days exploring the former eastern Bloc states, beyond their deceptive, prosperous city centres, should disabuse them of the idea pretty quickly.
 
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paddycomeback

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I think some people are incapable of separating Marxist theory from a loathing of Russians, Chinese and plebs.
Marx didn't see the magical powers of fiat currency we now have, so it looks like his theory was wrong. But to use him as a cipher for racism and classicism and not judge him as another thinker like Locke, Hegel or Smith has to be wrong too.
 

gerhard dengler

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The political systems derived from his writings, have all proven to have utterly failed from a lesser to a greater degree. I cannot think of one single territory, which embraced "Marxism" which went on to improve the lot of even a small majority of its people.
 

shutuplaura

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Did he advocate gulag, secret police, the deliberate use of famine as a policy of state? I don't think so but i am no student of his. I think he was reacting to the terrible social consequences of industrialization in the 19th century. His idea did cause some to commit unspeakable things, but they led to the western European benign welfare state too.
 

redhead

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I think some people are incapable of separating Marxist theory from a loathing of Russians, Chinese and plebs.
Marx didn't see the magical powers of fiat currency we now have, so it looks like his theory was wrong. But to use him as a cipher for racism and classicism and not judge him as another thinker like Locke, Hegel or Smith has to be wrong too.
And without his existence we wouldn't have the bogeyman of "cultural Marxism" that unifies the disparate right lunatic fringe.
 

stakerwallace

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Mark was related through his mother to Phillips engineering, a company still in business in the electrical sphere.
 

_FARAH_

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Carl MArks can only wash my car, if I had any.
 

milipod

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200 years ago today Karl Marx was born in Trier Germany into a solid Middle Class family of Jewish background

While Marx was comfortably well off he never really settled at anything and drifted into Revolutionary Politics

A wise fellow he chose to wage War with the Pen rather than the Sword or the Musket.

All this spilling of ink got him into trouble with the Powers that be and eventually he ended up in London where he and his family ended up in poverty due to his chronic unemployment

He is of course best known for The Communist Manifesto that he wrote with Frederich Engels and his latter monumental but virtually unreadable work Das Kapital.

An intelligent man no doubt but one with very little experience of life outside the closed circle of revolutionary politics

Today he is considered one of the Great Men of History

Some admire him

- others loath him.

But no one could deny his influence for better or worse on the Modern World

I prefer Groucho.
 

silverharp

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still waiting for his call that capitalism would fail. as a family man he sucked, only 3 of his seven kids made it to adulthood
 

Sheeple_Waker

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still waiting for his call that capitalism would fail. as a family man he sucked, only 3 of his seven kids made it to adulthood
To be fair infant mortality and life expectancy were very different in those days.
 


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