Do Barack Obama and Karl Marx Agree on Social Inequality?

Written by William Boetcker, often attributed to Abraham Lincoln.

By Brent Parrish
December 4, 2013

The president is slated to lecture the nation on “income inequality” today. This has been a constant theme from the left for many years now–the whole notion of inequality and fairness. But just what does the left mean when they speak of inequality and fairness? What does fairness mean to them? Inequality? How do they plan to address and rectify the whole issue of fairness and inequality?

The leftist view of “inequality” has been highly influenced by Karl Marx–which explains the left’s obsession with race, class and gender. If you don’t believe me, just Google “Karl Marx theory of inequality.” You will discover Marx’s theories on inequality and social stratification (i.e class) are central themes in many schools and universities across the nation. The class rhetoric we often hear from the liberal media and the political left all revolves around the Marxist view of “inequality.” The left’s focus on social divisions typically brings up the issue of “fairness,” since they are inversely related.

This begs the question, what is fairness? The Marxian socialist view of “fairness” is a world without capitalism–a society free of oppression, exploitation and inequality, according to Marxist theoreticians. It was Karl Marx himself who coined the term capitalism in his famous work Das Kapital. Marxism seeks to explain the existence and persistence of social inequalities around economic inequalities, and the relationship of individuals to the economic structure of society. The proposed Marxian solution to social and economic inequality is to redistribute wealth from the “haves” to the “have nots.”

Classic Marxists insist the so-called rich (bourgeoisie) are all exploitative–every one of them: the workers (proletariat) are used by their bosses and treated as wage slaves. For the devoted Marxist, there are no exceptions to this rather simplistic view on Western, industrialized society. The Marxian version of fairness circles around the notion that if the boss is making more money than the employee, the boss, in effect, is victimizing the worker–just like a brutal taskmaster would victimize a slave. By eliminating the bourgeoisie altogether, Marxists somehow believe a socialist utopia will be created from destruction and chaos–free of oppression, exploitation and inequality.

One of the reasons I have never been able to subscribe to Marxian socialist theory is that it targets and demonizes an entire group of people (i.e. “the rich, the haves”) as an “enemy of the state.” Furthermore, declaring “the rich” an enemy of the people is nebulous at best, and downright evil at worst. Just who are “the rich”? How much money or property must one possess in order to be considered bourgeoisie? It is an arbitrary division that changes, as the powers-that-be see fit. So one might argue that “fairness” evolves and changes over time, according to the whims of the left.

The other main issue I have with Marxian socialism: it is seemingly bereft of even the concept of morality. Marxists assume that should one be labeled bourgeoisie, one is automatically guilty of oppressing and exploiting the proletariat–the belovedunderdog.” I must ask, is that really fair? Is the assertion based in fact and reality? If one is considered guilty, they’re all equally guilty? Spread the guilt around?

Granted, there are certainly people who could be considered rich that are greedy and cruel, and oppress their own workers or employees. But there are also examples of wealthy individuals who are quite philanthropic and generous with their wealth, and treat their workers very well. Poor people do not typically create jobs and provide wages for other poor people, unless they like being paid in dirt clods and sticks. I could make the assertion that if all earned wages of sticks and stones it could be called fair; we’re all earning the same wage, right?

Change for change’s sake is nothing but folly if the only intent is to change things just for the sake of change. As a carpenter, I learned a long time ago that “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” When I see a group of people insisting on changing something that is not broken–like free enterprise, for example–I must look deeper at the underlying motives.

To me, Marxian socialism is all about power and control over the so-called masses. But there’s no such thing as a mass of people who organically and naturally congeal together in exact sameness–virtual automatons who will comply with ever whim of the state. The so-called masses are groups of people comprised of unique individuals. The Marxian view of fairness has nothing to do with altruism or benevolence, in my opinion … and I think the history of Marxism in the 20th Century will bear me out.

I also believe the 21st Century will bear me out, as evidenced by examining the records of Bill Clinton and Barack Obama. It is doubtful the president will mention the fact the “income gap” between rich and poor has widened under Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, especially with their rich cronies. Conversely, while the ultra-rich got richer, millions of Americans are living in poverty–currently at its highest rate since the 1960’s.

Despite all the flowery and contrary rhetoric we hear from the president and his minions concerning “leveling the playing field,” it appears the social divisions the left has promised to eradicate have only widened into chasms. Unfortunately, I suspect it will only get worse as long as large numbers of Americans buy into the Marxian version of fairness and inequality.

h/t: Gateway Pundit


About Brent Parrish

Author, blogger, editor, researcher, graphic artist, software engineer, carpenter, woodworker, guitar shredder and a strict constitutionalist. Member of the Watcher's Council and the Qatar Awareness Campaign. I believe in individual rights, limited government, fiscal responsibility and a strong defense. ONE WORD: FREEDOM!
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