Archive for the ‘Marxism’ Category

We Never Meant to Have Socialism

I did a little bit of research on the origin of the oft-repeated phrase: “From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs”

A slogan popularized by Karl Marx in his 1875 Critique of the Gotha Program. The phrase incorporates the ideal that, under a communist system of government, every person shall produce to the best of their ability in accordance with their talent, and each person shall receive the fruits of this production in accordance with their need, irrespective of what they have produced. (source: Wikipedia)

But it gets better, this is the paragraph containing the famous words:

In a higher phase of communist society, after the enslaving subordination of the individual to the division of labor, and therewith also the antithesis between mental and physical labor, has vanished; after labor has become not only a means of life but life’s prime want; after the productive forces have also increased with the all-around development of the individual, and all the springs of co-operative wealth flow more abundantly — only then can the narrow horizon of bourgeois right be crossed in its entirety and society inscribe on its banners: From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs!

Now let’s check:

  1. after the enslaving subordination of the individual to the division of labor, [and also] the antithesis between mental and physical labor, has vanished
  2. after labor has become not only a means of life but life’s prime want
  3. after the productive forces have also increased with the all-around development of the individual
  4. and all the springs of co-operative wealth flow more abundantly

only then [can] society inscribe on its banners: From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs!”

So, after we’ve done away with the division of labour, after we seek labour not just as a means to an end, but and end in itself, after wealth overflows in abundance (think rivers of milk and honey), ONLY THEN can we follow that tenet. Only then can we have Socialism.

It’s nice to know Communists didn’t mean implement their ideas too soon. Someone should have took this matter to the attention of the Soviets. 100 million people later, maybe someone will have the good sense to listen to Marx.

To end this on a good note, you can have a look at one of Franc’s latest article. In which he delves deeper into some of the incentives associated with Socialist systems.

Have a nice day.