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communism

Communism vs Religion and Culture

my dear friend is a Communist. a ‘marxist idealist’ she calls herself. we often have debates going on the matter; she was telling me that one of the policies of the Communist system is to discourage and get rid of all cultural and religious differences. this is done with the intent that it will create a higher level of peace between the many different peoples of the world if they have no such differences between them; wars over religion, culture and race will cease to be. i argue that although this may be true to a certain extent, religion and culture are too great a price to sacrifice. she asks me what kind of a hippie i am, that i would not consent to this for the sake of world peace? but i could not give this up, even for the sake of more peace. what would this world be without its differences?

thanks a lot for the time!
love,
–carolyn

This is a good involved question. In theory, the communist utopia envisioned by Karl Marx was a vast improvement over the impoverished conditions prevelant in the industrialized world in the early 1900’s. Indeed in Russia and China, the systems that existed prior to communism were very exploitive of the people.

The problem lies in the practice of communism because failable humans must setup the system and enforce it. The one thing that communism neglects to address is some of the most basic human traits including GREED (Capitalism certainly takes it into account). What happens is those who attain power within the system get corrupted – this is the truism; power corrupts, absolute power corrupts absolutely. In all the communists systems that have appeared on the planet, each has had an all powerful dictator to run it. So that means one person, and one person alone gets to decide what is best for the millions of people living in the system. And since that one person is corrupted absolutely, everyone has to bow to that person’s vision, whether they like it or not! And the usual penalty for opposition is either exile or death.

To make the communist system work, they must eliminate cultural, ethnic and religious differences. We see how it’s done today in Kosovo (Milosovich learned well as a communist). It’s been done in similar fashion in Russia and China. Not a very good system, in my opinion.

Hippies rejoice in our differences. We respect and celebrate diversity, it’s what makes life interesting. Imagine if you went traveling, and everywhere it was the same. The same dreary buildings, the same slogans on banners, the same language, the same mentality, the same laws, the same music for god’s sake! This is life under communism (yes I know capitalism puts McDonalds everywhere, but at least in France it’s not a big mac, its a Royale). Is this what we want our lives to be? If this is the price of peace, I agree, it’s far too high.

Once upon a time, the communist system in it’s idealized form was an improvement. But now that we’ve seen it’s limitations, we can bid it farewell. What we need is a new, better system, one that takes into account human nature, especially the need for self-actualization. This system should encourage individuals to expand their minds and talents. We have yet to do better than the ancient Greeks who gave us the radical form of government called democracy.

Now that technology has enabled us to all communicate efficiently, to be well informed, and to easily express ourselves we have available the means to achieve something far greater than ever before. We need only to organize this into a self-governing system, one that will totally replace the existing one. It’s already beginning, our only obstacle is removing from power those who place such a high value on it (power). I hope it will be an evolution, not a revolution, that will accomplish these goals.

In the meantime, wars over political, racial, ethnic, and religious differences will occur, perhaps even more frequently! It’s totally natural to remove competing genetic material, whether you’re human or bacteria (sometimes it’s hard to tell the difference). That’s the bottom line. Each person protects his own DNA, first starting with himself, his family, his extended family, the group he identifies with, his ethnic, or religious group, then his nation. It’s completely instinctual.

What we need to do then, on an individual basis, one person at a time, is come to an understanding that our entire race is facing a mass extinction if we don’t change our attitudes. Isms and differences between people only keep us apart if we let them. We must get beyond our FEARS or genetic bias, and realize that we are all the same. We need to recognize our common inheritance, this planet, as being a sacred place and start showing it some respect (Communists seem unable to do this).

I believe it is possible for people to get beyond their differences and to display a higher morality that respects all life. All it takes is a good example for people to see how easy it is to live in peace and harmony. All it takes is a hippy.

-The Old Hippy

Posted by: skip
Views: 24558
Topic:14

Marx & Communism

Dear Mr Hippy
Love the web-site, but there’s one small thing that I’ve just gotta
correct….

Communism is opposed to the state in any form – unlike your answer to the
‘Stinking Hippy says.

Marx never actually provided a blue print for how a communist community was
supposed to look like or how it was specifically to act. The big idea was
for people, who are all equal, to work together in a harmony that was absent
from any great overarching power (like when French students and workers took
over an area of Paris and created their own artisan style community in
protest against oppressive politics – your own fellow hippies!). By not
leaving a blue print, Marx thought that people would be able to create a
communist community free from the prescriptions of an antiquated era, that
people would eventually evolve away from capitalism once it had reached its
peek and instead search for a better way of living where there was no
discrimination based on material wealth, race, colour or gender (the sort of
equality of living that resembles Star Trek I guess, no ones got a higher )
Unfortunately, by not providing a blue-print he left his ideals open to
interpretation by some pretty nasty guys (i.e.. China, Russia, Serbia etc.).
But that’s the problem with art – it generally can be interpretated by
people in line with their own self interest.

Basically he just saw a lot of corruption, poverty, inequality, bulling and
unnecessary pain in the 18th Century ( very anti-hippy behaviour!) and
wanted to motivate people to change things. Unfortunately the world was
still quite barbaric in those days and so Marx’s revolution was portrayed in
a way that people could associate with – namely a bloody uprising (aka
Russia, French revolution, China, Serbia etc.). I think that Marx gets
picked on a bit too much – after all he was only a guy with a concept that
the world needed to be improved for the benefit of all. And that is
something that were all familiar with (and remember there were a lot more
scary people in history with worse ideals than that).

So fellow hippy – do not judge those who you have not met – and never listen
to gossip coz it poisons your head.

Peace, love and mushrooms
Sarah


Sarah,
What you are describing is more like anarchy than communism. Anarchy is anti-system, where as Marx just saw replacing one system with another. Much of Marx’s focus was on the economics of society, and even though he took a sociologist’s approach, he completely ignored human psychology (a new field at the time). And I was discussing communism in practice, more than theory. Communism in it’s pure form is something completely different, most closely resembling the communes of the 60s till the present. But just like chickens, humans tend to establish a pecking order which then invests more power in the hands of a few who then control the masses. It’s inevitable as long as humans remain self-centered and greedy.

By not providing a blueprint (which would always be unworkable anyway),
Marx copped out. He just put down the existing system without really
offering a viable alternative (as did many hippies). Fortunately many
hippies did explore alternatives, but these were limited to very small
communities of mostly like-minded individuals. And as you can see most of
these have failed for one reason or another. The only ones that remain are
those that launched capitalist enterprises that could bring in revenue
from outside the commune to keep it alive. And the politics of communes can
be just as fucked as those of the greater society. I know of many where the
leaders took advantage of their fellow communers, and exploited them –
these sometimes but not always had some kind of religious bent.

And if you think the world ISN’T barbaric anymore, you haven’t traveled
much, and aren’t keeping up with what’s happening in the world. In fact why
not look in your own backyard at the ANIMAL HOLOCAUST that is occuring just
for economic reasons. It’s completely unnecessary. This is capitalism
showing its true colors. Just wait until it’s a disease affecting humans.
You can expect a similar response. Unfortunately, THAT day is coming….

-The Old Hippy

Posted by: skip
Views: 13753
Topic:14

Confused about Communism?

Hey My Old Hipster!
I think it’s such a great thing your doing ’cause there’s so many
confused young hippies out there like me! I’m quite interested in communism but I
can’t quite make my mind up.I think I know the very basics ( equal rights,
power to the people etc) but I can’t figure much more out. You only get 2
types of info about it that which is too small (ie. encyclopedia) and
that which is too long (I read a book about Marx and just got so confused I
had to go for a smoke to clear my head!) I think it could be quite a good
idea.

If you could explain to me what the basics are so I can make my mind up
I’d be well chuffed! Also do you know anything about the Young Communists if
I like the idea I may join.

Cheers bro,
Peace, Love and Happiness
The Stinkin’ Hippy.

P.S. Why is it every one I know who smokes pot is a dick a bout it ( the
most get high must get absolutely wrecked on any manky shit in any manky
way in the same way as people drink to excess as appose to me who does it to
chill out listen to tunes and OPEN MY MIND, why can’t there be anyone cool
around?


Dear Stinkin’ Hippy
Once upon a time, many hippies embraced communism. It’s a great theory
proposing that everyone should have equal power and wealth. But that’s the
problem. It’s just an economic theory that lacks respect for individuality,
creativity, spirituality. By forcing people to conform, yield to the power
of the state, which then determines what’s best for you and everyone else,
you end up with the worse totalitarian systems. Don’t think so? Look at
the former Soviet Union, Red China, North Korea, even Milosovich’s Serbia.

The problems inherent in communism become apparent when power becomes
consolidated in the hands of a few. Power corrupts, absolute power
corrupts absolutely! That statement pretty much sums it up. In practice
communism concentrates all the power, thus corrupting those on top and the
whole system. The other failing is that humans aren’t just needy, they’re
GREEDY. The failure of the communist regimes was that those with the power
were the only ones able to satisfy their greed, while the rest could barely
meet their needs. So far from creating a worker’s paradise, communism in
practice was nothing more than a huge slave camp, with the workers toiling
away for the benefit of a few powerful comrades (party members).

Capitalism succeeds because it rewards any individual who contributes to the
system, regardless of their political status. It is caters to human greed
rather than ignoring it. So the more you work the more you prosper. Of
course those who refuse to contribute still expect to be rewarded, and can
get awfully upset when they don’t. But the real problem that inspired
communism is the exploitation of workers. And this persists under
capitalism, because the prevailing business model is one where executives
see maximizing profits as the holy grail. Thus workers are often paid a
poor wage, especially in third world countries, given as few benefits as
possible, and can be abused in many ways. This is a major failing of the
capitalist system and could be cured very easily.

Another big flaw is the exploitation of resources, and pollution of the
environment (the communists were REALLY good at this!). This problem is due
to the fact that the economics of diminishing resources, and the destruction
of ecosystems do not get factored into every Nike or Ford Expedition that
gets made. Instead the world is left absorbing that cost while reckless,
irresponsible businesses profit from it. This is because governments are
now beholden to the multi-national business interests that help the leaders
get elected. Politicians get pressured by lobbyists to allow them to
continue their exploitive ways. Again it’s individuals receiving bribes (oh
excuuuuuse meeeeeee…. campaign contributions) that make these decisions
that benefit corporate interests at the expense of their constituients (the
voters).

But your question was about communism, no? Forget it! And though
capitalism may be more successful, in the long run, it’s almost as bad.

And as far as smoking pot is concerned, the problem you mention is the
difference between use and abuse, respect for a sacred herb and disrespect
for one’s own body. There’s lots of cool people around, you just need to
find some new friends (perhaps some older ones).

-The Old Hippy

Posted by: skip
Views: 23949
Topic:14