Tuesday, April 25, 2017
Section 10 Installment 1: The Communist Philosophy
When looking at political philosophy, the most interesting one to me is the Communist philosophy. The Communist philosophy was created by Karl Marx in his Communist Manifesto. The philosophy is also called Marxism. The Communist philosophy has ten essential beliefs in the platform: 1) abolition of private property, 2) heavy income tax, 3) abolition of rights of inheritance, 4) confiscation of property rights, 5) a central bank, 6) government ownership of communication and transportation, 7) government ownership of factories and agriculture, 8) corporate farms and regional planning, 9) government control of labor, and 10) government control of education.
The inspiration for all of these ideas came from world events like the Industrial Revolution which introduced capitalism to the world. Capitalism gave birth to people to make money and only increased the previous class system. This reinforced Marx’s idea that people should be on a fair and equal playing level. People were taking advantage of the lower classes in order to make themselves rich. Marx’s reasoning putting things in control of the government was because the people directly control the government. This would essentially put these categories into the hands of the people. Followers like Vladimir Lenin used tactics to over throw the Russian Tsar Nicholas II to implement the outlined beliefs of Karl Marx in the Communist Manifesto.
In 1917, Russia pulled out of World War I due to a revolution in the empire. The Bourgeoisie versus the Proletariats. This was also categorized as the Red versus the White. This philosophy inspired thousands to rise up against their government to take back power for themselves. Leninism developed from Karl Marx’s Communism. Lenin took over Russia after the revolution and implemented his style of Communism dubbed Leninism. His idea for creating a communist country was somewhat perverted from the original Communism idea.
After Lenin, Joseph Stalin took over the Soviet Union. Stalinism is a philosophy that is centered on policies of centralization, totalitarianism, and the pursuit of communism. Stalin locked in Stalinism from 1922-1952 when he ruled the Soviet Union as General Secretary. He made a culture using his philosophy that echoed a terror state. He implemented a personal cult culture in the Soviet Union that made him an idol to the people. He made Gulags that punished 22 million of his own citizens including his own son that died in a Gulag.
Philosophies can have an impact on peoples’ lives in different ways. Philosophies can brainwash civilians to carrying out atrocities. They can also develop on each other like Communism, Leninism, and Stalinism did. Communism was used to spark a revolution within the Russian people. What started out as throwing over a corrupt government and founding a Communist society and government, was manipulated into a totalitarian ruled regime that oppressed human rights, economic rights, and other freedoms. The power of a philosophy can uplift a culture or destroy a people. Personal thoughts and philosophies can be influential to people. The lesson to take from political philosophies would be to be careful what you believe and who you follow. Keep leaders in check because what they preach and how they act don’t always line up.
Here is a link discussing Stalinism and how it is being embraced.