Why can't pro-communist people simply accept that communism doesn't work?

Sep 2018
40
Sri Lanka
I have read that there argument is that "communism hasn't been fully tested"..... but how can you really test it?

Many people claim that there are many obstacles to it mainly that human beings are selfish and greedy and don't want to work for one another but still pro communist persist that it does.

Why? What makes it so hard for them to just let it go?

Is it pride?

Is it arrogance?

Is it the unwillingness to accept that they were wrong?

Is it fear of the consequences if they do admit that they were wrong?
 
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Oct 2018
1,209
Adelaide south Australia
Gee, big question.

The question contains some implicit assumption which may not in fact be true: That our capitalist system is somehow the only, or only correct economic model possible.

That our present system of fierce consumerism is also the right or only possible system.

That I, as an individual, should be willing to work for another. Ie let another have part of the results of my labour, or that I should be willing to share what I produce.. That accumulation of wealth is a good thing in itself.

Using greed and arrogance in an accusatory way is to make a value judgement we have no right to make. Not up to others, individually or collectively to decide how any individual should act. (as long as the group is not threatened)

The question presented is the same attitude used in Victorian England for the concept of 'the deserving poor', still used as the basis for welfare and charity in many societies, including our own.

Communism has not so far been tried as Marx envisioned. The notion of a classless society, with the ownership of the means of production being held by a group, seems impossible in an industrial society. The kibbutz system from from earliest modern settlement Israel is the closest to an exception I can think of. It was based on agriculture, not industry.

"A kibbutz(Hebrew: קִבּוּץ‬ / קיבוץ‬, lit. "gathering, clustering"; regular plural kibbutzimקִבּוּצִים‬ / קיבוצים‬) is a collective communityin Israelthat was traditionally based on agriculture. The first kibbutz, established in 1909, was Degania.[1]Today, farming has been partly supplanted by other economic branches, including industrial plantsand high-techenterprises.[2]Kibbutzim began as utopiancommunities, a combination of socialismand Zionism.[3]In recent decades, some kibbutzim have been privatized and changes have been made in the communal lifestyle. A member of a kibbutz is called a kibbutznik(Hebrew: קִבּוּצְנִיק‬ / קיבוצניק‬; plural kibbutznikimor kibbutz"

Kibbutz - Wikipedia

Some claim anarchic society is the ideal. All that means is no formal government. There are still rules and punishment for breaking rules. Some tribal societies are anarchic, such as the US plains Indians.Australian aboriginal society is over 50, 000 years old, and perhaps has the ideal social structure, true anarchy, without even having developed into tribes. That society is nomadic, with a Stone Age society based on the family group, of around 20 members

Anarcho-capitalism has been argued as the perfect form of social organisation. We opinion is that neither simple anarchy or anarchy-capitalims can work in a consumer society with a vastly complex division of labour.

I'm unable to think of a viable alternative to our present system of economic and social organisation. I suspect our system will last until well after I'm dead. However, capitalism will almost certainly eventually collapse as it is predicated on the notion of indefinite growth of markets, which are based on the exploitation of finite resources.

"Anarcho-capitalismis a political philosophyand school of anarchist thoughtthat advocates the elimination of centralized statedictum in favor of self-ownership, private propertyand free markets. Anarcho-capitalists hold that in the absence of statute(law by arbitrary autocratic decrees, or bureaucraticlegislationswayed by transitory political special interest groups), society tends to contractuallyself-regulate and civilize through the spontaneous and organic discipline of the free market (in what its proponents describe as a "voluntary society").[1][2"

Anarcho-capitalism - Wikipedia

See also 'The protestant ethic and the spirit of capitalism, by Max Weber.

The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism - Wikipedia
 
Jun 2017
2,988
Connecticut
I have read that there argument is that "communism hasn't been fully tested"..... but how can you really test it?

Many people claim that there are many obstacles to it mainly that human beings are selfish and greedy and don't want to work for one another but still pro communist persist that it does.

Why? What makes it so hard for them to just let it go?

Is it pride?

Is it arrogance?

Is it the unwillingness to accept that they were wrong?

Is it fear of the consequences if they do admit that they were wrong?
Honestly at this point "Communism has not been tested" and "Communism doesn't work" are both likely true statements that only are seen as contradictory because of the agenda's the people wielding them tend to have. Marx believed that society evolved from agrarian to industrial capitalist to Communist and that this was the natural progression of things, so for Marxism to be tested, a revolution would need to happen in an industrial economy where there were ",means of production" to re distribute. Of course Marxist revolutions have only occurred in agrarian societies, so yes Marxism has not been tested. It's actually the agrarian revolutionary's attempts to work around the lack of industrialization that have caused the largest share of the deaths associated with Communism(what do you think Stalin's five year plans were meant to do?). On the other hand, there have been so many successful Marxist revolutions(in terms of seizing power) and the fact that every single last one has been in an agrarian society and not one has succeeded in an industrial capitalist one makes the concept that Communism isn't possible the most likely possibility IMO.

At the end of the day it seems Marxist revolutions resonate more in agrarian society's that according to Marx aren't ready to have Communism and the countries that have the necessary conditions Marx describes haven't been dissatisfied enough for there to be a successful revolution. I think Marx's assessment of history before 1848 is pretty spot on and based on what he knew in 1848, his predictions make perfect sense. The century from 1848 to 1945 was far more dynamic and hard to predict than any of the centuries of this millennia which were relatively super stable by comparison and which were the era's Marx was making his predictions based on. At the end of the day I think the biggest single flaw in Marx's predictions was that he wouldn't have foreseen capitalists and even monarchists like Bismarck being smart enough to appease the working class with a social safety net and was making predictions about the behavior of industrial capitalists based on the previous behavior of the aristocracy . Marx's predictions were pretty reliant on the ruling class not appeasing the working class to prevent this outcome which historically was the logical prediction but was also wrong. The social safety net puts a basement on the amount of human suffering in society a basement that is probably the largest single factor in preventing successful Marxist revolutions. In agrarian society's where the rulers have tended to be less smart, Marxist revolutions and idea's have tended to thrive.

However elements of Marxism do still exist in society. Unions are basically workers councils(except they don't rule society) and some corporations like the NFL use a communist structure to distribute wealth(though the inequality there is an entirely different ball game than society) and Socialist parties were Marxist in the late 19th and early 20th centuries before they A abandoned revolution and B abandoned globalism(and by that I mean world without borders not what we have today).

Pro Communists are a pretty small minority relative to Socialists and Social Democrats and have been in most industrialized places for the last century. Socialism/Social Democracy largely took the movements air out of it's lungs and the Cold War in the US makes this doubly true. But yeah they have a point Marxism hasn't actually been tested and Marx's telling of human history does make sense and I agree with his telling of history(not his predictions) and could see why it's appealing to some. While my take on the last century is that all of these revolutions happening in the wrong circumstances add up to Communism as Marx described being impossible, I can see why other people would come to the different conclusion that Marxism just was unlucky especially if they are attached to the idea and they tend to see US containment as the main reason why(and while they have a point Marxist revolutions in industrial society's were failing decades before the Cold War and much of what is being referenced here are again agrarian countries). I tend to see their mentality as somewhat similar to Libertarians on the right where conspiracy's and paranoia are used as a justification for various inconvenient concepts(and ironically Communism and Libertarianism eventually end in the same place with no little to no government, so maybe there's something to that link).

What annoys me though is people taking Marxism being bad as evidence that Capitalism is good. IMO that's like testing a drug for a cancer and coming to the conclusion the cancer is good because the drug sucked. I don't think there are many other issues like capitalism and communism where people see the failure of one as the endorsement of another. Capitalism's failings don't mean Marx's predictions were correct because his predictions were about a specific outcome, likewise Marxism not being true doesn't mean Capitalism isn't horrible or has flaws because one replacement is a failure.

So to sum it up they are right, Communism hasn't been tested in the circumstances Marx said were necessary and while I think the rational response to that factoid is to come to the conclusion that there's a reason for that and it's very likely not possible, their response is to wait for it to succeed or fail in practice.
 

johnincornwall

Ad Honorem
Nov 2010
7,860
Cornwall
There's a whole generation or 2 that haven't lived through the times we have. It will be experienced all over again, wait and see.
 

janusdviveidis

Ad Honorem
Mar 2014
2,008
Lithuania
I repeated this many times already, Communism and planned economy might work. It was tested to some extent, but at the time we didn't have resources to make it work. What we have right now is much better computers and internet. These two things might make planed economy work. Actually with increased automation and constant lose of work planned economy might be the only possible way forward. Rapid expansion of population and consumerism might lead as to dead end very soon. Unless we manage somehow break out in to the Space some version of communism or socialism with planned economy and computers counting every calory could be the only way forward without majority of population dying because of limited resources.
 
Jun 2017
2,988
Connecticut
I repeated this many times already, Communism and planned economy might work. It was tested to some extent, but at the time we didn't have resources to make it work. What we have right now is much better computers and internet. These two things might make planed economy work. Actually with increased automation and constant lose of work planned economy might be the only possible way forward. Rapid expansion of population and consumerism might lead as to dead end very soon. Unless we manage somehow break out in to the Space some version of communism or socialism with planned economy and computers counting every calory could be the only way forward without majority of population dying because of limited resources.
Communism wasn't supposed to have a planned economy, especially long term. Marxist governments had a planned economy to compensate for Marxist revolutions happening in agrarian societies(because I don't think there's a revolutionary on earth who's going to stop rebelling because a book tells them they need to wait for their country to industrialize) and there being no "means of production" to redistribute". Different approaches to addressing this inherent inconsistency with the ideology these people followed is the reason there's so many "isms" associated with Communism like "Stalinism", Maoism"(insert generic Marxist leader here ism) etc. Of course every society has a planned economy to some degree, economic regulation, policy etc is economic planning, even if the government isn't doing the planning, major corporations certainly step in to plan sectors of the economy in certain ways that benefit them(I can think of several industries that do this off the top of my head), Marxist societies planned the economy in unusual, extreme, inefficient and in several cases deadly ways to achieve a radical long term result in a short time frame.
 

tomar

Ad Honoris
Jan 2011
14,062
Its a strange question

You might as well ask why religious people cant admit that God(s) does(do) not exist or more prosaically that prayers dont work....
 
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aggienation

Ad Honorem
Jul 2016
9,813
USA
Its a religion to them. They destroyed their old religions and just replaced it with new ones. Asking them to accept that communism is a fraud is like asking an ISIS member to admit that Islam is bogus. Its unrealistic to expect human beings, who have a desperate desire to believe in things bigger then themselves, to discard closely held dogma that supports their viewpoint on the world.
 

aggienation

Ad Honorem
Jul 2016
9,813
USA
I repeated this many times already, Communism and planned economy might work. It was tested to some extent, but at the time we didn't have resources to make it work. What we have right now is much better computers and internet. These two things might make planed economy work. Actually with increased automation and constant lose of work planned economy might be the only possible way forward. Rapid expansion of population and consumerism might lead as to dead end very soon. Unless we manage somehow break out in to the Space some version of communism or socialism with planned economy and computers counting every calory could be the only way forward without majority of population dying because of limited resources.
There you have it folks. Its for the good of humanity!
 
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