Published On: Thu, May 3rd, 2018

Karl Marx’s birthday celebrated by NY Times, links #MeToo, Black Lives Matter to Marxism

Kyung Hee University associate philosophy professor Jason Barker wrote an op-ed for The New York Times recognizing the anniversary Karl Marx’s birthday. It’s titled: “Happy Birthday, Karl Marx. You Were Right!”

According to Barker, Marx was filled with “boundless intellectual enthusiasm,” later adding that “Today the legacy would appear to be alive and well. Since the turn of the millennium countless books have appeared, from scholarly works to popular biographies, broadly endorsing Marx’s reading of capitalism and its enduring relevance to our neoliberal age.”

Barker states that Marx was right that “capitalism is driven by a deeply divisive class struggle in which the ruling-class minority appropriates the surplus labor of the working-class majority as profit.”

Daily Wire’s Ben Shapiro:

“…this is idiotic. Unless Marx could show involuntary removal of labor by the upper classes, there was no basis for the accusation of labor ‘appropriation’; that case still can’t be made in a free and open society. And as for Marx’s ‘prescient … conviction that capitalism has an inbuilt tendency to destroy itself,’ that conviction isn’t prescient — it’s just true that Left-wing intellectuals have ginned up opposition to the free exchange of goods and services for political benefit.”

Back to Barker: “Racial and sexual oppression have been added to the dynamic of class exploitation. Social justice movements like Black Lives Matter and #MeToo, owe something of an unspoken debt to Marx through their unapologetic targeting of the ‘eternal truths’ of our age. Such movements recognize, as did Marx, that the ideas that rule every society are those of its ruling class and that overturning those ideas is fundamental to true revolutionary progress.”

National Review countered: “Marxism now seeks a revolution of the victims — the various groups of dispossessed who feel that the system has been stacked against them. And it is far easier to unite such groups around intersectional themes than it is to unite them around income disparity. There may not be any serious brotherhood between those who don’t earn much money, but pure tribalism forms lasting ties — and Marxists are happy to mold those tribes into a new nation of rebels.”

Back to Shapiro: “In other words, you’re not an individual — you’re a widget created by the system. And enlightenment thought can’t free you from your widget-dom — only destroying the prevailing structure can. Identity politics can be the tool for destroying the system that robs life of meaning:

We have become used to the go-getting mantra that to effect social change we first have to change ourselves. But enlightened or rational thinking is not enough, since the norms of thinking are already skewed by the structures of male privilege and social hierarchy, even down to the language we use. Changing those norms entails changing the very foundations of society.

“This, of course, is where the dead bodies come in. It turns out that human beings aren’t widgets. They do have the capacity to choose, and they do have the ability to reason. And treating everything you don’t like as a symptom of a system of oppression leads you to treat individuals as either tools or obstacles to utopia. Marx knew that and didn’t care. Neither, apparently, does Barker.”

He concludes here: “No, Marx wasn’t right. But the Left will never let him go, because he offers the only true alternative to the religious view of human nature — the view of man that says he is not a blank slate, not an angel waiting for redemption, but a flawed creature capable of great things. To achieve those great things is hard work. To change ourselves on an individual level is hard work. To spout about the evils of society — that’s certainly easy enough.”

Shapiro also listed some classic articles from the Times like “When Communism Inspired Americans,” “Socialism’s Future May Be Its Past,” and “Why Women Had Better Sex Under Socialism.”


This Newsweek cover caused a stir over socialism, but the new rhetoric may be even scarier

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About the Author

- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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