Wednesday, May 05, 2010


The impressively bearded fellow above is one Karl Marx, born this day 1818 in Trier, Prussia. As I stated in today's first brief post, I am not in the mood, nor do I possess the skill to do justice to my hero(es) of this particular day. We all should know Marx, we all should have read a least a little bit of or about him, we all think we understand more of him than we do. The one quote that I feel the most "connection" with by Marx is The history of all hitherto existing society is the history of class struggles." I like to think that I possess very little racism or sexism in my day to day thinking. I understand that a little bit of both of those unattractive qualities are probably unavoidable in today's society, but I do not doubt for a minute that class is the great divide, in my thinking, that separates modern society. The division between the have and the have nots is even greater today than it was in Marx's time. There may be, on average, more of the "haves" but the gulf between them and the "have nots" has widened considerably. Marx knew the have not life, he pretty much lived it the majority of his life. The hand to mouth existence that is the great struggle for a large part of the world's population during any given time, was familiar ground to Marx. I can not claim, with any conviction, to be living that type of life today, but there were times when hand to mouth was my existence as well. Looking back at those times, I have a tendency to think that perhaps I am a better person for that experience, but that could just be some sort of fucked up nostalgia for times past. I am pretty sure that at the time I was living this hand to mouth existence I was desperately hoping for my money ship to come in, and give me a better life. I don't pretend to be able to grasp 98% of Marx's thought, but I do know that he is probably one of the most misinterpreted thinkers of all time. He once proclaimed with firm belief that he was "not a Marxist." That little statement should tell you a great deal about the battle to interpret, and use Marx as a basis for all sorts of harebrained ideas, both political and economical. Next to that long biography of Kierkegaard on my bookshelf is an equally lengthy biography of Marx, this should tell you two things one, I read way too much, and two, you should probably look somewhere else for an in-depth analysis of Marx and his thoughts. This is about class, and don't be silly ALL things are, in my opinion, at their core about class. I am of the decidedly lower class, and live by the motto, stated more than once in this blog, of "once a prole, always a prole." A prole I was born, and a prole I shall die, just like it should be. I might be a comedy and an intellectual snob, but there is no upward, social movement in my future. A prole I remain, and in some ways that is fine with me. So, for showing us that "workers of the world" need to "unite, and cast off their chains," and that being a prole is not like being a leper, Karl Marx (May 5th, 1818-March 14th, 1883, at the age of 64), you are my (251st) hero of the day.

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