[Marxism] why did Marx reject moral?

James Daly james.irldaly at ntlworld.com
Sat Oct 8 06:13:45 MDT 2005


Comrade Julius,

you wrote:
such state-doctrines as Che Guevara’s “don’t expect anything but 
sacrifices from socialism”, I find at least troubling. Don’t you think 
this call was meant to entail acceptance of the “broken eggs” that the 
Cuban revolution (for all its good sides) produced?

I was not sufficiently explicit in my use of the famous expression 
"You can't make an omelette without breaking eggs".  I meant the 
belief that the end justifies the means, which would be contrary to 
morality.  (In fact it is logically implied by Bentham's 
utilitarianism, but that is not adverted to by its popular followers 
nowadays).  That is why I referred to Machiavellianism, which I was 
taking as a logical outcome of any immoralism.  You seem to think that 
they are not connected, but I would like to hear on what grounds you 
think so.  -- My belief that the masses would not accept 
Machiavellianism is, I suppose, just an educated guess.

On "asceticism": it is Puritan rather than Catholic, and I share 
Marx's belief that communism would rather favour a cornucopia of many 
sided human development.  But the good life and a good time are not 
the same thing.  Your picture of the walkout by someone whose partner 
(rather, sexual object) no longer sexually arouses him/her suggests a 
pure hedonism which Marx explicitly rejected.

The heart of your position seems to be an argument derived from Marx's 
self defence against Stirner, a theorist whom anarchists still look to 
(along with Nietzsche).  Stirner, in defence of the idealist bourgeois 
possessive [existentialist] individualism of *The Unique One and His 
Property*, attacked Feuerbachian humanism as an idolatry of 
[essentialist] "Man", a sacred cause demanding devouement or 
sacrifice.  Marx's [materialist] reply was that bourgeois society 
demanded sacrifice -- e.g. thrift -- but that communist society would 
be a social structure which both expressed and enabled human caring, 
so that human beings need no longer be possessive individualists, but 
their natural concern for each other would be released.

During the time of struggle for such community, there is a necessity 
for dull drudgery such as Marx endured in the British library, or the 
inspiring nobility (Marx's word) of a Che Guevara.  When the 
revolution comes, we'll celebrate el Che's memory with a Fiesta.

Comradely, James

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Julius Wilm" <jwilm at ruc.dk>
To: "Activists and scholars in Marxist tradition" 
<marxism at lists.econ.utah.edu>
Sent: Friday, October 07, 2005 6:02 PM
Subject: Re: [Marxism] why did Marx reject moral?


: Dear James.
:
: I can not follow your argument, that because the a/immoral Marxist
: outlook has not attracted the masses, they hence(?) never will. In 
fact,
: I cannot see how visions for the future which base themselves on the
: present outlook of the masses, could see anything but conservatism 
ahead.






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