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hey internets here's an interesting question you may have heard about the concept of Class Warfare, or the idea that there exists different classes of people;
that those in one class exploit and take advantage of the other;
and that the history of humanity is a history of this constant struggle between the class of honest people and those who are in an exploitative class whose incentives lie in trying to control the others, often with varying forms of coercion.
This type of thinking is generally attributed to Karl Marx and his theories of class conflict and exploitation.
The question is this: What if Marx was actually correct about both of these things but fundamentally wrong on just what specifically classes are, and how the process of economic exploitation really operates?
Let's now do a quick dive into Marx's theory of class conflict and identify what is wrong with it.
Marx saw a class based on a person's relationship to the means of production. In other words whether or not they own the stuff that is used to make more stuff. This is an oversimplification but it's close enough, with said owners being referred to as the bourgeoisie class and those who own land as landowners and those who only have their labor being the proletariat.
To simplify this imagine a cereal making factory which produces delicious but terrible for you sugary cerno flakes owned by Marissa and a bunch of plebbiters.
As members of the proletariat the plebs here only have their own labor to sustain themselves and thus they must sell that labor to Marissa while working in her Factory. The plebs produce 500 worth of cerno flakes each day but Marisa only pays them 200 for their full day of labor. After another 200 costs of production are accounted for Marissa is pocketing the remaining of 100 as profit.
According to Marx this one hundred dollars should rightfully belong to the workers and not Marisa as it is value extraction of the product of their labor which they refer to as Surplus Labor Value. In simpler terms Marx argues that the difference between the value of what the proletariat laborer made and how much the Bourgeois owner pays them is theft. This is the basis of Marx's Exploitation Theory. Communists will also argue that since in a capitalist society the workers are not allowed to simply take back this Surplus, the relationship between them and the owner is a course inherent combative one since the owner wants to maximize profit by paying the workers less while the workers always want to make more.
This difference in interest creates a class conflict.
Alll of this is an oversimplification but if you have read any leftist Theory or watched any common videos on the subject you'll quickly find out that this is pretty much how it goes.
So then what are the flaws of Marx's Theory?
Well the answer to that can be found by asking yourselves this simple question: Just where do the means of production come from?
Anyways let's say one of these plebs, let's just call him Bob, besides that they are going to stop whining and actually do something about their situation so he decides to stop buying pumpkin spice lattes from Star Cuts every day with the other plebs as well as other Cuts until he is saving about 25 percent of his wages which after about five years he is then able to open his own business which produces pumpkin soy. I mean what else did you expect?
Anyways in terms of Marx's Theory Bob is now the owner of a means of production. Let's break down the requirements of what he did to achieve this.
Well first off is the difference in time preferences, is the other plebs would rather enjoy the instant gratification of lattes every day rather than investing their money in future endeavors. And to some degree this makes sense because tomorrow is uncertain when given the choice of being given one grand a day or being given one grand a year from now just about every sane person will choose to be given that one grand now this is because time itself is limited and thus has value, which is why in reality safe Investments generally will pay you more for waiting which explains why things like capital investments or certificates of a deposit and various forms of investing exist and why people will pay you for your time.
In this way there is also the simple fact that Bob is taking a risk with his product: what if no one wants to buy his product? Bob has to hire some plebs of hiis own to help produce in his Factory and while they are getting paid regardless of whether or not the pumpkin soy sells Bob really only makes money if consumers decide his product is worth their money to part with it.
This is where we start to see the real relationship between owner and worker. The so-called labor Surplus can just as easily be seen as the worker paying the owner for their time and risk investment, it is in fact a mutually beneficial and voluntary transaction where time and risk are being traded for steady guaranteed immediate wages.
Therefore Marx's theory of class and exploitation doesn't make any sense because it fails to account for this value of time and it also fails to properly understand how time can be traded. The absence of this critical component of Economics in Marx's theories completely ruins the basis of his thought process hence why he reaches such absurd conclusions in his class and Exploitation Theory.
This also shows an additional flaw with the Labor Theory of Value and its inferiority to the Subjective Theory of Value, which Marxist often defend with a circular argument where their interpretation of empirical data is assumed to be correct in order to prove that it's correct, which is of course invalid reasoning which I have already covered in my previous video on Master plus Labor Value.
This also shows why there's no coercion as it is entirely the pleb's choice whether they want to trade their labor and enjoy instant gratification with the money they get from working at Maris's factory or if they wish to tread the same path as Bob with a lower time preference. Their claims of coercion are based on the fact that in a capitalist society people are allowed to defend their private property meaning their claims are nothing more than a dishonest leap of linguistic gymnastics.
Commies think that they should be allowed to steal other people's property and if simply reworded this belief to make it sound like they are the victims the reality is no one is stopping those in the proletariat from exchanging their time preference to risk starting their own business, or is there?
Let's turn this upside down and show why Marx is actually correct about the existence of class coercion and exploitation in this world, he was only wrong about the specific details.
If you have actually looked into what it takes to start a business you may have noticed that it's not very easy. Allow me to introduce you to an alternative theory of class and exploitation. So ask yourself this what does a robber have in common with a corrupt politician? The answer is that they both steal for a living using the threat of violent aggressive coercion as opposed to actually producing a good or service that consumers would want to voluntarily purchase. Neither of them are producing anything of True Value thus they are both non-productive. In other words there is a non-productive political class which uses aggression to get what they want, at odds with a productive class which most of us belong to. Where we operate under the rules of producing a good or provide that which other people actually want for, the robber (this is obvious) he comes up to people sticks a gun in their face demands money and then tries to live off this cycle of non-production at least until he gets caught, but for the corrupt politician things get more complicated because he can make his actions of theft legal at least in the eyes of the law he rules over.
Your money is stolen from you indirectly via inflation due to bad monetary policy and directly via taxation, you have no say in this manner if you do not pay your taxes or live under these laws men with guns who work under the corrupt politicians will come after you, if you resist they will use violence against you so this guy is therefore just as much of an aggressive thug as the robber is. The reality of his thievery has just been obfuscated with extra steps.
And how does he spend your money? Well that's where the real exploitation comes in, he spends billions sometimes even trillions of your money benefiting his political allies, often creating subsidies and spending packages specifically designed to cater to them while further using his power of coercion harming his political opponents and or the competitors of his allies.
Whether or not regular people actually
want money to be spent in his desires is irrelevant as that is the nature of the non-productive class it gets to ignore any voluntary market forces and simply use aggression to steal and reallocate resources instead of peaceful operation and trade that the productive class must play by.
A quick look through human history shows that this definition of class conflict is a much better fit than what Marx came up with. Just about every war that has been fought can be described as those with political power attempting to use aggression to force others to provide them with resources and internal Market struggles within a country can also be understood by this conflict between the peaceful and voluntary versus the aggressors who just take what they want.
But to really understand this let's go back to Marisa in her Factory.
Let's now say that Marissa has a bigger competitor, Mr Heckle who produces an inferior product to cerno flakes but in larger quantities but this is no concern to him because unlike Marisa Mr Heckle has correctly identified the corrupt politicians as being a member of the non-productive class and he has no problem getting in on the action so he offers said politician a large sum of money as a campaign donation, wink wink nudge nudge, while asking for regulation to be passed that bans some of the crucial ingredients present in cerno flakes. The result is that Marissa is forced to shut down and now the previous laborers in her Factory must work for Mr Heckle instead who then exploits the artificially reduced competition in the market to cut their wages from 200 a day that they were making under Marissa to 100 a day. It is this reduction of wages as a result of complex backroom deals involving the non-productive class that is the true mechanism by which laborers wages are being stolen from them.
Ordinarily those with skills in working
a cereal production factory would have multiple businesses to choose from to take on an employment contract and the value of their labor would be based on the forces of supply and demand just like everything else in the market. These factories which offer better pay and better benefits packages would be able to demand higher skilled workers but now that Mr Heckel has partnered with the non-productive political class to bully his competition away he has granted an unnatural Monopoly.
The free market forces are no longer protecting the workers wages from being arbitrarily reduced, to make things even worse these unnecessary and aggressive regulations also make it harder in some cases legally impossible for Bob to build his own business Bob now must trade significantly higher amounts of his time and effort and it comes with significantly more risk since there is a chance that a politician could just shut down his newly built business for nonsensical made-up reasons at any time.
And don't count on the mainstream media to tell the people the truth about what's going on they too are in bed with the non-productive class and regularly benefit from their subsidies, they are in on the scam and thus work with the regime to keep people misinformed via propaganda.
And so to wrap this up I can finally talk about what this image right here really means it is not just the identity politics culture war that the left is distracted by but also an absurd and painfully misguided theory of class and exploitation which distracts them from the true class conflict.
Adding to their confusion and lack of understanding furthering their status as the man who agrees with the establishment who thinks he is part of the resistance Meme, and you can see this in a lot of Redtube content, for all their talk of muh libertarian socialism and being against muh hierarchies, they're very quick to justify voting for higher taxation and voting for greater power to the political non-productive class.
The result is that the regime remains in power and continues to exploit them just like they have always done.
Anyways that's all for now thanks for watching if you enjoyed the video feel free to like subscribe tip or leave a comment or whatever for the algorithm till next time