@Edit: I should qualify "Marx's communism" as, "The interpretation of Marx's communism practiced by actual communist countries such as those of the late Soviet Bloc, chiefly the Soviet Union". Looks like we'll have to travel forward in this terribly slow time machine known as reality to get real evidence on whether Marx's dream of "a classless and stateless society structured upon common ownership of the means of production" comes about, and proves successful when/if capitalism collapses.
On the other hand, Marx does not merely critique; he does make his own predictions, practice his own brand of 19th century futurism; pure communism. This supposed idyllic "end state" that inevitably results from the development of technological productive forces to the point such that individuals no longer need to work because "The machines have gotten so freaking amazing and do all our jobs for us!" (sound familiar?) and suddenly classes are eliminated, the very state itself is tossed into the dustbin of history, and people live happily everafter in harmony as the triumphant "working class" lives in egalitarian heaven, free to prance through the fields in their eternal free time "read poetry to one another and practice archery in the afternoons".
Utopia as an *inevitable* result of development of technology. Honestly, I think Marx might have been the proto-Singularitarian. Guised of course in the sociopolitical millieu of his time.
There is an assumption that capitalism will collapse AND that this pure communism will arise in its place, rather than some capitalism 2.0 or Soviet-like authoritarian form of communism. Marx asks us (with a picket-sign in hand) to wait in joyful hope for the coming of the Kingdom of Communist heaven that is to arise as written in The Book of Marx after the Capitalist Armageddon at which point we the worker shall ascend. While that is possible, it's also possible that these super-machines will simply displace human workers, and not just low skill manufacturing jobs but top to bottom, armies of IBM Watsons eliminating whole swaths of the knowledge economy with brute-force natural-language processing -- goodbye healthcare, legal, tech support. These obsolesced majorities of humanity, fight tooth and nail for employment requiring ever more exclusive levels of education/skill in the dwindling areas of human potential not yet computer/machine-automated, become part of not a working class or even an underclass but a "useless class" whom the ownership class don't really care or empathize much with at all in their 100th floor Wall St. towers. The "useless class" no longer have bargaining rights because they have no leverage since they are no longer necessary for production; the oligarchs can get along just fine with their robot underlords, kthxbai. They become favela-fodder fighting for scraps in the streets, and the possibility of "revolution" vanishes. A future not distributed evenly, but a bigger and bigger pie eaten by fewer and fewer moguls and their family members. Not the end of but the return to feudalism This certainly seems to be the trend over the past forty or so years as we've seen massive gains in global productivity but simultaneously massive inequality. This is the wishful thinking, naivete and ignorance of human psychology and human history which I'm talking about. To think that just because we have the capacity
to provide a good and equal standard of living for everyone, that it is *inevitable* that we would do such. People will find things to compete over, whether its territory, food, derivatives, marketshare, superpowerdom, people will find a way to be vermin, find ways to be horrible bastards even in the face of insurmountable good.
Perhaps it really is only governments that can take such losses in stride.
You're right. The corporate puppetmasters need a place to dump all their bad bets and toxic spacecraft assets. Good thing they've got a cum dumpster. (Government, AKA: Us)
Originally posted by titanium wren:
89 virgins bikini clad gatling-katana wielding Draenor
I would like to know more about the aforementioned Draenor.
They sound... interesting.
Is that so? Well I've got a lifetime subscription to World of Warcraft: Singularity! to sell ya...