Karl Marx Quotes

Quotes tagged as "karl-marx" Showing 1-30 of 85
Bill Watterson
“Calvin:"It says here that 'religion is the opiate of the masses.'...what do you suppose that means?"
Television: "...it means that Karl Marx hadn't seen anything yet”
Bill Watterson, Calvin and Hobbes: Sunday Pages 1985-1995: An Exhibition Catalogue

Irving Berlin
“The world would not be in such a snarl, had Marx been Groucho instead of Karl.”
Irving Berlin

Gideon Defoe
“Here's your first problem," he said, pointing at a sentence. "'Religion is the opium of the people.' Well, I don't know about people, but I think you'll find that the opium of pirates is actual opium.”
Gideon Defoe, The Pirates! In an Adventure with Communists

Stephen Colbert
“What does Karl Marx put on his pasta? Communist Manipesto!”
Steven Colbert

Friedrich Engels
“The 'Manifesto' being our joint production, I consider myself bound to state that the fundamental proposition which forms its nucleus belongs to Marx. That proposition is: that in every historical epoch, the prevailing mode of economic production and exchange, and the social organization necessarily following from it, form the basis upon which is built up, and from which alone can be explained, the political and intellectual history of that epoch; that consequently the whole history of mankind (since the dissolution of primitive tribal society, holding land in common ownership) has been a history of class struggles, contests between exploiting and exploited, ruling and oppressed classes; that the history of these class struggles forms a series of evolution in which, nowadays, a stage has been reached where the exploited and the oppressed class—the proletariat—cannot attain its emancipation from the sway of the exploiting and ruling class—the bourgeoisie—without, at the same time, and once for all, emancipating society at large from all exploitation, oppression, class distinctions and class struggles.

This proposition, which, in my opinion, is destined to do for history what Darwin's theory has done for biology, we, both of us, had been gradually approaching for some years before 1845.”
Friedrich Engels, The Communist Manifesto

Christopher Hitchens
“I saw exactly one picture of Marx and one of Lenin in my whole stay, but it's been a long time since ideology had anything to do with it. Not without cunning, Fat Man and Little Boy gradually mutated the whole state belief system into a debased form of Confucianism, in which traditional ancestor worship and respect for order become blended with extreme nationalism and xenophobia. Near the southernmost city of Kaesong, captured by the North in 1951, I was taken to see the beautifully preserved tombs of King and Queen Kongmin. Their significance in F.M.-L.B. cosmology is that they reigned over a then unified Korea in the 14th century, and that they were Confucian and dynastic and left many lavish memorials to themselves. The tombs are built on one hillside, and legend has it that the king sent one of his courtiers to pick the site. Second-guessing his underling, he then climbed the opposite hill. He gave instructions that if the chosen site did not please him he would wave his white handkerchief. On this signal, the courtier was to be slain. The king actually found that the site was ideal. But it was a warm day and he forgetfully mopped his brow with the white handkerchief. On coming downhill he was confronted with the courtier's fresh cadaver and exclaimed, 'Oh dear.' And ever since, my escorts told me, the opposite peak has been known as 'Oh Dear Hill.'

I thought this was a perfect illustration of the caprice and cruelty of absolute leadership, and began to phrase a little pun about Kim Jong Il being the 'Oh Dear Leader,' but it died on my lips.”
Christopher Hitchens, Love, Poverty, and War: Journeys and Essays

Yanis Varoufakis
“What does it mean to be a proletarian, really? [...] It means you are a cog in a process of production that relies on what you do and think, while excluding you from being anything but its product. It means the end of sovereignty, the conversion of all experiential value to exchange value, the final defeat of autonomy.”
Yanis Varoufakis, Another Now: Dispatches from an Alternative Present

Thomas Sowell
“Despite the massive intellectual feat that Marx's Capital represents, the Marxian contribution to economics can be readily summarized as virtually zero. Professional economics as it exists today reflects no indication that Karl Marx ever existed. This neither denies nor denigrates Capital as an intellectual achievement, and perhaps in its way the culmination of classical economics. But the development of modern economics had simply ignored Marx. Even economists who are Marxists typically utilize a set of analytical tools to which Marx contributed nothing, and have recourse to Marx only for ideological, political, or historical purposes.

In professional economics, Capital was a detour into a blind alley, however historic it may be as the centerpiece of a worldwide political movement. What is said and done in its name is said and done largely by people who have never read through it, much less followed its labyrinthine reasoning from its arbitrary postulates to its empirically false conclusions. Instead, the massive volumes of Capital have become a quasi-magic touchstone—a source of assurance that somewhere and somehow a genius "proved" capitalism to be wrong and doomed, even if the specifics of this proof are unknown to those who take their certitude from it.”
Thomas Sowell, Marxism: Philosophy and Economics

“manusia tidak hanya menerima kodrat pada umumnya" tetapi juga "kodrat manusia sebagai yang diubah pada tiap babakan sejarah" dan "sebuah transformasi kodrat manusia yang terus menerus" - Karl Marx”
Maulana Kurnia Putra, Eling & Meling; Sejumlah Esai Dalam Kongres Ki Hadjar Dewantara

Karl Marx
“The less you eat, drink and buy books; the less you go to the theatre, the dance hall, the public house; the less you think, love, theorise, sing, paint, fence, etc., the more you save – the greater becomes your treasure which neither moths nor rust will devour – your capital. The less you are, the less you express your own life, the more you have, i.e., the greater is your alienated life, the greater is the store of your estranged being.”
Karl Marx

Oswald Spengler
“Of this economic Stoicism of the Classical world the exact antithesis is Socialism, meaning thereby not Marx's theory but Frederick William I's Prussian practice which long prededed Marx and will displace him – the socialism […] that comprehends and cares for permanent economic relations, trains the individual in his duty to the whole, and glorifies hard work as an affirmation of Time and Future.”
Oswald Spengler, The Decline of the West, Vol 1: Form and Actuality

“Money is thus the general overturning of individualities…
and adds contradictory attributes...for the entire objective
world of man and nature, from standpoint of its possessor
[money] it therefore serves to exchange every property for
every other, even contradictory property and object...It makes
contractions embrace.
Assume man to be man and his relationship to
the world to be a human one: then you can exchange
love for only love, trust for trust… your real individual…
evoking love in return… does not produce reciprocal love…
then your love is impotent— a misfortune.”
-Karl Marx, Economic And Philosophic manuscripts of 1844, P.140

Mary Gabriel
“…his love for children was often remarked on by friends and family. Liebknecht recalled that during the Soho years, when his own family had nothing, Marx would often trail off in midsentence if he saw a neglected child on the street. As broke as he was if he had a penny or ha’penny he would slip it into the child’s hand. If his pocket was empty he would offer comfort by speaking gently to the youngster and stroking his or her head. In later years he could often be seen on the Heath trailed by a gaggle of children who apparently saw in this stern revolutionary an apparition of Father Christmas…”
Mary Gabriel, Love and Capital: Karl and Jenny Marx and the Birth of a Revolution

Thomas Sowell
“Reasoning systematically, Marx was one of the few socialists to understand that economic competition, motivated by "greed," was what drove prices down under capitalism, as capitalists ceaselessly searched for more profits by seeking cheaper ways of producing than those possessed by their fellow capitalist rivals. Mutual competition ensured that capitalists were in no position simply to tack higher profits onto production costs. Therefore, as production costs were driven down throughout an industry, prices tended to be driven down as well, to the benefit of the consuming public.”
Thomas Sowell, Marxism: Philosophy and Economics

Rochelle Forrester
“1. Human beings meet their needs by using the resources in their environment.
2. Human beings have a limited knowledge of their environment.
3. Human beings have the ability to learn and remember so their knowledge of their environment increases over time.
4. As human knowledge of the environment increases, new ways of meeting human needs become available.
5. If the news ways of meeting human needs are better than the old ways of meeting human needs they will be adopted and the old ways discarded.
6. The adoption of new ways of meeting human needs constitutes social and cultural change in itself, but also leads to further social and cultural change.
7. The order of discovery of new means of meeting human needs follows a particular path from that which is most easily discovered to that which is more difficult to discover. Many discoveries require prior discoveries before the discovery can take place. This means there is a necessary order in the discoveries that constitute and cause social and cultural change.
8. The particular order in the discoveries, means social and cultural change occurs in a particular order, so that the sequence of social and cultural change is inevitable and is rationally understandable.

All of the above statements appear to be obviously correct. If they are then the study of social and cultural history can be considered to be a science in the same way as biological evolution is considered to be a science. Social and cultural change derived from increasing human knowledge is not random and so can be scientifically understood. We can not predict the future of social and cultural change as we do not know what future discoveries we will make. This is analogous to biological evolution where changes in living species are unpredictable as we do not know what changes will occur in the environment of those species. However biological evolution does make changes in living species rationally understandable, just as an analysis of the order of discovery of the human environment makes social and cultural change rationally understandable.”
Rochelle Forrester

Rochelle Forrester
“Ever increasing human knowledge is the ultimate cause of the development of human societies from hunter gathering to agrarian to industrial societies. However as human societies change from one form to another, there are substantial changes in the social and cultural institutions of those societies. The different types of societies tend to develop with different population structures, class systems, belief systems, government and legal systems, and different types of economies. The changes to these social and cultural systems are dependent on the prior changes to technological systems and so occur in a particular order as the technological changes occur in a particular order.”
Rochelle Forrester

Rochelle Forrester
“Changes in human knowledge causes changes in technology and through the effect that technology has on the social and cultural systems of a society, the change in human knowledge will affect all elements in that society. Changes in human knowledge may also directly affect the social and cultural systems in human society. Ideas such as biological evolution and cultural relativity have affected human society, without producing any technological innovations. Human history in all its elements will be effected by the increase in knowledge that gradually accumulates in human culture.”
Rochelle Forrester

“Das, was der Begriff des "Kapitalismus" leisten sollte, war sehr viel - mehr sogar als die übrigen "Querschnitte". Man wollte mit ihm nicht bloß das "Wesen" der Erscheinungen darstellen, das jenseits der historischen Einzelerscheinungen liege und um das sich der Nationalökonom hauptsachlich zu bemühen habe. Das wollte man mit den übrigen Querschnitten - wie Stadtwirtschaft oder Hauswirtschaft - auch. Vielmehr sah und sieht man im Kapitalismus zugleich die wirkende Substanz der modernen Wirtschaft. Die einzelnen Erscheinungen - etwa die Zerstörung alter Handwerkszweige, die Bildung von Kartellen, die Ausdehnung des Welthandels, die Umgestaltung der sozialen Struktur der Länder - werden als Taten eines realen Wesens, eben des Kapitalismus, seine Krisis als ein Verfall dieses Wesens angesehen. Marx und seine Schüler haben in besonderem Maße dahin gewirkt, diese Denkform zu verbreiten. Bei vielen Marx-Schülern und bei anderen Schriftstellern wird der Kapitalismus sogar zur personifizierten Substanz oder zur Person. Es wird berichtet, was der Kapitalismus in Europa und sonstwo vollbracht habe, daß er sein Zerstorungswerk auf der Erde fortsetzen werde, daß der Hochkapitalismus in einem eigentümlichen Rhythmus von Aufstieg und Niedergang gelebt habe und daß er ruhiger, gesetzter, vernünftiger werde, wie es seinem zunehmenden Alter entspreche, daß er aber noch immer Vorräte von Waren zerstore oder Arbeiter ausbeute. Das mogen manchmal nur Eigenheiten der sprachlichen Formulierung sein; meist ist es mehr: den Kapitalismus als gestaltende Substanz oder als reales, lebendes Wesen aufzufassen, ist üblich geworden. Die Masse der Menschen liebt es im übrigen, in solchen Kategorien zu denken und ihnen noch eine besondere Gefiihlsbetonung zu verleihen.”
Walter Eucken, Die Grundlagen Der Nationalokonomie

Rachel Holmes
“In November 1849, he began a long multi-part lecture series entitled, 'What is Bourgeois Property?' Well might he ask, since he had none.”
Rachel Holmes, Eleanor Marx: A Life

“Critics of the U.S. Constitution say it is an instrument of class oppression – made by the rich to the disadvantage of the poor. They deny the reality of separate powers under the Constitution. For them, the inequalities of the market economy must be corrected by government intervention. A century ago Le Bon wrote of the difficulties involved in “reconciling Democratic equalization with natural inequalities.” As Le Bon pointed out, “Nature does not know such a thing as equality. She distributes unevenly genius, beauty, health, vigor, intelligence, and all the qualities which confer on their possessors a superiority over their fellows.” When a politician pretends to oppose the inequalities of nature, he proves to be a special kind of usurper – personifying arrogance in search of boundless power.

Logically, the establishment of universal equality would first require the establishment of a universal tyranny (a.k.a., the dictatorship of the proletariat). A formula for doing all this was worked out in the nineteenth century, and was the program of Karl Marx. Le Bon warned that socialism might indeed “establish equality for a time by rigorously eliminating all superior individuals.” He also foresaw the decline of any nation that followed this path (i.e., see the Soviet Union). Such a society would aim at eliminating all risk, speculation and initiative. These stimulants of human activity being suppressed, no progress would be possible. According to Le Bon, “Men would merely have established that equality in poverty desired by the jealousy and envy of a host of mediocre minds.”

“Lovers of the world unite; you have nothing to lose but your chains.”
not Karl Marx

Alex Callinicos
“Aristotle was the product of a slave society. The ruling class of the ancient world despised manual labor as an activity fit only for their slaves. Aristotle’s image of the good man is that of a slave owner who, free from the need to work for his living, is able to pursue the higher things of the mind. The same separation of mental and manual labor, itself a reflection of the class societies in which they lived, was made by all the great bourgeois philosophers, from Descartes to Hegel. All treated the life of the mind as the only important thing about human beings, and all assumed that someone else would do the work to provide them with the sordid material goods—food, clothing, lodging—that they needed in order to pursue the truth.”
Alex Callinicos, The Revolutionary Ideas of Karl Marx

Alex Callinicos
“The philosophers have only interpreted the world in various ways; the point is to change it” The most widely accepted view of history is also the most childish. History is seen as the doings of Great Men (and occasionally Great Women), of kings and politicians, generals and churchmen, artists and film stars. Such a conception of history can be traced back to the medieval chroniclers, who recorded the doings of monarchs and noblemen, their feasts, wars and adulteries. We are still served up with the same view, by courtesy of the most advanced technology, on the television screen and in the headlines of the daily tabloids.”
Alex Callinicos, The Revolutionary Ideas of Karl Marx

Mary Gabriel
“Word arrived of an uprising in the Prussian region of Silesia. For the likes of Marx and the workers in Paris this was electrifying as a portent of what was to come.
On June 4th 1844, driven mad by their misery, a group of weavers marched on the home of a pair of Prussian industrialist brothers, demanding higher pay, and singing, “You villains all, You hellish drones / You knaves in Satan’s raiment!/ You gobble all the poor man owns / Our curses be your payment!”
The protestors were beyond desperate, beyond furious. Men, women and children had been subjected to such low wages that some of the workers had starved. Their demands denied, the enraged weavers stormed the house and destroyed it….”
Mary Gabriel, Love and Capital: Karl and Jenny Marx and the Birth of a Revolution

Mary Gabriel
“1848…..they returned to Cologne to begin a new working-class group there. By April it had eight thousand members. Almost immediately, Marx disagreed with its leader Gottschalk over tactics. Gottschalk preferred explosive rhetoric about worker’s rights and arming a people’s militia, communist notions that terrified the middle classes of Germany who were afraid the rights just won would be lost with a revolt by the more numerous lower classes. Marx, however, believed that although the pace of change was frustrating, historical development was slow, and before there could be proletariat rule, there had to be middle-class rule. In any case, a proletariat ‘class’ barely existed in Germany. The number of people who labored with their hands was great, but they were disorganized and did not as yet recognize their own strength. To support the ultimate goal of that group, Marx believed one had to work for middle-class democracy. Viewing upcoming elections as just such an opportunity, he encouraged participation to ensure by democratic candidates over reactionaries who would roll back on reforms. Marx further believed that any newspaper he and his associates published In Colgne had to be democratic not communist, because in Germany democracy was the ideology with the greater immediate potential. If they had chosen to produce an ultra-radical newspaper, Engels said, ‘there was nothing left for us to do but to preach communism in a little provincial sheet and to found a tiny sect instead of a great party of action.’ The pragmatic approach was not unlike the one Marx had taken during his tenure as editor…”
Mary Gabriel, Love and Capital: Karl and Jenny Marx and the Birth of a Revolution

Stewart Stafford
“Capitalism celebrates the freedom of disparity, Communism propagandises the equality of misery.”
Stewart Stafford

Robert      Hunter
“Of the Russian exiles, Lenin is the last I should have picked as a man of destiny. [Angelica] Balabanoff says that she cannot remember where she first met Lenin and that even when she became conscious of his existence he made no impression upon her. Many others would say the same, but I remember vividly my first meeting with him. It was at dinner in a small Greek restaurant in Soho, not far from the house which bears the tablet commemorating the fact that Karl Marx once lived there. I met him again at Stuttgart, [at the International Socialist Congress] in 1907. In the meantime he had acquired the reputation of being a brilliant student of Marxian economics, a dangerous antagonist in all intra-party controversies and a master of revolutionary tactics and sectarian conspiracies. At the conference he was usually surrounded by a small group of whispering disciples. …

Some of Lenin's enemies believed that he was a paid emissary of the Russian police. His tactics and the dissensions which he promoted among the Russian socialists aroused suspicion. He was a fanatic, a disorganizer, a sectarian, who gave no indication in pre-war days of having the qualities of a national leader. He won his battles but they were always directed against his comrades.”
Robert Hunter, Revolution Why, How, When?

Thomas Sowell
“The Marxist constituency has remained as narrow as the conception behind it. The Communist Manifesto, written by two bright and articulate young men without responsibility even for their own livelihoods—much less for the social consequences of their vision—has had a special appeal for successive generations of the same kinds of people. The offspring of privilege have dominated the leadership of Marxist movements from the days of Marx and Engels through Lenin, Mao, Castro, Ho Chi Minh, and their lesser counterparts around the world and down through history. The sheer reiteration of the "working class" theme in Marxism has drowned out this plain fact.”
Thomas Sowell, Marxism: Philosophy and Economics

R.C. Sproul
“Karl Marx ranks as one of the most remarkable thinkers in history - remarkable for the degree to which and the rapidity with which his ideas had an impact on world culture. When I was in high school, the population of the world was 2 billion; by the time I was forty-five the population of the world had increased dramatically. What stunned me, however, was that by that time 2 billion people were living behind the Iron Curtain. By the time I was forty-five, as many people lived under Marxist regimes as had lived in the entire world when I was a teenager.”
R.C. Sproul, The Consequences of Ideas: Understanding the Concepts that Shaped Our World / Justification by faith alone

Karl Marx
“But on analysis of this concept it becomes clear that though private property appears to be the source, the cause of alienated labour, it is really the consequence, just as the gods in the beginning are not the cause but the effect of man's intellectual confusion. Later this relationship becomes reciprocal.”
Karl Marx, Economic & Philosophic Manuscripts of 1844

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