Mark Moss is a serial entrepreneur, author, speaker and host of The Mark Moss Show. In this interview, we discuss his recent co-authored book “The UnCommunist Manifesto”, which is a critique of Communist theory in response to its continued influence in our modern world.
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The Communist Manifesto was one of the most influential political writings in modern history. It was written by the 19th-century philosophers, historians and political theorists Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels. Despite falling into obscurity for a generation after its initial publication in 1848, it went on to provide a theoretical basis for one of the 20th century’s most pervasive ideologies.
The Soviet Communist Empire the Manifesto inspired ultimately failed. Proponents have argued that the Soviet political and economic system was not the same form of communism proposed by Marx and Engels. Many others have indicated that the fall of the USSR and its vassal countries showed the inherent fallacy of centralised control being the optimum political system.
It wasn’t merely that communism failed, but the brutal nature of the system it inspired. There is a debate about whether the quantum of deaths under communist regimes could be referred to as genocide. Semantics aside, tens of millions of people have been killed in Communist countries. Further, it discouraged innovation whilst encouraging waste, corruption and nepotism.
Boris Yeltsin acknowledged the Soviet issue when he made an impromptu visit to a US supermarket during a state visit. “There would be a revolution” he stated when contemplating how normal Russians would react to seeing the range and quality of produce. And yet, despite the epic collapse of the USSR, young people are increasingly being drawn to socialist ideas that underpin the Manifesto.
Does a review of the Communist Manifesto provide adequate insight into the system it inspired? Can we identify the dangerous tenets of a communist system to better protect society? Is there anything theoretically sound in the Manifesto? Ultimately, do the transparent weaknesses of our current system give rise to society underestimating the weaknesses of competing systems?