Hey all, with the talk of the recent right/left violence and increasing political polarity, I thought it would be fun to start a thread to discuss what many people view as the epitome of the "radical left" Marxism. I think that the value in Marx is in his critique of capitalism. But you don't need to look to Marx to see the internal contradictions of capitalism. Take economist Thomas Piketty, in his book Capital in the 21st Century, he demonstrates how "market capitalism" as we know it, will generate continually increasing income inequality and class division (the book is almost 1000 pages, forgive me for having only read parts of it). His basic idea can be demonstrated with this "R>G" which means that when the rate of return on capital is greater than the rate of economic growth, income inequality will rise. With income inequality come a great number of problems that I don't think I need to go into detail on. Marx's ideas laid the foundation for many different alternatives to capitalism, and I think it goes without saying that 20th century communism was a failure. But that doesn't mean we should give up the search for alternative's to market capitalism. So to start the conversation, I will talk a little about a couple modern thinkers who were heavily influenced by Marx, who propose alternatives to our current system. One is an idealist, one is more of a realist who has a very simple idea that could bring big change. I'm mostly doing this because I injured my hand and haven't been able to play guitar for over a week. The first is Peter Joseph, who's point is very simple, and powerful. His idea is that, technologically speaking, there is nothing stopping our civilization from creating a "post scarcity" economy. The TL;DR is that with modern energy technology, and vertical farming technology, we could theoretically create a world without poverty. Its not a matter of technological limitations, its a matter of how inefficient markets are as resource distribution systems. Peter is an idealist, essentially saying that the only thing between us and a technological communist utopia (I use that world very lightly, because you can't have up without down) is a lack of political will, not technological limitation. The next is Richard Wolff, who is more of a realist. He proposes that by introducing "democracy at work", and abolishing the employer employee relationship, we could make capitalism into a much more ethical system. Every worker at a business will be able to vote on what the business does with the profits of that business, instead of a board of directors who have a power over the business that kings had over countries. His proposal isn't a utopian vision, but one that would propel us forward into a better tomorrow.