“In hitherto existing Socialist states, like the Soviet Union and China, “negative freedoms” were severely restricted, while “positive freedoms” were advanced. All people had universal access to health care, full university education, etc, but people could only use those things they had in a particular way – in support of the government. In the most advanced capitalist governments, this relationship is the other way around: “positive freedoms” are restricted or do not exist all together, while “negative freedoms” are more advanced than ever before. A worker in capitalist society has the freedom to say whatever she believes, but she does not have the freedom to live if crippled by a disease regardless of how much money she has. A socialist society that has been established from a capitalist society will strengthen “negative freedoms”, while ushering in real “positive freedoms” across the board, ensuring equal and free access to social services by all.
The fullest development of positive freedom is impossible however without a further development of negative freedom – people cannot be forced to be free.”
To my critics: Yes, we are freedom loving communists! But only those who are ignorant to Marxist theory seriously advocate the idea that, because we are Marxists, that we are automatically against personal freedom, democracy, or are in favor of the reckless, totalitarian pursuit of communism. Terrible crimes were committed in the name of the totalitarian pursuit of our ideology in the 20th century, we do not deny this nor do we ascribe to a revisionist interpretation of history to portray communists in a more favorable light.
We are communists because we believe humanity can do better than neoliberal capitalism where 5 men have expropriated the same amount of wealth as the bottom half of humanity, the bottom 3.5 billion people. We are communists because we live in a world that produces enough resources to provide enough to feed, clothe, shelter, and provide a dignified, meaningful life to every human being on this planet but chooses not to because our economic system values the exchange value of commodities (profit) over their use value (usefulness). In a word, the world today cares more about profit than addressing human needs. It cares about this so much that we are rapidly accelerating into an era where capitalism has wrecked the earth to such an extent that it will no longer be hospitable to human life.
Capitalism has been the first system to show what mankind can truly achieve, but the way it organizes the vast wealth it produces is unacceptable. It is inhuman, tyrannical, and unjust. We advocate the democratization of industry as a necessary prerequisite to genuine democracy, that is, democracy that represents the working people above the rich, property owning minority that consists of 9/10 of all senators, congressmen, and “representatives of the people” in our modern bourgeois society.
We advocate the abolition of private (not personal) property, that is, the prevention of economic exploitation on a systematic basis. To quote Marx, “Communism deprives no man of the power to appropriate the products of society; all that it does is to deprive him of the power to subjugate the labour of others by means of such appropriations.” We believe in the necessity of making the state, that monstrous and tyrannical institution that has been with man since the beginning of class society, superfluous, as did Karl Marx, Friedrich Engels, Rosa Luxemburg, and Vladimir Lenin. We are communists today because we recognize the fact that Marx, Engels, and even Lenin never once wrote about the necessity of a one-party state, especially one that is tyrannical.
To quote from Marxists Internet Archive,
As you can clearly see, we are freedom loving communists through and through.
See my other article: The Marxist Case for Human Rights