“The Communist Manifesto” (written in 1848 by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels) focuses on the history of class struggles and aims to end wealth gaps as the center of its moral argument. “FREEDOM!” (written in 2014 by Adam Kokesh) focuses on the history of tyranny and its primary moral argument is the principle of self-ownership. Both books claim to support freedom and address the conflict between the oppressors and the oppressed. Both books use well-being, equality, and fairness as selling points, but approach these ideas in vastly different ways. “The Communist Manifesto” looks to government as the Savior and profit motive as the enemy, while “FREEDOM!” points to profit as the reward for service to others based on voluntary exchange, which cannot exist with government.
Neither book explains where their philosophies have been fully implemented, but Marx outlines the direction and steps to follow to his ideological conclusion. Both attempt to convince the reader of the terrible ills of the status quo. They both assert that it is their philosophy that is in the interest of social progress, and they both claim the opposite philosophy leads to the inevitable Ruling Class. Kokesh has more history to work with, and is able to show how Marx has already failed.
While “The Communist Manifesto” stresses the supposed “greater good,” “FREEDOM!” asserts respect for individuals through universal nonviolence. One important distinction is how they answer the question of private property. “The Communist Manifesto” lists its planks as a guideline for all property belonging to the State, under the idea of a united workforce. “FREEDOM!” describes areas that are currently under the control of a centralized government, and shows why government intervention has not only NOT eliminated the problems of a Ruling Class, but made them worse. “FREEDOM!” suggests decentralization as key to restoring and retaining private property, particularly self ownership, from which all other property rights extend, according to Kokesh.
The ideas put forth by Marx have been implemented, even in the United States, and clearly have impeded social progress because they have been used as an excuse for violence by government. Marx even admits his ideology could not be done without violence. It’s time to take a look at things another way, not just with a new ideology, but with principles that supersede ideology. We should unite in the ideals of “FREEDOM!” rather than being united in self-proclaimed peasantry. We should unite on the principles of acquiring property only without force, fraud, and coercion. This is the only way to attain true justice, and is the only way to peace. As Kokesh so aptly stated, “You, as a free, beautiful, independent human being with inalienable rights, own yourself!”