I wish to note at the outset that I really don't have the answers and doubtful any one really does if one is to avoid utopianism. There might be some thinkers out there but I'm still at the basics of Marxism in trying to comprehend what Marx was getting at.
I could contribute to Marx's sense of morality/ethics, but what I see with the thread subject is more what the communist mode of production and relations are meant to be like and the possible avenues towards it.
The text in itself still doesn't answer the questions of implementation. I understand the theory to a degree. I understand the difference of opinions to a degree. But i do not understand how that theory can be implemented in to practice/real life in the modern world.
Morality can usually bridge that in a sense from theory to practice. It is kind of an incentive to actually move from capitalism to communism but in case of communism/socialism it is very vague when we look at the modern world. Yes, communism/socialism wants to free the worker/working class from added value and to organise itself for the benefit of the community. Your text describes this process as getting rid of money and added value on products/labour but then i think contradicts itself saying that community/society must organize and plan itself. What makes it worse is that you are not considering this to be central planning so i assume smaller communities again. This will lead to the same problems as i wrote to OneDegree
1) Protectionism for the community.
2) Self-interest of the community.
If we exclude centralized state then this also doesn't answer the issue of global cooperation. This would literally mean that production of the mobile phone would not be possible in any shape or form. On top of that, how are the actors in different parts of the world gonna exchange for the services if they are not gonna use money. I understand the concept of moneyless society within a community but i do not understand then a moneyless cooperation between different communities. The communities will have different needs.
This also doesn't answer the question of how McDonalds can exist within your community. OneDegree has an answer for that at least. As i said, answer that it shouldn't is not really acceptable.
Well one has to be careful from merely building castles in the sky in terms of theorizing what is beyond comprehension for the lack of foreseeable practice.
This is where Marx didn't go past the bounds of what he saw and understood, he did indeed leave a very abstract sense of communism (generally such an abstract concept emerges before it becomes more concrete, eg sexism for feminist movement) but he did give some markers based on what it would entail based on what it would have to emerge from.
At the present stage, I think the left is struggling to find the means of organization let alone posit solutions of struggle for the next world.
But I do think morality or the ethics is something important to it coming about and why I see some sense in the Marxist theorist Andy Blunden with his 'ethical politics' as something to emerge from a political landscape of alliance politics.
Here is his effort to outline an ethical politics: https://www.ethicalpolitics.org/ablunden/pdfs/For%20Ethical%20Politics.pdf
Anyway, In regards to your statement
Your text describes this process as getting rid of money and added value on products/labour but then i think contradicts itself saying that community/society must organize and plan itself.
I take it you don't think society can be organized without money but only within a community. I would also wonder what you take from Marx's analysis of the commodity as a unity of opposites (use-value and exchange-value) which is the basis for the very the form of money as the universal commodity today. I haven't much too much of a study of Marx's critique of the political economy but his sense of capital tends to differ from that of others in it's emphasis of it being a social relation among human beings. But at present there is the real commodity fetishism which mistakes the power of people's activity for that of money but the power is very real in terms of it being practically realized in money due to our present relations. Fetishism is a real illusion of human consciousness throughout history.
Alienation (or "estrangement") means, for Marx, that man does not experience himself as the acting agent in his grasp of the world, but that the world (nature, others, and he himself) remain alien to him. They stand above and against him as objects, even though they may be objects of his own creation. Alienation is essentially experiencing the world and oneself passively, receptively, as the subject separated from the object.
The whole concept of alienation found its first expression in Western thought in the Old Testament concept of idolatry. The essence of what the prophets call "idolatry" is not that man worships many gods instead of only one. It is that the idols are the work of man's own hands -- they are things, and man bows down and worships things; worships that which he has created himself. In doing so he transforms himself into a thing. He transfers to the things of his creation the attributes of his own life, and instead of experiencing himself as the creating person, he is in touch with himself only by the worship of the idol. He has become estranged from his own life forces, from the wealth of his own potentialties, and is in touch with himself only in the indirect way of submission to life frozen in the idols. The deadness and emptiness of the idol is expressed in the Old Testament: "Eyes they have and they do not see, ears they have and they do not hear," etc. The more man transfers his own powers to the idols, the poorer he himself becomes, and the more dependent on the idols, so that they permit him to redeem a small part of what was originally his. The idols can be a godlike figure, the state, the church, a person, possessions. Idolatry changes its objects; it is by no means to be found only in those forms in which the idol has a socalled religious meaning. Idolatry is always the worship of something into which man has put his own creative powers, and to which he now submits, instead of experiencing himself in his creative act. Among the many forms of alienation, the most frequent one is alienation in language. If I express a feeling with a word, let us say, if I say "I love you," the word is meant to be an indication of the reality which exists within myself, the power of my loving. The word "love" is meant to be a symbol of the fact love, but as soon as it is spoken it tends to assume a life of its own, it becomes a reality. I am under the illusion that the saying of the word is the equivalent of the experience, and soon I say the word and feel nothing, except the thought of love which the word expresses. The alienation of language shows the whole complexity of alienation. Language is one of the most precious human achievements; to avoid alienation by not speaking would be foolish -- yet one must be always aware of the danger of the spoken word, that it threatens to substitute itself for the living experience. The same holds true for all other achievements of man; ideas, art, any kind of man-made objects. They are man's creations; they are valuable aids for life, yet each one of them is also a trap, a temptation to confuse life with things, experience with artifacts, feeling with surrender and submission.
With it being a social relation and fetishism of commodities being a product of our present mode of production, I don't see money as something necessarily inevitable should there be the possibility for such a fetishism to actually be overcome as opposed to merely developed to a more abstract form.
But it does seem that there is a sense of price within socialism according to this fella.https://kapitalism101.wordpress.com/2014/07/02/indirectly-social-labor/
Marx lays out, briefly, a way to make labor directly social, breaking with capitalist value production, in his Critique of the Gotha program. In Marx’s concept of directly social labor he advocates a system which breaks with the disciplining of production by socially necessary labor time. Producers in this post-capitalist society will not be compensated according to the social average but instead compensated directly for the actual amount of labor time they expend in production. If I spend 2 hours making a widget I get a labor-certificate entitling me to purchase consumption goods equal to two hours of labor. If you spend 3 hours making the same widget you get a certificate entitling you to 3 hours of consumption goods. Regardless of productivity our labors are directly social because they are compensated in full, considered part of the total labor of society, no matter what.11
Careful readers may ask how such a society would determine the labor-content of consumption goods (the ‘prices’ at which workers ‘buy’ them with their labor-certificates) in the absence of socially necessary labor time. This calculation would be based on the average social labor-time that it took to make a commodity. The calculation could be done simply by adding up all of the concrete labor times that go into making widgets and dividing this by the number of widgets. Such a calculation would allow society to continue to make production plans and to ‘price’ commodities. But the compensation of laborers would not be done through such a process of averaging. So such a system would not eliminate the role of average labor time as an accounting unit. What it would eliminate is the role of average time in the compensation of workers.12
So it seems that it retains a capitalist element of production but changes the compensation of labour.
But to be perfectly frank I don't yet fully understand the proposals of those who speak of displacing the socially necessary labor time which compels people to work more than they need to for the sake of profit. Somehow one has people paid for their actual labor instead of the average and I don't know what the implications of such an attempt would have or what attempt one would make to realize this.
But the nature of capitalism is that people are practically concerned with their self interest even though the capitalist system is irrational in nature and doesn't harmonize with human needs and development.
So when you say things like the market is rational, I think you're mistaken according to the position of Marx whose work Das Kapital is meant to be an illustration of how irrational it is in the pursuit of profit to the detriment of human beings in their ability to labor as well as satisfying even basic needs.https://critiqueofcrisistheory.wordpress.com/crisis-theories-underconsumption/
The underconsumptionists point out, correctly, that if capitalist production was production for the needs of the workers, there would not be any crises of overproduction. Capitalist overproduction is overproduction of exchange values, not overproduction of use values. A crisis of overproduction of exchange values breaks out when there is still very much an underproduction of use values, especially use values that the workers themselves need.
The market would be rational if it was a system which adequately satisfied human needs, but it's primarily a system of profit which at best overlaps with human needs but isn't essentially govern by the production of use-values but in the realization of exchange-value.
The rationality of the market requires ideological obscrufication of how things work, which isn't that they're entirely false but they're one sided, partial truths that don't get to the essence of things. Which is why we end up with ridiculous things like the barter illusion in neoclassical economics.
But might like Simon Clarke's work in articulating the irrationality of capitalism.
Here's a summary of him: https://kapitalism101.wordpress.com/2011/09/30/marginal-futility-reflections-on-simon-clarkes-marx-marginalism-and-modern-sociology/
But the idea is that labor is indirectly social, one labours but it only becomes social upon going onto a market and being exchanged. People see money as inevitable means for goods and services being exchanged which is the typical origin story for money as more efficient than bartering, although money merely generalizes the inconvience of barter which is the uncertainty of being able to trade the item for something else in the future. With money, one isn't guaranteed money will be worth the things one wants in the future as capitalism is prone to crises with its increased distancing between value and it's realization.
The implications for the marginalist analysis of exchange become clear as soon as we turn to the explanation of money. For the marginalists money is simply a means of avoiding the inconvenience of barter, which has no substantive implications. However, barter cannot be reduced to the elementary form of immediate exchange, for in barter the individual acquires things through exchange with a view to their subsequent exchange for other things. The ‘inconvenience of barter does not lie in the mediated character of the exchange relation, which requires the individual to enter two exchange relations instead of only one, for this is as much the case when money serves as the mediating term in the exchange as it is when any other commodity plays that role. The ‘inconvenience’ of barter lies in the fact that the first exchange is conditional on the outcome of the second, the results of which cannot be known with certainty. I may wish to exchange corn for meat, but the butcher may want not corn but cloth. The butcher may be willing to accept my corn in exchange for her meat, with a view to subsequently exchanging the corn for cloth with somebody else. In this event neither of us wants the corn in itself, but only as the means of exchange for something else: corn serves in this exchange not as a use-value, but as a value. However, in exchanging meat for corn the butcher runs the risk of not being able to make the subsequent exchange on the anticipated terms, and this is where the ‘inconvenience’ of barter lies.http://college.holycross.edu/eej/Volume14/V14N4P299_318.pdf
The use of durable, infinitely divisible commodities, with a high value in relation to their volume, as means of exchange certainly removes some of the physical inconvenience attached to less suitable commodities, but it does not solve the fundamental problem of barter, that exchanges are made conditional on an uncertain outcome. If corn is not in general demand the butcher will be unwilling to accept corn in exchange for meat, but the introduction of money does not solve this problem, for if corn is not in general demand I will no more be able to exchange my corn for money than I was able to exchange it for meat. On the other hand, if I am able to sell my corn for money, the rationality of this exchange is not determined by the conditions of this exchange alone, but also by my uncertain expectation of the future price of meat. It is the uncertainty of the outcome of particular exchanges that disqualifies particular commodities from serving as the means of exchange, and gives rise to money as the universal equivalent. However money does not remove the uncertainty attached to particular exchanges, it merely expresses that uncertainty in a universal form. Money does not resolve the inconvenience of barter, it generalises it. Far from expressing the rationality of exchange, money expresses the irrationality of a system of social production in which provision for human need is achieved only through the alienated form of commodity exchange.
The explanation of money presents problems of a different order from those raised by recognition of inequalities of wealth and power, because the existence of money cannot be explained without abandoning the most fundamental assumptions of the marginalist model. In the elementary act of exchange the agents of exchange knew with certainty the range of opportunities available to them, expressed in the reciprocal offers of each party to the exchange. If the exchange-ratios of all commodities, in the present and the future, are generally known, the results achieved in the analysis of the elementary act of exchange can be generalised to a system of indirect exchange. However, in the absence of uncertainty as to future exchange-ratios, every commodity can serve indifferently as means of exchange, and there is no need for one commodity to serve as a universal equivalent. On the other hand, if we recognise the existence of ignorance and uncertainty we can explain the emergence of money, but it is no longer legitimate to generalise the results achieved in the analysis of the elementary act of exchange
In regards to
What makes it worse is that you are not considering this to be central planning so i assume smaller communities again.
I suspect One Degree's idea of communities isn't compatible with that of Marx. When I read One Degree's thoughts, it seems isolationist, as if we could break up the world into such small entities and be left to our own devices. But capitalism has already brought an international intercourse between mankind through trade and one would have to destroy our mode of production and send it backwards (causing significant loss of life) to return our production to such a state as to make many different communities who don't trade so much and keep to themselves possible.
Marx seems to want things decentralized and the state dissolved, but I don't know exactly Marx's conception on this either, because communism is clearly on a global scale otherwise it wouldn't have overturned capitalism which is global in nature. But based on the summary from Cyril Smith, I don't take it that governance is considered erased, but only the state as the state isn't equivalent to government.
As such it's not that there no longer exists authorities and representation which has problems of it own, especially in the modern day where apparently a summary of votes constitutes modern politics for the general population.https://www.ethicalpolitics.org/ablunden/pdfs/On%20Political%20Representation.pdf
The problem of representation does not arise from the diversity of people; it arises even when I represent myself. (See Hegel, 1821, §115) I have innumerable different needs and desires, but at every given moment I nonetheless form an intention and act according to that intention. My intention furthers a purpose which resolves the contradictions between my various desires and the constraints imposed by those of others. I cannot act at all other than through momentarily resolving the contradictions between my various desires, and formulating a purpose, even while I take myself to be an single, independent human being – I cannot do two things at once, nevertheless, I must act. So in representing myself I face the same contradiction that confronts the representative who acts on behalf of a group. In selecting a representative and instructing the representative, the group implicitly resolves these contradictions and thereby forms itself into a subject, a personality
It is by acting in the world that an individual makes themself into a personality and in just the same way, by choosing and mandating representatives, a group transforms themself from a collection of individuals into a subject, an actor on the stage of history. There is no implication in this that internal differences are dissolved, overridden or ignored, but they are transcended.
So we have two concepts here of what constitutes a person and what constitutes a representative. On the one hand, a person is seen as someone with a certain gender, age, education, experience, nationality, etc., etc., and on the other, a person is someone who pursues certain purposes, has commitments, a life. The former is the object of surveys of voter preferences, the passive object of political policy and action. The latter is the active subject, who pursues ends collaboratively with others and changes the world.
The state for Marx seems to be a manifestation of an illusory community in the same way we imbue commodities with our activity instead of realizing it as originating from ourselves (fetishism/alienation)https://www.marxists.org/reference/archive/smith-cyril/works/millenni/smith3.htm
Marx showed how the state, among other institutions, exemplified the estrangement of social life, the antagonism between the interest of the individual and that of the community, which is actually more basic than that between classes.
The state is based on the contradiction between public and private life, on the contradiction between general interests and private interests. [MECW Vol 3, p 198]
[The community] takes on an independent form as the State, divorced from the real interests of individual and community, and at the same time as an illusory communal life. ... On the other hand, too, the practical struggle of these particular interests, which constantly really run counter to the communal and illusory interests, makes practical intervention and control necessary through the illusory ‘general’ interest in the form of the State. [MECW Vol 5, p 46]
So the state is a form of community, but an illusory form, in contrast to the real, human community: ‘In the real community the individuals obtain their freedom in and through their association.’
Marx wanted to discover the basis of the illusion which is involved in this ‘illusory community’ and, above all, how the illusion is to be dispelled and the true community released.
Seen from inside estranged social forms, the state seems to speak with the voice of God Almighty, even to those of us who are quite well aware that – like the Deity – it is actually the product of the activities of all too human mortals. Explanations in terms of individual will are futile, declaring no more than that ‘people behave like this because they want to’. Neither the goodwill nor the malevolence of those who control the functioning of the state apparatus provide a solution to the riddle of the state. Nor is the mystery of the state and its power explained by talking in terms of ‘might’: ‘They would be killed if they did not obey.’
The bourgeois state, and its separation from its economic base, are shown by Marx to arise necessarily from the atomisation of individual life within that base. Estrangement and fetishism mean that the lives of individuals are controlled by powers which they themselves have made, but which lie outside themselves. Like money and capital, the political form simultaneously links people together by separating them:
The contradiction between the purpose and goodwill of the administration, on the one hand, and its means and possibilities, on the other hand, cannot be abolished by the state without the latter abolishing itself, for it is based on this contradictions. [MECW Vol 3, p 198]
This occurs when matters have changed in such a way that man as an isolated individual relates only to himself, but that the means of positing himself as an isolated individual have become precisely what gives him his general and communal character. ... In bourgeois society, eg, the worker stands there purely subjectively, without object [objectivlos]; but the thing which confronts him has become the true community, which he tries to make a meal of and which makes a meal of him. [Grundrisse]
Take, for example, the worker who faces a new piece of technology. The law says that it does not belong to her, but to her employer. It will dominate her isolated life until either it or she is worn out. And yet it is actually her connection with the world of global technical development.
The state, along with religion, law and philosophy, can now be seen as exemplifying humanity in inhuman shape. Political, legal and scientific forms arise as illusory stand-ins for community and the collective experience of humankind. These substitutes are necessary so long as that experience is atomised. While we are cut off from the ‘true community’, they will appear as external, enforced, superhuman powers and our consciousness of each of them will invert their real relationship to us. Thus they accurately express the upside-down nature of the world they seem to dominate.
They are superstructural, not the basic problem. They appear in history so long as production of human life takes the form of the production, not of the ‘real wealth’ of socialised humanity, but of the private property of certain individuals. This is the basis of our dehumanised lives. The false conceptions which accompany these forms are constituted by our own activities, which are our own enemies.
To which this isn't necessarily a problem with governance if it really does reflect the projects of people and the people see themselves reflected/represented within their government.
Though the USSR of course failed, it still has some interesting ideas in regards to things like the Soviets as an attempt to achieve a radical kind of democracy. But the historical example even with the unfavorable circumstances of the USSR and the failure for a cascade of revolutions of across Europe does certainly pose challenges to the ability of such a democracy.
But what is clear is that private property within the capitalist economy makes self interest incompatible with the general human interest and Marx sought to show how one's human self interest as embodied in the interests of the working classes emancipation were compatible in a rational way. The working class is meant to be both a particular group but also universal in the implications of it's project should it dissolve itself as a class and thus class as a reality at all.http://d-scholarship.pitt.edu/10867/1/VWills_ETD_2011.pdf
Marx distances himself from the issuance of moral injunctions as a way, in and of itself, to close the gap between what “is” and what “ought” to be. Because scientific communism is not opposed to the needs of individuals, but rather is theorized as a means of recognizing and satisfying those needs, and because it identifies as the revolutionary class the class that, because of its position in production, is already brought into conflict with the forces of capitalism through its struggle for its own continued existence, it does not share the same difficulties as “true” or utopian socialism when it comes to the question of rational motivation. This further informs Marx's hostility to calls for sacrifice. Calls for sacrifice become necessary for a political theory when the link between rational self-interest and the prescribed ends can no longer be demonstrated through reason.