In many of my classical economics classes, almost every professor talked about how Marxism is flawed and does not apply to human nature, thus it was deemed to fail. Human nature is selfish, but human nature also trys to encourage people not be selfish and cooperate with the others to survive. From my extensive travel experience covering twenty countries and regions, my observation is that Marxism has already succeeded in the West while capitalism is succeeding in the East. Look around what we have today in the West and compare to what we did not have before Marxism, obviously, Marxism has done a great job in transformation of class polarization. What we have today in Europe and North America is the result of the influence from Marxism over one hundred years.
Karl Marx envisioned an ideal society that has no class struggle does not necessarily mean that everybody has to have exactly the same level of income, a big population of middle class in a society would satisfy his dream. Violent revolution is nothing fun, if possible, through reasonable taxation or redistribution, a society with good social welfare programs, such as: universal health care, free education, social security fund, free child dental care, workers’ union…etc., may create a big population of middle class and a sustainable economy, because, consumers do not have to save a big portion of their income for above causes, so, a higher spending may create a bigger GDP which means less unemployment. And the reason that Europe is suffering less than the USA in the recession now is because of their better social welfare programs.
Karl Marx was also right about the feature of recessions in a primitive or pure capitalist economy which means an economy that does not have social welfare system. He believed that recessions were created by big pure capitalists for their selfishness and greed and thus a more class polarized society. No matter in what kind of recession, the people who have cash to buy low and sell high are always the ”best and brightest” capitalists and they would be creative enough to create recessions as frequently as they can. Of course, people like Bill Gates or Warren Buffett are not pure capitalists, they are advanced capitalists and philanthropists, and they did not exist in Karl Marx’s time or they might be the products of Marxism. Without the influence of Marxism, even laws, such as Antitrust Law and Minimum Wage Law, etc., might not have been established.
If Karl Marx did not wake up the proletariat working class and question the authorities, the West might not be the same as today.