Of late, there have been a number of articles and blog posts pointing to the evidence of Barak Obama’s Marxist political theory. It is interesting, to say the least, but it is also going to be completely ineffective as a tool to defeat him in November.
I am not debating that Obama is a Marxist. His own words and associations reflect a long-held belief in class struggle, liberation theology, and alienation of those who produce vs. the owners of the production. I am also not trying to define Obama’s Marxism – mostly because we don’t call it Marxism anymore. Marx himself has become irrelevant to the 31 flavors of “Marxism”, which have evolved in various places across the world. That Obama leans toward a “Marxist” view of the world is easy to see for anyone who chooses to remove the rose-tinted lenses.
The issue at hand is more about whether Obama’s Marxism is a relevant criticism of his policy ideas with a goal of using the criticism as a means to expose and defeat him. To my mind, the answer is no.
Most Americans really have no idea what Marxism is. Some may equate it with the former Soviet Union, but Marxism was dead there within a few years of the 1917 revolution. Soviet policies and world view were based upon Communism and Leninism, which is an entirely different animal.
Additionally, the impact of calling someone a Marxist in America is trivial. IT will be seen as nothing more than a rhetorical name-calling with the intent of smearing the good Senator. This isn’t because people can’t believe it is true. It is more because Americans have never been exposed to Marxism as a threat to the nation, as have countries in Europe. It is an undefined experience in the minds of most Americans – the word has no value to cause shock and investigation.
Those who consider themselves Marxist also don’t understand the criticism. Most who define themselves as such are folks who study Marxism – and are more likely to be “classic Marxists”. Obama is certainly not one of those. His political theory is borne in a hybrid – Neo-Marxist tendencies to be certain, but Barak Obama has lived in the cultural Marxist environment of Reverend Wright. Indeed, his Marxist theory – instilled in Barak by his activist mother – was the bases for seeking out Revered Wright’s church as a place to organize blacks for social and economic revolution.
However, many Americans have been blissfully ignorant, and some by choice, at what Barak Obama espouses as his defining world view. The vast majority of these folks are as ignorant about the threat Obama’s Marxist political theory is to what they know today. in the 21st century, Marxism simply has no meaning in America.
So, calling Barak Obama a Marxist is a great way to define him as applies to his policy beliefs. As a criticism, it just doesn’t work.
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