Why is it important to create a classless society?
All of the social problems we face emanate originally from the division of society into two warring classes: capitalist, and proletariat. These problems develop in manifold ways according to their own internal logic, or lack of, and alienate and oppress humanity.
Civil libertarians need to urgently realise the class basis to their causes. The state is the primary organ through which the ruling class exert their control over society. Whether your cause is a beef against parenting classes that undermine parental autonomy, smoking restrictions, or drinking restrictions, the ban on drugs, police harassment of ethnic minorities, immigration controls, whatever – all this stems from the state that is hungry to crush liberty, and itself is the primary organ through which the ruling class exert their control over society.
Those worried about the problems of work being unrewarding and causing of suffering in a capitalist society are also concerned about the class division. The character of our whole society is affected by the class division. Indeed, the project of human liberation gets nowhere until it confronts class. The civil libertarians are necessarily on a losing streak until they confront class, because the state will keep on coming back and back at them. Any victory for civil liberties tends to be short-lived. Therefore, this blog seeks to unite everyone who has a problem with the way contemporary society is by locating the base problem in the fundaments of class society that creates the state. It is that which must be done away with. To get rid of the state presupposes we must get rid of class division.
How to create a classless society
The capitalist class are only reproduced by the existence of profit. It is their ownership of profit that distinguishes them from even the wealthiest middle-class worker. The ownership of profit gives them command over the way society is run, allows them to control the media in their own interests, and generally inhibits freedom for the majority. Where the capitalist has profit, the worker has his wage. These are quite different categories.
The wage represents the value of everything needed to reproduce and sustain the worker at a socially acceptable level – all the food, housing, childcare costs, occasional holiday, etc. What it is not is an adequate compensation for work expended. The worker generally produces more in a week’s work than he or she takes home as the wage. But they are not paid for the quantity of goods they produce, they are paid as to what can reproduce them for the next round of work. So, there is a discrepancy between worker’s pay and what workers have produced. That quantity of value is what constitutes profit, the lifeblood of the capitalist.
Therefore, to create a classless society requires a new approach to wages and profit. In fact, profit has to be done away with entirely to get rid of what reproduces the capitalist class. How do you get rid of profit? By abolishing wages. Instead of paying the worker a wage that only represents what is necessary to sustain and reproduce him or her, instead workers-in-control pay themselves the full value of their produce. If workers received an equivalent value to the work they have put in, then there is nothing left over, there is no profit any more. Therefore, the capitalist class cease to exist, and you have a classless society.
The technology used in production could still be reinvested in by workers contributing part of their new earnings to it as part of the collective within the enterprise. But without a capitalist owning the place and an army of managers and sergeants watching over them, then work suddenly becomes far more rewarding, especially knowing you will take home more than under capitalism. Furthermore, you are now a real stakeholder as opposed to the bullshit use of this term by capitalistic politicians.
The worker would of course still pay some form of taxation – to fund schools, welfare, etc. But given they have just received a 50% pay rise, they probably wouldn’t grudge that. Also, they have an equal say over how the social fund from taxation is deployed, so would feel enriched by this.
Without the existence of profit, the post-capitalist economy loses capitalism’s tendency towards crisis, meaning the whole of society greatly improves in all dimensions, including morally.
It could be said that this is just a sketch of a worker’s co-operative. It isn’t because I would advocate the model on a worldwide scale to get rid of capitalism in its entirety. It should also be added that new participatory democratic structures would need to be called forward to co-ordinate the production of goods to unleash the already latent social dimension to production. As people learn to co-operate more and more, they will swap jobs over with each other, to try new things, and develop their all-round capacities.
To summarise: the creation of a classless world unfetters a profound human liberation.