Nov 8, 2017 in Economics

Political Economics

The economic theories of Marx and Engels differ from those of Smith, Ricardo and Malthus in the sense that the former advocated for employee-based approach while the latter advocated for employer-based approach. It goes without saying that Marx’s views have almost overturned the initial economic models laid down by people like Adam Smith. According to literature, Adam Smith as well as other early economists in Britain caused the establishment of an open market in Britain. This in turn established a glaring inequality in the society. As a result, Britain became a nation of ten millionaires and ten million peasants. It should be noted that the more the rich became wealthier, the more the poor became poorer. Adam Smith was quite specific in his contribution to the world economics. For instance, his advocacy for short term and intermediate term wage increases were conspicuously missing from the works of Malthus and Ricardo.

The fundamental similarity between the two groups of economists was emphasis on ethics as an important element in business. According to literature, Adam Smith believed that a free market would most probably function properly in the presence of a civil government. This would ensure that businesses operate within checks and balances of a well defined governance structure. On the other hand, Marx and Engel were more emphatic on the principle of moral philosophy. Indeed, they noted that workers had to work overboard to free themselves from the mental slavery by the rich. The ideas generated by Marx have brought significant changes to modern economics. For instance, the emergence of trade unions was a direct impact of Marxism. Although earlier academicians initially dismissed his contributions, they have lately found utmost relevance in economics. It goes without saying that world revolutions that were based on class conflict arose due to the influence of Marxism.

Economic determinism has been defined as the supremacy of economic issues over politics in defining the future of a society. This certainly agrees with Marxism in the sense that class conflict as an element of economics is the core principle in Marxism. Even after the death of Marx, economic determinists still emerge from different parts of the world. For instance, Thomas Barnett has recently emerged as a force to reckon with in the world of economics. His ideas certainly drive the economic relationship between the United States and the rest of the world. According to literature, he is likely to define the future roles of various states in global economics. In particular, his ideas recognize the Cold War as well as the events of the September 11 as significant stand points in global economic history. According to him, the United States will always relate to the economic community depending on what they think of other countries in respect of the two events. Indeed, this is the reality on the ground and perhaps explains why his ideas are fast getting acceptance in the world. Barnett had always thought that the relationship between the United States and the Soviet Union will never thaw. In this respect, his line of education had been designed for this kind of eventuality. However, things completely changed soon after he completed his education. The United States remained the sole superpower after the collapse of the Soviet Union. It was at this point that Barnett took a leading role in designing a smooth transition from the old system to the current economic world. In his submissions, Barnett always held that globalization had led to the establishment of common rules that most countries shared.

At no point in time have the rich found pleasure in paying their workers well. Neither have workers felt the pride of working for their masters. Definitely, there is something amiss with the working environment. The call for humanity, workers in specific, to unite is more relevant that it has ever been. It goes without saying that rich people are more focused on getting richer and protecting their riches than on the workers. Even in the major economic states in the world, workers still have nothing to smile about.  It should be noted that globalization has significantly benefited states in terms of trade and commerce. However, significant portion of this is lost in trying to protect the nations or wage war against the exploited workers who are perceived to be a threat. This is why workers must work overboard to overthrow this lot before they can taste the real fruits of their labor. Understandably, this manifesto emphasizes the need for workers to be resilient in seeking a voice. It is only a strong voice that will enable them to be taken seriously by their employers. This certainly calls for unity of purpose and continued efforts in social activism.

In conclusion, the economic theories of Marx and Engels differ from those of Smith, Ricardo and Malthus. The former advocated for employee-based approach while the latter advocated for employer-based approach. The fundamental similarity among economists was emphasis on ethics as an important element in business. Economic determinism has been defined as the supremacy of economic issues over politics in defining the future of a society. Even after the death of Marx, economic determinists still emerge from different parts of the world. For instance, Thomas Barnett has recently emerged as a force to reckon with in the world of economics. He remains an important factor in as far as economic determinism is concerned.

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