Karl Marx was born in 1818, and the effects of his theories and philosophies are still apparent today in any communist nation. China and Cuba come to mind right off hand, as two countries that are heavily influenced by the teachings of Marx. Although these countries feel the effects of Marx, Marx originally envisioned something far different from what we now call communism. Basically the only thing that communism as we know it today, shares with Marx’s idea of communism is the fact that means of production are publicly owned.
Karl Marx was an intelligent young man and even attended Bonn University in 1835. He studied law and had set out to make a good life for himself. While in college, Marx began to see that the political situation in Prussia at the time, was keeping the common man down. He shifted from law studies to philosophy and his new field of study, became a vehicle for ideas that opposed the way in which Prussia was governed. Marx joined a small group of teachers and students that felt the same as he did, and his life as a revolutionary began. Later he would meet Engels in Paris and write the communist manifesto.
Marx was filled with ideas about how the government could be better. He felt that the problems which plagued society, stemmed from the separation of classes. In an industrial capitalist society, the rich own the means of production and the poor who own nothing are exploited to benefit the rich. The poor workers do get paid, but they make far less then the owners, and they have little opportunity to move up on the social hierarchy. The owners make far more money than they actually need to live comfortably, and they could easily afford to pay their workers more, but they are too greedy to do so. Marx felt that this was a serious problem and that eventually the working class would become fed up with the owners and violently revolt against them. Only then would changes begin to take place for the better, in Marx’s opinion.
According to Marx after this violent revolution people would come together and help one another. People would be valued on the basis of how much they could produce. In other words, Who ever produced the most would be highly revered amongst all the other communists, and then this highly revered person would then keep only what he needed from what he produced and give the rest to those who needed it most. Everything would be wonderful in communist society. People would do what needed to be done, and they wouldn’t even need a leader. A leader might be necessary in the very beginning right after revolt to put things in order, but shortly after that the leaders services would be unneeded. This is also assuming that the leader would just give up his power, and live right along side his fellow communist.
From what I can gather, Marx expected the working class to kill off all the owners of production. This way the only people that were left in the nation would be more then happy...