The history of the mankind has known many political trends dominating in different countries and different times.
Many of them had the same ideas and goals but offered different ways of their achievement. All of them were aimed at the wealth of society but few of them managed to lead this or that society to wellbeing. Liberalism and Marxism are among those political philosophies that have become popular in some countries as the leading forms of political ideology. These trends are characteristic of quite different attitude towards the role of government and state in the country. So what are these differences and which trend is more relevant nowadays? These issues will be covered in this paper.
It is necessary to note that the main principles of liberalism have conquered popularity in many countries in the world. Liberalist theorists claim that the state should play the most possible minimal role in life of the society. With the development of liberalism its adherents faced different accusations in leaving people to the mercy of fate and due to different conditions, some liberal theorists altered their views. Therefore, there appeared different trends among liberals. Theorists of classical liberalism keep to the idea that in any state individual freedom should be encouraged.
Government should limit its regulation of business and economy and it is should be assigned by constitution.
Individual property rights, defense of civil liberties and support of free markets are the guarantee of the successful development of a liberal state. In contrast to classical liberals social ones insist on more intensive governmental regulation of economy, creation of state enterprises and welfare state. Social liberal theorists stand for creation of so-called positive liberty for people which will give them more opportunities, for example health care, education, material assistance (Richardson 263).
However, if to compare this view of state intervention to the life of society with the Marxist one we can see that they are opposite. The main idea of Marxist theorists is that the state plays the leading role in the life of people and is the only power that can organize the society and provide welfare. In 1848 Marx and Engels wrote an argumentative work
The Communist Manifesto, where they expressed their ideas of the ideal society. According to their view, all people in the society should be equal. Throughout the history of the mankind people have always struggled for equality. The struggle should also begin in the context of the bourgeoisie’s oppression of proletarians. The basis of the conflict is that the bourgeois own the means of production, while proletarians have to work for them in order to get their wage.
Marx saw the basis of the equality in the society in the abolition of right of inheritance and property in land as well as the liability of all people to labor and transmission of factories and means of communication to the state government. According to Marx and Engels the ideal model of the society is the proletarian society where there is no oppression and division of people into classes. Due to the equalization of rights and the centralization of certain spheres of life in the hands of the State, the proletarian society would not have had any struggle for power and authority (194).
As well as liberalism Marxism also found supporters in many countries and split into different trends. However, the achievement of an ideal state was always a utopia. Many Marxist theorists and Marx himself acknowledged that state is the tool that is used by one class of society to struggle with another. The ruling class used the state to execute its orders and in many writings Marx and Engels saw a state as a neutral tool which could be used wither by workers or by capitalists.
Thus, we can see that liberalist and Marxist theorists have absolutely different approaches to the role of a state in the life of a society. In my opinion, contemporary development of countries proves that the most suitable political trend is liberalism and its different forms. Today many governments have chosen democratic way which is characterized by such liberal ideas as the freedom of an individual, private property, freedom of speech, opportunity to have proper business etc. I believe these opportunities let people thrive and thus contribute to the prosperity of their countries.
The history has proved that it is impossible to create absolutely equal society with shared rights and property.
Marxism and communism as its form is no more relevant under the conditions of modern globalization and economic competition.