Marx and Free Trade


I wanted to write something today to keep a consistent habit, but have been struggling for a topic. So I thought I'd post this Marx quote from the "Communist Manifesto": 

“The bourgeoisie has resolved personal worth into exchange value, and in place of the numberless indefeasible chartered freedoms, has set up that single, unconscionable freedom—Free Trade. In one word, for exploitation, veiled by religious and political illusions, it has substituted naked, shameless, direct, brutal exploitation.

The bourgeoisie has stripped of its halo every occupation hitherto honored and looked up to with reverent awe. It has converted the physician, the lawyer, the priest, the poet, the man of science, into its paid wage laborers.

The bourgeoisie has torn away from the family its sentimental veil, and has reduced the family relation to a mere money relation.”
— Communist Manifesto

I read this book when I was 18 or 19 and liked it but reading this quote now was sort of an "A-ha" moment for me. So much of what I've been thinking about and writing about in recent times has focused on the profit motive and how it twists our values into naked exploitation and how it robs us of our humanity and wrecks havoc on our mental health.  So much of what I believe about therapy and mental health has changed in the last year, which sees our mental health crisis as a symptom of a sick society that values individualism, competition, and materialism above all else.

But apparently, my ideas aren't that innovative haha. Marx said it better than I ever could 170 years earlier. It's a bit humbling to realize this again but has motivated to return to his writing and distill any more wisdom I can get from it...