Speaking up against our would be soviet overlords.

For a while now I have taken issue with the broken patent & IP system we currently have where a few oligarchs strip ever more of our rights in order to maintain government mandated monopolies. The systems' stated intent is to promote invention and development by preventing the richest largest corporations from exploiting independent inventors and the populace. In reality it does the exact opposite and the solution would be true free market economics.

What does this have to do with Karl Marx? I was looking into the type of corrupted economic system, it is most similar to socialism, or what monarchies did with royal companies (yet surprisingly it is not covered under the accepted definitions of any of the economic models they used). A modern name often used for it is "Crony capitalism" but that is a horribly misleading name since it is the antithesis of capitalism. It was during that research that I found an interesting little tidbit by Karl Marx.


The theory of state monopoly capitalism was initially a Marxist doctrine popularised after World War IILenin had claimed in 1916 that World War I had transformed laissez-faire capitalism into monopoly capitalism, but he did not publish any extensive theory about the topic. The term refers to an environment where the state intervenes in the economy to protect large monopolistic or oligopolistic businesses from competition by smaller firms.

This is exactly the same as the so called "crony capitalism", yet originally observed by Marx. What is amazing is his conclusion. In a true capitalistic society Cronyism wouldn't fly.


Capitalism is generally considered by scholars to be an economic system that includes private ownership of the means of production, creation of goods or services for profit or income, the accumulation of capital, competitive markets, voluntary exchange, and wage labor.

The issues are that "competitive markets" and "voluntary exchange" are suppressed in both the "State monopoly capitalism (aka Crony Capitalism)", which is the stated problem according to Marx, as well as in "socialism/communism", the supposed solution according to Marx.

Marx believed the solution to the encroachment of government on private liberty is to change the government from being run by "greedy rich oligarchs" to "paragons of the people" and then give the government even more power. This obviously goes very wrong very quickly when you replace democracy for self proclaimed paragons of the people. 

Ironically marx's solution is even worse then the problem it was meant to fix. [sarcasm]Who would have thought that the problem of monopolies fusing with government to get government mandated monopolies would get worse if you decree that all business must be government owned.[/sarcasm]

The problem is NOT Capitalism, the problem is the LACK of capitalism.


on Apr 12, 2012


on Apr 12, 2012

I believe you are correct.  Monopoly Capitalism is a better phrase to describe what is commonly called 'Crony Capitalism', but that doesn't change the old adage - 'It's not what you know, ...'

on Apr 12, 2012

Karl Marx was a flipping idiot and everything in our government is already broken and has been for years. Surely everything is not the fault of the easy-for-me-to-ignore Marx fellow? But the patent system, that is the root of our crony capitalist nightmare, who would have ever guessed? Sorry if I have not taken this seriously, but at some point we just have to admit that things are FUBAR for whatever reasons … and stop trying to foist the blame for all our woes on anyone besides ourselves. If we cannot even figure out how to govern ourselves in some humane manner, well what can you say to that??? The problem is simply one of greed on the part of the government and financial powers that be, and stupidity on our part for allowing it to happen in the first place.

on Apr 13, 2012

@GirlFriendTess: I am not in any way arguing that the ONLY issue we have is broken patent system.

@Daiwa: Well, I would go for just Cronyism or Corruption... it is explicitly not capitalism (quite the opposite), and while the direct result of socialism it is not the intended implementation thereof.

My argument was that socialism and communism, as well intentioned as they are, naturally breed corruption/cronysm while true capitalism hampers it.

And that it should be obvious and logical and yet somehow escaped the notice of that loon Marx.

on Apr 13, 2012

An unfettered free market is more likely to to be beneficial to a greater percentage of the populace than a centrally-planned one.  Perfection being impossible, I'll take the 'less bad' of the two.  Inhibition of market competition by rent-seeking will be attempted no matter what, just like manipulation of socialism for the benefit of the power-holders occurs.  Our job is to minimize that behavior as much as we can.

on Apr 13, 2012

Lenin was one of the first to publicize historical findings how US individual property rights tied into and led to other rights.  What he failed to realize was how all those other rights would ultimately be lost when property rights were taken away.

It's classic planned economics versus free market economics and status versus contract.  Both socialism and fascism, also known as crony capitalism, fall in the planned category while pure capitalism is free market.

Read: The Road to Serfdom.  I highly recommend.  However, it does not go into patents explicitly beyond the rule of law and economic its economic effects.