Re: [OPE-L] Marxian trivia question

From: Jerry Levy (Gerald_A_Levy@MSN.COM)
Date: Thu Mar 16 2006 - 07:30:36 EST

[Tuesday, March 14 marked the 123rd anniversary of the death
of Karl Marx.   In the year 2117 the world will remember Marx
on the occasion of  the 234th anniversary.]

A:  It will be 111 years before the anniversary of Marx's death
once again will numerically be in an exactly ascending sequence.

In solidarity, Jerry

Frederick Engels' Speech at the Grave of Karl Marx
Highgate Cemetery, London. March 17, 1883
On the 14th of March, at a quarter to three in the afternoon, the
greatest living thinker ceased to think. He had been left alone for
scarcely two minutes, and when we came back we found him in his
armchair, peacefully gone to sleep -- but for ever.
An immeasurable loss has been sustained both by the militant
proletariat of Europe and America, and by historical science, in the
death of this man. The gap that has been left by the departure of
this mighty spirit will soon enough make itself felt.
Just as Darwin discovered the law of development or organic nature,
so Marx discovered the law of development of human history: the
simple fact, hitherto concealed by an overgrowth of ideology, that
mankind must first of all eat, drink, have shelter and clothing,
before it can pursue politics, science, art, religion, etc.; that
therefore the production of the immediate material means, and
consequently the degree of economic development attained by a given
people or during a given epoch, form the foundation upon which the
state institutions, the legal conceptions, art, and even the ideas
on religion, of the people concerned have been evolved, and in the
light of which they must, therefore, be explained, instead of vice
versa, as had hitherto been the case.
But that is not all. Marx also discovered the special law of motion
governing the present-day capitalist mode of production, and the
bourgeois society that this mode of production has created. The
discovery of surplus value suddenly threw light on the problem, in
trying to solve which all previous investigations, of both bourgeois
economists and socialist critics, had been groping in the dark.
Two such discoveries would be enough for one lifetime. Happy the man
to whom it is granted to make even one such discovery. But in every
single field which Marx investigated -- and he investigated very
many fields, none of them superficially -- in every field, even in
that of mathematics, he made independent discoveries.
Such was the man of science. But this was not even half the man.
Science was for Marx a historically dynamic, revolutionary force.
However great the joy with which he welcomed a new discovery in some
theoretical science whose practical application perhaps it was as
yet quite impossible to envisage, he experienced quite another kind
of joy when the discovery involved immediate revolutionary changes
in industry, and in historical development in general. For example,
he followed closely the development of the discoveries made in the
field of electricity and recently those of Marcel Deprez.
For Marx was before all else a revolutionist. His real mission in
life was to contribute, in one way or another, to the overthrow of
capitalist society and of the state institutions which it had
brought into being, to contribute to the liberation of the modern
proletariat, which he was the first to make conscious of its own
position and its needs, conscious of the conditions of its
emancipation. Fighting was his element. And he fought with a
passion, a tenacity and a success such as few could rival. His work
on the first Rheinische Zeitung (1842), the Paris Vorwarts (1844),
the Deutsche Brusseler Zeitung (1847), the Neue Rheinische Zeitung
(1848-49), the New York Tribune (1852-61), and, in addition to
these, a host of militant pamphlets, work in organisations in Paris,
Brussels and London, and finally, crowning all, the formation of the
great International Working Men's Association -- this was indeed an
achievement of which its founder might well have been proud even if
he had done nothing else.
And, consequently, Marx was the best hated and most calumniated man
of his time. Governments, both absolutist and republican, deported
him from their territories. Bourgeois, whether conservative or ultra-
democratic, vied with one another in heaping slanders upon him. All
this he brushed aside as though it were a cobweb, ignoring it,
answering only when extreme necessity compelled him. And he died
beloved, revered and mourned by millions of revolutionary fellow
workers -- from the mines of Siberia to California, in all parts of
Europe and America -- and I make bold to say that, though he may
have had many opponents, he had hardly one personal enemy.
His name will endure through the ages, and so also will his work.

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