According to my friends at the Socialist end of the spectrum, since the finances of the World went down the gurgler, there has been a distinct upturn in the amount of interest in Marxist ideology. I myself have been asked recently about nationalisation and Socialism but there does seem to be an unclear view of what the German was advocating so here it is, in a nutshell, Marxism. Let's see how much of what Marx predicted has come to fruition.
Marx said that humans had progressed through a series of stages, from slaves society through to capitalism and in each stage a dominant class had exploited the labour of the larger class of workers.
In each of these stages, these ruling classes had become corrupt and had been overthrown and a new system implemented. Marx acknowledged that capitalism was a necessary stage of development but it would be corrupted by unfair distribution of the wealth and the political power that went with it.
These captains of industry would reap the profits while paying the workers a pittance. Under capitalism, Marx claimed, workers are not paid fully or fairly for their labour because the top guys siphon off the profit, earning the owners enormous wealth, while the workers struggle by on poor salaries.
Here is the important bit, this wealth also enables the owners to control the government, which would in turn do the bidding of the wealthy and the powerful to the detriment of the poor and the powerless.
He said that the workers, who would make up the majority, would rise up and overthrow their corrupt leaders and install a fairer system which would benefit the workers who would distribute fairly the share of the profits. This he called Communism from the Latin word for 'shared'.
This is only a quick walk through a small part of Marx's philosophy but wealthy owners, poorly paid staff, money buying influence in seats of power, unfair distribution of profits, angry and disillusioned workers. Even the most right wing hackneyed capitalist can't argue that Mr Marx wasn't a million miles off so far with his theory of how things will pan out.