November 12, 2007


A comeback for the 'Great Man' theory? (Lynda Hurst, Nov 03, 2007, Toronto Star)

It emerged this week that Karl Marx, the father of communism, suffered from a chronic and excruciating skin disease with known psychological effects that might have had an impact on his political theories.

The 19th-century revolutionary thinker had a condition called hidradenitis suppurativa, in which the sweat glands in his armpits and groin become blocked and inflamed and his skin covered in boils and carbuncles.

Or so argues Sam Shuster, a professor of dermatology at Britain's University of East Anglia.

"In addition to reducing his ability to work, which contributed to his depressing poverty, hidradenitis greatly reduced his self-esteem," writes Shuster in the current British Journal of Dermatology.

"This explains his self-loathing and alienation, a response reflected by the alienation Marx developed in his writing."

It's hardly news that Marx was a miserable bastard who tried to explain that away by blaming the Universe. The question is: why was the rest of the modern Left so attracted to him and his ravings?

Posted by Orrin Judd at November 12, 2007 6:17 AM

That's easy - they hate (and fear) God just as much as Marx did.

Posted by: jim hamlen at November 12, 2007 8:12 AM

Marx promised a return to the tribe. Freedom is a tough road. It's not surprising many find it too hard......

Posted by: Robert Mitchell Jr. at November 12, 2007 11:56 AM

Because they are all miserable bastards who try to explain it away by blaming the universe?

Posted by: Andrew X at November 12, 2007 3:24 PM

It almost makes one believe that G-d is not dead yet.

Posted by: erp at November 12, 2007 4:49 PM

Because they, too, have dysfunctional armpits and groins.

Posted by: ghostcat at November 12, 2007 5:00 PM

Jim nailed it. Marxism is about 1/3 economics and 2/3 ranting worthy of Louis Farrakahn. Its attraction is for the mentally and/or spiritually disordered, the Oedipal, the resentful.

This explains why it only caught in backward, benighted regions where Boxerism, atavistic reaction against the West, prolonged its unnatural life.

Posted by: Lou Gots at November 12, 2007 6:02 PM

It is the old story of the embittered geeks (marxists) versus the jocks and cheerleaders (anyone with a life).

Posted by: Mikey [TypeKey Profile Page] at November 13, 2007 7:50 AM

Even the 1/3 of Marxism that is economics isn't very good, as even Marxist economists concede.

Applied Marxism is the endpoint of the conceited intellectual dream of rationally running everything. The belief that this can be done naturally produces anger at God for supposedly botching the project and requiring correction. The spiritual needs of these people are then projected onto communism and the creation of a purported paradise on earth. This is my theory, anyway.

Posted by: Matt Murphy at November 13, 2007 5:28 PM