Marx’s analysis was prescient to his times. One can find little fault in his analysis of capitalist imperialism and the centripetal forces of capitalist finance. It’s when he addresses the microeconomic level that his analysis goes astray, principally with the discredited labor theory of value. (I”m sure die-hard Marxists will still defend it.)

Marx’s class analysis was derived from the production processes of the industrial age and must undergo serious modifications to fit the Information Age. The value and control over personal data is becoming as important as that of personal labor. This data becomes monetized as capital, so the old capitalist bugaboo is still with us.

This is mostly why Marx’s prescriptions for reforming capitalism, or advancing a fuzzy theory of post-capitalist socialism, were and are completely unworkable. The attempts lie on the ash heaps of history. Thus, we must be careful about what parts of Marxist intellectual history we embrace.

The centripetal forces of finance compounded by the network effects of technology are the most serious threats to modern free societies. These forces are creating a widening chasm between the haves and have-nots that is reflected in the ownership and control of productive capital assets. It is politically and economically unsustainable.

But the way backward is not the way forward. We need to reconceptualize how risk, reward, and value is distributed through the information economy and address that rather than fall back into obsolete ideas of industrial laborism. The gig economy does not glorify the labor of work, it abhors it.

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I am currently a tech start-up founder in the creative media original content space. Social science academic and author.

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