An ideal economic concept which, as far as I know (all of history not having been recorded), has not yet been put completely into practice, though it has been partly achieved in Cuba and, according to the Cuban Constitution, it is the goal of the Cuban Revolution; and incidental references by Fidel Castro, his brother, and a number of smart Cuban militants with whom I've talked indicate that the Cuban concept is about the same as is perfectly clearly articulated below by a master of the English language (me).
DEFINITION OF COMMUNISM:
Communism IS or could be and should be an economic process or system of processes, i.e. a procedure, through which all or practically all the goods and services actually needed by all the people of a civilized state, so that they can all live well enough, are produced and distributed, the work and benefits being shared as equally as is both fair and practical by all the participants, and the total cost of the benefits thus shared being ONLY each one's honest effort to participate fairly in the procedure.
SIMPLE OVERVIEW OF COMMUNIST WORKING PROCEDURE:
All necessary production and distribution are nationalized.
The government maintains a flexible, constantly adjusted inventory of all goods and services everyone NEEDS
to live an equally good life. The work and working hours
required to produce the needed goods and services is determined.
That work is distributed to all able-bodied working-age men and women.
Prices of all goods and services are fixed forever. All
adult consumers are paid the same salary or provided the same buying power, i.e. enough to buy the
goods and services they need. Then, though nobody works
anything close to a 40-hour work week, everybody is
employed and has access to all the goods and services he needs to live a good life.
BEYOND THE BASICS:
In a well conceived and organized communist system, to the extent practically possible, work is distributed in accordance with individual avocation and preference, while the goods and services provided include materials, facilities, means and opportunity for creative, rationally predictable additional production and activity by each individual related to his or her own personal interest in art, music, flower beds, unique clothes, etc. as long as nothing is produced for capitalist purposes. In fact, the elimination of all the money-tending and artificial work that weighs down capitalism will provide participants in a communist system with an unprecedented amount of free time.
WHAT COMMUNISM IS NOT:
Communism is NOT an ideology (which has become a nonsense word), OR a political system (stupidly compared to democracy), OR a religious doctrine dogmatically extracted from coincidentally selected (coherent and sometimes incoherent) phraseology of Karl Marx.
WHAT COMMUNISM IS:
Communism IS a perfectly practical economic procedure that the people of a civilized civil state need to employ in order to live together in a civilized way and to provide and maintain as good a life for every participant as is practically possible. That IS the logical purpose of a civilized state and any plan to achieve that purpose must have an economic dimension, and that economic dimension logically has to be communist. Obviously, participants in a communist economic system are expected to participate. Beyond that, they are as free as they can be as long as they don't violate the rights of other participants to economic and social equality and dignity by disrupting the communist system (OR civilization itself OR the eco-system). Communism is simply the logical economic DIMENSION of a civilized life and myths about its automatic oppressiveness are nonsense.
A working communist state DOES NOT NEED LEADERS in the heroic or exalted sense of the word. A stagnant capitalist-dominated people obviously DO NEED temporary leaders like Fidel Castro to motivate them to change directions and to guide them toward a civilized (logically communist) state. BUT civilization/communism, once achieved, no longer needs kings, presidents, or generals or anything like that. It needs a very well written blueprint to stipulate procedure and a management team to organize and maintain the organizational effectiveness of its daily, weekly, monthly, yearly procedural variations, to keep its bases and parameters (including population) stable and honest, to guard against aberration while adapting intelligently to civilized innovation, while keeping even its flexibility constructive and in accordance with the definition of the purpose and limitations of a civilized state as clarified under Civil State, one of the two most important documents on this site.
The naturally competitive person, adventurously willing to settle for disaster if he fails, who thinks he wants the "right" to "win" a struggle for survival and/or conquest and thereby achieve a better life than Mr. Jones's life is not an aberration, but he's wrong. His ideal jungle WILL devolve into chaos and barbarism. The naturally civilized person (even if he strongly dislikes most other people - as I do, for instance), must realize that civilization cannot be selectively enjoyed; civilization has to be for everybody or it is for nobody.