“There’s class warfare, all right, but it’s my class, the rich class, that’s making war, and we’re winning.” - Warren Buffet, capitalist billionaire. Since the rise of slave-states in ancient times humans have been divided into classes. Different groups of humans belong to different classes depending on their relation to the means of production (the machinery and technology used to create the things people use). Because of these varying relations to the means of production, different classes also have different interests. Classes with opposing interests are always entrenched in a struggle against each other. This is class struggle. It is through this struggle, and the subsequent evolution of the means of production (improvement of technology, i.e. from the windmill to the power plant) that history has progressed, from the slave-state to feudalism, and from feudalism to capitalism. Because of the uneven development of the world and the rise of powerful countries, different parts of the world can be in different historical stages of development at any given time. It is even possible for remnants of past historical stages to continue to exist along side the a new historical stage (i.e. feudal property relations and a rural peasantry in the countryside within a capitalist country). Despite this uneven development, capitalism is today the dominate social system in the world. Under capitalism, those who own the means of production (the rich minority) make up the capitalist class (or bourgeoisie), which is the ruling class. Those who use those means of production to create wealth (the exploited majority) make up the working class (or proletariat). The working class is made up of those who have no way to earn a living other than working for the capitalists – that is, selling their labor-power (this includes the unemployed who haven’t or can’t find a capitalist to sell their labor-power too). Under capitalism working people are wage-slaves. Lacking control of the means of production, they must sell their labor to the capitalist bosses or starve. The capitalists, to whom workers are nothing more than another commodity, make their profits through the purchase of this labor at prices well below its value. A simple example of this is a worker who assembles simple toys in a capitalist’s factory for $5 an hour. The toys themselves are made by combining two plastic pieces, which the capitalist purchases for $1 each. The worker assembles ten toys an hour, so the capitalist has put forward $25 to create 10 new toys. The capitalist then sells the ten completed toys for $3 each, thus bringing in $30. Since the materials the toys were made of cost the capitalist $20, and the hour of labor of the worker cost him $5, he made a profit of $5. That profit came from the exploitation of the worker! The twenty plastic pieces alone were only worth $20. It was the labor of the worker that added value to those pieces, allowing them to be resold for an additional $10. But instead of receiving the full value she created ($10), the worker only receives a fraction ($5), and the parasitic capitalist keeps the rest. What's worse, the worker who created 10 toys in an hour can only afford to buy 1 of them with the wages she received for an hour of work. While this is an admittedly basic example, this is how capitalism functions; and this is the role of the working class -- the class that creates all wealth, but receives only enough of it in return to stay alive and continue producing workers -- which makes it the only truly revolutionary class. The working class has allies, like poor farmers, who also have interests that are diametrically opposed to those of the capitalists. The vast majority of people on earth are a either a part of the working class or allied with it. The Petit-bourgeois (or middle class), is made up of those who own small businesses or serve as managers or administrators for the capitalists. They have no natural allies, and in fact may have interests in common with either of the main opposing classes, though they are more likely to side with the capitalists than with the working class, since they have a stake in capitalism. Since the capitalist class controls the means of production, they also control society. Of course, they rule in their own interests. The interests of this ruling class are diametrically opposed to the interests of the working class, which creates all wealth but controls none of it, and its allies. There is a constant struggle going on between these classes: the class war. Because of varying conditions and contradictions there are times that this class struggle sharpens and explodes into open conflict, and other times when it appears (at least on the surface) that there is no struggle going on at all. But we even when everything looks “peaceful” it’s not. Society is constantly in motion. The only constant is change. Throughout our lives we're told things to make us think that society will continue to go on as they are forever. The widespread belief of this falsehood is in the interests of the rulers. As we explained, the class struggle and development of the means of production continue to push society forward. This is always true, even when it may be hard to tell that any change is happening at all. Remember that empires have lasted over a thousand years in the past, only to fall apart. In recent history, in most of the world, the ruling (capitalist) class has been waging a one sided war on the working class and its allies. This is because the capitalist class consciously acts in its own interests; while the workers and their allies to a large degree do not. The capitalists do whatever is in their power to keep the working class from gaining consciousness (i.e. promoting divisions amongst us on “racial,” ethnic, and religious lines; distracting and fooling us with the media – which they own and thus control; carrying out minor reforms while leaving the root causes of our problems intact; convincing workers to support capitalist political parties; pushing the myths of "national unity" and the disappearance of classes; etc.). Despite all this, through the continuing class struggle (and especially in periods when it sharpens and explodes into open conflict), the working class and its allies will become conscious of their own interests, and will finally unite and overthrow the capitalists reign of terror. Of course, the capitalists will not give up their positions of power without a life-or-death struggle. It will be, and has been, a intense fight with tremendous victories and disappointing set backs but eventually, due to the very nature of capitalism itself, we will prevail. The better informed and organized our class the sooner it will be; and the sooner all of humanity will be much better off. When the capitalist class is overthrown on a world scale and the working class becomes the ruling class, the next historical period will have been reached. It is then that the material basis for a classless society will finally begin to take shape; and the transition toward a free, just, and equal social order will have begun.