Tuesday, January 8, 2013

The Continuing Appeal of Marxism

You would think they would stop, wouldn't you? How many times do their little schemes fail, and yet they keep coming back for another try? I am talking about the lefties of our world, the ones who still can't bring themselves to say Socialism and Communism are bad ideas with a long, brutal, and public track record to prove it.

One would have thought that with the inglorious death of the USSR, the Don of The International Marxist Mafia, its foul ideology would have vanished never to blight the planet again. Not so. Granted, with the Soviet demise, international Marxism in the form we knew it for nearly the entire 20th century did die. The forces, however, that fathered and nurtured Marxism did not die, and remain alive and well. Those, of course, are envy, resentment, and fear of competition. Those forces won Obama re-election, and are sweeping through the rest of the western world like a new Black Plague--e.g., see what is happening in France.

The envious, resentful, and fearful of the world found and find in Marxism's pseudo-scientific babel analysis and language an "explanation" for any event. If it did nothing else, Marxism "explained" why nothing was the fault of the envious, resentful, and fearful: the rich were rich, because they made the poor, poor; the successful succeeded because they made those who failed, fail. Old Marxism also fed the egos and provided a way for otherwise frustrated and failed "intellectuals" to pursue Napoleonic dreams. Vast conspiratorial forces oppress mankind; these forces can be exposed and defeated only by and with the leadership of an enlightened elite who will lead the wretched of the earth to the socialist promised land, and then, of course, rule over them to make sure the old habits do not return.

The USSR's end forced the envious, resentful, and fearful and their leaders to adapt, transform, fracture and downgrade a belief system that had "explained" everything into less-satisfying sub-sets, each focused on a particular topic: most prominently, feminism, environmentalism and the rapidly growing one of "international law." Despite their seemingly different concerns, all these sub-sets shared much in common, to wit, at their core lay anti-capitalist, anti-American and increasingly anti-Semitic emotions disguised as analytical constructs. Over the past twenty or so years, we have seen these different strands re-meld into the Anti-Globalization Movement (AGM) and its many subsets, e.g., Occupy Wall Street, and the Democratic Party. While it doesn't have the military force behind it of the old Marxism, nor has it yet formulated a clear vision of the world with which it seeks to replace the current world (there is no AGM Das Kapital), it shares with old-time Marxism a reliance on pseudo-science and a vanguard elite. Also from Marxism come much of its language and tactics, as well as the goals of disrupting economic development of the capitalist kind and bringing down the United States and the global order it dominated until recently--until the US, itself, has joined in the assault.

One particularly interesting sub-set of the AGM with which I have had some personal experience,is the grouping that encompasses "movements" for the "rights of the indigenous."

Having served and visited extensively in Central and South American countries with large "indigenous" populations, I can state that America's "indigenous" cultures largely ceased to exist hundreds of years ago: "indigenous" culture today means rural poverty. As the saying goes, "I was born at night, but not last night," so even I understand, therefore, that calling to protect "indigenous culture,"as we see in Ecuador, really means seeking to preserve rural poverty; to keep people poor, sick, illiterate, and isolated from the great and small wonders of our age. It means helping condemn them to superstition, disease, and of watching their puny children struggle to live past the age of five. It's a call to keep certain people as an ethnic curio on the shelf for the enjoyment of European and North American anthropologists or, equally vile, as exploitable pawns for the use of political activists.

When I hear these calls, I think, "We don't protect rural poverty in the USA. Western man no longer lives in caves or trees, terrorized by solar eclipses and at the mercy of an unforgiving environment. Why should these people? Why should humans live little better than animals in disease-infested jungles, or exposed on cold, wind-swept plains?" It proves amazing, for example, to see how much effort "pro-indigenous activists," often themselves urban upper-class types or foreigners, expend on "land reform." Instead of working to develop an economy where land ownership does not determine whether one lives or dies, the activists seek to chain the "indigenous" to, at best, a brutal life of scratching out a living on postage stamp-size plots of land. Often land reform involves "giving" the rural poor these plots but without the right to sell or use them to secure loans from banks. The poverty and hopelessness increase.

This segues to one of the great and evil myths promulgated by activists, i.e., the Native Americans' love for the land. As one Minnesota activist told me, "they would rather die than give up their contact with Mother Earth." Really? You can believe that if you want, but everywhere I've gone in Latin America, rural people seek to head for the city, or, even better, the USA. They want medicine, Coca-Cola, TVs, cars, motorcycles, corn flakes, and indoor plumbing -- they want to live like the activists do in Minnesota. Those who stay on the land, in particular the men, do not radiate any particular love for the land, the flora, the fauna, or each other. They fish with dynamite and mercury; burn or cut huge tracts of forest; treat their "sacred lakes" as sewers; drink themselves stupid; and engage in often lethal fights and horrendous cruelty towards women, children and animals. In other words, they behave as uneducated, poor people have throughout all history and all cultures. Note to activists: the "indigenous" are human.

The foreign activists are particularly loathsome; they invent and distort history, introducing distinctly 20th and 21st century concepts into the study of pre-Colombian cultures and their remnants. Worse, these activists seek to manipulate poor people for their own political agenda, and often get them killed in pursuit of "liberation theology" or some other fashionable cliche. They overwhelm and corrupt legitimate "indigenous" activists with money, trips, attention, and promises of fame. In exchange, the once-legitimate local activist becomes a servant of Americas Watch, Amnesty International, etc., required to produce ever more dire stories and accusations. Or they merely make up a leader for the "indigenous"; the most famous being Guatemala's Rigoberta Menchu Tum -- virtually unknown inside Guatemala (having lived most of her life abroad); a creation of European Marxists; a tool of Guatemala's Communist URNG insurgency; a pro-Castro hater of the USA; an "author" of a major hoax; and, as you would expect in such cases, the winner of the Nobel Peace Prize. The foreign activists appear like a modern version of the ancient Jewish legend of the Golem to save the people, end up creating havoc . . . and then, went it all comes crashing down they run to their Embassies flashing US or European passports, gaining safety and fame as modern Joans of Arc, leaving the "indigenous" to take the hit.

These same impulses we see at work in the Obama administration and among its envious, resentful, and fearful followers. The motto "You didn't build that!" is quite real for them. They cannot accept that enterprising individuals risk their capital, their health, and their time in pursuit of a dream, and that they earn the rewards that come from that--if and when they come. For the Obamistas, as with the old Marxists of the last century, legitimacy comes from the public sector. It is the government, in the hands of the enlightened elite, that will decide how much we get to keep, on what we can spend it, and, of course, seek to deny us the right to defend ourselves. They want to destroy all independent sources of power and influence, and remove every conceivable limit on the power of the state--as long as it is in the hands of an "educated" elite who knows what is best, and knows how to make irrevocable changes in the social, educational, and cultural fibre of a nation.

Nothing I have seen over the past several months and years can convince me that better times lie ahead. The Marxist virus goes dormant, mutates, and re-emerges.

25 comments:

  1. I think that we are living under a new category of government. Elite-ism. Harvard and Yale filter and indoctrinate all of our leadership both Republican and Democrat. Ivory tower elites who lack real world experience are in charge.

    Marxism is no longer an economic model or social endpoint, it merely exists as a proven set of tools to control the uninformed masses.

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  2. I must say, Mr. Diplomad, that is the truest, finest explanation of this mess we are in I have heard. By George, I believe you have nailed it.

    Now, if you would be so kind... the pitbulls... they're getting close...

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  3. Re Marxism and "indigenous cultures":

    I ran into the Yao in both northwestern Guangdong in China and the Golden Triangle area of Laos. In the latter, you saw Yao (and other Hill Tribes) coming to the market in Chiang Mai wearing jeans, T-shirts, and sneakers; in the former, you saw them in indigenous garb. The reason for the latter was not ethnic pride or a Marxist government's "enlightened" policies, but that in China in those days, a child's store-bought dress would put a rural Yao family back a couple months' earnings.

    Also, while training to get certified as an ESOL teacher after the Foreign Service, I had the great pleasure of setting an education professor straight that China minority languages policy was actually framed more to facilitate administration (as with most government policies elsewhere) than to help the people on the ground.

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  4. I would disagree with the point that "their little schemes fail, and yet they keep coming back for another try." Quite the contrary. There is no better system than socialism for concentrating power and relative wealth in the hands of an elite few. That's why socialism keeps coming back and for those at the top, it sure beats doing real work for a living and makes it easy put down any challenges from the little people below.

    If you consider that Obama and his cronies do not care about the actual results of their policies on the lives of the American citizenry, then it all makes sense. They only care about increasing the size and power of government and voter perception of the results. Their goal is to use government power to eliminate all aspects of American exceptionalism, especially the Bill of Rights in the Constitution and the US economy's ability to fund the world's most powerful military. Once the US is fundamentally transformed into "just another country," it can be easily subjected to a global government superstructure controlled by... well, you know who.

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    1. "I would disagree with the point that "their little schemes fail, and yet they keep coming back for another try." Quite the contrary. There is no better system than socialism for concentrating power and relative wealth in the hands of an elite few."

      Bingo! First they sell enough chumps on the idea that everything belonging to the evil producers can be redistributed, to get enough votes and/or manpower to overthrow the existing regime, then take control of enough powers of government to pay off the apparatchiks to squelch any problems when the chumps figure out they have been had.

      Eric

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  5. One of the biggest other items they don't want imported to the indigenous peoples is Christianity (makes sense though because then the people would be worshiping a different God than the one that the liberals want them to worship). I read or saw an interview once from a person from one of the indigenous tribes who had been "tainted" with an introduction to Christianity and he said Christianity was the best thing that every happened to his village because it broke the dark cycle of violence that has existed for centuries. Christianity liberated his people more than any other "modern" concept that they had been introduced to by foreigners. His tribe now takes the Gospel to other tribes in the area.

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    1. Yes, I can understand how the chief was thinking. Personal observation and experience trumps all naysayers, yes? Is America all that different? I personally think not.

      For the United States we have:

      Destroy practical Christianity (via moral corruption) + dividing society (class warfare, feminism, racism, theft of wealth, etc) + strictures on freedom (over-regulation, corrupt judicial system, empowering NGO's, etc.) should equal a formidable equation for social conflict and eventual slavery.

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  6. While on a break from hunting perdiz with the German ambassador in CAR one morning in 1988, I commented on the failure that Marxism represented. I expected him to agree; after all one-half his country was poor and bleak while the half he represented was vibrant and booming. He scoffed that Marxism held more than half the world in thrall (or words to that effect) and it was a political philosophy that had existed for a century. Just then the dogs went into a point and our conversation ended, never to be taken up again. (Or some such deux ex machina intervened.)

    But it is a question I have been asking for many years now, essentially since the Hungarian uprising in 1956. If the common folk in Budapest were willing to fight Russian tanks with rocks and small arms, just where was the attraction of this political system that killed whole ethnic groups and gave a small group of leaders huge advantage while keeping the common man in crushing poverty and privation? Even given America's advantage in natural resources and geographic isolation from the warring factions in Europe, hadn't we done more than the USSR (and later China) to bring poor people into the modern world -- educated, housed, entertained (although I still have my reservations about TV) and fed?

    You have asked in this essay many of the questions I still ask, especially how it is American voters could have returned a failed president to power. Having failed to address unemployment he runs on a platform of free birth control? Just what were these voters thinking?

    There is a larger question that you (and I) are not asking, although you came a lot closer than I. And that has something to do with envy-driven politics. The parable of Boris' goat, I think, gets to the question. But I still can't find a way to frame it so that the low information voter will respond to it viscerally instead of merely shrugging and pulling the lever for a presidential candidate who, if elected, will leave him unemployed and on food stamps.

    I think we on the side of the free-market need an author who can dress up this philosophical question in the guise of current social science. Thomas Sowell comes close, but what is needed is a tome the equivalent of Das Kapital, something that people will read and refer to for the next century.

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    1. ..."just what were these voters thinking"...well, let's try, for example, obamaphones, foodstamps, and the promise of lots of other free stuff. That alone, was nearly enough to return him to office...but then, oh, and with just possibly enough voter fraud sprinkled in the right swing states...well, the rest, as they say, is history. As for the elites' continued attraction to totalitarianism, I believe it a trait that comes naturally to those who will forever think themselves as superior and therefore determined, by whatever the means, to exert dominion over all lesser persons, i.e., the workers, the doers, and perhaps the most dangerous of all, the self reliant, leave-me-the-hell-alone crowd.. The Bolsheviks referred to the genre as "former persons" and proceeded apace to exterminate them by the millions.

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  7. To me the salient example of marxist failure was the fences, armed guards, mines, shoot to kill orders, and dogs to keep people in paradise rather than out.

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  8. Love the post, but want to point out a typo at the end of paragraph 4 - you left a fragment there ...

    E

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  9. How do we stop this madness? Can we stop this madness? I fear for our Nation and our world.

    Jib makes a good point. I truly believe one of the things which brought us to this pass is that we have turned our faces away from our Creator. We do that at our peril.

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    1. Absolutely, we have made of ourselves our own gods. Unless we have a massive awakening of people within the church first and then outside the church under current conditions things will steadily get worse. We can't change politics without changing culture which needs a change in worldview. If we try to do anything without changing worldview either the change won't last or won't occur. While the church I attend is fairly orthodox they belong to an apostate organization nationally and there are those in the church who are still very immature. If you want to read some of the stuff I wrote for the church newsletter you can click on my name and it will take you to my blog. might be some stuff that interests you might not.

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  10. I've previously referred to the practices of the "helpers" as wishing to keep the indigenous as "museum dwellers." Even on Indian reservations in the US we don't insist that the Indians remain as they were in the 15th Century. My Indian son-in-law is a trained heavy equipment operator, and when he was still living on the reservation he maintained roads and ran cattle (of European stock) on the 60 acres he inherited.

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  11. When the Soviets and the East Bloc collapsed, I (a USAF officer) had a chance to go visit with some of my former opponents. The West German government fired about 90% of the GDR military, but they kept some of the younger ones who they felt were not so corrupted by the system.

    The ones I met were officers; all had been "communists" because without belonging to the Party, they would have had no career. (One the wives told me her parents were very upset with her when she and her husband joined the Communist Party, but otherwise there was no path forward.)

    I spent about a week with them, mostly eating and drinking and touring their old air base, and sharing our respective views of what we had previously known, or thought we we knew, about each other.

    I have to say our intel briefings of the communist soldier were pretty accurate.

    They, on the other hand, knew only three things about America: drugs, racism, and crime. But once they were allowed to travel and read freely about the west, they became ardent admirers of the West.

    They had all been reduced in grade to Leutnant (2nd Lt for us) and were paid about 1/4 of their West German counter part, and still did not know if the German military would keep them. I asked them if they would go back to the old set up if they could, with their old rank and power and privileges.

    They REPEATEDLY said, "NO! We are capitalists now, we are not going back. Our eyes have been opened!"


    They were, however, shocked to find out that America actually had Communists, and that they were allowed to run free.

    One of them got really angry, red in the face, and shouted, "You should round them all up and SHOOT THEM!"

    Eric

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    1. Eric: Regarding your last post -- we need to get this guy named Attorney General.

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    2. I saw an interview with a Russian pilot a couple of decades ago (I believe he defected before the wall fell) and the Russian recounted attempts by the Soviets (yes, I know, Russians and Soviets are different, bear with me..pun intended or not? You decide) to intercept the fabled SR-71. To say the Russians were humiliated is in their attempts is an understatement. The Russian went on to say that he and his comrades could not understand how a decadent bourgeois capitalist society could produce such a flying marvel. (yeah, I'm paraphrasing)

      -Blake

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  12. My in-laws were missionaries for over 30 years in Bolivia beginning in the mid 50's. They worked with a local "indigenous" tribe of Indians. These Indians were magnificent hunters; could hit flying birds with spears, etc., but like many indigenous peoples, succumbed to alcohol and could usually be found blind drunk in alley ways and gutters and of course, were treated like scum by the Spanish speaking peoples of Bolivia. My in-laws would go out for weeks/months at a time in hollowed out canoes; up horrible river channels and live in the most deplorable conditions, preaching the Word of God and promising a better life. Through all of their trials, they learned the language (very hard, the Indians themselves told them that even if they learned the language, they would sound like "babies" because they would never learn it fully.) and eventually, with the help of other missionaries, translated the Bible into that language. My in-laws & the other missionaries built a school to help the Indians learn Spanish and to teach them of the Word of God. Eventually, they had programs to "Teach the Teachers" and the Indians themselves taught their own people. They advanced enough to now be able to have a seat in the Government of Bolivia and have fought for their land rights.
    I remember my in-laws talking about groups like Save the Children, et al, that would come to their establishment. They wanted good photo ops; good sound bites about the workings of the school and would then appropriate, as their own, the missionaries' work for their audiences back home.
    My in-laws have retired but the work they did with those people back there are remembered to this day and they are very proud of what they and others like them accomplished.

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  13. Everyone, everyone, everyone: The attraction of Marxism actually goes back to Socrates and Plato. They wanted the state held by a cadre of specially raised and trained persons who would be completely "public-spirited" rather than tied to family or other interests. Karl Marx, as an educated European probably imbibed more from the "idealist" philosophies of the past than he cared to admit.

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    1. Important to bear in mind.

      Thanks Kepha.

      Arkie

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  14. Well written. You nail everything right on! Back in my younger years of a high school student at the age of 15 or 16, I used to believe in a very strong support of Communism/Marxism. I hated everything about Capitalism or a Free Country and believe that the government should control every aspect of the people's life of the time until I took a trip to a country ruled by Commies after graduating from high school. It made me took a different approach. Life under communism is miserable. The wealth wasn't distributed among the people as the ideology stated. Sure, dealing with crime isn't much of a problem because those f'ers gives criminals a hole in one or place them into force labor which deter crime from occurring. But looking around and notice how unhappy these people were, concerns me. Imagine government agencies does whatever the hell they want to you because I've seen this happen with my very own eyes. Restriction from your basic human rights. You can't even speak out against the government, even if you make a joke of it. You don't know who you can trust because you don't know if they're part of the secret police which is something like the Gestapos or KGB. Hell, you can be arrested for drawing funny faces on the Dong of Ho Chi Minh. Sounds quite extremely stupid, right? I mean, what kind of BS is that? That ain't right. Remember the Tiananmen Square in 1988? Remember what happened to the people who protest against their government when the truth of the government corruption was exposed? Yeah, tanks and soldiers storm in and slaughter the protesters. How do you like them apples? To make it worst, I used to think that was ok for the government to do, at the age of 16. I've hated freedom that much, at 16 when I've learned about its history. So, now we know who are the power players in this entire mess. I know what needs to be done but only at the right critical moment. :) For the love of America, and her people!

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  15. It's not so much "marxism" that goes dormant, mutates, and re-emerges, but the idea of socialism itself, which antedates marxism by millenia, but which has similar features across many cultures and levels of development. Although I do not accept his idea that there is an actual lineage tht connects Plato with the Brotherhood of the Free Spirit and with the French Revolution onwards, VIctor Shafarevich wrote an excellent description of the perennial socialist idea, despite being limited to the resources of Soviet libraries.

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  16. brilliant.

    you might like this:

    http://astuteblogger.blogspot.com/2009/01/why-left-supports-global-jihad-and-why.html

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