We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
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Friday, August 19. 2016
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Is it too late to grant Daniel citizenship and draft him as our candidate?
Benito Mussolini, who developed fascism, was an Italian socialist and communist, Fascism was the Italian version of communism. Mussolini had a problem with communism, how do you have a proletariat revolution when you have no proletariat to speak of? He decided no revolution was needed.
Even the most stubborn socialists cannot fail to admit that there are various plans for the construction of the future utopia, incompatible with one another. There is the Soviet pattern of all-round socialization of all enterprises and their outright bureaucratic management; there is the German pattern of Zwangswirtschaft, towards the complete adoption of which the Anglo-Saxon countries are manifestly tending; there is guild socialism, under the name of corporativism still very popular in some Catholic countries. There are many other varieties.
von Mises, Ludwig (2010-12-16). Planned Chaos
"Zwangswirtschaft (German) is an economic system entirely subject to government control. "Zwang" means compulsion, "Wirtschaft" means economy. The English language equivalent for Zwangswirtschaft is something like compulsory economy"
I agree with everything he says, and he says it well. But, he has the same problem that American conservatives have. He doesn't know how to change things, how to affect history. Progressives and socialists know how to change the course of history. They do have an easier sales pitch, but we still need to figure out a better strategy than just having good arguments. It's hard to convince a true poor person with an academic, philosophical argument.
To be fair, the success of the Marxist agents in getting socialism ignorantly defined as the state "ownership" of the means of production was quite the coup. That is not how socialism was defined by Marx or by anyone prior to the 1920s. Government control of the means of production, as in the fascist model and democratic socialist models of socialism was just as effective.
But the atrocities of the Communists required that some differentiation be made to avoid despoiling the progress of socialism in the West. Thus the naive definition and the wholesale propaganda that Communism was different than socialism. Historically, the words were used interchangeably.
The term “socialism,” when it was new in the second part of the 1830s, meant exactly the same as “communism”—i.e., the nationalization of the means of production. “Communism” was the more popular term in the beginning. Slowly the term “communism” fell into oblivion and the term “socialism” came into use almost exclusively.
Socialist parties, social democratic parties, were formed and their fundamental dogma was the Communist Manifesto. In 1918, Lenin needed a new term to distinguish his group of socialists from those groups which he called “social traitors.” So he gave to the term “communism” a new meaning; he used it to refer, not to the final goal of socialism and communism, but only to the tactical means for attaining them. Until Stalin, communist meant simply a better method--the revolutionary method--as against the peaceful, socialist, method of the "socialist traitors." At the end of the 1920s, without great success, Stalin in the Third International tried to give a different meaning to the term “communism.” However, Russia is still called the Union of the Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR).
--von Mises, Ludwig. Marxism Unmasked (1952)
If we go by Stalin, the world has never seen communism as so far, in all attempts, the wealth created by the socialist methods of production has failed to materialize, or at least be shared with the masses.
[quote]What Stalin calls socialism corresponds by and large to Marx’s concept of the “early phase” of communism. Stalin reserves the term communism exclusively for what Marx called the “higher phase” of communism. Socialism, in the sense in which Stalin has lately used the term, is moving towards communism, but is in itself not yet communism. Socialism will turn into communism as soon as the increase in wealth to be expected from the operation of the socialist methods of production has raised the lower standard of living of the Russian masses to the higher standard which the distinguished holders of important offices enjoy in present-day Russia.
von Mises, Ludwig (1947). Planned Chaos (LvMI)
In fact, socialist theory was based on class struggle, and while Nazis sometimes mouthed socialist platitudes, Nazi theory was explicitly and fundamentally based on an existential battle between the races.
Socialism IS fascism. The logical conclusion of subordinating
individual rights to some "greater good," and concentrating all power in the hands of a tiny political elite is the very definition
of a fascist police state.
That is what Marx designed the system to be from the very beginning. Sure, you have somewhat benign social democracies like Sweden, but mass murder on an industrial scale can even happen there. It is like the good king. Heaven and hell can be determined by which side of the bed he got up on. Or, he could simply die and his successor might be a
monster. It's all about the power.
The greatest myth the left ever perpetrated was the left-
right scale. It claimed that Soviet "Socialism" was the polar
opposite of Nazi fascism. The implication is that if fascism
is evil, socialism must represent the good. Socialism and
fascism differ only to the degree to which private property
rights are tolerated.
So, that begs the question: One cannot claim two nearly
identical evils to be diametrically opposite to one another.
The opposite of evil is good, so should not liberal democracies
(In the old fashioned sense of liberal) be the opposite of
both of these evils?
Leonard Jones: The logical conclusion of subordinating individual rights to some "greater good," and concentrating all power in the hands of a tiny political elite is the very definition of a fascist police state.
No. That's the definition of ideological authoritarianism. Many ideologies may subordinate individual rights to some "greater good".
Fascism /ˈfæʃɪzəm/ is a form of radical authoritarian nationalism that came to prominence in early 20th-century Europe, influenced by national syndicalism. Fascism originated in Italy during World War I and spread to other European countries. Fascism opposes liberalism, Marxism and anarchism and is usually placed on the far-right within the traditional left–right spectrum.
Leonard Jones: The implication is that if fascism is evil, socialism must represent the good.
The political left-right is a spectrum, which includes extremism on both sides of the continuum.
Leonard Jones: One cannot claim two nearly identical evils to be diametrically opposite to one another.
You are conflating ends (whether racial or national supremacy on the far right, or total social and economic equality on the far left) with means (such as authoritarianism).
Not being a cut and paste Internet troll, I prefer to learn by the
old fashioned method of reading books. My point was that
all authoritarian collectivist ideologies are nearly identical
in their basic political / economic philosophies. The difference
between the Soviets and the Nazis were too small to calculate.
They were BOTH leftist-socialist-collectivist ideologies. The
part about the left-right scale is from personal experience.
As a former member of the youth auxiliary of the Progressive
Labor Party, I know a little about the subject. If the the term
"Ideological authoritarianism" is not an apt description of
ALL forms of totalitarian collectivist regimes, no better
I was not referring to dictionary definitions, (Mostly written
by liberals) I know them all I was referring to real world results
in the USSR, China, Vietnam, Cambodia, Cuba, Nazi Germany, etc. In other words, examples of the intended goal of Karl
Marx. Each one of these states instantly became the very
definition of a fascist police state, and engaged in mass murder
on an industrial level.
Barry Obiteme's BFF (Bill Ayers) was overheard by an FBI
undercover agent calling for the extermination of some 25
million American citizens. The context was the bitter
clingers who would resist the reeducation camps.
The bloom is long off this rose. They all know just what they
Leonard Jones: My point was that all authoritarian collectivist ideologies are nearly identical in their basic political / economic philosophies.
Your previous claim was "concentrating all power in the hands of a tiny political elite is the very definition of a fascist police state." Notably, you have now added the term "collectivist" to your claim. Does this mean you have abandoned your original claim?
Leonard Jones: The difference between the Soviets and the Nazis were too small to calculate.
Communism is based on class struggle, while Nazism is based on race conflict. The ends are very different. In the former, the vision is of the world enjoying an egalitarian utopia. In the latter, the vision is of Germany subjugating or destroying everyone else.
Leonard Jones: They were BOTH leftist-socialist-collectivist ideologies.
The vast majority of scholars place fascism on the political right, and that is where they found their support.
Nazism and the Radical Right in Austria 1918-1934, Lauridsen.
The Routledge companion to fascism and the far right, Paul Davies.
The Culture of Fascism: Visions of the Far Right in Britain, edited by Gottlieb & Linehan.
Fascism Past and Present, West and East: An International Debate on Concepts and Cases in the Comparative Study of the Extreme Right, Griffin et al.
France in The Era of Fascism: Essays on the French Authoritarian Right, edited by Jenkins.
Fascism and Neofascism: Critical Writings on the Radical Right in Europe (Studies in European Culture and History), edited by Weitz & Fenner.
That's how the term was used then, and how the term is used today. The term fascism or neo-Nazi is even today applied to radicals on the political right.
Leonard Jones: "Ideological authoritarianism" is not an apt description of ALL forms of totalitarian collectivist regimes, no better description exists.
They are not identical. There are non-collectivist forms of ideological authoritarianism, such as found in many non-communist dictatorships.
Leonard Jones: Each one of these states instantly became the very definition of a fascist police state, and engaged in mass murder on an industrial level.
You are again conflating ends and means. The Mongols engaged in mass murder on a scale even greater than Hitler, but they were not fascist or communist.
Leonard Jones: The context was the bitter clingers who would resist the reeducation camps.
Good example. Reeducation camps are a typically communist notion. That's because the ideology is based on class not race. For a Nazi, you can't reeducate a Jew.
Left and right is a fantasy designed by the left to saddle their opponents with Hitler.
The political spectrum is a continuum. Freedom to bondage.
You are either for more freedom or for less. It appears that most people are in favor of constraining the freedom of others without realizing their own will be constrained as well.
Steven Wilson: Left and right is a fantasy designed by the left to saddle their opponents with Hitler.
Heh. Parse that!
In any case, the left-right dichotomy dates to the French Revolutionary period, which long predates Hitler.
Steven Wilson: The political spectrum is a continuum. Freedom to bondage.
Sure, the degree of government authority is also a common spectrum of interest, from anarchy to totalitarianism. History indicates that both extremes are detrimental to the human condition.