Category: Socialism Sucks

The real story of the first Thanksgiving

You’ve no doubt heard the well-known story of the first Thanksgiving in Plymouth, Massachusetts. But did you know that what you’ve heard is drastically inaccurate?

According to the writings of William Bradford, the colony’s first governor, the hardships and near-starvation of the entire population occurred because the colonists turned their backs on capitalism. They believed the old lie that an economy based on the concept of “from each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs” can actually work. They instituted a socialist system, and found out that socialism causes disaster:

The harvest of 1623 was different. Suddenly, “instead of famine now God gave them plenty,” Bradford wrote, “and the face of things was changed, to the rejoicing of the hearts of many, for which they blessed God.” Thereafter, he wrote, “any general want or famine hath not been amongst them since to this day.” In fact, in 1624, so much food was produced that the colonists were able to begin exporting corn.

What happened?

After the poor harvest of 1622, writes Bradford, “they began to think how they might raise as much corn as they could, and obtain a better crop.” They began to question their form of economic organization.

This had required that “all profits & benefits that are got by trade, working, fishing, or any other means” were to be placed in the common stock of the colony, and that, “all such persons as are of this colony, are to have their meat, drink, apparel, and all provisions out of the common stock.” A person was to put into the common stock all he could, and take out only what he needed.

This “from each according to his ability, to each according to his need” was an early form of socialism, and it is why the Pilgrims were starving. Bradford writes that “young men that are most able and fit for labor and service” complained about being forced to “spend their time and strength to work for other men’s wives and children.” Also, “the strong, or man of parts, had no more in division of victuals and clothes, than he that was weak.” So the young and strong refused to work and the total amount of food produced was never adequate.

To rectify this situation, in 1623 Bradford abolished socialism. He gave each household a parcel of land and told them they could keep what they produced, or trade it away as they saw fit. In other words, he replaced socialism with a free market, and that was the end of famines.

For more on the lessons the pilgrims learned, see this piece by Rick Williams, Jr.

Then read about the tragedy of the commons, and consider how that knowledge applies to America’s present disastrous condition.

Thanksgiving: a holiday born out of an early American experiment with socialism

You’ve no doubt heard the well-known story of the first Thanksgiving in Plymouth, Massachusetts. But did you know that what you’ve heard is drastically inaccurate?

According to the writings of William Bradford, the colony’s first governor, the hardships and near-starvation of the entire population occurred because the colonists turned their backs on capitalism. They believed the old lie that an economy based on the concept of “from each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs” can actually work. They instituted a socialist system, and found out that socialism causes disaster:

The harvest of 1623 was different. Suddenly, “instead of famine now God gave them plenty,” Bradford wrote, “and the face of things was changed, to the rejoicing of the hearts of many, for which they blessed God.” Thereafter, he wrote, “any general want or famine hath not been amongst them since to this day.” In fact, in 1624, so much food was produced that the colonists were able to begin exporting corn.

What happened?

After the poor harvest of 1622, writes Bradford, “they began to think how they might raise as much corn as they could, and obtain a better crop.” They began to question their form of economic organization.

This had required that “all profits & benefits that are got by trade, working, fishing, or any other means” were to be placed in the common stock of the colony, and that, “all such persons as are of this colony, are to have their meat, drink, apparel, and all provisions out of the common stock.” A person was to put into the common stock all he could, and take out only what he needed.

This “from each according to his ability, to each according to his need” was an early form of socialism, and it is why the Pilgrims were starving. Bradford writes that “young men that are most able and fit for labor and service” complained about being forced to “spend their time and strength to work for other men’s wives and children.” Also, “the strong, or man of parts, had no more in division of victuals and clothes, than he that was weak.” So the young and strong refused to work and the total amount of food produced was never adequate.

To rectify this situation, in 1623 Bradford abolished socialism. He gave each household a parcel of land and told them they could keep what they produced, or trade it away as they saw fit. In other words, he replaced socialism with a free market, and that was the end of famines.

For more on the lessons the pilgrims learned, see this piece by Rick Williams, Jr.

Then read about the tragedy of the commons, and consider how that knowledge applies to Obamacare.

Another Healthcare.gov design flaw

These are the geniuses to whom you’re entrusting your private health information, America. They promise to keep it secure. Pinky swear. Just like the prices for health insurance they’re trying to keep behind a login wall on Healthcare.gov so that nobody can see every available plan in America all at once until they’ve given up their private information … and … wait, what? They did what? Really??

Obamacare price list leak

Oops.

Do Obama and the statists want a collapse?

We’re fast approaching the infamous “Fiscal Cliff,” yet people seem perplexed that we’re not even tapping the brakes. Some suspect that this all looks almost … intentional.

Guess what? It is. This is the modern version of the Cloward-Piven Strategy:

First proposed in 1966 and named after Columbia University sociologists Richard Andrew Cloward and his wife Frances Fox Piven (both longtime members of the Democratic Socialists of America, where Piven today is an honorary chair), the “Cloward-Piven Strategy” seeks to hasten the fall of capitalism by overloading the government bureaucracy with a flood of impossible demands, thus pushing society into crisis and economic collapse.

In their 1966 article, Cloward and Piven charged that the ruling classes used welfare to weaken the poor; that by providing a social safety net, the rich doused the fires of rebellion. Poor people can advance only when “the rest of society is afraid of them,” Cloward told The New York Times on September 27, 1970. Rather than placating the poor with government hand-outs, wrote Cloward and Piven, activists should work to sabotage and destroy the welfare system; the collapse of the welfare state would ignite a political and financial crisis that would rock the nation; poor people would rise in revolt; only then would “the rest of society” accept their demands.

The key to sparking this rebellion would be to expose the inadequacy of the welfare state. Cloward-Piven’s early promoters cited radical organizer Saul Alinsky as their inspiration. “Make the enemy live up to their (sic) own book of rules,” Alinsky wrote in his 1972 book Rules for Radicals. When pressed to honor every word of every law and statute, every Judaeo-Christian moral tenet, and every implicit promise of the liberal social contract, human agencies inevitably fall short. The system’s failure to “live up” to its rule book can then be used to discredit it altogether, and to replace the capitalist “rule book” with a socialist one.

In 2009, President-Elect Obama wasn’t kidding when he said he wanted to fundamentally transform America:

Now, he’s getting exactly what he wants.

The murderous legacy of statism

Of all tyrannies, a tyranny exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end, for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.

— C.S. Lewis

Whether you call it “progressivism,” “liberalism,” or any of a hundred other names, the worldview of the modern Left is rooted in a history of genocidal violence. The Democrat Party has boldly embraced this ideology, and more than a few Republicans have quietly followed suit. They believe human nature is malleable, that utopia can be achieved, and that they are morally justified in bringing it to pass. To achieve their goal, they have become statists.

Statism definition

When statists take control of a national government, that nation always starts down a path toward mass murder. Unless the statists are removed from power, this is what happens:

Do the rich pay their fair share?

I have questions for people who say “the rich don’t pay their fair share.”

What counts as “rich” to you? Are we looking at net worth? Annual income? Households or individuals? What’s the cutoff for “fair share,” pray tell? 40% of income? 50%? 75%? 100%? Or are we talking about confiscating wealth instead of just income? Should there be salary/wage ceilings?

Effective Federal Tax Rate



fair share

Taxes & Spending

Define the terms you incessantly bleat about, or shut up.

Before you get all wee-wee’d up over 163,000 jobs …

… remember that you can’t get the full picture from news reports that only mention how many jobs were added. The size of the whole population also changed, and so did the size of the labor force. The full picture got worse last month. Click the image to see it at full size:

The Obama Record

If you want the whole story on Obama’s record on jobs and debt, the numbers are public record.

What progressivism leads to

Modern “progressives” are just utopian statists wrapped in warm fuzzy language and feel-good slogans. Utopian statism leads to this:

Lest you think this is all theoretical opposition on my part, allow me to refute that notion right now. My parents, uncles, aunts, and grandparents are refugees from the Soviet invasion of Estonia and Latvia in 1944.  Had they not escaped in time, many of them would have been deported to Siberia — or worse.  My father’s earliest memory involves being helped onto the very last German troop transport ship fleeing the capital city of Tallinn on his 4th birthday, and being given a precious gift of a piece of candy by a German soldier.  That was September 22nd, 1944.  Members of my family who couldn’t leave in time did wind up disappearing into the Gulag Archipelago in Siberia. Brutally warring communists and nazis — utopian statists all — very nearly got my father killed at age 4.

I will resist progressives, their agenda, and their lethally foolish theories until the day I die.

Who was Derrick Bell?

Professor Derrick Bell was one of the earliest and most strident advocates of Critical Race Theory:

Bell believed then, as he does to this day, that whites would support civil rights protections for blacks only if those protections would also promote white self-interest and social status. Since Bell maintains that racial minorities are a permanently oppressed caste — and that racism is a normal, permanent aspect of American life — he reasons that equality before the law is unfair to blacks, whose moral claims are superior to those of whites. He has endorsed a journal dedicated to the “abolition of whiteness,” called Race Traitor, whose motto is “Treason to the white race is loyalty to humanity.”

According to Professor Bell and his fellow Critical Race theorists, existing legal structures are, like American society at large, racist in their very construction. Critical Race Theory suggests that to combat this “institutional racism,” oppressed racial groups have both the right and the duty to decide for themselves, which laws are valid and are worth observing. Critical Race Theory also promotes the use of storytelling narratives in law-review articles to better reflect the “oral traditions” of black experience. Bell has used the technique of placing legal and social commentary into the mouths of invented characters extensively in his writings. While acknowledging that this “style of storytelling” is “less rigorous than the doctrine-laden, citation-heavy law review pieces,” he employs it nonetheless.

He was also a mentor to a young Barack Obama, who idolized the aging racist and organized at least one student demonstration supporting him while the future president was a law student. Selectively-edited footage of that demonstration leaked today, but the raw footage will air tonight thanks to Andrew Breitbart’s happy warriors.

20120307-163346.jpg

3/8 Update: More on Bell and his past.

3/8 Update 2: Well, look what we have here.

An early American experiment with socialism

You’ve no doubt heard the well-known story of the first Thanksgiving in Plymouth, Massachusetts. But did you know that what you’ve heard is drastically inaccurate?
According to the writings of William Bradford, the colony’s first governor, the hardships and near-starvation of the entire population occurred because the colonists turned their backs on capitalism. They believed the old lie that an economy based on the concept of “from each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs” can actually work. They instituted a socialist system, and found out that socialism causes disaster:

The harvest of 1623 was different. Suddenly, “instead of famine now God gave them plenty,” Bradford wrote, “and the face of things was changed, to the rejoicing of the hearts of many, for which they blessed God.” Thereafter, he wrote, “any general want or famine hath not been amongst them since to this day.” In fact, in 1624, so much food was produced that the colonists were able to begin exporting corn.
What happened?
After the poor harvest of 1622, writes Bradford, “they began to think how they might raise as much corn as they could, and obtain a better crop.” They began to question their form of economic organization.
This had required that “all profits & benefits that are got by trade, working, fishing, or any other means” were to be placed in the common stock of the colony, and that, “all such persons as are of this colony, are to have their meat, drink, apparel, and all provisions out of the common stock.” A person was to put into the common stock all he could, and take out only what he needed.
This “from each according to his ability, to each according to his need” was an early form of socialism, and it is why the Pilgrims were starving. Bradford writes that “young men that are most able and fit for labor and service” complained about being forced to “spend their time and strength to work for other men’s wives and children.” Also, “the strong, or man of parts, had no more in division of victuals and clothes, than he that was weak.” So the young and strong refused to work and the total amount of food produced was never adequate.
To rectify this situation, in 1623 Bradford abolished socialism. He gave each household a parcel of land and told them they could keep what they produced, or trade it away as they saw fit. In other words, he replaced socialism with a free market, and that was the end of famines.

For more on the lessons the pilgrims learned, see this piece by Rick Williams, Jr.

Occupy Wall Street becomes Animal Farm

Occupy Wall Street parody by The People's Cube
The parodies almost write themselves, but if you want weapons-grade irony, here it is. I swear I’m not making this up.

On Sunday, October 23, a meeting was held at 60 Wall Street. Six leaders discussed what to do with the half-million dollars that had been donated to their organization, since, in their estimation, the organization was incapable of making sound financial decisions. The proposed solution was not to spend the money educating their co-workers or stimulating more active participation by improving the organization’s structures and tactics. Instead, those present discussed how they could commandeer the $500,000 for their new, more exclusive organization. No, this was not the meeting of any traditional influence on Wall Street. These were six of the leaders of Occupy Wall Street (OWS).

Ms. Holmes also stated at the teach-in that five people in the Finance WG have access to the $500,000 raised by Friends of Liberty Plaza. When Suresh Fernando, the man taking notes, asked who these people are, the leaders of the Structure WG nervously laughed and said that it was hard to keep track of the “constantly fluctuating” heads of the Finance WG. Mr. Fernando made at least four increasingly explicit requests for the names. Each request was turned down by the giggling, equivocating leaders.

But wait … it gets better.

Continue reading

Yeah, just like the Tea Party

Those fun-loving scamps of the Occupy Wall Street movement were caught on film pushing a 78-year-old woman down some stairs the other day. Watch the video below (WARNING: there’s profanity right from the start) and pay attention at ~3:20 in:

Remember when those Tea Party terrorists attacked old people? Remember how Tea Party people used cathedrals and police cars as latrines? Me, too. Those were fun times. The Tea Party’s exactly the same as Occupy Wall street. No difference whatsoever.

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Understanding government employee unions

When labor unions and management negotiate with each other in large corporations in the private sector, the relationship looks something like this.

private sector unions

The owners of a business (the shareholders) hire employees to do the work necessary to make a profit, and they also hire managers to supervise the employees. If the employees decide to form a labor union, the managers represent the owners’ interests in all employment negotiations. The union and the management represent competing interests, so they tend to hold each other in check. Eventually, subject to federal labor law, both sides reach a mutually acceptable agreement and work continues. The corporation makes a profit, and the owners, management, and employees make money.

Now imagine that you’re the Chief Executive Officer at a factory that has no labor union at the moment. You have no ownership share in the business, but you supervise several thousand employees. Your job is to run the place smoothly to enable the business to turn a profit, and in return you’re well compensated with pay, health care, ample vacation time, a corporate car with a driver, frequent opportunities to travel, and a much better retirement package than you’d get working for your competitors. Your life as a corporate CEO feels like neverending sunshine and lollipops.

But you’re greedy.

A small group of union organizers approaches you during a coffee break and pulls you aside. They assure you that the employees are about to vote in favor of forming a union, and the vote tally will not be close. Knowing that you would be in charge of negotiating on behalf of the owners, they hand you a thick wad of cash and discreetly suggest that you negotiate a favorable deal with them whenever a dispute arises, one that’s heavily lopsided in favor of the union. In return, these organizers promise to pay you well. If some of the shareholders get wind of your betrayal and move to replace you, the union bosses promise to protect your job by singing your praises at all shareholder meetings, and they also promise to destroy the reputations of any potential replacements waiting in the wings.

You agree, and the factory unionizes. The situation now looks like this.

government unions

Although your job still officially requires you to represent the owners’ interests and run the factory profitably, you are now unofficially on the union’s side. You still draw a paycheck from the owners, but you also secretly receive envelopes stuffed with cash skimmed from union membership dues.

Working to grow the business is much harder than simply letting things slide while collecting kickbacks from the union bosses, so you take the easy road. Every time the union gets hungry for more money, you “negotiate” in form but surrender in substance, funneling more and more of the owners’ money to your union boss buddies. The union grows wealthier and more powerful, and so do you. The business grows weaker and weaker, until it stops turning a profit and begins to shrink.

The process accelerates. You and your union benefactors become lethal parasites attached to the company. The owners are forced to cut costs to the bone and lay off employees to avoid going bankrupt, but the union demands continue. To the union bosses — and you — the business only exists to funnel money into your wallets, not to produce anything useful to society. When the factory finally grinds to a halt and dies, you and the union bosses shake your heads with mock regret, bemoan the sad fate of the unemployed workers whose jobs you destroyed, and move on to look for a healthy and parasite-free host.

Pretty offensive scenario, no? Now consider this, which is actually happening right now:

government unions

This is exactly the same setup as described in the scenario above, but now you’re the taxpayer, the Democrat politician is the manager ostensibly working for you but actually draining your wallet, and the public employee union boss is the dirtbag handing out your cash to the Democrat politician he’s “negotiating” with. Want to know what’s even worse? Not only is this legal, it’s celebrated openly.

Franklin D. Roosevelt, that icon of big government progressivism, was frequently pressured to allow government employees to form unions, but even he resisted. FDR saw the inherent crookedness in public employee unions, and objected.

Letter on the Resolution of Federation of Federal Employees Against Strikes in Federal Service
August 16, 1937
Franklin D. Roosevelt
1937

My dear Mr. Steward:

As I am unable to accept your kind invitation to be present on the occasion of the Twentieth Jubilee Convention of the National Federation of Federal Employees, I am taking this method of sending greetings and a message.
Reading your letter of July 14, 1937, I was especially interested in the timeliness of your remark that the manner in which the activities of your organization have been carried on during the past two decades “has been in complete consonance with the best traditions of public employee relationships.” Organizations of Government employees have a logical place in Government affairs.

The desire of Government employees for fair and adequate pay, reasonable hours of work, safe and suitable working conditions, development of opportunities for advancement, facilities for fair and impartial consideration and review of grievances, and other objectives of a proper employee relations policy, is basically no different from that of employees in private industry. Organization on their part to present their views on such matters is both natural and logical, but meticulous attention should be paid to the special relationships and obligations of public servants to the public itself and to the Government.

All Government employees should realize that the process of collective bargaining, as usually understood, cannot be transplanted into the public service. It has its distinct and insurmountable limitations when applied to public personnel management. The very nature and purposes of Government make it impossible for administrative officials to represent fully or to bind the employer in mutual discussions with Government employee organizations. The employer is the whole people, who speak by means of laws enacted by their representatives in Congress. Accordingly, administrative officials and employees alike are governed and guided, and in many instances restricted, by laws which establish policies, procedures, or rules in personnel matters.

Particularly, I want to emphasize my conviction that militant tactics have no place in the functions of any organization of Government employees. Upon employees in the Federal service rests the obligation to serve the whole people, whose interests and welfare require orderliness and continuity in the conduct of Government activities. This obligation is paramount. Since their own services have to do with the functioning of the Government, a strike of public employees manifests nothing less than an intent on their part to prevent or obstruct the operations of Government until their demands are satisfied. Such action, looking toward the paralysis of Government by those who have sworn to support it, is unthinkable and intolerable. It is, therefore, with a feeling of gratification that I have noted in the constitution of the National Federation of Federal Employees the provision that “under no circumstances shall this Federation engage in or support strikes against the United States Government.”

I congratulate the National Federation of Federal Employees the twentieth anniversary of its founding and trust that the convention will, in every way, be successful.

Very sincerely yours,
[FDR]

For once, I find myself nodding in agreement with FDR, especially when I got to the text I’ve highlighted in boldface. We should have listened when he warned us about public sector unions. It’s time to fix this mistake and outlaw them.

More reading: Labor Union Report