Tag Archive for: Communism

CHAPTER 3: Birdman and the Reality Revolution—Space Is No Longer the Final Frontier—Reality Is

Globalism is a replacement ideology that seeks to reorder the world into one singular, planetary Unistate, ruled by the globalist elite themselves. The globalist war on nation-states cannot succeed without collapsing the United States of America. The long-term strategic attack plan moves America incrementally from constitutional republic to socialism to globalism to feudalism. The tactical attack plan uses psychological, informational, asymmetric warfare to destabilize Americans and drive society out of objective reality into the madness of subjective reality. The primary target of the globalist predators is America’s children. 


The ability to distinguish between fact and fantasy is an essential survival skill. If a man believes he can fly and jumps off a twenty-story ledge, he falls to his death because gravity is a fact, an objective truth. Birdman’s fantasy, a subjective reality, cannot compete with the objective reality of gravity.

Let’s break down the process of thinking and doing. Thinking is a private matter and human beings are free to think their thoughts at any time in any place. Birdman is free to think he can fly, without consequence to himself or others. It is the moment he steps off the ledge that his subjective reality collides with objective reality.

Adults and children are evaluated differently in society. The fantasies of children are an accepted part of the growth process. In a sane society, adults who are out of touch with reality are deemed insane. In our example, Birdman would be considered insane.

Civil society and the laws that govern it are based on the acceptance of objective reality by its citizens. What would happen if there was a movement that deliberately rejected the teaching of objective reality and taught subjective reality instead? What would be the purpose of driving a society insane?

Remember, the ability to distinguish between fact and fantasy is a survival skill, because thought precedes action. Birdman thought he could fly and jumped to his death. Critical thinking is the objective analysis of facts in order to form a judgment, and is the foundation of rational thought.

Feelings, on the other hand, are the foundation of beliefs. Birdman’s feeling that he is a bird that can fly cannot compete with the fact that he is a human being who cannot. Critical thinking, based on facts, is necessary in an adult society.

An insistence upon objective reality is what made America great, powerful, and undefeatable in World War II. At the end of the war, America’s enemies did not go quietly into the night. They reconstituted themselves to fight another day, in another way.

America’s enemies simply put down their guns, picked up their books, and concentrated on the future. They studied the human mind and decided to exploit the existence of the unconscious to defeat America psychologically. The strategic goal was to infantilize Americans. Children’s psychological growth would be paralyzed with educational indoctrination that interrupts their developing critical-thinking skills. Adults would be pressured out of the adult world of objective reality and regressed back into the childish world of feelings.

Vladimir Lenin infamously said, “Give me four years to teach the children and the seed I have sown will never be uprooted.”

The leftists have taken a page out of Lenin’s communist playbook and indoctrinated two generations of Americans toward collectivism using public/private education, along with mainstream media including television programming and movies. The radical leftist/Marxist War on America is a sinister effort to shatter objective reality and destroy critical-thinking skills. When critical thinking is destroyed and a society is reduced to childish emotional thinking, that society is easily exploited.

In order to stop the radical leftists/Marxists, we need a Reality Revolution. This Revolution would restore objective reality by dismantling the infrastructure of subjective reality that has been established since the end of World War II.

In objective reality, the striving to become an adult, with all its attendant responsibilities, is rewarded with the freedom of adulthood. Children are not free in any society—they are dependent upon their parents/caretakers or the government. The choice between the collectivism offered by socialism/communism, and the individualism offered by the constitutional republic envisioned by our Founding Fathers, is the choice between childhood dependence and adult independence. It is the difference between servitude and freedom.

What young people in America need to understand is that the promise of socialism is never the reality of socialism. Cradle-to-grave government care exacts an exorbitant price. When you accept the powerless position of childhood for the rest of your life, the government happily appropriates your freedom and liberty. In socialism/communism you become a permanent ward of the state.

Americans who proudly wear Che Guevara T-shirts display their ignorance. Real people living in actual communist countries risk their lives escaping TO the real freedom of America. No one is trying to escape FROM Miami to Havana. The romanticized version of socialism/communism propagandizing American students is subjective reality.

These young people need to consider the reality of collectivism, but they must be in objective reality in order to do so. Otherwise, like Birdman, they will think they can fly. The death of Birdman is the metaphorical death of freedom.

©2024. Linda Goudsmit. All rights reserved.

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The Role of Faith in Cuba’s Fight for Freedom

By the end of September 2021, the events of July 11 were a burning memory for Cubans. That July, which Cubans refer to as 11J, activists linked to a Facebook group called Archipiélago had requested authorization through letters to several provincial governments to hold a demonstration. They wanted to condemn violence and demand the release of political prisoners, respect for the rights of Cubans, and the resolution of political differences through democratic and peaceful means.

Archipiélago was led by a board of coordinators that presented itself as politically diverse. In reality, the majority of its members tended towards leftism, and the figure who enjoyed the greatest national and international media access was the playwright Yunior García.

Although García called for the first demonstration to be November 20, on October 7 the Ministry of the Revolutionary Armed Forces announced a series of military exercises from November 18 to 20, in what they called a National Defense Day. Archipiélago determined, then, to move the demonstration to the 15th, the day on which the island would open its borders to international tourism.

On November 15 (which became known as 15N), some 131 people were prevented from leaving their homes that day in Cuba, according to the complaints center of the Foundation for Pan American Democracy. Yunior García was one of them. He also experienced internet outages. In the next few hours, during and after the 15th, nothing was heard from him. The Archipiélago activists released a statement demanding information from the regime, and others blamed the state, thinking the worst.

The next day, García landed in Spain, and unraveled some mysteries during a large press conference. He said that days ago, unbeknownst to his colleagues and followers whom he had called to take to the streets, he had arranged a visa with the Spanish embassy, which was at that time controlled by a socialist PSOE (Partido Socialista Obrero Español, the socialist and ruling party in Spain) government. García said that Cuba was not governed by a socialist tyranny, but by a conservative one. And he said that the financial pressure against the dictatorship — which he called “blockade” — had to be eliminated.

The dissident Guillermo “Coco” Fariñas described García’s escape as cowardly and unethical; He acknowledged that although it is understandable to be afraid, “when he assumes leadership, one has to go ahead.” And he considered the call for 15N as a way to counteract the still vibrant spirit of 11J, “an operation of discouragement aimed at the effervescence that exists within the Cuban youth that was designed by people who want a soft landing, a guilty cohabitation with the military dictatorship in the exercise of power.”

Despite the failure of the 15N call and the disappointments derived from his leadership, several Cubans sincerely put their hopes and efforts in that demonstration as a way to channel their rejection of the Marxist regime. Several Christians were among them.

That day, in the peripheral Havana municipality of El Cotorro, Pastor Carlos Sebastián Hernández Armas, historian of the Western Baptist Convention, also expressed his desire for change in totalitarian Cuba, joining the call of 15N. That day he posted a selfie on his Facebook. He wore the characteristic elements of the call: a flower and a white sweater. A fingerprint was stamped on the sweater, with an empty space in the center in the shape of a cross.

The photo was accompanied by this verse in 2 Samuel 22:2-4: “The Lord is my rock and my strength, and my deliverer; My God, my strength, I will trust in him; my shield, and the stronghold of my salvation, my high refuge; my savior; You freed me from violence. I will call on the Lord, who is worthy of praise, and I will be saved from my enemies.” It is not just any verse, but one that speaks of resistance, confrontation, of at least two opposing visions that strain the social rope.

In the city of Cárdenas, Matanzas, Reniel Rodríguez or “Lunático,” the name with which he baptized his X profile and his YouTube channel (“Lunatico Debates”), was 15 years old on 15N. That day he called from a corner, through a live broadcast, for the city’s inhabitants to take to the streets. He was dressed in white, as the Archipiélago call had requested, and with a flower in his hand.

He walked around town for a while. While he was walking, he received a call. It was a local Communist Party official, who ordered him to delete the video of the call and return to his house. Frightened, Reniel obeyed. Forty-eight hours later, things got worse. Several police officers were stationed in front of the secondary school where Reniel studied. They asked about him. A teacher took him from school to the military, and he was taken to a Comprehensive Training School (EFI) of the Ministry of the Interior, a penitentiary center for minors.

In just 24 hours, the teenager’s case went viral on the social networks of Cubans inside and outside the island. Several Christians raised their voices about him.

On November 18, 2021 at 11 p.m., Iván Daniel Calás called through his social media account on X to pray for Reniel, a “15-year-old boy who is in prison.” Calás said that everyone was welcome, and along with the #FreeLunatico hashtag he referred to the biblical verse in Hebrews 13: 3: “Remember the prisoners, as if you were prisoners together with them.”

Reniel and Calás had met years before. On Twitter, they were public opponents on issues such as abortion, of which the former was a defender. Precisely that topic brought them together shortly before the arrest, when Reniel had accepted, after months of scientific and philosophical arguments, the continuity and value of human life from the moment of conception.

On 15N, in the center of the capital, a human rights activist and member of the apostolic movement was trying to attend the call. Near the Parque del Quijote, in the populous neighborhood of El Vedado, Yoantone Marrero, better known as Tony Máx, was able to shout “Long live freedom! Long live democracy! Long live free Cuba!” before agents of the National Revolutionary Police arrested him.

The overwhelming repression of the 15th did not go unnoticed in the eyes of Cuban evangelical leaders. Bárbaro Abel Marrero, an academic and Baptist pastor whose analyses of the introduction of gender ideology by totalitarianism have garnered repercussion in recent years, dedicated a text titled “The ignominy visited Santa Clara,” about the harassment of Cubans and relatives of prisoners who demonstrated for political changes, the infamous acts of repudiation.

Marrero, rector of the Baptist Theological Seminary of Havana, began his account by stating his connection with Santa Clara, his hometown, the city of the 19th century patriot Marta Abreu. “Perhaps that is why it affected me so much to be a virtual witness of the disgusting events that stained its streets this November 15,” he confessed.

“I intercede for the unfortunate people who have degraded themselves to such vileness (to repress pacific protesters), so that they can sincerely repent, for their own good,” he expressed. “Finally, I cry out for the families who have been lacerated by abject arrows of hatred, that their wounds be healed and that their cause be vindicated; that they may not be overcome by evil, as the apostle Paul teaches, but that they may overcome evil with good. Father, have mercy on Cuba.”

AUTHOR

Yoe Suarez

RELATED ARTICLE: Cuban Christians and the Fight for Freedom of Expression

EDITORS NOTE: This Washington Stand column is republished with permission. All rights reserved. ©2024 Family Research Council.


The Washington Stand is Family Research Council’s outlet for news and commentary from a biblical worldview. The Washington Stand is based in Washington, D.C. and is published by FRC, whose mission is to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy and the culture from a biblical worldview. We invite you to stand with us by partnering with FRC.

Fetterman: I Didn’t Leave the Left, It Left Me

“I don’t feel like I’ve left the label; it’s just more that it’s left me.”

An interesting line with a lot of history to it from Sen. Jon Fetterman on dumping the “progressive” label he used to use.

“I don’t feel like I’ve left the label; it’s just more that it’s left me.”

President Reagan would often quip, “I didn’t leave the Democratic party, the Democratic Party left me.” Similar lines have been used by everyone from Bill Maher, “It’s not me who’s changed, it is the left” to Elon Musk.

It’s hard to say exactly what’s going on with Fetterman after his medical issues, but a dividing line seems to have been the Left’s support for Hamas, but he’s also embraced a species of economic populism, fighting against land sales to China, and Japan’s takeover of U.S. Steel.

While Fetterman had never been a foreign policy guy, he did explicitly break with the far left on Israel during his campaign.

“I would also respectfully say that I’m not really a progressive in that sense,” he added. “Our campaign is based on core Democratic values and principles, and always has been, and there is no daylight between myself and these kinds of unwavering commitments to Israel’s security.”

Still, Fetterman said he was “eager to affirm” his positions on the record, lest there be any uncertainty among supporters of Israel who have similar questions. “I want to go out of my way to make sure that it’s absolutely clear,” he told JI, “that the views that I hold in no way go along the lines of some of the more fringe or extreme wings of our party.”

The Left did not take that seriously and assumed he was just pandering. Now they’re finding out that he really meant it.

So this did not come out of nowhere. And it’s not just about Israel.

He has also publicly encouraged Democrats in recent days to engage in border negotiations with Republicans, talks that have outraged progressives who object to efforts to clamp down on migration through the United States border with Mexico.

“I don’t think it’s unreasonable to have a secured border,” Mr. Fetterman said in the interview, conducted over Zoom. “I would never put Dreamers in harm’s way, or support any kind of cruelty or mass expulsion of hundreds of thousands of people. But it’s a reasonable conversation to talk about the border.”

Now this may be a canny rebranding.

A moderate Democrat who emphasizes economic populism, border security and steers clear of crazier leftist stuff, has much better odds of holding on to a Pennsylvania Senate seat.

Fetterman would never have taken office if Republicans hadn’t run a Turkish Muslim leftist trainwreck like Mehmet Oz who appealed to no one except Oprah viewers (and they mostly vote Democrat anyway). Next time, Republicans may actually find a candidate that people might actually vote for. But next time around is a long time away and Fetterman doesn’t need to be picking fights with the Left.

The short version seems to be that he may be a leftist, but he’s an old-school leftist who actually doesn’t much like the Left.

The media castigates him for associating with Bernie Sanders, but Bernie was actually an old-school leftist who used to be against identity politics, culture wars and open borders. Under pressure, he jettisoned all of his views and became a generic woke. (At which point most people lost interest in him. Eventually so did the Left.)

Fetterman has pushed back against the pressure. Unlike Bernie, he refuses to be intimidated by people screaming at him.

Despite the headline, he hasn’t left the Left, but he’s not interested in the progressive label which tends to signify upper class wokeness.

The Pennsylvania senator said he still aligns with many progressive goals, including a $15 minimum wage, universal health care, legalizing marijuana and abolishing the Senate filibuster.

But he said he no longer relates to the overarching label of “progressive” — especially as the left has become more interested in demanding what he described as “purity tests.”

“It’s just a place where I’m not,” he said. “I don’t feel like I’ve left the label; it’s just more that it’s left me.

“I’m not critical if someone is a progressive,” he added. “I believe different things.”

Fetterman is currently for fracking, and also for lots of social welfare. That is old-school leftism. It’s also fairly popular.

There’s a whole lot more support for social welfare than there is for culture wars, drag queens and Islamic terrorism. Not to mention radical environmentalism.

The old progressives used to argue (not even all that long ago) that they should run on a straight class warfare platform while shedding all the other garbage. This used to be the main argument for a Bernie Sanders campaign. Except that garbage is hard to shed. Just ask Bernie.

Fetterman is shedding a lot of the garbage. This doesn’t make him an ex-leftist or a friend to conservatives, but it makes him something worse: a serious threat to the Left as it currently is.

AUTHOR

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EDITORS NOTE: This Jihad Watch column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

China on the Verge of Collapse?

Marxism is a material philosophy that denies the existence of anything but the physically substantial. Thus, communism’s hatred of religion, which proposes that there is an unseen world and that life beyond the grave should concern mortal men and women.

Additionally, Marxism sees itself as a comprehensive, as an anti-theistic religion demanding not only entire allegiance but unquestioning acceptance of its dogmas.

So, it is natural that the world’s largest communist state, China, should oppress religious believers of all faiths and deny the Chinese people even a hint of self-government. In the absence of religion and civic self-determination, China’s leaders have promised their subjects (an appropriate characterization of those living under the Maoist thumb) growing economic prosperity in place of religious and political liberty.

Not only does Marxism reduce man to a strictly economic creature for whom beauty and creativity must comport with strict, state-approved standards.

In recent decades, China has become economically stronger and stronger. Its standing among the family of nations has grown exponentially as its business and military sectors, integrated closely with one another, have led to skyscraper-laden cities and potency in the world’s economic forums.

China is expanding its global influence through loaning money to developing nations for infrastructure (the “Belt and Road Initiative,” or BRI) and membership in the “BRICS” bloc. Composed of Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa (and, recently, six new smaller nations), BRICS members seek to thumb their nose at developed and republican-oriented nations. Aggravated by calls that they observe respect for human rights and, in some cases, stop their military adventurism, the BRICS countries see themselves as an alternative to the industrialized powers of Europe, North America, Japan and Australia.

But economies can change rapidly. No one anticipated the COVID down-turn of 2020 and its effects on a booming U.S. private sector. And it looks like the uber-Maoist Xi Jinping has been caught rather by surprise by the slump that is hitting Red China.

Characterized by financial journalist Milton Ezrati as “always something of a Mafia-like enterprise,” the BRI would invite poorer countries to borrow money from China in return for construction of dams, roads, rail lines, and so forth. The problem for China is that these poor countries remain poor — and cannot repay their loans. Ezrati notes that “economists at the World Bank estimate that now some 60 percent of all BRI loans involve countries in financial distress.”

Then there’s China’s relentless assault on U.S. firms. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo, on her recent trip to Beijing, told her hosts that China’s “raids on (American) firms” with office in China and its vast intellectual property theft enterprise. Raimondo also noted that along with “unexplained fines and unpredictable official behavior,” China is on the verge of becoming anathema for U.S. companies. “U.S. business needs to see some action taken to address these issues,” Raimondo said. “Otherwise, they will deem it as just too risky and … uninvestable.”

The federal government is also taking action against China’s theft of critical American technologies and even such things as copyrighted agricultural products. The FBI “has designated Chinese espionage as its ‘top counterintelligence priority,’ considering it a substantial threat to the nation’s core economic assets and technological innovations.” China has “targeted a broad range of sectors, including government, businesses, academic institutions, researchers, and even the general public.”

FBI Director Christopher Wray reports that “China’s hacking program is more extensive than the combined efforts of all other nations, making it a significant challenge for U.S. cybersecurity.” The Biden White House restricting American investment in “Chinese military–connected firms operating within certain critical technology sectors — semiconductors, quantum computing, and artificial intelligence.” But there’s much more to do.

The notorious and now thankfully defunct “one-child” policy also cost China tens of millions of men and women who would now be in the workforce. The grotesque immorality of this policy is now compounded by its economic impact: “With China’s population aging rapidly, there are fewer working-age people to support retirees,” writes my friend Jeanne Mancini. “The one-child policy, which lasted for more than three decades before ending in 2016, worsened the situation and threatens long-term economic prospects.”

Put altogether, China’s prospects for economic power are dimming significantly. “Consumer prices are falling, a real estate crisis is deepening ,and exports are in a slump. Unemployment among youth has gotten so bad the government has stopped publishing the data,” writes journalist Lauren He.

So, China’s promised prosperity is shriveling, and its oppression of Christians, Muslims, and others is increasing. Long a land of frequent revolutions, it’s not unrealistic to wonder what the next 10 years bode for the Middle Kingdom.

AUTHOR

Rob Schwarzwalder

Rob Schwarzwalder is Senior Lecturer in Regent University’s Honors College.

EDITORS NOTE: This Washington Stand column is republished with permission. All rights reserved. ©2023 Family Research Council.


The Washington Stand is Family Research Council’s outlet for news and commentary from a biblical worldview. The Washington Stand is based in Washington, D.C. and is published by FRC, whose mission is to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy and the culture from a biblical worldview. We invite you to stand with us by partnering with FRC.

America’s International Influence Wanes as Communist Nations Craft Partnerships

Economic weakness and radical policies are pushing nations away from the U.S. and into the arms of China and Russia, a well-known business school head stated Friday.

“The U.S. is clearly losing our authority on the world stage,” former Congressman Dave Brat said on August 25’s “Washington Watch with Tony Perkins.” Brat is dean of the Liberty University School of Business.

He noted that BRICS, a bloc of nations that already included China, Brazil, Russia, India, and South Africa, announced Thursday the group was adding Saudi Arabia, Iran, Ethiopia, Egypt, Argentina, and the United Arab Emirates as members in a concerted effort to overturn what has been a world order dominated by U.S. interests since the mid-20th century.

Russia pushed for the bloc’s formation in 2009. More recently, China has been the prime driver behind the group and its growth.

“This membership expansion is historic,” Chinese President Xi Jinping said in a Reuters report. “It shows the determination of BRICS countries for unity and cooperation with the broader developing countries.”

This shift in alliances is a reaction against the overreach of the United States, Brat told FRC’s guest host Jody Hice. “We’ve gone too far,” Brat continued, “We’re $50 trillion in debt.” He noted that the rest of the world is well aware of the United States’ economic woes, including higher interest rates and the likelihood the nation will never be able to pay off its debt. Brat, who served as the U.S. representative for Virginia’s 7th congressional district from 2014 to 2019, said many nations are holding American dollars which are losing value.

Referencing the Bretton Woods Agreement, an economic and monetary order established in 1944 after the United States victory in World War II, Brat explained the U.S. looked to rights enshrined in the U.S. Constitution and Declaration of Independence in building a world order aimed at blunting the spread of communism.

“We protected the world as long as they would help us fight against the Soviet Union back then,” he continued. “The world has changed significantly now. China is our biggest threat, and we are just ill-equipped,” Brat added.

Adding insult to injury, Hice noted the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) announced an LGBTQ policy earlier this month. According to an agency press release, the first-ever policy “guides USAID’s commitment to advancing LGBTQI+ Inclusive Development and the human rights of LGBTQI+ people as part of a coordinated, whole-of-U.S. government effort with our partners on the ground.”

“So it’s not just the horrendous shape of our economy, but the United States keeps pushing this wokeness on other countries,” Hice continued. “These other countries don’t want our woke ideology, and we’re really pushing away countries that otherwise ought to be our allies.”

Citing “woke stuff” in the military, growing national debt, the nation’s “open” southern border, and the Federal Reserve’s ruinous policies, Brat said the U.S. is no longer in the world’s driver’s seat.

While BRICS members do not have much in common on the surface, Steve Tsang, director of London’s Soas China Institute, a center focused on research and teaching on China, said these nations share a common desire — they do not want to live in a “Western-dominated world.”

“What the Chinese are offering is an alternative world order for which autocrats can feel safe and secure in their own countries,” Tsang said in a BBC report.

Brat insisted the U.S. must take this expanding realignment seriously, suggesting the bloc of nations is planning to develop a common currency that will be backed by gold and that threatens to replace the U.S. dollar as the basis of international trade.

“The objective, irreversible process of de-dollarization of our economic ties, is gaining momentum,” Russian President Vladimir Putin told the BRICS summit Tuesday.

“It is a real threat,” Brat warned. “It’s a signal to the U.S. to get our act together.”

Yet the economist is not optimistic there will be any changes in the near future: “I don’t have much confidence that we are going to get our act together. This is the natural consequence of our [nation’s] dereliction of its fiscal duties over the decades.”

AUTHOR

K.D. Hastings

K.D. Hastings and his family live in the beautiful hills of Middle Tennessee. He has been engaged in the evangelical world as a communicator since 1994.

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EDITORS NOTE: This Washington Stand column is republished with permission. All rights reserved. ©2023 Family Research Council.


The Washington Stand is Family Research Council’s outlet for news and commentary from a biblical worldview. The Washington Stand is based in Washington, D.C. and is published by FRC, whose mission is to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy and the culture from a biblical worldview. We invite you to stand with us by partnering with FRC.

Merrick Garland Is Slowly Defining A New Criminal Class, And Soon You’ll Be Part Of It

What do Kyle Rittenhouse, Donald Trump, Nick Sandmann, Mark Houck, Sarah Comrie (the so-called “Bike Karen”) and Daniel Penny all have in common?

All of them are victims of the “two-tiered justice system” and the leftist media court of public opinion. Conservatives often protest this double standard, understandably since none of these people committed any crime. Attorney General Merrick Garland’s Justice Department has effectively become a symbol for this kind of persecution in tandem with its local lackeys, criminal foot soldiers and the corporate press.

Crying about double standards or “two-tiered justice,” however, misses the point.  There is no “double standard” — only a hierarchy without you in it. Their persecution of everyone from political opponents to everyday people is designed to remind you that they are the elite and you exist at their pleasure.

To enforce this new hierarchy, Garland and his allies have created a new category of criminal straight out of the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917: the “political criminal.”

Soviet dissident Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn wrote in Gulag Archipelago (pg. 505 if you’re interested) that in the early days of the USSR, thieves and murderers were often treated with kid gloves. They could be rehabilitated, the party line went, and they were often allowed to commit crime if they targeted the right people.

Not so for anyone considered a “political criminal,” either directly or by association. Those people eventually ended up in the GULAG. Now this might seem unsurprising, until you realize that the crime of opposing the state could be something as simple as having more money than your neighbor, belonging to the wrong ethnic group, being Christian or simply existing.

Such people were referred to as “terrorists.” Sound familiar when Joe Biden and the media constantly harping about “white supremacist, ultra-MAGA terrorism?” That label should terrify you.

We’ve seen how we deal with terrorism abroad. We lock them up, don’t give them any due process, or just kill them. That is what Biden and co. are implying they want for you, the political terrorist.

In the leftist mind, conservatives who oppose them are peons. Leftists and their minions are the elite (or at least above you in the social hierarchy) and can do whatever they want without consequences. As long as they serve a purpose, the party has their backs no matter how evil or depraved they are.

In practice, this relationship means that Kyle Rittenhouse was supposed to let his attackers bash his head in. They supported our corrupt system and held all the right views. Kyle Rittenhouse, regardless of his political views, was wrong for opposing them, making him an enemy of the state.

Donald Trump was supposed to roll over and surrender the presidency without a fight. His crime was opposing the Swamp. Same with Daniel Penny. Jordan Neely was part of the left’s strategy to foment chaos. He had every right to be a criminal. Penny had no right to stop his activities as far as Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg is concerned.

Don’t want your kids to be sexualized in schools and raped down the road? That makes you a terrorist too. You don’t even have the right to defend your own children.

As for Sarah Cowrie, even if she paid for that bike, as far as the left is concerned, she had no right to it because in the left’s twisted world, white people are always wrong – the facts be damned. And if things had gotten violent, you bet the media would have justified it all the way or covered it up.

And the list goes on, and on, and on.

Meanwhile, violent criminals get a pass every time. They are victims of society, liberals say. They can be rehabilitated if only we give a little more money to the system – usually money coming from the political enemies they persecute.

But the reality is that the criminals are coddled not because leftists love them but because they are useful. The Soviets even had a term for this – “social allies.” And for the left, every type of anti-social, child-grooming, murderous criminal is indeed an ally to knocking down the system that allows free people to flourish.

And one more thing: if leftists are trying to lock conservatives up for “terrorism” now, it won’t be long before they start trying to kill you.

AUTHOR

MICHELE GAMA SOSA

Michele Gama Sosa is an opinion editor for the Daily Caller and a historian by training.

The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of the Daily Caller.

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EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Caller column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

Exiled Cuban Journalist: ‘Socialism Is Institutionalized Envy’

Approximately 36% of young Americans, ages 18 to 22, hold a positive view of socialism. However, for exiled Cuban journalist Yoe Suárez, this positive view of socialism is not based on reality. On a recent episode of the Outstanding podcast hosted by Joseph Backholm, Suárez and Washington Stand Editor-in-Chief Jared Bridges discuss their firsthand experiences with socialism and its wide-ranging consequences.

“The first time I ate a tangerine in years was here in [the] USA,” Suárez said. “It’s amazing because Cuba is a tropical island, you know? It should have fruits there. That’s an image that can maybe portray what’s happening in Cuba.” Suárez went on to discuss the various crises Cubans endure, including blackouts, inaccessible medicine, and a lack of necessities like food and milk for families. When Backholm asked Suárez what the government’s objective was, he replied, “The principal goal is political control. And then they have to build a narrative of goodness behind that.”

Bridges shared his experience living under a socialist government in Minsk, Belarus. “At the time, the things I ran into was just seeing how that system for that long a time oppressed people,” he said. He discussed his inability to find prescribed medicine after going to seven different pharmacies. “To put it in perspective today, here in America, I’ll go to the drug store and get upset if I have to wait 15 minutes.” Bridges further noted that his experience shed light on how, rather than everyone being equal in their belongings and opportunities under socialism, people are stripped of basic needs including medicine. “What became evident to me was that something is not what it says it is,” Bridges stated.

Backholm wondered how to change the phenomenon happening “here in the United States where you have a growing number of young people who actually seem enthusiastic about socialism,” with Bridges adding how this enthusiasm takes place amongst Christians as well.

“The saddest thing is that socialism takes a lot from envy,” Suárez said. People want what they can’t have, and, for Suárez, socialism feeds the flame of envy toward those who have more. “Socialism is institutionalized envy. It’s that. Socialism is just that.” He went on to observe that the fundamental issue is when too much power is centralized in one place. Sharing is good, but it must come from a place of voluntary charity. As Suárez stated, “If it’s voluntary, it’s charity. And charity is good.” But as Backholm added, “Compelled generosity is not generosity, it is theft. It is totalitarian. It is robbery.”

Backholm further pointed out how our sinful nature, whether living under capitalism or socialism, leads to the exploitation of others and often manifests into greed. “If our hearts are unregulated, we will take advantage of other people to our own benefit,” Backholm stated. “What a biblical worldview argues for is a decentralization of power. … The free marketplace, by nature, decentralizes power.” In response, Bridges reflected on how a free market society also gives us the ability to speak out.

When the discussion turned to equality, it was noted that the desire for ultimate equality does not have an end because nothing will ever be enough to satisfy. Suárez, for instance, was kicked out of his home country for speaking out against socialism. As Bridges pointed out, this socialist view of equality does not lead to actual equality, but rather a totalitarian sense of political control where the government tells you what you can and cannot do with your goods, needs, and opinions.

For Backholm, Suárez, and Bridges, the ability to distinguish between voluntary charity and compelled generosity is the difference between socialism and capitalism. Neither is without flaw, but as Suárez stated, “The solution to a headache is not cancer.”

AUTHOR

Sarah Holliday

EDITORS NOTE: This Washington Stand column is republished with permission. All rights reserved. ©2023 Family Research Council.


The Washington Stand is Family Research Council’s outlet for news and commentary from a biblical worldview. The Washington Stand is based in Washington, D.C. and is published by FRC, whose mission is to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy and the culture from a biblical worldview. We invite you to stand with us by partnering with FRC.

The GOP Is Clueless To The Dems’ Sinister Immigration Agenda — And It Has Nothing To Do With Elections

The GOP has been very good at diagnosing the problems we will face from the illegal migrant invasion following the end of Title 42. Americans will pay more taxes while seeing cartel activity, gang violence, and other crime skyrocket. Housing and healthcare will become scarcer and more expensive, and the labor market will worsen as a larger labor supply suppresses American wages.

Republicans have mostly attacked the Democrats’ plan to create a “permanent majority” or accused them of enabling crime. Ultimately, this short-sighted approach focuses on the short-term electoral game. As usual, the Democrats and their handlers hide their true intentions, and the GOP is none the wiser.

The final Democrat goal is to turn America into a communist state in which Washington and its mega-corporate partners control every aspect of life. But Americans increasingly realize they are better off controlling their own affairs. So what is Uncle Sam to do?

Enter a pair of 60s radicals from Columbia University. Professors Richard Cloward and Frances Piven taught at the Ivy League university during Lyndon Johnson’s War on Poverty and Great Society. In 1966, they argued that Johnson’s welfare program was not going far enough because most welfare was the purview of state and local authorities. In order to get everyone on the federal teat, a crisis had to be created to give the feds the excuse to step in. Their proposal was to have massive numbers of poor people overwhelm local and state governments that they would beg Uncle Sam for help.

This general idea is the long-term strategy behind mass immigration.

If the Democrats cannot get Americans to accept a neo-communist, technocratic, oligarchic state run by billionaires and their political marionettes, they will import those who will. And the masses of impoverished foreigners, who are already accustomed to socialism and heavy-handed government, are the perfect trojan horse.

AOC may be dumb, but the people behind her aren’t. They want to overwhelm their own cities – and then everywhere else. They know that if NYC and Chicago can’t handle migrants, then the rural counties these cities are shipping migrants to definitely won’t – let alone the 750 million people who want to come here. The only entity left to pick up the tab is the federal government (in practice, this means you), which will use demographic chaos, poverty, and declining standards of living as a pretext to “save” the day. Coincidentally, Eric Adams has called for just that.

So what do you do when people can’t afford to live as a result of both low wages and high taxes to pay for all these illegals (among other things)? Enact universal basic income, preferably with a trackable CBDC that will control what you can buy, and when and whether you can buy it at all. Can’t afford healthcare because the system is strained and clogged up? Roll out Medicare for all, which of course gets to prioritize certain patients over others according to federal whims. No doubt diversity and inclusion will be criteria. Local and state police can’t handle the out of control crime anymore as a result of illegal immigration and soft-on-crime DAs? Create a national police force.

COVID-19 was a good try from the feds. They got tons of people to wear masks, take experimental shots, and hate their neighbors, but it didn’t result in the economic collapse and massive run to the welfare rolls that they had hoped for. So now, they’ve hit upon an all-too-commonly seen plan in history: when your own people hate you, bring in dependent outsiders.

Oh, and one more thing. When the millions of military-aged male migrants don’t get what they want from the Dems (who basically promised them the world), the Dems will blame you (Americans) and turn their newly imported constituency against you to save themselves.

And you won’t be able to defend yourself. All that violence that is happening thanks to cartels, sex/drug trafficking, and gang violence – all the product of letting in massive numbers of military-aged males? That’s your fault too, which means: get ready to surrender your guns. Uncle Sam doesn’t like competition.

AUTHOR

MICHELE GAMA SOSA

Michele Gama Sosa is an opinion editor for the Daily Caller and a historian by training.

The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of the Daily Caller.

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EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Caller column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

Dog Meat, Human Meat, and Other Wonders of Socialist Cuban Hunger

I can imagine the face of the person who discovered that bag full of dog heads in San Antonio de los Baños, Cuba. Around those days in 2012, the tumultuous popular festivities of Humoranga had ended, and the local palate still remembered the fabulous skewers that, mysteriously, were being sold at pocket prices in the always hungry Cuban scene.

I can imagine people hearing about the sack. Tying up loose ends can be nauseating.

The possible sale of dog meat keeps reminding me of Donald Trump, who pointed out that people stand up for freedom because they want to walk their dog and not eat it. Sure, maybe not your dog, but the neighborhood dog, who passes a stone’s throw away and doesn’t wear a collar or answer to any name. People are hungry.

That is why a well-known Cuban writer told me that before going cat-hunting in his college years, he would swish some rum, as if to dilute his consciousness. Yes, in Cuba people have also eaten cats. The demand for this and any meat had a peak in the 1990s, the hardest crisis on the island, when this writer was studying to become an engineer, and the nights of hunger did not allow him to sleep.

In that fateful decade, rabbit meat buyers asked for the animal with its head, to make sure they weren’t selling cats. From that period comes an extensive survival recipe. From pizzas with condoms instead of cheese, to steaks with grapefruit peel and mop bedspreads.

Socialism has failed so much and in so many ways that, as Thomas Sowell said, only an intellectual would be unable to see it. In 2007, experts from the University of Loyola and the Cuban university in Cienfuegos studied the impacts of the so-called Special Period and concluded that it had done good for the health of Cubans. Yes, as it reads.

Due to the lack of food and fuel, which forced thousands of Cubans to pedal bicycles to get around, obesity decreased. And, as a consequence, the number of deaths were attributed to diabetes, coronary diseases, and cardiac arrests. At the same time, the famine minimized the amount of calories in the diet. Wow, after zombifying millions of souls, you have Big Brother to thank.

The experts can be, it is known, new tyrants of the postmodern state, and with Cuba, they have tried to rewrite its history to accommodate their delusions. The academics behind the study conveniently ignored the rise in diseases such as polyneuritis or depression during the 1990s.

What would they say about an act of cannibalism if it occurs in socialist Cuba? Would they change the moral compass to justify it? At the end of 2022, it emerged that a hospital employee “was extracting organs and body fat from the deceased to crush them and sell them as mincemeat.” The rumor spread on social networks, and through an official statement the Provincial Health Directorate of Santiago de Cuba confirmed it: the National Revolutionary Police was investigating a possible case of organ trafficking from deceased persons at the Ambrosio Grillo Portuondo Clinical Surgical Hospital.

“Certainly, there are two workers from the reference hospital who work as eviscerators and occupational therapy, arrested on December 9, 2022 for an alleged criminal act, having seized two hearts of possible human origin,” explained the state center. Will revolutionary progress lead to cannibalism?

The United States is one of the main importers of food to the island. In 2021, Castroism disbursed more than $124 million in frozen chicken quarters, a substantial increase compared to 2020, when it paid just over $67 million for the same product.

Yes, imperialism wants the hardened people to die of hunger, the people that (the regime believes) turns on the gossip in the blackout, thinking that at least the right wing does not rule in Cuba, the island that before 1959 produced meat and exported flowers south of the United States. Yes. When the system changes, how things change.

The revolutionaries of 1959 repeated that changes were good, that change was equal to progress, that they could only advance even as nobody knew for sure where it was going. But, as we have seen, progressivism does not mean progress. Having your feet on the ground, a minute, is enough to know.

Luis O. lives in Camaguey, inherited a shotgun, and after a cumbersome process he obtained a license to hunt. It is 2023, but Luis goes out to kill ducks, quails, and whatever he finds in front of the canyon to feed his brother, his mother, his wife, and their two children, as if the city of Camaguey was still Santa María del Puerto del Príncipe. While socialism imposes stores in capitalist currency (euro, dollar, everything) on an impoverished population, the people of Camaguey saw the stores in Cuban pesos dry up. Without food, Luis went back in time. He shares that his days are filled with the need to go into the bush and hunt.

The Cuban State cries about the embargo and paints it as a “blockade,” but the only blockade that exists is that of the State against the citizen, and it is the one that takes its toll, leaving land without crops and stomachs without food. The bureaucrats at the Palace of the Revolution kick their feet because Washington does not give credit to a country that does not pay, and because U.S. politicians consider it immoral to trade freely with a regime that prohibits free trade among its inhabitants.

As in India, for more than 40 years cows were “sacred” in Cuba. In one way by faith, in another by the hand of the god-State. It was only until 2021 that the sale of beef was authorized on the island, and its production and sale by private parties was decriminalized.

Since 1979, no producer could sell this meat, and buyers were punished with up to a year in jail for buying it. At the time of its decriminalization, the pound was paid in the informal market for up to $12. Castroism announced that it would pay the peasant for two kilos of meat. Magnanimous.

Faithful to the disconnection with natural laws, Cuban statism projected in 2021 the allocation of an additional 3,461 million pesos to the annual budget, “in order to stimulate agricultural production.” But the investment was nothing. The same voluntarism that “removed” money from the coffers, generated one of the highest inflation rates on the planet that year and its consequent devaluation of the peso.

He believed that subsidizing with “soft loans” electricity, water, fumigation, and feed costs for pig farming, he would magically compensate for the lack of economic freedom of 63 years.

In 1979, the first revolutionary Penal Code criminalized the slaughter of cattle. But the hunger was so great that, far from stopping, in 1987 the sacrifice of horses had to be made illegal in the letter. In 1999, the severity of sentences for slaughtering cattle increased. Whoever sold or transported that meat would receive up to eight years in prison. But there is no decree that stops hunger. Just freedom and work.

Before 1959, Cuba was an important regional cattle producer. In the first years, Castroism attributed its incipient reduction to sabotage by its internal opponents. However, once thousands of them were shot, and hundreds of thousands more thrown into jail or exile, the phenomenon did not reverse.

Today, the socialist paradise imports 80% of the food it consumes and dedicates annually, with frequent restrictions due to lack of liquidity and non-payment, about $2 billion to these imports.

On the other hand, hunger is an effective control mechanism. It prevents thinking beyond the day to day, to satisfy the urgent need that literally climbs the individual on the tightrope of life or death. At the same time, a desperate society can become a tsunami of violence. Castroism has played the drip strategy for decades: miserable portions through the ration card, enough to cover the cupboard for a few days, occupying your mind by “inventing” most of the month, but in a model that keeps expectant the body until the next sale of products.

So much has been “invented” in Cuba that in 2012, due to a national lack of oil, oil from crematoriums circulated on the Havana black market… for cooking food.

As the presenter, Juan explained at that time, with each cremation, about 20 liters of burning oil are used for the treatment of smoke gases. From a warehouse of the Guanabacoa incinerator, on the outskirts of the capital, the liquid came out of yore.

There was a scandal, in the proportions that the story warranted, and apparently, they cut the network. But what the revolutionaries have not cut is the shortage of oil, which appears from time to time on the island of “there is no.”

A painter friend who came to the United States in the late 1960s experienced a panic attack in Los Angeles. She entered a small grocery store and had to be taken out unconscious. From the empty shelf, the desperation for what to eat tomorrow, and the long lines, to endless shelves, full to the brim and with so many brands and prices to choose from.

My wife and I arrived in Miami already knowing other countries, on both sides of the Atlantic. The impact of overflowing shops was not as much as for compatriots who arrive from nothing every day to a nation of abundance. Even so, when I enter the cheap Dollar Tree or Walmart, the first thing I think about is my friends and their children, my mother, the ministries of my church, which help the elderly and abandoned children, the homeless. It sure happens to others.

One imagines filling suitcases, yes. That lucky patch. But I also think about how much free enterprise could bring to Cuba. Employment, food, and medicines. The more the free market is respected, the closer the paradigm of land flowing with milk and honey is.

For me, a clear mark of abundance in the United States manifested itself on Halloween. For that day, costumes and decorations are prepared for weeks. Candy sales skyrocket. On the night itself, I saw neighborhoods fill up with boys and families where no soul walks at any other time of the year. “Trick or treat!” they shouted before extending their hands.

The next day, on the pavement, the sidewalks, the gardens of the entire neighborhood, there were hundreds of candies, chocolates, and little toys. All sealed, slipped carelessly from baskets and baskets, forgotten because there are more and tomorrow there will be again, because buying a cookie for your son doesn’t cost ten hours in line and a shoving fight.

Children in Cuba, for example, skin pelicans to sell their little meat for 70 Cuban pesos (less than a dollar) each. The story does not take place at the beginning of the Revolution or in the 1990s, but in 2022, in the coastal town of Caibarién. Through dirt streets one of them pedals with a bucket full of pelicans without feathers or skin. Potential buyers appear from the rickety houses.

Meanwhile, the children who “fish” for pelicans kill their hunger by boiling the corpses of the birds with brown sugar and guava leaves. “You throw out the water three times,” they detailed to the reporter, “and that way they don’t taste so bad.”

*This article was done with the help of the Cuban Studies Institute.

AUTHOR

Yoe Suarez

Yoe Suárez is a writer, producer, and journalist, exiled from Cuba due to his investigative reporting about themes like torture, political prisoners, government black lists, cybersurveillance, and freedom of expression and conscience. He is the author of the books “Leviathan: Political Police and Socialist Terror” and “El Soplo del Demonio: Violence and Gangsterism in Havana”.

EDITORS NOTE: This Washington Stand column is republished with permission. All rights reserved. ©2023 Family Research Council.


The Washington Stand is Family Research Council’s outlet for news and commentary from a biblical worldview. The Washington Stand is based in Washington, D.C. and is published by FRC, whose mission is to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy and the culture from a biblical worldview. We invite you to stand with us by partnering with FRC.

International Women’s Day Exposed for ‘Communist Roots’

Dedicating a whole month to commemorate a particular demographic is not rare, according to the U.S. calendar. In February, the spotlight is on black history and the significant role black leaders have played in our country’s past. November is National American Indian Heritage Month. Now, as we reach the midpoint of March, America is marking Women’s History Month, which encourages “the study, observance and celebration of the vital role of women,” with a special focus on International Women’s Day on March 8.

During these designated months, social media platforms, news stations, radio hosts, podcasters, and others encourage people to participate, but it does prompt an important question: What led to these celebrations and who decides which demographics are recognized?

On Thursday, Mary Szoch, director of the Center for Human Dignity at Family Research Council, joined FRC President Tony Perkins on “Washington Watch” to share her reaction to the White House’s decision to honor a biological man who identifies as a woman with the International Woman of Courage Award.

“So honoring a man to celebrate women … what am I missing?” Perkins asked, referring to honoree Alba Rueda, a biological man. To this, Szoch replied that it wasn’t Perkins who was missing something but the Biden administration who was. She added, “In fact, what they’re missing is the knowledge of what is a woman.”

That point was driven home at a hearing in March of 2022 when Ketanji Brown Jackson, President Biden’s Supreme Court nominee, stated that she was unable to define a woman. According to Szoch, this seems to be a leftist trend.

“The Biden administration thinks that if you put on a dress or if you wear high heels or if you put on lipstick, that’s what makes someone a woman,” Szoch said. Yet, she argued. there is much more to a woman than that.

“What makes women different from men is written in our very DNA. Written in our very bodies — in our physical makeup — is a space for another that we are actually physically oriented towards,” she stated.,” she stated. “It is within a woman that another exists and her very body nourishes that other person. So that influences the way that women perceive the world, the way that they do everything, the way that we interact and the way that we view things.”

Perkins wasn’t surprised that the International Woman of Courage Award was given to a man, as it is “consistent with the origins of this day.” With the rise of the LGBTQ movement came more tolerance of people who identify as the opposite sex. According to Szoch, labeling a man as “courageous” for identifying as a woman on International Women’s Day can be traced to its “communist roots.”

As Szoch went on to note, Karl Marx, the father of communism, was known to have abused and cheated on his wife, Jenny Marx. She also observed that one of his other known goals along his pursuit of political power was to dismantle the family. In a 2022 article written by Joy Stockbauer now a correspondent for The Washington Stand, she expressed the irony of International Women’s Day being founded on Marxist values. “The only aspect of womanhood that communists celebrate is its ability to be exploited,” she wrote. “Communists have repeatedly used female empowerment as a disguise for human rights violations against women.”

In March of 1857, New York City garment and textile workers went on strike over low wages and long workdays. In 1889, the editor of the German Social Democratic party’s women’s newspaper, Clara Zetkin, began laying “the groundwork to eventually establish International Woman’s Day as a Communist holiday.” The concept began to trickle into European and Asian regions and was established as a Communist holiday by Vladimir Lenin.

This newly-created holiday “was a day about women’s ‘equality,’” Szoch noted. “But of course, equality to them didn’t mean that men and women have equal dignity. It meant that men and women are the same and that we should treat them as if they’re interchangeable.”

As Szoch pointed out, the holiday was founded on the idea that there are no fundamental differences between men and women, discounting the unique roles of wife and mother. “We’ve seen time and time again,” she said, “that communist regimes don’t value women, that in fact women are abused by them, that their dignity is disregarded.”

Although our country has fallen prey to the Marxist origins of International Women’s Day and have started honoring biological men instead, Szoch underscored, many are still bravely standing for the dignity of what a true woman is. Former University of Kentucky swimmer-turned-women’s-sports-activist Riley Gaines would have been a great choice, Szoch insisted.

In the meantime, she said, “What I’ve seen from a lot of women [encountering this radical agenda] is a lot of eye rolls. … [E]very glass ceiling that was shattered, the Biden administration has worked to reinforce with cement.”

AUTHOR

Abigail Olsson

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EDITORS NOTE: This Washington Stand column is republished with permission. All rights reserved. ©2023 Family Research Council


The Washington Stand is Family Research Council’s outlet for news and commentary from a biblical worldview. The Washington Stand is based in Washington, D.C. and is published by FRC, whose mission is to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy and the culture from a biblical worldview. We invite you to stand with us by partnering with FRC.

A Child’s-Eye View of Communism’s Absurdities

Candid childhood memories of life behind the Iron Curtain


It is a truism to say that children have a grasp of reality different from adults; a clearer and more honest grasp that in most cases they lose with maturity. Rare is the man or woman who retains that innocent capacity to see through grown-up hypocrisy and pretence, presented to us so vividly in Hans Andersen’s memorable fairy-tale, The Emperor’s New Clothes.

In this humorous memoir of growing up in a city (unidentified) of 40,000 in the southern Urals of the Soviet Union in the 1970s-1980s, Fr Alexander Krylov, of Russian-German origin, manages to retain the undeceived eyes of childhood as he relates the absurdities and contradictions of life under Communism.

God and family

So many memoirs of living under the Soviet regime are, understandably, riven with bitterness and anger; the suffering has been too great to forget. The young Krylov, an only child, was protected from this by the love and faith of his family: his Catholic mother and grandmother and his Orthodox father.

The latter died when he was aged seven; showing unusual understanding for his age, Krylov realised that he was now “the one man in the family.” A certain independence of outlook seems to have characterised him from the start — probably because, despite the constant atheist propaganda impressed on him at school and in the wider society, “God’s presence in everyday life was… self-evident for our family.”

Much of this was owing to his grandmother’s influence for, as the family breadwinner, his mother had to work long hours outside the home. This grandmother, who had grown up in a German-speaking colony in Russia, resembled a traditional Russian “babushka” in her fortitude, her generosity and her strong faith that years of living in Leonid Brezhnev’s decrepit Soviet society could not erase.

In this world, all its citizens were officially atheist yet, as Krylov relates, everyone in his neighbourhood “knew” who the believers were and what religion they followed. His grandmother “saw an ally in every human being who was seeking God — Jews, Orthodox and Muslims” because — especially in death — “common prayer was much more important than any disagreement.”

There were no churches in his city and he only saw the inside of an Orthodox church (in western Ukraine) before starting school, aged six. Overwhelmed by its icons, candles and awe-inspiring atmosphere, Krylov told his mother, “Let’s stay here forever.” Undeterred, his grandmother erected a homemade altar in their small apartment, with its holy pictures, holy water, hymns and secret celebrations of the great Christian feasts. A candle would be lit in the window at Christmas; it was “somehow implicitly clear that God does not abandon human beings as long as a light is burning in at least one window on Christmas Eve and at least one person is waiting for the Christ-child.”

Economic woes

The author takes a gentle swipe at western society, obsessed with dietary fashions, when he explains, in a chapter titled “Healthy Diet”, why Soviet citizens had no choice but a healthy diet. Trying to survive in a corrupt and inefficient command economy, almost all families had an allotment with fruit trees and vegetables, to compensate for what they could not buy in the shops: everything possible was pickled, canned, stored or preserved. For some reason chickens were plentiful:

“Thanks to the poor work of the chemical industry, they were raised with no additives and usually looked as though they had walked by themselves from the chicken factory to the grocery store.”

I laughed aloud as I read this and other reminiscences, narrated in the candid way of a man who has not lost the artless gaze of a child. (After a distinguished academic career in Moscow, Fr Krylov decided to become a priest aged 42, on Easter Monday 2011 and was ordained in 2016.)

Another anecdote describes how he briefly worked in a grocery store where the shelves were often lacking common items buyers craved. Organising the shop’s store room, he noticed many such items, piled them on a trolley and wheeled it through into the shop, to the delighted surprise of the customers. The teenage boy could not understand why the manageress looked so discomfited and why his employment was suddenly curtailed.

Inner life

Just as the late Russian poet, Irina Ratushinskaya, who spent four years in the Gulag for writing “subversive” poetry, commented she was told so often as a child “there is no God”, that she began to believe in Him, Krylov reflects: “The prohibition against owning a Bible in the Soviet Union could only confirm its importance.”

In a telling incident in his teens, he describes a classroom meeting where these young Soviet citizens planned “to put socialist democracy into action.” This meant denouncing a fellow student who would not obey the rules. Krylov, who had befriended him, defended him in front of his classmates. They then turned on him, aware that he too was somehow “different.” The author comments, “Although I was always present, I lived my own life”. This hidden, inner life, which they sensed though it was never made explicit, presented an existential threat to his fellow student ideologues.

Inevitably, Lenin’s image was everywhere. Joining the Communist youth group, the Young Pioneers, one wore a red neckerchief and star. “Depicted on this star were the head of Lenin and three tongues of fire. I shared with no one my impression that this star depicted the head of Lenin burning in hell.” This was the response of a child whose private faith, never mentioned in class, helped to protect him against the atheism he was forced to listen to in public.

Finally, aged 15, overhearing the jocular remark of a friend’s father that vodka was “opium for the people”, Krylov comments: “Suddenly my eyes were opened: [I realised that] Communism had simply become a new religion.”

If the Emperor in this case was not exactly naked, nonetheless the short, discrete chapters of this kindly memoir remind readers that his clothes were uncomfortable, unsuitable, ill-fitting and threadbare.

This review has been republished with the author’s permission from The Conservative Woman.

AUTHOR

Francis Phillips

More by Francis Phillips

EDITORS NOTE: This MercatorNet column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

Marxists Spoke! Sadly, We Listened.

Marxists spoke: Never talk about politics and religion.  Don’t trust your parents. Be the silent majority.  Sadly, we listened.


A newly released report from Steve Moore, states that there is no one, NOT ONE, ZERO person in the OBiden regime that knows anything about business. think about this: These people are pushing their untried, untested, complete failure policies on We the People because they don’t care about people or results. They only care about power.

It seems as though our SCOTUS believes in the US Constitution. We won great decisions in the Supreme Court but got screwed by the Gutless Outrageous Prostitutes = GOP. (Thank you Sally Baptiste for that great new name for the GOP.)   Are you still going to vote for the same traitors again? Chaney is out begging democrats to vote for her. I hope that even Wyoming Democrats are not that stupid.

To understand what’s going on today we really have to go back and look at the 60s-70s. Most Americans pushing abortion are Boomers from that era. The boomers, myself included were the hippies, the flower children, the rock n  rollers, anti-G-d, Anti-family and Anti-America.  Morality was tossed out the window when G-d was removed from public buildings, due to 1person complaining in Engel v. Vitale . Then we accepted perversion, drugs, liquor,  sex as the new lifestyle. We would do anything our parents didn’t do. We hated the establishment.

In the 60s-70s we were so despondent and in such despair at seeing our great American heroes being assassinated in front of our very eyes. We strongly believed that the assassinations were part of a government coup. Of course we were told we were conspiracy nuts. HA! John F Kennedy, Martin Luther King JR, Robert Kennedy, our hope for a bright future was slowly fading.  We were forced into a war by draft in Vietnam that no one wanted. We were forced to fight a war in Vietnam against communism while promoting communism at home in school. How sick was that?  We were taught to lay our hatred on the heroes that were forced to fight. While those who avoided the draft became teachers in this new education called Social Studies/sustainability aka communism.

And so like all other peoples of the world when we were abused we responded. We were angry .We demonstrated, we marched and we rioted. We destroyed statues, burned buildings and listened to the emotional news about the war even though we knew they were lying.

We were taught to divert our attention into sex and drugs which we learned in school through a variety of “new” SEX Ed courses and we learned fast. After all we learned in school so it had to be OK. We had multiple outlets to express our new found “free love” like Studio 54, Plato’s Retreat and Playboy Club.  We often took out our hostility in our music and art. Bill Ayers (Obama’s mentor and leader of the Weather Underground responsible for multiple bombings of federal buildings, now a professor) asked John Lennon to write a song for the revolution. John wrote “Revolution”. Bill was pissed. (Read the lyrics)

We took massive quantities of drugs and had Love Ins with sex, drugs and  lots of liquor hooking up at any time with anyone. Nothing has changed. Those teens, grew up and are now running America using their never tried utopian/Marxist theories that they write when under the influence of something. If they wanted the drug war over, they would end it instead of participating in it. These insane illogical theories don’t work, can’t work, will never work. They are instead designed to take forever and be way over budget.  If their programs worked, they couldn’t bleed us dry.

What did we learn? Well my group of teenagers were told never talk about politics and religion.  Don’t trust your parents after all anyone over 30 doesn’t know what is going on. Be the silent majority.  Never talk about the war. We were told the government knows best.  We grew up to being so anti-establishment that it didn’t matter what the establishment did or said we figured they were just lying. The GOP and DNC are filled with these globalists who vow to take down America’s greatness and steal everything they can’t get legally. . Check out the “GOP-Gutless Outrageous Prostitutes”  who just voted to take away the only protection we have with our guns while they bring terrorists into America. They hate Americans. They want us to suffer so we will be happy with their government crumbs. We will do more for less while they take everything and we will be happy with drugs and video games. Yuval Noah Harari from World Economic Forum describes their intent:

War makes their problem of too many useless eaters, easy to dispose of. These globalists will protect the border of Ukraine and provide Ukraine guns while disarming Americans. All they want is for us to DIE (Diversity, Inclusion, Equity) so they can steal our property and keep power.

Where did we turn to vent our frustration and agree to transform America? Our educators took care of that. In 1989, Shirley Mc Cune from the McRel Foundation told the Governors Association:

We will change education from fact based to value based (on emotion) learning.

(Emotional people are easier to control using emotional triggers.)

We will stop focusing on the individual, and focus on the collective (we can conform everyone to the group mentality.)

We will train for work, not educate for life. (We need workers not thinkers or experts).

Communists learned that uneducated people are easier to control.

While all eyes looked at colleges, they infiltrated K-12 while convincing the family to “keep up with the Jones” by overspending so both mom and dad had to work ensuring the breakup of the family. The evolution of the family went from Father Knows Best to All in the Family to Married with Children showing how dysfunctional families are really the norm.

Today we suffer the results of those teachings as our government officials and experts are only capable of reading their talking points. I am just following directions, you will hear as their excuse for their third world actions of government against the people. Our police, after being emasculated (the goal of the feminist movement), will stand and watch as children are being slaughtered because they are just following directions.  The hell with the Americans.  They are just useless eaters. Less people is better they have been taught. According to Stalin, “Less people, less problems.”

We turned to a new type of government called socialism. It sounded so social, fun and inviting. It sounded so nice. All people will look after each other. Everyone would share. It will be wonderful. Everyone will all have the same stuff. And so the confused children turned to the communists who were so ready to open their arms for their new flock. The commies changed all the words and definitions to reflect Peace and Love. We followed Saul Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals and they offered the people exactly what Khrushchev said. I will feed you little bits of socialism and one day you will be a communist.

Now we have America’s new normal. How does that work?

Kevin Sorbo on  Twitter:

“Can I drive your car? No, you’re 5

Can I have a beer?  No, you’re 5

Can I have a cigarette? No, you’re 5

Can I have a gun? No, you’re 5

Can I take hormones and change my gender? Of Course, you know what’s best.”


My conversation (Italics) with a Greenie:   

Greenie: I am getting an EV. I will save tons of money on fossil fuel since it will soon be outlawed. I can depend on clean green energy from wind or sun. No dirty fuel for me.

That is great but what do you do if there is no wind or sun. 

It won’t matter because I will plug my car in the wall socket.

Where does the electricity in the socket come from?

It comes from the wires.

Where does the electricity in the wires come from?

It comes from the power company.

Where does the electricity in the power company come from? From the grid.  Where does the electricity from the grid come from? 

DUH! OOPS Ok Where?

Fossil fuel.


NO FOSSIL FUEL = NO ELECTRICITY.

We are assisting in our own failure.

CO2 is necessary to produce food not climate change.

America is having a food shortage crisis. CO2 helps plants aka food to grow.

CO2 is about .03% of the atmosphere and is a result of warming, NOT the cause.

Joe said he doesn’t know why or what to do about the food shortages but Joe has a plan. He increased ethanol aka corn aka soy in gas which burns our food for fuel resulting in less food at a higher cost for Americans and more expensive gas.

“Growing ethanol not food wastes: 5Billion tons of N Fertilizer; 68 Trillion BTU of natural gas; 57000sq MILES (not acres) of farmland.” Dr. Sarah Taber.

Joe has opened border for illegals to eat our food giving Americans less food; higher cost.

Then Joe wrote an EO forcing new furnaces to eliminate CO2. No CO2 = No Food.  Since over 20 processing plants were attacked, Joe signed an EO to give $1Billion to farmers to build new plants. Only the EPA regulations make it cost prohibitive.  Is it Joe’s intent to starve Americans so he can trade food for guns?

American government schools teach their students to be mediocre.  Multiple educators, myself included know that Common Core insures America’s children will be 2 years below average. Now we are surprised that they are.

Based on their IQ test results, the woman from the U.S. scored 16 points lower than that of her sibling in Korea.

This is a recent article regarding the low numbers of 3rd Graders who can read at proficiency level of 4 or 5 on the scale of 1-5

These programs DON’T WORK!

We just had LGBTQ month. Where is the Hetero Month? Or the Cisgender Month.  After all we are the majority and in a “Democracy” the majority wins. So why are we not recognized?  These labels are just used to divide the people. Really who cares what anyone does in their bedroom?

My question is: Can you do the job?

It is obvious in this failed regime the answer is No, but not to worry their departments met their DIE quota.

Now the big question:  Is America worth saving? What will you do about it?

©Karen Schoen. All rights reserved.

RELATED ARTICLE: San Francisco School Returns to Merit-Based Admissions

Prominent Pro-Abortion Group Appears To Be Front For Radical Revolutionary Communists

A prominent pro-abortion activist group downplaying its association with the Revolutionary Communist Party (RCP) shares significant infrastructure and leadership with the radical outfit’s other offshoot groups, a Daily Caller analysis has found.

Although RiseUp4AbortionRights seems like most other pro-abortion groups at first glance, other pro-abortion activists released a statement in late June asserting that RiseUp is a front for a “pyramid scheme” and cult of personality. The Daily Caller’s examination of the organization’s leaders, online presence, and fundraising platforms lend credence to the claim that RiseUp is an offshoot front group for the RCP.

“Support for communism in the U.S. is incredibly low, so one way for these individuals to jump-start is to ride the coattails of something that has much more acceptability” in mainstream discussion of current political events, Brian Levin, director of the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism, told the Daily Caller.

RiseUp shares leadership with the RCP and several of its related organizations. Sunsara Taylor is a prominent RCP spokeswoman and a co-founder of RiseUp. Taylor founded RiseUp in January 2022 to protest for “abortion on demand and without apology.” An earlier pro-abortion group Taylor founded, Stop Patriarchy, used the same slogan and also attracted scrutiny from other pro-abortion activist organizations, the Austin Chronicle reported in 2014. Stop Patriarchy has not posted any new tweets to its Twitter feed since 2020, but the organization’s website features more recent footage of an interview in which Taylor discusses the consequences of the Dobbs decision.

Taylor also founded The World Can’t Wait, Inc., (TWCW) alongside another RCP devotee in 2006 to oppose the Bush administration, particularly its policies in the Middle East.

Taylor went on to co-found another organization, Refuse Fascism, in 2016 to resist the incoming Trump administration. At the time, the RCP took credit for helping create Refuse Fascism on its website. The “what you can do now” quick links section at the bottom of the RCP website still links directly to the Refuse Fascism homepage.

Another leading RiseUp activist, Sam Goldman, is a prominent spokeswoman for Refuse Fascism. In a Jan. 2022 episode of the Refuse Fascism podcast featured on the organization’s website, Goldman stated that she has “been busy helping launch RiseUp4AbortionRights.”

The RCP website promotes digital content from RiseUp and Refuse Fascism. Similarly, Refuse Fascism’s website features digital content from RiseUp and the RCP. All three organizations generally promote each others’ digital content on their websites without making clear the nature of their association.

On its main fundraising portal, RiseUp states that it is sharing certain “tools” with Refuse Fascism until RiseUp “establishes infrastructure” for fundraising of its own. RiseUp’s PayPal fundraising account also includes the name of TWCW. Refuse Fascism and TWCW share a New York City mailing address.

RiseUp’s website claims that the group spends donated funds on protest materials and logistics. Amid accusations of financial impropriety from other pro-abortion groups, RiseUp released a statement promising that it “has never used any funds it has raised for any purposes other than exactly what the funds were raised for.”

The RiseUp statement derided criticism of Taylor and Avakian as “scurrilous and false.” The RCP added that the accusations from other pro-abortion groups “smack strongly of the tactics of the right wing fascist forces in this country and the political police (the FBI, etc.) who create pretexts to go after revolutionary groups” in its own statement. The RCP flatly denied ever having used RiseUp funds in any capacity in its statement.

Taylor refused to say if RiseUp would submit to an independent audit of its financial dealings in order to clear up the accusations, and referred the Daily Caller to previous statements on the matter. Neither RiseUp nor the RCP disclosed documentation in response statements to definitively disprove the allegations of impropriety.

VIEW THEIR INSTAGRAM PAGE HERE

The RCP centers on Avakian’s revolutionary ideology, which RCP materials refer to as “new communism.” Critics, including those who signed the June statement against RiseUp, have claimed that the RCP is a Maoist group that elevates Avakian and his teachings as messianic. The late June statement from pro-abortion groups opposed to RiseUp asserted that the RCP established RiseUp as a front to divert funds and people towards the growth of its ideology rather than earnestly supporting the pro-abortion cause.

“There will be individuals who use this division and deep and wide disappointment with the Dobbs decision to not only stake claim with regard to abortion rights, but also to make their overall failed political worldview an attractive option” to naive demonstrators, Levin said.

RiseUp has become one of the most visible pro-abortion groups in the United States. Democratic New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez joined RiseUp demonstrators in protest the day of the release of Dobbs. Taylor held a megaphone to Ocasio-Cortez’s face while the congresswoman led chants calling the Supreme Court illegitimate. Several protesters, including Taylor, have been spotted and photographed wearing RCP merchandise at RiseUp demonstrations.

The group has appeared at many demonstrations across the country since its inception, and has received attention from the press and celebrities. Hillary Clinton promoted a RiseUp protest on Twitter in early May. Hollywood social justice warriors Mark Ruffalo and Rosanna Arquette have publicly supported RiseUp, according to its website. MSNBC even broadcast an interview with two young RiseUp activists.

RiseUp protesters deploy unique tactics, including smearing red paint over their private parts. They also paint green handprints over the chests of protesters wearing white. Doing so represents “a facsimile of what would happen to actual living women, hemorrhaging to death from unsafe abortions,” one RiseUp activist explained to the Daily Caller at a recent protest in front of the Supreme Court.

“These are opportunists who are trying to take advantage of people of good will who have deeply held, sincere beliefs with regard to the right to abortion,” Levin concluded.

None of the signatories of the statement in opposition to RCP that were contacted returned the Daily Caller’s request for comment.

AUTHOR

NICHOLAS POPE

Contributor.

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EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Caller column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

New Museum Bears Witness to Communism’s Horrors, Honors Its Victims

In total, more than 100 million have been killed under communist regimes in the past 100 years.


In the heart of Washington, D.C., behind the doors of a building not unlike the others with which it shares a block, lies a most visceral testament to the horrors of communism—a political ideology still all too dominant in the world today.

The new museum, from the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation, has been in the works for many years. It opened to the public on Monday.

Entering it is like walking into a vault. Or possibly a tomb. Passing by a wall with large, embossed words reading, “REMEMBERING the victims of Communism,” the space quickly darkens and narrows.

Pictures and small video screens containing images of regimes and victims alike emblazon it, evoking a somber tone. Beyond those images, on a larger screen, a six-minute film lays out the rise of Vladimir Lenin and the Soviet Union as a communist power.

The room then funnels visitors into the world of the gulag. Here, there are artifacts from the notorious Soviet prison camps, physical remnants of the millions of Russians who passed through them. In one case sits a teddy bear and next to it a “valenki”—a felt boot that shod gulag prisoners.

There’s also a replica of “black bread,” an oblong, charcoal-colored loaf that gulag prisoners relied on for sustenance. Small measurements show how much of a loaf would be doled out as rations to each prisoner, depending on their docility or misbehavior.

From 1934 to 1947, an estimated 10 million were sent to the camps. Another estimate puts fatalities between 1.2 million and 1.7 million from 1918 to 1956.

An informational panel explains how Josef Stalin, the longest reigning leader of the Soviet Union, intentionally used a famine to starve more than 3 million Ukrainians in 1932 and 1933. Some estimate the death toll reached 7 million.

In total, the museum estimates, more than 100 million have been killed under communist regimes in the past 100 years.

On one wall runs a film, a slideshow of simple, hand-drawn images depicting the hardship of life in gulags, prisons, and work camps from communist regimes around the world. The images were etched by the survivors. Testimonies of what other survivors witnessed while imprisoned are read aloud as the images scroll.

“Every case where [communism] has been tried, it leads to mass atrocities,” Ambassador Andrew Bremberg, the president and CEO of the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation, told me. “Truly, the worst examples of human suffering in history in terms of the most brutal, mass-murdering regimes.”

A broader scope of the suffering is played out in the museum’s largest space. There, a film animates the history of communism’s spread across the globe, detailing which nations fell to it. In one corner, the number of fatalities under communism, as well as those subjugated by it, rolls ever upward.

Informational panels throughout the museum detail specific atrocities, such as Pol Pot’s genocide of the Cambodian people, which wiped out 25% of the population of the Southeast Asian nation, and Mao Zedong’s failure in collectivizing China’s agriculture, resulting in a famine that killed anywhere from 20 million to 43 million people.

Juxtaposed to those are stories—written out and accompanied by photographs—of resistance to communism, ranging from peaceful demonstrations to armed uprisings: the Hungarian Revolution of 1956, the Prague Spring of 1968, and the Tiananmen Square massacre of 1989 in Beijing, to name a few.

Bremberg said that the former two examples, while lesser known, are of equal importance to Tiananmen Square.

He also cited a statistic woven throughout the museum: 1.5 billion. That’s the estimated number of people still living under communism. The largest communist nation today is China, accounting for the vast majority of that number.

The Chinese Communist Party, which rules over the country, has subjugated more than 1 million Uyghur Muslims, an ethnic minority, to reeducation camps, forced sterilization and abortions, forced labor, and surveillance. It’s genocide on an industrial scale.

Last year, the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation received a series of leaked internal documents belonging to the Chinese Communist Party. The findings offer damning evidence of its coordinated efforts against the Uyghurs. You can learn more about them here.

Several nations formerly under communist control, such as Poland, also have museums recounting their own stories of existence under communism. None, however, offer a singular snapshot of its global impact like the new one in Washington.

“There’s nothing like this in the world,” Bremberg said. “It’s extremely important to have this in our nation’s capital. We have millions of tourists, particularly school groups, that come through that really need to learn this, because communism is a horrible evil.”

Although research has shown that up to 1 in 3 millennials view communism favorably, Bremberg thinks it’s the failure to explain the legacy of the ideology—certainly not life under such an ideology—that has given it such an appeal.

“What we’re really trying to do is put the face of the victims of communism forward as a way of educating people,” Bremberg said. “You can draw a pretty obvious conclusion that this is a horrible system of government.”

“[It’s] the scourge of the 20th century, and unfortunately still with us in the 21st century,” he added. “If we want to prevent that from costing untold lives in the future, people need to learn about the crimes of communism … through the experience of its victims.”

Adjacent to the museum’s exit stands a wall visitors pass by before leaving. It’s covered in a patchwork of portraits—the faces of those who have fought back against communism.

Amid the portraits, there are two simple words: “Remember us.”

This piece was republished with permission from the Daily Signal.

AUTHOR

Philip Reynolds

Philip Reynolds is a digital specialist at The Heritage Foundation.

EDITORS NOTE: This FEE column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

Why Do People Become Communists, and Why Do They Stick With It?

So if there is no rational case for communism as such, why do people go for this stuff?


For as long as I can remember, I’ve puzzled about why people become communists. I have no doubt about why someone would stop being one. After all, we have a century of evidence of the murder, famine, and general destruction caused by the idea. Ignoring all this takes a special kind of willful blindness to reality.

Even the theory of communism itself is a complete mess. There is really no such thing as common ownership of goods that are obviously scarce in the real world. There must be some solution to the problem of scarcity beyond just wishing reality away. Perhaps ownership and trade? Slogans and dreams are hardly a suitable substitute for a workable program.

But how communism would work in practice is not something they want to talk about. They just imagined that some magical Hegelian shift would take place in the course of history that would work it all out.

So if there is no rational case for communism as such, why do people go for this stuff?

The Red Century

The New York Times has been exploring that issue in a series of remarkable reflections that they have labelled Red Century. I can’t get enough, even the ones that are written by people who are—how shall I say?—suspiciously sympathetic to communism as a cause.

The most recent installment is written by Vivian Gornick. She reflects on how her childhood world was dominated by communists.

The sociology of the progressive world was complex. At its center were full-time organizers for the Communist Party, at the periphery left-wing sympathizers, and at various points in between everything from rank-and-file party card holders to respected fellow travelers….

When these people sat down to talk, Politics sat down with them, Ideas sat down with them; above all, History sat down with them. They spoke and thought within a context that lifted them out of the nameless, faceless obscurity into which they had been born, and gave them the conviction that they had rights as well as obligations. They were not simply the disinherited of the earth, they were proletarians with a founding myth of their own (the Russian Revolution) and a civilizing worldview (Marxism).

While it is true that thousands of people joined the Communist Party in those years because they were members of the hardscrabble working class (garment district Jews, West Virginia miners, California fruit pickers), it was even truer that many more thousands in the educated middle class (teachers, scientists, writers) joined because for them, too, the party was possessed of a moral authority that lent shape and substance, through its passion for structure and the eloquence of its rhetoric, to an urgent sense of social injustice….

The Marxist vision of world solidarity as translated by the Communist Party induced in the most ordinary of men and women a sense of one’s own humanity that ran deep, made life feel large; large and clarified. It was to this clarity of inner being that so many became not only attached, but addicted. No reward of life, no love nor fame nor wealth, could compete with the experience. It was this all-in-allness of world and self that, all too often, made of the Communists true believers who could not face up to the police state corruption at the heart of their faith.

Sounds fascinating, if bonkers (Marxism is hardly a “civilizing worldview”). It sounds less like an intellectual salon of ideas and more like a religious delusion. Those too can be well intentioned. The key here is a dogmatic ideology, which serves as a kind of substitute for religion. It has a vision of hell (workers and peasants exploited by private-capital wielding capitalist elite), a vision of heaven (a world of universal and equal prosperity and peace), and a means of getting from one to the other (revolution from below, as led by the vanguard of the proletariat).

Once you accept such an ideology, anything intellectual becomes possible. Nothing can shake you from it. Okay, that’s not entirely true. One thing can shake you of it: when the leader of the cult repudiates the thing you believe in most strongly.

Khrushchev’s Heresy

She was 20 years old in 1956, when Nikita Khrushchev spoke to the Soviet Communist Party about the crimes of Stalin. Apparently the unrelenting reports of famine, persecution, and mass death, from the early years of Bolshevik rule – and even the revelation of the Hitler-Stalin pact – would have demoralized them earlier. But no:

The 20th Congress report brought with it political devastation for the organized left around the world. Within weeks of its publication, 30,000 people in this country quit the party, and within the year it was as it had been in its 1919 beginnings: a small sect on the American political map.

Amazing.

The Early Reds

And speaking of this small 1919 sect, I’m reminded of one of my favorite movies: Reds (1981). I could watch it another 20 times. It explores the lives of the American communists of the turn of the 20th century, their loves, longings, and aspirations. The focus is on fiery but deluded Jack Reed, but it includes portraits of a passionate Louise Bryant, the gentile Max Eastman, an edgy Eugene O’Neill, and the ever inspiring Emma Goldman.

These people weren’t the Progressives of the mainstream that history credits with having so much influence over policy in those days. These were the real deal: the Communists that were the source of national frenzy during the Red Scare of the 1920s.

The movie portrays them not as monsters but idealists. They were all very talented, artistic, mostly privileged in upbringing, and what drew them to communism was not bloodlust for genocide but some very high ideals.

They felt a passion for justice. They wanted to end war. They opposed exploitation. They longed for universal freedom and maximum civil liberty. They despised the entrenched hierarchies of the old order and hoped for a new society in which everyone had an equal chance.

All of that sounds reasonable until you get to the details. The communists had a curious understanding of each of these concepts. Freedom meant freedom from material want. Justice meant a planned distribution of goods. The end of war meant a new form of war against the capitalists who they believed created war. The hierarchies they wanted to be abolished were not just state-privileged nobles but also the meritocratic elites of industrial capitalism, and even small land owners, no matter how small the plot.

Why be a communist rather than just a solid liberal of the old school? In the way the movie portrays it, the problem was not so much in their goals but in their mistaken means. They hated the state as it existed but imagined that a new “dictatorship of the proletariat” could become a transition mechanism to usher in their classless society. That led them to cheer on the Bolshevik Revolution in its early stages, and work for the same thing to happen in the United States.

The Dream Dies

Watching their one-by-one demoralization is painful. Goldman sees the betrayal immediately. Reed becomes an apologist for genocide. Bryant forgets pretending to be political and believing in free love, marries Reed, and tends to his medical needs before his death. O’Neill just becomes a full-time cynic (and drunk). It took Max Eastman longer to lose the faith but he eventually became an anti-socialist and wrote for FEE.

The initial demoralization of the early American communists came in the 1920s. They came to realize that all the warning against this wicked ideology – having been written about for many centuries prior, even back to the ancient world – were true.

Eastman, for example, realized that he was seeking to liberate people by taking from them the three things people love most in life: their families, their religion, and their property. Instead of creating a new heaven on earth, they had become apologists for a killing machine.

Stunned and embarrassed, they moved on with life.

But the history didn’t end there. There were still more recruits being added to the ranks, generations of them. The same thing happened after 1989. Some people lost the faith, others decided that socialism needs yet another chance to strut its stuff.

It’s still going on today.

As for the Communist Party in America, most left-Progressives of the Antifa school regard the Party as an embarrassing sellout, wholly owned by the capitalist elite. And when we see their spokesmen appear on television every four years, they sound not unlike pundits we see on TV every night.

It would be nice if any article written about communism were purely retrospective. That, sadly, is not the case. There seem to be new brands of Marxian thought codified every few years, and still more versions of its Hegelian roots that take on ever more complex ideological iterations (the alt-right is an example).

Why do people become communists? Because human beings are capable of believing in all sorts of illusions, and we are capable of working long and hard to turn them into nightmares. Once we’ve invested the time and energy into something, however destructive, it can take a very long time to wake us up. It’s hard to think of a grander example of the sunk-cost fallacy.

AUTHOR

Jeffrey A. Tucker

Jeffrey Tucker is a former Director of Content for the Foundation for Economic Education.

EDITORS NOTE: This FEE column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.