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De Blasio Quotes Karl Marx’s Communist Manifesto in Discussion on Relationship with NYC Business Community

No pretense anymore. None. The Mayor of the capital of capitalism is imposing governance based on the most brutal, anti-human ideology in human history.

The Communists’ chief purpose is to destroy every form of independence—independent work, independent action, independent property, independent thought, an independent mind, or an independent man. Conformity, alikeness, servility, submission and obedience are necessary to establish a Communist slave-state. Ayn Rand

[…]

It is the Communists’ intention to make people think that personal success is somehow achieved at the expense of others and that every successful man has hurt somebody by becoming successful. It is the Communists’ aim to discourage all personal effort and to drive men into a hopeless, dispirited, gray herd of robots who have lost all personal ambition, who are easy to rule, willing to obey and willing to exist in selfless servitude to the State. Ayn Rand

Who will he quote next? Hitler?

De Blasio Quotes Marx’s Communist Manifesto in Discussion on Relationship with NYC Business Community

By: Zachary Evans,National Review, July 24, 2020

New York mayor Bill de Blasio quoted Karl Marx when outlining the relationship he wanted his office to have with the city’s business community, in an appearance on The Brian Lehrer Show on WNYC.

Host Brian Lehrer asked de Blasio how the mayor was approaching businesses for help with recovery from the coronavirus pandemic. Lehrer said that the mayor was not known for extensive outreach to the business community given his focus on issues of wealth inequality.

“There’s an underlying truth in the fact that my focus has not been on the business community and the elite,” de Blasio said. “I am tempted to borrow a quote from Karl Marx here…”

“They’ll love that on Wall Street,” Lehrer interjects.

“Yes they will,” de Blasio laughs. “There’s a famous quote that ‘the state is the executive committee of the bourgeoisie,’ and I use that openly to say no, I read that as a young person and thought, well, that’s not the way it’s supposed to be.”

The quote comes from the first chapter of Marx’s Communist Manifesto, in which Marx outlines his theory of the progressive advancement of the class of the bourgeoisie at the expense of the proletariat.

The mayor continued in the interview, “We need to work with the business community, we will work with the business community, but the city government represents the people, represents working people….A lot of folks have just sort of hit a wall when I say guys, you’re gonna have to pay more taxes, and we’re gonna have policies that favor working people more.”

De Blasio ended by saying he knows that many businesses want to help with a “comeback” for the city, and that his administration “really appreciate[s] that.”

The interview was not the first time de Blasio has quoted a communist figure. In 2019, the mayor apologized after quoting communist revolutionary Che Guevara at a rally of striking airport workers in Miami.

“I did not know the phrase I used in Miami today was associated with Che Guevara & I did not mean to offend anyone who heard it that way. I certainly apologize for not understanding that history,” de Blasio wrote on Twitter after backlash from Miami’s Latino community, many of whom are Cuban exiles.


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

The Left and the Rise of Marxism

Is it a case of ordained fate we cannot escape or is it that We the People are too dense to learn from our own mistakes? Paging through humanity’s history, time and again we find numerous instances of costly mistakes where people ignore facts and reason by entrusting their lives to a “savior.” And time and again, we have ended up paying the price for our folly. If we are not genetically doomed to make these ruinous mistakes—which I am certain we are not—then do we commit them out of wishful thinking, laziness, desperation, or some combination of the three?

To illustrate how mistake-prone we are, a few examples will suffice. In order to address economic disparity, a pivotal concern of humanity, Karl Marx showed up trumpeting his battle cry, “from each according to his ability, to each according to his needs.” Marx announced that the proletariat is the producer of wealth and that capitalists are leeches robbing them of the fruits of their labor.

In effect, Karl Marx originated the concept of class warfare, the poor against the rich. He urged the workers to rise, rid themselves of the rich and take full possession of their own self-produced goods. Humanity’s poor masses found their messiah in this ideologue, rallied behind him, and got to experience a Marxist paradise. While Marx’s summons was aimed at the laboring class of industrial Europe, the peasantry in both Russia and later in China enthusiastically answered his call. The results: many of the rich went to early graves, only to be replaced by a new class of overlord apparatchiks, and the poor continued to be poor. In the process, the disciples of Marx and Lenin such as Stalin and Mao subjected over 100 million to death, and untold millions suffered for many decades while the promised workers paradise never materialized.

Democrats and Incentive

Dis-incentive was the “Achilles Heel” of Marxism. Except for the ruling class, whether you worked hard or loafed, you basically got the same incentive under Marxism. The Democrats and Biden basically want to transform America to cultural-Marxism: a failed economic philosophy, in a poorly disguised form that this Party has been relentlessly pushing throughout the ages. Democrats’ redistribution of wealth does nothing but dis-incentivize an individual’s prime motive force “self-exertion” for “self-reward.” Democrats feel the rich have too much and the poor should simply get a much bigger share of what the rich have. If that is not the exact Marxist failed philosophy, then what is it?

While Marx’s workers’ paradise ideal continued to struggle, and kept failing miserably to deliver its promises, its offshoots such as European Socialism and now American Redistributionism under Democratic leadership are still aims to create a society where those who succeed in generating wealth turn over the major share of their earnings to those who do not.

Dis-incentivizing individual exertion through confiscatory taxes is the surest way to reduce the overall wealth of any society. The rich resort to strategies that shelter their wealth, become discouraged in investing their funds, and then the overall wealth of the society declines. It is investment by those who have funds that creates wealth and jobs. And it is jobs that are the best way to help the have-nots, not government handouts.

In order to address economic issues effectively, government policies should facilitate all individuals and companies to create more wealth, not penalize those who have managed to create and acquire wealth by over-regulation and excessive taxation. The last thing any government should do is to use the ineffective deadly weapon of classism, pitting the poor against the rich.

Hitlerian ‘Salvation’

Not long after the launch of Marxism, another “savior,” by the name of Adolph Hitler, rose to power on the promise of fixing humanity’s economic and other problems at its very foundation based on nationalism. Specifically, he proposed ridding the world of its burden of undesirables and unfit, with Jews on top of his list. Marx’s trump “card” was class warfare. Hitler flashed the ethnic-race card. He claimed that the Aryan race was the cream of humanity’s crop that brought nothing but good to the table, while Semitic, black and yellow people represented exploiters and aberrations to be eliminated. For good measure, he lumped in the mentally challenged, homosexuals and the physically handicapped as humanity’s misfits as well to be rid of.

Picking a scapegoat has always worked magic over the millennia, and even Hitler’s syphilitic brain recognized its value for his campaign of mass genocide. The results: Millions died, among them some of mankind’s best-educated and productive Jews. Hitlerism and Communism, for all intents and purposes, either died or went on life support, providing ample opportunities for other saviors.

Islam to the Rescue

In no time at all Islam, long fractured, lethargic and dormant, found a new vitality under the leadership of the Ayatollah Khomeini of Iran, who raised the Black Standard and promised Allah’s paradise to the totality of mankind for the simple price of accepting his Shiite brand of Islam. A naïve dreamer of an American President, Jimmy Carter, hailed Khomeini as a saint-savior, an answer to a prayer, so to speak. Not to be left out, shortly after the Shiite Khomeini’s lightning success in Iran that deposed the Shah and established the Islamic Republic, a Sunni Muslim “Osama Bin Laden” launched his campaign of bringing about a worldwide Caliphate, as the sure cure for humanity’s ills.

In contrast to Marx’s class warfare and Hitler’s ethnic-race rallying cries, Khomeini and Bin Laden hoisted the ever-effective battle call of religion. The very concept of religion that stands for uniting people has been subverted, time and again, by clever and devious opportunists as means of pitting people against each other.

America at a Critical Point

The great nation of all nations, America, is at a critical point and crossroads. The current uprising under the direction of George Soros/Obama and the DNC has been abysmal in all areas vital to our nation. Islamist jihadists are on the march and democracy is in retreat. The Islamic Republic of Iran is rapidly moving toward acquiring nuclear weapon capability.

Domestically, our house is in shambles. The national debt is staggering. If Biden is elected, the nation’s debt will exceed that of our obligation under all other previous administrations combined. Our children and grandchildren will have to service this debt at economically soaring rates. Even today, forty cents of the Federal tax dollar go to servicing the loans—much of it to China and foreign entities.

It is imperative that we, as a nation, live within our means, just like families do. In like manner that families should cut back on everything they can, in order to live within their means, the Federal Government needs do the same. It must reduce the size of government and eliminate hundreds of bureaucracies that are redundant or completely useless as President Trump has done. We, as responsible citizens, must make sure that President Trump is reelected.

If the Democrats take over the White House, America, as we know it, will not be recognizable.

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What the Nazis Borrowed from Marx

Polylogism is the replacement of reasoning and science by superstitions. It is the characteristic mentality of an age of chaos. Ludwig von Mises

The Nazis did not invent polylogism. They only developed their own brand.


Image credit: Flicker-Recuerdos de Pandora | CC BY 2.0

Until the middle of the 19th century no one ventured to dispute the fact that the logical structure of mind is unchangeable and common to all human beings. All human interrelations are based on this assumption of a uniform logical structure. We can speak to each other only because we can appeal to something common to all of us, namely, the logical structure of reason. Some men can think deeper and more refined thoughts than others. There are men who unfortunately cannot grasp a process of inference in long chains of deductive reasoning. But as far as a man is able to think and to follow a process of discursive thought, he always clings to the same ultimate principles of reasoning that are applied by all other men. There are people who cannot count further than three; but their counting, as far as it goes, does not differ from that of Gauss or Laplace. No historian or traveler has ever brought us any knowledge of people for whom a and non-a were identical, or who could not grasp the difference between affirmation and negation. Daily, it is true, people violate logical principles in reasoning. But whoever examines their inferences competently can uncover their errors.

Because everyone takes these facts to be unquestionable, men enter into discussions; they speak to each other; they write letters and books; they try to prove or to disprove. Social and intellectual cooperation between men would be impossible if this were not so. Our minds cannot even consistently imagine a world peopled by men of different logical structures or a logical structure different from our own.

Yet, in the course of the 19th century this undeniable fact has been contested. Marx and the Marxians, foremost among them the “proletarian philosopher” Dietzgen, taught that thought is determined by the thinker’s class position. What thinking produces is not truth but “ideologies.” This word means, in the context of Marxian philosophy, a disguise of the selfish interest of the social class to which the thinking individual is attached. It is therefore useless to discuss anything with people of another social class. Ideologies do not need to be refuted by discursive reasoning; they must be unmasked by denouncing the class position, the social background, of their authors. Thus Marxians do not discuss the merits of physical theories; they merely uncover the “bourgeois” origin of the physicists.

The Marxians have resorted to polylogism because they could not refute by logical methods the theories developed by “bourgeois” economics, or the inferences drawn from these theories demonstrating the impracticability of socialism. As they could not rationally demonstrate the soundness of their own ideas or the unsoundness of their adversaries’ ideas, they have denounced the accepted logical methods. The success of this Marxian stratagem was unprecedented. It has rendered proof against any reasonable criticism all the absurdities of Marxian would-be economics and would-be sociology. Only by the logical tricks of polylogism could etatism gain a hold on the modern mind.

Polylogism is so inherently nonsensical that it cannot be carried consistently to its ultimate logical consequences. No Marxian was bold enough to draw all the conclusions that his own epistemological viewpoint would require. The principle of polylogism would lead to the inference that Marxian teachings also are not objectively true but are only “ideological” statements. But the Marxians deny it. They claim for their own doctrines the character of absolute truth. Thus Dietzgen teaches that “the ideas of proletarian logic are not party ideas but the outcome of logic pure and simple.” The proletarian logic is not “ideology” but absolute logic. Present-day Marxians, who label their teachings the sociology of knowledge, give proof of the same inconsistency. One of their champions, Professor Mannheim, tries to demonstrate that there exists a group of men, the “unattached intellectuals,” who are equipped with the gift of grasping truth without falling prey to ideological errors. Of course, Professor Mannheim is convinced that he is the foremost of these “unattached intellectuals.” You simply cannot refute him. If you disagree with him, you only prove thereby that you yourself are not one of this elite of “unattached intellectuals” and that your utterances are ideological nonsense.

The German nationalists had to face precisely the same problem as the Marxians. They also could neither demonstrate the correctness of their own statements nor disprove the theories of economics and praxeology. Thus they took shelter under the roof of polylogism, prepared for them by the Marxians. Of course, they concocted their own brand of polylogism. The logical structure of mind, they say, is different with different nations and races. Every race or nation has its own logic and therefore its own economics, mathematics, physics, and so on. But, no less inconsistently than Professor Mannheim, Professor Tirala, his counterpart as champion of Aryan epistemology, declares that the only true, correct, and perennial logic and science are those of the Aryans. In the eyes of the Marxians Ricardo, Freud, Bergson, and Einstein are wrong because they are bourgeois; in the eyes of the Nazis they are wrong because they are Jews. One of the foremost goals of the Nazis is to free the Aryan soul from the pollution of the Western philosophies of Descartes, Hume, and John Stuart Mill. They are in search of arteigen German science, that is, of a science adequate to the racial character of the Germans.

We may reasonably assume as hypothesis that man’s mental abilities are the outcome of his bodily features. Of course, we cannot demonstrate the correctness of this hypothesis, but neither is it possible to demonstrate the correctness of the opposite view as expressed in the theological hypothesis. We are forced to recognize that we do not know how out of physiological processes thoughts result. We have some vague notions of the detrimental effects produced by traumatic or other damage inflicted on certain bodily organs; we know that such damage may restrict or completely destroy the mental abilities and functions of men. But that is all. It would be no less than insolent humbug to assert that the natural sciences provide us with any information concerning the alleged diversity of the logical structure of mind. Polylogism cannot be derived from physiology or anatomy or any other of the natural sciences.

Neither Marxian nor Nazi polylogism ever went further than to declare that the logical structure of mind is different with various classes or races. They never ventured to demonstrate precisely in what the logic of the proletarians differs from the logic of the bourgeois, or in what the logic of the Aryans differs from the logic of the Jews or the British. It is not enough to reject wholesale the Ricardian theory of comparative cost or the Einstein theory of relativity by unmasking the alleged racial background of their authors. What is wanted is first to develop a system of Aryan logic different from non-Aryan logic. Then it would be necessary to examine point by point these two contested theories and to show where in their reasoning inferences are made which—although correct from the viewpoint of non-Aryan logic—are invalid from the viewpoint of Aryan logic. And, finally, it should be explained what kind of conclusions the replacement of the non-Aryan inferences by the correct Aryan inferences must lead to. But all this never has been and never can be ventured by anybody. The garrulous champion of racism and Aryan polylogism, Professor Tirala, does not say a word about the difference between Aryan and non-Aryan logic. Polylogism, whether Marxian or Aryan, or whatever, has never entered into details.

Polylogism has a peculiar method of dealing with dissenting views. If its supporters fail to unmask the background of an opponent, they simply brand him a traitor. Both Marxians and Nazis know only two categories of adversaries. The aliens—whether members of a nonproletarian class or of a non-Aryan race—are wrong because they are aliens; the opponents of proletarian or Aryan origin are wrong because they are traitors. Thus they lightly dispose of the unpleasant fact that there is dissension among the members of what they call their own class or race.

The Nazis contrast German economics with Jewish and Anglo-Saxon economics. But what they call German economics differs not at all from some trends in foreign economics. It developed out of the teachings of the Genevese Sismondi and of the French and British socialists. Some of the older representatives of this alleged German economics merely imported foreign thought into Germany. Frederick List brought the ideas of Alexander Hamilton to Germany, Hildebrand and Brentano brought the ideas of early British socialism. Arteigen German economics is almost identical with contemporary trends in other countries, e.g., with American Institutionalism.

On the other hand, what the Nazis call Western economics and therefore artfremd is to a great extent an achievement of men to whom even the Nazis cannot deny the term German. Nazi economists wasted much time in searching the genealogical tree of Carl Menger for Jewish ancestors; they did not succeed. It is nonsensical to explain the conflict between economic theory, on the one hand, and Institutionalism and historical empiricism, on the other hand, as a racial or national conflict.

Polylogism is not a philosophy or an epistemological theory. It is an attitude of narrow-minded fanatics, who cannot imagine that anybody could be more reasonable or more clever than they themselves. Nor is polylogism scientific. It is rather the replacement of reasoning and science by superstitions. It is the characteristic mentality of an age of chaos.

This article was reprinted from the Mises Institute.

COLUMN BY

Ludwig von Mises

Ludwig von Mises

Ludwig von Mises (1881-1973) taught in Vienna and New York and served as a close adviser to the Foundation for Economic Education. He is considered the leading theorist of the Austrian School of the 20th century. 

EDITORS NOTE: This FEE column with images is republished with permission.

Karl Marx’s Flight from Reality by Richard M. Ebeling

Though it may seem strange, Karl Marx was not always a communist. As late as 1842, when Marx was in his mid-20s, he actually said he opposed any attempt to establish a communist system. In October 1842, he became editor of the Rheinische Zeitung [the Rhineland Times], and wrote in an editorial:

The Rheinische Zeitung … does not admit that communist ideas in their present form possess even theoretical reality, and therefore can still less desire their practical realization, or even consider it possible.

In 1843, Marx was forced to resign his editorship because of political pressure from the Prussian government and ended up moving to Paris. It was in Paris that he met his future lifelong collaborator, Friedrich Engels (who already was a socialist), and began his deeper study of socialism and communism, leading to his full “conversion” to the collectivist ideal.

Feuerbach and the Worship of Man Perfected

From his student days in Berlin, two German philosophers left their imprint upon Marx: George Hegel (1770-1831) and Ludwig Feuerbach (1804-1872). From Hegel, Marx learned the theory of “dialectics” and the idea of historical progress to universal improvement. From Feuerbach, Marx accepted the idea of man “perfected.” Feuerbach had argued that rather than worshiping a non-existing supernatural being – God – man should worship himself.

The “true” religion of the future should, therefore, be the Worship of Mankind, and that man “perfected” would be changed from a being focused on and guided by his own self-interest to one who was totally altruistic, that is, concerned only with the betterment of and service to Mankind as a whole, rather than only himself.

Marx took Feuerbach’s notion of man “perfected” and developed what he considered to be the essential characteristics of such a developed human nature. There were three elements to such a perfected human being, Marx argued:First, the Potential for “Autonomous Action.” This is action undertaken by a man only out of desire or enjoyment, not out of necessity. If a man works at a blacksmith’s forge out of a desire to creatively exercise his faculties in molding metal into some artistic form, this is free or “autonomous action.” If a man works at the forge because he will starve unless he makes a plow to plant a crop, he is acting under a “compulsion” or a “constraint.”

Second, the Potential for “Societal Orientation.” Only man, Marx argued, can reflect on and direct his conscious actions to the improvement the “community” of which he is a part, and which nourishes his own capacity for personal development. When man associates with others only out of self-interest, he denies his true “social” self. Thus, egoism is “unworthy” of a developed human being.

And, third, the Potential for “Aesthetic Appreciation.” This is when man values things only for themselves; for example, “nature for nature’s sake,” or “art for art’s sake.” To view things, Marx claimed, only from the perspective of how something might be used to improve an individual’s personal circumstance is a debasement of the “truly” aesthetic value in things.

Capitalism Keeps Man from Perfection

Feuerbach believed man was “alienated” from himself when he was not “other-oriented.” To change from self-interest to altruism was mostly a state of mind that man could change within himself, Feuerbach argued. Marx insisted that the problem of “alienation” was not due to a person’s “state of mind,” but was conditioned by the “objective” institutional circumstances under which men lived. That is, the political, social, and economic institutions made man what he is. Change the social order, and man would be changed. “Capitalism,” Marx declared, was the source of man’s alienation from his “true” self and his human potential.

How did this “alienation” manifest itself?

Capitalism, Marx declared, was the source of man’s alienation from his “true” self and his human potential.

First, there is the Stifling of Autonomous Action. In the marketplace, forces “outside” the control of the individual determine what is produced and how it is produced. The individual “reacts” to the market, he does not control it. Thus, market forces are external constraints on man. He responds to the market out of “necessity,” not out of free desire.Furthermore, to enhance production and productivity, man is “forced” to participate in a division of labor to earn a living that makes him an “appendage” to a machine, a “slave” to the machines owned by the “capitalists” for whom he is “compelled” to work.

Second, there is Diminished Other-Orientedness. In the market, the individual sees others only as a means to his material ends; he trades with others to get what he wants from others, merely in pursuit of his own self-interest. Work is not considered a communal “cooperative” process, but an antagonistic relationship between what the individual wants and what is wanted by the one with whom he trades.

Third, there is Limited Aesthetic Appreciation. In the market, people see nature, resources, and the creations of man not as things to be intrinsically valued in themselves, but as marketable objects – as means – to personal ends. Acquisition of things – possessiveness – becomes the primary goal of economic activity for making a living.

Communism’s Liberation of Constrained Man

Communism, through collective planning, would make work an “autonomous” act, rather than “constrained action.” When democratically regulated by the workers as a whole, Marx asserted, collective planning would emerge from the desires of all the members of society as their communal choice and consent. It would be consciously planned and directed through the participation of all the members of society, thus generating an “other-oriented” sense of a “common good” for which all worked.

No one would be forced and constrained to do what another made them do in the division of labor anymore. Indeed, communism would free men from the “tyranny” of specialization. In Marx’s words, from The German Ideology (1845),

In communist society, where nobody has one exclusive sphere of activity but each can become accomplished in any branch he wishes, society regulates the general production and thus makes it possible for me to do one thing today and another tomorrow; to hunt in the morning, fish in the afternoon, rear cattle in the evening, criticize after dinner, just as I have a mind.

In this new communist world, no one will have to work at anything he did not like or want to do. In addition, under communal planning, production would rise to such a height of productivity that the work day would be shortened to the point that each person’s time would be free to do only the things he enjoyed doing.

Selfishness would be eliminated as a human trait, and altruism would become the dominant trait.

Communism would also enhance social consciousness and other-orientedness. All that was communally produced would be distributed on the basis of “need” or “want.” No longer would scarcity impose constraints on man’s desires. As a result, the urge for “possessiveness” and acquisition of “things” would diminish and finally disappear. Selfishness would be eliminated as a human trait.Others would no longer be viewed as “competitors” for scarce things, but as social collaborators for attaining “higher” ends of social importance. Altruism would become the dominant trait in man.

In addition, communism would result in the flowering of aesthetic appreciation.

Man would not create so he could earn a living, but for the pleasure of the activity itself. Work would not be a source of “alienation” but an activity reflecting the free – the “autonomous” – desires of man for the “beautiful.”

Communism would liberate man in all ways and all things, said Marx:

With a communist organization of society, there disappears the subordination … of the individual to some definite art, making him exclusively a painter, a sculptor, etc. … In a communist society, there are no longer painters, but only people who engage in painting among other activities.

With the end of capitalism and the arrival of communism, there would come a heaven on earth. There would be enough of everything for all. Man would be freed from working for survival, he would be unchained from the division of labor, he would be liberated to follow whatever gave his heart pleasure. With Communism, man becomes like God – free and powerful to do whatever he wants.

Marx’s Denial of Self-Oriented Human Nature

Let me suggest that what Marx was objecting to – revolting against – was human nature and the existence of scarcity. Man can never escape from or get outside of being an individual “ego.” We exist as individual human beings; we think, remember, imagine, choose, and act as distinct and unique individual men and women.

Our experiences are our experiences; our thoughts and beliefs are our reflections and ideas; our judgments and valuations are our estimates and rankings of things of importance to us. Even when we try to put ourselves in another person’s shoes, to try to sympathize, empathize, and understand the meanings, experiences, and actions of others, it is from our perspective and state of mind that we do so.It is the individuality of the person in these and other facets of our distinct nature and character as conscious, conceptualizing creatures that make for the unique differences and diversities of our minds as self-oriented human beings. This is the source of the creativity and plethora of possibilities that can and have emerged from seeing the world in the distinct and different ways of self-oriented and self-experiencing people when pursuing their own improvement. As they consider what is most advantageous for themselves and others they “selfishly” care about, they support and encourage an institutional setting of peaceful and voluntary market association.

Marx’s Denial of the Reality of Scarcity

Marx also objects to the reality of the necessity to have to produce in order to consume and to have to view one’s own labor as a means to various ends, rather than simply being somehow provided with all that we want and our labor being “free” to be used as a pleasurable end in itself.

Likewise, he revolts against men viewing each other as a means to their respective desired ends rather than as purely human relationships, a “club” in which all get together and freely associate for “good times” with no concern for how or who provides the things without which good times cannot occur.

Nor can he abide men looking upon nature and man-made objects as the means or tools of producing the necessities, amenities, and luxuries of life, with the assignment of a “money value” to a house, a work of art, a waterfall, or a sculpture being “dehumanizing” for Marx.

However, the only reason such things are given values by people in society is that they are wanted but also scarce and because the means to achieve them are scarce as well. As a consequence, we must decide what we consider to be more or less valuable and important to us since all that we would like to have cannot be simultaneously fulfilled at the same time.

Marx’s hatred for the division of labor is an outgrowth of this worldview. Man is seen as somehow less than whole by specializing in a task and selling both his labor and his fraction of the total output to achieve the ends and goals he considers more important than what he has to give up in return.

Marx’s Misconception of Action and Choice

The entire Marxian conception of man, society, and happiness can be conceived, therefore, as a flight from reality. It can be seen in Marx’s distinction between “autonomous action” and capitalist “choices.”

“Action” is, in fact, nothing more than choice manifested: we undertake courses of action only after we have decided what it is we wish to do. That is, we decide which among the alternatives available to us we shall try to bring about, and which shall be set aside for a day or forever because not everything we desire can be had, due to the constraints of nature and the existence of other human beings.

Marx talks of people fishing in the morning and hunting in the afternoon – does that not mean that the person’s time is scarce? Is he not “frustrated” that he cannot do both at the same time, or be in two places at once?

“Action” is, in fact, nothing more than choice manifested.

If every man is to be “autonomously free” to hunt and fish whenever and to whatever extent he desires, what happens when the various members of the community wish to kill the forest animals or catch the fish at such a rate that they are threatened with extinction? Or what if several people all want to fish from the same place along the river or lake bank at the same time, or from the same “cover” position while out hunting?Marx might say that a “societal orientation” on the part of everyone would result in some form of “comradely” compromise. But is that not just other language for “mutual agreements,” “trade-offs,” and “exchanges” concerning the use and disposal of scarce resources – the disposition of the communal property rights among the members of society?

There is no certainty that all of the members of such a society will always like the communally agreed-upon outcomes, with some of them considering themselves “exploited” for the benefit of others who have out-voted them. And, therefore, they may be “alienated” from their fellow men and from nature even in the communist paradise to come.

Nor can there simply be the idea of art for art’s sake or nature for nature’s sake.

Resources for art and gifts of nature (unless cultivated to expand them) are always limited. The use of forests for primitive contemplation versus industrial use versus residential housing would still have to be made in Marx’s magical communist society. And, certainly, not everyone in the bright, beautiful communist society may agree or like the decisions that a majority of others in the blissful societal commune make about such things.

The paint for the artist’s pallet is not in infinite supply, so some art would have to be forgone so other art might be pursued; similarly with the ingredients going into the manufacture of paints versus being used for other things. To assume that men would never conflict over how to dispose of these things is to escape into a complete fantasyland.

Also, it is a physical and psychological fact that men differ in their relative capacities and inclinations in terms of various tasks needing to be performed. It is a physical and psychological fact that men tend to be more productive when they specialize in a small range of tasks as opposed to trying to be a “jack-of-all-trades.”

The Reality of Communism Versus the Reality of Capitalism

As a result, the division of labor raises both the productivity and the total production of a community of men, standards of living rise, leisure time can be expanded, and more variety and quality of goods can be produced.

Indeed, it has been free market capitalism that has provided humanity over the last 200 years with that actual relative horn-of-plenty wherever a fairly free rein has existed for self-interested individual action in pursuit of profit in associative relationships of specialization based on the peaceful use of private property.

Capitalism has been the great liberator of ever more of mankind from poverty, want, and worry. It has freed people from the hardship and drudgery of often life-threatening forms of work. The free market has shortened the hours of work needed to generate levels of material and cultural comfort for a growing number of people and provided the longer, healthier lives and increased leisure time for people to enjoy the wealth that economic freedom has made possible.The “de-alienation” of man from his everyday existence, in the sense that Marx talked about it, has also, in fact, been brought about through the achievements of capitalism. It has relieved more and more of mankind from the concerns of mere survival and subsistence through the capital accumulation and profit-oriented production that has raised the productivity of all those who work and expanded the available supply of useful goods and services. The free market has enabled people to have the means to fulfill more of the enjoyments and meanings of life as ends in themselves.

Furthermore, as Austrian economist F. A. Hayek and others have pointed out, the advantage of the free market system is precisely that it does not require all of the members of the society to agree upon and share the same hierarchy of goals, ends, and values. Each individual, under competitive capitalism, is at liberty to select and follow their own purposes and pursue happiness in their own way. Using each other as the voluntary means to their respective ends in the arena of peaceful market exchange allows a much larger diversity of outcomes reflecting differences among people than if one central plan needs to imposed on all in the name of the interests of a collectivist community as a whole.

Marx’s flight from reality, on the other hand, was the wish to have everything capitalism, the division of labor, and competitive exchange can produce, but without the cost of work, discipline, specialization, and selecting among alternatives. It is like the cry of the child who refuses to accept the fact that he cannot have everything he wants, right there and then and, instead, expects someone or something to provide it to him and everyone else in a blissful fairyland of material plentitude.

Richard M. Ebeling

Richard M. Ebeling

Richard M. Ebeling is BB&T Distinguished Professor of Ethics and Free Enterprise Leadership at The Citadel in Charleston, South Carolina. He was president of the Foundation for Economic Education (FEE) from 2003 to 2008.

Progressivism’s Dark Side by George J. Marlin

George J. Marlin writes about the shadows that envelope Progressivism: a legacy of elitist eugenics and racism.

In early March, I had the privilege of attending the oral arguments in Whole Woman’s Health v. Cole at the U.S. Supreme Court. It was both an extraordinary and eerie experience.

The eight justices questioned Texas Solicitor General Scott Keller and pro-abortion advocate Stephanie Toti about a 2013 Texas law – passed in response to the gruesome Gosnell revelations and trial in Philadelphia – which requires abortion doctors to have admitting privileges at hospitals within a thirty mile radius of the place at which the abortion is being performed.

I was seated in one of the seven guest rows, where most attendees were pro-abortion. To my left: Planned Parenthood C.E.O. Cecile Richards. Fives minutes before the justices took their seats, President Obama’s top aide, Valerie Jarrett, came in and sat down in front of me.

President Woodrow Wilson

The issue before the Court was whether the Texas law imposes “undue burden” on women seeking abortions. The progressive justices’ cross-examinations were very clinical. In fact, I have never heard the word “abortion” used so often in such a detached manner.

For instance, when Solicitor General Keller pointed out that the law would save the lives of victims of botched abortions, Justice Stephen Breyer dismissed the argument as immaterial because there were only 200 such instances out of Texas’ 70,000 abortions per year.

Justice Sonia Sotomayor snapped at Keller, asking sarcastically, “The slightest benefit is enough to burden the lives of a million women. That’s your point?” In other words, all lives don’t matter.

By the end of this morbid session, I thought I was in a eugenics court. Then it dawned on me, I shouldn’t be surprised. After all, the modern Progressive movement has been dominated by a self-anointed elite, like several of the justices, who had contempt for the common people. In the early 20th century, they even promoted social and economic policies driven by anti-Catholic and anti-Semitic impulses.

Click here to read the rest of Mr. Marlin’s column . . .

What Marx Got Right about Redistribution – That John Stuart Mill Got Wrong by Alan Reynolds

The idea that government could redistribute income willy-nilly with impunity did not originate with Senator Bernie Sanders. On the contrary, it may have begun with two of the most famous 19th century economists, David Ricardo and John Stuart Mill. Karl Marx, on the other side, found the idea preposterous, calling it “vulgar socialism.”

Mill wrote,

The laws and conditions of the production of wealth partake of the character of physical truths. There is nothing optional or arbitrary about them. … It is not so with the Distribution of Wealth. That is a matter of human institution only. The things once there, mankind, individually, can do with them as they like.

Mill’s distinction between production and distribution appears to encourage the view that any sort of government intervention in distribution is utterly harmless — a free lunch. But redistribution aims to take money from people who earned it and give it to those who did not. And that, of course, has adverse effects on the incentives of those who receive the government’s benefits and on taxpayers who finance those benefits.

David Ricardo had earlier made the identical mistake. In his 1936 book The Good Society (p. 196), Walter Lippmann criticized Ricardo as being “not concerned with the increase of wealth, for wealth was increasing and the economists did not need to worry about that.”

But Ricardo saw income distribution as an interesting issue of political economy and “set out to ascertain ‘the laws which determine the division of the produce of industry among the classes who concur in its formation.’

Lippmann wisely argued that, “separating the production of wealth from the distribution of wealth” was “almost certainly an error. For the amount of wealth which is available for distribution cannot in fact be separated from the proportions in which it is distributed. … Moreover, the proportion in which wealth is distributed must have an effect on the amount produced.”

The third classical economist to address this issue was Karl Marx. There were many fatal flaws in Marxism, including the whole notion that a society is divided into two armies — workers and capitalists. Late in his career, however, Marx wrote a fascinating 1875 letter to his allies in the German Social Democratic movement criticizing a redistributionist scheme he found unworkable.

In this famous “Critique of the Gotha Program,” Marx was highly critical of “vulgar socialism” and considered the whole notion of “fair distribution” to be “obsolete verbal rubbish.” In response to the Gotha’s program claim that society’s production should be equally distributed to all, Marx asked,

To those who do not work as well? … But one man is superior to another physically or mentally and so supplies more labor in the same time, or can labor for a longer time. … This equal right is an unequal right for unequal labor… It is, therefore, a right to inequality.

Yet Marx offered a glimmer of utopian hope about the future in which things would become so abundant that distribution would no longer be a matter of concern:

In a higher phase of communist society … after the productive forces have also increased with the all-around development of the individual, and all the springs of cooperative wealth flow more abundantly — only then can the narrow horizon of bourgeois right be crossed in its entirety and society inscribe on its banner: From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs!

That was not a prescription but a warning: For the foreseeable future Marx knew nothing would work without work incentives. If income were equally distributed to “those who do not work,” why would anyone work?

Contemporary public economics — “optimal tax theory” and the newest of the “new welfare economics” — also teaches that to tax a man “according to his abilities” would give able men a very strong incentive to use their skills to hide their earnings (and therefore their abilities) from tax collectors. This predictable response to tax penalties on high earnings is confirmed by economic research on the elasticity of taxable income.

Distributing government spending “to each according to his needs” must likewise give potential recipients a strong incentive to exaggerate their needs. People who got caught doing that used to be called “welfare cheats” and considerable cheating still goes on in food stamps, Medicaid, etc. The Earned Income Tax Credit, for example, gives low-income working people an extra incentive to not report cash income from tips, casual labor or illicit activities.

In The Undercover Economist, Tim Harford rightly notes that “when economists say the economy is inefficient, they mean there’s a way to make somebody better off without harming anybody else” (called “Pareto optimality”). But argues that Nobel Laureate Kenneth Arrow figured out a way to efficiently redistribute income with “appropriate lump-sum taxes and subsidies that puts everyone on equal footing.” As Harford says, “a lump-sum tax doesn’t affect anybody’s behavior because there’s nothing you can do to avoid it.”

Unfortunately, Harford says “an example of a lump-sum redistribution would be to give eight hundred dollars to everybody whose name starts with H.” That simply shows that if the subsidies were not ridiculously random then the subsidies will affect behavior and will not be lump-sum. The government could collect a lump-sum tax of $800 from every adult and then send a lump-sum subsidy of $800 to every adult with no net effect, for example, but why do that? If the government tried to tax people on the basis of abilities or to subsidize on the basis of needs, even Marx knew that would have a terrible effect on incentives.

The whole idea was curtly dismissed by another Nobel Laureate, Joseph Stiglitz, in his 1994 book Whither Socialism? (p. 46): “The ‘old new welfare economics’ assumed that lump-sum redistributions were possible,” wrote Stiglitz; “The ‘new new welfare economics’ recognizes the limitations on the government’s information.”

The reason governments cannot simply take money from some people according to how able they are, and give it to others according to how needy they are, is because people who were aware of that plan would not be foolish enough to accurately reveal their abilities and needs.

Actual taxes and transfer payment distort behavior in ways that undermine economic progress and commonly produce results (such as trapping people in poverty) that are the opposite of their stated intent.

This post first appeared at Cato.org.

Alan ReynoldsAlan Reynolds

Alan Reynolds is one of the original supply-side economists. He is Senior Fellow at the Cato Institute and was formerly Director of Economic Research at the Hudson Institute.

VIDEO: INFILTRATION — Thousands of young Communists have infiltrated Catholic seminaries

TRANSCRIPT:

During the early years of Communism in the 1920s and 30s, the evil was being spread worldwide as the Blessed Mother had predicted at Fatima in 1917. Communist parties were being formed in various European countries and in American cities as well. They were already attempting to upset the political and cultural order.

alice_von_hildebrand-255x362

Alice von Hildebrand

But what only a very small number of people knew was that the top dogs of Communism had already released the hounds on the Church. The carefully organized plan was to recruit young men who were loyal Communists and get them placed in seminaries. This was carried out by various agents during the 1920s and 30s.

Fast forward 30 years to the 1960s, and the fruits were beginning to be seen. Learned, dedicated, faithful men and women in the Church were looking around and fretting, not sure from what framework they should understand the demolition of the Faith they were witnessing. At one point, Pope Paul VI even said that it appeared the Church was in auto-demolition.

One of those deeply distressed was a refugee from Hitler’s Germany, the brilliant theologian Dietrich von Hildebrand. He and his wife Alice were sitting down one day with a friend, a woman by the name of Bella Dodd. Bella Dodd had been received back into the Catholic Church by Abp. Fulton Sheen in April of 1952.

This particular day, von Hildebrand was lamenting the state of affairs in the Church and said “It seems like the Church has been infiltrated.” To the shock of both Dietrich and Alice, Bella Dodd, former Communist agent, confessed that it had been infiltrated — and she had been one of the Communists ordered to organize it.

Read more.

Please watch this excerpt of the interview with Dr. Alice von Hildebrand:

RELATED ARTICLE: Politics and Pope Francis: What is the role of the Catholic Church and the State?

EDITORS NOTE: The Vortex has more of their interview with Dr. von Hildebrand available for Premium viewers. They are offering a 15-day free trial. Please consider signing, up at no cost, and watch the whole von Hildebrand interview. You may also explore all the other programs — hundreds of hours.

Notorious Pro-Bernie Sanders PAC Strikes Back with Political Satire Comic Series

bernie sanders comic book coverWASHINGTON, D.C. /PRNewswire/ – Hands down Democratic Presidential Candidate Bernie Sanders is leading in the Iowa and New Hampshire polls, which may have Hillary Clinton’s team on the edge of their seat. Nonetheless, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) remains abundant with support from a political committee Americans Socially United that started this time a year ago before he announced his official candidacy for the presidential race.

Americans Socially United Director Cary Lee Peterson talks with PoliWatch about 2016 PAC activities leading to Primary Election.

The pro-Sanders PAC had scrutiny for its stance in September from a political journalist, which led to a convoluted state of opinion about the PAC and why it chose to support Bernie Sanders’ run for presidency. They’ve since restructured and are aiming back at the media with a political satire comic placed on a digital billboard in New York Times Square, a secondary jab since their first media billboard blitz in New York Times Square last April.

Americans Socially United chief director Cary Lee Peterson comments, “We were there this time a year ago. We’re still here now. You don’t like it, go start your own PAC or join a campaign committee of another candidate; we’re here and going nowhere.”

The billboard ad displays a character that portrays Bernie Sanders as a super hero flying into the scene amongst other 2016 presidential candidates with a caption that says ‘I see through you’. Ironically this billboard ad holds a handful of hidden messages that only the creators can describe.

PoliWatch spoke with pro-Bernie Sanders billboard comic artist Harrison Wood (41), currently a Las Vegas radio personality and freelancer of independent comic book series Thunder Frogs, who stated “I like what he [Bernie Sanders] stands for and I am happy to contribute to the 2016 presidential election campaigns. Every candidate out there deserves an opportunity to prove themselves and I’m glad I can use my talent to be involved in some way.”

ASU director Cary Peterson tells PoliWatch that the comic billboard ad is only the beginning of a series of political satire stokes at 2016 U.S. presidential candidates. At the end of the day the art of the pen is mightier than the sword.

‘Capitalism’ Is the Wrong Word by Steven Horwitz

We Shouldn’t Use a Term Coined by the System’s Enemies!

Wouldn’t it be nice if we could simply invent new terms to replace the words that seem to cause more heat than light? For example, I have written before of my qualms about using the word capitalism to describe the free-market economy. The word was coined by capitalism’s enemies to describe the system that they rejected.

Red Plenty, a marvelous book by Francis Spufford, offers an important perspective on our discussion of terms. The book is a must-read for fans of free markets. It combines elements from the actual history of the use of mathematics to try to plan the Soviet economy, fictional dialogue and some fictional characters, and Spufford’s excellent understanding of the economics of capitalism and socialism to create an incredibly readable account of the attempt to engineer a world of abundance in the former Soviet Union.

In the senior seminar I teach, we recently read a section of the book that deals with how the Soviet planning process actually worked. That section got me thinking about the terms capitalism and socialism again. The term capitalism suggests a system built around capital and its interests, while the word socialism suggests one built around society and its interests. Notice how these connotations beg some questions from the start.

Is it really true, for example, that capitalism is centered around capital and its interests? Is it really capitalists who benefit the most from capitalism? And on the other side: have existing socialist economies ever served the interests of society as a whole? Could socialism, in theory, do so? Do both of these names make assumptions about each of the two types of economies that reflect the biases of capitalism’s critics and socialism’s defenders?

Of course, capital does play a crucial role in capitalism. The private ownership of capital (the means of production) is a defining characteristic of a free-market economy, especially in comparison to socialism. And the ability to engage in economic calculation provided by the money prices of the market is crucial for the owners of capital to know how best to deploy it. So in those senses, capitalism is about capital.

But notice that nowhere in the previous paragraph is it claimed that the primary beneficiaries of capitalism are the capitalists! What is missing is an answer to the question of why the capitalists continually have to figure out how best to deploy their capital. The answer is because they are constantly trying to provide what consumers want using the least valuable resources possible.

Sure, the capitalists reap profits by doing so. But those profits result from the mutually beneficial exchanges capitalists have with consumers.

The main beneficiaries from capitalism are not the capitalists, but all of us in our role as consumers. Competition among the owners of private capital is all about responding to consumers’ wants. And consumers benefit from this arrangement through more, better, and cheaper goods. If we want a name for the free-market economy that indicates who its primary beneficiaries are, we should reappropriate the term consumerism.

But “consumerism” is only half of the story. It’s easy enough to show through the standard arguments that socialism doesn’t work for the benefit of society as a whole. We know from the socialist-calculation debate that eliminating the market altogether in favor of planning can’t work. But what about all of those countries, like the Soviet Union, that claimed to be planning their economies?

As we see in Red Plenty, the truth was that central planning served as a kind of myth around which economic activity could be oriented. Everyone acted as if there were a plan, but the actual way resources got allocated and shuffled around was much more complicated. In Red Plenty, we meet two characters who help us see this.

First is Cherkuskin, the middleman who trades on relationships and friendships to help producers get the goods they need to meet their centrally planned targets. Cherkuskin is the personification of what Ayn Rand called “the aristocracy of pull.” His power comes from whom he knows and what he can get them to do for you. When producers don’t have enough to fulfill their quotas because of the inability of the plan to allocate rationally or to respond to unexpected change, the Cherkuskins come into play and move resources around to help them — and to profit handsomely in the process. Underneath “the plan” was the black market that did a great deal to ensure that Soviet-style economies were minimally functional.

The other character is Maksim Maksimovich Mokhov, a high-ranking bureaucrat in the planning agency. Faced with the news of the destruction of a crucial machine, Mokhov has to figure out how to rebalance the plan given that one factory will either need a new machine or fail to produce the output that other factories need. Spufford gives us terrific imagery of Mokhov sliding around on his wheeled chair, abacus in hand, going from file to file using technology primitive by even the 1962 standard of that chapter of the book, attempting to reallocate resources with the flick of an eraser and the scratch of a pencil.

Both Cherkuskin and Mokhov are, functionally, substitutes for what the price system does under capitalism, and inferior substitutes at that.

But what’s most interesting is that neither of them cares one whit about the consumer. Cherkuskin is all about making sure that producers get what they need to fulfill the plan, never pausing to consider what the costs were for consumers. Mokhov describes consumers as a “shortage sink” because they are the end of the line, and if they don’t get what they want, no one else relies on them for further output. It was more important to balance out production than to worry if consumers got exactly what they needed.

What Spufford so nicely illustrates here is how real-world socialism, and not capitalism, put the needs of “capital” first and the wants of consumers last. In a world where producing more stuff, regardless of its value, was the path to plenty, ensuring that production continued according to the plan and that producers got what they needed were the central tasks. And the black market middlemen like Cherkuskin could make a real ruble or two doing so.

But unlike the profits of market capitalists, Cherkuskin’s rubles came at the expense of the consumer rather than reflecting mutual benefit. A system where consumers are just the folks who are expected to absorb the errors of the plan is hardly one geared to the interests of society as a whole. And a system where capital is ultimately the servant of consumers is misleadingly named if we call it capitalism.

It’s a difficult battle to get people to change the names they’ve long used for free markets and (supposedly) planned economies. Even if we don’t win that battle, it’s still important for us to point out how the terms capitalism and socialism really do give a false impression of how markets and planning work. If we want to know who really benefits from markets, a quick look around the abundance that is the typical American household will answer that question quite clearly.

Steven HorwitzSteven Horwitz

Steven Horwitz is the Charles A. Dana Professor of Economics at St. Lawrence University and the author of Hayek’s Modern Family: Classical Liberalism and the Evolution of Social Institutions.

He is a member of the FEE Faculty Network.

Pope Karl Marx I: Blaming Capitalism

In FrontPage today I discuss how the Pope has blamed the refugee crisis on…capitalism:

Did Karl Marx become Pope on March 13, 2013?

As the leader of a Church that encompasses the globe, one might expect Pope Francis to be a bit more…spiritual. Instead, he has more than once had recourse to Marxist analysis to explain global events, appearing to see economic deprivation as the cause of all the world’s evils. He did it again in an interview published last Monday, when he opined that the root cause of the refugee crisis engulfing Europe was economic inequality:

It is the tip of an iceberg. These poor people are fleeing war, hunger, but that is the tip of the iceberg. Because underneath that is the cause; and the cause is a bad and unjust socioeconomic system, in everything, in the world – speaking of the environmental problem –, in the socioeconomic society, in politics, the person always has to be in the centre. That is the dominant economic system nowadays, it has removed the person from the centre, placing the god money in its place, the idol of fashion. There are statistics, I don’t remember precisely, (I might have this wrong), but that 17% of the world’s population has 80% of the wealth.

Let’s see. Are the Syrian refugees fleeing war and hunger? Certainly. Are they, however, fleeing an unjust economic system? Are they fleeing Syria because Bashar Assad on the one hand and the Islamic State on the other are top-hatted plutocrats puffing cigars and chuckling as they send the proletariat off to back-breaking labor? Are Assad and the Islamic State fighting one another for an increased market share? Are the Syrian refugees streaming into Europe because Syria is in love with the god money and the idol of fashion? (The Pope actually may be on to something with that idol of fashion bit: certainly women in the Islamic State holdings in Syria will get killed if they don’t bow to the Islamic State’s idol of fashion and cover everything but their hands and face.)

In reality, the refugees are leaving Syria because the Sunnis of the Islamic State and other jihad groups are waging jihad against the Alawite regime of Assad and his Shi’ite Iranian allies, and have torn the country apart in the process. But to acknowledge that would require the Pope to admit that there is such a thing as jihad violence in the first place, and he is not at all disposed to do that; back in November 2013, he proclaimed his “respect for true followers of Islam” and declared that “authentic Islam and the proper reading of the Koran are opposed to every form of violence.”

So the peaceful Koran couldn’t possibly have anything to do with this refugee crisis, could it? It must be those heartless Syrian tycoons, or more precisely the European and American ones who are presumably keeping the Syrians in a perpetual state of poverty and deprivation.

Meanwhile, the refugees are not all fleeing hardship in Syria at all. Last February, the Islamic State promised to flood Europe in the near future with as many as 500,000 refugees. And an Islamic State operative recently boasted that among the flood of refugees, 4,000 Islamic State jihadis had entered Europe. “They are going like refugees,” he said, but they were going with the plan of sowing blood and mayhem on European streets. As he told this to journalists, he smiled and said, “Just wait.” He explained: “It’s our dream that there should be a caliphate not only in Syria but in all the world, and we will have it soon, inshallah.”

And last Monday, Lebanese Education Minister Elias Bou Saab warned that Islamic jihadis make up as much as two percent of the Syrian refugees in his country alone. Since there are 1.1 million Syrians in refugee camps in Lebanon, that amounts to 20,000 jihadis. How many more are already in Europe?

Despite his Marxist analysis, in the same interview the Pope acknowledged the possibility that there could be Islamic jihadists among the refugees: “I recognize that, nowadays, border safety conditions are not what they once were. The truth is that just 400 kilometres from Sicily there is an incredibly cruel terrorist group. So there is a danger of infiltration, this is true.” He even admitted that Rome could be at risk: “Yes, nobody said Rome would be immune to this threat.”

Despite this, however, he reiterated his request that Catholic parishes take in refugees: “What I asked was that in each parish and each religious institute, every monastery, should take in one family. A family, not just one person. A family gives more guarantees of security and containment, so as to avoid infiltrations of another kind.” And he applauded Europe’s welcoming of the refugees: “I want to say that Europe has opened its eyes, and I thank it. I thank the European countries which have become opened their eyes to this.”

Yet in so many important ways his own eyes appear to remain firmly closed. Is societal suicide really a requirement of Christian charity? Must Europe allow itself to be overrun by hostile invaders in order to prove its lack of racism and willingness to extend help to the needy? These are questions that Church leaders ought to be considering, but they’re too busy with their “dialogue” sessions at the local mosque to busy themselves with such trivialities. No doubt that “dialogue” will result in calls for more redress of economic inequalities, in accord with the Pope’s own world view – and more money will be showered upon Muslim countries, enabling the purchase of more weaponry and the onset of more jihad. At least Europe, as the blade plunges into its collective throat, can congratulate itself that even unto death, it always welcomed the stranger.

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Why Is the Vatican Pushing Communist Goals? by Michael Hichborn

This coming November, the Vatican’s Pontifical Academy for Science is holding a workshop intended to figure out how to indoctrinate your children in the Sustainable Development Goals [SDGs]. This comes on the heels of the Vatican nuncio to the United Nations announcing “verbatim” support for the SDGs, and after Catholic Relief Services president Dr. Carolyn Woo echoed Pope Francis’ call for support for the SDGs as well.

So, what are the Sustainable Development Goals?

They’re a United Nations plan for the creation of a global socialist utopia thinly disguised as a poverty reduction program. In short, the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals are the first step in achieving several of the goals laid out in Karl Marx’s Communist Manifesto. In truth, these goals are Communist goals, through and through. Here’s a snapshot of how specific portions of the SDGs line up with identified Communist goals:

Sustainable Development Goals:

  • Goal 1. End poverty in all its forms everywhere
    • Communists have always used the plight of the poor as justification for the implementation of their nefarious schemes
  • Goal 2. End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture
    • Plank 7 of the Communist Manifesto calls for a top-down approach to industry and agriculture
  • Goal 3. Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages
    • A 1938 issue of a Communist publication concluded that “only through the final victory of world socialism can the vast stores of available scientific knowledge really be put to work for the full benefit of humanity. ‘Socialized medicine’ is a meaningless phrase except in a socialized society.”
  • Goal 4. Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all
    • Plank 10 of the Communist Manifesto is “free education for all children in public schools.”
  • Goal 5. Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls
    • Communism has pushed for working women since the beginning of the Revolution in Russia.
  • Goal 8. Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all
    • Plank 8 of the Communist Manifesto: Equal liability of all to work. Establishment of industrial armies, especially for agriculture.
  • Goal 11. Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable
    • Plank 9 of the Communist Manifesto: Combination of agriculture with manufacturing industries; gradual abolition of all the distinction between town and country by a more equable distribution of the populace over the country.
  • Goal 12. Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns
    • This is an echo of Karl Marx’s mandate, “From each according to his ability to each according to his needs.”
  • Goal 17. Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the global partnership for sustainable development
    • This is pure global governance orchestrated by an entity with authority above national sovereignty.

This summary is not intended to be exhaustive, but should provide enough information to alarm even the most lukewarm of patriots and faithful Christians. But the Catholic Church, which has issued full and unqualified condemnations of Communism and Socialism should have nothing to do with the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals … and yet, “Catholic” social justice organizations and its leaders have hijacked key positions in the Vatican and are using their influence and authority to fast-track programs to get the faithful to fully support and work for the implementation of the SDGs. This is extremely dangerous and must be forcefully resisted by all faithful Catholics. What follows is a general overview of some of the more egregious of the SDGs in their audacious push for global Communist governance.

Read the rest at http://www.lepantoinstitute.org/.

Hichborn_headshot300ABOUT MICHAEL HICHBORN

Michael Hichborn is the president of the Lepanto Insitute. Formerly, Michael spent nearly eight years as American Life League’s Director of the Defend the Faith project. He has researched and produced countless articles and reports on the funding of abortion, birth control, homosexuality and Marxism by Catholic Relief Servies and the Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD). Michael holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Christendom College in Political Science and Economics and a Master’s degree in Education from American Intercontinental University. Michael lives in Virginia with his wife, Alyssa, and their five children.

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