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Exposing America's Enemies (Part 2): Communist Progressive Democrats
Sierra Times ^ | 5/23/2006 | Linda Kimball

Posted on 05/23/2006 8:41:29 AM PDT by FerdieMurphy

Exposing America's Enemies (Part 2): Communist Progressive Democrats Linda Kimball

From Exposing America’s Enemies: the ‘Social Justice Seeking’ Communist Left, comes this relevant quote, “For over forty years the New Left has been waging a Gramscian ‘quiet’ revolution for the overthrow of America’s Constitution, Rule of Law, sovereignty, and our way of life. Today the subversives call themselves liberals, progressives, and Democrats (and) as David Horowitz attested to (the majority are) social justice seeking communists. “The Democratic Party is very close to being the (Communist-controlled Progressive) party of Henry Wallace…the vast bulk of the American Left is a communist left.” (How Marxism Dominates the Left, Phil Brennan,, June 1, 2005)

The Backbone Campaign is a communist front group in the left's vast interconnected matrix of revolutionary groups. On its website it declares its goal is to: “empower citizens to nominate, comment on, and rate progressive leaders to serve as a virtual Progressive Parallel Administration…we are not content running campaigns, but preparing to run the country.” ( )

Chief among Backbone Campaign sponsoring organizations is the Progressive Democrats of America, who are committed to: “dismantling the military industrial complex.” (ibid)

“The Progressive Caucus is made up of the most Far-Left members of Congress and best represents the socialist wing of the Democratic Party.” (Radical Road Maps, James H. Hansen, p. 186) Progressive Democrats are responsible for installing Howard Dean as Democratic National Chairman. In Feb. 2005, Dean was quoted by U.S. News and World Report as exclaiming: “I hate the Republicans and everything they stand for.” Dean's power base, according to, are a bunch of “campus communists.” The Progressive Caucus will be the focus of this article.

Social Justice is Communism

Judging from the adolescent name-calling and howls of protest which my previous article elicited from Progressive groups such as the Democratic Underground, it is obvious that the enraged howlers have no idea of what it really means for one to be a seeker of social justice. Either that or they really do know but are deceivers of the first magnitude.

Be that as it may, some clarification and definition of the terms—social justice and communism-- is in order before proceeding on to the issue of Progressive Democrats.

To most Americans, communism means the Kremlin, gulags, killing fields, and Mao’s brutal Red Guard. These things though were not the essence of communism. They were the visible manifestations of inhumane power and its consequences, all of which resulted when social justice seekers acquired total control to remake society and man.

The essence of communism is social justice, or justice in the social sphere. This is code for the elimination of poverty, of suffering, and of all differences between humans that erect walls between people. Fundamentally, social justice is a process of elimination that results in sameness (egalitarianism). When social justice seekers speak of the need for equality, what they’re really calling for is sameness.

However, the attributes which make people different from each other and which social justice seekers are determined to eliminate, are the product of human nature and of freely made choices. For instance, some people are ambitious and hard-working while others are indolent and lazy and may willfully choose to live out of the pockets of the former.

It’s the positive aspects of human nature that make a society dynamic. Dynamism is the animating force behind America’s greatness--her productivity, excellence, creativity, free markets, etc. In eliminating human differences, social justice seekers kill all of this, and as they did in the former Soviet Union, leave behind a smoking ruin haunted by despairing cookie-cutter claymation beings.

In speaking of the social justice process of elimination, Balint Vazsonyi remarked, “Prophets of social justice—communists, whether by that name or any other name—focus on who should have less. Because they have nothing to give, they can only take away. First, they take away opportunity. Next, they take away possessions. In the end, they have to take away life itself.” (America’s 30 Years War, Balint Vazsonyi, p. 59)

The America of our Founders simply cannot coexist with the Search for Social Justice. For instance, as designed by our Founders, the Rule of Law exists to guarantee that unequal (different) people can have individual liberty, rights and possessions—including land ownership, which social justice seekers view as the original sin. Social justice demands that those who possess more of anything have it taken away from those who earned it and redistributed to those who did nothing to earn it.

“Social Justice Seeking” Democratic Progressive Caucus

The Democratic Progressive Caucus (DPC) is an organization comprised of about sixty Members of Congress. It was founded in 1991 by Rep. Bernie Sanders, former socialist mayor of Burlington, VT and member of the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA). The DSA describes itself as, “the principle U.S. affiliate of the Socialist International.” ( )

The DPC advances its communist agenda behind innocuous sounding phrases such as social and economic justice. The three core principles of The Progressive Promise are:

1. Fighting for economic justice and security for all. (Code for: We’re going to ‘eliminate poverty and suffering’ by taking away all of your possessions and redistributing them.)

2. Protecting and preserving our civil rights and civil liberties. (Code for: We’re going to ‘eliminate’ all differences and pound everyone down to the lowest common denominator).

3. Promoting global peace and security. (Code for: We—your Superiors—will finally feel secure and at peace once agendas 1-2 have been carried out to completion.) (Source:

In “Pelosi Leader of Progressive Caucus,” it was revealed: “Until 1999, the website of the Progressive Caucus was hosted by the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA). Following an expose of the link between the two organizations in World Net Daily, the Progressive Caucus established its own website.” (, Nov 11, 2002)

On the website of the DSA it boldly declares: “We are socialists…Democracy and socialism go hand in hand…wherever…democracy has taken root, the vision of socialism has taken root as well.” ( ) The DSA increases its influence and power by networking with the Democratic Party to advance social justice programs and policies such as affirmative action and Stalinist hate crime laws. “Like our friends and allies in the feminist, labor, civil rights, religious, and community movements, many of us have been active in the Democratic Party.” (ibid)

Following are brief descriptions of some of the social justice seeking subversives in the Democratic Progressive Caucus whose words and actions embrace the tenets of communism:

1. Barbara Lee (D-CA): “former agent of the Black Panther leader and convicted killer, Huey Newton. Lee conspired with fellow communist, Cong. Ron Dellums, who used his authority to impede US foreign policy with regard to the Communist dictatorship of Grenada.” ( ) “anti-American Communist who supports America’s enemies and has actively collaborated with them.” (Radical Road Map, James H. Hansen, p.189)

2. Jim McDermott (D-WA): “In 2002, McDermott and fellow Progressive Caucus member Rep. David Bonoir (D-Mich) and Rep. Mike Thompson (D-CA) traveled to Baghdad, where they publicly embraced Saddam Hussein and created propaganda on his behalf.” ( )

3. Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill), who has accepted an award from the DSA once told one of its writers: “The American people are not ideological; therefore, the way to go is to attack private power.” (ibid)

4. John Conyers (D-MI): “In 1981 Conyers co-hosted a delegation from the Soviet front World Peace Council, giving that group a forum in Congress. Conyers endorsed a Communist-led antiwar demonstration in Washington in 1983 and…spoke at another Washington demonstration led by ANSWER in 2003.” (Radical Road Map’s, James H. Hansen, p 189)

5. Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) “has taken part in…CAIR (a radical group with ties to Mideast terrorist organizations) events…including a Ramadan iftar…hosted (on Capitol Hill) by Rep. John Conyers (D-MI), Loretta Sanchez (D-CA), and Barbara Lee (D-CA).” (Kucinich Headlines Muslim Fundraiser,, Nov. 30, 2003)

The Constitution requires that members of Congress “shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation to support this constitution.” The Oath of Office sworn to by US Senators reads:

“I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the U.S…that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God.”

Very simply, if Democratic Progressive Caucus members truthfully believed in the Christian-Judeo God and likewise in our Constitution--the document conceived of by our Founders and not the Lefts living document nonsense—they wouldn’t be social justice seeking communists. Rather, they would be Conservative Constitutionalists. That they are social justice seekers tells us that when they took their oath before God, they lied. Quite simply—they lied.

In Noah Webster’s 1828 edition of the American Dictionary of the English Language we find the correct term to apply to treacherous Democratic Progressives. That word is “traitor,” and the following definition is the one most likely referred to by our Founders. “Traitor: One who violates allegiance and betrays his country; one guilty of treason…who, in breach of trust, delivers his country to its enemy…who aids an enemy in conquering his country.”

Through use of Stalinist psycho-politics, America’s Communist Left imprisoned the consciences of Americans within psychic strait-jackets of political correctness. As long as we allow ourselves to be chained by political correctness, we will not be able to identify and speak openly about our enemies--those without, and those within. In the absence of freedom of conscience and of clear and honest speaking, we can neither formulate strategies for our safety nor deal appropriately with the treacherous deceivers operating amongst us who are colluding with our enemies and plotting to destroy our nation from within. The first order of business then, is for all Americans to break out of the psychic strait jackets of political correctness, thus allowing Truth to expose the treachery and treason at work in our nation.

Truth will set us free: “And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” John 8:32

TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Crime/Corruption; Government; Politics/Elections; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: 109th; bonoir; congresstraitors; conyers; dellums; kuchinich; lee; leftists; mcdermott; progressives; sanchez; schakowsky; thompson
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America’s Communist Left imprisoned the consciences of Americans within psychic strait-jackets of political correctness.

And practically 50% of Americans fall for this nation destructing garbage.

1 posted on 05/23/2006 8:41:33 AM PDT by FerdieMurphy
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To: FerdieMurphy

and let's not forget those Men In Black (a la Supremes) who want to use International Law & Precedents to make up laws in the USA.

2 posted on 05/23/2006 9:13:04 AM PDT by prophetic
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To: FerdieMurphy

They are ignorant of the facts and the MSM dare not let the facts out. If they did only 12%-16% would support them and they would disappear politically.

3 posted on 05/23/2006 9:14:10 AM PDT by conservativewasp (Liberals lie for sport and hate our country.)
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To: FerdieMurphy

What escapes my understanding is why our republican comrades do not label them and their policies as loudly and with great frequency as often as possible If that was the only thing they did the democrats would lose half their party as they only have gotten this far by hiding that fact.

4 posted on 05/23/2006 9:14:22 AM PDT by underbyte
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To: FerdieMurphy

57 MILLION VOTERS DID LAST ELECTION!!! It is not the Islamic jehadists that scares me. It is the 57 MILLION ENEMIES WITHIN that can vote. Plus the other 15-20 million ILLEGALS. Now, count your puny 61 million Bush votes and you lose by 11-15 MILLION VOTES when the illegals get voting rights, which they are going to do when AMANISTY IS VOTED IN BY THE STINKING LIBERAL U.S. CONGRESS!!!

5 posted on 05/23/2006 9:19:41 AM PDT by RetiredArmy (You better prepare, the war is coming to the USA VERY SOON!)
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To: FerdieMurphy


6 posted on 05/23/2006 9:20:48 AM PDT by shield (A wise man's heart is at his RIGHT hand; but a fool's heart at his LEFT. Ecc. 10:2)
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To: underbyte

I agree. After all, the Rats howl incessantly that our civil liberties are being eroded when it is clear to me that if they were in power they would be doing the same thing and saying it is just fine. After all, I just got a statement of my IRA account that informed me that the custodian is sending the value of my IRA to the GOVERNMENT. So what is this privacy thing the Rats are talking about. The big government they have erected over the last 70 years and continue to support unwaveringly, has all sorts of info on me.
So,yes, why don't the Pubbies get on the offensive and start making assertions about the Rats. At least with the info in this article they would be armed with the truth!

7 posted on 05/23/2006 9:31:53 AM PDT by bombthrower
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To: FerdieMurphy

This past Sunday at my daughter's commencement (Doctor of Pharmacy Ohio Northern University, thank you very much.). The speaker was James Dicke of Crown Mfg. He made the statement that "Central Planning has been relagated to the ash heap of history".
I guess he missed Hillary Clinton's speech in Chicago (4/11/06) last month. She supports the Central Infrastructure Planning Agency.

8 posted on 05/23/2006 9:33:31 AM PDT by griswold3 (Ken Blackwell, Ohio Governor in 2006- No!! You cannot have my governor in 2008.)
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To: FerdieMurphy

Look up Radfest and the topics, participants, etc.

It is a communist/socialist propaganda fair. They work on methods to further their agenda across the US.

I am glad to see someone else noticed the socialists and their work.

9 posted on 05/23/2006 9:40:50 AM PDT by azkathy (Branded by the Rodeo Chediski Fire)
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To: bombthrower
They (democrats) control the national dialog, perhaps if they were on the defensive we would not have to settle for slushy compassionate conservatives like Bush and somebody like a Newt Gingrich becomes a feasible, reasonable alternative rather than portrayed as a right wing Zealot
10 posted on 05/23/2006 10:03:30 AM PDT by underbyte
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To: RetiredArmy

Right on target!

11 posted on 05/23/2006 11:10:12 AM PDT by FerdieMurphy (For English, Press One. (Tookie, you won the Pulitzer and Nobel prizes. Oh, too late.))
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To: little jeremiah


12 posted on 05/23/2006 11:37:11 AM PDT by spirited irish
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To: wagglebee; DBeers

13 posted on 05/23/2006 11:38:01 AM PDT by spirited irish
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To: underbyte

underbyte:What escapes my understanding is why our republican comrades do not label them and their policies

Exactly! This is precisely what needs to be done. Imagine the impact if Americans read the following statements:

"American Communists Seek Impeachment of President Bush"
"Communist Democrat Party Pushes for Open Borders"

14 posted on 05/23/2006 11:41:57 AM PDT by spirited irish
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To: Marxbites


15 posted on 05/23/2006 11:45:30 AM PDT by spirited irish
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To: FerdieMurphy
Communist Progressive Democrats

Redundant - Redundant - Redundant

16 posted on 05/23/2006 11:46:17 AM PDT by Hardastarboard (Why isn't there an "NRA" for the rest of my rights?)
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To: spirited irish
Maybe we are as guilty here on Freerepublic, After all we use their own definition of themselves (Progressive, Liberal etc.). What if you were only allowed to post "socialist" when referring to the other side?

Kennedy,Gore,Dean, Clinton, Kerry, Pelosi, Black Caucus........ - All the party leaders fit that label. Who knows maybe some of the gutsier politico's will pick it up or maybe somebody in the media? Ha!LOL we can start a new movement in the republican party where it is savvy to call your political opponent a "socialist" :)
17 posted on 05/23/2006 12:18:23 PM PDT by underbyte
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To: FerdieMurphy

///Chief among Backbone Campaign sponsoring organizations is the Progressive Democrats of America, who are committed to: “dismantling the military industrial complex.” (ibid)//

I am for this too - but not without dismantling the welfare state, including corp subsidy, as well.

The constitution called for a Navy but NEVER a standing Army, for that is the militia comprised of We the People.

The Progressive commie bastards, starting with TR's war against Spain, when in fact the Maine sank on her own, and his socalled trust busting that did the reverse.

What this article painfully leaves out is that the Progressive era push for bigger Govt to benefit Big Biz at taxpayer expense has been largely foisted upon us by progressives of BOTH parties going on 100 years now - just look at Ike & Nixon, and in some ways W.

The Reps never got their limited Govt mind's right until AU-H2O, followed by RWR, then Newt. All the rest might as well be Rats for the lack of good they've done us.

It was the nation's correct perception that the Reps represented Big Biz and the trusts, and is why Wilson, then FDR and the Rat party controlled both houses of Congress for 44 of the 48 yrs between 1932 & 1980 - 92% of the time.

The progressives made a good point of Big Biz getting Govt favors, except for their idiotic embrace of Marxist central planning to concentrate power in the FedGov in the guise of the genl welfare which increasingly became anything but genl as would be a battleship.

In fact - FA Hayek, Reagan & Thatcher's favorite economist, foretold that the collectivism he saw in early 30's Germany, would transform into tyranny as it had before in history. This is the guy FDR dissed in favor of Keynes. Smart Brits sh@tcanned him, and their economy took off way before ours did.

18 posted on 05/23/2006 12:20:35 PM PDT by Marxbites (Freedom is the negation of Govt to the maximum extent possible. Today, Govt is the economy's virus.)
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To: FerdieMurphy

Bogus Rights - By Walter Williams

Do people have a right to medical treatment whether or not they can pay? What about a right to food or decent housing? Would a U.S. Supreme Court justice hold that these are rights just like those enumerated in our Bill of Rights? In order to have any hope of coherently answering these questions, we have to decide what is a right. The way our Constitution's framers used the term, a right is something that exists simultaneously among people and imposes no obligation on another. For example, the right to free speech, or freedom to travel, is something we all simultaneously possess. My right to free speech or freedom to travel imposes no obligation upon another except that of non-interference. In other words, my exercising my right to speech or travel requires absolutely nothing from you and in no way diminishes any of your rights.

Contrast that vision of a right, to so-called rights to medical care, food or decent housing, independent of whether a person can pay. Those are not rights in the sense that free speech and freedom of travel are rights. If it is said that a person has rights to medical care, food and housing, and has no means of paying, how does he enjoy them? There's no Santa Claus or Tooth Fairy who provides them. You say, "The Congress provides for those rights." Not quite. Congress does not have any resources of its very own. The only way Congress can give one American something is to first, through the use of intimidation, threats and coercion, take it from another American. So-called rights to medical care, food and decent housing impose an obligation on some other American who, through the tax code, must be denied his right to his earnings. In other words, when Congress gives one American a right to something he didn't earn, it takes away the right of another American to something he did earn.

If this bogus concept of rights were applied to free speech rights and freedom to travel, my free speech rights would impose financial obligations on others to provide me with an auditorium and microphone. My right to travel freely would require that the government take the earnings of others to provide me with airplane tickets and hotel accommodations.

Philosopher John Locke's vision of natural law guided the founders of our nation. Our Declaration of Independence expresses that vision, declaring, "We hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness." Government is necessary, but the only rights we can delegate to government are the ones we possess. For example, we all have a natural right to defend ourselves against predators. Since we possess that right, we can delegate authority to government to defend us. By contrast, we don't have a natural right to take the property of one person to give to another; therefore, we cannot legitimately delegate such authority to government.

Three-fifths to two-thirds of the federal budget consists of taking property from one American and giving it to another. Were a private person to do the same thing, we'd call it theft. When government does it, we euphemistically call it income redistribution, but that's exactly what thieves do — redistribute income. Income redistribution not only betrays the founders' vision, it's a sin in the eyes of G-d. I'm guessing that when G-d gave Moses the Eighth Commandment, "Thou shalt not steal," I'm sure he didn't mean "thou shalt not steal unless there was a majority vote in Congress."

The real tragedy for our nation is that any politician who holds the values of liberty that our founders held would be soundly defeated in today's political arena.

19 posted on 05/23/2006 12:26:07 PM PDT by Marxbites (Freedom is the negation of Govt to the maximum extent possible. Today, Govt is the economy's virus.)
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To: FerdieMurphy

No doubt about it, Hayek's The Road to Serfdom was explosively controversial from the beginning, especially his case that all forms of collectivism lead to tyranny. The book was first published on 10th March 1944 by Routledge in Britain.

Nobel Prize winning economist Ronald Coase recalls that during Britain's July 1945 parliamentary election, Winston Churchill cited Hayek in his dramatic campaign speeches, to help show that a Labor Party win would mean tyranny. Labor Party leader Clement Atlee ridiculed Hayek and defeated Churchill. Soon afterwards, Atlee began seizing coal, steel, railroads, ports and other businesses, and began extending rationing to basic foods such as potatoes, even though war was over.

Opposition to Hayek's ideas was fierce in the United States, and a number of publishers rejected the book, but there were friends of freedom who worked wonders. Hayek authorized fellow Austrian economist Fritz Machlup, then working in Washington, to try finding an American publisher, but he was unsuccessful. He gave a copy of the Routledge page proofs to University of Chicago economics professor Aaron Director who met Hayek in 1943 when both were teaching at the London School of Economics. Director passed the page proofs to Frank Knight, founding father of the "Chicago School." Knight apparently gave them to William T. Couch, a classical liberal friend at the University of Chicago Press which agreed to publish the book on September 18, 1944. But since nobody expected it would sell many copies, the initial printing was only 2,000. It was a little wartime edition about 4- 7/8ths by 6-3/4 inches.

To help the book gain a hearing, the publishers asked John Chamberlain, respected book editor for Harper's magazine and a devout libertarian, to write a foreword. His name appeared prominently on the cover.

The initial reception was cool. On September 20, 1944, New York Times daily book reviewer Orville Prescott called it a "sad and angry little book."

But then New York Times economics editorial writer Henry Hazlitt weighed in with a home run: a 1,500 word blockbuster review on the front page of the Sunday New York Times Book Review, September 24, 1944. Hazlitt declared that "Friedrich Hayek has written one of the most important books of our generation." The University of Chicago Press ordered another printing. The book sold 22,000 copies by year-end and sold this much again by spring 1945.

Meanwhile, Reader's Digest editors DeWitt and Lila Acheson Wallace expressed interest in publishing an excerpt from the book, and the University of Chicago Press, eager to reach a popular audience, seems to have given away those rights for nothing. Hayek later remarked he never got a penny. In any case, The Road to Serfdom filled the first 20 pages of the April 1945 Reader's Digest under a banner headline drawn from Hazlitt's review: "One of the Most Important Books of Our Generation." This brought Hayek's story to about 8 million people in the U.S. alone. Subsequently, Book-of-the-Month Club distributed some 600,000 copies of a condensed edition.

Sales records are incomplete, but there were a good many more printings after that, and the book eventually sold at least 230,000 copies in the U.S. Hayek went on a U.S. lecture tour, including prestigious places like Harvard University, and he decided he rather liked being a lightning rod for freedom. He expressed his views in popular publications like the Chicago Sun, Boston Traveler and New York Times Magazine. He met many friends of freedom with whom he was to collaborate in later years. Three dozen friends joined him to found the international Mont Pelerin Society.

One of Hayek's friends, Milton Friedman, recalls that "From the time I first read some of his works, and even more from the time in the mid-1940s that I first met Friedrich Hayek, his powerful mind, his moral courage, his lucid and always principled exposition have helped to broaden and deepen my understanding of the meaning and the requisites of a free society."

Please be aware that Hayek, Adam Smith and our founders were true liberals and proponents of limited government, free markets, tolerance, open mindedness, peace and maximum individual liberty.

Leftists and socialists long ago usurped the moniker Liberal and use it still today. But instead, today’s “liberals” support Unlimited Government, favor wage and price controls, are intolerant of free markets vis regulation, are intolerant of the forces opposed to the socialist nanny statism that wears down the will of individuals to be citizens capable of fulfilling their part as a protected citizen by being productive versus disproportionately consumptive of government services that others pay for but use little of.

Reader’s Digest Condensed Version – 1945:
The Road to Serfdom by FA Hayek

I, the Author have spent about half my adult life in my native Austria, in close touch with German thought, and the other half in the United States and England. In the latter period I have become increasingly convinced that some of the forces which destroyed freedom in Germany are also at work here. The very magnitude of the outrages committed by the National Socialists has strengthened the assurance that a totalitarian system cannot happen here. But let us remember that 15 years ago the possibility of such a thing happening in Germany would have appeared just as fantastic not only to nine tenths of the Germans themselves but also to the most hostile foreign observer.

There are many features which were then regarded as "typically German" which are now equally familiar in America and England, and many symptoms that point to a further development in the same direction: the increasing veneration for the state, the fatalistic acceptance of "inevitable trends," the enthusiasm for "organization" of everything (we now call it "planning").

The tragic character of the danger is, if possible, even less understood here than it was in Germany. In Germany it was largely people of good will, whose socialist beliefs prepared the way for the forces that stand for everything they detest. Few recognize that the rise of fascism and Nazism was not a reaction against socialism but a necessary outcome of the trend towards it. Yet it is significant that many of the leaders of these movements, from Mussolini down (and including Laval and Quisling) began as socialists and ended as Fascists or Nazis. In the democracies at present, many who sincerely hate all of Nazism's manifestations are working for ideals whose realization would lead straight to such abhorred tyranny. Many influential people in society are in some measure socialists. They believe that our economic life should be "consciously directed," that we should substitute "economic planning" for the competitive system. Yet is there a greater tragedy imaginable, that in our endeavor consciously to shape our future in accordance with high ideals, we should in fact unwittingly produce the very opposite of what we have been striving for?

Planning and Power

In order to achieve their ends, the planners must create power - power over men wielded by other men - of a magnitude never before known. Democracy is an obstacle to this suppression of freedom, which the centralized direction of economic activity requires. Hence arises the clash between planning and democracy.

Many socialists have the tragic illusion that by depriving private individuals of the power they possess in an individualist system, and transferring this power to society, they thereby extinguish power. What they overlook is that, by concentrating power so that it can be used in the service of a single plan, it is not merely transformed but infinitely heightened. An amount of power is created infinitely greater than any that existed before, so much more far-reaching as almost to be different in kind. It is entirely fallacious to argue that the great power exercised by a central planning board would be "no greater than the power collectively exercised by private boards of directors." There is, in a competitive society, nobody who can exercise even a fraction of the power that a socialist planning board would possess. To decentralize power is to reduce the absolute amount of power, and the competitive system is the only system designed to minimize the power exercised by man over man. Who can seriously doubt that the power which a millionaire, who may be my employer, has over me is very much less than that which the smallest bureaucrat possesses who wields the coercive power of the state and on whose discretion it depends how I am allowed to live and work?

Our generation has forgotten that the system of private property is the most important guarantee of freedom. It is only because the control of the means of production is divided among many people acting independently that we as individuals can decide what to do with ourselves. When all the means of production are vested in a single hand, whether it be nominally that of "society" as a whole or that of a dictator, whoever exercises this control has complete power over us. In the hands of private individuals, what is called economic power can be an instrument of coercion, but it is never control over the whole life of a person. But when economic power is centralized as an instrument of political power it creates a degree of dependence scarcely distinguishable from slavery. It has been well said that, in a country where the sole employer is the state, opposition means death by slow starvation.

Background to Danger

Individualism, in contrast to socialism and all other forms of totalitarianism, is based on the respect of Christianity for the individual man and the belief that it is desirable that men should be free to develop their own individual gifts and bents. This philosophy, first fully developed during the Renaissance, grew and spread into what we know as Western civilization. The general direction of social development was one of freeing the individual from the ties which bound him in feudal society.

Perhaps the greatest result of this unchaining of individual energies was the marvelous growth of science. Science made the great strides which in the last 150 years have changed the face of the world. The result of this growth surpassed all expectations. Wherever the barriers to the free exercise of human ingenuity were removed, man became rapidly able to satisfy ever-widening ranges of desire. By the beginning of the 20th century the workingman in the Western World had reached a degree of material comfort, security and personal independence which 100 years before had hardly seemed possible. The effect of this success was to create among men a new sense of power over their own fate, the belief in the unbounded possibilities of improving their own lot. What had been achieved came to be regarded as a secure and imperishable possession, acquired once and for all; and the rate of progress began to seem too slow. Moreover, the principles which had made this progress possible came to be regarded as obstacles to speedier progress, impatiently to be brushed away. It might be said that the very success of liberalism became the cause of its decline.

According to the views now dominant, the question is no longer how we can make the best use of the spontaneous forces found in a free society. We have in effect undertaken to dispense with these forces and to replace them by collective and "conscious" direction. It is significant that this abandonment of liberalism began in Germany. During the last quarter of the 19th century and the first quarter of the 20th, Germany moved far ahead in both the theory and the practice of socialism, so that even today Russian discussion largely carries on where the Germans left off. The Germans, long before the Nazis, were attacking liberalism and democracy, capitalism and individualism.

Long before the Nazis, too, the German and Italian socialists were using techniques of which the Nazis and Fascists later made effective use. The idea of a political party which embraces all activities of the individual from the cradle to the grave, which claims to guide his views on everything, was first put into practice by the socialists. It was not the Fascists but the socialists who began to collect children at the tenderest age into political organizations to direct their thinking. It was not the Fascists but the socialists who first thought of organizing sports and games, football and hiking, in party clubs where the members would not be infected by other views. It was the socialists who first insisted that the party member should distinguish himself from others by the modes of greeting and the forms of address. It was they who, by their organization of "cells" and devices for the permanent supervision of private life, created the prototype of the totalitarian party.
By the time Hitler came to power, liberalism was dead in Germany. And it was socialism that had killed it. To many who have watched the transition from socialism to fascism at close quarters the connection between the two systems has become increasingly obvious, but in the democracies the majority of people still believe that socialism and freedom can be combined. They do not realize that to strive for socialism produces something utterly different - the very destruction of freedom itself. As has been aptly said: "What has always made the state a hell on earth has been precisely that man has tried to make it his heaven."

It is disquieting to see in England, [Australia,] and the United States today the same drawing together of forces and nearly the same contempt of all that is liberal in the old sense. "Conservative socialism" was the slogan under which a large number of writers prepared the atmosphere in which National Socialism succeeded. It is "conservative socialism" which is the dominant trend - among us now.

The Liberal Way of Planning

Everybody desires, of course, that we should handle our common problems with as much foresight as possible. Hence the popularity of "planning." The dispute between the modern planners and the liberals is not on whether we ought to employ systematic thinking in planning our affairs. It is a dispute whether we should create conditions under which the knowledge and initiative of individuals are given the best scope so that they can plan most successfully; or whether all economic activities should conform to a "blue-print" written by powerful planners.

It is important not to confuse opposition against centralist planning with a dogmatic laissez faire attitude. The liberal argument is based on the conviction that, where effective competition can be created, it is a better way of guiding individual efforts than any other. It emphasizes that in order to make competition work beneficially a carefully thought-out legal framework is required. Competition is not only the most efficient method known, it is also the only method that does not require the coercive or arbitrary intervention of authority. It dispenses with social control and gives individuals a chance to decide whether the prospects of a particular occupation are sufficient to compensate for the disadvantages connected with it.

The successful use of competition does not preclude some types of government interference. For instance, to limit working hours or to require certain sanitary arrangements. An extensive system of social services is fully compatible with the preservation of competition. There are, too, certain fields where the system of competition is impracticable. For example, the harmful effects of deforestation or of the smoke of factories cannot be confined to the owner of the property in question.

But a few exceptions do not prove that we should suppress competition where it can be made to function. To create conditions in which competition will be as effective as possible, to prevent fraud and deception, to break up monopolies - these tasks provide a wide and unquestioned field for state activity. This does not mean that it is possible to find some "middle way" between competition and central direction, though nothing seems at first more plausible, or is more likely to appeal to reasonable people.

Although competition can bear some admixture of regulation, it cannot be combined with planning to any extent without ceasing to operate as an effective guide to production. Both competition and central direction become poor and inefficient tools if they are incomplete. A mixture of the two means that neither will work. Planning and competition can be combined only by planning for competition, not by planning against competition. The planning against which all our criticism is directed is solely the planning against competition.

The Great Utopia

There is no doubt that most of those in the democracies who demand a central direction of all economic activity still believe that socialism and individual freedom can be combined. Yet socialism was early recognized by many thinkers as the gravest threat to freedom.

It is rarely remembered now that socialism in its beginnings was frankly authoritarian. It began quite openly as a reaction against the liberalism of the French Revolution. The French writers who laid its foundation had no doubt that their ideas could be put into practice only by a strong dictatorial government. The first of modern planners, Saint-Simon, predicted that those who did not obey his proposed planning boards would be "treated as cattle."

Nobody saw more clearly than the great political thinker de Tocqueville that democracy stands in an irreconcilable conflict with socialism: "Democracy extends the sphere of individual freedom," he said. "Democracy attaches all possible value to each man," he said in 1848, "while socialism makes each man a mere agent, a mere number. Democracy and socialism have nothing in common but one word: equality. But notice the difference: while democracy seeks equality in liberty, socialism seeks equality in restraint and servitude."

To allay these suspicions and to harness to its cart the strongest of all political motives - the craving for freedom - socialists began increasingly to make use of the promise of a "new freedom." Socialism was to bring "economic freedom," without which political freedom was "not worth having."

To make this argument sound plausible, the word "freedom" was subjected to a subtle change in meaning. The word had formerly meant freedom from coercion, from the arbitrary power of other men. Now it was made to mean freedom from necessity, the old demand for a redistribution of wealth. They meant freedom reduced to hunger for power and wealth.

The claim that a planned economy would produce a substantially larger output than the competitive system is being progressively abandoned by most students of the problem. Although our modern socialists' promise of greater freedom is genuine and sincere, in recent years observer after observer has been impressed by the unforeseen consequences of socialism, the extraordinary similarity in many respects of the conditions under "communism" and "fascism." As the writer Peter Drucker expressed it in 1939, "Fascism is the stage reached after communism has proved an illusion, and it has proved as much an illusion in Russia as in pre-Hitler Germany." No less significant is the intellectual outlook of the rank and file in the communist and fascist movements in Germany before 1933.

The relative ease with which a young communist could be converted into a Nazi or vice-versa was well known, best of all to the propagandists of the two parties. The communists and Nazis clashed more frequently with each other than with other parties simply because they competed for the same type of mind and reserved for each other the hatred of the heretic. Their practice showed how closely they are related. To both, the real enemy, the man with whom they had nothing in common, was the liberal of the old type. While Nazis, communists and socialists are potential recruits made of the right timber for each other, they all know that there can be no compromise between them and those who really believe in individual freedom.

What is promised to us as the Road to Freedom is in fact the Highroad to Servitude. For it is not difficult to see what must be the consequences when democracy embarks upon a course of planning. The goal of the planning will be described by some such vague term as "the general welfare." Without total agreement on the ends of planning, central planning will be rather like a journey where most travelers disagree over where they want to go. The result is they may all make a journey which most of them do not want at all.

Democratic assemblies cannot function as planning agencies. They cannot produce agreement on everything - the whole direction of the resources of the nation. The number of possible courses of action will be legion. Even if a congress could, by proceeding step by step and compromising at each point, agree on some scheme, it would certainly in the end satisfy nobody.

To draw up an economic plan in this fashion is even less possible than, for instance, successfully planning a military campaign by democratic procedure. As in strategy it would become inevitable to delegate the task to experts. And even if, by this expedient, a democracy should succeed in planning every sector of economic activity, it would still have to face the problem of integrating these separate plans into a unitary whole. There will be a stronger and stronger demand that some board or some single individual should be given power to act on their own responsibility.

The cry for an economic dictator is a characteristic stage in the movement toward planning. Thus the legislative body will be reduced to choosing the persons who are to have practically absolute power. There is no justification for the widespread belief that, so long as power is conferred by democratic procedure, it cannot be arbitrary. It is not the source of power which prevents it from being arbitrary; to be free from dictatorial qualities the power must also be limited. Even a democratic "dictatorship of the proletariat," undertaking centrally to direct the economic system, would probably destroy personal freedom as completely as any autocracy has ever done.

In wartime, subordination of almost everything to the immediate need of victory comes at a price which we preserve our freedom in the long run. The fashionable phrases about doing for the purposes of peace what we have learned to do for the purposes of war are completely misleading, for it is sensible temporarily to sacrifice freedom in order to make it more secure in the future, but it is quite a different thing to sacrifice liberty permanently in the interests of a planned economy.

To those who have watched the transition from socialism to fascism at close quarters, the connection between the two systems is obvious. The realization of the socialist program means the destruction of freedom. Democratic socialism, the great utopia of the last few generations, is simply not achievable.

(but it sure does a great job of protecting and expanding the fortunes of the political and business elites who have successfully shaped it into such for the last hundred years - glh)

20 posted on 05/23/2006 12:44:42 PM PDT by Marxbites (Freedom is the negation of Govt to the maximum extent possible. Today, Govt is the economy's virus.)
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