We Have Seen The Enemy……………..

What is socialism? In order to identify it one must first define it. One of the best and simplest essays I have read was written by a Frenchman published in 1850; Frederic Bastiat The Law. His definition of law is justice. Justice that protects each individual’s right to life, liberty and equality. Sounds familiar. That is the sole purpose of Government to protect citizens and provide the opportunity for justice. Law makers (legislators are a 4 letter word for him) often put themselves above the law and taking a patronizing persona pass laws that cause systematic inequality by taking from one to give to another.


“The delusion of the day is to enrich all classes at the expense of each other; it is to generalize plunder under the pretense of organizing it. Now legal plunder may be organized in an infinite number of ways. Hence come an infinite multitude of plans for organization: tariffs, protection, perquisites, gratuities, encouragements, progressive taxation, free public education, right to work, right to profit, right to wages, right to assistance, right to instruments of labor, gratuity of credit, etc., etc. And it is in all these plans, taken as a whole, with what they have in common, legal plunder, that takes the name of socialism.”

“But it is the law that socialism evokes legal plunder not extralegal.”

“Legal plunder has two roots….human greed and philanthropy.”

Socialism cannot organize these systems without disorganizing justice

If we except these words as a true description of what socialism is and why it is unjust (and I do) then it becomes simple to assess what exists in America today, identify the legal plunder and call it what it is not cloak it as “progressive and enlightened”, it is regressive and deceptive and designed to  pacify those who do not relish liberty and freedom more than security through theft.

It began in the 1850’s with Union activities and has progressed through many systems of legalized plunder; progressive taxation, welfare, unemployment benefits, massive unions, and has reached a zenith in Obamacare.

Obama is the chief architect of the total transition from a Republic to a Socialistic State. We still have the bells and whistles of democracy hanging about but they are drying up as the legislators scramble to find more legal plunder. The process discourages American Exceptionalism through excessive taxation of success and destroying the underlying principles of innovation, invention and hard work.

Last week in Kansas he scoffed at the idea that some called him a Socialist while in the same breath he touts legal plunder as the centerpiece of his administration.

As Pogo said “we have seen the enemy and it is us”


7 Responses

  1. You and I come at the problem from different perspectives, of course. I think you might say that American exceptionalism is dead because Government has smothered it. I would say that it’s dead because Government hasn’t done enough to foster it. To protect its citizens and provide the opportunity for justice, as you say.
    Ayn Rand would say that no one has an obligation to Government, it is entirely the other way around. I’d say–true. Rand was occasionally generous, and she felt that people should have the opportunity to make wealth for themselves and voluntarily give to those they chose. True too, to an extent, The problem with that is that if you only give to people you like or feel personal pity for, that may leave out huge segments of society that are important to your personal well-being, whether you grasp it or not. Government takes into account a broader range of people, and necessarily so.

  2. When you take the wealth from one and give it to another, for any reason at all, you are stealing. No one knows more what I need than I do. Am when government professes to be wiser than it’s citizens it is time to alter or abolish. It goes beyond theory and magical thinking it is criminal.

  3. Those are very strong words, pt. We don’t take wealth from one…we take it from all and pool it for the common good. Let me give you an example. In the ’80’s I was a counselor in a methodone clinic, I was not happy about it. Where I worked, it was kind of the equivalent of being assigned to Siberia. And these clinics were very controversial. The argument being that it’s just replacing one addiction for another. Duh. Of course it was. But I eventually realized it was worth the cost. Because for every person on methadone instead of heroin (and there are many flaws there I won’t get into), it was one less person likely to break into my house or yours and steal our TVs. This what I mean by “common good”. Given a choice, I would not choose to support an opiate addict. However, if some portion of the taxes that I pay go to support methadone clinics, I’m okay with that, because I see a benefit to me and everyone else too.
    We do not and cannot live in an isloated world. You can’t pretend you live in a castle with a moat around it. Sooner or later, the villagers will come for you with the torches and ptichforks. Communism, which I don’t like any better than you do, got one thing right: there is only so long people will put up with you being ungodly rich while they are strugglng. From their work.

  4. “We don’t take wealth from one…we take it from all and pool it for the common good”

    That my dear is socialism.


    The wealthy do not all live in isolation and should not be so demonized. We are unique among the world in charitable donations.

    Jefferson’s words in the declaration of independence are more than a notation in history to many of us. Many! And we are disgusted with the pernicious behavior of congress and the President. In order to negotiate with a thief first you must stop the stealing.

  5. If that is true, that it’s socialism, then we have been a socialist country since the founding. The minute you give the government the power to levy taxes (which the Constitution does), rather than allowing each individual to voluntarily give to the government or to other people as he or she sees fit, then you have given up part of your “rights”, if you want to call it that. That means your money can and will be used to fund programs you don’t particularly like and may even hate. So the argument is, and always will be, what the government is spending your money for. In my view, paying taxes, like voting, gives you the right to complain. But it also gives you the right to participate in a civilized society. You could always go the Ted Kozinski route. By which I primarily mean “off the grid”, not necessarily the killing people part.
    I know you better than to think you do this, but many people make the mistake of believing that socialism is equivalent to communism, which it is not, of course. Communism takes ALLthe wealth of all, and doles it out as it sees fit. The Bolshevik revolution led to inevitable corruption and discontent. They were no better the the czars, and arguably worse. There seem to be many people who think the U.S. is just one step away from becoming the Soviet Union of the 1950’s, which is just utter nonsense.

  6. Here’s an article you might find interesting. A quote from it, by conservative (!) economist Douglas Holtz-Eakin: “taxing is not a way to make any economy stronger–it’s a necessary cost of having government services”.
    Wonder why NPR didn’t filter out that conservative viewpoint 🙂 Just kidding.

  7. “If that is true, that it’s socialism, then we have been a socialist country since the founding. The minute you give the government the power to levy taxes (which the Constitution does), rather than allowing each individual to voluntarily give to the government or to other people as he or she sees fit, then you have given up part of your “rights”, if you want to call it that.”

    This is the crux of the issue of free market vs socialism. Of course a nation has to tax to maintain the liberty of it’s citizens. As long as that money is spent to secure liberty and justice for all it is a valid function for the citizens. It is when government strays into social engineering that it actually deprives its citizenry of the very freedom that they tax to secure. Because social engineering is not for the many but always for the few and it is better left to the few to find ways to help themselves than the entire citizenry. It is when legislators wrongly think they are smarter than their citizens and know best for them, and they force programs on all. And when a voting block adopts the same superior veil of moral and social superiority that fuels the legislators and corruptly keeps them in office.

    Examples abound including:
    Volstead Act=massive crime
    Welfare=destruction of dependent families
    Federal Education=unfunded and un-acheivable mandates
    Homestead Security= a profound loss of liberty
    And the big one coming down the road……….Obamacare =total chaos

    Clearly in America today legislators can’t run congress much less the country, and neither can the President.

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