The Alt-Left and The Alt-Right Are The Same People (or social justice is the same as white nationalism)

We are seeing an increase in mass shootings in the last few years. Republicans blamed it on the policies and behavior of Obama, Democrats are blaming it on the policies and behavior of Trump. Both are right, both are wrong. What people don’t seem to realize is that the alt-left groups, like feminism, BLM, LGBT and the “social justice” movement, are the same people as the alt-right groups like the white nationalists. How can this possibly be? They seem to be bitter enemies. Often clashing in the streets with encounters ending in bloodshed and property damage. It is true they play for different teams and there is a bitter rivalry between them, but the teams themselves are in the same league.

Aren’t groups like feminism, BLM, LGBT and Social Justice leftwing groups advocating for their groups and white nationalists ultra-rightwing? Well, yes, but only if you look at it from one perspective. From the perspective of an average person, both groups are leftist. All of these groups are designed to advocate for their particular group identity. People who do not identify with their group identity are looked at as the enemy. In all of these groups the “we” is much more important the “me”.

To illustrate my point let’s look at the chart I’ve made. A little background may be needed to understand this chart. At the heart of all of this is the desire for freedom and liberty. The question becomes how do we get there. When you peel back all the layers of our lives, things like our families, friends, religions, politics eventually you get to the foundations of your belief system. Essentially, what makes you believe what you believe. The question, with regards to freedom and liberty, at the base of it all is,” Do I own myself”. While most everything in your life falls on a spectrum, this does not. This is a binary choice that defines your axiomatic truth.

On the left side of the chart you have collectivism, you can also use “social”, to describe this side of the chart. On the right you have Individualism, you can also use “personal”, to describe this side of the chart.

If you answer “yes” to the question of self-ownership, then you also, by definition, also own your property, your rights and your justice. These things belong to you as an individual. This means that you can buy and sell your property as you see fit. Rights are universal and every person on earth owns these rights for themselves. This means that you can buy and sell, or give away your rights as you see fit. Justice is personal. This means that you and you alone are responsible for your actions. You are punished for crimes as an individual and you are rewarded for accomplishments in the same way.

If you answer “no” to the question of self-ownership, it means that you cannot own property. Property is owned socially, or by society at large and divided by whatever mechanism the community sees fit. Rights are social, meaning that the community dictates who has rights and who does not. Generally, this is decided by creating a scale of privilege and oppression. Rights are taken from groups that have more privilege and given to those with less privilege. In this way, the most oppressed people have the most rights. This is done to balance the scale and make everyone as equal as possible. There is social justice. This means that the groups formed in this hierarchy of privilege and oppression are wholly responsible for both crime and accomplishments. You might have heard people say things like, “all white people are racist”, or “all straight people are homophobic”, or “black people invented the…”. In short, there are no individuals, only your group identity.

These core belief systems give rise to the line at the top of the chart. This is the political layer, where your core beliefs are put into action. If you answer “yes”, you tend toward capitalism. If you answer “no”, you tend toward socialism. These are broad terms that have many variations. Communism, for instance, is just a subset of socialism, the most extreme version. Anarcho-capitalism is the most extreme form of capitalism. If you think of communism as being at the extreme left of the line with 100% collectivist worldview and anarcho-capitalism at the extreme right with 100% individualist worldview, then what is in the middle? It would stand to reason that it would tend to be 50% communal and 50% individual right? In political terms you could say that it is a system where the property is owned by individuals, but controlled by society, or the other way around, where the property is owned by society, but controlled by private individuals. Well, there is such a system, it’s called national socialism in the first case and crony-capitalism in the second. Both have the common term, fascism. This is area of the chart with the blue rectangle.

That’s right! Fascism is only extreme right when viewed from the lens of a socialist. For a capitalist, fascism is an extreme left position. Social justice groups, like the feminist movement, BLM and LGBT, are using the same worldview as the white nationalists are. Collectivism. Sure, they are way more extreme leftists than white nationalists are, but the outcome is always the same. When Antifa calls the KKK Alt-right, they are basically admitting that they use the same worldview.

Why is there a rise in violence in recent years? It’s because collectivism always leads to violence. 100% of the time. Why? Because of that pesky hierarchy of privilege and oppression. The weak make the rules and get to impose them on the strong. The oppressed get the rights and justice until they become the oppressors and the cycle starts over. There is a constant competition for the title of most oppressed. Couple that feeling of constant dread of being deemed “privileged”, with the knowledge that you can do nothing about it because you don’t own your rights, or yourself. At the end of the day, all you have left is violence.

So why is this all happening? One of the main reasons is that the idea of social justice has been adopted by major universities, media outlets and government. The concept of privilege has been almost universally adopted as true in these places, although there is no basis in fact for it. White men are starting to feel oppressed by these other social groups and are fighting back. See what I did there? “white men are starting to feel oppressed…”. As if there is a single entity called “white men”. It’s really hard not to get caught up in the language of the leftist.

How can we fix this? In short, education. We need to make sure our children understand their self-ownership. Once they get to college it’s almost too late. We all need to think deeper than republican/democrat. Get to the essence of why you believe what you believe. Is your core belief system in line with your politics? You can’t be a socialist if you think you own yourself. You can’t be a capitalist if you believe in social justice. If you are an individual, you have to realize that feminism is bad for women, BLM is bad for black people and LGBT is bad for gay people. If you can’t be that honest with yourself, how are you supposed to teach anyone else? By all means, use the chart above to help you if you need it. If you have questions, talk to someone you trust. Talk to me if you have no one else. I’ll do my best to help you.

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Why Can’t We Communicate?

It seems as though the war of ideas between the social justice warrior (SJW’s) and the anti-SJW’s is coming to a head. At least on social media platforms like Youtube, the anti’s have won. On college campuses and in government, SJW’s won a long time ago. This would make sense because social media is available for any voice who wants to join the conversation. College and government is just not like that. They are both sheltered from the real world. Social media is a more interesting beast. A better description of what is happening on social media would be to say SJW’s vs. The Real World.

Right up front, I have to admit that I’m in camp “real world”. It seems obvious to me that the majority of positions held by the SJW crowd is not only wrong, but dangerously so. It would be easy to say that I have yet to hear any convincing evidence showing concepts like, “patriarchy”, “systematic oppression”, or “privilege” are even real, much less happening. I’ve written several times as to why I think they are not, and my opinion as to what I think those things really are. But here’s the problem, SJW’s absolutely think those concepts are real. For real, real. It is virtually impossible for most people who advocate for social justice to even entertain the thought that what they believe may be wrong. Why can’t we communicate? I have an idea as to why, and I will try to be as neutral as possible, with the reader’s understanding that I am an anti-SJW.

Have you noticed how anyone who disagrees with an SJW is called a Nazi? Then the person being called a Nazi says something like, “you’re the real Nazi!”? Well, this got me thinking. Picture a line moving from left to right. The extreme left is labelled communism. The extreme right of the line is labelled anarchy. Anarchy involves zero government, rights are personal. As you move left, the government plays a larger and larger part in your life until you get to the extreme left, communism, where government controls 100% of your life. At this point rights are communal. You can find the different political philosophies along this line. Next to anarchy is libertarianism, then republican, then democrat. From the other end, next to communism you have socialism, then ancillary socialist like philosophies such as syndicalism, then progressivism. What about the mid-line? Just to the left of the mid-line you would have a system where the means of production are owned by the government but controlled by corporations. Just to the right of the mid-line you have a system where the means of production are owned by the private segment of society, but controlled by the government. This describes two sides of the same coin…fascism.

Now picture the line from above with a concrete wall, with barbed wire running over the top where fascism goes. Social justice is solidly on the side of communism, communal rights, group ownership, etc. When they look right, all they see is the wall of fascism in the way of progress. Anti-SJW’s are on the whole, solidly on the side of the individual and support individual rights, ownership, etc. When they look left they see a wall of fascism in the way of progress.

I believe this is why it is so hard to communicate with each other. An SJW sees things like race through the lens of collective power, whereas on the other side, we see race and color more as demographics describing individuals. For example, you might hear an SJW say that the black experience is one of systematic oppression by white people. Therefore, all white people are racist and all black people are oppressed. An anti-SJW would argue that there is no such thing as the “black experience” because every black person goes through life individually and their experience is their own. Also, “white people” do not make laws or the system. Elected individuals might be overwhelmingly white, but those people are not all people. All people are subject to the same laws as all other people. To an SJW, you are just part of a group, not a person per se. Interestingly, they acknowledge that most people are part of several groups and try to reconcile the concept of being, for instance, both a woman and black with the concept of intersectionality. This is where all your group identifiers intersect to tell you how oppressed or privileged you are. Anti-SJW’s see an individual and everything about that individual are just adjectives describing that person, for instance, you are a black, gay, obese woman. The important part of you is the “you” part, not the adjectives that describe you.

The non-partisan section is over. So What’s the solution? This is the hard part. Due to the nature of individualists, we tend to be much more open to dialogue than those on the left. Leftists tend to make anyone who disagrees an “other”. We tend to get auto-blocked by the major SJW leaders. For this reason, I would start small. A small Facebook or twitter discussion, or one on one. Be courteous and understanding. Do your best to explain the concepts I outlined above. If they are receptive, great. If not, bid them a good day and move on. I think we have an excellent opportunity with women or people in the gay community. Social justice seems, to me at least, to be in direct conflict with a woman, or a gay or trans person’s personal interest. Especially now that it seems Muslims are seen as more oppressed than either of those groups. If an SJW does take an interest in what you have to say, run with it. Sure, it may be a waste of time in the end, but at least they escaped their bubble for a few minutes and heard your point of view. None of this is easy, but we can’t give up.

Free Speech Through the Eyes of a Social Justice Warrior

Modern liberals hold themselves to be the defenders of civil liberties, freedom of expression, speech, etc. You can see them constantly in the streets exercising that freedom. Marching and protesting and rioting to defend their freedom from whatever boogeyman wants to take it away from them today. But are they really for free speech and expression? I submit to you that to today’s left, or the social justice movement, free speech is the most dangerous idea possible.

To understand the danger of free speech to a social justice warrior(SJW), you have to understand where they are coming from. These people are piggybacking off the free speech movement of the anti-war 1960’s. This movement started at the University of California, Berkeley, where students marched against the war and for civil rights. Today, students at Berkeley are rioting and protesting to prevent people they don’t like speaking at their school. Yet they still fancy themselves champions of free speech. How is this possible? In the book 1984, by George Orwell, this was called doublethink. This means holding and believing two opposing beliefs at the same time. Like championing free speech while trying to suppress free speech.

Only an sjw can really know the answer for sure, but if I had to guess I would say that they use the same thought process for speech that they do for human classification. It’s a thought process based in cultural Marxism where there is believed to be a hierarchy of privilege and oppression. Those at the top of the hierarchy are privileged and those at the bottom are oppressed. This is also an example of doublethink. Where you advocate for equality by oppressing those above you on the hierarchy ladder. Equality by oppression. This allows an sjw to be racist, bigoted and homophobic while at the same time claiming to help these same people. As long as the person you hate is above you on the ladder, it’s ok. For context, I’ll give you examples. Sjw’s generally agree that white people are at the top of the ladder, so it’s ok to be racist against them, to hate them, to cheer their destruction. It’s not racist at all you see, because you can only be racist to those more oppressed than you are. Doublethink. As we’ve seen by recent Islamic attacks against gay people, sjw’s put gay people higher on the ladder than brown people, so you can’t blame Muslims for killing gays, that’s oppressive. It’s ok for Muslims to be homophobic, since most Muslims are brown. It is not ok for Christians to be homophobic, because most Christians are white. Doublethink.

So let’s apply this logic to speech. How does someone justify advocating and suppressing speech at the same time? To a regular person there is just speech. Sometimes you don’t like what another person has to say. Sometimes speech is deeply offensive. Sometimes speech can be mean spirited, or crude, or funny, or uplifting. It’s all just speech. A social justice warrior classifies speech in a similar way that they classify people. There is free speech, or speech they approve of. There is hate speech, or speech they do not approve of. Hate speech, therefore, is outside the bounds of free speech. An sjw will use the hierarchy ladder to classify speech as either free or hateful based on who is speaking and about what. If a person who holds a certain place on the ladder is speaking negatively about something that might affect a person lower on the ladder, that is hate speech. A white man speaking about the dangers of illegal immigration for instance, is hate speech. A thin woman speaking about the dangers of women being overweight would also qualify as hate speech because thin women have more privilege than fat women. This is why comedians are protested, conservative speakers are protested, and anyone who does not subscribe to social justice is protested. Every time they hear a person with differing views it reaffirms to the sjw that there is oppression in the world that needs to be fought against.

If you wonder why these people are so angry all the time, why they need safe spaces, why they get triggered, just imagine how life must be for them. Literally, and I mean literally, everything they see, touch or encounter is sexist, bigoted, racist, xenophobic, homophobic, or some sort of “ism”, that they must fight against. This is because they live in a capitalist country. To them, the entire system is set up specifically to oppress everyone who is not a white male. They live in the twilight zone, an alternate reality than the rest of us. They live in a place where boogeymen are everywhere and you can’t get away from them. I would want a safe space too. In my opinion, it a borderline mental disorder. To think that a young person can get a degree in social justice is frightening. It’s like sending yourself to a re-education camp for brainwashing. Once the brainwashing sets in, it’s almost impossible to reverse the effects.

The Amusing Notion Of “Fake News”

I must say that in regards to the “fake news” labels being used to call out news outlets that you don’t like is very amusing to me. Especially so when it now seems to fall upon presidents and other government officials to determine what is and is not “fake news”. It’s one thing for Facebook or twitter to screen out what they believe to be fake news, after all, beyond the social platforms they own, they don’t have much of an impact on your life. It is a different thing entirely to have your government decide what is and is not actual news.

The problem we now see can be put squarely on the shoulders of do-gooder progressives. The hypocrisy, arrogance and plain shortsightedness of these people and their ideology never ceases to amaze me. This is an ideology that, simply put, believes that the government is the best, most efficient way of spreading the most good to the most people. So, in this idea of ultimate altruism, they try to cede the most amount of power possible to the state (federal government). I really do think that these people are taking actions that they believe will help people. They are not villains in this story, which makes it doubly frustrating.

To combat those who do not share the notion that the government should be the giver of all things, progressives tend to, instead of debating in the arena of ideas, create a label to put on these people or groups. Labels like, homophobic, xenophobic, sexist, racist, bigoted, etc. In this case, they came up with “fake news”. They slapped this label onto any news site deemed to be biased toward the right politically. In the minds of the social media oligarchs, these dissenting news outlets cost Hillary Clinton the election, so must be stopped. This term was picked up by president Obama and he slung it towards places like Fox News, to the delight of progressives everywhere. Congress even got on board with the Countering Foreign Propaganda and Disinformation Act of 2016. Signed into law just before Christmas. This bill concentrates on foreign interventions in our news. It doesn’t take much of a leap to imagine the law spreading to domestic news sources and alternative media.

The arrogance of these progressives shows when they create these labels and pass these laws thinking that they know best what people should be exposed to. They also are as arrogant as to think that ceding all this power to their government will only help them and hurt the people who disagree with them.

Maybe the shortsightedness stems from the arrogance, but it is beyond me how many times I hear that once this progressive is in office it will be impossible for any other party to ever win the presidency. This position is just not rational. In fact, it is almost always the opposite. So, the power collected by your president, always gets transferred to the next president. Obama has been the most imperial president of my lifetime, largely because the congress let him. His end-arounds of congress have come to the delight of progressives everywhere because he championed their cause by and large. Do you really believe that President Trump will just give that power back to congress? To the people? You are diluted, you are irrational, you are arrogant and shortsighted. This happens Every. Single. Time.

Finally, my progressive friend, you are a hypocrite. You cannot cheer when President Obama calls Fox News fake, and cry when President Trump calls CNN fake. You gave him this power. Freely. Cheerfully, even. You constantly advocate for this huge, do everything for everyone government, against the wishes of literally half the people’s will who live in this country. You tell them to sit down and shut up because you are smarter and know what’s best. Now, when the other party is in power, you protest, riot, boycott, cry and whine like petulant children who don’t get their way.

The moral of this story is that you should not give so much power away to any government that you cannot live freely under a government you may oppose.

Feminism (and Social Justice) Are Not About Equality

I have heard a lot of talk lately from people, really smart people even, who defend feminism as a movement advocating for the equality of women. They all love to go to the dictionary and read the actual definition of feminism. Fem·i·nism noun: feminism: the advocacy of women’s rights on the grounds of political, social, and economic equality to men. To be honest, this is a pretty weak definition because there are more than one type of equality. Depending on the lens in which you look at the world, that definition could mean vastly different things, polar opposite things even. Not to mention that almost mainstream feminists reject this definition, (until they are debating an anti-feminist and it becomes convenient to use it), and hold that there is no set in stone definition of today’s modern 3rd wave feminist movement. For the purposes of this writing, let’s just stick to the dictionary definition. I don’t intend to imply that the definition of feminism is wrong, just the worldview behind the movement itself.

What do I mean when I say “the lens in which you look at the world”, or “worldview”. They mean the same thing. The structure by which our societies are built, shape in a large way how we see the world. Worldview. In modern times, the two most prominent worldviews that shape western society have been socialism and capitalism. In olden times we could throw monarchy and theocracy in there, but those aren’t major players in western society anymore. I may get to them later though. Aren’t these just economic systems though? What does buying and selling stuff have to do with how we view equality? Well, based on which system the society you live in chooses, a government is formed and laws are written. These laws should, if done properly, protect the rights of people.

So what’s the difference on how socialism and capitalism look at equality? In America, our society has been built with the worldview of capitalism. We think of equality in terms of equal opportunity. This means that the government has one set of laws that apply to everyone in the same way. What you make of your life is your choice. Every citizen has the same opportunity to follow their dreams as every other citizen under the law. Yes, some will succeed while others fail. Yes, some have an advantage based on a multitude of factors. No one has access to laws that give them any advantage over another person. Capitalist societies use terms like egalitarian to describe equality.

In the socialist worldview, places like the old Soviet Union or modern Venezuela, the concept of equality is more in the line of equality of outcome. This means that the laws will favor people who have less over people who have more in an effort to make everyone more equal in what they have, compared to what everyone else has. To do this the government must have some way of determining who the laws should favor. The most popular way to determine who is privileged and who is not today is through a philosophy called Critical Theory, the Frankfurt School or sometimes Cultural Marxism. It takes privilege from those who need it less and grants privilege to those who need it more to create a balance of equal outcome in society.

Leaders in the modern feminist movement, as well as the larger social justice movement, have embraced the socialist worldview and developed a system of hierarchy, sometimes called the “progressive stack” to determine who is privileged and who is not. The stack itself goes something like: 1. Race 2. Heteronormativity 3. Gender 4. Sexuality 5. Ability 6. Class 7. Religion. The group with the most privilege using this hierarchy would be white, cis-gendered, male, straight, able bodied, rich, Christian. The devil incarnate. It’s hard to say who would be at the bottom of the list because there is a constant fight for who can claim the status of most oppressed. I’ve written before on Social Justice Warriors, and Why Feminism Fails.

Ultimately, the reason the social justice and 3rd wave feminism movements fail everywhere except college campuses, is because in western countries, women do enjoy political, social and economic equality to men. In fact, women enjoy more protection in many areas of the law. Women are generally given less jail time for the same crimes and child custody and divorce laws favor women, for instance. Feminists cling to myths like the gender wage gap where women supposedly make $.77 for every dollar a man makes for doing the same job. A myth that has been debunked dozens of times. Feminists don’t care that women work less hours, take more time off and generally quit working earlier, they just want them to make the same amount of money no matter what. Equality of outcome. Not equal opportunity. They cling to myths like the 1 in 5 sexual assault on college campus for women, which has also been debunked several times over. This study was debunked by the very person who created the myth in the first place. Doesn’t matter.

There are, in fact, places in this world that could use feminism. These are places that still rely on monarchy and theology as worldviews. These are places that take part in female genital mutilation, openly value women less than men by law and generally treat women as property rather than people. You will rarely see a modern feminist criticize these countries or their culture and practices. Islam is lower than Christianity on the scale, you see, so they are less privileged and more oppressed than all these social justice/feminist keyboard warriors and therefore can’t be criticized. Because of this it doesn’t matter that women who are raped get stoned while the man who raped her gets a slap on the wrist. It doesn’t matter that gays get thrown off buildings for being gay. It doesn’t matter that Christians get beheaded for being Christian.

I’m not a feminist because I don’t believe in their version of equality. I believe what is good for everyone regardless of race, herteronormativity, gender, Sexuality, ability, class or religion is the freedom of equal opportunity. Free markets make for a free people. Socialism has failed everywhere it has been tried. I have hopes that the 4th wave of feminism embraces the free market and they see the fallacy of the segregation and regressive laws they are supporting. High hopes, low expectations.

Is “Democratic Socialism” Different Than Plain Old Socialism

I hate to keep harping on this topic and hopefully I won’t have to as Bernie Sanders becomes less and less likely to win the Democratic nomination. It is quite apparent that many people, mostly under 35, think that “Democratic Socialism” is a new thing, maybe a more compassionate and modern take on the socialism of old that has been responsible for the deaths of hundreds of millions of people in the last century. Maybe the Bernie Sanders socialism takes all the good things out and throws away all the bad things? Let’s just see about that.

As a comparison between old world socialism and Bernie Sanders socialism, I’ll use the 1936 Constitution of the U.S.S.R. and various parts of BernieSander.com and other Bernie Sanders websites. If you remember in my previous blog on socialism, I explained the difference between capitalism and socialism. I think it’s only fair to point out that socialism is not inherently evil. It is a political system devised with the best intentions, I’m sure. Socialism advocates for the very poor people that, in the end, suffer at its hands. This is because of a very simple principle, as it turns out. The cornerstone of freedom and prosperity is the right to own things. Sounds simple right? How can you pin 100 million deaths due to starvation and mass murder on the right to own things? Well, in socialism, the cornerstone of the philosophy, what really makes it work is that individuals can’t own anything. The state allows citizens to own personal property, like their clothes and maybe a home, but stuff you would use to make money, called the means of production, including your building, machinery and all the other things you would need to run a business, are owned by the workers and more generally, the government. It stands to reason that if an individual can’t own the means of production, then they can’t really own anything.

That’s a bold claim. So how can I say that? Well, take a quick look. I think we would all agree that we own our own bodies right? My thoughts, what I’m good at, nobody can take away. So far so good, I hope. I also own my time, because I can choose to use my time here on earth however I choose. Good, bad or ugly. Let’s take that a step further and say when I trade my time, thoughts or talents for things like money or food, I also own those things I gain in the trade. Stated differently, if I trade my time by working, for money, since I own my time, I then must also own the money. By this logic, I can also truly own things by trading that money which I own for other things which I must also own. So far I don’t think many people would disagree with me. Even the Soviet Constitution agrees with me so far. Here’s where I must depart from socialism, and why in that system a person really doesn’t own anything.

This is a line of logic based on the socialist system:

  • I buy a home. Do I own it? Yes
  • I buy a printing press. Do I own it? Yes
  • I buy a typewriter. Do I own it? Yes
  • I start a home based newspaper with myself as the sole employee. Do I own it? Yes
  • Sales increase and I need help, so I hire a few employees. Do I still own my business? No, the employees take ownership of the means of production.
  • Do I still own the typewriters? No, they are part of the business.
  • Do I still own the printing press? No, they are part of the business.
  • Do I still own the home? No, it is part of the business.
  • If I purchased those things with money I gained by trading my time and talent, how can I say I own my time and talent? I can’t.
  • If I don’t own my time and talent, do I own myself? No

With this simple illustration you can see that in a socialist system you not only can’t own things, you don’t own yourself. Your time, talents and treasures are effectively owned by the state government. In socialism the collective group is more important than the individual. This system is enforced by workers unions and cooperatives that are organized by the state. These entities take ownership away from the person who started the business and give it to the workers in those unions and cooperatives. The state dictates the wages based on the income of the business to ensure everyone gets an equal share. This is outlined in the Soviet Constitution I linked to above in the section about “The organization of Society“. Just to recap, in the old socialist system the government, through unions and cooperatives takes over your business, dictates your wages and hours worked by the employees.

What about Bernie Sanders? Well in fact, he absolutely does believe in union and cooperative employee ownership of business. Dictated through government mandates. He absolutely does believe in government dictated wages for employees. Under the guise of income inequality, a socialist mantra, he proposes to steal from the rich and give to the poor, dictate the minimum wage, which is arbitrarily set by government bureaucrats. Class warfare, pitting the rich against the poor, is a classic socialist tactic. Bernie calls the rich the 1% and the poor the 99%, in the old socialist system they called the rich the bourgeoisie and the poor the proletariat. Same exact thing. Create a boogeyman to fight, divide the people, making it easier to control everyone.

How did the old socialist system deal with the needs of the people? In chapter X of the Soviet Constitution, it outlines the “Fundamental Right and Duties of Citizens“. This is mostly a list of positive rights, with a few negative rights thrown in at the end: freedoms of speech, press, assembly and street processions and demonstrations. The positive rights include: the right to a job, leisure time (set workday and paid vacations), free healthcare and social security, free education from elementary to college and vocational school, paid maternity leave for women along with free daycare for their children and the right to join trade unions and cooperative associations.

If any of that sounds familiar, that’s because you have heard it before. Bernie Sanders thinks you have the right to a job, free healthcare and social security, free education from elementary to college, 12 weeks of paid maternity leave for women and expand public unions and grow cooperative businesses.

In chapter X of the Soviet Constitution, not only did they outline workers’ rights, but also the duties they were expected to perform. This is crucial to socialism. Everyone likes the rights because they benefit, but in the end the state has to have a way to provide all those benefits and therefor has to require that the citizens do their part. In the case of 1936 Soviet Union people were required to work, unemployment was illegal. If you did not have a job, a job would be designated to you. If you don’t work, you are an enemy of the state. Military service is mandatory, if you do not serve you are an enemy of the state. If you break any rules, you are an enemy of the state. You have freedom of speech, but if you speak out against the state, you are an enemy of the state. There is freedom of the press, but the state controls the press. There is freedom of assembly, which is state controlled. This is the ugly part of socialism, the part Bernie Sanders won’t tell you about. Without the Capitalist notion of competition and market incentives, a void is created that can only be filled by force.

This is the downfall of socialism and why it has never really worked anywhere it has been tried. It all stems from ownership of things. When a person does not own things, that person does not care as much about those things as when they do own them. Think about things in your life. Do you treat public restrooms as nicely as you treat your own bathroom at home? If you have rented a car, do you care as much about that car as you do your own? When you win a gift card in a contest do you spend that money as wisely as you spend your hard earned money? If you are honest, the answers are all probably no. That does not make you a bad person, just a bad socialist. There has been no system in the history of the world that has propelled people into health, happiness and prosperity like capitalism has. This is because capitalism gets around the problem of incentive by acknowledging the natural right to ownership. When you own it, you have an incentive to take care of it. As we drift closer and closer to a socialist state, we will also go the way of the old Soviet Union.

At the very least, you can at least now see that there is very little, if any, difference between the Democratic Socialism proposed by Bernie Sanders and that of WW2 era Soviet Union. To be fair to Bernie, he’s not the only one with this ideology. He’s just honest enough to admit it. Always vote for freedom.

The Problem With Corporations

“There once was a time in history when the limitation of governmental power meant increasing liberty for the people. In the present day the limitation of governmental power, of governmental action, means the enslavement of the people by the great corporations, who can only be held in check through the extension of governmental power.”

– Theodore Roosevelt

I’ve seen this meme, or some variation, floating around social media a lot this week. I guess it’s supposed to prove that Bernie Sanders is right and we need the government to control all these out of control corporations that control the government. I am assuming that it is supposed to carry more weight because Teddy Roosevelt was a republican, so republicans must think what he says makes sense. Well it doesn’t. It reeks of 100 year old garbage, said by a garbage president, and would only make sense to people who don’t bother to think about the words they read beyond the mouth that those words came from. In other words, a typical Bernie Sanders supporter.

So what’s so wrong with this statement? Let’s break it into its parts to find out.

The first sentence is ok. There once was a time in history when the limitation of governmental power meant increasing liberty for the people. ” That makes sense. When you limit the power of the government, the people under that government are freer. That is to say, a less powerful government would have less authority to make rules that would affect your life.

The second sentence is the problem. “In the present day the limitation of governmental power, of governmental action, means the enslavement of the people by the great corporations, who can only be held in check through the extension of governmental power.” This is a nonsensical statement. To explain why we first have to understand what a corporation is and does, generally, and the part the government plays in the role of a corporation.

A corporation is an independent legal entity owned by the people who have invested money into the business. These people are called shareholders. Usually, there are a main group of people that decide which direction to take the business of the corporation in order to make the most money for the shareholders. These people are called the board of directors. When people sue corporations, they are not suing the shareholders or even the board of directors, they are suing the actual corporation, which is legally considered a person. Some people have a problem with this, I don’t. The goal of a corporation is to make money for its shareholders. No more, no less. They have a self-interest in making the government work for them and they are very good at doing just that. I have a huge problem with that.

A government is wholly responsible for the existence of a corporation. Governments rely on experts in various areas of life for the purpose of regulating commerce for a variety of purposes. Since the government is not an expert at anything really, it makes sense that they would rely on bankers to draft banking regulations, and manufacturers to write regulations for manufacturers and farmers to make farming regulations. Of course, the experts writing the regulations have an interest in writing them in such a way as to make competition from new ideas easier to battle. New business regulations are easy to afford if you are already rich, it’s the little guy with a great idea that will have trouble getting off the ground due to these regulations. On top of these regulations, governments pass laws allowing people to copyright and trademark their ideas so that no one else is able to use them to improve on the products or ideas being protected by the government. The truth is that without government corporations would not exist.

So why the second sentence in Teddy’s quote nonsensical? Well, because without corporations the government could still function as it does today, but without the government corporations could not function as they do today. Corporations, at the end of the day, just want to sell you stuff. They can’t force you to buy their products unless a government helps them to create a monopoly, like with your internet/cable providers or your healthcare options. At the end of the day, you can tell the corporation no. With governments, they are able to write laws that force you to act in a certain way and to deem your behavior illegal, even when you are not hurting others. If you tell the government no, bad things will happen to you.

I ask you, which entity is more dangerous? The one with the power to control your life or the one that wants to sell you stuff? Is it a rational position to say that governmental policies have made corporations too powerful, so we need more governmental policies to make them less powerful? Wouldn’t a simpler solution be to eliminate the governmental policies that made them too powerful in the first place?

If it is a true statement that when a government is smaller people have more freedom, then making the government bigger to deal with a problem strictly created by the government cannot by definition make you freer and to the contrary, will make you less free. The truth is that you have much more control over the corporation than you do over your government. You vote for an American president once every 4 years, an American senator once every 6 years and an American congressman once every 2 years. We vote for and against corporations on an almost constant basis with our dollars. Corporations fear you more than your government does and it’s not even close.

When you hear politicians speak about the problems with big business controlling the government, listen to make sure their solutions are not making government bigger. When they start sentences with: “We will make those corporations…” what they really mean is that “We will make the government more powerful.” When the government gets bigger corporations get more powerful, no matter what they tell you. Who do you think is going to write all those anti-corporation laws?