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Monday, November 6 - 6:04pmSanction this postReply
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I don't know what my son is studying but the other day his teacher mentioned that there has never been a true communist state. Most countries that identify themselves as communist are really more of an oligarchy or dictatorial regime.  Never having heard this before my initial reaction was: So what, whether a group or collective holds power over the individual, whether a little or completely, it can be identified as some variant of communistic/socialistic society.  My suspicion is this is a way to absolve communism of the evils it has perpetrated. "No true Scotsman."



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Monday, November 6 - 6:50pmSanction this postReply
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Can you find out what the teacher's definition of a "true communist state" is?



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Tuesday, November 7 - 4:04amSanction this postReply
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That was my question to my son. He didn’t have an answer so I was wondering if anyone here had heard it.  When I heard him make the statement my mind immediately went to the countless apologists who say the atrocities committed by Christians over the centuries were done by people that weren’t true Christians. 

 

(Edited by Tim Scobey on 11/07, 4:07am)



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Tuesday, November 7 - 9:35amSanction this postReply
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If communism is defined like here and what Karl Marx expected to evolve after socialism in the distant future, then a "true communist state" is impossible. Like the definition says, communism means an absence of a state.



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Tuesday, November 7 - 7:38pmSanction this postReply
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The Wikipedia article that Merlin linked to includes this: "Communism includes a variety of schools of thought, which broadly includeMarxism, anarchism (anarchist communism) and the political ideologies grouped around both. All of these share the analysis that the current order of society stems from its economic system, capitalism..." 

 

     [t has never been an accident that anarchists and communists have so often been sleeping in the same bed.]

 

That description of communism makes it clear that all varieties of communism share the goal of ending capitalism.  Capitalism is the name of an economic system where individual make their own choices and state-enforced laws protect their rights to make those choices and keep the product of their efforts.  All of the varieties of communism are opposed to individual rights AT THEIR BASE.

 

Progressivism is one of those varieties.  It seeks to transform the entire culture, using political correctness, till Capitalism can be eliminated. 

 

Communist theorists have long claimed that communism is just about sharing - and that the very roots of the word have to do with community ownership.  But any thinking person can understand that under a capitalist system (a system where individual rights are enforced), people are free to share or not.  Under Capitalism, people are free to join communes and to share to their hearts content.  Are any of these communists opposing the use of physical force to get the sharing?  Have any communist nations evolved, or even attempted to evolve towards voluntary sharing?  There is your answer to what communism is:  A political system where the state uses force to outlaw economic choice for all individuals, deny individual rights, and is the sole owner of the means of production.  The claims about that there never has been a truely communist state are like the claims that we just haven't found the true unicorn - only horses that people thought were unicorns.



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Wednesday, November 8 - 5:39pmSanction this postReply
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30 years ago, I came across an extremely well-educated group in New York City who called themselves "orthodox Marxists". They claimed that the October 1917 Russian Revolution had failed within 6 months, and that by then "the bourgeoisie was back in the saddle." Hence they called the Soviet Union of the 1980s "capitalist". I informed them I called the America of the 1980s "communist". Talk about baffled, mutual incomprehensibility!  



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Friday, November 10 - 3:45amSanction this postReply
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I always point out that in a capitalistic society built in the vision of our founders, and with a constitutionally-structured government, any group of people are free to assemble their own "communist/socialist" utopias at any time. They just cannot force anyone into participating who isn't interested in their scheme. That's when the sputtering begins; b-b-b-but our socialist health care won't work because we need everyone to participate - people will be mean to us and not give us stuff --yada yada yada. Then I get vertigo from rolling my eyes.



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Friday, November 10 - 3:10pmSanction this postReply
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Post 6 sanctioned just for saying, "Then I get vertigo from rolling my eyes." 



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Sunday, November 12 - 12:17pmSanction this postReply
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There has never been a true capitalist society. 

 

As the Wikipedia article points out. there have been many communist societies throughout history.  I have a book about California's many utopian communities.  The teacher is just wrong. 

 

That speaks to a deeper problem with childhood: everything comes from adults - food, clothing, knowledge...  That is why the teenage and young adult years are important. They open the door to questioning everything and seeking truth. 



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Sunday, November 12 - 10:12pmSanction this postReply
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Marotta misses the point totally when he writes:

 

There has never been a true capitalist society. 

 

By what standard?  "Blank-out", as Rand used to say.  What does his assertion have to do with the progressive's claim that there has never been a true communist state?  Blank-out.
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Then Marotta decides this all about a "deeper problem with childhood..."  He writes:

 

That speaks to a deeper problem with childhood: everything comes from adults - food, clothing, knowledge...  That is why the teenage and young adult years are important. They open the door to questioning everything and seeking truth. 

 

That just makes no sense. 
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Progressives are the ones who defend communism (indirectly) by claiming that the evil acts and horrifying results from the communist states like those controlled by Stalin, Mao, Po Pot and others aren't really communism.  And the claim is that if communism were 'properly' practiced it would be good - it would be the utopia that Marx and others promised.

 

Marotta then claims that there have been "utopian communities in California" and the teacher is just wrong.  Does Marotta support communism as practiced in those communities?  That is what it sounds like.  Does Marotta fail to understand that a "utopian community" voluntarily functioning in a free society is NOT the same as forced communism under a communist state?
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Marotta, as an anarchist, or former anarchist, or whatever his political position is has shown a  fondness for progressive talking points in the past.  And he implies a kind of moral relativity argument (Because, he claims, there has never been a true capitalist nation which somehow means that the teacher was wrong and there have been perfect communist nations.  The form of his argument is that by pointing at utopian communities in California (but not communist nations), that he has discredited some argument or another.  Me, I think his 'thinking' is too muddled to treat seriously.



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