Bryan Caplan (via @JonahNRO) asks:
…”Is there any socialist analog of Liberty Fund?” Is there any leftist charity whose chief mission is to organize small seminars where the participants read and discuss classic political writings?
The answer is simple: sure! They’re called “American Commies.” Small seminars where people talk about their favorite Commie writers is about as high as those Commie idiots can reasonably aspire, organizationally speaking.
[UPDATE] Welcome, Instapundit readers: also, to quote a (Democratic) friend of mine, when it comes to whether it’s stupid-or-evil to quote Stalin… embrace the healing power of ‘and,’ my brothers and sisters.
…pretty much by definition. Communism is by its nature an international movement that rejects the fostering and nurturing of individual national identities in favor of some nebulous transnational ‘class’ struggle: there is no place in the orthodox version of the faith for anything less than eventual world revolution. Although I suppose that you could decide that only a particular racial/ethnic/political group deserved the dubious benefits of Marxism-Leninism: thus creating a sort of national socialism…
…Oh. Right. Commies hate being reminded of that little detail of 20th Century history. Anyway, here’s the video of the Russians looking at Communism in NYC; I admit some admiration at the sight (or more accurately, non-sound) of the cameramen not breaking down in helpless laughter throughout.
PS: Marxism is intellectualism for stupid people – and, believe me: if you’ve got books by Stalin in your library and you’re using those books to look for ideas… yes, you are a stupid person.
Via Instapundit comes this surprising op-ed from the New York Times that admits that the People’s Republic of China’s ‘Great Leap Forward’ caused truly frightening numbers of deaths: looking at the actual source material, its author is now estimating a death toll of 45 million (50% more than previous estimates). That works out to about 6.5% of its population, based on the 1960 census: to put that in perspective, the equivalent for 2010-era USA would be 20.15 million, or just over the entire population of New York State.
Now, this op-ed is not surprising because said famine (which was largely deliberate) is unique in the annals of world Communism: it’s not. The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics had deliberate famines in the Ukraine in the 1930s and a general one just after World War II. The Khmer Rouge of Democratic Kampuchea likewise had a general one in the 1970s, as did the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea in the 1990s. Half the famines in Africa over the last fifty years involved either civil wars started by Marxists, or started against them. In short, it’s long been known that the only thing that Communism is good at is in turning large numbers of live peasants into large numbers of dead ones. That’s because – as I have noted before – Marxism is intellectualism for stupid people; it tends to attract the sort who can’t understand that an economic system that cannot feed its own population reliably has failed at the game of Life. Literally. Continue reading Yet another reminder: Communism kills people.