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Democracy, Socialism, Communism, Fascism, and Neoconservatism

April 22nd, 2010 · No Comments · Economics, Politics

Pass this on to any drooling tea bagger you happen to see wandering down the street carrying a sign and a gun. They clearly attended a public school or a private religious school or were home schooled or spent their entire juvenile life as a truant. They do not understand the basics of comparative political systems.

Democracy, founded by the Greeks, in its modern iteration is a simple concept with numerous complexities. One often hears morons who finally got around to reading a book call in to a radio program and say, “The United States is not a Democracy. It is a Republic.” They apparently did not learn this in fourth grade because one can tell that it is a revelation to them.

The fact is that the concept of a true Democracy is much more complex than most of these bozos can handle. It takes more than a bunch of cats voting to elect a leader. They have to vote without having been enticed or influenced. The Democracy cannot have voters barred because of their sex or race or social status. The modern Democracy must be free, so a modern Democracy has no slaves. The people in a Democracy must be free from the tyranny of an oppressive majority.

A Republic is a formality. It is election by all the people, a democratic process, but an indirect election. At least in this meaning of “Republic.” A Republic could simply indicate a sovereign state. So, the fact that we are a Republic means virtually nothing. The important thing is that we are a Democracy that stands on the principle of a majority vote. In our system that majority vote is given to each state in proportion to its population. That’s all.

Capitalism is merely one form of democracy. Capitalism could also be totalitarian or a Republic or a Plutocracy. Capitalism could, in fact, be a monarchy. Capitalism merely means that the ownership of production of goods is in private hands. Thus, workers in general work for private firms and owners take the risks and reap the profits or suffer the losses. While this does not happen in a total Socialist society, it can be the economic engine of any other political system.

Socialism is a form of government in which the means of production is by and large owned by the state. There are modifications of this, but in the Soviet system it was absolute but in other societies there are partial socialist and partial capitalist themes running together. Americans, especially those who have not lived in other countries or know much about them, often consider the countries of Western Europe as socialist. They are traditionally referred to as Christian Socialist and are, in fact, capitalist societies with extended social services which some Americans refer to as either “Socialist” or “Welfare” states.

In some countries, like Sweden for example, and probably surprisingly to many American Neoconservative Republicans, a very high percentage of the wealth is in the hands of a percentage of the population that comprises less than double digits.
Communism is the ultimate extension of the theory of Socialism, where there is no private property as such and the government exclusively controls the means of production. Most people chafe at a system in which the government controls everything and individuals cannot own private property. But Communism also had one more unpopular feature and that was the concept that the workers have the right to (unlawfully) overthrow the existing form of government by force if necessary, if it is oppressive. Communism is the more militant form of Socialism.

Communism in the second half of the 20th Century was a harsh and severe system of government most often characterized by the dictatorial and horrific regime of Josef Stalin and several successors in the Soviet Union. Unfortunately for Communism, it was made the national governments of two ruthless dictatorial regimes, the Soviet Union, including its satellites, and Communist China.

Stalin’s takeover of all the Eastern European countries had less to do with Communism than it did with totalitarianism. After the third time that Russia was invaded in less than 200 years, Stalin decided to simply take over Eastern Europe as a buffer zone. Since Russia was Communist, these lands would be Communist. The effects of the Communist party in Russia and Eastern Europe were hardly less oppressive and not much different than the dominating techniques of the Nazis.

Communist goals of converting all the world’s governments into one international working-class organization caused major Western governments to react vigorously. The idea of a comintern or international governing body made Communism seem a system trying to take over the world. It did not help that both the Soviet Union and China spread their ideas most frequently using both surreptitious and overt military operations to convert countries to Communism.

Leaders of impoverished nations around the world, especially those extremely poor Colonial nations, sometimes saw Communism as a more egalitarian way to create their society. Western countries feared the rise of Communist states in their post WWII posture because of their nuclear power, belligerent attitudes and proselytizing approach to diplomacy. The established order in most countries, those at the top, feared Communism because Communist governments simply nationalized industries and transferred personal private property to the state. For Americans, and for most people in the 21st Century, this form of government is archaic and unthinkable.

Fascism is a governmental system in which there is private ownership of property but it is merely at the good grace of the state which, with corporations and the military, decides what is best for society. It has been thus far always very authoritarian, nationalist and–although this may be a coincidence–militarily belligerent. Fascism tends toward and has thus far in its most pointed examples become totalitarian, i.e. total control of all levels of government.

The examples of Fascism have not been attractive. Pre-WWII Germany, Italy and Spain all were totalitarian, oppressive regimes, causing wars and mass imprisonments and in some cases mass genocides. Fascism in Argentina resulted in many deaths and a more belligerent military posture before it was overthrown. Similar Central and South American dictatorships had similar, most unpleasant outcomes.

And now we come to the term “Neoconservative.” Neo-Conservatives. Conservatives in the United States beginning around the late 1970s were those who felt that we should reduce the size of government, leave states alone to handle their social problems themselves, primarily segregation in the South, and who felt that America should be dominant in the world in business as well as in military power. People should pay lower taxes, education should return to simple themes, and any function of government that tended to grow of its own weight and tenure should be put into the private sector to maintain its efficiency, thus lowering the cost to taxpayers.

After several Presidencies, the system morphed into something called “Neoconservatism” which was no more than failed Conservatism. Its proponents said that they sought conservative goals but did the opposite. They did not cut government size but increased it. Rather than improving the country’s fiscal situation they created a disaster of major proportions. Rather than making government more efficient so that it could run more cost-effectively, they were sloppy, negligent, and spent more on the private firms that they hired to outsource work than the government had spent.

All the while, they continued to maintain that they favored less government and reduced government. In reality they spent $11 trillion more than they took in during their 8 years in office from 2001 to 2008. While spending at a higher rate than their opposition, the Liberals, they also were more lax in regulation because of the part of their “political philosophy” that they did not neglect. The result was an economy that allowed unscrupulous businesses to run wild, defrauding citizens and creating a speculative economy that collapsed heavily in 2008. They left American citizens who voted them out of power in the worst economic conditions since 1929. They left a stock market that had lost 7,000 points, and banks failing, over 6 million homes in foreclosure and 15 million people unemployed.

So Neoconservatism is not a real theory of government like the others mentioned. It is merely a political ploy, a “big lie” as great political fabrications are called. It was designed to fool the people into voting for the Republican Party. It worked for many years. Some of its signs were similar to those of Fascist regimes, like appointing Party members to every possible positions, investigating and interrogating them before appointment to insure that they were good Neocons. They initiated politics by “scare tactic.”

Every issue became a crisis.We were told that if we did not go to war with Iraq we risked major attack. That turned out to be a lie, which every single bit of circumstantial evidence proved it to be. We were told that no one in government knew about the real terrorist attack that occurred on the morning of September 11, 2001 but we now know that a report was taken to Texas by White House staff members warning of an attack and that report was ignored.

We know that people from mining industry corporations were installed as regulators of the mines. Anti-labor activists were put into the Labor Department. A plan called “No Child Left Behind” turned out, in fact, to be an attempt to dislodge union teachers from schools all around the country. Over 90,000 oil or natural gas wells were drilled in National Park lands.

A company called Enron was allowed to commit fraud and to ruin the economy of California raising utility rates four times what they had been and bankrupting many small businesses and some large utilities. Rather than bringing private industry expertise to the post-Katrina disaster in New Orleans, they handled it so badly that it wiped out the city, became a huge multi-billion recovery program and simply left the city to die on the vine.

It quickly became apparent that, even with the support of literally 90% of corporate-hired radio hosts and commentators, and in spite of the daily relentless support of several large propaganda regimes among television networks and cable channels, the Neocon system did not work except for the very rich. After one huge tax cut the Secretary of the Treasury agreed. After the second huge tax cut, during war time, the conservative and hugely successful business executive, Paul O’Neill resigned as Secretary of Treasury, saying that he could not justify a tax cut that would result in huge deficits.

You see, it wasn’t a political philosophy that made sense to a man who ran one of the largest and most successful metals corporations the world had ever known. It wasn’t a political philosophy at all. It was merely window dressing. It was merely a hoax on the American people to loot the government. Where do you think the $11 trillion went? It went by bits and pieces, like the $12.5 billion piece to Halliburton, to Republican backers. Two wars alone cost over $3 trillion. Outsourcing that cost more than the cost of doing the same within government went to Republican backers. Private armies like Blackwater, Neocon soldiers, were hired, 120,000 in Iraq making four times what our government soldiers make, many of them hired mercenaries from former Fascist dictatorships all over the world.

The money that the wealthiest segment of taxpayers would have paid to keep the government solvent went into their pockets. When you increase government spending by 25% and cut taxes by 50% you will have—definitely will have—huge deficits. That happened under Reagan, with hundred-billion dollar deficits, year after year. Once you have finally balanced the budget again, as Clinton did, you can’t simply start all over again with huge tax cuts for the rich.

And why mention the rich? Not because they, as a class, have caused the problem, but because the Neocon transfer of wealth to the rich is simply what has happened. Without changing government by a vote of the people to do so, the Neoconservatives simply began to draw money out of the system to bankrupt it, in a way not dissimilar to what their friends on Wall Street did to the economy in 2004-2008. They changed the tax structure in a way that was not sufficient to fund their enterprises. And they knew it. Some might call that less a political theory than outright theft or fraud.

So when you talk to a tea party member or a sympathizer, and when they call the President a Communist, remind them that only the private owners of American Society, the rich bankers, are coming to take their private property–not the government. Ask the 6 million people who will lose their homes if they fear government or the bankers more. They’ll set you straight.

President Obama and previous Democratic Presidents have always held firm beliefs that more Americans should own property and thereby have more control of their economic destiny. That didn’t fit into the plans of the Neocon financiers in the Bush era of speculation and of bail-out for the banks, if everything fails. The people paid, but it was not the fault of Liberals, but of this confused term called “Neoconservatism” which seems in practice merely like Robin Hood in reverse.

It is not Socialist or Communist to try to put the adults back in charge in an economy that has been devastated by a failed “political philosophy.” No one is removing private property. The government is try to restore the individual’s right to homes, cars and other private property. After all, very few people in a Democracy can own things under a (Neoconservative) regime where they are all out of work except the rich.

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