The Enduring Power of Socialism

Collectivist rust never sleeps

The Economist marked the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall by observing that there was “so much gained, so much to lose.” As the world celebrates the collapse of communism, who would have imagined that in less than one generation we would witness a resurgence of socialism throughout Latin America and even hear the word socialist being used to describe policies the United States?

We relegated socialism to the “dustbin of history,” but socialism never actually died and in many ways it has actually gained influence. This may sound reactionary, even McCarthyist—but only until we understand socialism the way socialists understand it.

Yes, socialist economic ideas went out of fashion, but socialism has always been more than just economics. We tend to equate socialism with communism, Marxist revolutionaries, and state ownership of industry. But socialism is a much broader vision of the person, society, equality, and what it means to be free.

Karl Marx’s collaborator, Friedrich Engels, saw three major obstacles to the socialist vision: private property, religion, and “this present form of marriage.” Also central to socialist thought is a secular and materialist vision of the world that espouses relativism, sees everything politically, and locates genuine community in the state and not in families, churches or voluntary organizations.

The fall of communism and two decades of globalization did not extinguish socialist hopes. The tactics changed, but the goals remained. Proponents of socialism traded in revolution for the gradualism of the Fabian socialists who encouraged use of democratic institutions to achieve socialist goals. They replaced political radicals like Lenin and Castro with the cultural Marxism of Theodor Adorno or Antonio Gramsci, who called for a “long march through the institutions” of Western culture.

This is the pedigree of Saul Alinsky, Bill Ayers, and the various sixties revolutionaries who now inhabit positions of cultural influence throughout the West. We are seeing the fruit of their efforts: socialist visions of family, religion, art, community, commerce, and politics pervade the culture. (from acton.org)

Bonus links:
Summary of Saul Alinsky's 'Rules for Radicals'
• More Saul Alinsky stories: here
'Rules for Radicals' at amazon.com

Related video: U.S. Welcomes Socialism

Valerie Jarrett shafted by HBO

Racialist Obamunists sickened, enraged by editorial slight

A very good source tells me that African-American friends of the Obamas in Chicago and Washington are steamed over the editing of the campaign documentary By the People, which aired on HBO last week. The documentary team was granted extraordinary behind-the-scenes access to the Obamas and their staffers and friends.

Senior adviser Valerie Jarrett and close friend and informal adviser Marty Nesbitt were interviewed at length for the film but appeared only in the background. (The source wasn't sure whether a third longtime friend of Obamas, Eric Whitaker, was interviewed.)

Both were present for critical moments like the Reverend Wright episode and are, of course, extremely close to Obama. But in the film, they came across as extras.

The source said that the filmmakers shot much more tape than they could possibly use and that lots of important people and scenes were left on the cutting-room floor, but the omission distorts history.

"For them to exclude her [Valerie] is a false reflection of reality," said the source, a close friend of both Jarrett and the Obamas. "Some of us were almost physically sick watching it." (from newsweek.com)

Related video: By the People

Alma mater welcomes disgraced Wade Rathke

Radical leftwing activists are always in fashion on campus
Another activist, meanwhile, did speak on campus this week, but did so without drawing much attention.

The Tuesday appearance of Wade Rathke, founder of the scandal-prone Associations of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN), also was sponsored by the social thought department. Rathke sparked one of the largest public disturbances in Springfield’s history.

In 1969, as a 20-year-old Williams College student, he organized a sit-in at the public welfare office on State Street. The demonstrators were ordered to leave the office, but stayed, triggering a rock-and-bottle throwing riot. Later, 50 were arrested. Rathke also spoke Monday at Springfield College. (from masslive.com)
Related video: Beck takes on Wade Rathke

ACORN: The Fix is In

Power brokers circle the wagons around union-backed fraud group
On October 15th, local ACORN spokesman David Lagstein was the special guest of the East County Democrat Club in El Cajon, CA. Lagstein is ACORN’s chief organizer in the San Diego area. The meeting was held at Coco’s Restaurant, a very public venue. Because of ACORN’s close ties to the Democrat party, Mr. Lagstein clearly felt he was among friends. These two clips suggest the investigation of ACORN announced by California Attorney General Jerry Brown already has a pre-determined outcome.

Lagstein notes that the Attorney General is a “political animal.” He states that he has been in communication with Brown’s office and assures the crowd that “the fault WILL be found with the people that did the video — not ACORN.”

If that’s true, then the fix is in and Brown’s investigation is just a scam on the public. But, targeting the filmmakers will also put Brown’s office in an especially difficult position. Just today, we learn that one of Jerry Brown’s chief aides secretly recorded phone conversations with at least 5 reporters. We’ll see if Brown believes the law applies to his staff as well as the young filmmakers. (from biggovernment.com)

U.S. lousy with ACORN

Union-backed fraud group has many tentacles
Even if Congress moves to permanently cut-off ACORN this public funding only accounts for a small percentage of its financial base, research shows.

The lead ACORN organization registered in Arkansas and New Orleans has received $3 million from the Marguerite Casey Foundation, $821,000 from the Robin Hood Foundation, $595,000 from the Edna McConnell Clark Foundation and $65,000 from the Annie E. Casey Foundation, according to Capital Research Center (CRC).

Other foundations have contributed to ACORN’s affiliates. Project Vote has received $4,047,500 from the Rockefeller Family Fund and $1,460,801 from the Tides Foundation, financial records show. ACORN’s American Institute for Social Justice (AISJ) has received almost $30 million in foundation grants, since 2000, according to the CRC.

AISJ has received $5,125,000 from the Marguerite Casey Foundation, $4,130,000 from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Trust and $265,000 from the Needmor Fund.

The Woods Fund of Chicago, where President Barack Obama and former Weather Underground leader William Ayers sat as board members, has donated about $190,000 to the ACORN network, according to CRC. Obama and Ayers served on the Woods Fund board from 1999 to 2001, when two of the ACORN grants were made.

George Soros’s Open Society donated $25,000 to ACORN, while his Democracy Alliance steered a grant of “unknown size” to the community group back in 2006, CRC records show.

The rebuke from The Commerce Department and other setbacks on Capitol Hill belie these alternative funding sources. Even without taxpayer dollars, Matthew Vadum, a senior editor and analyst with CRC, expects ACORN to remain flush with cash thanks to left-leaning foundations and individual donors.

Organized labor also figures prominently into this equation.

Financial disclosure forms show that unions have contributed almost $10 million to ACORN, since 2005. The Service Employees International Union (SEIU) has been the single largest benefactor here contributing $7 million. SEIU is also responsible for at least partially funding ACORN’s corporate shakedown efforts and for directing partisan activities, former and current ACORN insiders have said. (from biggovernment.com)

We don't need no stinkin' union thugs

Popular union-political kickback scheme draws scrutiny
Rep. John Bear has introduced legislation that would prohibit project labor agreements -- PLAs -- on public construction in Pennsylvania. Rep. Bear says government-mandated PLAs punish taxpayers by inflating public construction costs, discourage competition from local businesses with high-skilled employees and rig the procurement process in the unions’ favor when competing for state and local construction contracts.

While we do not have anything against unions, we think it is unfair to eliminate the vast majority of Pennsylvania construction companies from bidding on state funded projects because they are not unionized ... and we think it unfair to Pennsylvania tax payers for the state to have to pay union scale if the work can be done less expensively without compromising quality. (editorial excerpted from wgal.com)
Related video: The Facts on Union-Only PLAs

I Am Kenneth Gladney

Meet a victim of violent, racist SEIU political thugs
I am a man with no chips on his shoulders and no axes to grind. I just want to be an accepted member of society. I want to make my own way in the world. A free man in a free country.

On August 6, 2009 my manhood and my civil rights were reversed back to the 1960’s. I was working as a vendor at a townhall event on Aging, hosted by Rep. Russ Carnahan, in St. Louis. I was selling my buttons and flags.

A group of people with purple t-shirts were leaving the rally. As the group walked past me, I offered one of the gentlemen a Gadsen flag and a button. The man turned and looked at my board and said, “who in the fuck is selling this shit?”

I replied “I am Sir, would you like a flag or a button?

He shouted at me, “What kind of nigger are you?!” Then, he grabbed my board, so I quickly grabbed it back, then the man punched me in the face and charged at me . I put my hands up to block the second blow from the large man, when two other people from that group grabbed me and threw me to the ground and started punching and kicking me. I was kicked in the head and in the back, legs and buttocks. Then a white woman ran up to me while I was on the ground and began kicking me in my head as well. A few people came to my rescue for which I am forever grateful. (from biggovernment.com)

Related video: Kenneth Gladney Attacked, Called Racial Slur at St. Louis Health Care Town Hall

Orwellian SEIU exposed!

Union operatives' secret newspeak memo leaked

Oppressive union bigs will do or say anything to strip workers' right to secret-ballot unionization elections. Click image to enlarge.

HT: nrtwc.org

Jon Voight takes on ObamaCare

Not all celebrities are socialists
You might not have known it from the lack of coverage on Thursday, but Tea Partiers rallying at Capitol Hill were joined by at least one celebrity ObamaCare critic, actor Jon Voight, who denounced the requirement forcing Americans to buy health insurance under penalty of law as unconstitutional. (from newsbusters.orgx)

Dems declare Civil War over ObamaCare

Leftwing moveon.org expels party moderates

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