Most people react with vile disdain when they see a Nazi flag, and rightly so. Nazism killed 20 million people, an estimated 6 million Jews, Gypsies, homosexuals, communists, unfit laborers, and physically deformed people intentionally in prison camps. However, how many people share the same disdain for Communism? Even though it has killed almost ten times as many people as Nazism did, it still it is looked on by most people in a favorable, or at least forgiving light. It is taught by history professors with an �unbiased account�, considered �good in theory� (is Nazism �good in theory�?) and as of yet just incorrectly implemented. Communism has killed 170 million people this century, according to Political Scientist, Nobel Peace Prize runner up and author of the most cited historical book, R.J Rummel.
From R.J Rummels site -
For perspective on Mao’s most bloody rule, all wars 1900-1987 cost in combat dead 34,021,000 — including WWI and II, Vietnam, Korea, and the Mexican and Russian Revolutions. Mao alone murdered over twice as many as were killed in combat in all these wars. Think about that. One man. Only one man did that much killing. If anything should cause us to avoid anyone having such power at any cost, here it is.
By 1950 alone that number was in the dozens of millions, many millions in China and may millions in the Soviet Union. Given that by the 50�s communism had all ready killed millions of people, it was right to be very weary of any communist political officer of influence. Rational people in this nation were more than justified in attempting to route out communists from government positions. Usually this defensiveness is derided as �McCarthyism�, while McCarthy�s outstanding attribute was his Anti-communism, the real ill of his ways lied in his attack of private citizens with scare mongering and politicizing rivaled today only by the global warming dystopians. Yet cables and messages released after the fall of the Soviet Union revealed that most of the people McCarthy accused of being communist spies actually were, including Alger Hiss.
Communism is no laughing matter, as it’s death toll attests. In that regard I highly recommend checking out R.J. Rummels site, Power Kills, http://www.hawaii.edu/powerkills/welcome.html which documents murders committed by governments, left and right. Governments have killed more than four times the number of people that have been killed in wars this century, and the overwhelming majority of those murders were committed by communist governments.
20th Century Democide
The typical cultural tendency today regarding communism is to A) completely downplay it’s historical atrocities B) ridicule the concern individuals had with it at the height of the Cold War (i.e. derogatory comments about "The Red Scare" "McCarthyism" and the "Domino Theory" ) C) and laugh at how the Soviet Union fell without a single shot being fired, disregarding the millions of battle dead in China, Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, Korea, South America, etc.
I am a great admirer of the philosopher and novelist Ayn Rand, and when she was asked what her political position was, she stated "Anti-Communist" but then recanted, refusing to define herself with a negative. During the height of the �Red Scare� this brilliant Russian immigrant testified for the House Un-American Activities Committee as a friendly witness.
But I can not re-iterate this part of the story as well as Kelley Ross can, from http://www.friesian.com/rand.htm
"Another of Rand’s sins against the Left and still of current interest was her willingness to testify as a "friendly witness" in the 1947 hearings of the House Committee on Un-American Activities (HUAC) on Communist infiltration of Hollywood. Rand’s only complaint was that they didn’t let her testify enough. She was the only person at the hearings who had actually lived under Communism, indeed been a witness to the entire Russian Revolution and Civil War, and she wanted to explain how anti-capitalist messages were included in many mainstream Hollywood movies. It may not be remembered much now that Rand got her real start in America working in Hollywood, living for many years in the San Fernando Valley. �
While Communism failed and fell in the real world, in the make-believe world of Hollywood Communist propaganda succeeded quite nicely, and many people still believe that the HUAC investigations were "witch hunts" for non-existent enemies or well-meaning idealists. Well meaning idealists there were, but they were not the targets of the Committee. Instead, they became the "useful idiot" liberals, in Lenin’s words, who whitewashed all the real Communists and their activities. The useful idiots are still at it, though since the 60’s many of them, as anti-anti-Communists, have been all but indistinguishable from their Communist friends in Vietnam, Cuba, and Nicaragua. As it turned out, the easiest way to find the Communists in Hollywood was just to subpoena all the suspects. Almost everyone who then refused to testify or took the Fifth Amendment, it happened, actually were Party members (acting on Party orders) or fellow travelers, as we know now from many sources, including the Soviet archives that also reveal the Soviet funding and direction of the Communist Party USA and its activities in Hollywood. These were not idealists but willing agents of tyranny, murder, and crimes against humanity. Rand would have no more patience now with leftists whining about "McCarthyism" than she did in 1947 with the lying and dissimulating agents of the living mass murderer Josef Stalin."
You can read Rand’s HUAC testimony here -
Given the massive amount of murders committed by Communist nations, their typical political tendency to undermine intellectually non-communist nations (the first phase of the typical plan, the last of which being targeted executions of intellectuals in opposition to them) and the fact that most of these people actually were communist spies, it is incredibly disingenuous to deride McCarthy and HUAC in the manner that is so common today.
Perhaps in my assessment of communism is an instance where my thinking is much more black and white than is typically espoused today, with communism viewed with much more forgiveness and diminished moral condemnation. I can certainly understand what might drive individuals to communism, especially in the ratty shit-holes and murderously oppressive right wing nationalist nations that spawned communism in many cases; even if it was with a lot of Soviet help. However in every case those far left governments killed many more then even the worst of the far right governments. While I certainly understand and empathize with the struggles an individual must face in a situation like that, I have absolutely no tolerance for those who simply want to make slaves out of every free man on earth.
In one sad case often cited as part of the �Red Scare� Physicists and head of the Manhattan Project Robert J Oppenheimer was accused of being a communist spy and some former members of his team, such as Edward Teller, testified against him. Oppenheimer was a very sad victim in this and I am a great admirer of him and, in fact, Edward Teller as well. The accusations and subsequent loss of security clearance shocked the scientific community and often made the accusers outcasts. Teller, a Hungarian immigrant of Jewish descent, fled the communist revolutions in Hungary, and consequently developed a deep disdain for communism and fascism. Testifying against Oppenheimer made him an outcast in much of the scientific community but in the light of his history it was more than understandable. And it remains that in all of this there was indeed a spy at the Manhattan Project in the form of Klaus Fuchs, who handed over the plans for an atomic bomb to Henry Gold, who then handed them to the Rosenberg’s. Many people claim that the information provided by Fuchs was vital in the Soviet’s achievement of a nuclear bomb, although some claim it was of little use.
I suspect from discussions of communism I have had that to many people black and what thinking equates with absolutist assessments of things, like my consideration of communism as evil or wrong, while others might search through all of it for some good. But it is fallacious to assert that in all things or people there is some good, because it simultaneously asserts that in all people there must be some bad, and consequently that no matter how hard one tries to be good they could never attain that, and no matter how evil someone or something is, like Stalin, Mao, Hitler, or communism, it has some good in it. I have no doubt that Stalin was probably nice to his dog, and that a few peasants were helped out by communism, but the overwhelming majority of horrific pain and suffering that communism caused could never even remotely be blemished by whatever miniscule good that came from it.
Many people strive to find value in divergent ideas and try to examine them from every possible angle, perspective, and scale, but to any value system based on the life of an individual, communism can have *no value* whatsoever. Communism is the absolute logical extension of anti-life, anti-human, anti-mind, anti-individual, and anti-progress. My love of books would have gotten me immediately purged, hung, smashed, or sent off to a gulag in very nearly every single communist nation. Simply having books *at all* was a death sentence to many people in Cambodia and in China. My love of ideas, and of self expression, would have gotten me, and probably my family, rapidly killed in these countries. If this is not a living objective embodiment, of evil where *thinking* is a crime punishable by death, *then what is?*
[Tan Samay’s] pupils hanged him. A noose was passed around his neck; then the rope was passed over the branch of a tree. Half a dozen children between eight and ten years old held the loose end of the rope, pulling it sharply three or four times, dropping it in between. All the while they were shouting, "Unfit teacher! Unfit teacher!" until Tan Samay was dead. The worst was that the children took obvious pleasure in killing.
—-A Khmer Rouge execution � From R.J. Rummel�s �Power Kills� site
In the case of communism, gray or non-linear thinking seems to be a desire to avoid making moral judgments. When we consider again Nazism, there is no question about it�s moral stature. Can the same people that say they can find some good in communism legitimately say that can find no good in Nazism? Having read a great book on Hitler�s rise to power I can understand how individuals in pre-Nazi Germany could have felt oppressed and overburdened by the allies of WWI, and how these people who just wanted to have a decent life for themselves could end up promulgating on of the most murderous regimes in history. I also understand how with only minor changes our modern professors �non partisan� lectures on the cold war would read just like modern neo-nazi propaganda blaming the push of Germany into war on a hyper vigilant anti-German Europe and the Jews. It�s all context, and from the perspective of the German people leading up to 1935 it was not their fault! But they could not have done that without deliberately avoiding passing moral judgments on their own system, without deliberately dehumanizing their victims or opponents, or avoiding at all possible costs making moral assessments. There is no possible way a German citizen could have honestly morally defended Nazi policies so the only way for this rise to power to occur was to abdicate moral absolutism to vagueness, moral relativism, and evasion. The same is absolutely true of communism, which abdicates life, mind, and self to the collective and the state.
In cases where it is a life and death issue, one *must* pass moral judgment, moral indifference or agnosticism rewards immorality, just as absolute pacifism actually rewards violent and oppressive regimes by easily succumbing to their initiations of force. Pacifism in moral condemnation rewards murderous brutality. It is depraved indifference.
It�s always good to be vigilantly skeptical of any kind of dichotomous us vs. them thinking. The vast majority of it is baseless and arbitrary. But just because right and wrong / good and evil / and us vs. them has been hijacked by every ethnicity, nationality, special interest group, and collectivist ideal, does not mean that the concepts of right and wrong and us vs. them are invalid. There are certain fundamentals of human standards by which every culture and individual action must be judged against, and that is the respect of life and individuality. Non judgment is the height of moral relativism and means anything goes, whether it is simply a disingenuous white lie or an attempted genocide.
Yes, most forms of partisanship are worthless and arbitrary, but that does not mean that holding oneself and others to certain moral ideals and ethical basics is wrong Many African cultures mutilate young women�s genitalia is this right or wrong? Many Islamic cultures stone adulterers to death, is this right or wrong? Many traditionalist Chinese cultures used to bind young women�s feet was this right or wrong? Many western Christian nations still mutilate male genitalia at birth is this right or wrong?
Witness the indifference today to the brutal oppression of Cuba, Vietnam, Laos, and North Korea. Witness the callous disregard for genocides in Cambodia, Rwanda and today in Darfur. Witness the left, our alleged defenders of human rights, and their complete and utter indifference in most cases, or worst, opposition to, the removal of one of the most brutal dictators of our time who slaughtered gay men and women and their families, executed dissidents and their families, and held the world hostage. Witness that same callous disregard for the deaths and flagrant violation of every human right that permeates the dictatorships and theocracies in the Arab sea of tyranny in the middle east, and that same indifference to the tens of millions of deaths from Malaria the modern environmentalism movement has spawned by banning DDT. These are the fruits of moral relativism.
There are only two ways to completely end partisanship; to abolish all ideals, ethics, and moral codes which generate an us for them attitude (the liberal multi-culturalist moral relativist approach) or to abolish one side of the us vs. them conflict. In all these scenarios, the smallest minority are the defenders of the fundamental rights of sentient beings, the advocates of objective reality, those who base ethics on life. To deny any concept of moral foundation is to side indirectly and implicitly with the most brutal and murderous side of the us vs. them conflict. One may ask �when does this partisanship stop, when everyone embraces one ideology?� Yes, it stops when they all embrace fundamental rights, when all the other ideologies stop murdering and enslaving people who disagree with them. When they all accept, as a component and a foundation of their ideology, a respect for individualism, for life, and for freedom. Either that or it stops when every one accepts any murder, oppression, slavery or assault as just someone else�s culture and equally valid. Where do you stand?
I can understand people�s hesitance to make any absolute moral declarations, but just because vile anti-individualist brain washing cults hi jack absolutism morality with their own morally arbitrary pronouncements doesn�t mean that a moral foundation in objective reality, life, and individuality is wrong, or that morally condemning those ideologies opposed to those things is wrong.
We are rarely hesitant in defending our right to self, individuality, and life, but are easily dismissive of everyone else�s to such an extent that we are hesitant to morally condemn the most anti-self, anti-individuality, and anti-life ideology ever existed on this planet. I have no doubt that nearly every single one of those 170 million people loved their lives much as I do mine, and you do yours, where is our compassion for them? Our vigilant defense of our own self and individuality is nothing less than an extremely dogmatic ideological stand, and in this we are the essence of black and white. We must presume axiomatically that everyone deserves that same amount of respect and thus rightly and justly morally condemn those ideologies which murder, enslave, and imprison people for nothing more than living, breathing, and thinking.