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Letter: Communist policies?

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  • No One Of Consequence West Jordan, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 12:22 a.m.

    Thank you William for your example of sophistry, which is defined in the World English Dictionary as "a method of argument that is seemingly plausible though actually invalid and misleading".

    We can split hairs about how the proponents of Communism, Socialism, Marxism, Leninism, Stalinism, Maoism, Facism and Obamaism have defined the terms for their own convenience or we can consider the commonality between them all: The common man/woman is incapable of running their own lives and so must be controlled, supported, directed, sanctioned and managed by those who are "wiser" and "more suited" to rule.

    Because, after all, freedom is far too precious a commodity to allow just anyone to have it.

  • Roland Kayser Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 2:47 a.m.

    When Obama was inaugurated, the economy was in free-fall. In fact it was declining faster than it did at any point during the great depression. There were voices who were calling on the president to nationalize both the banking industry and the auto industry. Had he actually been a communist that is precisely what he would have done. Instead he gave them both loans and let them pay them back, which they have done for the most part, leaving them under totally private ownership today.

    No communist worth his salt would have allowed such a golden opportunity to slip through his fingers. No, the president is fairly ordinary Democratic politician, his policies no more communist than Harry Truman or JFK.

  • Thid Barker Victor, ID
    Jan. 30, 2014 7:01 a.m.

    Stalin, Pol Pot, Mao ste Tung, Castro among others were all Marxists (From each according to their ability and to each according to their needs) but as history has shown us, millions of innocent people were murdered by Marxists dictators enforcing Marxism's collectivism or communism. Because free people will not be forced to work for that which they will not receive so other may receive what they did not work for. That's called slavery! I may choose to give to someone according to their needs but being forced to do so is evil.

  • Furry1993 Ogden, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 7:09 a.m.

    to William Gronberg -- well said. You are very right in your comment.

  • micawber Centerville, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 7:26 a.m.

    @No One of Consequence:
    I feel just as free now as a did a decade or three decades ago. I continue to work, spend time with my family, and worship as I always have. I read widely and without censorship. I can (and sometimes do) disagree with the President without fear of repercussion.

    Words like "Communist" or "socialist" do not illuminate public discourse, especially when they are misused. You obviously don't like President Obama, but he is no Communist.

  • one vote Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 7:51 a.m.

    Bitter labelers unite. As to freedom, the de-criminalization of marijuana shows there is more freedom from arbitrary government control than ever.

  • Thid Barker Victor, ID
    Jan. 30, 2014 8:11 a.m.

    one vote. Being addicted to marijuana is not freedom. Its the worst kind of slavery there is. Go visit an addiction recovery center for more information.

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    Jan. 30, 2014 8:21 a.m.

    If we compare Obama's vision of America with the vision of the Founding Fathers, we can clearly see that Obama's vision is very similar to King George's vision. King George saw the colonies as profit centers for England. He saw the people as his subjects. He saw an opportunity to exploit the colonies, just as England had exploit "colonies" all over the world.

    Obama has no respect for the Constitution. He ignores it completely. In his State of the Union message, he "dared" Congress to stop him from using executive orders to do what ever he thought was proper and necessary. He does not believe that he is prohibited from legislating. That's what an executive order is; it is legislation.

    Instead of quibbling about the word, "Communism", why not focus on the words, "Freedom", "Liberty", "Constitutional"?

    Can anyone tell us that Obama, the Constitutional Scholar, limits his actions to those duties authorized in Article II?

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 8:34 a.m.

    I don't think we really want to go back to the days of McCarthyism and Red Baiting. Even hinting at our leaders, or those with contrary views, as being Marxists and Communists is wrong, extreme, and contrary to our American values going back to the Founding Fathers. Yesterday, on the pages of this website, I was called a communist by a far right wing commenter because I expressed my view that government had a constructive role in our lives. The far right loves attacking with extreme labels, which is wrong and toxic to public discourse. Tone down the rhetoric. Talk issues, not generalities and labels in order to suppress dialogue. Folks can disagree, but there is no need to overreact.

  • spring street SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 8:36 a.m.

    @no on of and thid

    Like it or not the letter writer s correct Karl Marx did indeed coin the term communism and the definition iis exsactly as he states. The sopistiry comes from people like Mao and Stalin that attempted to justify their fascist activities by claiming they were communist and only trying to gain power for the people. Claiming any of those people are communist is like Russia claiming they are now a free capitalist society.

  • Happy Valley Heretic Orem, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 8:38 a.m.

    Agreed one vote, and mica.
    I too, do not feel the weight of oppression from an over reaching government.

    Attaching the sometimes conflicting labels to Obama has been a cornerstone of the conservative posters, which shows they have no idea what the definition of these differing "isms" are but they know they are bad, so we'll associate them with Obama.

    Simply repeating falsehoods won't make them so.

    Speaking of falsehoods, marijuana is not and never has been "addicting" anymore than chocolate or ice cream.
    (But the truth and facts have never gotten in the way of conservative thinking.)
    It's called freedom because you choose for yourself.
    I don't understand the rights obsession with controlling peoples personal lives while crying for less regulation on businesses.

  • Badgerbadger Murray, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 8:53 a.m.

    "I don't think we really want to go back to the days of McCarthyism and Red Baiting."

    Instead we are in the days of IRSism (targeting conservatives), and race baiting.

    It is no better. You only think it is better because you are on the perpetrator side instead of the target side.

  • Thid Barker Victor, ID
    Jan. 30, 2014 8:55 a.m.

    @ Happy Valley. Marijuana not addictive? Go talk to any drug addiction counselor about what got addicts addicted. Educate yourself! They are not called "potheads" for nothing.

  • joe5 South Jordan, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 8:57 a.m.

    micawber and HVH: You must have a much different concept of freedom than I do. If it comes down to reading the books you want to, you can go on in your small sense of well-being. However I have seen and felt the oppressive hand of government in several instances. I'll give you just one.

    My sister, a San Diego resident, volunteered to work in Colorado on the Mitt Romney campaign. She and a busload of like-minded people made the long journey and spent about a week in Colorado. Last year, her tax return was withheld pending an audit and with no explanation at all. Having an idea why she might have been singled out, she began to poll those who had been on the bus to/from Colorado and learned that over 70% of them had the exact same thing happening to them. By the way, those audits are still pending and those tax returns are still outstanding. For all I know, nobody at IRS is even looking at those files and it may be years, if ever, that it gets resolved.

    Just because you haven't experienced it doesn't mean it isn't happening.

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    Jan. 30, 2014 9:00 a.m.

    " The common man/woman is incapable of running their own lives and so must be controlled, supported, directed, sanctioned and managed by those who are "wiser" and "more suited" to rule."

    This is a joke... right? The common man is capable of securing this country against terrorist? The common man can provide emergency services for himself... right? The common man should be expected to be able to regulate his own neighborhood, ensure safe industry is co-located within. The common man is reasonably expected to educate his own enough to compete on a global employment stage. The common man should be able to ensure fair trade practices occur between counties for his or her services or product. The common man should be able to negotiate with food suppliers that the supply chain for food is safe.

    We could go on for ever. If the author of that quote really believes they are capable of managing all those aspects of their lives on their own behalf, congratulations. Every aspect of our lives is interconnected to a thousand other points of influence. Communications, trade, financial services.... you think that system could operate without regulation or governmental controls....? Wow!

  • lost in DC West Jordan, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 9:41 a.m.

    William,
    you'd rather we said BO and his Stalinist policies? OK. BO and his Stalinist policies.

    Roland,
    those "loans" you say revived the economy? those were approved during the bush administration. thanks for recognizing what bush and paulson did to stabilize the economy. Too bad BO's Stalinist policies slowed the recovery.

    micawber,
    glad you can still worship as you wish - too bad small business owners who oppose gay marriage and employers who have religious prohibitions to abortion and birth control can no longer follow their faiths without BO and courts penalizing them.

    Esquire,
    why are your calls for constructive dialogue only directed at the right? do you not see what the left spews? When huffingtonpost commenters were calling for the death of bush advisors? when BO himself uses every speach he gives to excoriate his political opponents? When one vote calls those with whom he disagrees "bitter labelers"?

    HVH
    Simply repeating falsehoods won't make them so.
    What you said is correct, but BO's constant repeat of falsehoods sure has a lot of people fooled.

    CDC says marijuana is 3 X as carcinogenic as tobacco. Of course, truth has never gotten in the way of liberal thinking

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 9:46 a.m.

    William is right. It's more "Socialism" than "Communism". And it's not even real "Socialism".

    But still... is the drift this direction the drift we WANT to take?

    ===

    I like to help my neighbors just like everybody else, but I don't like the Government doing it for me, or forcing me to do it.

    I also don't like the ever increasing regulation we are getting from our government (which originally was founded on the principle that the PEOPLE should have as much liberty as possible, and that America's representative democracy, that "government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth."

    We kill that when well meaning people in the government turn on the people and start regulating them to the nth degree.

    We need to start a drift back towards the kind of government described in the Gettysburg Address, the Constitution, the Declaration of IN-dependence, and the Bill of Rights.

    Just my opinion though...

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 10:00 a.m.

    RE: "Bitter labelers unite" (one vote).

    Would that be like labeling me "racist" (IF I disagree with Obama)? Or an "AM radio listener"? Or a "Right-wing nut"? Hmmm?

    Would it be like Esquire calling it "McCarthyism" and "Red Baiting"?

    "Communism" is NOT a dirty word. Neither is "Socialism". We can say them without getting scolded. And we can face them for what they are in our discussions. And we can want to avoid them IF we want.

    ===

    Happy Valley Heretic,
    If marijuana is no more additive than chocolate ice cream... why do so many marijuana users go on to try harder drugs (and get addicted)... and not many ice cream users go on to try hard drugs?

    Studies show that a HUGE percentage of marijuana users eventually try harder drugs. I don't think that relationship exists with ice cream. Obesity... maybe. But still, it's apples-to-oranges.

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 10:17 a.m.

    Re: No One of Consequence "...Communism, Socialism, Marxism, Leninism, Stalinism, Maoism, Facism and Obamaism have defined the terms for their own convenience or we can consider the commonality between them all: The common man/woman is incapable of running their own lives and so must be controlled, supported, directed, sanctioned and managed by those who are "wiser" and "more suited" to rule."

    That was not Marx's point at all. Marx sought to "lay bare" the process of capital accumulation in capitalism and labor's role in that accumulation. He did not deride labor or accuse them of being "incapable of running their own lives." But he did document quite well how the system, in this case capitalism, is all powerful, that it dictates behavior, that the process of buying and selling people (wage labor) drives out all other forms of human interaction. Marx appreciated the accomplishments of capitalism including its innovation. But in his view capitalism though a natural stage in human development would die. Is that not what we are seeing? The distributions of wealth and income are becoming fantastically top heavy - this is late stage capitalism. Get to know Marx.

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 10:48 a.m.

    RE: "But in his view capitalism though a natural stage in human development would die"... (marxist)...

    And yet... Carl Marx died, and every Marxist experiment has died a miserable failure, and Capitalism lives on, and on, and on... How long has Capitalism been around (not just in the United States but everywhere)???

    And it's not dead yet.

    Many Marxists HOPPED it would be dead after the 2009 stock market correction, but alas, it didn't. And it's healthy and doing fine again (much to the dismay of Marxists and the occupy wallstreet people).

    ====

    If Marx was right, and capitalism was a temporary natural stage in human development that would die... when is it going to die? He's been dead for a long time, and yet it's pretty strong.

    Capitalism needs corrections from time to time, but that doesn't mean it dies.

    Marxism has died EVERY time, and in not much time, and in VERY ugly and often bloody failure. What did Carl Marx have to say about that?

  • Kent C. DeForrest Provo, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 11:09 a.m.

    My friends in socialist Germany would laugh at the labels conservatives in America use to brand their enemies. They know something about Communism, having opposed it for over four decades. Frankly, they think their brand of socialism gives them a lot more freedom than we Americans have. And their economy is the envy of most countries. They are keeping the EU afloat pretty much by themselves. They have their problems, but they'd never trade straight across for ours.

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 11:10 a.m.

    Re: 2 bits "How long has Capitalism been around (not just in the United States but everywhere)???

    200 - 300 years, before that mercantilism, before that feudalism, before that various traditional forms.

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 11:15 a.m.

    And BTW, socialism has been around a long, long time:

    Acts 4:34-35
    New American Standard Bible (NASB)
    34 For there was not a needy person among them, for all who were owners of land or houses would sell them and bring the [a]proceeds of the sales 35 and lay them at the apostles’ feet, and they would be distributed to each as any had need.

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 11:20 a.m.

    Amazing how folks get upset when they are asked to be civil. Rationalizing, twisting like a pretzel to point out some on the other side as justification to refuse to be rational, logical, pragmatic, and civil.

    Folks, Obama is not a commie, a socialist, a dictator, etc. Please, get a grip.

  • red state pride Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 11:30 a.m.

    I think Orwell's definition of Communism in Animal Farm applies fairly well to the current Administration in Washington : " All animals are equal but some animals are more equal than others"

  • Happy Valley Heretic Orem, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 11:33 a.m.

    Thid Barker said:
    Go talk to any drug addiction counselor about what got addicts addicted.
    I said Marijuana wasn't addicting, you want to argue gateway which is nonsense.

    and I repeat...
    I don't understand the rights obsession with controlling peoples personal lives while crying for less regulation on businesses.

  • William Gronberg Payson, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 11:48 a.m.

    @ No One Of Consequence

    “...Communism, Socialism, Marxism, Leninism, Stalinism, Maoism, Facism and Obamaism.”

    Definitely no sophistry in the above. There is one “orange” mixed in with primarily “apples”.

    @ Thid Barker

    'Stalin, Pol Pot, Mao ste Tung, Castro among others were all Marxists...”

    The above scoundrels were Marxists of the Leninist variety. There are numerous varieties of Marxists. There are even anti-Leninist Marxists.

    “(From each according to their ability and to each according to their needs)”

    This is the slogan of Marx's mirage stage of human development that he called “communism”. Marx's “communism” has NEVER existed on the planet earth. It allegedly will evolve sometime after all the world has been purified by the delusional Marxist-Leninists (communists) and their dictatorships.

    The slogan that applies correctly to Stalin and friends is thus:

    “From each according to their ability and to each according to their WORK”.

    You work in the Gulag or you die. The “needs” stuff is a part of the mirage communism future. You work in North Korea or you die. You may die anyway of overwork.

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 12:26 p.m.

    To "Roland Kayser" and what did Obama do to change things? Obama and his policies have been like FDR's policies. They have kept us in a state of misery and have prevented the recovery from being able to take effect.

    To "marxist" that isn't socialism, that is charity. Socialism is the government telling you that you have too much, and that they are going to redistribute the fruits of your labor to others. Charity is giving what you can to benefit others. I choose charity over socialism.

  • Badgerbadger Murray, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 1:29 p.m.

    Amazing how folks get upset when they are asked to be civil by quit calling anyone who disagrees with Obama's policies a racist.

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    Jan. 30, 2014 1:38 p.m.

    "Socialism is the government telling you that you have too much, and that they are going to redistribute the fruits of your labor to others"

    No... not at all. Socialism is a way of thinking where all people in society are interconnected, and that society as a whole decides what issues they will deal with as a group. If relies on a freely elected government where the members of society themselves decide what these imperatives are, and that all are expected to help according to their means. Socialism has absolutely nothing to do with wealth redistribution. Unfortunately socialism also relies an some rather idealistic thinking in that all members will behave.

    Some of the most socialistic countries also have the least repressive governments. Some don't even have viable militaries...... they do not rely on coercion because the nations decisions are voted upon. Unfortunately it does not seem the model scales very large. It requires direct participation by all.

    The real world is a blend of capitalism, socialism, democracy, and republicanism. None of them exist in their pure form or ever should.

  • William Gronberg Payson, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 1:39 p.m.

    @ lost in DC

    “OK. BO and his Stalinist policies.”

    The “BO” stuff is on the level of the grammar school playground.

    President Obama's “Stalinist policies” are a delusion and a mirage. Stalinist policies included the man made famine in the 1930s Ukraine that killed millions. The collectivization of agriculture and the liquidation of the Kulaks was a major Stalinist policy. Being an ally of Nazi Germany was a policy of Stalin. There are abuses of power and the politically motivated IRS auditing would be an abuse of power. Bad, but not a Stalinist policy.

    @ 2 bits

    When you use “Carl”, are you trying to be facetious (humorous, witty or marked by levity)? It is Karl.

    “Carl Marx died, and every Marxist experiment has died a miserable failure...”. The marxist-leninist experiment in North Korea lives on and the dictatorship there is NOT a failure at exercising monopoly power over the people in 2014. When it does fail, it will be much uglier than when East Germany failed.

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 2:05 p.m.

    To "UtahBlueDevil" so tell us, where does socialism work? Every nation that has tried it has severe problems economically.

    Name the nation that has claimed to be socialist and has been able to match the US in terms of creativity, prosperity, or standards of living.

  • lost in DC West Jordan, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 3:42 p.m.

    William,
    The Marxist-Lenninist experiment in North Korea lives on... N.Korea a success? by what objective measure?

    perhaps for the dictator - who can have his own uncle executed. And of course, it does WONDERS for the people of North Korea. According to ANY reasonable method by which a government should be measured, especially in North Korea, it is a miserable failure.

    But let's revisit how BO's policies so mirror those of Stalin/Lennin -

    silence of all political opposition, certainly one of BO's goal's and his lap-dog media is complicit.

    Supremecy of the state over individual religious beliefs - BO is second to no one on that, ie Obamacare.

    wresting control away from the individual and entrenching it in the state - BO rules by dictate and bypasses the people's representatives in the house any time he cannot get them to go along with him.

    Then there are the out and out lies BO tells. plenty of similarities between BO and Uncle Joe.

    as far as calling him BO is concerned, I'm not the one who gave him those initials. Are you complaining about the movie studio that made the movie about bush entitled "GW"?

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 3:46 p.m.

    William Gronberg,
    If you call having no economy, your people constantly on the verge of freezing and starvation, and even the middle-class living in poverty, and having to threaten the Capitalist American's every winter so they will send you oil to heat your homes to prevent mass deaths... "Success"... then I guess they are succeeding in North Korea.

    How many times have we sent NKorea food shipments (to get them to end their Nuclear Weapons program). How many times have we sent them heating oil shipments (to get them to end their Nuclear Weapons program). Many times during the Bush years I know. And many times before that. I don't know why they haven't been bugging Obama and threatening him too... I guess maybe they have a better working relationship with this administration.

    If capitalist nations weren't such humanitarians... North Korea's people would starve.

    Glad I was able to bring some levity to this otherwise grim discussion. You may want to grammar-check my comment too.

  • wrz Phoenix, AZ
    Jan. 30, 2014 5:16 p.m.

    @one vote:
    "As to freedom, the de-criminalization of marijuana shows there is more freedom from arbitrary government control than ever."

    Do you feel the same way about decriminalization of cocaine?

    @Mike Richards:
    "Obama has no respect for the Constitution."

    He has little respect for the laws passed by Congress... Such as the federal immigration laws, and laws against possession and use of marijuana. That's right... there is a federal law against possession and use of marijuana. Where is Obama's AG when you need him? Hiding under his desk, probably.

    "He ignores it completely. In his State of the Union message, he 'dared' Congress to stop him from using executive orders to do what ever he thought was proper and necessary."

    He's relying on 'penumbras and emanations.'

    @Happy Valley Heretic: "Speaking of falsehoods, marijuana is not and never has been "addicting" anymore than chocolate or ice cream."

    Yeah, but chocolate and ice cream doesn't make you confused and bewildered.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 5:22 p.m.

    Nothing seems immune to hyperbole these days; everyone is a hater, socialist, marxist, communist and of course nazi. Not a lot of discussion can come of it.

  • William Gronberg Payson, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 5:57 p.m.

    @ lost in DC

    Here is what I wrote:

    “The marxist-leninist experiment in North Korea lives on and the dictatorship there is NOT a failure at exercising monopoly power over the people in 2014. When it does fail, it will be much uglier than when East Germany failed.”

    Here is how you represent what I wrote:

    The Marxist-Lenninist experiment in North Korea lives on... N.Korea a success? by what objective measure?

    I also wrote the following in an earlier post today:

    “You work in the Gulag or you die. The “needs” stuff is a part of the mirage communism future. You work in North Korea or you die. You may die anyway of overwork.”

    @ 2 bits

    Read the above. North Korea's “Success” again refers to Kim's ability to monopolize power and to use it very effectively to maintain his criminal position of power.

    Back to lost in DC

    “as far as calling him BO is concerned, I'm not the one who gave him those initials. Are you complaining about the movie studio that made the movie about bush entitled "GW"?

    Perhaps I should complain?? I have absolutely no knowledge about the movie “GW”.

  • BeagleDancer Duchesne, UT
    Jan. 30, 2014 9:17 p.m.

    Karl Marx and Ayn Rand had much in common. They both hoped for a world where government would wither away and neither believed superstition or religion would have anything to do with it. Marx was long gone before any of the aberrations carried out using his name took place. And he definitely was right about religion being the opiate of the people.

  • lost in DC West Jordan, UT
    Jan. 31, 2014 8:01 a.m.

    Marxist,
    Carefully read the biblical scripture you quote, you will see that the wealthy FREELY and of THEIR own choice helped the poor. Their wealth was not forcibly removed from them by the apostles for redistribution. your comparison of the feds to the ancient apostles is offensive and misguided.

    William,
    you cannot have it both ways, you say the current version of communism in NK is a success, the dictatorship is not a failure, then you say it will fail miserably. Which is it, a success or a failure? I asked for an objective measure; one man's ability to maintain a stranglehold on power is not an objective measure. I'm sure BO is envious of the NK dictator's absolute power. He's said almost as much since he plans to bypass congress, and he ignores his own signature laws when he learns they are irreparably flawed.

    you are correct, the movie was "W", not GW. But pols have always been known by their initials, FDR, JFK, LBJ, HHH. usually by all 3. Hollywood's leftist elites shortened bush's to 1 initial, I give BO more respect than hollywood gave bush because I extend his back out to 2.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    Feb. 3, 2014 3:23 p.m.

    RedShirt
    USS Enterprise, UT
    To "UtahBlueDevil" so tell us, where does socialism work? Every nation that has tried it has severe problems economically.

    Name the nation that has claimed to be socialist and has been able to match the US in terms of creativity, prosperity, or standards of living.

    2:05 p.m. Jan. 30, 2014

    ==========

    Germany, Japan, UK, Sweden, Norway, Netherlands, Israel, Korea, Canada, ...shall I continue?