Before anyone throws Cuba, China, North Korea, Vietnam and all the former so-called Communist Republics at me, forget about all of those countries. The actual definition of communism and Communists are people who are anti-private property. They want most if not all private property replaced short of people’s homes and personal property. They want control of the economy to be in the hands of the central state. They are even to the left of the Social Democrat, or Democratic Socialist when it comes to economic policy. Because Democratic Socialists believe in property rights and private enterprise, to go along with a superstate to meet the basic needs of the people.
You could be a Communist and believe in democratic multi-party elections. And perhaps even individual rights, short of people acting against the state and threatening the stability of the Communist State. You could be a Communist and even believe in private small business’s short of big business’s. With the state being in control of the big business’s to be used for all the people. Communism is a statist authoritarian ideology, because of the nature of the size of the state in a true communist society. But it’s not necessarily anti-democratic or anti-free. There could be freedom in a true communist society. I doubt we’ll ever see that, especially with both Cuba and China moving to private enterprise economies.
But it’s not so much communism that is the real threat to freedom and individualism and the major competitor and arch-rival of liberalism. Liberalism, liberal democracy, being true philosophies that are truly about freedom, individualism and individual rights. But statism, whether it comes from the Far-Left, or the Far-Right, that are the arch-rivals of liberalism, as well as conservative libertarianism. Statism, being all about the state and that the state is superior. And that freedom can’t be trusted and is too risky. Because a Statist believes that freedom gives people the right to make mistakes that the state has to pay for. But if the state is completely in charge and people aren’t free to go out on their own, the state will be able to protect them and take care of them. And no one will have too much, or too little and immorality won’t become a problem.
There are Statists right and left in democratic societies and even in a liberal democratic society like America. (There’s that word liberal again) Statists on the Far-Left, who not only believe that people can’t be trusted with their money, because they’ll make bad decisions with it. Or will end up being really successful and productive and make a lot more money than most people. So you need taxes and regulations high enough to make sure that government controls most of those resources to see that everyone is taken care. And not free to make mistakes with their own money, or make a lot of money.
But on the social side, you have leftist Statists who believe people can’t be trusted as far as how they talk to each other. That hate speech shouldn’t be free and that their form of political correctness should be the law of the land. That minority groups should get special protection from government. That women should be treated superior to men. That people can’t be trusted to even get their own news and that right-wing media shouldn’t be allowed to exist. And that people can’t be trusted as far as what they should eat and drink. And that government should decide what people can eat and drink. The ultimate nanny state. A Statist on the Far-Left in America, makes Democratic Socialist U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders look like a Moderate.
And you see Statists on the Far-Right in America, who tend to look at society through their own cultural and religious views. So-called Religious-Conservatives, but Neoconservatives who tend to share the cultural views Religious-Conservatives, but also come from a national morality and security bent as well. That security and morality should always come before liberty. That liberty should only be tolerated when it doesn’t threaten security and when people are acting moral in their view. And that government should enforce the Neoconservative’s view of national morality and security. And the Neo-Right has dominated the Republican Party for what twenty-five years now. With the GOP only moving back to their conservative-libertarian roots since some guy named Barack Obama became President of the United States. And they decided that they no longer debt and deficits and the Patriot Act and host of other policies started by the Bush Administration.
So look, I’m not a Communist, or any other type of Socialist. Which shouldn’t be a newsflash to anyone familiar with this blog, or my blogging. But I don’t see socialism, or even communism as the main threat to liberty. And I don’t even see it as a real threat or competitor to liberalism. Because the Liberal, will always have better views and arguments than a Communist and even Socialist. Because the Liberals will explain what people can do for themselves if they just have the tools. While the Socialist, or Communist will always try to tell the audience what government can do for the people so they don’t have to act on their own. Which doesn’t tend to fly in America. But the real threat to freedom in America and in general, is statism. Whether it comes from the Far-Left, or Far-Right.