Wednesday, June 15, 2016

A Thought About Communism for my Sister

I know that you don't care much for socialist ideas that Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels brought about.  I don't even agree with it all myself, but we need to recognize the ideas that have seeped into our own society that actually do work.  The Japanese would say "mottainai" if we completely ignored the ideas they came up with.  

Despite the historical figures like Mao Zedong and Joseph Stalin using their "communism" to make themselves head of fascist states, Marx and Engels talked mostly about making the working class strong and not whole dependent on the the rich class that they refer to as the bourgeois.  Some ideas we haven’t adopted like the “Abolition of property in land and application of all rents of land to public purposes.” and the “Abolition of all rights of inheritance.” as the stated in their manifesto.  We generally think of this redistribution of land when we think of communism.  However, a few ideas our country and many others have adopted readily.  

Ideas we had that we didn’t realize are communist:

First, a “A heavy progressive or graduated income tax” has been readily adopted in our country for the sole purpose of making the working class a strong middle class that lives well.  Hasn’t that happened.  For that and other reasons which I will mentioned our father was able to come from a family that didn’t have much and create a home where we didn’t have to worry about if there would be enough food, clothes or other necessities.  

Remember how our mother and father taught us appreciate the great education system our nation has and runs.  The communist manifesto moves to grant  “Free education for all children in public schools. Abolition of children’s factory labour in its present form.”  There is no arguing with that and to think that only those with parents rich enough to pay for schooling could get educated like in ages past, it is foreign to us.  

Lastly, remember traveling to our grandmother’s house 600 miles away?  It was sometimes difficult to cope with as children.  Thankfully our government has a national highway system that is in complete accordance with Marx’s and Engels’ point that countries need “Centralization of the means of communication and transport in the hands of the State.”  Just think a car ride to grandmother’s that is going from private backroad to private backroad.  I think you would have gotten even more car sick for a much longer time.

So now you know why I get uncomfortable when you generalize communism as bad.  Some ideas are too radical for sure, but we need to be identify the good in all things.  Being adaptable is key as Darwin stated (a whole other conversation) and adopt what is good from whatever source.

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