Communism for Conservatives

Monday, September 6, 2010

Three of the ten planks of the Communist Manifesto (1848) are still universally accepted.

2. A heavy progressive or graduated income tax. 5. Centralization of credit in the hands of the state, by means of a national bank with state capital and an exclusive monopoly.
10. Free education for all children in public schools. Abolition of children's factory labor in its present form. Combination of education with industrial production, etc.
The ten planks were supposed to be the means of ushering in the classless society of Communism. The next sentence after plank #10 revealed the utopianism of Marxism.
When, in the course of development, class distinctions have disappeared, and all production has been concentrated in the hands of a vast association of the whole nation, the public power will lose its political character.
Classes did not go away in the Communist paradises. There were the haves and the have-nots. The basis of access into the minority class of the haves was through membership in the Communist Party.
The state never went away. It got stronger and more demanding. It became more pervasive.
Today, the Communist paradises are gone, except for Cuba and North Korea. They have all officially abandoned Communism as an ideology. Yet they all maintain their commitment to the three planks. Why? Because these three planks constitute the Promised Land of the entire world. There is no nation in which these three planks are not operative, at least on paper.
There is no nation that funds itself exclusively by some version of a flat tax: the same tax rate for all taxpayers. Every nation has a graduated income tax. Some are more graduated ("progressive") than others. The Scandinavian nations are at the high end. The United States is at the low end. But the top rates are all at least 40%. This, by the way, is twice the rate of the 20% flat tax that the Pharaoh imposed on Egypt (Genesis 47:24). Egypt, let us not forget, was the archetype of tyranny for the Israelites. God told them that 10% is tyrannical (I Sam. 8:14, 17). To get back to Israel's tyranny, tax rates would have to be cut by at least 75%. But Americans think of themselves as living in the land of the free.
Central banks are all officially state banks. There may be some degree of private ownership, but officially the final jurisdiction is in the hands of the national governments. This may be a contrived illusion for the sake of the voters, but these institutions do derive their power from special legislation from the national governments, or, in the case of the European Central Bank, the European Union. No central bank can survive apart from a grant of monopoly privilege by the supreme civil government.
Tax-funded educational systems are universal. The vast majority of all students are taught in these schools. In most European nations, attendance is compulsory. Only in the last 25 years have home schooling families in the United States gained a semblance of liberty from the local school boards. Some states remain tyrannical. The Home School Legal Defense Association still has lots of families to defend.

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