Obama's Brand of Marxism

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by Gary North Tea Party Economist

Recently by Gary North: How the Council on Foreign Relations Controls Conservative Republicans

     

“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.” — Sun Tzu, 5th century B.C.

There is an old rule of war, which includes politics. If you misunderstand your opponent’s philosophy of life, you will misunderstand his goals. If you misunderstand his goals, you will misunderstand his strategy. If you misunderstand his strategy, you will misunderstand his tactics. This will place you at a disadvantage.

Intrade, the international betting site, has Obama’s odds of a win at about 58%. It has not been below 50% since November 2011. Intrade is rarely wrong in bets on political outcomes. So, if this really is a crucial election, what is your personal fall-back position if he wins? What is the Republicans’ fall-back position? After all, if the Republican Party gets out the Republican voter base by telling them that this is yet another “election of the century,” and Obama still wins, despite a rotten economy, which should doom his chances, what can they tell the troops? “Oh, well, we won the House of Representatives. We can block every bad law he proposes.” That will be the truth. Intrade bets are 90% that Republicans will win the House. If they win the Senate, too — now about 50-50 — they can even block his Supreme Court appointments.

So, that would mean that this isn’t the election of the century.

Conservatives need a philosophy, goal, strategy, and tactical plan to deal with an Obama victory in November. Anything which in any way raises non-issues in dealing with Obama is a smoke screen.

I am now going to blow away some smoke.

WHAT MAKES BARACK/BARRY RUN?

I contend that Obama’s Right-wing opponents have generally misunderstood his philosophy, his goals, his strategy, and his tactics. So have his Left-wing supporters.

The key to understanding Obama is not Marxism. The key is that he and his wife both lost their licenses to practice law in Illinois.

The Obamas were both social climbers from early in their lives. They are good, old-fashioned liberals, and they learned a crucial social skill as teenagers: how to work white academic liberals’ racial guilt. They are both bright, so they were perfect for academia. Their presence on campus allowed liberal academia to fill its mandated, self-imposed quota system. They are both a lot like Al Sharpton, but their original market was academia, not the media.

They got to the top socially by getting certified by way of Columbia University, Princeton University, and law school. They had it made. And then . . . whammo! No more certification. They had learned to manipulate academia, but they failed to manipulate the Illinois Bar Association. First, it was Michelle in 1994. Then Obama in 2008. The mainstream media have of course covered this up, but Google uncovers it.

From the day that he surrendered his license in January, 2008, his handlers had him on a tight leash. They still do. He has a deep-set need: to keep concealed the reason for his retroactive de-certification.

There is widespread speculation on the Web, which I regard as plausible, that this is why he refuses to release his undergraduate transcripts. His grades were fine. His problem is this: the name on these records cannot be successfully altered retroactively. It was not the name he told the Illinois Bar Association was his. He was asked if he had ever used a different name. He said yes. Academia did not care. The Bar Association does.

WHAT KIND OF MARXISM?

Around the Web, I read that Obama is a Marxist. I think it’s worth considering.

The best place to begin our search for an answer is the Communist Manifesto. It was written by Karl Marx and Frederick Engels in 1847. It was published anonymously in German in London in February 1848.

The document presents the case for proletarian revolution: the working class. It does not describe the future communist paradise that will emerge from the revolution. The revolution will not initially bring the final communist state, the document said. But it will bring the first stage, when the proletarians take charge. We read the following.

We have seen above that the first step in the revolution by the working class is to raise the proletariat to the position of ruling class to win the battle of democracy.

The proletariat will use its political supremacy to wrest, by degree, all capital from the bourgeoisie, to centralize all instruments of production in the hands of the state, i.e., of the proletariat organized as the ruling class; and to increase the total productive forces as rapidly as possible.

Of course, in the beginning, this cannot be effected except by means of despotic inroads on the rights of property, and on the conditions of bourgeois production; by means of measures, therefore, which appear economically insufficient and untenable, but which, in the course of the movement, outstrip themselves, necessitate further inroads upon the old social order, and are unavoidable as a means of entirely revolutionizing the mode of production.

These measures will, of course, be different in different countries.

Nevertheless, in most advanced countries, the following will be pretty generally applicable.

1. Abolition of property in land and application of all rents of land to public purposes.

2. A heavy progressive or graduated income tax.

3. Abolition of all rights of inheritance.

4. Confiscation of the property of all emigrants and rebels.

5. Centralization of credit in the banks of the state, by means of a national bank with state capital and an exclusive monopoly.

6. Centralization of the means of communication and transport in the hands of the state.

7. Extension of factories and instruments of production owned by the state; the bringing into cultivation of waste lands, and the improvement of the soil generally in accordance with a common plan.

8. Equal obligation of all to work. Establishment of industrial armies, especially for agriculture.

9. Combination of agriculture with manufacturing industries; gradual abolition of all the distinction between town and country by a more equable distribution of the populace over the country.

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.

#1: NO PRIVATE LAND

“Abolition of property in land and application of all rents of land to public purposes.” Has Obama called for this? No. Has any Democrat elected to Congress called for this? If so, I do not recall it. Do Democrats vote for subsidizing agriculture in the name of the small farmer? Yes. Does the money go to small farmers? No. Where does most of it go? To huge agribusiness firms. Do Republicans support the farm subsidies? Yes.

What about low-interest loans for housing? Both parties vote for this. Does the Federal Reserve promote home ownership by subsidies? Yes. It’s called “Operation Twist.” The FED buys the bonds of Fannie Mae and Freddy Mac, the government’s mortgage agencies. Private investors buy these bonds, too. This lowers mortgage rates. It subsidizes home ownership for the masses.

#2: STEEPLY GRADUATED INCOME TAX

“A heavy progressive or graduated income tax.” Obama probably wants this, although he has not pushed for it. Does he want top rates at (say) 90%. No one in the Democratic Party has called for this. Yet it was 91% under Eisenhower. Kennedy’s most important law lowered this to 70%. Reagan got it to 28%. Democrats voted for this, so great was the public demand. So, there is no evidence that Obama wants to return the top rate to the Marxism of the older Republican Party, which controlled both Houses of Congress and the White House, 1953-55.

#3. INHERITANCE

“Abolition of all rights of inheritance.” No Democrat President has called for this. I know of no Democrat at any level who has called for this. Obama is not a Marxist on this issue.

#4. CONFISCATION OF EMIGRANTS’ PROPERTY.

“Confiscation of the property of all emigrants and rebels.” This means everyone who leaves the country. There are taxes on Americans who renounce their citizenship if they are worth over $2 million. They pay a capital gains tax on everything above $600,000. The Democrats passed this it 2008. But there had been a similar tax on people worth more than $2 million that was passed by the government as part of Bush’s American Jobs Creation act of 2004. So, is Obama a Marxist on this point? No more than most other legislators in Congress.

#5 CENTRAL BANKING

“Centralization of credit in the banks of the state, by means of a national bank with state capital and an exclusive monopoly.” The Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System is a government agency. The 12 regional banks are not. So, it is a hybrid. It surely is a monopoly. The FED has had bipartisan support ever since 1913. Obama’s Secretary of the Treasury, Timothy Geithner, was the president of the New York FED, the most powerful of the 12 regional banks, prior to his appointment. Is Obama a Marxist on this point? You bet he is . . . just like everyone else in Congress except Ron Paul.

#6. CENTRALIZED COMMUNICATIONS AND TRANSPORT

“Centralization of the means of communication and transport in the hands of the state.” There is no national politician in the USA who is a Marxist on this point. There never has been.

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Gary North [send him mail] is the author of Mises on Money. Visit http://www.garynorth.com. He is also the author of a free 31-volume series, An Economic Commentary on the Bible.

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