Marxism is Alive and Well: Cambridge, Berkeley and Burlington

Brace yourselves for this one. Marxism is dead. Sure, it holds out in a few bastions; Cambridge, Berkeley and yes, Burlington have yet to learn of its demise.

Thankfully, however, its practical application is all but over. The failings of Cuban socialism are embodied in the well-publicized community of exiles in Miami, many of whom defied death to escape the island, and the fact that Fidel Castro has a net worth of $300 million.

Not to be outdone, Chinese socialism is unparalleled for its human rights abuses, forced abortions and the poverty of its peasants. Posterity is no kinder to Marxism. If one is to calculate the total cost of communism in lives, the death toll of fascism (itself heavily influenced by Marxism) appears mild by comparison.

Between Stalin’s purges, Mao’s Great Leap Forward and Cultural Revolution, the Khmer Rouge genocide largely facilitated by the oft-lionized Vietnam protesters and numerous other communist debacles, an estimated 100,000,000 deaths are directly attributable to Marxism.

The impoverishment of Africa and South America owe neither to globalization nor evil multinationals but to Western-educated rulers who assumed power since WW II propounding Marxism and embarking on socialist policies that have resulted in economic disaster.

America’s tenured faculty and their collegiate prot?©g?©es are not, however, deterred by messy things like facts. Witness Noam Chomsky’s denial of the Cambodian genocide or the New Left’s silence over the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia in ’68 for evidence of this. They have devised a crafty excuse for Marxism’s failings, namely that ‘true socialism’ has never been attempted.

Both Stalin and Mao enacted collectivization and the type of redistribution of wealth and ‘worker’s council’ model of governance advocated by the International Socialist Organization, and similar radical groups; if neither Stalinism nor Maoism represents ‘true socialism,’ I shudder at the ISO’s conception of it. Put simply, what they advocate is communism. Capitalism is undoubtedly imperfect. Some people prosper while others fail, whether because of laziness, bad luck or poor preparation for a market economy. In America, however, the earnings of the successful help fund the safety net that buoys the less prosperous.

The characterization of Bush’s tax cuts as a boon for the wealthy is accurate simply because they pay the preponderance of the taxes. The top 1% of the population earns 19.5% of the GDP but shoulders 36% of the tax burden; the top 5% of wage earners pay 55% of taxes, while the top 1/3 pays 83%. The bottom 50% pays just 5%.

Thus, America demonstrates clearly that the successes of capitalism can make life very comfortable for its less fortunate. It is unfortunate that America’s ‘brightest’ minds continue to advocate the shackling of countries to an oppressive system that has robbed billions of freedoms, killed countless millions and caused still more to languish in poverty.

Thankfully, the decision to embrace democracy and free-market capitalism rather than a regime based on economic and political coercion rests not with the American intelligentsia but with the affected people. Cuban refugees, Vietnamese ‘boat people’ and millions of others have chosen to cast their ballots with their feet.

The votes have been tallied and the carcass of Soviet communism stands as a historical monument to victor and vanquished. Unfortunately, ‘intellectuals’ on this campus and others like it have yet to get the message.