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Responses to American Communist Party . Why . The American Communist Party (CPUSA) has a dangerous belief: that the most murderous system in history ( communism/ socialism should be implemented in the USA.

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slide2
Why

The American Communist Party (CPUSA) has a dangerous belief: that the most murderous system in history ( communism/ socialism should be implemented in the USA.

slide3
Socialism will solve many of the intractable problems of capitalism, and provide the mechanisms for solving others over time

This actually contradicts another part of the document.

Socialism is not a utopian system, but bases social programs on the achievements of social production.

Socialism would not create an instant workers paradise.

What do they think solving intractable problems is? And what is “social production”?

So it will eventually create a worker’s paradise? Yes, definitely not utopian

slide4

Socialist United States will guarantee all the freedoms we have won over centuries of struggle, and also extend the Bill of Rights to include freedom from unemployment, from poverty, from illiteracy, and from discrimination and oppression. Socialism will guarantee the right to vote, to health care, to a job at a living wage, to decent housing

Freedom from unemployment- so will they create jobs that wouldn’t otherwise exist or will they retrain?

Freedom from poverty- poverty is a relative term, 97% of poor households in the US have TVs. See the heritage link for more things the poor have.

http://www.heritage.org/research/reports/2007/08/how-poor-are-americas-poor-examining-the-plague-of-poverty-in-america

Freedom from illiteracy- people have to want to learn to learn

Freedom from discrimination and oppression- some would say a socialist government would oppress corporations

Right to health care- so we have a right to the labor of others?- decent housing (who built the house)

Right to a job at a living wage- many menial jobs aren’t at living wages, but what if that is all someone is qualified to? Does society have to accommodate itself to the individual?

comparison of bill of rights with socialist rights
Comparison of Bill of Rights with socialist rights

Selected Bill of rights

Selected Socialist Rights

  • Freedom of religion, the press, speech , assembly, petition
  • Freedom to keep and bear arms
  • No soldier can be quartered without consent
  • No warrantless searches and seizures
  • Basically protection from the government
  • Freedom from poverty
  • Freedom from illiteracy
  • Freedom from unemployment
  • Freedom from oppression
  • Protection from conditions that might be self- inflicted
slide6

Socialism, rather, is a phase of social-economic development during which millions of people increasingly decide their own destiny and work step-by-step to build new democratic institutions to run the economy. Socialism would provide mechanisms by which working people can all work together cooperatively to extend political democracy into substantive democracy in all spheres of social life including the economy.

They never state why a democratic economy is desirable. Why should people be chosen to run it based on how good they woo the voters, instead of merit? If there is so much dissatisfaction with elected officials today, how would a democratic economy be a good thing? Besides, a democracy is a political system and political systems do not transfer over well to economics, simply because the economy is much more variable than government is. Look at all the times the economy has been hurt to protect some interest group(like farmers).

Decide their own destiny, haven’t they heard of college major?

The polarization in politics also makes it unlikely that electing economic leaders would extend cooperation. There is also the issue of the elections themselves. How would they insure the economy is not adversely affected by electioneering?

slide7

It is also a political system where working people led by the working class are the dominant political force. Socialism doesn't only mean nationalization of key industries.

So it does mean that key industries (who decides that) will be nationalized. Basically, key industries (food is the only one I’m sure of) will be run by elected officials more concerned with getting elected than having a safe, efficient food supply.

They also have yet to provide an example of a socialist country led by the working class as well as why a government run by the working class is superior.

slide8

Once the power of the corporations is broken, the vast majority of the country can use the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and local governments to build real democracy and equality

Yes, the corporations are in charge; that is why they are so routinely demonized by others, because they are in charge.

The US is as close to a democracy as it gets without being open to the tyranny of the 51%. They also haven’t explained how the economy could be centrally planned and there could be elections if everyone is equal. As the Theory of Oligarchal Collectivism states, human society is driven by inequality and the desire for advancement. Besides, if everyone is equal, how can it be “from each according to his ability, to each according to his need” ?

slide9

Socialism will eliminate much inequality by taking profit away from the capitalist class and utilizing it for the public good. Workers will be paid according to the principle, from each according to their ability, to each according to their work

So of course, to eliminate inequality, we will treat some unequally and confiscate their money.

Besides, what is the capitalist class? Are they small business owners? Is there a communist class? Perhaps a Fascist class? An anarchic class?

I would argue that the capitalist class does use their profit for the common good. Microsoft’s computer software is used everywhere and without the “capitalist class” computers wouldn’t be accessible to the common man. Today, even lower class people have a standard of living that kings only a century ago would have dreamed of having. But who manufactures the products that have made life easier? The capitalist class.

So demands on people will be based on their abilities and will be paid based on their work. Who decides the rates? It seems that using this system wouldn’t eliminate inequality. Doctors would still get paid more than sewage workers, with the only difference from today being that someone would decide everyone’s work.

slide10
The people of our country have the potential to eliminate the greedy corporations that doom working people to poverty

Again, poverty is relative and public employers are just as bad as private employers for poverty. Since this is the United States, no one is doomed to poverty. They are just one invention, one business, one idea away from “ making it” They also fail to explain how that would be beneficial to the people. Eliminate the corporations, and hundreds of thousands lose their jobs. The products that we are dependent on don’t get manufactured, nothing gets shipped. The corporations don’t doom working people to poverty (since almost everyone works, this is a stupid term) and this is proved by simple logic. If the corporations doom working people to poverty, than who is going to buy their products. They have an interest in making sure their employees make enough money to consume their products.

slide11
where the anarchy and destructive competition of capitalism are replaced by a strategically planned economy

This more than any other sentence reveals what the communists want and think: they want to control people’s lives and feel that only a group of talented people (themselves naturally) can adequately run things.

Capitalism’s competition is not destructive. To prove it, compare the DMV and car dealerships. The DMV has a monopoly. Lines are long and service isn’t that good. By contrast, car dealerships actively work to attract customers with ads and varieties of cars. That is the beauty of competition. The companies must continually innovate and make products of a certain type, otherwise they will fall behind and go out of business.

How well did strategic planning work for the Soviet Union? And what exactly is strategic planning? Is it a series of 5 year plans that establish quotas and production goals for everyone? Who would be a strategic economic planner? What are their qualifications? How will they insure a dynamic wealth generating economy as well as who takes what jobs?

slide12

Socialism would bring social ownership to the commanding heights of the economy the major industrial firms, the transnational corporations, banks and other financial institutions, the energy industry, much of the national distribution system, and the health care system and run them as public utilities, with publicly elected boards, responsible to and for the public good, and for long-term economic and environmental sustainability.

How will we elect these people? Will national elections take place or will it be on a state by state basis? Also, how will publically elected boards prevent the polarization that is seen in congress? With hundreds of companies, do elections honestly make sense? Will new start ups be publicized? How would they be held responsible for the public good?

Those are questions but there are some concerns. Economic sustainability doesn’t exist. Economic systems change over time but the whole point of sustainability is to be able to freeze something at one point in time and maintain that something indefinitely. That is a stupid goal. We are humans. You can’t plan for a hundred years in the past. We do not know what our descendents require and it is pointless, indeed downright awful, to think that our way of life has to be able to be maintained by those descendents, in effect freezing societal, technological and economic progress. In 1900, people would have said that the horse was unsustainable. They would have maintained that future cities would be drowning in horse manure and thus we would have to curtail horses and make more people walk to save our cities. Similarly, people in the 1700s decried the declining levels of wood for heating and warned that people needed to wear heavier clothing inside and reduce the amount of wood they were burning.

sustainability continued
Sustainability continued

But cities didn’t drown in horse manure in the 1930s and people didn’t freeze to death due to lack of wood. Scientific advancement led to the car, which launched a societal revolution, and coal, which was available in much larger quantities than wood. Similarly, today we are on the verge of a revolution in nano-technology and computing. This will utterly alter society. Manufacturing will produce less pollution and better quality products that are manufactured on the nano scale. Computers will collect even more data that will improve health significantly. If room temperature super conductors are developed, transportation will improve it’s efficiency to almost unimaginable levels. But, we could freeze ourselves here, on the verge of the revolution under the guise that our descendents won’t advance at all over us and will need the exact same things and do things the exact same way. So, what happens when sustainability runs against the public good ( and it probably will happen).

slide14

Public programs for free health care, free education through the college level, combating illiteracy, ending malnutrition, and guaranteeing jobs would be built

There is no such thing as “free” healthcare or education. Someone has to pay for it. And since the “capitalist class” has already had their wealth confiscated, who is going to pay for it? If everyone can get free college, what’s to stop everyone from applying only to the top colleges? While it is sad, college costs do serve one important social function: some people can’t afford a 4 year college and thus they enter the workforce earlier doing jobs that no one wants to do but need to be done. Otherwise, there would be a glut of college graduates being oppressed and all they could do is take it since there would be millions of college graduates every year and if one quits, so what? Besides, if jobs are guaranteed, why will people need to go to college? And if they go to college, will they get to pick their own major? They can’t, or else the government would have to create jobs in certain sectors to make sure the college grads get jobs. Guaranteeing jobs is also not possible or practical. New technology can make some jobs obsolete (elevator operator) and other jobs just shouldn’t exist [soviet nuclear reactor cleaner was a job that fulfilled the role that robots played in US nuclear reactors, consider it a “ jobs program” (especially since radiation exposure would ensure high turnover rates{ literally, like turning over a body})]

whose wealth is unearned
whose wealth is unearned

This refers to rich people. Never mind the work they put into starting and running successful companies that have provided products that vastly improved everyone’s lives. Never mind that they took government projects and democratized them, (radar, jet engines, computers) allowing ordinary people to have access to them. It doesn’t matter that since they own the company they can earn whatever they want and if you don’t like it, start your own. No, what matters is that they belong to the wrong class and thus are oppressors.

slide16

A socialist government draws up plans covering the entire economy. They are drawn up with maximum participation of the people, from the shop level on up. Such plans are achieved because they harmonize the interests of all, because there are no conflicts arising from exploitation of workers and no dog-eat-dog competition.

Sadly, interests can’t be harmonized. In the pre-civil war United States, the industrialists wanted tariffs to protect against foreign competition while the agriculturalists wanted no tariffs so goods would be cheap. There was no way to harmonize their interests. So, over 100 million people would be involved in planning the economy. All of them with agendas that conflict with someone. They should provide historical proof in the legions of socialist nations that their agenda works. The kulaks probably weren’t consulted when Stalin basically declared war on them. And there is no competition, so efficiency is not necessary, neither is quality. Competition does serve a purpose. It makes innovation and constant improvement necessary. The corporations broke out of monopolies not only because of the government, but also because horizontal integration is less efficient than vertical integration. Vertical integration was a much better process, making those who hesitated have to jump on the band wagon or get left in the dust.

slide17

Production increases much faster than under capitalism, with a planned economy, advancement of science and technology, and the protection and preservation of our environment and natural resources.

Again, no historical evidence and no common sense. How and why would production increase when you are guaranteed a job? After all, it is extra work for no reward. And don’t say people would do it for the good of society. Hostess went bankrupt because its union couldn’t sacrifice to save the company. If it failed with a single company, why would it work on a nation scale? Science and technology also don’t advance under socialism. Under capitalism, companies have an interest in developing new technology to get ahead of the pack (Ipad), but under socialism, since there is no “dog eat dog competition” why should new things be developed? The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics had 18 Nobel Prize winners, while the US had 202 in the same time period. Natural resources are useless unless they are used. Talking about preserving them is like talking about preserving your car by never driving it. They assume (once again) that our descendents will need the exact same things we need and will be incapable of getting them without our help.

since its inception capitalism has been fatally flawed
Since its inception capitalism has been fatally flawed

Yes, fatally flawed. That is why it is still here today while the Soviet Union and East Germany have been relegated to the trash bin of history. Marx never set foot in a factory. Since his theory is about workers, how’s that for fatally flawed? The United States spent 4% of GDP on defense during the cold war. The Soviets spent 40% and still fell behind. Clearly, capitalism is fatally flawed. That is why the US has some of the richest citizenry on the planet.

history is a continuous story of people rising up against those who exploit and oppress them
History is a continuous story of people rising up against those who exploit and oppress them

How can they categorize all that happened in history as one thing? History is far more complex than that. The Germans were exploited by the Nazis and they didn’t rise up. The slaves were exploited and oppressed and they didn’t rise up (some did, but the vast majority didn’t). Free blacks didn’t rise up. In czarist Russia, the workers didn’t take control, intellectuals did. However, people did rise up against the Soviet Union and Communist China. Maybe the communists are on to something. Perhaps they should say history is a series of bad miscalculations. After all, in the Soviet Union, 2+2=5 on propaganda posters.

slide20

Internationally, it wasn’t until the 7th Congress of the Communist International in 1935 that this sectarian policy was corrected. In his address to that gathering, Georgi Dimitrov said that the immediate strategic task was not socialism, but rather to defeat the growing fascist threat

That explains the German Soviet Non-Aggression Pact. The vaterland (Germany) allied with the rodina (motherland aka Russia)

slide21

Society and government should have the responsibility to steadily improve the lives of the majority. Government and the people should measure progress by the improvements in human rights and justice, in living standards, in real equality, in environmental sustainability

The U.S. has better human rights than all socialist countries; justice is ill defined and its definition varies from person to person.

Living standards are some of the highest in the world already. What is real equality? The only way we could achieve that would be to bring the rich down. Now, is that equality, to take someone’s hard earned money just because you don’t like their class?

What is progress in environmental sustainability? How would one measure it? Should that take precedence over providing jobs or “increasing living standards?

conclusion
Conclusion

There are a lot of problems with the American Communist Party and unless they solve them, they will forever be a minority party that does absolutely nothing.

Based on their arguments, this is the leader of the American Communist Party .

The 2012 CPUSA presidential candidate.