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I don't know what happens here anymore. Looks like there's an invasion of US one-way-minds aka. trolls lately. Contrary to Russian or Chinese or whatever trolls WB is being infected by narrow-minded idiots who haven't read news or went to school somewhere to unlearn their "communist" fantasies. McCarthy was in the 1950's, so I assume the writers and commenters here who so feverously defend their neoliberalism against "communists" might be about 110 years old :-)


Or they stupidly repeat what their parents told them back then. I mean, hey, today is 2018. Everybody should have figured by now that these slogans and keywords are NOT what really matters. They are a distraction from what really happens behind the scenes. What that is, or could be, is not clear yet, but it tends to the NWO, seeing the drive for all-over surveillance and the tendency to "unite" whole areas of the planet - it started with the EU. And this is a development which has nada to do with communism but - neoliberalism. Global neo-feudalism, if you will. A perverted form of capitalism. Your favorite -ism, right ?


I really don't understand how people in 2018 can be so stubborn and ignorant that they still live mentally in the 20th century or even before that. Reminds me of fanatical muslims of the Wahhabia tribe (:-) which would prefer to be beamed back to the 7th century AD.


Scotty, where are you, help !


So please, try to arrive in TODAY. Ask yourself: Do I really understand what I'm talking about ?


And then you might be in for a surprise :-)


Koshersalaami Added Dec 2, 2018 - 12:28pm
If I could Like this twice, I would. I really don’t get the sheer idiocy of communism being raised as a danger, an ideology, an anything. Communism at this point has no real power and no real following, and it has zero to do with liberalism. Government services does not equal abolition of private property or Orwellian control of the population. This is an odd biological cross between a straw dog and a red herring. 
Katharine Otto Added Dec 2, 2018 - 12:33pm
We're living in a paranoid world, and it knows no political, religious, or common sense boundaries.   Fear is the common denominator.  You are among those who believe in man's basic evil and stupidity, I gather (correct me if I'm wrong).  Multiply that by several billion and you might understand why everyone is so afraid.
What to do about it?  In the past, you've cited some notable exceptions to your own beliefs in man's hopelessness.  It might behoove all of us to put more effort into finding things to like about our fellow opposable-thumbers.  Just think.  Only humans can play the guitar, thanks to those opposable thumbs.  I still believe man is of good intent, even if I can't prove it.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 2, 2018 - 12:41pm
Government services does not equal abolition of private property or Orwellian control of the population. 
Exactly. People are strange. One one hand they accept their private life being distributed all over the planet by the Internet, and on the other hand they complain about lacking privacy and surveillance !
The same goes for communism or socialism (most don't even know the difference). They don't understand that basic services like health, energy, water and food have to be strictly controlled and made available at no-profit costs (= at the cost of pure maintenance) for everybody but private enterprises in other areas are not touched by that. Sheez....
Stone-Eater Added Dec 2, 2018 - 12:50pm
No, I don't believe man is evil....but stupid, as long as he doesn't decide to use his brain for more than 9 to 5. The problem is that people are sheep. They are content to repeat a tabloid media (or "expert") opinion. Whatever happens on the planet has a history that leads to today and will lead into tomorrow. There is a string one can follow. 
People like Kissinger or Brzezinski (which are, to me, examples of the evil you talked about) knew that and wrote books about it. But people who are comfy with soap operas and a daily tabloid don't care.
They are the ones who talk about "communists" and "shithole countries".
Stone-Eater Added Dec 2, 2018 - 12:57pm
Your stuff has been deleted (as the only WB'er here). You're not welcome on my articles. I told you. As I won't write on yours anymore as well. 
opher goodwin Added Dec 2, 2018 - 1:03pm
Stone - McCartyism, in all its stupidity, lives on. A bit of scaremongering that was so farcical at the time, and outlawed such patriotic and sincerely moral people as Woody Guthrie and Pete Seeger, is still alive today.
The fear of communism is simply daft.
The tendency to label anything with the slightest liberal or socialist tones as communist is ignorant.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 2, 2018 - 1:12pm
My words. even more so because the original idea of communism had the goal of equal treatment and possibilities for everybody. It was simply misused and never properly introduced. If it would work or not is another question - it would need an educated and empathic population. But what we see is that neoliberalism does NOT work in the long run. 
What goes on my nerves are the people who call themselves Christian and don't see the fact that the Jesus' teachings were clearly directed to what we call social democracy or socialism (or even communism) today in Europe.
Crying communism and damning the Russians is easy and is absolutely short-sighted and stupid and can only be done comfortably when sitting on the other side of the ocean.
Jeff Michka Added Dec 2, 2018 - 1:39pm
Interesting observations, SEFa.  Seems on WB there all this rightist "virtue signaling" by saying, "So and so is 'Marxist," "So and so is Leninist, or Stalinist, or my fav....Maoist.  "Communist" is an umbrella.  When pressed, none of the rightists calling things Marxist, Leninist, etc., can tell you what Marxian tenet 'so and so" is.  Same with Leninist or Stalinist or Maoist, whatever just "is."  Unlike you, I don't think Russia is a friend of America, nor do I believe the minimal sanctions imposed are going to lead to tossing nukes around.  "My gawd, they've prohibited Alpha bank from conducting business in the US, we need to stop them by starting WWIII."  I don't think even Trump is that stupid, let alone Putin.  And let Ryan babble.  He makes himself a bigger fool each time he comments.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 2, 2018 - 1:56pm
Ryan can babble elsewhere :-)
I don't think that Russians have anything against the US per se. When I listen to Putin's speeches, he's a hell of a lot more reasonable than Orange Cowboy. But we don't know what happens behind the scenes anyway. Media can't be trusted. They are the simplifiers which send all their loony followers into posting their unfounded prejudices and false interpretations onto the net LOL
Mr. Vengeance Added Dec 2, 2018 - 1:59pm
@ Stone  - Spoken like a true Communist, lol. If you ever want to see a good movie, watch Big Jim McClain starring John Wayne. Big Jim travels to Hawaii (a PERFECT place for a Communist uprising) to break up a Communist ring that is evidently responsible for all of the island's ills, including earthquakes and volcanoes. The best lines of the movie that I remember are:
Woman: "'re not afraid of anything, are you?"
Big Jim McClain: "Yes I am. I'm afraid of...Communism."
Neil Lock Added Dec 2, 2018 - 2:16pm
See, I (among others) told you so! Jeff Michka can make a comment that is not only constructive, but hits the nail!
But Stone-Eater, there are still communists (and even Communists) around. In Nepal, for example, they had a Maoist insurgency back in about 2006, and it isn't easy to find out what has happened there since. Other countries, like Zimbabwe and Venezuela, have gone in similar directions, even if it isn't called communism. Even Portugal still has a functional Communist Party. Myself, I think those who apply the label "communist" (or even "socialist") to bad regimes of today aren't strictly correct, but they do have a point. Any system that subordinates the individual to some "society" - particularly if he or she doesn't even feel a part of it - isn't going to make people happy.
George N Romey Added Dec 2, 2018 - 2:23pm
Stone there’s a lot of stupid people out there and the Internet brings them out like ants to a picnic.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 2, 2018 - 3:21pm
Paranoia is one thing.....;)
Stone-Eater Added Dec 2, 2018 - 3:24pm
Other countries, like Zimbabwe and Venezuela, have gone in similar directions,
These are not communists in the real sense. They use that label simply to get into power by promising people better life conditions. I wonder how these people live in private......not in a small apartment I guess....
Stone-Eater Added Dec 2, 2018 - 3:43pm
Seems like...
Koshersalaami Added Dec 2, 2018 - 7:48pm
The reason Russia has a problem with us now is that we continued to treat a country that had gotten rid of its communist government and stopped exporting a revolution as if it were still a threat. We never made an effort to understand what the Russians/Soviets went through during WWII. I recently read an article explaining what the US, about the same population as the USSR during WWII, would look like with the same Nazi invasion. It was utterly frightening. What the Russians went through is something the US can’t imagine, and the vast majority of Germany’s resources were on the Eastern Front. That’s where the real war was. Given that, of course the Soviets wanted a buffer zone in case they were ever invaded again. And, after the fall of communism in Eastern Europe, we went and pushed NATO to their border and tried to replace Ukraine’s government. And while we were treating the Russians as a threat they weren’t, we were also not treating them like the world power they were. That would inevitably make the population yearn for certain aspects of the Soviet Union, so they turned to a KGB agent for leadership. 
I don’t blame Putin. We created the need for Putin. 
Koshersalaami Added Dec 2, 2018 - 8:07pm
By the way, regarding communism as shorthand, it’s bad shorthand. Even socialism is bad shorthand, but communism is just wrong shorthand. 
Koshersalaami Added Dec 2, 2018 - 11:06pm
Like they’ll listen. 
You not from here?
Koshersalaami Added Dec 3, 2018 - 12:37am
We’re still dependent on a shared vocabulary. Whether or not you think I’m a jackass, I know what you mean by “jackass” and it isn’t that I’m literally equine. But there are people here who think liberals are at heart that collectivist and also that oppressive. For them I don’t think it’s shorthand, I think it’s a real accusation. And that means that people who use it as shorthand and don’t really mean it will probably not be understood. 
If we were in a reasonable environment, sure, but we aren’t. It takes a while to figure out who has any objectivity at all and any respect for objectivity and who doesn’t. 
Stone-Eater Added Dec 3, 2018 - 2:40am
Theoretically basic services are and should be non-profit but that is only because we don’t call taxes profit for politicians, which to a great extent they have become. The politicians use these profits to buy unemployment insurance for themselves, votes.
Our taxes go into the overboarding social security net mostly nowadays. Means first of all into the employees of that "industry" who treat the dossiers of the unemployed. In clear text the unemployed provide fully paid jobs to these people by being unemployed while their "clients" get barely enough to live on....
Stone-Eater Added Dec 3, 2018 - 2:46am
communism demands that humans be reprogrammed in ways that far exceed Western democracy's demand that people live under a system of Laws.
Might be, but you can also say:
neoliberalism demands that humans be programmed in ways that far exceed democracy's demand that people live under a system of laws.
In reality, since neoliberalism (aka. 2018 capitalism) has begun to rule, that so-called freedom and rights have become a hoax. Take any 5$ job you can get to get through, be programmed by the media, and let the upper class make its profit. In return they serve you bread crumbs in form of soap kitchens.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 3, 2018 - 2:50am
Your comment
The reason Russia has a problem with us now is that we continued to treat a country that...
is spot on, A lot of us Europeans see it that way. And let me tell you that here these "shorthands", as you call it, are not being used at all. It's very rare to hear someone using any -ism as an insult or accusation.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 3, 2018 - 2:56am
BTW Mogg
Write you article about guitars. That's my playing field :-)
Ken Added Dec 3, 2018 - 4:42am
Sorry, but this is just flat out ignorant.
Just to start with, the false identification of "McCarthyism" is just that, false.  The Venona papers released in 1995 by the KGB showed that McCarthy was accurate on virtually everything.  He was an uncharismatic poor communicator but his message was correct.  We also know that Several Communists were working in the FDR administration Alger Hiss being a top person in the cabinet, among many others.
A "troll" to you is apparently one who simply believes differently than you.  I am probably considered part of this so called "invasion" you speak of, and yet I back up my assertions with facts.  Whether you choose to believe them or not, even when backed up, that is NOT "trolling"
This post is a disgraceful attack on those that disagree with your point of view.  And your POV is skewed because you simply don't get Individual liberty and the American ideal.
It is astounding to me that you consider yourself so much better than everyone else that different opinions are "stupidly what their parents told them" or other inane reasons.
It couldn't possibly be that some of us have read Ruseau, Marx, Hagel and see what is happening, could it?
It couldn't be that some value individual liberty over the collective?
Nope, not at all, we are all trolls...
Stone-Eater Added Dec 3, 2018 - 5:39am
You didn't get what I mean. I pointed out that this is 2018, not 1950. This is the whole message. Fear of "communism" today is simple delusional. Read more carefully if possible.
FacePalm Added Dec 3, 2018 - 6:30am
The thing you may not be aware of, SE, is that western capitalists financed not only the Bolshevik revolution, but also that of Mao.  They were implementing a strategy now known as "strategic tension," on the surface, but beneath that, the moneyed powers knew they only got obscenely-high profits during wars, so they deliberately started and continued them as long as possible, supplying both sides to rack up the sacrifices to their false god called "profit."
All the "isms" and "ists" in this world are but tools with which to manipulate "the masses" into agreeing that "only" the NWO/OWG of unelected satanist pedophiles is fit to rule the world.  Their "working model" has been the EU; they attempted to get various other "unions" going globally, but have failed - and as more and more nationalists wake up to the danger they're in, are leaving their "perfect model for a new world order" in droves, based on the new Italian leader's promise to rid his country of the muslim invaders, as well as the defiance of Austria, Hungary, Poland, and the Czech republic to the dictates from Brussels.
As such, your premise that "communism is irrelevant today" is only partially correct.  Many currently identify themselves as communists, including large numbers currently making up the population of antifa and anarchists in general(though by supporting "communism," they ignorantly disavow anarchism completely, anyway).  They're just useful idiots, doing what they do best: being used.
The real danger the planet faces is from the NWO cretins, who use any ideology whatsoever to accomplish their goals, mainly along the lines of "divide and conquer," which, until this late day and age, had ALWAYS proven successful.  As long as these wealthy SOB's can distract us into fighting each other, they "win."
This has been their strategy for hundreds of years, often by means of the "agent provocateur" who initiates a false flag intended to create a cascade/domino effect, helped along deviantly by their horns in main stream media - like the king of "yellow journalism," Hearst, who sent reporters into Cuba to take pictures, and not to worry about evidence because HE'D start the war.  Here's yet more evidence:

The Banker’s Manifesto of 1893


“We (the bankers) must proceed with caution and guard every move made, for the lower order of people are already showing signs of restless commotion. Prudence will therefore show a policy of apparently yielding to the popular will until our plans are so far consummated that we can declare our designs without fear of any organized resistance.
Organizations in the United States should be carefully watched by our trusted men, and we must take immediate steps to control these organizations in our interest or disrupt them.
At the coming Omaha convention to be held July 4, 1892, our men must attend and direct its movement or else there will be set on foot such antagonism to our designs as may require force to overcome. This at the present time would be premature. We are not yet ready for such a crisis. Capital must protect itself in every possible manner through combination (conspiracy) and legislation.
The courts must be called to our aid, debts must be collected, bonds and mortgages foreclosed as rapidly as possible.
When, through the process of law, the common people have lost their homes, they will be more tractable and easily governed through the influence of the strong arm of the government applied to a central power of imperial wealth under the control of the leading financiers. People without homes will not quarrel with their leaders. History repeats itself in regular cycles. This truth is well known among our principle men who are engaged in forming an imperialism of the world. While they are doing this, the people must be kept in a state of political antagonism.
The question of tariff reform must be urged through the organization known as the Democratic Party, and the question of protection with the reciprocity must be forced to view through the Republican Party.
By thus dividing voters, we can get them to expend their energies in fighting over questions of no importance to us, except as teachers to the common herd. Thus, by discrete actions, we can secure all that has been so generously planned and successfully accomplished.”
Revealed by Congressman Charles A. Lindbergh, Sr. to the U.S. Congress sometime between 1907 and 1917.
opher goodwin Added Dec 3, 2018 - 7:18am
Stone - I thoroughly agree. Jesus was a commie!!
It always seems to me that the more religious the person the less they follow what Jesus stood for.
Welcome the little children - shoot the fuck out of the immigrant caravan.
Koshersalaami Added Dec 3, 2018 - 8:14am
Jackass was an example in terminology. I do not assume that you meant to call me a jackass; in fact, I have every reason to assume you didn’t. Sorry, it was not my intention to imply an accusation. In terms of worst case scenario, we live in one on this site. “Communist” means more than one thing right here, and so terminology becomes important. 
By the way, I play a late seventies Hummingbird. I picked it up used a few years ago, having lost my original early seventies satin finish D28 to a pawn shop during a difficult period. Oddly enough, I prefer the Hummingbird, though I am primarily not a guitarist at all but a keyboard player. 
We’re not faced with the dichotomy of two choices: communism and neoliberalism. If those were the only two alternatives I’d be tempted to shoot myself. I’d say that whoever came up with the analysis about communism demanding human reprogramming was right, regardless of what he thinks of neoliberalism. 
Leroy Added Dec 3, 2018 - 9:34am
We must be vigilant against the Red Menace.  As long as there are those who believe that the only problem with communism is that it was done right, we must stand guard.  We must attack it at the philosophical level, not merely say that it doesn't work.  It is an evil contrary to the nature of man.
What I get tired of is all the blather about those blathering against communism.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 3, 2018 - 10:30am
The real danger the planet faces is from the NWO cretins, who use any ideology whatsoever to accomplish their goals, mainly along the lines of "divide and conquer," which, until this late day and age, had ALWAYS proven successful.  As long as these wealthy SOB's can distract us into fighting each other, they "win."
Fully agree.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 3, 2018 - 10:33am
Stone-Eater Added Dec 3, 2018 - 10:35am
I’d say that whoever came up with the analysis about communism demanding human reprogramming was right, regardless of what he thinks of neoliberalism. 
If you talk about reprogramming there must have been a first programming before that. And I'm not sure if that programming was better. Any kind of (re)programming means that there's not really a choice of objectively developing a POV.
George N Romey Added Dec 3, 2018 - 10:36am
Russia is no longer Communism.  In reality ditto China.  Cuba not really.  When are Americans going to stop being afraid of something that no longer exists. I guess these are the same people that think there's an evil man in the moon spying on them.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 3, 2018 - 10:46am
As we have said before even those were never really communist countries. They were capitalist for a "communist" elite only....
FacePalm Added Dec 3, 2018 - 2:55pm
In truth, there has never been a true "communist worker's paradise" as envisioned by Marx/Engels and their adherents/acolytes.  Both of these were quite unclear as how exactly to transition out of socialism into communism - and besides, the party members lived far better than the rank'n'file, and had both the military and spy services to keep the rest in check, so there was zero motivation for them to try anything other than what they had...until approx. 80 years of totalitarian nightmares were brought to an end.  i can't say WHAT kind of governance Russia currently has, except maybe a "benevolent dictatorship" run by Putin, but he's been anything BUT benevolent for some time, now.
The closest any human habitation came to the "ideal" of the worker's paradise was in some of the earliest Christian communities, where all things were held/shared in common - but unlike the atheistic socialists, they worshiped God-who-is-Love, our Heavenly Father, and sought to embody this love in their daily activities.
But then, the Messano -types came along and spoiled it all...
Mr. Vengeance Added Dec 3, 2018 - 3:24pm
Stone, the fact is that you're a Communist. Opher too. Anyone who implores and cajoles others to read Marx is a Communist, just the same way someone trying to get you to read the Bible, the Koran, or whatever is religious. I've seen you do that numerous times here, and you've pitched me on it, too. OF COURSE you don't like anyone putting down Communism, lol.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 3, 2018 - 3:49pm
That reprogramming didn't work with the ordinary guy. He was forced to obey and going along with the party doctrine. As soon as that was taken off him, he went straight back to his old traditions and religions. That was not communism in its real sense but pure dictatorship in the name of "communism" or "socialism".
Stone-Eater Added Dec 3, 2018 - 3:51pm
Yep. Your comment says it.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 3, 2018 - 3:56pm
I have never read Marx or Engels or the Bible or any other best-seller thoroughly, just parts of them. I just take the general attitude of them all and then pick the points that correspond with my impression or opinion of "doing the right thing". Purely personal. In a way the Jesus speeches and socialism's ideals are pretty 1:1. I do prefer any system that produces as much justice and equality for all possible to any system of systematic exploitation of the weaker ones for profit for a few. Call it idealism and wishful thinking - that's ok with me :-)
Koshersalaami Added Dec 3, 2018 - 4:43pm
There are reasons to read Marx that have nothing to do with being a communist. Marx had two roles: that of economic theorist and that of nineteenth century Romantic utopian. The second is where communism comes from, but Marx is enormously influential in the first role, and should be. Marx is the guy who taught us that a lot more of politics than we thought is based on economics. He’s the one who really taught us to follow the money. If you look at the second Iraq war and conclude that we were really over there for oil profits, you’re influenced by Marx. 
Dave Volek Added Dec 3, 2018 - 5:01pm
I'm a big believer in a Guaranteed Basic Income (GBI). It's one the few ideologies I have adhered to since high school.
To put my reasons in a short way, a GBI will reduce the number of social programs dramatically saving lots of taxpayer money. It will take out politicians and civil servants from making the decisions as to who gets aid or not.  Everyone gets it. If someone wants more than basic subsistence, they have to find a job. Everyone still has free choice.
A GBI is going to re-structure the workplace and workforce. And such restructuring should take place slowly. I suggest that a GBI starts off with $200 a month, then society should monitor how that is working.
Why did I tell you all this? Well, it's because by being an advocate of a GBI, I will be eventually leading the slaughter of millions of people, just like Stalin and Mao. For some thinkers, this is an easy conclusion to make.
Jeff Jackson Added Dec 3, 2018 - 7:24pm
Stone, we have elected some socialists to the Congress of the United States, who want a base salary for every citizen and college for free for everyone. While that might not be communism, it certainly is socialism. If they start giving college away for free, I will be the first to insist that they give me my money back, as I paid for mine.
wsucram15 Added Dec 3, 2018 - 7:30pm
SEF..I have nothing against Russia or its people, it looks like a pretty country in the city anyway.  The architecture is unique.
But I dont like Putin and I told you why...I dont like Trump as a President for the same reason.  Erdoan same reason..Xi same reason.
I dont like autocrats or rulers...Putin is a ruler, not an elected leader.
If you cant discus that portion of his leadership, then we dont have anything more to discus.
I dont believe in a red wall or communism. There is a huge difference between what he does and communism.  There might be some parallels but in communism, like North Korea, they love it.  In Russia, some of them love Putin,  the ones that dont..lose everything go to jail or die.
wsucram15 Added Dec 3, 2018 - 7:35pm
Also SEF..Putin is very relaxed when he speaks and at times very honest it would seem. He has no hesitation admitting some of the things he has been accused of...
What can anyone do to him..slap him?  He poisons everyone.
He is trained and a political figure od what 18 years, SEF..of course he is versed and knows how handle himself.
Trump is well, Trump.
Stephen Hunter Added Dec 3, 2018 - 9:14pm
Boggles my mind as well Stone. A couple of things; many still associate communism/socialism with Totalitarianism and #2 they just do not want to admit their daddy was wrong. 
Jeff Michka Added Dec 3, 2018 - 9:33pm
Ah, so fresh from the field throwing an election in NC, Leroy rejoins us.  Must be a Leninist streak in Leroy, or is it a Stalinist or Maoist streak? Dunno, but seems the ist tagging ain't over here.  Nice article with good info, SEFa.  The rightists calling this or that Communist, Leninist, Stalinist, and Maoist is the same ol bullshit to "virtue signal" other rightists to ensure those other rightists know the aspersionist is "one of them."  And as a good KGB operative, of course Putin appears relaxed.  He'll never bear any blame for any of Russia's problems, and has a loyal following of oligarchs, much like Orange douche bag would like to have.  Putin doesn't have a contradictory press to deal with, so can be relaxed.
Mr. Vengeance Added Dec 4, 2018 - 4:25am
@ Stone - "I have never read Marx or Engels"
Then why the fuck do you plug them so enthusiastically and frequently? Maybe if you read them, you'd change your tune...and frequency.
"I just take the general attitude of them all and then pick the points that correspond with my impression or opinion of "doing the right thing"."
In other words, you "cherry pick". Not unlike most religious people I know. The world would be a much better place if everyone was like you.
"I do prefer any system that produces as much justice and equality for all possible to any system of systematic exploitation of the weaker ones for profit for a few."
The closest I can possibly come to that would be a meritocracy. I find it disturbing yet not surprising that you value mob rule, mob justice, laziness, weakness, and stupidity more than their more productive opposites. But, to each is their own, lol.
FacePalm Added Dec 4, 2018 - 4:47am
"A communist is one who reads Marx and Lenin.  An EX-communist is one who UNDERSTANDS Marx and Engels."
~Ronald "Ray-gun" Reagan
As to the earlier reference to "Render unto Caesar," i think Christianity has gotten the teaching about that entirely wrong.
The conversation that started it was when His enemies were attempting to get Him in a "damned if you do, damned if you don't" trap, by asking Him, "Is it lawful to pay taxes to Caesar, or not?"
He replied, "Show Me a denarius."
Someone did, and He asked "Whose likeness and inscription are on this coin?
They answered, "Caesar's."
He then replied "THEREFORE, render unto Caesar what is Caesar's, and render unto God what is God's."
To me, the "therefore" is an obvious reference to His previous words, and indicated both "likenesses" and "inscriptions," NOT the coin itself.
Far too many ascribe far too much to Caesar, and far too little to God; the metal of which the coin was formed is God's, for He created it; the likeness and inscription were Caesar's, and he's welcome to them...for they are ephemeral, lacking substance and reality, images only, fleeting pretensions to earthly power which ends with death.
There's a lesson in there somewhere, but maybe different for every reflective reader, ergo i doubt i can provide any further illumination.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 4, 2018 - 6:19am
 Jesus presented the framework for an interpersonal relationship with all people that was built on humility, honesty, tolerance, justice, self respect and morality. 
And that's where I see parallels. To me, socialism (note the term "social" in it) includes these attributes largely. I don't know where Marx justified violence in his theories, but if he did, I can understand it. We see that it's not possible to stop the neocons in a peaceful way. Votes and manifestations are no way to oust them from power.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 4, 2018 - 6:21am
I'm a big believer in a Guaranteed Basic Income (GBI). It's one the few ideologies I have adhered to since high school.
Me too. The argument that nobody works anymore when this'd be realized doesn't stand when asking the population what they would do if it would exist - work or not. The large majority would keep working. Whereas the definition or "work" should be thought over.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 4, 2018 - 6:23am
I don't talk about leaders. Whether you take Putin, Trump, Erdogan or Xi or any other leader - they all don't care about -isms but about keeping power and filling their pockets.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 4, 2018 - 6:27am
many still associate communism/socialism with Totalitarianism
While communism can take a form of totaliarianism (socialism unlikely), neoliberalism does too. The only difference it that neoliberalism works with way more hidden control, as there are free will and speech (through a censored press and media) and free movement (surveilled by digital systems)....just wait.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 4, 2018 - 6:31am
I say plain and simple: I do support the general view of socialism as being a system that produces as much fairness to everybody possible. Whether Marx or Engels approved on that isn't that important. When they were alive, the world was different.
These are universal values that should be respected. That's why I also approve certain teachings of Jesus.
Life is not very complicated, really.....:-)
Koshersalaami Added Dec 4, 2018 - 8:32am
When it comes to Marx there’s a reason I called him a utopian. He gets compassion right but not fairness and definitely not incentives. He’s right that all of us having what we need would be a good thing, but how do you get people to buy into “from each according to his ability” if they see people around them not doing that? 
I also like GBI because automation will reach the point where we won’t have enough jobs for the mouths we have to feed and starvation is not a morally viable alternative. GBI also leaves incentives in place to get further, accomplish more. GBI also penalizes the children of lazy or cynical people less. 
By the way, Marx did not predict authoritarianism. Marx is not Lenin, Stalin, or Mao. What Marx said was that exploitation of workers and alienation of workers from what they produced would eventually lead to workers getting sick of this, overthrowing ownership, taking over businesses collectively, and doing so internationally because borders really had nothing to do with workers and were useless to workers. 
As far as I can see, he got part of the equation wrong, though it was a brilliant mistake. The mistake resulted from being too early in the curve to see how forces actually worked. He was right about workers rebelling against exploitation. He was wrong about wanting to take over businesses - what workers turned out to want was jobs that didn’t exploit them, so they unionized, which drove the Marxists nuts. 
He caught alienation, which was great, but he was too early in industrialization to see how it would work. It didn’t make workers rebellious, it made them apathetic. The economic consequence of apathy is loss of productivity, which is not a worker issue at all, it’s an owner issue, so owners had the incentive to combat alienation. The least alienated people in the private workplace were involved owners, particularly founders, I don’t mean stockholders. Picture Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, or whoever owns the small businesses you go into. Who cares when the business opens, how clean the place is, how the customer is treated? The people with the incentive to care: owners. So what did they do?
They gave workers more control over and/or ownership of the workplace. Worker councils in Japan. Entrepreneurial units inside corporations and profit sharing in the US and eventually we saw the ultimate expression of this: the employee-owned company. Workers and owners merging, Marxian prediction in action, right under our noses. In the seventies we were moving pretty quickly in that direction, which would have made us more efficient and with a stronger middle class. A combination of skyrocketing energy prices and the Japanese economic invasion threw our economy off, the Reagan Republicans managed to blame it all on unions, and the solution became exporting jobs instead of worrying about American productivity. Clinton was too centrist to take us the other direction in any significant way and so was Obama, and by that time automation had become a bigger factor such that fixing our relationship with labor would still help a great deal but not to the enormous extent it would have previously. We’d still benefit by this, but now we have to look at GBI in addition. 
Stephen Hunter Added Dec 4, 2018 - 8:57am
Stone, did Cuba not start out as a Socialist movement, and then Castro somehow did away with the free elections and speech part? 
Now I am not dumping on Cuba, as I have vacationed there many many times, and love the Cuban people. Compared to other Latin American countries, at least the people get enough to eat and have free Healthcare.
George N Romey Added Dec 4, 2018 - 9:18am
GBI as a handout will be a disaster.  How do we know this?  We have welfare, essentially a GBI and its a total mess.  Giving people a meager stipend to somehow exists on leads to exactly what we see now in inner cities.  Crime, substance abuse, lack of human dignity, children out of wedlock, despair, etc.  Only this would be a much grander scale.
Instead, we need to restructure the work week (we did it in 1933) so people can work less but still earn a decent wage.  With financial security in place then yes people can do all the wonderful things we think GBI would do.   Why?  Because their financial security is in place.  They feel no need to commit crimes.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 4, 2018 - 9:36am
Stone, did Cuba not start out as a Socialist movement, and then Castro somehow did away with the free elections and speech part?
Fist of all free speech does no exist anywhere (anymore?). What we had before in regard of free speech starts to get shut down by censorship aka. PC. What does not correspond to the POV of the big 6 aka. NWO media organizations gets quietened, as so many objective historians and journalists got fired by the public TV stations for having "extremist" views and are forced to go into the net.
Free elections ? There the big 6 come in again, supported by economy-employed politicians and parties/lobbies which make sure the population elects people who only mean "best for them".....
I don't know if Castro had first a real open and socialist society in mind, I guess he had in the beginning but then got infected by the power virus, as most of the leaders are after a certain time.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 4, 2018 - 9:38am
We haven't tried GBI, so we can't say what will happen. But we made so many errors so far, another possible one doesn't hurt too much :-)
Stephen Hunter Added Dec 4, 2018 - 9:47am
Stone, cannot disagree with your thoughts on free speech and elections. The Castro thing is interesting as from what I have read (like The Motorcycle Diaries- about the early days of Che and his exploits to socialize Latin America) it really did start out as pure socialism. However the Corporate forces conspired to cripple the sugar industry in Cuba, thus putting the new government in a very tough place. 
goldminor Added Dec 4, 2018 - 9:52am
Transpose communist for government dictatorship such as China, Russia, etc, and that is what we should be concerned with as Leroy mentions above. The name doesn't matter so much. The intent behind the system does mean everything. Which is why Americans should be very concerned with the direction of the New Democrats.
Koshersalaami Added Dec 4, 2018 - 10:02am
If there remain enough jobs - entailing actual livings, not working two jobs and living out of a car - to go around, GBI will be unnecessary, and if shortening the work week would spread jobs around enough with benefits, which I doubt companies could afford as things stand now, then fine. I view GBI as the most logical solution at the moment but I don’t really care what the solution looks like, I just care that there be a real one. I will also say that starvation scares me more than bad bureaucracy or even waste. Maybe I differ with a lot of people here, but better dependent than dead. 
George N Romey Added Dec 4, 2018 - 11:02am
Kosh in the 1930s when FDR undertook wage and hour laws the standard work week had been about 60 hours a week, often six days a week.  The assembly line was causing unemployment more than what has been thought, a stock market crash, although that had an impact.
Labor unions were rallying FDR for a 30-32 hour work week. On the other hand companies were telling FDR that anything under 44 hours and 1.5 for "overtime" would be their deathbed.  FDR opted closer to what business wanted at 40 hours but built in overtime (years later comp time was added as an option).  Business adjusted and adapted.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 4, 2018 - 3:13pm
I repeat to that later. 
But I had THE day today. A friend gave me for free a Lado custom bass (a 1981 model handcrafted) with the words:
"I found that on the road and thought since you play guitar you might be able to use that"
Ai swallowed, cleaned that original Canadian made piece of art and decided to learn bass now :-)))))
Stone-Eater Added Dec 4, 2018 - 3:18pm
Transpose communist for government dictatorship such as China, Russia, etc, and that is what we should be concerned with as Leroy mentions above.
Wrong again. This has nothing to do with communist. The neoliberal NWO guys use that communist argument to delete democracy because they know each time they use the slogan "communist" to get something through with people that it will catch on ! People vote AGAINST their interest ! Seen in Europe.
Simple as that.
Stone-Eater Added Dec 4, 2018 - 3:21pm
but when you are trying to convince people you don’t know to open their wallets and dish out the dough
Which people ? The ones who lose their jobs due to outsourcing labor and enforcing digitalisation on a population which doesn't even have a chance to get to a level they can understand and INFLUENCE stopping the loss of their jobs  ? LOL
Jeff Michka Added Dec 4, 2018 - 5:12pm
Mogg the Turd wants to talk guitars and music.  Normally, I'll talk music with anyone, but won't with Mogg the dogfish.  Mogg wants to work with his new buddy Ryan to get all liberals, as they decide to define it, off WB, since tHey can't influence Autumn to ban people they don't like, so Mogg the Dogfish can talk music with Lyin Ryan.  Ryan just loves music, Mogg the dogfish, just ask him, he'll go on about it for reams...  LOL
Stone-Eater Added Dec 4, 2018 - 7:10pm
That's the same argument as Swiss people use. WE PAY TAXES ! Ok. So what's against paying taxes to a government that assures that you have good roads for everybody, a public ransport that runs on time and have water and power 24/7 ? And have schools that teach your kids how to prepare life and not concentrate on school prayers and useless theoretical blathers ?
Sure you can privatize everything. Bezos and Gates and Sugarmountain ((Zuckerberg in English) define education in the future and Twitter aka. Donnie short-message-president defines argument procedure....
no thanks. 
We don't need that shit in Europe anymore. We still have a rest of culture available. Sorry to be so blunt. 
ChetDude Added Dec 4, 2018 - 10:12pm
As an actual Anarcho-Syndicalist/Anarchist/Communist/Socialist (once Homo Sapiens(sic) evolves far enough - if we do)...I'm always incredibly amused at the fear and horror those words evoke among people who don't even know that they really mean.
For instance, this is MY working definition of Socialism in today's context:
Socialism is Worker and Community (THE PEOPLE'S) OWNERSHIP of the means of production coupled with democratic processes for decision making that allows the people to achieve consensus about where, when and what to produce, how much and how to do it along with how to fairly and equally distribute what's produced.
In order to work for society in a future that will increasingly be hampered by fossil-fueled, capitalist AGW/Climate Change, a primary goal of a Socialist society must be Sustainability according to the following definition:

1. The integration of human social and economic lives into the environment in ways that tend to enhance or maintain rather than degrade or destroy the environment;

2. A moral imperative to pass on our natural inheritance, not necessarily unchanged, but undiminished in its ability to meet the needs of future generations;

3. Entails determining and staying within the balance point among population, consumption and waste assimilation so that bioregions, watersheds and ecosystems can maintain their ability to recharge, replenish and regenerate.
What the heck is wrong with that?
And of course the "internet generic" definition of Communism is a fairly decent one:
'In political and social sciences, Communism is the philosophical, social, political, and economic ideology and movement whose ultimate goal is the establishment of the communist society, which is a socioeconomic order structured upon the common ownership of the means of production and the absence of social classes, money and the state.'
That doesn't sound too bad either...
Especially if we compare it to current U.S. style vulture capitalism...
Stone-Eater Added Dec 5, 2018 - 5:38am
That doesn't sound too bad either...
That's what I mean :-)
FacePalm Added Dec 5, 2018 - 6:17am
i'll tell ya what's wrong with that; it doesn't work and has NEVER worked, and never WILL.
If you disagree, please point out the civilization where it HAS worked.  Take your time...
"Common" ownership of ANYthing guarantees that the place'll be trashed in short order; if everybody owns everything, no one owns anything.  It's nonsense.  Unworkable.
A socialist/communistic experiment was tried in one of the colonies planted in America, long ago; except for the governor and his wife - who, in exchange for arbitrating disputes and punishing crimes, got to skim off the top - everyone else was to work together to cut down trees, build homes, barns, fences/barriers, clear the land, plant crops, etc., then all share equally in what was produced. 
Sounds great, right?
Didn't account for the slackers.  The slackers reasoned, "Why work hard?  i'm gonna get an equal share, anyway!"
The diligent saw the slackers not working, and reasoned "Why should I work hard to support the slackers who ain't workin'?"  So they slacked off, too.
The first winter, over 90%
The only "equality" socialism brings is equality in misery - except for the overseer class and the military/secret police who protect them.
Promoters of socialism are enemies of humanity, based on the histories of far too many totalitarian socialist nightmares.  If YOU continue to promote it based on some fantasy ideal in your head, you'll be a lovely useful idiot for the NWO/OWG, who intend to reduce the earth's population to no more than 500mil and keep it there.  Welcome to Madame guillotine as the general reward for imbecility(or a "New!"  "Modern!"  "Improved" version).
Ward Tipton Added Dec 6, 2018 - 2:16am
Anyone who equates anarchy with communism has already proven an inherent lack of historical knowledge and very likely status as what Stalin and Lenin deemed to be "useful idiots". 
The pseudo-anarchists today, rallying under the communist banner, are antithetical to the historical roots of communism ... the first of the Revolution(S ... PLURAL) saw the Bolsheviks killing off the Anarchists because the anarchists refuse to bow to the legal fiction of the State. 
An-Archy comes from the (ancient) Greek meaning No Leaders or more accurately, no ruling class with special rights or considerations. 
The problem with communism is not in the system of design so much, as it is in the imperfect nature of humanity ... those who seek power will use whatever power they can gain ... to attain more power and control, not to help their fellow man. 
Jim Stoner Added Dec 6, 2018 - 3:00am
Some great comments here from George Romey.  To repeat the points I found most salient: 
State Communism is dead.  What's left is not Communism, if ever it was. 
A critical issue our society needs to address is restructure of the work week, such that people working less hours can get by. 
Now, a couple things I want to say: 
Addressing the health insurance need for part-time workers is a large piece of the solution.  I suggest that Federal subsidies for employers who include them in their Group programs would make sense. If these are done right, they could obviate the need for GBI and give more people productive work.. 
I just did a search, and Mogg said "trot", but no one has said "Trotsky".  Not even ChetDude.  So,  
If only Trotsky....
Thanks.  I needed that. 
Koshersalaami Added Dec 6, 2018 - 8:07am
Yes, we’ve always had a wealthy class. The difference now is that social mobility is way down. We have already been redistributing wealth, but unfortunately upward. “..on the whole you have to earn for yourself in America..” Depends what you mean by “on the whole.” If you are referring to the population, mainly, but if you’re referring to the whole pool of American money, no. Inheritance is changing that. I don’t favor confiscatory rates but I think we’re too low and the whole “death tax” concept where people want to eliminate inheritance taxes altogether goes counter to both earning for oneself and social mobility. 
I’ll give you an example of what we’re talking about not taxing. If we were to do something utterly draconian and put in place an effective 99% inheritance tax on, I don’t know, billionaires, let’s look at what would happen to the Koch brothers. If they were to divide their estates evenly between their wives and children and were to predecease their families, the least any descendant of either of them would inherit is $150 million. That’s based on their collectively inheriting 1%. Not individually, collectively. 
We are in essence talking about turning the Eric Trumps of the world (of the country) into our new de facto royalty. The United States cannot afford that politically or financially, not when the poorest 40% of our population collectively has 3/10 of one percent of our wealth. 
If we don’t do something sensible about redistribution, we’ll end up being forced to doing something not sensible about redistribution. 
Koshersalaami Added Dec 6, 2018 - 8:09am
Why do you think younger Americans are so much more willing to look at socialism than we were?
Ward Tipton Added Dec 6, 2018 - 11:00am
"I’ll give you an example of what we’re talking about not taxing. If we were to do something utterly draconian and put in place an effective 99% inheritance tax on, I don’t know, billionaires, let’s look at what would happen to the Koch brothers."
They would pre-tax investments into a Flexible Premium Variable Universal Life Insurance policy, get a tax free income the rest of their lives and pass their inheritance on to their children in the form of life insurance like many already do now. 
Ward Tipton Added Dec 6, 2018 - 11:01am
Meanwhile, the American farmers (Not the Corporate Welfare queens like Caterpillar and John Deere who make millions not growing crops ... or did last time I had access to that information) but the actual farmers, would lose their familial livelihoods and lands. The corporate and establishment elite would lose fook all.
FacePalm Added Dec 6, 2018 - 3:03pm
Why do you think younger Americans are so much more willing to look at socialism than we were?  
Generally speaking, i surmise this is so because
a) they've been effectively brainwashed by leftist professors at the colleges/universities they attended, and
b) they're idiots who didn't investigate every socialist government ever known to have existed on the planet, ergo remain blissfully ignorant that the programming foisted upon them was lies intended to fool them.
These factors make them prime and primed candidates for the "useful idiot" role until the real socialists take over, at which point the mass murders will begin, just like they always do...oh, and the gulags/concentration camps/slave labor plants, like Apple is currently running in China, with lovely "suicide nets" to prevent their slaves from taking an easy out.
Yes, life in the socialist worker's paradise is wonderful - as long as you keep your eyes and mouth shut.
ChetDude Added Dec 6, 2018 - 5:06pm
It's fun to watch right-wingers and capitalist apologists twist in the wind posting drivel that proves that their "minds" are stuck in the McCarthy-ite, Red Menace days of the early 50s. 
Thankfully, they're a vanishing breed, like the DoDo Bird.
No thinking person need pays any attention to the perverse notions and revisionist "history" from their seriously limited, myopic, propaganda tainted "frame of reference" that capitalists pretend define Socialism or Communism. 
They aren't qualified to comment. Therefore, I favored the group by posting the ACTUAL definitions of those future socioeconomic systems.
Enjoy their amusing gyrations while we can...
ChetDude Added Dec 6, 2018 - 11:51pm
"They do not consider the failure of other socialist experiments final.
Which experiments?  I hope you're not pushing the capitalist party line that the USSR was and China is Socialist according to MY ACTUAL DEFINITION are you?  Or that the serious attempt by the Cubans to achieve it wasn't significantly hampered by USAmerica's invasion, illegal Blockade and secondary boycott, hmmm?
As far as the inheritance tax: Right now it only applies to the largest 0.2% (one out of every FIVE HUNDRED) estates in the U.S.  Those leaving $1 million (or up to TEN MILLION) to their heirs are untouched. 
As far as "taxes always go up" tell that to the billionaires and millionaires who just got a $4.5 Trillion tax cut!!!  (and are using it for stock buy-backs to pump up their Ponzi-Scheme on Wall Street and shipping it overseas to their accounts in the Cayman Islands).
ChetDude Added Dec 7, 2018 - 6:50pm
Gee, Mogg, talk about spewing!  I didn't attack you personally, I rebutted your assertions with facts.  So why do right-wingers like Thomas and you find it necessary to personally attack us, hmmm?
As far as the "Estate Tax" goes, I'm afraid I gave you the wrong figures as mine were based on the old law. 
Thanks to the multi-trillion dollar give-away to billionaires and millionaires the repukes just passed and the Orange Turd just signed, the size of the estate that's exempt from inheritance tax went UP drastically.
"In 2018, the exemption doubled to $11.18 million per taxpayer, as a result, only approximately 2,000 people (or 0.0006% of the population) in the US are currently liable for estate tax."
Are you "worth" more than $11,180,000.00 ????
I'm not so my kids GET IT ALL!
Koshersalaami Added Dec 7, 2018 - 8:03pm
Brainwashed? It doesn’t take brainwashing. What it takes is seeing the failures of the current system without having lived through the failures of alternatives. 
Those young people will reach majority and when they do, having allowed the current system to get so radically unequal will not look smart because the pendulum will swing too far the other way when they control it. The failures they see are real, not propaganda. 
Koshersalaami Added Dec 7, 2018 - 10:01pm
It’s not going to escape too many people that while the American economy has grown, real income among the Middle Class hasn’t grown since Nixon. Why is that rising tide ignoring most boats? Who is the rising tide for? 
Ward Tipton Added Dec 8, 2018 - 4:39am
"Should we tax a non working spouse on the unearned value of housing, food. clothing, transportation, entertainment, medical care received ?"
It is legally referred to as an "Imputed Tax" and yes, it is already done, though still arbitrary at this time ... not yet voluntarily mandatory like the federal income tax. 
John Minehan Added Dec 8, 2018 - 12:18pm
Big Jim McClain . . . wasn't the bad guy played by . . . the same guy who played Alfred on the 1966-'68 Batman TV Show?
ChetDude Added Dec 8, 2018 - 3:51pm
Mogg. It was Thomas who got personal.  My apologies...
The reason for a tax on YUGE estates was an obviously failed attempt begun in the early 20th Century to curb the massive accumulation of oversized, inherited wealth like that of Rockefeller and the other Robber Barons in the late 1800s.  As were the Sherman Anti-Trust Act and other legislation that tried to "level the playing field" and control the natural regressive progress of any capitalist system.
Trump and his republicans fiends in Congress essentially repealed it this year.
Alas, the Plutocrats began fighting back with a vengeance in the early 70s and now we're suffering under a new Gilded Age that makes the late 1800s look egalitarian.  3 people now own more wealth than the poorest 170,000,000 USAmericans.
In the future, maybe humans will gain the intelligence/evolve enough to decouple "job" (wage slavery) from the provision of basic human needs...unless AGW takes us out...

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