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News Link • Philosophy: Socialism

There Is No Such Thing As "Socialism"

•, by L. Neil Smith

In that society, it would be considered ill-mannered—and a moral confession in a milieu where, just as a single example, arranged, profitable, and politically advantageous marriages, are forced on innocent young women in a custom known as "gavage"—the process by which geese are force-fed to render their ruined livers a gourmet delicacy.

I suppose that the subtlety of the thing may have been lost, in a swirling sails-and-swordplay adventure full of space battles, bodice-ripping, passionate embraces, and mortal combat, featuring new and radical concepts for faster-than-light starships, "naval" gunnery, and personal weaponry. But the toxicity of euphemism is no less important today than it was when I wrote about it. On the contrary.

Take a look at the epigram this essay begins with. It was uttered (or written, I don't know which) by Vladimir Ilyich Ulyanov Lenin, one of the most-often quoted individuals in the history of the world, the real founder of the communist totalitarian state. (By comparison, Karl Marx spent all his time in his pajamas in his mother's basement.) If anybody was ever an expert on communism (versus socialism or anything else), ol' Vlad was it, and it's more than instructive that all of the synonyms in the thesaurus for "socialism" are exactly the same as those for "communism".

"Socialism" is nothing but another damned euphemism. It's a softer-sounding, more marketable way for leftists to say what they really want. The Madison Avenue catch-phrase "democratic socialism" was whipped up as even more palatable to Americans, by political science professor, authoritarian hack, and closeted communist Michael Harrington, apparently a good buddy of Tom Hayden, and makes every bit as much sense as "democratic Nazism".

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