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IN FOCUS – Collectivism Empowers Tyrants

Person surrounded by a group of people

There are so many dangerous ideas circulating in our society today, one searches for a root problem that has spawned all of these other bad ideas.  Perhaps if we could just identify and expose that root problem, other secondary problems would improve.  Let’s give it a try.

Although there are other candidates, perhaps the most dangerous “ism” is Collectivism — the notion that undergirds Communism, Socialism, Fascism, Statism, and other Dictatorial and Totalitarian forms of government.  Increasingly, Collectivism is used as a justification for the type of Crony Corporate Capitalism that currently dominates our nation.

Our rulers want us to yield to their decrees, and one technique they use is to persuade us that we should be willing to sacrifice freedom and personal autonomy for the greater good.  Not so curiously, the greater good usually benefits our rulers and their billionaire buddies.  Collectivism provides our rulers with a justification for imposing all manner of evil policies.

We are not allowed to have gas stoves.  It is illegal to sell an incandescent light bulb.  We are required to buy only electric lawn mowers and chain saws in some states.  Soon we will not be allowed to buy cars with internal combustion engines.  One day, we may only be allowed to buy meat grown in a lab or food made from insects.  Which of these policies did we, the People, vote for?  As individuals, we may prefer to have choices that are being foreclosed, but that freedom is being taken from us — for the collective good, of course.  We are told not to resist, because our rulers in Washington, D.C. or the 50 state capitals are acting in our best, long-term interest: going green, fighting climate change, or cleaning up our air and water.  We have learned that plans to subsidize solar energy actually were designed to subsidize businesses owned by friends of the ruling class.  We lose our freedom, and they make buckets of money.

Like our present government, Robin Hood would “steal from the rich to give to the poor.”  While that sounds like charity, it is not.  Pretending to be a beneficent Robin Hood, Collectivism provides cover for the ruling class of a society to take and distribute its resources to its friends.  Through taxation and inflation, Collectivism violates the Commandment “Thou shalt not steal.”  Exodus 20:15.  It encourages sloth by those receiving welfare, violating “if any would not work, neither should he eat.”  2 Thessalonians 3:10.  It robs resources from people who would want to engage in acts of real, voluntary charity, motivated by love — the kind of assistance that has lasting benefit to the recipients.

One of its most famous descriptions of Collectivism is the doctrine of utilitarianism attributed to John Stuart Mill, that our national objective should be to achieve “the greater good for the greatest number of people.”  Under this doctrine, the will of the individual must be subordinated to the need of the collective.  We are being conditioned to sacrifice, for the good of the State.

Of course, that raises the question — what is the “greater good.”  During the COVID-19 debacle, the experts told us that the greater good was that all should take the shot.  Never before had any “vaccine” been given to pregnant women, but now a vaccine that had never been properly tested on anyone was being given to those pregnant women — for the greater good.  One psychological study extolled those who valued the collective good, even if it caused them to become sick:  “Collectivism has been identified as a protective factor against COVID-19 – perhaps due to increased conformity with social norms regarding prevention behaviors.”

The great and powerful Dr. Anthony Fauci closed down hundreds of thousands of small businesses for months, many to never open again, to “stop the spread.”  Surely Fauci was making decisions in the collective good, right?  Well, on July 21, 2021, Fauci was named the 2021 Humanist of the Year by the American Humanist Association which describes itself as: “Advocating progressive values and equality for humanists, atheists, and freethinkers.”  This is among the most leftist and anti-God groups in the nation.  It is not neutral on matters of religion — look at its website and see how it shakes its fist at God — which tells you something about the man it honored and how he makes decisions.  Fauci admitted: “I look upon myself as a humanist” and “I’m less enamored of organized religion than I am with the principles of humanity and goodness to mankind and doing the best that you can.”  Who would trust such a man to know the common good even if it smacked him in the face.

Subsuming the unique individual, and his or her rights, to the great Collective will is the central theme of Marxism.  Karl Marx asserted the doctrine:  “From each according to his ability, to each according to his need.”  Charity to meet the needs of others is a virtue, but to be charity it must be voluntary.  Marx had little use for anything voluntary.  He was advocating not for peace, but class conflict.  He wanted to tear down capitalism through revolution and thereby create a utopian society.  Grove City College Professor Paul Kengor, author of The Devil and Karl Marx, concluded: “there is the distinct sense of something demonic in Marx’s personal life. Those who knew him most intimately consistently described him in demonic terms:  His son wrote to him as “my dear devil,” his father suggested that he was “governed by a demon,” and Engels referred to him as a “monster of ten thousand devils.”  Considering the death and destruction his ideas caused, this theory is not hard to believe.

Certainly not all calls to assist others are wrong.  A half century ago, in his Inaugural address, President John Kennedy challenged Americans:  “ask not what your country can do for you — ask what you can do for your country.”  That statement had overtones of collectivism, but only two months later, by Executive Order, JFK established the Peace Corps, encouraging young people to volunteer (not be coerced), and therefore one can believe that JFK had benign motives.

One recent version of Collectivism came from a video from the World Economic Forum — a now deleted video – entitled “8 predictions for the world in 2030.”  The first slide in the video shows a smiling young man and promises:  “By 2030, You’ll own nothing.  And you’ll be happy.”  (If you want to verify this, just Google the quotation on the slide and see how many “fact checks” have been devoted to denying or explaining away this tactical mistake by the WEF.)  If you’ll own nothing, who is owning everything?  Chances are, it’s those running the World Economic Forum.

Collectivism, in practice, is brute force. “Collectivism is backed by compulsion, where one side wins and the other loses, rather than voluntary trade for mutual benefit.” The “common good,” writes John Allison, “has been the Trojan horse of every tyrant throughout history from Stalin to Chávez.”

Collectivism leads to censorship — in the public interest of course.  The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals found that to promote the COVID-19 shot, and for other “good reasons,” the federal government “suppress[ed] millions of protected free speech postings by American citizens.”  Missouri v. Biden, 83 F.4th 350, 392 (5th Cir. 2023).  Allowing individuals to spread misinformation and disinformation is certainly not in the public interest, our government believes, so they censor – in the common good.

Collectivism is not just the opposite of Individualism, it is the opposite of Liberty.  As Mark Steyn suggests: “[t]o rekindle the spark of liberty once it dies is very difficult.”  The time is now — Americans must recapture the truth of Holy Writ that we are all created, individually, by God.  This truth undergirds the Declaration of Independence, which holds that “all men,” individually, are “endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights.” Since these rights – rights not given us by government, and thus they cannot be taken from us by government — even if the Dr. Faucis of this world thinks it advances the common good.  Those entrusted with governmental power are not our rulers, but our servants, and when they exceed their powers, they must meet resistance, before it is forever too late.  

Within weeks of when President Biden came into office, memos were issued to department heads at Immigration and Customs Enforcement (“ICE”) and Customs and Border Protection (“CBP”) ordering they change their tune.  They were ordered to stop using terms like “illegal alien” and to begin using softer, gentler language designed to reflect a more “humane” view of immigration.  Here were some of the word changes that were designed to confer “dignity to those in our custody”:

Editor’s Note: To read the articles in this series, please click here.

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