I was reminded recently by a troll who got lost and stumbled across this humble blog the we conservative/libertarians are careless in the way we throw around the terms “socialism” or “socialist”. The troll reminded me that “socialism” means state ownership of the means of production and in America the State does not own the means of production. Technically the troll is right. We on the Right tend to use the labels “liberal’ or “progressive” or “socialist” interchangeably. But, we do it with good reason. Whatever label the Left prefers doesn’t matter much to us because we know that the policies they promote all eventually lead to socialism. And, in this day and age, it isn’t necessary for the State (the collective people) to actually own the means of production, in the Soviet sense, to have effective control of the means of production. ObamaCare is a perfect example.
So, to my way of thinking, it doesn’t mater label the Left prefers, they are socialist whether the like it or not. Socialism is alive and well in America as we conservative/libertarians know all too well. And, as I said in today’s title, socialism depends on there being plenty of sheeple. Sheeple, unfortunately, make up the majority of mankind. It is easier to conform to the collective and let the collective tell you what to think, what to believe, and how to behave than it is to be self-reliant individual. This morning I came across the best analysis of sheeple I’ve ever read at Zero Hedge. Please do check it out. Here is a small sample of what the author, Brandon Smith, had to say about sheeple:
A sheeple gathers his entire identity from the group. He acts the way he believes the group wants him to act. He thinks the way he believes the group wants him to think. All of his “ideas” are notions pre-approved by the mainstream. All of his arguments and talking points are positions he heard from the media, or academia, and he has never formed an original opinion in his life. Without the group telling him what to do, the average sheeple is lost and disoriented. When cast into a crisis situation requiring individual initiative, he panics or becomes apathetic, waiting for the system to come and save him rather than taking care of himself. Sheeple are so dependent on others for every aspect of their personality and their survival that when faced with disaster, they are the most likely people to curl up and die.
Sheeple are not only reliant on the collective for their identity and their survival; they also need a steady supplement of approval from others in order to function day to day. When a sheeple leaves his home, he is worried about how his appearance is perceived, how his attitude is perceived, how his lifestyle is perceived and how his opinions are perceived. Everything he does from the moment his day begins revolves around ensuring that the collective approves of him. Even his acts of “rebellion” are often merely approved forms of superficial “individualism” reliant on style rather than substance. This approval becomes a kind of emotional drug to which the sheeple is addicted. He will never make waves among the herd or stand out against any aspect of the herd worldview, because their approval sustains and cements his very existence. To take collective approval away from him would be like cutting off a heroin junky’s supplier. To be shunned by the group would destroy him psychologically.
My troll should be pleased that today I am going to report on the activities of a true “socialist” in America today; more specifically in that bastion of “liberalism”, Seattle,, Washington. Jazz Shaw, at Hot Air, tells us about a young woman in Seattle by the name of Kshama Sawant who does not hide behind labels. She is a socialist and she is proud of it.
Seattle voters have elected a socialist to city council for the first time in modern history.
Kshama Sawant’s lead continued to grow on Friday, prompting 16-year incumbent Richard Conlin to concede.
Even in this liberal city, Sawant’s win has surprised many here. Conlin was backed by the city’s political establishment. On election night, she trailed by four percentage points. She wasn’t a veteran politician, having only run in one previous campaign.
But in the days following election night, Sawant’s share of the votes outgrew Conlin’s.
“I don’t think socialism makes most people in Seattle afraid,” Conlin said Friday.
I went to Wikipedia to find out the background of Kshama Sawant.
Sawant was born to Vasundhara and H. T. Ramanujam in Pune, India in a middle class family of the Brahmin caste. Sawant’s mother is a retired principal and her father, a civil engineer, was killed by a drunk driver when she was 13. Sawant’s observations of poverty in her native country and her unhappiness with the Indian caste system helped shape her political views before her adoption of socialism. Sawant grew up in Mumbai where she later studied computer science and graduated with a B.Sc from the University of Mumbai in 1994. Sawant married her husband Vivek, an engineer at Microsoft, and moved to the United States. After moving to the United States Sawant decided to abandon the computer engineering field. She began to pursue study in economics due to what she described as her own “questions of economic inequality.” She entered the economics program atNorth Carolina State University where she earned a PhD. Her dissertation was titled Elderly Labor Supply in a Rural, Less Developed Economy. Sawant moved to Seattle in 2006 and, after hearing a speech by a Socialist Alternative organizer, became a socialist. She became a United States citizen in 2010. Sawant and her husband Vivek are separated.
Shaw’s linked source says that her Socialist Alternative platform resonated with the
sheeple people of Seattle.
… she pushed a platform that resonated with the city. She backed efforts to raise the minimum wage to $15; called for rent control in the city where rental prices keep climbing; and supports a tax on millionaires to help fund a public transit system and other services.
Seattle, as you are probably aware is the home of Boeing and Ed Morrissey of Flopping Aces tells us that althugh Seattle young socialist has yet to take her seat on the City Council, she has wasted no time in trying to stir up trouble with Boeing’s Machinist
On Monday night, she spoke to supporters of Boeing Machinists, six days after they rejected a contract guaranteeing jobs in Everett building the new 777X airliner for eight years, in exchange for new workers giving up their guaranteed company pensions.
If Boeing and the union can not come to terms, Boeing has warned that those Seattle jobs could go somewhere else. Ms. Sawant says:
That will be nothing short of economic terrorism because it’s going to devastate the state’s economy.
So, she has a suggestion for the Machinist Union folks:
The workers should take over the factories, and shut down Boeing’s profit-making machine.
She calls that “democratic ownership”. According to her reasoning:
The only response we can have if Boeing executives do not agree to keep the plant here is for the machinists to say the machines are here, the workers are here, we will do the job, we don’t need the executives. The executives don’t do the work, the machinists do,” she said.
And, according to this article, the
sheeple union members were cheering her on. Of course it didn’t occur to this “socialist” that there are laws against stealing private property. But, even if Boeing would give the plant to the sheeple Machinist Union, where does she think they would get the huge amounts of capital to buy the raw materials needed to build those planes, who is going to negotiate the financing and loans that would be needed, who is going to go around the world to sell their produce and write the contracts, and who is going to organize all those efforts? In short, it doesn’t occur to this socialist that the sheeple would need a management structure, who do indeed work. Maybe she thinks the sheeple union members can do everything. More likely, she, like the sheeple she wants to lead, do not think at all.
sheeple good folks of Seattle elected this “socialist”. I hope they will be happy. One thing is for sure. If Boeing does decide to move their plant to another state, the sheeple good folks of Seattle will not blame the socialist. They will blame those savage capitalist at Boeing.
Well, that’s what I’m thinking. What are your thoughts?