Friday, February 07, 2014
Those Ignorant of History...Think Communism is Sweet
He lists several "huge misconceptions" we supposedly have about Communism and then fails to refute any of them, even though most are straw men arguments no sober thinker has ever made. I'll just take the one "nonsense" statement about political murders by Communists. Here is how Mr. Myerson titles it: Communism killed 110 million* people for resisting dispossession.
But no one thinks the murders on that scale were just of people resisting the transfer of ownership from individuals (them) to the collective masses. Those who know history say that during the 20th Century around 100,000,000 political murders were committed by Communists. It is a sad historical fact. I'll give evidentiary support below, But let's look how Mr. Myerson tries to justify his calling the figure a huge misconception and nonsense:
Greg Gutfeld, one of the hosts of Fox News’ “The Five” and a historical scholar of zero renown, recently advanced the position that “only the threat of death can prop up a left-wing dream, because no one in their right mind would volunteer for this crap. Hence, 110 million dead.” In declaring this, Gutfeld and his ilk insult the suffering of the millions of people who died under Stalin, Mao, and other 20th Century Communist dictators. Making up a big-sounding number of people and chalking their deaths up to some abstract “communism” is no way to enact a humanistic commitment to victims of human rights atrocities.Mr. Gutfield did say the words in quotes but that's not all he said, as he spoke for over 6 minutes--the video is at the link Myerson, to his credit, provides. Greg Gutfeld did not limit the numbers killed to only those murdered in the act of defying collectivisation, as Mr. Myerson implies, but he did speak out against the murderous totalitarians of Communists and there are many (see below). "All political power comes from the barrel of a gun." Who said that? Mr. Gutfeld? I wonder if Myerson knows. It's Chairman Mao. Is Mr. Gutfeld wrong to think the murders were a means of coercion to the ideals of Marx and Lenin? Of course not. The Communists weren't murdering millions for fun.
But let's look at the greater nonsense in Myerson's paragraph above. First, we're not "making up" a big number, it is a big number--we on the right are just reporting a historical fact by giving the huge number. Attributing the political murders to Communism is another historical fact. However, Mr. Myerson alleges that repeating actual history does not "enact a humanistic commitment to victims of human rights atrocities." Sifting through this pablum it seems that Jesse the Genius is admitting there were murdered victims. So much for showing the statement to be nonsense and a huge misconception. It would seem to me to be more anti-humanistic to deny the number of victims so clearly documented, especially since the huge numbers are what makes Communism so worthy of opposition. To mimic Uncle Joe, a single political murder is a tragedy, a million murders is statistical proof that Communism is evil and wrong. Moving on. Jesse the Genius then writes:
For one thing, a large number of the people killed under Soviet communism weren’t the kulaks everyone pretends to care about but themselves communists. Stalin, in his paranoid cruelty, not only had Russian revolutionary leaders assassinated and executed, but indeed exterminated entire communist parties. These people weren’t resisting having their property collectivized; they were committed to collectivizing property. It is also worth remembering that the Soviets had to fight a revolutionary war – against, among others, the US – which, as the American Revolution is enough to show, doesn’t mainly consist of group hugs. They also faced (and heroically defeated) the Nazis, who were not an ocean away, but right on their doorstep.So, to paraphrase, many of the humans murdered were not kulaks but, oh my God, other Communists. They're all still victims of political murder by Communists, including the kulaks. I'm not seeing refutation here. There is none there. And Stalin murdered many of these humans because of paranoid cruelty. Right. Is Jesse even trying to refute the vast number of political murders?
But then Mr. Myerson talks about the Russian Revolution and the Russian Civil War which followed. So, during those conflicts, people were or were not being killed by Communists? Again, not really refutation. And we who know history are not counting the war dead (tens of millions) and the millions of political murders of Soviets by other socialists, national socialists, during the Great Patriotic War. The tens of millions of political murders we're counting are on top of the millions of WWII dead. Yet again, a complete absence of refutation. Last paragraph.
So much for the USSR. The most horrifying episode in 20th Century official Communism was the Great Chinese Famine, its death toll difficult to identify, but surely in the tens of millions. Several factors evidently contributed to this atrocity, but central to it was Mao’s “Great Leap Forward,” a disastrous combination of applied pseudoscience, stat-juking, and political persecution designed to transform China into an industrial superpower in the blink of an eye. The experiment’s results were extremely grim, but to claim that the victims died because they, in their right minds, would not volunteer for “a left-wing dream” is ludicrous. Famine is not a uniquely “left-wing” problem.So much for the USSR? Is Myerson so delusional that he thinks he has caused a tiny instant of doubt that Lenin and Stalin murdered, for political reasons, nearly 30,000,000 humans during the first three dozen years of Russian Communism? But he quickly pivots to Chinese Communism, where he admits the "atrocity" Mao perpetrated that killed tens of millions of Chinese. Does he think this is refutation to the huge numbers of political murders by the ChiComs? I'd call it support. He seems to cling to the hope that human engineered famines are not murder, more like negligent homicide. Still just as dead though, huh Jesse? He ends with the triumphant banality that famine is not uniquely "left-wing." True, but human engineered famine is indeed uniquely Socialist, overwhelmingly the result of international socialism.
Let's look at the numbers, my synthesis, of political murders by just 6 Communist dictators in the 20th Century.
Lenin 2 Million
Stalin 34 Million
Kim Il Sung 2.5 Million (not counting casualties of his invasion of South Korea)
Mao Zedung 48.5 Million
Ho Chi Minh 900 Thousand (not counting casualties of his war against the French and South Viet Nam)
Pol Pot 2.2 Million
Total 89.2 Million (I think that more Soviets survived the political prisons of the Gulags than others think survived, which is why my number is not 110 Million).
Here are others numbers from other scholars studying the history of this vast evil:
Zbignew Brzezinski 60 Million
Stéphane Courtois et al.(Black Book) 85-100 Million
Milton Leitenberg 81 Million (just for USSR and Communist China)
Rudolph Rummler 110.286 Million plus 49.275 from Chinese famines and 5.833 Million from Soviet famines (he seems to ignore the horror of Kazakhstan; and he's not counting the casualties from later wars Communists started in Korea, Viet Nam and Afghanistan.
Rummler's numbers for Commie political murders is juxtaposed by his count of 2.028 Million political murders in the 20th Century in democracies. That's a ration of 55 to 1. The left says the right is scary--they are projecting.
Anyone who thinks Communism is a good thing is either an idiot or an evil person, or both.
UPDATE: The Other McCain weighs in on The Worst Idea in the World. What he said.
UPDATE 2: OK, I can't resist the false comparison between Communism and Capitalism. Jesse the Genius writes:
The 100 million deaths that are perhaps most important to focus on right now are the ones that international human rights organization DARA projected will die climate-borne deaths between 2012 and 2030. 100 million more will follow those, and they will not take 18 years to die. Famine like the human species has never known is in the offing because the free market does not price carbon and oil-extracting capitalist firms have, since the collapse of the USSR, become sovereigns of their own. The most virulent anti-communists have a very handy, if morally disgraceful, way of treating this mass extinction event: they deny that it’s happening.This is a stupid Tu Quoque fallacy that seeks to compare the 100 Million political murders by Communists to the deaths by famine the Capitalists might cause through
But if 100 Million are to die in the 18 year period between 2012 and 2030, then over 5.5 Million must die on average each year. We're a full 2 years into the predicted die off. How many people have died because of the change in temperature caused by additional atmospheric CO2 from burning fossil fuel? 11 Million? How about none? Even the alarmist true believers in the World Health Organization put their largely specious figure at 150,000/yr, a mere 5,405,555 short of the DARA projection. We on the right are treating the "mass extinction event" properly, because it's not happening, at least with the human animals on the planet, whose numbers continue to increase.