“Socialism,” the idea that a man and his labor belong to the state, which should absolutely control the production and distribution of goods as diverse as food and jewelry, is quite an old concept. Aristotle discusses socialism, disapprovingly, in his “Politics,” and in other works.
In ages where people paid more attention to history for guidance, socialism was a dead issue. After all, socialist schemes had a record of catastrophic failure as far back as readable written history runs.
Unfortunately, a failed New York Times stringer, a person who “reports” events on a pay per word basis, wrote a book. Karl Marx was not the first 19th century author to suggest a revival of socialism, but Das Kapital was the most influential.
In Europe, Das Kapital and nationalist fervor impelled a young man to leave his lunch half eaten in order to murder an Archbishop.
Across the Atlantic, Das Kapital found fertile ground. Francis Galton took it and Darwin’s theory and created “Eugenics,” the idea that sterilizing the “unfit” would lead to a superior breed of humanity. A Caucasian super race, fit for the stars.
Woodrow Wilson combined enthusiasm for socialism with Eugenics, and an unhealthy dose of Tom Dixon’s fervent bigotry to start the modern “Progressive” movement.
Wilson kept us out of the war raging in Europe just long enough to win reelection. As soon as he was inaugurated, Wilson took the United States to war. Of course, there were provocations, but the evidence is clear. Wilson had planned for the US to enter a European war for more than a year.
So we went to Europe, to “remake the world.” And we insisted on terms and conditions for peace that destroyed most Central European economies, in the expectation that they would be remade in a Marxian image. An expectation that would soon be realized.
So the United States went into the 1920’s full of “Progressive Cheer.” Something just as potent and just as destructive as “bathtub gin.”
Woodrow Wilson’s vision of “Progressiveism” set the stage for and pulled the trigger that ignited World War One.
That same vision of “Progressivism” resulted in the Socialist/Facist regimes in Italy and Germany. Regimes that heavily recruited in the middle east, leading to the formation of the Baath Party, whose Fascist tenets transcend national borders in that region.
The sympathy American Progressives have for Communist Progressivism greatly aided Lenin and Stalin in their oppression of the Russian, Ukranian, Polish and other peoples during the “Progressive” assimilation of the USSR.
So “Progressivism” led directly to the Second World War.
After that war was won, Progressivism allowed dozens of new governments built in the USSR’s image to spring up. North Korea was one, and American “Progressivism” led directly to the “Korean Police Action.”
North Viet Nam was another, and “Progressive” aggression led directly to the Viet Nam war.
Less noticed was the great number of African states such as Uganda and Zimbabwe that fell into the “Progressive” trap. Uganda’s Idi Amin reportedly murdered a million Ugandans in various campaigns, while Zimbabwe’s Robert Mugabe’s body count is still accumulating.
Western “Progressives” took a number of measures that led to the overthrow of the Shah of Iran, destabilizing the area (the Shah’s regime was not “nice” by any standard, but its successor is many times worse) leading to the Iraq-Iran wars where many thousands were killed by Iraqi “Weapons of Mass Destruction.” Iran was forced to sue for peace, while Iraq’s WMD programs were increased.
The leader of Iraq’s “Progressive” Baath Party, Saddam Hussein, invaded Kuwait, leading to the first Gulf war.
After that war, one Osama Bin Laden, impelled by allegiance to the Baathist’s “Progressive” principles, the political vacuum, and religious motives, began to create a base, Al Qaeda in Arabic, for guerrilla action against the West in general and the United States in particular.
In 2001, Bin Laden’s Al Qaeda struck at New York’s World Trade center, killing some 3,000 American non-combatants, an act that received high praise from Bin Laden’s fellow Baathist “Progressives.”
Bin Laden had been sheltered by Afghanistan’s ruling Taliban, an organization that combined both Baathist principles with strict theocracy. In hot pursuit of those who attacked the World Trade Center, the West invaded Afghanistan in an attempt to free the country from the oppression of Progressivism.
Western “Progressives” allowed Hussein to remain in power after the first Gulf War, leading directly to the Second Gulf War as Hussein repeatedly ignored UN and Western warnings to stop building Weapons of Mass Destruction. So “Progressivism” led directly to the Second Gulf War.
And “Progressivism” will lead to the next war, and the next, and the one after that. Because that is the nature of the beast.
2600 years ago Simon the Shoemaker related the evils of socialism, in particular the then well known fact that socialist regimes become a oligarchy under an absolute ruler.
While the miseries imposed by Archippus, Thersippus, and Phorbas are long forgotten by most, the death, misery, and destruction imposed by 20th century Progressives such as Lenin, Trotsky, Mussolini, Hitler, Mao, the Kims, Pol Pot, Idi Amin Dada, Saddam Hussein, and an entire army of Progressive evil doers should be familiar to everyone.
And all of that can be traced back to just two men. Karl Marx, a failed reporter who wrote a book to feed his family; and Woodrow Wilson, an academic turned politician who had faith that Marx was correct.