Tag: communist

The Art of Pursuing Knowledge

Ian Brzeski | United States

Imagine a society where people did not strive to obtain knowledge, where people did not try and better themselves and society as a whole due to laziness or negligence. There would be no intellectual debate or discussion amongst peoples; there would not even be the high level of society we live in today. From generation to generation, society has progressed and there is no question about it. Life expectancy has gone up tremendously, and the impoverished are nowhere near the level of terrible poverty that they once endured. All of this progress comes from our desire to learn, our desire to improve, and our desire to make our lives easier and better. Without these desires, nobody would care about anything and we would have never achieved this progress. Without this desire, who knows where we would be at in society today. Would we still be stuck in the Dark Ages? Maybe it would be worse; perhaps we would still be neanderthals who have yet to invent the wheel.

The ability to learn is the most underappreciated and undervalued skill that people possess. Choosing to acquire knowledge in a particular subject is bound to shape who we are as a person. The saying “knowledge is power” holds a tremendous amount of weight. Knowledge opens up worlds of opportunity. It liberates our minds from the thinking of the masses. It allows us to think critically, analyze ideas, and develop our own conclusions from said ideas.  From the eagerness to learn comes knowledge and from knowledge comes wisdom.

The Importance of Reading

The best way to obtain knowledge is through reading. Reading is simply a wonder. Regardless of the subject matter, you can always learn something from a good piece of literature. Fiction, non-fiction, politics, sports, or history, the subject does not matter. Harvest the knowledge that comes from all these readings. There are always going to be facts to learn, concepts to grasp, morals to uncover, and ideas to critique through reading.

Reading a book may motivate you, relax you, give you information to better yourself as a person, or even give you random bits of information that you find interesting. No matter what you are reading, it will always help you. Reading poorly written books or conceptually poor books also have some benefit because you would be able to distinguish and analyze the faults of these books. If none of the prior reasons convinced you to pick up a book and start reading, remember that reading is overall inherently fun. When picking up a book, you never really know what to expect. The stories you read or the facts and opinions portrayed could be just full of surprises. Reading could change your life.

You are What You Read

What you choose to read stem from your interests and beliefs. If you read books and articles about politics and more specifically libertarianism, you are interested in politics and are probably a libertarian. While this claim is a given and is true most of the time, your interests and beliefs also stem from the books you read as long as you go into the book with an open mind. Reading with an open mind will help shape your political ideology and who you are. It will increase your understanding of different positions and mold you into a person who you would want to be.

When reading books about politics or political theory, it is just as important to read opposing views as it is to read the views you agree with or the ones you are most comfortable with. The books we read shape our persona and develop our livelihood and our way of thinking. Think about everything you can learn from reading. Think about the different viewpoints and understanding and knowledge you will obtain from reading your opposition. You will undoubtedly learn a lot and be incomparably more educated than the person who only reads Rothbard or the person who only reads Marx.

Read Differing Opinions

If you only read Marx or Baudrillard, you are still ignorant. If you only read Rothbard or Hoppe, you are still ignorant. This goes for anybody who reads only one side of things. These people will have no understanding of their political counterparts. They will sound stupid, ignorant, and hateful, inevitably leading to an abrupt halt to any political discussion. Civil discourse will be virtually nonexistent.

This is why it is so important to read your opposition. If we want to continue progressing as a society, we must be able to develop an understanding of different views and opinions. People must be prepared to understand and listen to different opinions if we want to maintain any civil discourse. Allowing for civil discourse makes way for a more transparent and more efficient exchange of information and ideas. Civil discourse will undoubtedly lead to a quicker progression in society.

Reading differing opinions is better than reading books with opinions in which you agree with. It will challenge your way of thinking while giving you more of an understanding of different opinions, making you more compassionate and sympathetic to people who think differently from you. Your critical thinking skills and levels of analysis will certainly improve by challenging your opinions and allow you to form your way of thinking in a more articulate manner.

Read Rothbard, read Marx, read Zizek, read Nozick, read Chomsky, read Orwell, and read Konkin. Read from all the brilliant minds who were able to develop and create discussion in politics. Especially read from the people who you disagree with or are maybe disgusted with. It is essential to do this in order to be able to formulate and strengthen your position. Keep on reading for the knowledge and wisdom that you will inevitably gain.


71 Republic is the Third Voice in media. We pride ourselves on distinctively independent journalism and editorials. Every dollar you give helps us grow our mission of providing reliable coverage. Please consider donating to our Patreon, which you can find here. Thank you very much for your support!

Advertisements

Marx is Wrong About the Workers

By Mason Mohon | @mohonofficial

In my recent reading of Marx and Engels’s The Communist Manifesto, I was kind of surprised by the characterization made of the relationship between the employers and the workers. Marx calls the relationship exploitative multiple times throughout the work. The workers produce, and then the employer steals away the product of his or her labor. With this characterization, it is no wonder people are so against modern-day capitalist relationships. But this characterization is not the reality of the situation. It is based on loaded language and misrepresentations of the market process.

A particular passage caught my attention:

“In proportion to the bourgeoisie, i.e., capital, is developed, in the same proportion is the proletariat, the modern working class, developed–a class of laborers, who live so long as they find work, and who find work so long as their labor increases capital. The laborers, who must sell themselves piecemeal, are a commodity, like every other article of commerce, and are consequently exposed to all the vicissitudes of competition, to all the fluctuations in the market. ” (Marx par.34)

This paragraph has two core planks: the workers’ lives are dependent on capital, and the workers are owned. Marx says that the worker only lives if they can find work. One may take this as Marx saying that work is bad, but that is not what he is saying. He is saying that work is bad as long as its existence depends upon capital production. Work dependent on capital production is not a bad thing, though. An employer only will hire a worker if the hiring will bring the employer more wealth. This may seem terrible and selfish, but capital accumulation in private hands is a good thing.

Businesses will garner capital as long as they are serving consumers. The worker is part of this process. Capital accumulation for the employer means that they can go and enter into another entrepreneurial endeavor, thus serving more consumers. Thus, the relationship between the worker and the employer being one that produces capital is good for society. Entrepreneurs and capitalists make the world a better place by serving the wants of consumers when they accumulate capital. This is not a bad thing.

But then we move on to the second plank of this passage. Marx claims that the workers “are a commodity.” On the very next page, he goes on to call the workers “slaves of the bourgeoisie class.” This is nothing more than a rhetorical trick. Any reader will want to end slavery, so when Marx calls this situation slavery it forces the reader to believe certain things without proper logical backing. The situation for the working class is not as dire as Marx makes it seem.

The relationship between the worker and the business owner is voluntary in private enterprise. The worker chooses to work for the employer for a wage they agree upon (minimum wage laws set aside). This consensually agreed upon relationship is only slavery in the furthest reaches of intellectual fantization. Any other situation would be slavery. This is the only relationship that can be outside the definition of slavery. So if this is slavery, what is freedom?

Marx believes it is slavery because the employer steals from the laborer. The employer exploits the worker and takes away the value he produces. This is also an inaccurate depiction of the relationship. The worker does not create the products he or she is employed to create from scratch. The worker creates a product using the capital goods the employer has provided them with. Thus, the employer is not stealing anything. Rather, they are paying the worker to do something with the resources they already own.

There is an institution that does steal things it had no hand at all in producing, though. It is called the state. If I were to take nature-given resources and produce a product, and then sell said product, the state would take some of my profit. This is an exploitative relationship. This is the exploitation Marx should have set his sights on.

At the same time, the employer does not buy the worker. The employer rents the labor of the worker. Buying the worker would mean they never went home to their family and they would get a one-time payment to their previous owner, not a wage paid out directly to them. Clearly, this is not the case. Workers rent out their labor voluntarily, and they are still in control of themselves.

If the employer truly did own the worker, the worker could not leave. The worker would be permanently stuck in the present job. But workers can leave if they are unhappy with the working conditions or wages. Marx talks about competition as if it a terrible fire that workers must burn in, but workers are the ones that force businesses to compete.

Competition is what brings up working conditions, pushes down prices, and keeps quality high. It is a staple of the free market and may be one of the most beneficial parts. Marx’s criticism of the relationship of the workers to the employers is misguided, and the conclusions he draws are flat out wrong. Thus, they should be entirely rejected.


To support 71 Republic, please donate to our Patreon, which you can find here.

Libertarian Party LNC Secretary Denounces Socialist Entryism

By Mason Mohon@mohonofficial

On Sunday Libertarian Party LNC Secretary Caryn Ann Harlos made a post to her public Facebook page denouncing Socialist entryism into the party. It can be seen below:

Within the post, there is a screenshot of an email sent from Ms. Harlos to the LNC business email. The email is short yet to the point, explaining that just as the LNC has rejected radicals from the right, they should reject radicals from the left.

After the events of Charlottesville a year ago, many libertarians became concerned with a “libertarian to alt-right pipeline.” This spurred action by the LP to denounce fascism, white nationalism, and the far right hate groups that were seen in Charlottesville. They did not want these people in the party and made clear that they would not tolerate them.

A year later, Harlos has sent an email that indicates the same should be done to the far left. At the bottom of the email are the hashtags “#nofarleft #nofarright #yeslibertarian.” These hashtags harken back to David Nolan’s political compass that set libertarianism as distinctly separate from the left and the right, giving it its own corner.

NolanwithNolanChart1996

Harlos has made comments denouncing libertarians socialists in the party on her private Facebook, but those will not be shared here for the sake of preservation of privacy. When reached out to, she declined to comment on the matter.

What the results of the statements by the secretary will have yet to be discovered. It is unknown if this will lead to the party purging far-left advocates as it did with far-right individuals. Currently, the party has yet to do so, as the party’s socialist caucus stands strong.


To support 71 Republic, please donate to our Patreon, which you can find here.

Featured Image Source.

Iran vs The World

By Joshua D. Glawson | United States

From its inception in 550 B.C., the Persian Empire reigned with fervor and might. The Persians carved out their territory that would expand across major parts of Eurasia, keeping the Greeks at bay, as well as other nations in pursuit of their own place in history. Ever since the first establishment of the Persian Nation-State, they have had to fight off other nations and were influenced by them. The biggest change first occurred in 637 A.D. when Persia fell into the hands of the nomadic Arabs at the Battle of Kadisiya which is close to the Euphrates River. Once the Arabs took hold of the Persian Empire, they brought with them Islam and Arabic, which forever changed the Persian language and religion casting out most Zoroastrian practices. Zoroastrianism was not only the main Persian religion of choice, but it is often considered the first monotheistic religion of the world. After a long period of delegation, finding peace under the new regime and identity of the Persian Empire, in 1722 Afghan rebels had a degree of conflict with the Persian Empire, and they pursued the capturing of Isfahan. This seizing of a major city led the way for Russia and Turkey to also plunder their way through Persia, and by 1724 the Russians and Turks split the spoils among their militaries and elite.

By the 1800s to mid-1900s, the British and Americans had tight economic and personal relations with Persia. Although the British and Americans were both there to better petroleum and crude business in their favor, it was only the Brits that were seen as adversaries while the Americans were generally seen in favor by the Persian people. This was surely well-established when many Americans who were living in Persia in the early 1900s fought along the Persians’ and their rights in the Persian Constitutional Revolution from 1905 to 1911.

As quoted in the book, All the Shah’s Men, one person wrote, “…The American contribution to the improvement and, it was felt, the dignity of our impoverished, strife-torn country had gone far beyond their small numbers…Without attempting to force their way of life on people or convert us to their religion, they had learned Persian and started schools, hospitals, and medical dispensaries all over…” They went on to say, “The dedication of these exemplary men and women was not the only reason many Iranians admired the United States. American officials had spoken out to defend Iran’s rights. The United States sharply criticized the 1919 Anglo-Persian Agreement through which Britain acquired colonial powers in Iran.”

“That same year at Versailles, President Woodrow Wilson was the only world leader who supported Iran’s unsuccessful claim for monetary compensation from Britain and Russia for the effects of their occupation during World War I. In the mid-1920s an American envoy in Tehran was able to report that ‘Persians of all classes still have unbounded confidence in America.'” Of course, needless to say, it was also the US President, Woodrow Wilson, who would, unfortunately, lead America out of a more non-interventionist leaning foreign policy, into a hawkish mentality of a pursuit of war and control in the world from WWI to his constant concern for control over the Middle East. To this day, his policies plague American politics creating countless numbers of problems for the US and the world in an onslaught of political blowback.

In 1935, with relations with and influence from Nazi Germany, Persia’s name was changed to ‘Iran.’ This was a cognate of the word ‘Aryan,’ as the Nazis were in pursuit of the origins of the actual Aryan nation of people, and Persia’s leader, Reza Shah, wanted to establish good relations with the growing German powers. Not only was this a means of changing the direction of the Persian nation, but it was also a way of aligning with the Nazis against the British and Russians who had plundered their land for well over a century. This allegiance to Nazi Germany would prove tragic for Iran in WWII, as in 1941, the Anglo-Soviet Allies invaded and ensured the Nazis could not keep reign over the region.

With growing tensions over the following ten years from the British setting up the Anglo-Persian Oil Company also in 1935, Persians’ boiling tempers over increased economic struggles, and the ongoing introduction and implementation of Socialism, after also being struck left and right by the British, Americans, Russians, Turks, Afghans, and others, Iran voted to nationalize the Anglo-Persian Oil Company. The name was then changed to the National Iranian Oil Company. This, then, led to Mohammad Reza Shah officially signing the 1951 declaration that the State was the sole owner of the company, and put Mossadegh as Iran’s Prime Minister.

Mossadegh’s office prompted news outlets around the world to respond and criticize from various perspectives. The British press criticized Mossadegh for being like Robespierre, very Socialistic in a negative way, after Iran essentially stole the company rights. While the US, on the other hand, praised Mossadegh for being like Thomas Jefferson freeing Iran from the British as Jefferson helped to free America from the British. Although, the British interpretation of the events was probably more accurate than the Americans’, both the British and the US colluded together in 1953 to overthrow Mossadegh and return the Shah.

In 1953, the CIA and Britain’s M16 staged a coup in Iran to overthrow Mossadegh because it was clearly evident that he was attempting to allow the Soviets into Iran instead of the Western Allies. The US policy at the time, the Truman Doctrine, stated that the US would come to the aid and defense of any people threatened by Communism. Mossadegh’s introduction of disorder within Iran was eventually the downfall of the Shah and allowed Socialists and Communists to infiltrate Iran ever since.

Iran has been continuously influenced by the outside world in that it has lost most of its military capabilities coming from the 5th largest military power in the world and then losing most of it all by the early 1980s after the Iran-Iraq war. Iran now continues to seek to create nuclear weaponry in order to better negotiate their place in the world and to possibly end many of the sanctions put on them by the US. The US and Iran used to have very good relations and diplomacy prior to the end of the Shah’s reign.

Today, Iranian leaders continue to utilize Diversionary War Theory “which states that leaders who are threatened by domestic turmoil occasionally initiate an international conflict in order to shift the nation’s attention away from internal troubles.”  Many of the economic difficulties are not only due to the government seizing companies especially in the oil and natural gas industries, but also the sanctions brought on by the US. So, it is not as obvious that leaders in Iran are attempting to divert the attention of the economic struggles of Iran, rather there is some justification for their anger towards the US.

Iran’s justified anger with the US was initiated by the US’ infiltration and establishment of Mohammad Reza Shah and continued acts of aggression such as severe economic and travel sanctions, and completely encircling Iran with US military bases and battleships. Furthermore, since the US has now backed out of the Iranian Nuclear Deal that was being led by the Obama administration, Trump’s administration will most likely be reimplementing these heavy economic and travel sanctions, along with several others that are surely to assist in the near total destruction of Iran.

This, of course, is not to suggest that Iran is completely innocent. Iran has innumerable cases of human rights violations and a severally corrupt government which allows paying one’s way out of crimes and completely undermining the private sector as the Iranian government has the power to seize and control privately owned companies at near whim.

Overall, Iran has been shaped, influenced, benefited, and harmed by the international community from almost the beginning. The strife caused through interventionist policies of outside nations and States has also prompted internal domestic conflicts and turmoil for Iran. These instances of influence have led to destabilization and the pessimistic future for Iran. Although Iran has done everything they believed possible to leverage their negotiations by building nuclear weapons and attempting a Nuclear Deal with the US, unfortunately it has thus far failed. Iran’s past one hundred years has already been filled with chaos and confusion, surely the next one hundred will be the same as long as countries outside of Iran continue to intervene and act in hostility towards them; and if Iran continues to violate the rights of individuals within their borders, there is no hope for Iran as a country.


To support 71 Republic, please donate to our Patreon, which you can find here.

Featured Image Source.

The Case for the Physical Removal of Communists

By Daniel Szewc | Poland

There are some cancers that are best left untouched. Communism is not one of them. A free man shall not let another control himself and his honor. In fact, even the thought of compulsory education should cause a proud Westerner to take out his rifle against a tyrant that would propose such coercion. But, what shall we do, when the tyranny is in the hands of many, not the few?

As Konrad Berkowicz said exclusively to 71 Republic, “I’m not an ultras of freedom of speech- if someone was to urge publicly for people to rape women, then I’d lock him up. So if someone was publicly inciting the re-installment of an income tax, I’d have to think about it…” This perfectly illustrates a technical standpoint for looking at communists, as violators of law, order and morality.

Perhaps a better example is a future thief plotting to steal land from everyone in a country. However, the authorities let him off after his saying “But I’m a communist!”. A society cannot survive on freedom of speech that includes such incitements to violence. The very thought makes about as much sense as proposing a peaceful country without an army, or not excusing force in self defense. This is the direct ideological equivalent. If somebody violates or threatens to violate freedom, they cannot expect to keep their own.

Of course, one may pose another argument, that freedom of speech should apply solely to Homo Sapiens. In Latin, “Homo Sapiens” means “wise man”, and as we all know, communists are anything but wise.

There is a proposal, especially prominent in the Polish libertarian movement, supporting the “Day of the Rope”. At this point, libertarians seize power and cleanse the country from communists. As anyone can assume, removing singular supporters of communism that do not spread their ideology wouldn’t make sense. The banishment from a libertarian society would only occur for those actively trying to infringe upon the rights of those who do not consent. Peaceful communists, therefore, it is best to leave alone, as they harm nobody.

Let us quote Polish libertarian, late Stefan Kisielewski. “One black sheep underlines the whiteness of the rest”. Communists will always exist, but integrating peaceful ones into society serves a key purpose. By underlining the failure of their policies, a society may ensure that no such movement becomes mainstream.


To support 71 Republic, please donate to our Patreon, which you can find here.