Friday, January 29, 2016

To successfully indoctrinate a college student into socialism, be sure to "excite the least antagonism"

Understanding the success rate of indoctrination in colleges requires understanding just how long professors have had to perfect their craft.

Enrico Ferri, who was a socialist from Italy, was one of the first to figure out how to seamlessly make this happen. Here's what was said at a Socialist International in 1901:


Jean Longuet outlined in a few words the significant history of the Group of Collectivist Students of Paris. The delegate of the socialist students of Budapest presented a thoughtful report analyzing the reasons why, contrary to what might have been expected from their past, and in spite of their liberal phraseology, most of the Hungarian students have allowed themselves to be carried away by their low nationalist passions.

The congress then opened for discussion the question of how and by what methods we might bring into socialism the greatest possible number of students. Three currents of opinion on this subject took shape.

1. Some delegates, especially Belgians and Hollanders, supported to some extent by Tarbouniech, maintained that it was useless to try to gain over to socialism the purely bourgeois students. Supporting their arguments by the example of their own countries, they showed that there can be no socialist students except where there exists - and to the extent that there exists - an intellectual proletariat. It is then upon the economic interests of the intellectual proletariat that our propaganda must exclusively - or almost exclusively - rest.

This is actually a quite interesting piece of commentary. So at this time at the late 1800s, early 1900s, the socialists believed their best way forward was to preach to the choir and extend outward from there. The exchange continued:

2. Ferri, relying on his personal experience as a professor, maintained that the best method of propaganda was science. If so many young men who are socialists in the university become reactionaries later, it is perhaps because nothing has been awakened in them but the enthusiasm of youth, which disappears quickly. We should, on the contrary, introduce socialism into their minds as a part of science, as the logical and necessary culmination of the biological and sociological sciences. No need of making a direct propaganda, which, on the other hand, would frighten many of the listeners, - enough to explain the whole of science, without the mutilations inflicted on it by the bourgeois orthodoxy, of their own accord the listeners will draw socialist conclusions. "Without pronouncing the word socialism once a year," said Ferri, "I make two thirds of our students conscious socialists." Among workingmen, it is necessary to add the socialist conclusions to the scientific premises, because the workingman's psychology permits it, and indeed requires it; before an audience of bourgeois intellectuals, it is necessary to give the scientific premises alone, and let each mind draw its own conclusions.

3. To this scientific or rational propaganda, Lagardelle adds a propaganda sentimental or moral in its character. In fact almost all the socialist students have come into socialism through moral motives - It is not till later that their readings and studies confirms their spontaneous feelings by scientific reasons.

I want to stop right here. Now isn't this interesting, that moral motives top the list of effectiveness for student indoctrination. We see that today, don't we? If you don't support the "correct" initiatives, the words "bigot", "hater", "sexist", and etc etc are thrown around. Just think..... they perfected this formula 120 years ago! Ferri is reporting this in 1901, which means he perfected it prior to the 1900s.

What Ferri says about letting his class "draw their own conclusions" is classic. Ask leading questions and let the students discover all on their own the incorrect answers. But that process of discovery allows the student to believe that they have in fact discovered the correct answer. Is it no wonder that university indoctrination is so effective?

Continuing with the exchange:

The following resolution, presented by Lagardelle, was adopted by a unanimous vote of the nationalities except that Holland and Bulgaria dissented.

"The Congress holds that while appealing to the class interests of the future intellectual proletarians, the socialist propaganda in university circles should be addressed more particularly to the scientific spirit, to the moral sentiments, and to the democratic aspirations of the students."

And that's where we are today. Why is America regarded, taught as a democracy in the colleges? Because of a resolution adopted nearly unanimously back in 1901. America is not a democracy, it is a republic. But this line is necessary so as to appeal to future student socialists, and thoroughly indoctrinate them.

Last section of the exchange. This is critical, since the invitation is for graduating students to become professors themselves, and repeat the bloody process all over again so that it never ends:

Boucher, in a report presented in the name of the Group of Collectivist Students of Paris, contrasted with the old socialist method, which required nothing but disciplined sharpshooters, the socialism of to-day, which calls for intelligent men. He attempted to trace a course of study for the socialists of the people's universities, insisting upon the necessity of a unified programme and of the co-ordination of the efforts of the professors. He concluded by inviting the socialist students to enter the people's universities, either as professors or as voluntary critics; there is, apparently, the real battle-field for the socialist students, there is the role which is most suitable to them in the whole range of the movement; that which will excite the least antagonism, and where they will be the most useful.

I encourage you to read more than what I quoted.

Do not overlook this. It is important to understand how this machine works, and also important to understand when the machine was built. Here it is.

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Would progressive ideologues freak out if an insurance company claimed that policies were living and breathing documents?

At the time I signed my policy. That's the deal. But what if the insurance company had a panel of nine experts wearing black robes that actually said that the policy was a little different than that, just because I signed my policy 5 years ago? Hey, things have changed. We need to evolve with the times. All that insurance providers ask or desire is permission - in an era when "development," "evolution," is the scientific word - to interpret this policy according to the Darwinian principle; all they ask is recognition of the fact that a policy is a living thing and not a machine. Now I hope you don't misunderstand - An insurance policy is no more living and breathing than the Constitution is. But I think this is an instructive exercise in understanding the beliefs of progressivism. And yes, that was a quote directly from Woodrow Wilson, with one or two words changed.

Saturday, January 2, 2016

Where did the "Initiative, Referendum, and Recall" movement begin?

One of the most visible and well known efforts of the early 20th century progressive movement was the movement bearing these three words: Initiative, Referendum, and Recall.

Where does that come from? Those five words are the death-knell of progressivism. "Where does that come from?", whatever "that" happens to be in the context of progressivism.

Most of our past history lessons that address the topic(as much as we remember them) tell us that the Initiative, Referendum, and Recall were born from the progressive movement. Wikipedia's page on the topic carries that same message, since only "reliable sources" can be used on Wikipedia. This doesn't really tell us much, and just restates in a different way what I've already said.

The system of Initiative, Referendum, and Recall, initially just Initiative and Referendum, or sometimes shortened to "I" and "R" or I&R, first came to America by way of watching how people in Switzerland did things at the time. American progressives looked to Swiss socialists and believed that with this single process, the Swiss had a great idea. Much has been written about this, so I'm moving on.

While South Dakota was the first state to move to I&R in 1898, and Utah became the second in 1900, I&R has another name. It is known as "The Oregon System", and it's been known by that name for 100 years.(Link 1, Link 2)

The father of The Oregon System is one William Simon U'Ren, a progressive republican, who is known to have been a proponent of I&R going back to 1892. U'Ren's Wikipedia page is surprisingly quite honest about the fact that U'Ren saw I&R as a path forward to seeing Georgist(Henry George) ideas get implemented in his state and elsewhere.(this early Encyclopedia entry states the same)

This is where the fun begins.

Arthur Nichols Young, a historian of the Single Tax movement, pointed out that "For nearly twenty five years single taxers have advocated the initiative and referendum as a means of getting their measures before the people for discussion." This was the sentence that got me looking. Can we test and prove this to be the case? Well, 25 years would put it at 1891, so the math works. So now we just need to know whom. U'Ren, of course. But what were his influences, and what did he say? We have already established his influence from Henry George, but there's also another important component. U'Ren read a book titled Direct Legislation Through the Initiative and Referendum, but I'll get to this at the end.

As for what U'Ren said on the topic, he stated the following at a Single Tax Conference held in New York, on November 19-20th, 1910:

I read Progress and Poverty in 1882, and I went just as crazy over the Single Tax idea as any one else ever did. I knew I wanted the Single Tax, and that was about all I did know. I thought I could get it by agitation, and was often disgusted with a world that refused to be agitated for what I wanted. In 1882 (sic) I learned what the Initiative and Referendum is, and then I saw the way to the Single Tax. SO I QUIT TALKING SINGLE TAX, not because I was any the less in favor of it but because I saw that the first job was to get the Initiative and Referendum, so that the people independently of the Legislature, may get what they want rather than take what the Legislature will let them have.

If there's one thing you can trust, it's that progressives will use deceit to their advantage whenever necessary.

Now, as to the book Direct Legislation Through the Initiative and Referendum. What's interesting about this book is the book's publisher: "True Nationalist Publishing". What's important about that is that "True Nationalist" was a publishing company formed to push out Edward Bellamy's Nationalist ideas; ideas based on his book Looking Backward, which was the genesis of the Nationalist Movement in the United States.

It should not be any wonder then, why I&R was so successful and became the Progressive Movement's first signature accomplishment. Both of the Progressive Movement's most important early efforts - The Single Tax/Georgists and the Nationalists were on board driving it forward.

This is a very important thing to understand about the beginnings of the progressive movement. Henry George and Edward Bellamy are to progressivism what Engels and Marx are to communism.

Friday, January 1, 2016

Theosophy and Nationalism

In "The Key to Theosophy: Being a Clear Exposition, in the Form of Question and Answer, of the Ethics, Science, and Philosophy for the Study of which the Theosophical Society Has Been Founded", Helena Petrovna Blavatsky wrote the following: (page 44)
The organization of Society, depicted by Edward Bellamy, in his magnificent work "Looking Backwards," admirably represents the Theosophical idea of what should be the first great step towards the full realization of universal brotherhood. The state of things he depicts falls short of perfection, because selfishness still exists and operates in the hearts of men. But in the main, selfishness and individualism have been overcome by the feeling of solidarity and mutual brotherhood; and the scheme of life there described reduces the causes tending to create and foster selfishness to a minimum.

Madame Blavatsky was a noted member of the British Fabian Society, and the founder of the Theosophical Society. Her glowing endorsement of Bellamy's book Looking Backward is quite interesting. Like Blavatsky, Annie Besant, another Fabian and top leader within the Theosophical Society, wrote this: (The Changing World and Lectures to Theosophical Students, page 40)

If you are going to make the men who should give better work to the country than the weeding of paths weed their own paths for themselves, then you are putting a check on the whole of the higher kinds of labour on which the nobler national life depends, for it is as true now as it ever was that man does not live by bread alone. If you are going to make every man do manual labour, you can get nothing more than the kind of paradise that you find in "Looking Backward," which is more a paradise for the respectable suburb than for a nation that needs art and beauty, music and literature. Those things want leisure to produce and time to perfect.

After Bellamy passed away, other Fabians cheered the fact that under the guise and title of "Nationalism",(which is the name that Bellamy gave his socialist ideas) Bellamy was the first to successfully(in a major way) foster socialist ideas in the United States.

When Bellamy talked about "Nationalism", what he meant was the other meaning of the word - the nationalization of all industry in the hands of government. That's a large part of what Blavatsky and Besant like so much about his work.