Lenin-hulk Smash and Grab Power- On The State And Revolution Part 3– by Amanda S. Green


Lenin-hulk Smash and Grab Power- On The State And Revolution Part 3– by Amanda S. Green

Last night, I commented that reading Lenin in English seemed to be more difficult than it had when I first read it in Russian. Whether that’s the case or not, one thing is clear, Lenin was a master of stating a premise, cherry-picking supporting quotes from foundation documents and then convincing people only he and his followers were the true believers and guardians of socialism.

Unlike my previous posts (which you can find here and here), I’ve going to cover several chapters today. The reason is simple. Lenin was a lawyer and these chapters are prime examples of how he states the same principles and comes to the same conclusions. The only real difference is one chapter is based on quotes from Marx and the other on quotes from Engels. In fact, it would be easy to say it all boils down to this: the bourgeois state must be violently overthrown. The proletariat state will follow and it will gradually erode but it will be slow and the new state will put the boot heel on the necks of everyone who doesn’t comply until that erosion is complete and we have a true socialist commune at some undetermined time in the future.


The problem with leaving it that way is we miss the nuances of what Lenin advocated. More importantly, we miss the nuances of what members of our own government – not to mention those who want to be members of the government – have been trying to implement here. Do not be fooled by the fact they are trying to work within the confines of our Constitution (or find ways around it). They are determined to change our government and our way of life here in the U.S. Oh, they might think they are doing the “right” thing, but that is because they have fallen for the utopian bullshit so many do who think socialism is the only way for us to survive.

On to Lenin.

It is interesting, and perhaps a bit reassuring, to note Lenin’s comments about those he felt did not understand nor embrace what he saw as the true meaning of Marx’s comments about the overthrow of the state. Those people, he felt, had distorted Marx’s views by believing in a slow development of the socialist state instead of the overthrowing of the state. “In fact, the exact opposite is the case. Marx’s notion is that the working class must break up, smash the ‘ready-made state machine’, and not confine itself merely to seizing hold of it.” (TSAR pg 34) So far, we haven’t seen that in the U.S. However, don’t fool yourself. That time is coming if we don’t start recognizing the signs and take a stand. That is especially true now, when the liberals are so deep in Trump Derangement Syndrome that the very mention of a military parade can send them into apoplexy. It is true when you have experts of media manipulation like Donny Deutsch calling for people to take to the streets to start a revolution. So it is more important than ever that we know what their handbook says and understand it even better than they do. That is the only way for us to anticipate their next move and counter it.

“These words, ‘to smash the bureaucratic– military state machine’, concisely express Marxism’s principal lesson on the tasks of the proletariat in the revolution in relation to the state.” (TSAR, pg 34) To smash. Not to change. Not to evolve. Not to reform. To smash and, by inference, to destroy.

“[P]articular attention is due to Marx’s extremely profound remark that the destruction of the bureaucratic– military state machine is ‘the prerequisite for every true people’s revolution’.” (TSAR, pg 35) Here is where we need to start really paying attention. The smashing of the bureaucratic-military state machine is just the first step. What comes next is what those who spout the joys of socialism forget. Worse, those who haven’t forgotten it simply ignore or wave off the failures of the Soviet Union and other socialist/communist nations as having fallen from the one true way.

When discussing 1871 Europe, Lenin wrote:

A ‘people’s’ revolution tugging the majority along into the movement, could be such only if it embraced both the proletariat and the peasantry. These two classes then constituted the ‘people’. These two classes are united by the fact that the ‘bureaucratic– military state machine’ oppresses, crushes, exploits them. To smash this machine and break it up is truly in the interest of the ‘people’, of the majority, of the workers and the majority of the peasants: this is ‘the preliminary condition’ for a free union between the poorest peasants and the proletarians; and democracy in the absence of such a union is unstable and socialist transformation impossible. (TSAR pg 36)

Compare the above with some of the rhetoric we heard coming out of the Clinton or Sanders camps during the 2016 campaign season. Compare it with what we have heard from the more vocal BLM activists. Compare it with the fear-mongering we hear from the MSM. They might not say precisely to rise up and take to the streets in open revolution but that is the sub-texts.

So what do the “true” followers of Marx and, therefore, of Lenin want to follow the overthrow of the “state”? “[T]his machine was to be replaced by ‘the organization of the proletariat into the ruling class’, by ‘the conquest of democracy’.” (TSAR pg 37) In other words, one ruling class is being replaced by another. Yes, that’s been said before by the foundation documents and by Lenin. It will be said many more times. Lenin was, if nothing else, astute and understood people needed to see, read, hear something said more than once to remember it. He also knew if you said it often enough and with enough fervor and by hitting on what the basic concerns of his audience was, he could manipulate them to his point of view. It wasn’t any different from what the world would see approximately 20 years later with Adolph Hitler and how he could whip up the German peoples.

Lenin turns the discussion back to the Paris Commune.

Thus the Commune appears to have replaced the smashed state machine ‘only’ by fuller democracy: the abolition of the standing army; the provision that all officials should be elected and subject to recall. But as a matter of fact this ‘only’ signifies a gigantic replacement of certain institutions by other institutions of an essentially different kind . . . It is still necessary to suppress the bourgeoisie and its resistance . . . But the organ of suppression is now the majority of the population, and not a minority as always occurred under slavery, serfdom and wage slavery. And as soon as it is the majority of the people itself which suppresses its oppressors, a ‘special force’ for suppression is no longer necessary! In this sense the state begins to wither away. (TSAR, pp 38-39)

Now, I don’t know about you, but I’ve studied history and I’ve yet to see the evolution of a so-called socialist state to one where no “special force for suppression” is no longer necessary. In Russia, they’ve had 100 years to “suppress the bourgeoisie and its resistance”. If the socialist plan really worked, wouldn’t the proletariat majority be strong enough by now to do away with the “special force”? Sure, they might want to keep a standing army of volunteers to protect the state against invasion, but they shouldn’t need a police force or other means of suppression by now, should they? Hell, shouldn’t we be seeing some sign of erosion into a true people’s commune by now? Or is the erosion so slow it moves at less than glacial speeds?

Somehow, I think those who followed Lenin missed this part of his missive as well: “Complete electivity of all officials without exception; their subjection to recall at any time . . . .” (TSAR pg 40) When is the last time we saw the senior leadership of Russia “recalled” without there being a putsch? Yet if we point this out to the Bernies of the world, they either say Russia isn’t a true socialist nation or they sidestep and focus only on social issues. What they refuse to admit, possibly even to themselves, is you can’t divorce the political from the social.

In every capitalist country where there is a peasantry (as in most capitalist countries), the vast majority of the peasants are oppressed by the government and yearn both for its overthrow and for ‘cheap’ government. This can be realized only by the proletariat; and in realizing it, the proletariat is simultaneously taking a step towards the socialist reconstruction of the state. (TSAR pp 40-41)

So, the “peasantry” isn’t capable of realizing the overthrow of the government and must be led by the proletariat. Tell me how this isn’t classism in its most basic?

The way out of parliamentarianism is not, of course, the elimination of representative institutions and electivity but the conversion of the representative institutions from talking shops into ‘working’ institutions . . . Parliaments are only places where chattering goes on with the special purpose of fooling the ‘common people’ . . . In the Soviets, the ‘socialist’ gentlemen-cum-ministers are duping credulous rustics with phrase-mongering and resolutions. (TSAR pg 42)

This is where we have to be careful. This is also very similar to the sentiment we saw arise in 2016, a sentiment the DNC and Clinton didn’t recognize or understand. Many voters felt there were too many talking heads in Washington and those talking heads had lost touch with the common people. They wanted someone who understood their needs and concerns. Trump and his team understood that and the electorate responded. That means the electorate will also respond to a liberal who says with sincerity, whether real or fake, what they want to hear. (Can anyone say “Obama”?)

There can be no talk of eradicating the bureaucracy at once, everywhere and completely. That is utopia. But to smash the old bureaucratic machine at once and to begin immediately to construct a new one that facilitates the gradual eradication of all bureaucracy: this is not utopia, this is the experience of the Commune, this is the direct, immediate task of the revolutionary proletariat. (TSAR, pg 44)

This is the trap laid first by Marx and Engels and then by Lenin. The carrot of smashing the status quo of a government is dangled before the discontented and the disenfranchised. But they aren’t allowed to look behind the curtain to see that nothing has really changed. All those clamoring for revolution have done is replace one so-called oppressive government with another, one that will be even more oppressive in order to hold onto power. Remember, despite the claims that everything will be placed in the hands of the people, that doesn’t happen until the “erosion”. There is still an army and police to repress the bourgeois and those who won’t accede to the new regime. So how is this better?

Lest we forget one of the main reasons for Lenin writing The State and Revolution, he reminds us with this quote: Certainly no opponents of the advice of Engels and Marx will be found among the Bolsheviks. (TSAR, pg 59) Then, as is his want, he goes on to show how others are not true proponents of their writings, either forgetting or perverting the meaning of true socialism.

What we have to remember is much of what the socialists today espouse are the feel-good issues: universal healthcare, free education, living wages, etc. On the surface, those are all great ideas and something most of us could get behind. It is only when we peel back the layers and start asking questions like, “How are they going to be paid for if we aren’t writing the check?” that things get sticky. Unfortunately, the “true believers” don’t ask those questions or don’t consider the consequences of saying the government will pay for it.

After all, who pays for the government? If we leave healthcare in the government’s hands, what happens when we have a shutdown? What happens if we get into a budget crunch and funds have to be cut for healthcare? I know the answer and so do you but the true believers refuse to admit it. They refuse to look at the waiting lists for treatment so many countries with socialized medicine have and the number of people who suffer complications or – worse – who die as a result.

It is up to us to ask those hard questions. It is up to us to demand answers, not just from the government but from those trying to ram these changes down our throats. The first step in doing so is to understand their political philosophy better than they do.

Until next week. Now I need to find something to drink and something to get Lenin, not to mention Marx and Engels, out of my head.

[For raising the tone of this blog — ATH is culture! — and helping me with the exposing of the roots of the current mess — in her case with more facts! — if you decide to  send the woman a drink–  And her Amazon author page is here -SAH]



187 thoughts on “Lenin-hulk Smash and Grab Power- On The State And Revolution Part 3– by Amanda S. Green

  1. “The carrot of smashing the status quo of a government is dangled before the discontented and the disenfranchised. But they aren’t allowed to look behind the curtain to see that nothing has really changed. All those clamoring for revolution have done is replace one so-called oppressive government with another, one that will be even more oppressive in order to hold onto power.”
    Or, in the words of Pete Townsend, “Meet the new boss. Same as the old boss.”
    There was an anthology of anarchist writings that came out in the late 1960s, Patterns of Anarchy, which I recently tracked down at the local university library and reread. One of the chapters was a piece by Bakunin titled “Karl Marx: The Bismarck of Socialism.” I wouldn’t call Bismarck’s communist anarchism a desirable model in any way, but in diagnosing the repressive implications of Marx’s ideas he was dead on target.

      1. Unfortunately, people can be sheeple all too easily. That’s especially true if they haven’t taken time to study the foundation documents of the major political or social movements and then how they have been applied throughout history. Instead, they listen to what the speakers say and are moved by how something is said without listening to what was said or what it actually meant.

        We see that today with all the folks who clamor for universal health care. Yeah, it would be great to have everyone with good insurance. It would be great not to have to worry about going bankrupt to get treatment. So when they hear a Bernie or an Obama or Clinton talking about how they have the solution and all you have to do is vote them into office, people will fall for the carrot. What they don’t do is look beyond the fact that the government will pay for it. They don’t ask the hard questions.

        Or to put it in terms of local government: a decade or so ago, one of the neighboring communities to the one I live in decided it would be a good way to bring folks to the city on day trips by building a waterpark at their main city park. Because it was new and different — and a lot cheaper than the commercial water parks in the area, people went and the city saw an increase in city revenues. Well, my city and several others couldn’t be outdone. So we had people campaigning for — and getting elected to — the city council on the sole promise they would build a water park here. They did and while it brings people in, no one considered the cost of building it or maintaining it — all of which wound up impacting other city services because the money has to come from somewhere. Consequences are not something the sheeple look at. They simply like the promise of the goodness to come.

        1. Oh they do consider the ramifications. Once the money becomes an issue they start attacking the “rich” and complaining that they aren’t supposed to be the ones paying taxes.

  2. There is reason I walk to a bar every Thursday morning of late. I can have a prepared meal, and someone else mixes the drinks. And the limited selection excludes Absinthe.

      1. There is also a reason I deal with cash there. And if I can’t tip properly, i don’t go. Ox might be slow, but ox have standards. But if you wish to review so, I shan’t argue against such.

      2. This — Rising Star: The Making of Barack Obama — looks like possibly interesting reading. See Power Line item (and embedded links):

        I flagged Rising Star: The Making of Barack Obama as one of my top 10 books of 2017. Written by David Garrow in the mold of Robert Caro, it is a staggeringly researched biography. I haven’t read the book from cover to cover, but in what I have read I think I have learned something new on every page.

        Professor Garrow is a principled man of the left. He broke new ground with his 1981 book The FBI and Martin Luther King, Jr., drawing on documents extracted from the FBI with a little help from the Freedom of Information Act. He followed up with his Pulitzer Prize-winning history, Bearing the Cross: Martin Luther King, Jr., and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference.

        Tucker Carlson invited Professor Garrow to discuss Rising Star on his FOX News show this past May. The video is posted here on YouTube. Carlson invited Professor Garrow back this week for his quick take on the case of Carter Page (less than three minutes). We await further information before we can form final judgment(s), but let us hear from Professor Garrow in the meantime.


        Quotable quote: “The Steele Dossier is C-R-A-P. It’s BS.”

  3. I note that this is the rhetoric of the radical feminists: “Smash the patriarchy.” Equality my tiny toenail; these women think they should rule, Supposedly this is because they are kinder, gentler, and more compassionate than men. Umm…no they aren’t. Not if they are talking about smashing and destroying.

    1. Those who think of women as the kinder, gentler, weaker sex… have they MET them?! Weaker in some ways, yes. But… many a time the better part of valor is knowing when to be.. elsewhere.

      1. Given their demands for “free” contraception, and unlimited abortion on demand, they don’t even want a matriarchy. Government by whores is more like it.

        1. Honestly, the only difference for some of them is they’re demanding to be their own pimps.

          Huh, that sounds a lot like “the proletariat will own the means of production servicing.”

      2. Just going to leave the opening verses here….
        The Female of the Species

        WHEN the Himalayan peasant meets the he-bear in his pride,
        He shouts to scare the monster, who will often turn aside.
        But the she-bear thus accosted rends the peasant tooth and nail.
        For the female of the species is more deadly than the male.

        When Nag the basking cobra hears the careless foot of man,
        He will sometimes wriggle sideways and avoid it if he can.
        But his mate makes no such motion where she camps beside the trail.
        For the female of the species is more deadly than the male.

        When the early Jesuit fathers preached to Hurons and Choctaws,
        They prayed to be delivered from the vengeance of the squaws.
        ‘Twas the women, not the warriors, turned those stark enthusiasts pale.
        For the female of the species is more deadly than the male….
        Rest here….

      3. There’s that whole “woman as destroyer of civilization” thing, too…

        If you’ve never seen the “Black Pigeon Speaks” bit on YouTube, you should take a look at it while you still can. I don’t know that I agree with a lot of his points, but the man does lay out a fairly cogent argument.

          1. Interesting blog, but… The comment-leavers…? Lordy, Lordy… When I’m reading someone and going “Now… That’s taking it waaaaaaaay over the line…”, that’s how you know you’re looking at an extremist.

    2. Never mistake the presented public persona and words of these people for what they really are or mean to do. If anything, one should always take what they say as being the exact, diametric opposite of what they mean to do. It’s how they think, and how they form their mindsets: They know they do not dare speak what they really mean and intend, for that would prevent them from ever putting themselves into power.

      Any cause that uses the “ism” suffix seems to be built on this mentality and outlook. There’s always the secret self and intent, concealed behind the pretty-pretty public facade. As well, there is the fact that so many of these causes and groups got their starts as front groups for Communist subversion, and that they have never openly acknowledged that fact or overcome it.

        1. You think you’re being humorous, but take a long, hard look at how our so-called “Big-C” movement conservatives have basically just been playing enablers and blockers for the other side…

          I’m not a Democrat because I’m an honest man, and not a crook. I’m not a Republican because I’m not a total moron, either. These sorry f**ks have been playing us for fools for too long; look at our sainted Senator McCain, he who campaigned on getting rid of Obamacare, and who chose to vote against actually, y’know… Getting rid of Obamacare.

          How stupid do you have to be to still be a movement Republican, these days? I only vote for those assholes because they’re always the “least bad” choice, out of the ones we get.

          The minute any political movement devolves into “-ismism”, to coin a phrase, is the moment a person of moderate with and intelligence ought to abandon it, because adoption of that “-ism” suffix generally means they’ve become intellectually bankrupt, the same way that one should sell stock in any corporation building a fancy new custom headquarters building. That’s usually their high-water mark, and it’s all downhill from there…

          1. Arizona “conservatives” have been dealing out disappointment since Barry Goldwater, who by the time he died was sounding more like Tip O’Neill than Ronald Reagan.

            1. The unpleasant reality is that any politician calling themselves “conservative” is almost always lying. Usually to us, sometimes to themselves…

              The framing has been set by the Progressive Leftists and their ilk for far too long. You get these guys to Washington, D.C., and what happens…? The acid of leftish thought and action starts eating at their half-hearted beliefs, and we see them gradually take on the characteristics of their supposed “enemies”. You can read Orwell’s Animal Farm in both directions, because McCain and Snowball are one and the same, regardless of their stated positions starting out. The acid bath of leftist statism drowns them, inevitably.

      1. Good example of feminist hypocrisy on display:

        “Women can choose whatever they want to be.”
        “Women shouldn’t be in purely decorative jobs.”
        Feminist harpy talking over everyone else, and thinks that other women being put out of a job is a great thing because of maybes and feels.

        1. The F1 Grid Girls are in protest. Many loved the racing as well as the job leading to other jobs, and others got good pay in places there isn’t much in the way of good pay for females.

            1. hey, gots an idear.
              As Lena makes so much we can either use her and all the other rich feminists’ money to pay these now poor outa-work girls. Socialism for true, right? take from thems wiff to gives to thems wiffout.
              or let them outa-work girls punch Lena in the face . . . Grid Girls’ choice.

          1. They make that “good pay” on their own, not through the efforts of Feminism, so it is not legitimate.

          2. And at least one former Grid Girl managed to parley the things she learned on the job and the connections that she made into a job as a stunt driver.

            1. *snort* STILL not good enough because she’s not the superstar of whatever movie she’s doing stunts for, thus ‘someone else is getting the credit’ etc etc.

              I hate feminists. They managed to take away every single woman’s achievement by simply going ‘but (insert nonreason, because false equivalence/invalidation here!)’

            2. Stunt driving, Fashion modeling, Working for Car companies (PR and iirc engineering), working for the Sponsors, etc.
              A long line of contacts has been removed from them.

          3. I wish them well; I sadly think ‘they can protest all they want, nobody’s gonna stand up for women against feminists.’

            Hard to win when the other side is constantly changing the rules, unless you decide to go ‘screw this, I’m not playing by your rules any more, they are insane’ and then you’ll have the courts breathing down your neck…

            1. that, and the feminists are working double overtime to end most of those women’s jobs, so they are going to have less and less voice as well.
              All part of the plan

    3. Not only do these women think they should rule, they think they CAN rule.

      And if there is a way to bring about THE HANDMAIDEN’S TALE (a rather low order probability), this is the way to do it. Show men, who are stronger, more aggressive, and more technically minded, that they are going to be accused of rape no matter what they do, so they might as well give in to the primitive ape inside. And, should it come about, these stupid twats will still be whining “how could his happen?!?!” as the slave collar snaps shut on their necks.

      1. I suspect that is 99% of why there is an apparent* increase in the number of men identifying as alt-right or white-supremacist or white-separatist. “No matter what I do, I’m sexist, racist, and at fault. OK, then, I’ll join the local klavern or form one on the internet, insult the first broad who walks by, and act like the jerk you want me to be.”

        *I say apparent because I trust the media on this topic about as far as I can throw Mt. Everest.

        1. I don’t think you’re wrong.

          From my perspective? I think we “white males” (at least, of my generation), as a group, were sold a bill of goods by some really slick swindlers.

          The premise was, “white male power” was illegitimate, that we’d aggregated that supposed “power” via illegitimate means, and that we should “give up that power” to those we’d wronged. Regardless of our actual personal culpability for these things, we were indoctrinated to be magnanimous in handing over this supposed “power” to those who we’d taken it from. Turns out? Most of those people weren’t interested in actually doing much in the way of positive work with that “power”, and were mostly interested in putting themselves at the top of the authority pyramid, so that they themselves could lord it over others with what they’d been given.

          The supposed equity and amity between others that was supposed to come about, apparently through magic…? Nowhere to be seen; instead, they double down on it all, and they’ve moved on to things that are utterly ridiculous, when you do honest math, like “pay equity”.

          White men still do the majority of the really dangerous, dirty jobs, the ones that kill them. We don’t see women whining for equity in job danger, and to tell you the truth, if they finally do get pay equity for different jobs just because of the gender ratios in them, I’m going to start working for a lottery-style deal where we start going into female-majority workplaces and randomly selecting the employees for “equitable” job hazards. It’s only fair, after all…

          Say, Joe-Bob Smith, the tree-feller up in the mountains has a bad day, then we’re going to randomly select one of the “safer” job positions to inflict that same sort of “bad day” on one of them. “Fairly”, and randomly, of course…

          “Oh, dear, you’ve hit the lottery, Ms. Fink… You have to have that left leg of yours crushed, and then we’re gonna wait the same hour-and-a-half Joe-Bob waited, to take you to the hospital…”.

          You want equality of pay? Sweetheart, meet “equality of hazard”.

          The more I see of this brave, new world of equity, the more I suspect that we’re going to be seeing a counter-revolution by the white males of the follow-on generations to mine, who are going to see how thoroughly the deck is being stacked against them, and who are going to say “Bugger that for a game of soldiers…”, to borrow a phrase from the British. What follows after, I don’t know, but it won’t be pretty, and it won’t be in accordance with the institutions or the people who’ve so thoroughly betrayed the trust those young men put in them. I wouldn’t rule out a full-scale move over into traditional gender-role repressive religion, either–Playing their cards right, the Islamics could make hay while the sun shined. End results? Who the hell knows, but I can guarantee that there will have been a huge counter-reaction before this is all over. The Victorians followed the libertine excesses of the Georgian and Regency period, after all…

          1. Scary part, by-the-by, is that if that happens conservative evangelicals would probably end up being the most feminist group out there. And wouldn’t that be something a lot of people wouldn’t be able to wrap their heads around.

            1. Well, a lot of this crap is “their fault” in the first damn place, to be quite honest. If you can assess such things in such a manner…

              Much of the unrealistic BS we have going on between the genders stems from the idealistic placement of women and mothers on the pedestals that the Christian evangelicals put them on. Which, when I think about it, ain’t exactly accidental, either–Who was really running most of those churches, down at the community level? Of course Mother and the “weaker sex” were going to get every consideration; they were running the show. Men got censured for every negative thing they did, in that world, but the equivalent bad behaviors, like making their lives a living hell? Oh, no… Being a nag and a scold was positively applauded, because that meant that Missy Prissy was a “good woman”.

              From where I’m sitting, much of the angst between the sexes stems from all too many males playing the indulgent sugar daddy, and giving in too easily to many of the ridiculous demands that the harpies and harridans of the female activist realm, who really should have been exposed to the reality of what they were demanding. Look at the genius things the first batch of “empowered women” got up to, and how they were enabled by their over-indulgent menfolk: Prohibition, anyone? Yeah; let’s make America’s criminal class wealthy, hand over insane amounts of power to the government, and accomplish… What, exactly? A nice, warm feeling of moral superiority to all those male drunks, who we’ve finally put in their places?

              You want full workplace equity, darlings? Here ya go: Strap on the tree-climbing gear, and here’s your hardhat. You don’t get to just glom onto the office jobs, where we used to put our broken-down males, and stay all nice and warm while shuffling papers.

              One of the larger inequities of all the “gender relations” crap is that an honest assessment of what each side of the gender equation was actually up to, and what was entailed in those roles. The whining activist women never bothered to learn the reality of what went on the male world, and never acknowledged the prices paid for all those “benefits and powers” they fantasized about men having, the majority of which didn’t actually exist. We still don’t force women to sign up for Selective Service, nor do we have plans to draft them in time of war, yet there is no movement agitating for that infamous inequity to be changed, now is there? From where I sit, as an 18 year-old male, I’ve got unlimited liability in exchange for my right to government benefits and the right to vote. As the female equivalent? I get all of that, for nothing. No wonder the girls think they’re better than boys…

              Most of the problem here is that the agitating women, as a group, were never told the reality of things. Sweetheart, the reason you don’t make the same $25.00 an hour that the tow truck driver does for running dispatch in the office is that you’re not out on the G-damn road running the risk of getting killed by every idiot driver out there, or of having a car/truck slip off the J-hooks and kill your ass while you were trying to raise it.

              As well, the realities of all the ins-and-outs of real-world gender relations were summarily dismissed by all concerned, and the upper-class twit theorists who thought everybody could have a career, kids, and self-fulfillment never knew that their careers running the little frou-frou shops which their high-income husbands subsidized don’t quite equate to actually getting out into that work force as a real merchant, that raising kids without a live-in au pair or nanny isn’t quite the same as trying to do it with just a husband who also works while you’re working a nine-to-five for relative peanuts, and that self-fulfillment isn’t the same for those who are not equally well-compensated for their efforts…? Yeah.

              Things got off on the wrong foot, about the time the first Industrial Revolution ended, which happened to coincide with a revolution in medicine that enabled a bunch of social changes to snowball on themselves. The churches and other social institutions did not consider the second- and third-order effects, and now we’re living with them. As a culture and civilization, we may not survive their failure to consider ramifications over the long haul. At least, not in a recognizable form…

              1. My e-wife had a book, “Women Like Us”, which was based on interviews with first graduating class of women from Harvard Business School. They had been taught “Yes, you can have it all”. As it turned out, no, they couldn’t. They could have a motherhood and a family, or they could have a successful career with the men. Trying to do both meant that both suffered. It’s still true.

                1. Minor typo there–I haven’t actually tried having an e-wife, although I did try the e-girlfriend thing. It didn’t work.

                  1. > e-girlfriend

                    Fantasy & Science Fiction Magazine, March 1963:
                    “The Shortest Science Fiction Love Story Ever Written”

                    Boy meets girl.

                    Boy loses girl.

                    Boy builds girl.

                    – Jeffrey Renner


                    I saw that the other day while cruising archive.org and saved it, because I knew it would come in handy someday…

                    1. I recall reading a varianr of that in an old (even then, mid-1970’s) joke book:

                      What’s the movie about?

                      Science fiction love story. You know, the usual: Boy meets girl. Boy loses girl. Boy builds new girl.

                2. Yeah, that… Don’t take what I’m saying as a universal attack on women, because the brave, new world of gender relations has pretty much screwed them as thoroughly as it has men, just in different ways.

                  I’m not convinced that the strait-jacket we had back in the old days was better, but it did have the signal advantage of being both time-tested and that it worked a bit better than we imagine it did in popular memory. The real position of women under the old regime was not quite what it is remembered as in the popular memory. Neither was the position of the men, either–Yeah, sure, there was a lot more outward “power”, whatever the hell that was, but the responsibilities that came with that power…? Those were generally upheld by society in general, regardless of what those men may have wanted. How many of those darling girls handing out the “White Feather” in WWI England would have been up for going over the lip of that nasty, nasty trench themselves…?

                  Any time you start analyzing things from one side’s perspective alone, it starts to look inequitable, and I think that the unfortunate fact is, we’ve been bamboozled into analyzing all too much of this gender-related “stuff” from the woman’s side alone. Yeah, sure–There were inequities and unfairness enough for you to make a case that things were in need of change, but the problem is, they never, ever looked at it from across the divide on the other side, and observed the conversant inequities that existed for men–Nor, signally, did they try to do anything about those.

                  Which is why we are now at a point where two young people, equally intoxicated, can take part in consensual sex, and only one of them is likely to be charged with rape.

                  Yeah, sure–Women are equal to men. What a laugh–In all too many substantial ways, women have been superior in society for as long as I’ve been alive, and many of them keep telling me that they’re not. Do let me know, my dears, when I can make a single verbal claim against a woman, and have her jailed, on my say-so alone, without the slightest bit of actual evidence existing. There’s “power”, and then there is “Power”. One is a false construct, the other actually exists in society.

                  1. I know women have been sold a bill of goods, oh how I know. I want a do over, but I don’t think my 18 year-old self would be willing to listen. Plus the fear and gut-level flight-fight reactions from surviving junior high and high school were probably too strong for me to have listened to anyone back then trying to warn me about shutting all men under age 60 out of my world.

                    1. Perhaps in the next life… I’m right there with you, on that whole “do-over” thing, because the bit that I bought into was that the odds were really good that I’d be dead in some misbegotten nuclear confrontation before the age of 35, so I left no hostages to fortune and decided I’d rather go out on my feet facing the enemy than not.

                      Turns out, we weren’t quite as doomed as I thought, and that maybe, maybe I should have given some thought to having some of those hostages-to-fortune of my very own. Ah, well… Shit happens, and the personality components of my genome probably shouldn’t be inflicted on the future, anyway.

                3. Actually, that not being able to have both is true only up to a point. It’s true if the woman follows the other tenet so many were taught — that they didn’t need a “partner” in their lives. The decline of the two parent family, especially in those households where the mother wants the children and the professional career, is where both the career and the family suffer. The problem with the “you can do whatever you want” is that (as I seem to keep preaching), the person buying into it doesn’t consider the consequences. This is my problem with the way our schools teach the kids that “everyone is a winner”. No, they aren’t — at least not all the time. And no, little Susie or Johnnie, you don’t get your way all the time.

                  While I’m heaping blame, I’m going to blame my generation — the tail end of the Boomers and right after. Too many of us had kids as status symbols and trotted them out to show who had the best football player or best pitcher or top model. Those parents gave unrealistic expectations and that is being passed on yet again.

              2. Kirk, on one level you’re right about the equality of pay thing, but I’ve got to jump in here. I get that you’re angry. Trust me, I’m angry at the asshat feminist idiots as well. But most women — yes, most — don’t want what you’re calling “full equality” of pay. What we want is to be paid the same for the same job if we do it as well as our male counterpart AND we have the same qualifications. We don’t care if someone in the company doing a different job in the company makes more (well, we do. Who doesn’t want to make more?), but we recognize the differences.

                The real problem is the media. It doesn’t give the majority of us a voice because we aren’t hitting the narrative they want. So they give the Lena Dunham’s of the world a voice. It is why there were so many women who did NOT vote for Hillary Clinton. We recognized the danger of what she touted both in this past election cycle and in the 2008 one.

                I will join you in railing against feminists, especially the capital “f” Feminists. I’ll even join in you railing against some of the evangelical conservatives because they are trying to roll society back a century or more and that ain’t gonna fly. So we fight them by learning their tactics. We fight them by finding candidates with our own values and expectations and working hard to not only get them on the ballots but elected. You may already be doing this. Where my frustration comes in is with so many who feel as we do who rant and rave but don’t step forward to help bring change by hitting the pavement to get an acceptable candidate elected.

                1. Amanda, you aren’t who my ire is directed towards, at all—You, or your sisters-in-nature. The people I’m angry with are the “activists”, their ideological fellow travellers, and their enablers of both sexes.

                  Give you a marker for how thoroughly these jackasses have screwed things up, here–I just spent a solid five minutes trying to decide whether I wanted to use the word “sexes” or “genders”. What. The. F**k.

                  The insanity needs to stop, and where it needs to stop is where we start wrapping ourselves around identification as groups, instead of as simply “people” of varying strengths, weaknesses, and ambitions.

                  I have a lot of animosity and ire towards the folks pushing “the cause” of women in uniform, for example. Little of that is directed at the women themselves, the majority of whom I was proud to serve alongside and lead. The problems were rarely of their making, especially on the enlisted side. The people I’m pissed at? The purblind activists, who place ideology above both people and common sense, and who have have turned rational discussion on any matter even remotely related to their hobby-horses into shouting matches devoid of any sense whatsoever.

                  What is interesting in all of this is how much of the stupidity, dysfunction, and outright lies trace back to a source not to far from the creature writing the book you’re reviewing here. Go looking, and what you’re going to find, at the root of all this current dysfunction and conflict between groups is a tie to somewhere in the ideological infrastructure of the former Soviet Union, or its intellectual antecedents. What you won’t find is any acknowledgement of that fact from the people pushing these issues in modern America.

                2. “I get that you’re angry. Trust me, I’m angry at the asshat feminist idiots as well. But most women — yes, most — don’t want what you’re calling “full equality” of pay. What we want is to be paid the same for the same job if we do it as well as our male counterpart AND we have the same qualifications. We don’t care if someone in the company doing a different job in the company makes more (well, we do. Who doesn’t want to make more?), but we recognize the differences. ”

                  Yes. ^^ THIS ^^

                  I’ve had 2 carrer’s. Yes “non-traditional” female ones. One Forestry, the other writing software. Former, never intended to work for the mills or logging companies, nor was my target job ever anything where the more dangerous positions transition into if they survive the negative possibilities of their dangerous job. Latter, physical ability, dangerous occupation, obviously, never came into play. Never, ever, did I request a position “because I was female”, but because I was qualified. When hired, was it “frosting on the cake” for the employer, likely.

                  Equal pay. For the most part, the companies I worked for worked off a published grid, based off of education, prior experience, & how long with that company. Last company, small firm, worked solely off of “how long with the company”. Did I resent the difference, between my pay and my co-workers, were north of $1000/month difference (will agree on a gap, but gap was way too high), after more than 10 years there, when my over all experience was more than anyone (except the owner’s), hell yes. Was it because I was female & they were all male. No.

                  Yes. Technically I had “options”, as much as anyone else does when one is approaching 60 … well maybe not. Before getting this job, I interviewed an average of 2x’s a week for 18 months. “Sorry you are over qualified.” was a common comment. Something I know a lot of male software writers also experience when looking for work when age is > 45. Not a candidate for self employment … HATE looking for work. I stuck around until I could retire.

                  1. The issue is not pay disparity, the issue is what people are willing to do to address the “problem” of pay disparity. As with opiod abuse oxygen addiction, the cure can be worse than the problem.

                  2. Not a candidate for self employment … HATE looking for work. I stuck around until I could retire.

                    N.B. – employer awareness of this can have a remarkably depressing effect on wages, just as employer awareness a staffer is being actively recruited can prove remarkable wage-enhancing. NEITHER factor has anything to do with which lavatory you prefer.

          2. > The premise was, “white male power” was illegitimate, that we’d
            > aggregated that supposed “power” via illegitimate means, and that
            > we should “give up that power” to those we’d wronged.

            Dunno about you mate, but that’s not what I was *told*. That may have been what they were thinking, but what they were saying was that race was basically irrelevant and that we all had more-or-less the same level of abilities. Which I took to mean that when you aggregated everyone within a “race” into a statistical norm we were pretty much equal, and thus you had to judge not by the color of their skin, but by their abilities, aptitudes and actions.

            In otherwords, that you SHOULDN’T treat people as members of some minority group, but as individuals. You know, on individual merit.

            Which I’m *perfectly* willing to do.

            But that stuff I quoted? That wasn’t what I was told in Highschool, although people were spouting that stuff a bit in college.

            1. Oh, nobody told me that in plain terms, either; it’s only in retrospect that I look back on what I was told and promised, parse the arguments, and realize what the bastards really meant.

              From where I’m sitting, it’s been one huge con job, going on since the Progressives really got going. They argued that it was “wrong” to put the mentally ill into institutions, that they ought to be free to live as others do. What was the end result…? Hordes of homeless drug addicts committing crimes and crapping in our streets, as well as decent, tax-paying people being unable to use the public parks we pay for. They argued that the justice system was “unfair” and “racist”, and what do we have to show for it…? Oh,yeah: Incredibly one-sided crime rates between the racial groups, and the claim that holding people merely accountable for their actions is somehow “racist”.

              On the whole, I don’t think any of this is coincidental, or accidental. The theorists who proposed all these brilliant social changes all had a similar outcome in mind, which was the destruction of the existing social order, and the imposition of something else, something unproven. And, here we are…

              Given the potholes in the road we’re on, I really doubt that wherever we are going is going to be some idyllic utopia. It’s more likely to be like Cuba, or Venezuela, a statist hell-hole with these “social theorists” in charge of everything.

              And, the funny thing is…? I used to be completely on-board, with all this touchy-feely crap. I bought into it, hook, line, and sinker; I was a true believer in their bullshit, having taken it in, literally, with the oh-so-proper influence of those who raised me. It’s only lately that I look around me, at the chaos and incipient madness that reigns in public life, and realize where the end state of their ideals is leading us.

              Liberty and rights automatically imply responsibilities. If you don’t inculcate the latter, requiring their fulfillment? Then, the abuse of the former becomes almost inevitable. When you template that over the current state of “gender relations”, you suddenly realize why so much of it all is screwed up beyond recognition.

          3. Hit post too quick.

            > What follows after, I don’t know, but it won’t be pretty,

            It’ll be called “bad luck”.

          4. It started off with a noble goal- various groups of people wanted to have a shot at equality, without officially sanctioned discrimination getting in the way. And people, for the most part, went along, as prosperous people tend to be generous and compassionate. The hope was by giving them assistance, they could catch up and become independent and law abiding.

            Then there was a side effect noticed- you could get stuff by selling the above- money, power, preference, votes. A nice racket by promising to fix problems, but never actually fixing them. Instead, more “problems” were found, new oppressed groups formed, and more demanded from the generous and compassionate. And the demands have gone from just wanting a chance, to strident and aggressive and insulting.

            And we’re at the point where the generosity is drying up, and the compassion is withering away.

          5. Oh yeah, that little problem of equality of hazard (good way to put it) — when told that 97% of workplace deaths are males, they come back with “Well then, we should make those workplaces safer!” Hello, do you really think men like dying any better than women do? Some jobs are just plain hazardous, and they’re already made as safe as they reasonably CAN be, or there wouldn’t BE men dying in them. (I suppose you could cut timber and dig coal in perfect safety using remote-control bots, but the output would be prohibitively expensive, not to mention insufficient.) Tellya what, gals, I’ll even let you design your workspace, and we’ll see how many workplace deaths result, as graphed against output.

              1. Which doubtless explains numbers like these:

                In Real Life[TM] I’m a pro dog trainer. And when you keep a large kennel, you learn interesting things about gender dynamics. Males beat each other up, then it’s settled forever and they go have a beer; but females fight to kill, and never forget who they want dead. All normal males are dominant to all normal females (tho it may not look that way to the insufficiently-experienced eye); introducing an intact male into a group of females (intact or not) immediately shuts off the female-infighting, but this doesn’t work if the male is neutered, which is to say, hormonally not-male. (Pediatric neuters behave like immature females, including the female sneakiness.)

                When adding males doesn’t shut down the female catfighting in human groups, consider that the males may be soyboys, and therefore socially female, except broken.

                1. I will cite one counter example — Maggie Thatcher — but that is the one example I can come up with. All other data points — Theresa May, Whassername, the -itch of Berlin, Hillary — seem to reinforce the Russian adage about the best form of government being a good Tsar, the worst form being a bad Tsar and the problem being far more bad Tsars than good ones.

                  I wouldn’t draw to two pair with those kind of odds and I sure as heck ain’t about to entrust the wielding of supreme executive power to anyone based on those odds. I’d sooner let some watery tart throwing a sword make the pick.

                2. I’m not hugely a fan of transposing canine behaviors onto primates, but I agree that there is some likely congruence. The big difference is that dogs don’t have quite as much capacity for self-reflection as we do, and are unable to overcome their genetic and instinctual heritage. We’ve got no similar excuse… While it isn’t the easiest thing in the world, there is no real excuse for allowing your instincts and primal urges to overrule your mind. Which we do, all the damn time.

                3. Call me crazy, but I want to see his data. Because that comment section made me want to go take a shower, and Jim is a right-wing SJW with delusions of competence.

        2. I trust the media on this topic about as far as I can throw Mt. Everest.

          I’m at the point where if someone tries to EAT their TV set, I might figure that, “Well, at least they aren’t watching the damned thing.”

        3. “as far as I can throw Mt. Everest.”
          Don’t underestimate yourself. Faith can move mountains. Of course, its easier with an adequate supply of lithium deuteride.

        4. I have taken to the tactic of “embracing my racism” for much the same reason. It doesn’t mean I treat anyone any different, I still say something as inconsequential as a little bit of skin pigment this way or that, or what part of the world your grandma (for instance) came from is about as reliable as a random dice roll for ascertaining truly important about a person, but since I was going to be called a racist because of my blue eyes, white skin (my ancestry comes almost completely from Norther Europe… I’m so pale, I practically glow) and gender (male) anyway, I might as well just embrace it (all while laughing behind my hand at the racist person calling ME racist on these grounds).

          Now I can say things like “There is only one race… HUMAN!”; and when the assholes and race baiters scream “That’s RACIST!” I can just shrug it off and say yea… so what? You knew I was a snake when you put me in your pocket. Who cares what someone like that thinks of me? Anyone worth while would understand where I’m coming from.

      2. will still be whining “how could his happen?!?!” as the slave collar snaps shut on their necks
        Funny, but that’s the plot of several Gor books. (Especially the first, iirc, as the safe and secure feminist Earth girl gets planet-napped.)

    4. Talks-With-Plants’s Utopia. The woman always talking about man’s intrinsic violent, death-loving way opens her account with blandly discussing “euthanizing” large groups of men.

                1. We can always hope and pray that her posts were nothing more than a brilliantly executed parody and that she realized the 2016 campaign and subsequent events exceeded parody.

                  Sadly, I think she was sincere. I much prefer a superlative satirist over a sad nut job.

    5. It is the rhetoric of most “revolutionary” movements. But you are right about the feminists — they want to smash and burn. More than that, we are NOT the kinder, gentler sex and anyone who has ever been in a public middle school with girls would know it.

      1. Well other females, anyway. When I was in HS/JH, all that occurred in the locker room / “behind the curtain”, so to speak. Heaven forbid it should occur in front of the boys & teachers. “Angelic faces everyone.”

  4. So, I am starting to see the patterns that Lenin has laid down in other more current revolutions and wannabe revolutionaries. Smash, destroy, lay waste, rebuild in their image. There can be a few times where laying waste and rebuilding is the better solution. Changing our current situation doesn’t need the scorched earth approach that they are advocating. Another book that’s going to need to end up on my bookshelf and soon I think.

    1. You should throw some Eric Hoffer on that reading list, as well. He’s an enormously underrated philosopher, likely because the man wasn’t an ivory-tower pedant.

    2. It’s one thing to lay waste to an enemy, then attempt to rebuild (in your image). There you have a built-in animosity.

      To lay waste to your own, then attempt to rebuild demonstrates that you don’t really see them as your neighbors/brothers.

        1. It would be amusing to observe, were they not planning on “going at it” in among the ruins of our own civilization…

          1. Can’t they see how horrible things would be when our civilization is destroyed? Of course, if they destroy our civilization, so that they can be in charge of the ruins, that’s awful but understandable.

            1. Well, there’s the rub: For them, those “horrible things” are what they want, much the way the Mongols wanted to turn much of the settled agricultural areas they conquered into pasture for their animals. Thousands of years worth of work, terracing and building irrigation qanats that made deserts bloom… And, the Mongols saw no point to it all, choosing to bring back the desert wastes. Because they were more comfortable in those…

  5. Tell me how this isn’t classism in its most basic?
    Well, the whole foundation of Marx IS classism. Period.

    What happens if we get into a budget crunch and funds have to be cut for healthcare?
    Well, in the true communism you won’t need that filthy capitalist lucre. Because … reasons.
    But it certainly means we won’t need to worry about budgets and shutdowns. *breaks into a bad parody of Tomorrow*

      1. Oh no, you can’t say “miracle” because there will be no religion either. Remember, it is that erosion which gets slower and slower with each passing generation of proletariat state holding down — boot on the neck — the bourgeois and non-believers. Damn those scientists who learned how to quell erosion. We’ll just have to have another revolution because this generation of socialists aren’t true socialists. So we just have to try again and hold the boot down harder this time.

    1. The usual response I hear is ‘make the rich pay for it’. Which often implies ‘rich’ to mean ‘anyone who makes more than me’, and demonstrates a lack of economic understanding– eventually those ‘rich’ are going to run out of money, and eventually is likely to come sooner rather than later at the rate many want to spend it.

      1. But make it so that “the rich” can’t deduct all state taxes anymore and the “soak the rich” types whine like jet engines. Hrmm. Fishier than a carpnado, that.

      2. A close reading, with proper articulation of concepts, reveals that the rich run out of money at exactly the time that the threshold of “rich” lowers, as it inevitably will, far enough to include … moi?

        No, this cannot be! It’s all a mistake! If only Comrade Schiff knew!

        1. Some are in flat out denial: they insist that poverty turns on what your neighbor has. Telling them that’s not poverty, it’s envy.

          1. Yep. That goes back to one of the complaints people pushed about repealing internet title 2. “My neighbor shoulder be able to get faster or better internet by paying more”

      3. Yeah, I’ve had a, um, discussion (paraphrased herebelow) with a true-believer socialist… his definition was “the workers own the means of production.”

        So I asked: Where did they get those means of production?
        Socialist: They will take it from the owners.
        Me: How is that not theft?
        Socialist: The workers built it, it belongs to them.
        Me: Who paid for it??
        Socialist: That doesn’t matter.
        Me: If the means-of-production don’t already exist, where will the workers get them? Since there’s no capital in this system with which to build.
        Socialist: They’ll take it from the owners.

        And round and round we went. Fundamentally, socialism needs an initial source to steal from, and even a true believer couldn’t find a better answer.

        Socialism isn’t a political system; it’s literally a state religion.

        1. Well, yes, they sorta do own the “means” of production (well, the labor involved anyhow) but the best way for many is to “sell” that means to someone else who will lower your overhead, take over much of the paperwork, headaches, and have the ability to walk away and take your means elsewhere. When “the Workers” own it all they have the annoying tendency to not let you walk away.
          A system so great you have to use force to keep people from escaping it.

        2. There is the Crux of the issue with the labor theory of value. The influence of capital whether a hammer and anvil or computer an often have just as much if not more effect on outcomes. Take a computer and scanner vs scribes. One person with a computer and scanner will do easily more work copying manuscripts than 100 scribes. And it is not difficult to make the former require less skill. So the output has increased hundredfold. But that is not due to worker improvement but tools. Tbh a 90/10 split of the increase between the procurer of the tech and operator respectively is more than fair.

        3. “But nobody owns it as nobody has even invented it. And it if they invent it, they own it, and KNOW IT WILL BE STOLEN FROM THEM… so why invent it?”

          “But that’s Not Fair!”

          “Yes it is. You want it, YOU invent it. Of course, it will taken away from you.”

          “Not fair!”

          “Oh, so you’re AGAINST socialism now?”

          “Ye.. No… whu…. WAAAAAAAAHHH!!!”

        4. Yep and doesn’t that socialist’s commentary sound like it was lifted straight out of Atlas Shrugged (the antagonists who wanted to take from Dagny Taggart, Hank Reardon, etc?)

      4. “Share the wealth!” I’ll start believing those who advocate for it in government really believe it when they start doling out their personal wealth and not creating foundations to collect money from others. As for the economics of the so-called redistribution they talk about, you’re right. They have clue zero about how economics work. They also don’t understand if you take away the reward for working hard and for innovating, most will stop working (or they will stop sharing the results of their work)

        1. Well, those people are evil. How selfish can you be to refuse to help $group just because you’re not getting anything out of it? We’re trying to have a society here. We’ll just have to take control of their assets if they can’t be trusted to function in one.


        2. when they start doling out their personal wealth
          And, of course, the “robber barons” did that with their foundations. They built them with their own money and endowed all sorts of great things for their fellow citizens to enjoy.

          Then they became “publicly minded” without the autocratic direction of their founders, and turned into those “foundations” you so rightly disparage.

          So, yay, for “capitalism” and “robber barons”! BOOOO for the commies!

          (Oh, second example: Musk and SpaceX. Yes, he’s taking some funding from the gov’t [mostly via contracts to actually deliver a good or service]. But he has a crapload of money, and he decided to use it to advance some great ventures. And so we’re back in space! Hooray for “capitalism” again!)

        3. More than a decade ago, before one of my roleplaying sessions, the players and I got into a discussion of health care. In the course of it, I said that the value of human life is finite. One of my players was horrified and couldn’t imagine how anyone could think something so monstrous. I pointed out to him that he owned a large flat-screen TV, something like four or five feet in diagonal, which represented quite a lot of money back then; and that there were charities that would feet a starving African child for a year for a hundred or two. So clearly he valued his ability to watch television more than he did the lives of a dozen or more children in a distant country. He reacted by confessing to hypocrisy, but I didn’t notice that he changed his lifestyle to eliminate luxuries in favor of spending money on something with infinite value.

          What struck me about this was that “value” does not mean, to certain people, “what I personally value,” as measured by how they spend their money, time, effort, or passion; it’s a purely abstract statement of obligations—which, by and large, fall on other people. It’s kind of like saying you believe in the sanctity of marriage while having a series of affairs and/or one-night stands.

          As for taking away rewards, I refer you to Part II, Chapter X of Atlas Shrugged, which contains the story of the Twentieth Century Motor Company after it adopted an industrial policy of assigning work by successful performance but pay by claims of need. It’s a brilliant miniature dystopia. Of course, the author grew up in the Soviet Union under Lenin.

  6. A recent conversational throwaway reminded me of how deeply Lenin’s view has penetrated the American subtext: A second order female acquaintance of my wife, with whom I was riding along in the vehicle along with several others, was chattering about her travels somewhere or the other and said “Of course they’re not Communists; they’re Socialists”, and while biting my tongue to stop from shouting “It’s the Same Thing, Woman!” I thought of how hard Lenin worked to make that same distinction, and how the difference Lenin proposed was basically whether you kill them all right away, or wait a bit.

        1. With one you can have a suspicion as to your danger based on your attributes. The other it depends on who is envious of you today and what power they wield.

    1. As Amanda points out, Lenin was on the “kill them all right away” side of the argument. However, when the peasantry and the workers who aren’t sufficiently revolutionary to join the ruling Proletariat decide that there’s insufficient difference between the old bourgeois dictatorship and the new Proletarian one, you wind up generating resistance. Even if it’s only passive resistance and lip service. That was the fatal disease that felled the USSR.

      Less bloodthirsty people, noting how much resistance Lenin got, go for trickery, deceit, and gradualism and try to boil the frog until they think they have the upper hand. Then the mask comes off. Whether it’s the violent revolutionary Socialism or the Fabian variety, the end is the same;

  7. it is more important than ever that we know what their handbook says and understand it even better than they do.

    Fortunately, this is not difficult.

  8. On the subject of health care, I’m reminded of the current push to have “universal health care” for all people in California (including “undocumented workers”). The most conservative estimates say that it will cost about twice the state’s current budget (just for the health care, so you’d have to double your revenue, assuming you don’t want things like roads, schools, police, etc). It’s hilarious listening to the Leftists spinning like tops trying to explain why, this really IS feasible, and we can totally do it, and it won’t bring the state to bankruptcy, and in fact is going to save a bunch of money (presumably by switching to GEICO for their car insurance).

    Part of me wonders if they might try to do it anyway, but I’m skeptical that even California can manage to borrow enough money for this particular project. Investors are capable of looking at something and saying, “They’ll never pay that back.”

    1. As an increasingly reluctant citizen of the Glorious Bear Republic, one math note: If the health care bit is twice the current budget, so you need to triple your budget to cover what you are already doing plus the new “VA-Hospital-for-All” expenditures.

      And that ‘s ignoring the existing deficit being run, which is a non-trivial amount in the Glorious Bear Republic these days, what with $2B high speed farm trains, avoiding fixing potholes and such, and of course the cost of #Resistance.

      1. I know; the “double your budget” bit was assuming that California was going to cut out all other government functions and just become a 164,000 square mile charity hospital.

        1. oh, I once spent an enjoyable interminable evening sitting with a girlfriend in the ER of New Orleans “Charity Hospital” (became LSU Medical Center, but still served as the charity hospital) and can imagine the whole state as such.
          Stupidly many of those wanting Single Payer do so because they hate using the charity hospitals (all now gov’t run) and think if the gov’t runs them all they’ll get Ochner and Mayo care for free instead of the gov’t run free they get now.

            1. because the left has worked all their lives to make them dumber than ox, otherwise they’d know the wool was being pulled over their eyes.
              The left needs stupid people because that is where most of their votes come from.

          1. Yep. “I want the best care” “sign here” “I dun wanna pay. Waaaah”

            You will get the lowest common denominator. Any monopoly goes that way. Add in the govt belief that they can dictate costs by Fiat and pay docs like burger flippers and you’re not in a good direction.

            1. Sad thing is, once you get past that BS that system has some great doctors in those professors. My aunt hated going there simply because she was a racist wench, but two of the specialists she needed for her MS were teaching there. She preferred to go to Independence or Houma, because less blacks.

              1. You get two levels. Some docs are there because they want to help and do well. Others are the ones that can’t get jobs in four states because their medical license was pulled. The Admin side tends to be the killer. “Just fudge the books. It doesn’t matter if they die as long as my metrics are good.”

    2. In fairness, a good chunk of the revenue needed was postulated to come from legitimate sources. For instance, the Feds pay a big chunk of change to the states for healthcare, and this is to be routed into the state single-payer system. All employers in California are currently required to provide their employees with health insurance, and the money currently spent on this was also to be routed into the state single-payer system.

      However, the estimate I read noted that this still had a shortfall of anywhere from $100-$150 billion out of the total $400 billion required.

      1. Yeah, but you still have to think about where that money comes from — the taxpayer. That’s what folks aren’t considering. If you want such programs, they have to be paid for. That means taxes will increase, whether personal or business. If business, that increase will be passed on to the customer. so, it comes from my pocket and yours.

      2. Apparently at least some of the medicare money already is. Charge feds the max allowable and use it to pay for insurance. At least how was explained to me.

    1. There is a very simple way to have cheap, easy healthcare. Set your standard of care to 1945.

      On a serious note, fixing the pharma cluster would do a great amount of good. Most of the cheap healthcare comes because companies can overcharge the US and take the lesser profit from price control. Remove that and you will see much less investment.

      1. Have you ever set down to look at what is billed to insurance VS what insurance pays & what extra insurance says you should pay (deductible, percentage, copay) VS what is left over that by contract with the insurance the hospital has to “deduct” or wave? Same thing with any medical professional dealing with insurance, but really stands out with an $85,000 hospital bill (FYI, did not count physician costs)? Also technically times 2, but surgeries were 3 years apart (there are 2 hips after all). We actually asked if ANYONE actually paid that amount (Total BILLED to insurance was about 100 grand). Answer, no. Essentially they have “advisors” for those without insurance to assist with negotiate down to actual costs (don’t know what that would have been, didn’t apply to us). The rest the hospital can then show as “non-recoverable debt” they write off on taxes! This is from our local hospital that “technically” is “non-profit” or “not for profit” (not sure which under current corporate situation). Yes, there is a difference.

        1. Oh I’ve seen it plenty. The reason the sticker price is so high is that insurance and govt pay by percentage. Trying to not lose shirt.

          And ya, I’ve seen the cash discount. Mercy hospital down here slices 40% off for it

          1. 40%???? My local monopolistic health care provider (thanks — in part — to Obamacare regulations, the local hospital now essentially owns all providers in the county) the “uninsured client” discount runs an admitted 55% — meaning there’s no telling what the actual discount might be, because all insurance coverage declares a discount odd list price for “preferred provider” or similar persiflage.

            Higher education has a similar scam going. List price for a year at Harvard may be $66,900 but the average actual price paid $18,277 (http://www.collegecalc.org/colleges/massachusetts/harvard-university/). Scholarships, grants, educational assistance and other forms of financing make actual price comparisons very difficult.

              1. And then I run across occasional people insisting they can’t get discounts if they pay cash because they’ve been told charging non-insurance customers differently would be fraud. And this is on a relatively sane forum, not one of the ultra-left places I hang out due to perhaps unwisely shared hobbies, so I’m not quite sure what’s going on, but I hope they get things sorted out.

                1. There probably are cases where it’s true. This is for Mercy in AR and OK. It’s identified for those without insurance so it’s probably a case of “properly” telling facts when recording.

                2. Those are the kind of people whom you need to back up and run across a second or even third time. 😉

                  I think what they are processing is that certain government plans — Medicare, Medicaid, I forget/don’t care — have restrictions to prevent providers from discriminatory charges, setting fees for the government coverage as a kind of loss leader then hitting patients with extra charges. I could be wrong because it is an area which I view as the fiscal equivalent of legislating pi equal to 3.25.

          2. There’s a thing called Payer Mix, which pretty much drives the bus for hospital charges:

            If you have 1/10th of your patients which don’t pay one darn cent for services delivered to them, another 3/10ths of your patients are Medicaid, which pays on the order of 80% of your hospital’s actual costs for services, another 3/10ths of patients under Medicare, which pays around 90-ish% of actual costs, (yep, both pay less than cost, and the hospital has no choice but to accept it), that last 3/10ths of patients that are commercially insured have to make up the difference between all those patients paying less than the hospitals actual costs and the amount of margin the hospital needs to make improvements and expansions and stay an operating concern.

            And when the hospitals contract with The Insurance Co. says insurance will pay 40% of the hospitals charges, those list charges have to be set pretty darn high.

            This also means when someone walks in as a cash payer, they get a lot knocked off just for the fact that the hospital doesn’t have to go through any govt or commercial payor claim processes at all.

            1. Very well aware. And tbh I was under impression caid was even worse reimbursement wise. And they keep narrowing care types until it becomes trivial to reject because you said a trip instead of a fall.

              Most of my experience has been with the 911 side of things. The ALS upcharge I have always found stupid. One of the places you find procedures done for billing vs necessity because one means you get paid, other you don’t.

        2. As everyone notes, most of those “high medical care costs” aren’t real costs.

          And the best way to give us back a really great medical care system in this country would be to remove all the mandated baloney and the weird disincentives/incentives* from gov’t regulation, and let people pay for their own care. Offer up a true insurance market, and offer up a savings account market to help people save for their own care. Then provide a charity setup for the indigent.

          (* One of those weird disincentives is the 2% of AGI floor on deducting medical costs for your taxes.)

          1. Yep. And also to stop spending every effort possible to look after drug addicts and such who are going to go back and do it again. Sure, don’t let them die, but don’t try to fix everything. Everyone has the right to go to hell in the way of their choice, but I shouldn’t have to pay to make their journey slower. In terms of resources used, people with a high ratio of tattoos to teeth consume more than 50% of it, though they are maybe 10% of population.

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