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Wednesday, February 3, 2016

I Thought Capitalism was Dead!

What bothers me about education in North America is how it's designed to make people think in a given way: Africans were slaves but Europeans we “indentured servants”; Malcolm X was bad but Martin Luther King was good; Middle Easterners are not ‘white’ but Jesus, who was born there is bizarrely ‘white’…

Children and the less-informed public are indoctrinated in a painfully sinister manner so much so that those who take great initiatives to be autodidactic cringe in horror. I feel sorry for a crowd of young people being indoctrinated in the name of 'education.' Admittedly, there are professions where strict protocols are undeniably imperative. However, in professions where critical thinking is important, being indoctrinated becomes a philosophical and epistemic disaster.

A day after Iowa primaries, David Deming, a professor at the University of Oklahoma (in a somewhat McCathysmic tone and style), wrote a bizarre, polemical Op-Ed criticizing youth attraction to Bernie Sanders' socialist ideas. In a very close-minded, uncritical manner, the good professor wrote:

"Socialism is a dead end. For hundreds of years, it has failed everywhere it's been adopted. The enthusiasm of our youth for the candidacy of Bernie Sanders is a symptom of our failure to educate them, not only in history, government and economics, but also basic morality."

This is an overly simplistic way in which some North American educators rationalize capitalism above socialism and communism. Such a naïve rationale contends that capitalism won in 1989 against socialism and communism. Really? Why are people this credulous? Educational agendas like these make me scared of some western scholars, who allow political emotions to take over their critical faculties. Even my seven-year-old would see that what’s giving the so-called capitalism life are socialist and communist ideas. What I call “keeping the lit on the revolution container!”

Besides, how can a university professor fail to see a difference between human weakness and the practice of an ideology? This example might help! Many African countries have what they call ‘democracy’; however, we know very well that such fake democracies are complete sham because the tribal majority always wins or the leadership rigs elections to stay in power. This is by no means, as Mr. Deming would agree, a failure of democracy as it’s a failure of human weakness in a democratic practice. These leaders win with 90% (even 100% in Ethiopia) and call it ‘democracy!’ Admittedly, Socialism and Communism have their weaknesses just like capitalism; however, why’s the above mentioned rationale not applied to capitalism? “Because we say so!”

But seriously! That killers like Stalin, Pol Pot and other communist leaders, who twisted socialist and communist ideas for personal gratification, are counted as the embodiment of socialism and communism failure is more political than factual. How is it that we don’t attribute the ills committed by capitalists against the poor, who work for them, as a failure or immorality of capitalism? To say that only ideas we don’t like are the ones that are bad and we have to look away from the ills attributable to ideas we like is a bizarre way to claim a moral upper hand.

Marlcolm X, Martin Luther King, Bob and John Kennedy, were not killed in a socialist society! Slavery and Jim Crow were not products of a socialist society! Saying that young people are not taught history and that’s why they embrace socialist ideas of Sanders when we are selective in terms of the history we teach, is bizarre.
Noam Klein has demonstrated in her book, Shock Therapy: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism, how Milton Friedman ideologues of the ‘Chicago School’ stock benefited from the suffering of the poor. This is moral, right?

What’s moral about what capitalists did in Chile with the ‘Chicago Boys?' In South America and Central America, democratically elected leaders were removed because they refused to let capitalist ‘moralists’ exploit the poor.
Any sane human being with a mind and a heart that functionally cares, and who has watched The Corporation (documentary) would think twice about a blanket declaration of morality of capitalism. Mr. Deming should talk to people whose lives have been turned upside down by capitalism. The collapse of the factory building in Bangladesh is a good example. Apartheid in South Africa was supported by capitalist west. The Nazis had an amazing help from American and European corporations. Yet someone has the shameless nerves to talk of the morality of capitalism! Just because you don't experience the ills of capitalism, it doesn't mean they don't exist.

But that’s not the most bizarre and worrying thing about fanatical evangelists of capitalism. They keep on claiming that socialism and capitalism ended in 1989. Really? Any educated man and woman with rational capacity can easily see the fallacy in this kind of purposed way of thinking.

Karl Marx warned against the collapse of capitalism. What do you think capitalists did with Marx’s warning? Did they ignore it? It’s really funny that people ignore socialist and communist ideas that make the supposed capitalist economies survive. To say that what we have now in North America is capitalism is to bury one’s head in the mud. It's to be ignorantce-intixocated!

Are trade unions capitalist ideas? No! They are ways to keep workers from rebelling! Trade unions are socialism-inspired capitalist tools to keep workers in check. In addition, in America, we have food stamp, Medicare, Medicaid, interest rate control, stimulus packages (2008), the infamous ‘New Deal’ and “Corporate Welfare”! In Canada we have employment insurance, universal health care, social assistance, among other things.

These socialist ideas are the things keeping the so-called capitalism from collapsing entirely. They are the lifeline of this socio-capitalist economy being christened as capitalist. Basically, capitalism collapsed in 1920s and 1930s and that collapse was authenticated in 2008 with the stock market crash. What we have is nominal capitalism, a fact that act as a consolation for fanatics of capitalism. The ‘invisible hand’ of Adam Smith is actually visible! We are in a blended economy: Socialism and Capitalism.

Now, this bizarre idea, that making young people embrace socialist ideas is morally challenged is a thinking of a Martian. Some Americans think as if they came from Mars. How does the passion and care Sander exudes qualify as ‘moral failing’ if some Americans weren’t from another planet?

“Socialism isn't so much a legitimate economic system as it is a moral failing. It will always exist because ignorant people will always want something for nothing,” wrote Mr. Deming.

So Canadians, Australians and the European countries with free health care are ignorant! So Germans with free university are ignorant! Thio! So corporations that benefit from government money are ignorant? And this thinking is from a university professor!

First, Sanders cites viable examples that have nothing to do with any moral failings. Why is Mr. Deming stuck in the past with the political failures of people like Stalin? How about the Scandinavian countries, Australia and other Europeans countries? Germany has now declared free university for all! Is this a moral failing? Are they ignorant!

Why are Americans, learned or not, fond of discriminatory imagination? Sanders is only calling for fair treatment of American citizens not hand-outs! When will Americans grow up and remove their heads from the cold war propaganda? It’s actually ignorant to stick to the past as the world is moving ahead. It’s 2016 not 1900s! The likes of Deming will continue to stress themselves given the fact that they're stuck in the past! The anger inherent in the Op-Ed leaves a lot to be desired.

And what's immoral about helping kids get public education free of charge or at a minimal cost? What’s the "moral failing" in saying that all Americans need free health care? It’s really bizarre that Americans see caring for others as a ‘moral failing.’ What happened to America?

To say that young people are embracing Sanders’ socialist ideas because of failure of education is right in a way. These youngsters may have seen the way they’ve been indoctrinated so they've started to fish out the lie. They’ve seen through the lie which they’ve been taught for generations. And no wonder these kids are taught by the likes of David Deming!