The Socialist Lifeboat Game: You Row While The Rest of Us Fish For Red Herring

Recently, yours truly has taken what, on extremely casual review,  might be characterized as “his usual hard-line stance” against the incessant whining produced by what I’ll, today, refer to as the “children of socialism”.  By outward appearance, of course, the “children” I’m talking about here happen to be actual adults; though, you’d never know it by talking with them.

Of course, I’m a only a little bit sympathetic to those who might, in a knee-jerk fashion, misconstrue the use of phrases such as “incessant whining” (or, perhaps even, “defect of character”) as a demonstration of a lack of compassion.  After all, that interpretation would require the reader to completely disregard the clearly stated objective of trying to develop an understanding of a critical social problem and, one might hope, useful, practical, rational, and moral responses to to that problem.

But that, naturally enough, is what the socialist discourse is all about.  This is a world, after all, that they generally describe as a single, fixed, and finite “pie”; a place of the “zero-sum” game of winners and losers villains and victims; and in which the average schlub (or “prole”) would have difficulty figuring out which foot to put his shoes on without the “help” of a knowledgable and compassionate elite.

In effect, the “socialist world” is one in which the “masses” must, of necessity,  be treated as children and, when properly managed, will ensure the production of a culture of dependent “children” only.  And, as might be expected, survival in this concocted “lifeboat game” is almost always urgently framed in response to the plight of the poor, hapless children produced by such a system.  Not that the argument requires actual children to be at risk, as virtually any class of erstwhile citizen can generally qualify.  (Examples provided on request.)

Now, I’d be the last man on earth to counter such an argument with assertions that the world is utterly without villains and victims, or that the poor deserve no compassion whatsoever, or, stranger still, that by the very logic of the secular-socialist church of evolution itself that the weak must be allowed to die, if only for the betterment of the species. 

And, if you consider that last notion as hyperbole, take just an hour or two to read up on notable progressive socialists (and eugenics proponents) such as Margaret Sanger, George Bernard Shaw, H.G. Wells, Woodrow Wilson, Theodore Roosevelt,  John Maynard Keynes, Linus Pauling and, lest we forget, Adolf Hitler.  For the socialist elite, a “final solution” is always the best solution to the “lifeboat game”.

In point of fact, the loud keening (or, dare I say, “incessant whining”) of supposed compassion “for the children” from the committed socialist has always been merely a red herring.  Oh, not that “the children’s” plight isn’t, by either socialist design or the mere cruelty of nature, actually dire.  It may well be.  Rather, they would fuel their own hunger for power with the furious emotional outrage  that they would engender in us against the injustice evident in God’s (or their own) creation.

For, it is God that, in the end, they are truly angry with.  And who can blame them, right?  What kind of supposed “merciful” God would actually create such a place where his children are permitted to suffer so?  At the moment, I’m inclined to leave that particular theological debate for another day, but let it suffice to say that your answer to that question will, in all likelihood, tend to determine the manner in which you, yourself, respond to the suffering common to the so-called “human condition”.

For myself, as always, the appropriate response to the “human condition” will tend to be personal, rather than institutional.  I believe that individual liberty is a condition granted to each – by our Creator – for the singular purpose of enabling, fostering, and encouraging a personal, individual, uncoerced reconciliation with that Creator.  As a natural extension of that belief, I must, as surely as God must, allow for my fellow “children” to choose some path other than reconciliation, all the while protecting their natural (i.e. “God-given”) right to do so, as hard and unpleasant as that often is to do.

Of course, I have the benefit of not seeing life as a “zero sum” game.  I have reason to believe that God’s mercy will, in some form or other, reward our humility, perseverance, and faith.  Those with an opposing point of view would (and, historically speaking, have tended to)  call that a clinical delusion and, surely, cause for involuntary committment to state-ordained psychiatric treatment.  But, then, these are the same folks who would (and appear to be well down the road in their effort to) insist that we play their little “lifeboat game”.

To quote Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, one who has more than a bit of relevant experience with the subject, “But if I were asked today to formulate as concisely as possible the main cause of the ruinous revolution that swallowed up some 60 million of our people, I could not put it more accurately than to repeat: “Men have forgotten God; that’s why all this has happened.

As for the plight of “the children”, I’ll say this:  Do as your own heart and conscience would have you do, short of forcing me to follow suit.  That said, I do, nonetheless, happen to recognize that there are circumstances when the “collective we” must intervene to prevent irreparable harm to an innocent victim.  I’m fine with that, really. 

I merely suggest that we treat “actual children” as children and “actual adults” as adults.  That should serve to prevent most of the confusion on the subject.  While we’re at it, we might just expect those adults to put a little more effort into rowing the “lifeboat”, perhaps even building one of their own.  I’d be glad to help them.  Besides, I think we’ve landed enough red herring.

Harry Tuttle



6 responses to “The Socialist Lifeboat Game: You Row While The Rest of Us Fish For Red Herring

  1. Good post. The tricky part comes at the end of your post. Defining those times when the “collective we” must intervene, and how far. I guess all argument about the role of government has to do with this question.

    • M:

      I would rather, I think, live in a society “good enough” to permit an individual response to each and every injustice. That’s an ideal, really, for which (some, at least, of) our nation’s Founders had great hope.

      Living here, as we do, in the less-than-ideal “real world”, we are faced with more pragmatic challenges. This is a world where I risk arrest if I protect my neighbor’s house and where – in many parts of the world, at least – I risk arrest if I even attempt to protect myself, my family, or my property. This is world in which your pastor or priest risks arrest if they don’t report your potentially criminal confession and where parents risk arrest if they spank their children. This is a world in whiich the value of an endangered species is, apparently, greater than that of an unborn child.

      This, unfortunately, is a world in which the “road to hell is paved with good intentions”. While it seems that I must, however reluctantly, concede that collective action may sometimes be a necessary response to the injustices of acts of war or of criminal behavior, the underlying purpose of that response (for me, at least) should be the preservation of human life and human liberty….not of human comfort or human pride.

      So, yeah, I don’t know exactly where the “bright line” answer to that question is, necessarily, but I have a pretty good idea of it’s general vicinity.


  2. Another means of silently lessening the inequality of property is to exempt all from taxation below a certain point, and to tax the portions of property in geometrical progression as they rise.
    T. J. 1785

    • HDW:

      Mr. White lives! Wow. TJ the Progressive. Who’d have known. Good catch. But, you’re point being….

      Actually, I personally have “zero” qualms about this form of “progressive taxation”: No tax on wages or homestead. Moderate taxes on “income” (as traditionally defined), corporate/business property, non-agricultural imports, non-agricultural consumption. On (family) farms? I’ll have to think about that one.


    • “They” are coming after you next.

  3. It really is scary. Basically, we can be arrested for anything if certain people think it necessary.

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