Monday October 3rd 2022 | Issue No. 15
The Rachel Report
Canyon County Republican State Youth Chair
Past Rachel Reports
The Rachel Report Issue # 14
The Rachel Report Issue #14
The Rachel Report Keep fighting liberty-lovers! Let’s Keep Idaho, Idahome! Rachel Hazelip “Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom, must, like men, undergo the fatigue of supporting it.”…
The Rachel Report Issue # 13
The Rachel Report Issue #13
The Rachel Report The Republican Party spoke at the Convention and it sounded like the “sweet bells of liberty.” Let’s Keep Keepin’ Idaho, Idahome! For Idaho, Rachel Hazelip “America was…
This Months Liberty Gem
As a point of clarification, Socialism, Marxism, and Communism are indeed individual political/economic theories that differ ever so slightly from one another. The operative word there however, is “slightly.” Marxism and Communism derive from the same school of thought-Socialism. For the purpose of this email, I will be using the three fairly interchangeably; however I do recognize and agree that if we want to split hairs, there are differences between them.
As a secondary note, when I refer to “Liberalism” or “Classical Liberalism,” I am referring to the political theory which is based on the rights of the individual, equality, liberty, and government that derives power from the consent of the governed. I am not referring to “liberal” ideology.
Though sayings are NOT my strong suit (ask my family), one of my favorite adages is “you cannot hit a target you cannot see” or “there is no beating an invisible enemy.” Applied to ideas or policies, this means essentially, to properly combat something, you must first be able to conceptualize or define it. Perhaps the best way to understand Socialism is to define it in contrast with Capitalism; as it was for the purpose of countering and replacing Capitalism that Socialism was conceptualized. Capitalism has certain defining characterizes, the three most fundamental however, are:
1. Means of production (labor, land, and capital) are privately owned and controlled,
2. Markets are the mechanism of production input and output, profit, and determining consumption, investment, and use of surplus
Socialism antithesizes every aspect of Capitalism. Karl Marx, the “Father of Communism,” should also be called the “Father of Socialism.” Though he inherited socialist thought as a young man, it was through his interpretation of Capitalism that gives us what we consider Socialism in contemporary terms. The four determining characteristics of socialism are:
1. Public ownership of labor and property,
2. A planned economy and classless society,
3. No competition and limited choices of consumer goods and services
4. Pricing mechanism of “markets.”
Austrian economist and historian Ludwig von Mises, best known for his revolutionary work on Classical Liberalism and examination of Communism versus Capitalism, most accurately stated of the Marxist school of thought: “the world is split today into two hostile camps, fighting each other with the utmost vehemence, Communists and anti-Communists.” That was written by Mises in 1951 yet it remains true today of the Socialist school of thought. Most Americans are of the belief that since the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, Socialism (most commonly ascribed as Communism in the States) is a thing of the past. A Gallup Poll taken in 2021 showed that a staggering 58% of Americans “do not hold negative feelings” regarding Socialism; this is compared to 4% in 1990.
Remember, Socialist schools of thought were the very reason the United States engaged in the Cold War.
For context, nations who have at one point or currently have adopted economic and political socialism are the USSR, Cuba, North Korea, China, Vietnam, and Venezuela to name a few. You’ll notice all of these countries have in common histories of oppression, authoritarianism, despotism, industrial failure, famine, mass death, and in most cases, eventual collapse.
The United States was founded upon principles which naturally included Capitalist economic theory. John Locke, known as the “Father of Liberalism” whose ideas and theories the Founders used in constructing the Land of the Free, stated in 1682 that “every man [had] the right to the fruits of [their] own labor.”
Dear Liberty Lovers,
I am writing this as my plane is touching down in the beautiful United States. It’s always sweet to be back in America… I have one more connecting flight however, until I am back in Idahome. My adventurous spirit loves to travel… there is something so special about traveling to different cultures, seeing new places, and meeting new people. A few of my favorite aspects of travel (besides the food of course… Can I hear an “amen?!”), is 1, meeting the body of Christ all around the world; and 2, talking politics with people who live under different governing structures.
But I have to say… Regardless of where I have traveled around the world…whether it is to a developed or developing nation… I am always all the more thankful for the Land of the Free when returning home after weeks or months away.
This trip, I had the great privilege of traveling to the United Kingdom (England and Northern Ireland), and the Republic of Ireland.
All three countries were unique, culturally rich, beautiful, and are classified as “first world countries.” It was both an interesting and historic time to be in England for the two weeks I was there and I actually happened to be in London when the nation heard that Her Majesty the Queen had passed.
Though it was a sad event, the historian in me felt so blessed to witness first hand one of the most historic events in contemporary British history.
The UK has an interesting governing structure as they are one of the few constitutional monarchies on the planet. Along with that, they are also on a parliamentary system and a unitary state system. Unitary states allocate all power to the central government and create a prime political and economic landscape in which Socialism flourishes (For context, the United States is on the Federal System which means we divide power between the national government and state governments).
For this month’s report, I’d like to share a few things I learned and experiences I had while traveling, within the context of Socialism.
Let’s dive right in.
Socialism has been on my mind a great deal the past few months and I thought there was no better time to write a letter regarding it than right after being in countries that employ it in more than half of their economic, social, and agricultural domestic policies.
In regards to arguing against the adoption of Socialism, many of us freedom lovers are guilty of saying, “look at history. Socialism has never worked before, why would it now?” While this is an accurate statement, it is one I caution against. There is a danger to arguing this…. Is it a true statement? Yes. Absolutely. But is there a caveat? Yes. Why? Well, look at Europe.
Europe is an interesting place… Few places in the world have been ravaged by Communism and Socialism like Europe has. For examples of this, I’d draw your attention to the history of East Berlin, Yugoslavia, and the Baltic States. But… Europe is paradoxical because while their countries, communities, and lands have been plagued by the negative effects of Socialism and Communism… there are also examples of Socialism in the 21st Century in Europe that are thriving. England, Ireland, and Scandinavia are all prime examples of this.
The difference between these examples and historical European Socialism is that most contemporary European states incorporate limited features of Socialism by employing a type which has been commonly referred to as Humane Socialism or Unified Socialism.
Humane or Unified Socialism is unique in that it is not really Socialist; it merely borrows Socialist economic constructs. By this, I mean that true Socialism… the kind rooted in the mid-19th Century and developed by thinkers such as Karl Marx in the 20th Century…rejects any form of Capitalism. This is Socialism’s defining factor.
21st Century European Socialism however, which is seen in Scandinavia and the United Kingdom, is integrative Socialism.
They are Capitalist in wealth creation but Socialist in wealth distribution.
In application, this means that most European states that employ this type of Socialism have largely public labor ownership and an extensive welfare system for which the whole of society pays; which are both typical Socialist constructs. But diverging from the Socialist narrative, many of the same European states have tax rates that are lower or equal to those of the United States. When it comes to wealth creation, they are markedly Capitalist.
This brings us to a term popularized in the United States (arguably) during the 2016 Presidential campaign, “Democratic Socialism.” If you have watched any news in the past six years, you have heard this buzz term. This is the new form of Socialism that is being sold to Americans the past decade.
Anyone who knows me, knows that I struggle with this term. To me, it is illogical and an oxymoron. One of my favorite political philosophers, political scientists, and historians Alexis de Tocqueville once said, “Democracy and socialism have nothing in common but one word, equality. But notice the difference: while democracy seeks equality in liberty, socialism seeks equality in restraint and servitude.” This could not summarize my sentiment on “Democratic Socialism” any better.
However, it is what is being presented to us so to give ourselves a clear target, we need a working definition. The best one I can afford is this: Democratic Socialism makes the means of production collective and socializes wealth distribution while operating under liberal democracy.
The difference between European Unified or Humanitarian Socialism and Democratic Socialism would be class. In Europe, essentially, they “do not want to bite the hand that feeds them” so to speak. In this way, they split from purest Socialist/ Marxist thought…They do not focus on class. Democratic Socialism however, does. It focuses heavily on taxing the wealthy class to redistribute equality (these are the types of policies we are seeing people like Alexandria Ocasio- Cortez and Bernie Sanders touting).
This brings us to the United States.
Acceptance of Democratic Socialism has spread like wildfire throughout the United States the past decade. One of the problems however, is that indoctrination and poor knowledge of history has led to basic misconceptions when defining Socialism in 21st Century America.
Many American’s in today’s world hear the word “Socialism” and they think “social issues” (LGBTQ+, immigration, equity and inclusivism, etc.). That is not what Socialism is, nor is what Democratic Socialism is. At the risk of repeating myself from this month’s Liberty Gem, Socialism is an economic doctrine which in basic terms, rejects private ownership and enterprise and champions public, collective ownership and planning. Socialists argue that other economic doctrines, particularly Capitalism, lead to unequal, unfair, and exploitive concentrations of wealth and power in the hands of the rich while marginalizing what Karl Marx called “the working class.”
Democratic Socialists support ideas such as New Deal- style programs, labor reform and pro-union policy, free public higher education and loan forgiveness, federal job and housing projects, universal healthcare, and most significantly, taxation that closes class gaps (taxing corporations and the rich for social programs and equity).
In recent years, arguably since 2008/2009, we have seen Socialism integrate into American economic, and social spheres in tangible ways. Words like “collectivism,” “equity,” “Democratic-Socialism,” and even “Communism” have become socially accepted and even celebrated terms. To have Socialistic ideas now is to have inclusive and equitable ideas. Socialism has become synonymous with social justice movements. To be against Democratic Socialism now is becoming more and more of an affront to race, gender, and identity.
This brings me to my final point on Socialism in America. Dinesh D’Souza explained his new case study into United States-style Democratic Socialism as, “Divisive Socialism” or “Identity Socialism.”
This new concept of American Socialism is why I hesitate to say, “Socialism has historically never worked before, why do we think it will now?” As a historian, yes, I agree with that. Historical evidence demands we conclude that Socialism not only leads to authoritarianism, extreme poverty, absolute corruption, and desperation; but ultimately it inevitably ends in catastrophic loss of life.
However, we are facing an innovative Socialism in the United States that the world has never seen before. American Divisive or Identity Socialism is the a form of Democratic Socialism which is based on setting one group against another. This is a kind of Socialism that goes beyond Marx’s idea of class divide as seen historically. In America, we are facing divides at every level of society, economy, politics, and identity. It is no longer the proletariat against the bourgeoisie like Marx described it. It is black against white, male against female, heterosexual against homosexual, conservative against liberal, and spiritual against secular.
We are facing division at every level and it is obliterating our very identity as Americans.
But not only are we using baseline Marxist doctrine to create a new political, cultural, and economic structure in our country… We are using Maoism as our implantation mechanism.
I wrote a paper on this during my Sophomore year of college and frankly, my professor thought I was nuts. Then earlier this year, I had the opportunity to hear Dr. James Lindsay speak and he identified the same thing to the audience. I nearly leaped out of my seat. I was so excited. I leaned over to Christina and said, “I’m not crazy!”
During the Cultural Revolution, Mao Zedong identified the “Four Olds” which he believed were destroying China and that he used to implement Communism into society. In other words, the Four Olds were the car used to drive Communism into China. Tell me if this sounds familiar.
The Four Olds are: Old Ideas, Old Culture, Old Customs, and Old Habits.
If we look back over the past decade in America, we can see how the Four Olds have been utilized to usher in a new wave of Socialism in contemporary America.
Old Ideas: revering the Founding Fathers, the nuclear family, equality not equity, fairness not inclusiveness, etc…
Old Culture: cultural and historical monument destruction, vilification of Americanism, etc…
Old Customs: Capitalism, hard work, responsibility, etc…
Old Habits: masculinity, first wave feminism (equality), “American Dream” mentality, etc…
America was established on the very principles that Capitalism derived from.
Historically, we waged the Cold War, from 1947-1991 against the sole cause of Socialism with the singular purpose of eradicating it in as many nations as possible and ensuring Capitalism remained the hegemon is economic policy globally. Those were uncertain and trying years… I know many of you remember the effects of the Cold War and remember the fear that the Soviets created for Americans. I remember both my grandparents and parents’ generations talking about hiding under their tables for bomb drills, fallout shelters, and living with a constant fear of Soviet invasion. The Cold War was not a small thing.
Communism was public enemy number one.
Communism was feared. Communism was hated.
Arguably, one of the most unified periods in American history was during the Cold War. Americans we unified under the collective idea that Communism was not only evil, but would bring about such perilous destruction that decency demanded we intervene in its downfall.
How quickly we forget.
When I was in Europe, I couldn’t help but “poke the bear” so to speak, by getting into some political conversations about government, leadership, Socialism, and the United States’ role in foreign policy.
This led to some incredible conversations (Fun fact, well over 95% of the people I spoke with in England, Northern Ireland, and Ireland all loved President Trump or had family in the States- primarily New York, Baltimore, Detroit, Chicago, or Miami- who support him. Funny, it’s kind of like he had some of the best policies for immigrants and businessman this country has ever known or something like that…).
One of my favorite conversations my sister and I had was with an elderly English woman in the Republic of Ireland about Socialism and what she called “old America.” She complained about the negative impacts the Socialist state has had on her family and explained that the welfare system in the UK is severely lacking. My sister and I explained that unfortunately, the United States has been adopting varying levels of Socialism and that most of us want to stop it. This sparked something in her that was actually beautiful to see as an American citizen. She told us how beautiful America was and how free and unified “old America” was. She said that she as an English woman missed looking to us as a bastion of unity and strength.
For a second, the comment made my heart hurt. Then I was overcome with such pride to be American that I felt tears in my eyes. We’re going to get back to that America, I told her.
She smiled and said “you two remind me of every good thing America used to be.”
We discussed party divisions within the United States and she said “I believe that is a rather new phenomenon in America. You all used to be so united. You were Americans first.”
You were Americans first.
Let that sink in friends. I think it is easy to forget that. We are Americans first.
We tend to break down our political philosophy first: yes, I am a Republican. Yes, I am a conservative. Yes, I am a Lockean. Yes, I am a Classical Liberal if you really want to boil down my political philosophy.
Be first, I am an American.
First I love my God, my family, and my country… this incredible country which affords us our right to love our God and our family before the nation state.
We have that freedom. China doesn’t. Cuba doesn’t. North Korea doesn’t. There… the nation comes first. The collective comes first.
Not here. Not in America.
We are Americans first…before we are our political philosophy.
One of the reasons we have always been the global hegemon is because we have always been so much more than a country. We have been an idea.
An idea that people, when given liberty, can create a prosperous society.
As de Tocquiville stated, freedom and liberty are in direct competition to Socialism. My friends, we cannot have both. Even small amounts of Socialism as seen in Europe are counter to everything we were founded on and everything we have always been.
We have become so far removed as Americans and even modern Europeans from the disastrous effects of Socialism that we have become more accepting of it. But we must not forget that “Socialism is a philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance, and the gospel of envy, [whose] inherent virtue is the equal sharing of misery” (Winston Churchill).
Divisive Democratic Socialism is the enemy we are facing in the greater United States and even our Idahome today.
It’s almost not enough to just study historical Socialism anymore… We need to know this new innovative type that the Left has created the past several decades in this country. For a while after the end of the Cold War, it was sleeping… but the giant has arisen. We are rapidly heading towards a new dawn of a Socialist America my friends. We have to fight it and make certain that it doesn’t consume our state or nation.
We must remain vigilant in identifying it and safeguarding against it so we may remain the same bastion of liberty that we have always been.
Four more hours until I am back in Idahome and I can’t wait!
After a month away from it all, spending time with God in my favorite place… nature… I am so excited to get back to the fight for our state and country! We’ve got work to do friends!
Let’s keep Idaho, Idahome!
“Socialism in general has a record of failure so blatant that only an intellectual could ignore or evade it.” – Thomas Sowell
P.S I took the month to unplug from everything… work demands, political demands… to recharge my batteries that were running a bit low on power. That being said, I am quite behind on emails, texts, and calls so if I have not responded to you, I will be spending the next two weeks getting caught up; but if you have an urgent message or question, please simply contact me again and mark it with ASAP.