Video

Access granted to Truth Devotees only.

In socialism you are "given" everything: food, housing, clothing and medical treatment–just as you were if you happened to be a slave on the Old Plantation. And all you have to do in return, of course, is the work–without any chance to make a profit–just as you did if you happened to be a slave in the Old Plantation.
Summary
This chapter is preceded by a quote from a letter, sent in to Muhammad Speaks, the official publication of the Black Muslims, by a White reader. It contains this phrase, speaking of poverty: "If everyone had the same amount of money and opportunity, there would be no problem."

The chapter begins, however, with a discussion about how capitalism is actually the answer to poverty. The author quotes Communist John Pepper, writing all the way back in 1928, and complaining about the prosperity of Blacks, because they were "closely tied up with… white capitalists." He mentions that Black banks in America at that time carried an annual volume of over $100,000,000, and that Black insurance companies had assets over $3,000,00.

The author responds by saying that

The reason can only be that in America–in 1924–the capitalism was there which made it possible for blacks–and whites–to advance… And if this was already the case forty years ago, imagine what it would be today if, instead of less and less capitalism, we had gotten more and more.

He then points out that in his own day, "American Negroes in 1963 had a total income–after taxes–of $21.9 billion–and they don't have this in Ghana." He follows that with figures about how many Blacks in America owned homes and cars, and even earned pay "higher than that of executives in England and continental Europe."

The author next suggests that capitalism is based on individualism, and the idea that "man is an end in himself." That "the schools, the theaters, the subways, and the stores" are all about man. Conversely, he suggests that racism can only really exist under some form of socialism, because in a capitalist society customers are free to take their business to one's competitor, be those customers Blacks or friends of Blacks, etc. And, under capitalism, the businessman knows he has to hire the best man or "the best man will go to work for somebody else."

So the point in short is that even if a man does decide to be a racist in a system of capitalism–real capitalism–he can't force his ideas on others, simply because–since in real capitalism the government stays out of business and business stays out of the government–he just hasn't the force to do it… So if you are an individualist who happens to be Negro–luckily living in capitalism–you simply feel for a moment that most wholesome of emotions: pity–for the racist–and promptly bid him goodbye, with the sure knowledge that since you are an individualist, he, as a racist, does not deserve to know you."

At this point, we are reminded, with a quote, that the Communists are just as much against prosperous Blacks as anyone else.

A great supporting quote is here provided from Manning Johnson, a Black man who spent ten years as a Communist. He discusses how the Communists call prosperous Blacks "[tools] of the white imperialists" and call them "[enemies] of the Negro masses." He says that they hate the example they set for other Blacks in showing them how "to take advantage of the countless opportunities of the free enterprise system."

The author then mentions how nice it would be to know exactly where "our Negro leaders" stand pertaining to capitalism, referring to MLK and Bayard Rustin, but that they never mention it directly, instead spending all of their time talking about "police brutality and some sort of revolution."

We learn, in passing, that the Pasadena Police Department identified Bayard Rustin as "a sexual pervert."

We also learn more from the mouths of many of the people and organizations that he and MLK associated with, including the League for Industrial Democracy, which describes itself as "a militant educational movement which challenges those who would think and act for a 'new social order based on production for use and not for profit.'"

MLK's chief-of-staff and friend, Wyatt Tee Walker, is on record saying that "If the Negro is to be given equality, our whole economy will have to be changed–probably to some sort of Socialism."

The author takes the opportunity here to point out that

In socialism you are "given" everything: food, housing, clothing and medical treatment–just as you were if you happened to be a slave on the Old Plantation. And all you have to do in return, of course, is the work–without any chance to make a profit–just as you did if you happened to be a slave in the Old Plantation.

But in capitalism you are "given absolutely nothing. The whole point to capitalism is… simply that if the government does what it should–keeping criminals under control–he will create everything he needs by himself, because he is by nature a creator.

Here, the author points out many of the groups who have come to America, experienced prejudice, and eventually made their way into mainstream society: the Jews, Germans, Italians, Swedes, Poles, Greeks, Chinese, and Irish. All suffered, all endured, and all eventually integrated without the need for "some sort of Socialism."

They all had "the benefit of the free economy of capitalism" and "were not automatically frozen into serfdom by some bureaucrat's whim."

He suggests that perhaps the socialism is more important to Rev. Walker, "chief-of-staff for Dr. Martin Luther King," than in the welfare of Blacks.

Of course, MLK himself, in Stride Toward Freedom, wrote about his own reading of Karl Marx and his feeling that "though modern American capitalism has greatly reduced the gap through social reforms, there was still a need for a better distribution of wealth."

MLK also says, in that same document, that as he read Marx, he was concerned about "superfluous wealth." The author points out that "He doesn't say whose superfluous wealth worries him, or how much wealth is superfluous. He doesn't say who gets to decide…"

The author continues

He doesn't say why it is that the more social reforms that are carried out, the poorer and poorer the Negro become–according to the Negro leaders themselves.

Analysis
You can see the Communist origins behind the concept of a "universal basic income." Sadly, this is seriously being considered by cities and states here in the United States. In fact, a quick internet search shows that the Marxist roots are not even being mentioned in the discussion on the major sites, just that it "holds tremendous promise for alleviating not only the financial burden of poverty, but also the damaging ripple effects of economic insecurity on health and family."[1]

Interestingly, the linked article on universal basic income opens by discussing MLK's calls for it:

[T]he solution to poverty is to abolish it directly by a now widely discussed measure: the guaranteed income.

This is, of course, an open call for the redistribution of wealth.

With the author's comments about the proper way to deal with racists–ignore them and go about your own business of being prosperous–we are reminded of the comments provided in The Mormon Angle, back on chapter 9 of this book, and how that incident was handled the same way. Since I do not have the right to force you to believe or do as I wish, neither do you have the right to do those things to me, and we both go about our business. This is true freedom.

Also in this chapter, we read about a discussion held at a meeting of The Leadership Training Institute for Civil Rights Activists, which was attended by members of CORE and HARYOU, where one member says "Capitalism is based on having a group you can exploit." This is a Communist distortion, and it is completely false. Capitalism is merely the ability for the common people to own property, and to control its use! Are there problems in our current "capitalist" society? Yes! However, you will find that the abuse is due to other things, like government regulation and interference, monopolies, and secret organizations. In fact, America hasn't experienced true capitalism for over one hundred years due to these things. This is not like Commies arguing that "true Communism" has never ben tried, though, because America did have true capitalism for a time, and the people prospered.

At the end of this chapter, the author discusses MLK's comments about desiring some form of partial Marxism. He points out that "when you mix slavery and freedom all you get is more slavery; and that if a man is only half-free he is also all slave… that there is and can be no such thing as pure collectivism… that if you start out with Marxism, you must end up with a 'mixed economy.'" This is an interesting point to ponder, considering the capitalist form of Communism currently practiced in China. It is, of course, a controlled capitalism, meaning that everything still belongs to the government, but that the people are allowed the illusion of ownership of property as long as they remain good comrades. Still, it is an effective means of motivation because capitalism works.


The Mormon Angle

The discussion about starting out with nothing under capitalism and then creating everything is demonstrated in excellent form by the history of Nauvoo, Illinois. It was a swampy area that no one else cared about. The Saints were violently driven out of their former locations, having their farms burned and so forth, and literally started out with virtually nothing. They drained the swamp, built farms and houses, and generally improved the situation, until it became a primary location for commerce along the Mississippi River. In just a few short years they were very prosperous.

Eventually, they were driven out again, leaving behind their farms, businesses, schools, etc, all standing as though they were going to be right back. A group of French Socialists, called the Icarians, moved in and took over everything. After a short time, they were writing back to France, calling for financial support. This is a well-documented fact that you can read about here.[2] The Icarians failed. What happened to the Saints? They went into an empty desert and created one of the largest cities in America.

In Stride Toward Freedom, MLK says that in the Kingdom of God there will be a synthesis of collectivism and individual enterprise. There is actually some truth in this, even to the point of some confusing the United Order with Communism, falsely. The main difference? Under the United Order, people still have complete ownership of their property and willingly allow it to be distributed to help others, and, having complete control, also have the ability to reclaim that property and leave at any time.[3] There is no force involved. And that is a huge difference.


References:

[1] What Is Universal Basic Income, and Should Everyone Get It? (howstuffworks.com) <https://money.howstuffworks.com/universal-basic-income.htm, accessed 2021-02-16.>

[2]
Excerpt: John Taylor on socialism and French philosophy (mormontextsproject.org) <https://mormontextsproject.org/2014/04/18/john-taylor-on-socialism/, accessed 2021-02-16.>

[3]
The United Order Vs. Communism (latterdayconservative.com) <https://www.latterdayconservative.com/articles/the-united-order-vs-communism/, accessed 2021-02-016.>
Bonus Content

Access granted to Truth Devotees only.

© 2021 Illuminotes.org