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Socialism - the pitch and the purpose, Part 10

Lead Summary
By Jim Thompson
HCP columnist

Continued from last week.

Most of us have that in-law who causes us to roll our eyes. In my case, it is my brother-in-law.

However, he said one thing recently, pertaining to our life on earth, that was profound: “We are all renters here.” Indeed, “we are all renters here” captures the fleeting, transitory condition of our lives on earth.

Monarchies, socialism, communism, fascism and capitalism are all sold as ways for us to have a bit of heaven on earth. Yet, they all fail to one degree or another; and when we die, they personally collapse completely.

A fellow high school classmate said to me just this last week talking about socialism: “I disagree with the general use of the term socialism to describe giving from the heart to help someone in need. That is just the outgrowth of the Love of Jesus Christ that dwells in the hearts of those who have accepted Him. Because many societies and nations have had a foundation of salvation through faith in Jesus Christ and His sacrifice on the cross for us, the action of His Holy Spirit and the Word of God have affected the morals and character of the people, even those who do not profess to trust in Jesus, so much that they have compassion for others in need and desire to help them when they can. I believe this would be a more accurate understanding of the giving you described.”


Socialism, and many of the other isms, are humankind’s feeble attempt to have heaven on earth without God. And that is why they fail. They are like the Pharisees of old – they try to make a caring and giving world through secular rules and regulations without the love imparted by our Creator.

You absolutely can’t voluntarily give to others without love. It is impossible. Do you give Christmas or birthday presents to people you don’t love? Of course not.

Therefore, the isms have to use the threat of incarceration or worse.

Thus, in the 20th century, over 100 million (some reports say as many as 140 million) people were murdered in the name of socialism and communism – even far more than were murdered in the name of fascism (estimated at about 40 million).

How would Karl Marx feel if he knew this was the product of his thinking? Remember, he created this mess as a hypothetical. He never actually lived it.

Humankind has an evil streak. It has been said that if Adam and Eve had been Cajuns, they would have eaten the serpent instead of the fruit, and things would be all right. I don’t know about that.

Nevertheless, it is in our nature to have an evil streak and most isms magnify this evil streak by forcing people to be givers without love.

Curiously, capitalism, which is as natural as gravity, seems to magnify this evil streak least of all. Further, capitalism, when controlled by appropriate regulations, can do a lot of good. Capitalism is the good, but not great, ism.

I said early on and in columns before this series, that I believe in socialism in small groups where everyone knows all the members, for these are really places where love for fellow human beings can blossom. I still believe this.

It is a broad brush, big socialism with its one-size-fits-all programs and bureaucracies that fail, primarily because they lack love.

Take, for instance, Social Security, which on the face of it, sounds good, but was created without love. I have never voted for Social Security or for anyone who promulgated Social Security (they were all dead or in their dotage when I came along).

Yet, I have been forced by threat of incarceration to pay into this system since March 1970 when I got my real first job at $2.50/hour. The promises made as to what I would get out of Social Security have been diminished several times in the years since then. Yet, the government has taken more and more of my earnings, and my employer’s earnings, year after year, in the name of Social “Security” – a collection of transactions without love.

Now, I am at the age where I can apply, have applied and do receive Social Security – solely to get my money back., I have never believed in the program.

However, for religious reasons, I have not retired. Moses never retired. King Solomon never retired. The Apostle Paul never retired. I can’t name one retired person in the Bible.

I don’t pass judgment on you, should you choose to retire, I’ll just offer up it is not for me, again, for personal religious reasons. I may get too feeble to work, but I’ll not retire if I can get out of bed in the morning.

So how are my personal beliefs affected by Social Security? Now, every month, because I refuse to retire, my current payments into Social Security are equal to half the check I receive from Social Security. One could say my religious beliefs have forced a tax on my Social Security check of 50 percent.

If I wished to be vocal about it, I could say the government’s policies discriminate against me on religious grounds. I won’t, and it is a blessing to be able to work. But this is just one example where one size does not fit all when it comes to the feeble big socialism ideas imposed on us without love.

Yes, socialism is just one of humankind’s feeble attempts to create heaven on earth – and these attempts have failed every time, for they are godless and loveless. Remember this when you hear the “promises” of the politicians.

Jim Thompson, formerly of Marshall, is a graduate of Hillsboro High School and the University of Cincinnati. He resides in Duluth, Ga. and is a columnist for The Highland County Press. He may be reached at

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