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Textbook Communism: American Version
Thomas DiLorenzo

The same U.S. government that spent hundreds of billions of dollars and squandered tens of thousands of American lives in its “cold war” to supposedly defend against a communist takeover of America also spent hundreds of billions on communist indoctrination in American schools for the past sixty years.  Higher education in America is essentially a socialist institution thanks to pervasive government funding, even for schools like Johns Hopkins University, the recipient of hundreds of millions in taxpayer dollars annually, that laughingly call themselves “private.”  Grove City College and possibly Hillsdale College are the only two real private colleges left.

The ideology of “woke,” the latest deceptive euphemism for communism, now dominates all American institutions and is the result of sixty years of communist indoctrination starting with the “counter culture” universities of the 1960s, and filtering down to all levels of schooling.  Predominantly government-funded schooling at that.  The result is the ongoing communist “woke” revolution that is destroying what’s left of Western civilization in America day by day.

My friend the late Yuri Maltsev, who spent the first forty years of his life in the Soviet Union, recognized this at least a decade ago, and once said to me that “Americans had a lucky four-year reprieve” when Trump was elected instead of a continuation of the Obama/Hillary Clinton regime.  It is now obvious what Obama, the lifelong socialist, meant when he said that “we” want to “fundamentally transform America.”

Now along comes Xi Van Fleet, who lived through the horrors of Mao’s “cultural revolution” in China before miraculously escaping to America as a young woman, who has written the important book Mao’s America: A Survivor’s Warning.  Like Yuri Maltsev who lived through Soviet totalitarianism, Van Fleet is horrified that the exact same thing – a Marxist revolution – is occurring in her adopted country (where she is now a citizen).  The parallels between Mao’s “cultural revolution” and the American “woke” cultural revolution are striking and sometimes shocking.  The puppet masters of the woke cultural revolution are Maoist communists, through and through.

For example, she proves in spades that:  both revolutions use the Marxist tactics of division, indoctrination, deception, coercion, cancelation, subversion, and violence.  They both destroy traditional culture and replace it with Marxist slogans and ideology (Black Lives Matter!!!  Fascists!!).  Both “weaponize youth” as what Stalin supposedly called “useful idiots.”  Both share the goal of totalitarian power over society, and both seek the destruction of freedom.

Critical Race Theory is a primary tool of the American communist movement.  As she writes:  “The Communist regime used the same critical theory to divide the people.   The only difference is that they used class instead of race.”  In China the communist regime changed the names of schools “to be politically correct”; students were taught to hate their history and heritage; statues and symbols of China’s history were destroyed; students were encouraged to report on each other (my former employer, Loyola University Maryland, posted large posters encouraging students to call a number or email to report any politically-incorrect language they might hear on campus).  All of this happens today in America as well.

The [Only] Black Lives Matter/Antifa riots of 2020 reminded Van Fleet of the government-orchestrated violence of her youth in China under Mao.  In communist China free speech was only allowed for the government and its mouthpieces, just as in America today “free speech now is only allowed for the loud progressive left.”

The Communist Manifesto includes in big black letters, “Abolition of the Family” as one of its primary goals, since parents can compete with the state in educating children.  Thus, “CRT in schools, where the teachings are designed to violate and disrespect the sanctity of the family and usurp parental values,” has caused children to scorn their parents as white supremacists and worse.

Van Fleet describes the very first days of Mao’s murderous “cultural revolution” when all of a sudden, out of nowhere, there was “the sudden appearance of giant posters” with all sorts of communist slogans.  This reminded yours truly of all the “Black Lives Matter” giant posters that also appeared seemingly out of nowhere.  (A Loyola University Maryland alumnus wrote me about the creepiness of returning to the campus for a wedding to see gigantic, 20-30 foot high Black Lives Matter banners all over the place, with some much larger and spanning the entire width of North Charles Street, the main North/South avenue in Baltimore).

So-called “cancel culture” is nothing new; Van Flett gives chapter and verse of how Chinese people suspected of not being sufficiently communistic were routinely canceled and their lives gleefully destroyed by the state and its henchmen.

Xi Van Fleet, not surprisingly, is a Ron Paul admirer.  She explained that when she first became concerned about what was going on in America and the government’s role in fostering what seemed to be a budding Marxist revolution she started watching political candidates on TV in 2008.  And, she says:

“One candidate . . . suddenly grabbed my attention.  He didn’t sound like any of the other candidates.  He was speaking about issues head-on, very matter of fact about them; nothing he said seemed to be polished sound bites or political double-speak.  For the first time, I was hearing something political that didn’t sound political; it made real sense to me.  I’m talking about then-Congressman Ron Paul . . . .  I soon bought and read his book End the Fed.”

Language control was an essential part of communist indoctrination in China, as in America today, for “if you can orchestrate the words people use and how they use them, you can control their speech and therefore their thoughts.”  Sound familiar?

Another essential part of Chinese communism, writes Van Fleet, was how Mao wanted to “destroy everything, burn it all down, and build a brand new world over the ashes.”  Ludwig von Mises called this “destructionism,” a practice of all socialists everywhere.  Van Fleet compares this to Joe Biden’s presidential campaign theme of “build back better.” Let’s destroy America first, then build it back “better.”

Van Fleet understands that the origins of the American cultural revolution that we are experiencing today were in so-called “cultural Marxism,” a set of ideas invented by “a group of Jewish Marxist scholars belonging to a school of social theory called the ‘Frankfurt School’ in Frankfurt, Germany.”  As Hitler rose to power, they came to the United States with “a strategic plan to destroy Western culture through the manipulation of America’s students and academics,” collecting many “useful idiots to read, teach, and popularize their ideology.”  Such people are called “American college professors” today.

Their theory was not really a theory but constant criticizing and griping about everything under the sun, like the miserable little communists they were.  Some of them left Nazi Germany and ended up in beautiful Santa Barbara, California, where they feigned misery and hatred of life in America for the rest of their lives.  They tried to dress it up as some sort of scholarship by calling it “critical theory,” but it has always been nothing more than communist propaganda to be fed to the useful idiots of the world, many of whom are called “college students.”

“The works of the Frankfurt School are the theoretical foundations for what we now know as “woke-ism,” she writes.  And woke-ism means “the entire Western civilization and free market system need to be destroyed and burned to the ground . . .”

Fostering hatred of those suspected of being insufficiently thrilled about communism was an important strategy of the Chinese communist totalitarians, for it led to not just canceling, but mass murder of suspected dissenters.  Van Fleet compares this to Biden’s creepy Independence Hall speech with an all-red background where, flanked by two Marines, he denounced all Republicans as “a clear and present danger” to American democracy and the world.

The “Red Guards” were the “stormtroopers” of Chinese communism, fomenting violence and mayhem wherever they went.  “America’s version of the Red Guards,” Van Fleet writes, “is a combination of radical activists, BLM, and Antifa.”  Both gangs proudly boast of their communist backgrounds and beliefs.

Mao’s America ends with chapters entitled “Destruction of Family” and “Destruction of Religion.”  This of course is occurring all around us today, as it did in China some sixty years ago, around the same time the American communist cultural revolution started on college campuses.  The Chinese cultural revolution essentially died after Mao’s death in 1976, but the American cultural revolution survives and is on the way to dwarfing Mao’s “achievements” but with far less bloodshed – so far.





Thomas J. DiLorenzo is a Research Fellow at the Independent Institute and president of the Mises Institute. He is a former professor of economics at Loyola University Maryland and a longtime member of the senior faculty of the Mises Institute. He received his Ph.D. in economics from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, and he has taught at the State University of New York at Buffalo, George Mason University, and University of Tennessee at Chattanooga.

Professor DiLorenzo is the author or co-author of numerous books, including Hamilton's Curse: How Jefferson's Arch Enemy Betrayed the American Revolution; Lincoln Unmasked: What You're Not Supposed to Know About Dishonest Abe; How Capitalism Saved America: The Untold History of Our Country from the Pilgrims to the Present; The Real Lincoln: A New Look a Abraham Lincoln, His Agenda, and an Unnecessary War; From Pathology to Politics: Public Health in America (with James T. Bennett); The Food and Drink Police: America's Nannies, Busybodies, and Petty Tyrants (with James T. Bennett); Underground Government: The Off-budget Public Sector (with James T. Bennett); Unfair Competition: The Profits of Nonprofits(with James T. Bennett); and CancerScam: The Diversion of Federal Cancer Funds for Politics(with James T. Bennett).

His articles have appeared in such scholarly journals as Public Finance QuarterlyThe Independent ReviewReview of Austrian Economics, and Public Choice.

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