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Other Articles from The Villager

Chairman Mao Zedong on liberalism


by Job S. Amupanda
Columns

 

“I am liberal” is a statement often thrown around by charlatans to ostensibly pigeonhole their political lenses. If you ask them what it means, they say it means that they are “open minded, believe in liberty and human rights”, etcetera etcetera.

Pundits know that this is one of many liberal propaganda used to promote and sustain real liberal values. By declaring that you are liberal, you unconsciously open your door to receive that box called 'Liberalism'. You may not see what is inside for the description of the outside states “open mindedness, belief in liberty and human rights.”

Before we even open the liberal box, can we say the ideals of liberty,justice, new ideas and human rights are those obtained only from liberalism? Didn’t these virtues exist even before John Locke, 'the father of liberalism', was born? While at it, was Luderitz founded by the thief called Adolf Luderitz or did the place exist even when he was still wearing nappies? If these virtues did exist before the birth of John Locke, if these are not copyrighted by liberalism, then what is Liberalism? 

Liberalism, summarised in short , as an outlook that prioritises an individual over the collective (community). We often summarise it as an idea that preaches survival of the fittest – every man for himself – God for us all. Liberals are anarchic, opportunists and symbols of non-commitment. Those that say they are liberal are often unaware of this. In Oshiwambo we say "om’ntu keshiom’ntu ngele kapuna aantu" (you are only a person through others). This is commonly known as Ubuntu.

Liberalism contradicts the above for it teaches egoism, selfishness and individual glory as opposed to collective progress. This 'disease' can best be understood in its damages to society. When we discuss its damages, Africans immediately remember the man called Adam Smith and his ‘Invisible hand of the market’, which is costing us lots of lives. This is known as Neo-liberalism; an idea that Government must not get involved with in the economy, because the markets will determine ‘rewards.’

Liberalism (Neo) was responsible for the Structural Adjustment Programs as delivered by the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF). Indeed, it is liberals and liberalism that has delivered the current crisis of capitalism, which liberals term as ‘Global Financial Crisis.’

David Huntwork, in a commentary titled “You can’t spell liberalism without lies”, published on October 5, 2011, advises us to “hate the ideology of liberalism. We should hate how it twists the truth, manipulates the masses and exploits the fundamental human emotions of compassion and good will to further its own ends. We should hate its unceasing attacks on all that is good, moral and right. Above all else, we should hate it for the millions of lives it has damaged and ruined, for the lies it has propagated and for the threat it poses to our community, our nation and our culture.”

Of importance today, is the teachings of the greatest Chinese leader, Chairman Mao Zedong. For the sake of ignorant fools, Chairman Mao (December 26, 1893 – September 9, 1976) was a leader of the Chinese revolution; a guerrilla warfare strategist and a political philosopher (Marxist). His essay titled “Combating Liberalism”, dated September 7, 1937, was published in radical journal. Let us see what he had to say.

 

He identified 11 types of liberalism; “Firstly, to let things slide for the sake of peace and friendship when a person has clearly gone wrong and refrain from principled arguments, because he is an old acquaintance, a fellow townsman, a schoolmate, a close friend, a loved one, an old colleague or old subordinate. Or to touch on the matter lightly instead of going into it thoroughly, so as to keep on good terms. The result is that both the organisation and the individual are harmed.

 

Secondly, he identified liberalism as the ability to indulge in irresponsible criticism in private instead of actively putting forward one's suggestions to the organisation. To say nothing to people to their faces but to gossip behind their backs, or to say nothing at a meeting but to gossip afterwards. To show no regard at all for the principles of collective life but to follow one's own inclination, he said.

 

Thirdly, to let things drift if they do not affect one personally; to say as little as possible while knowing perfectly well what is wrong; to be worldly wise and play safe and seek only to avoid blame.

He saw it as the ability not to obey orders but to give pride of place to one's own opinions, to demand special consideration from the organisation but to reject its discipline.

 

Fifth, to indulge in personal attacks, pick quarrels, vent personal spite or seek revenge instead of entering into an argument and struggling against incorrect views for the sake of unity or progress or getting the work done properly. Sixth, to hear incorrect views without rebutting them and even to hear counter-revolutionary remarks without reporting them but instead taking them calmly as if nothing had happened.

 

Seventh, to be among the masses and fail to conduct, feel agitated or speak at meetings or conduct investigations and inquiries among them and instead, be indifferent to them and show no concern for their well-being.

In addition, to see someone harming the interests of the masses and yet not feel indignant, or dissuade or stop him or reason with him but to allow him to continue.

Ninth, to work half-heartedly without a definite plan or direction; to work perfunctorily and muddle along -- "So long as one remains a monk, one goes on tolling the bell."

 

Tenth, to regard oneself as having rendered great service to the revolution; to pride oneself on being a veteran; to disdain minor assignments while being quite unequal to major tasks; to be slipshod in work and slack in study. Finally, Chairman Mao saw it as the ability to be aware of one's own mistakes and yet make no attempt to correct them, taking a liberal attitude towards oneself.

Are you liberal?

 

Till Second Half – Hear and be heard!