Communism: a perfect government under the right leader???

After Buffy Snell’s article exposing the indoctrination her child’s teacher engaged in in his classroom, a few emails were sent to Buffy from people expressing their feelings. Among them was one which this clip is from:

Dear Mrs. Snell
After reading your blog post on teachers at the Junior High, I would like to have you understand a few points from my opinion…

2. Karl Marx invented Communism to be the perfect government. The reason communism doesn’t work is because of selfish and corrupt leaders. If leaders did not become corrupt, but were more like King Benjamin, then communism could be the perfect government. Also have you ever noticed how similar the law of consecration and communism are?

Sincerely,
An American Fork City citizen

This person, obviously LDS for a couple of the references used, has fallen into the same trap that so many others do in our society because we are being enculturated into a social and political democracy.

 

I am honestly at a loss to understand how so many LDS people have the mistaken belief that communism would ever be ideal or that it is related to the law of consecration. Communism is the great deception.

I have already posted a couple times on this topic on these 2 pages, but I might as well post a few more quotes below.

https://www.utahsrepublic.org/lds/joseph-smith-on-socialism/

https://www.utahsrepublic.org/civics/socialism-is-not-the-united-order/

These quotes come out of a file I have and just to be perfectly clear, I did not look all of these up. I just looked up a couple which I have access to, but cannot validate all of them with my own resources. If anyone knows if one is incorrect, please let me know and I’ll remove it, but I think they’re all likely accurate.

David O. McKay, President of the Church, in Conference Report, April 1966, pp. 109–110:
The position of this Church on the subject of Communism has never changed. We consider it the greatest Satanical threat to peace, prosperity, and the spread of God’s work among men that exists on the face of the earth. In this connection, we are continually being asked to give our opinion concerning various patriotic groups or individuals who are fighting Communism and speaking up for freedom. Our immediate concern, however, is not with parties, groups, or persons, but with principles. We therefore commend and encourage every person and every group who are sincerely seeking to study Constitutional principles and awaken a sleeping and apathetic people to the alarming conditions that are rapidly advancing about us. We wish all of our citizens throughout the land were participating in some type of organized self-education in order that they could better appreciate what is happening and know what they can do about it. . . . No member of this Church can be true to his faith, nor can any American be loyal to his trust, while lending aid, encouragement or sympathy to any of these false philosophies, for if he does they will prove snares to his feet.

Letter from David O. McKay’s Office, signed April 12, 1969:
By reason of his office and calling, Elder Benson is entitled to inspiration when addressing Church groups, and, since Communism is a definite threat to the eternal principles of free agency, it cannot be considered that he is “out-of-line” when discussing it in talks.

First Presidency Letter (signed by Heber J. Grant, J. Reuben Clark, and David O. McKay), written to U. S. Treasury, 30 September, 1941:
The Church has not found it possible to follow along the lines of the present general tendency in the matter of property rights, taxes, the curtailment of rights and liberties of the people, nor in general the economic policies of what is termed the “New Deal.” . . . Unless the people of America forsake the sins and the errors, political and otherwise, of which they are now guilty and return to the practice of the great fundamental principles of Christianity, and of Constitutional government, there will be no exaltation for them spiritually, and politically we shall lose our liberty and free institutions. . . . We believe that our real threat comes from within and not from without, and it comes from the underlying spirit common to Naziism, Fascism, and Communism, namely the spirit which would array class against class, which would set up a socialistic state of some sort, which would rob the people of the liberties which we possess under the Constitution, and would set up such a reign of terror as exists now in many parts of Europe. . . . We confess to you that it has not been possible for us to unify our own people even upon the necessity of such a turning about, and therefore we cannot unfortunately, and we say it regretfully, make any practical suggestion to you as to how the nation can be turned about.

David O. McKay, President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, in Conference Report, April 1962, p. 125:
Men today are rapidly classifying themselves into two groups: believers and nonbelievers. J. Edgar Hoover, and I quote, says: “There is no place here in America for part-time patriots. This nation is face to face with the greatest danger ever to confront it, a sinister and deadly conspiracy which can be conquered only by an alert, informed citizenry. It is indeed appalling that some members of our society continue to deplore and criticize those who stress the communist danger. Public indifference to this threat is tantamount to national suicide. Lethargy leads only to disaster. Knowledge of the enemy, alertness to the danger, everyday patriotism are the brick and mortar with which we can build an impregnable fortress against communism.

David O. McKay, President of the Church, in Conference Report, October 1959, pp. 4–9:
On the fly-leaf of the book, The Naked Communist, by W. Cleon Skousen, we find this quotation, (and I admonish everybody to read that excellent book of Chief Skousen’s): “The conflict between communism and freedom is the problem of our time. It overshadows all other problems. This conflict mirrors our age, its toils, its tensions, its troubles, and its tasks. On the outcome of this conflict depends the future of mankind.”

David O. McKay, in Conference Report, October 1962, p. 8:
Above all else, strive to support good and conscientious candidates of either party who are aware of the great dangers inherent in communism and who are truly dedicated to the Constitution in the tradition of our founding fathers. They should also pledge their sincere fealty to our way of liberty—a liberty which aims at the preservation of both personal and property rights. Study the issues, analyze the candidates on these grounds, and then exercise your franchise as free men and women. Never be found guilty of exchanging your birthright for a mess of pottage!

David O. McKay, in The Instructor, February 1856, p. 34:
Next to being one in worshiping God, there is nothing in this world upon which this Church should be more united than in upholding and defending the Constitution of the United States! May the appeal of our Lord in His intercessory prayer for unity be realized in our homes, our wards, our stakes, and in our support of the basic principles of our Republic.

David O. McKay, in Deseret News, “Church Section,” 18 October 1952, p. 2:
During the first half of the twentieth century we have traveled far into the soul-destroying land of socialism and made strange alliances through which we have become involved in almost continuous hot and cold wars over the whole of the earth. In this retreat from freedom the voices of protesting citizens have been drowned by raucous riots of intolerance and abuse from those who led the retreat and their millions of gullible youth, who are marching merrily to their doom, carrying banners on which are emblazoned such intriguing and misapplied labels as social justice, equality, reform, patriotism, social welfare.

Joseph Fielding Smith, in Conference Report, April 1950, p. 159:
Now I tell you it is time the people of the United States were waking up with the understanding that if they don’t save the Constitution from the dangers that threaten it, we will have a change of government.

First Presidency Statement, in Improvement Era, vol. 39 (August 1936), p. 488:
With great regret we learn from credible sources, governmental and others, that a few Church members are joining directly or indirectly, the Communists and are taking part in their activities. . . . To support Communism is treasonable to our free institutions, and no patriotic American citizen may become either a Communist or supporter of Communism. . . . Communism being thus hostile to loyal American citizenship and incompatible with true Church membership, of necessity no loyal American citizen and no faithful Church member can be a Communist. We call upon all Church members completely to eschew Communism. The safety of our divinely inspired Constitutional government and the welfare of our Church imperatively demand that Communism shall have no place in America.

First Presidency Statement, in Conference Report, April 1942, p. 90; italics added:
We again warn our people in America of the constantly increasing threat against our inspired Constitution and our free institutions set up under it. The same political tenets and philosophies that have brought war and terror in other parts of the world are at work amongst us in America. The proponents thereof are seeking to undermine our own form of government and to set up instead one of the forms of dictatorship now flourishing in other lands.

President Spencer W. Kimball, Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball, pp. 405:

“The only way we can keep our freedom is to work at it.  Not some of us.  All of us.  Not some of the time, but all of the time.  So if you value your citizenship and want to keep it for yourself and your children and their children, give it your faith, your belief, and give it your active support in civic affairs.”

Ezra Taft Benson (do I even need to start quoting him???) :), April 1965 General Conference

“Hear his words [speaking of President David O. McKay]: No greater immediate responsibility rests upon members of the Church, upon all citizens of this Republic and of neighboring Republics than to protect the freedom vouchsafed by the Constitution of the United States.” (Cited in Jerreld L. Newquist, Prophets, Principles and National Survival [SLC: Publishers Press, 1964], p. 157.) As important as are all other principles of the gospel, it was the freedom issue which determined whether you received a body. To have been on the wrong side of the freedom issue during the war in heaven meant eternal damnation. How then can Latter-day Saints expect to be on the wrong side in this life and escape the eternal consequences? The war in heaven is raging on earth today. The issues are the same: “Shall men be compelled to do what others claim is for their best welfare” or will they heed the counsel of the prophet and preserve their freedom?”

15 Responses to “Communism: a perfect government under the right leader???”

  • Susie:

    Excellent post Oak! One that people can use for a reference for years to come. It’s nice to have all of these quotes in one place. Thank you!

  • Pawnder:

    You are right on, Oak, for your observations as to the dangers of communism/socialism. Let’s take the argument one step further. Let’s debate the issue on a philosophical basis. What is the philosophy behind the twin sisters of communism/socialism? What is the core idea? The following quotations are some of the words of the prophets on the philosophical side of this issue.

    But before going into that, I want to discuss errors and myths that members have fallen into. The Brethren, over the years, have been united and vociferous in their opposition to communism/socialism. Of that there can be no doubt. The myth that communism is the perfect government, or that it is similar to the United Order, is as shocking as it is common in the Church. How can anyone claim to be a member in good standing in the Church, and yet be ignorant of the Church’s stand on communism? For that person who said that communism is the prefect government, all I have to say is, “Show me one, just one official statement by the Brethren declaring communism to be ‘perfect,’ ‘ideal,’ or even ‘good.'” People keep up that myth but can never document or back up their claim with ANY official Church position on the matter. Would the person who said that please document and prove it by any official Church pronouncement. They can’t of course, because such official statements don’t exist. But, as Oak has already shown, the official statements of the Church that say that communism/socialism to be “Satan’s counterfeit of the United Order,” “evil,” or “destructive of free agency” are legion. As I said, the statements of the Brethren on the subject are united, vociferous, and abundant.

    By the way, lest anyone claim that there is a substantial difference between communism and socialism, please remember that Russia used to be a communist dictatorship, and called their country the U.S.S.R. Just go over in your mind what that acronym stands for and ask the question, “How can a communist country call themselves ‘socialist?'” That shows that the names, communism and socialism are really closer than people think. They are both identical in their desire to destroy human freedom.

    Now we will consider why the Brethren are united in their hatred of the evils of communism and socialism. What do the Brethren say as to the ideas or philosophy behind the great evil of communism, socialism, fascism, and all other forms of totalitarianism? Marion G. Romney was asked by the Brethren to give a talk called, “Socialism and the United Order Compared” at a BYU devotional in 1966. He came up with six ideas of contrast between the two. Here they are:

    1- The United Order is based on the foundation of a belief in God and his Son Jesus Christ. Socialism is based on the belief in man, and denies the existence of God.

    2- The United Order is based on the agency of man. Everything about its organization, how people join it, and its belief in free enterprise is based on agency. Socialism is based on force. The state forces its will on the people.

    3- The United Order upholds the belief in private ownership and management of property. A careful reading of the Doctrine and Covenants shows that property, after its initial consecration to the Order, is “deeded” back to the person. The Brethren are united in saying that the United Order is based upon the principle of private property. (D&C 51:5) Here is what Brother Romney says about socialism:
    “Socialism is operated on the principle of collective or governmental ownership and management.
    Thus in both implementation and ownership and management of property, the United Order preserves to men their God-given agency, while socialism deprives them of it.”

    4- The United Order is non-political, while Elder Romney says “Socialism is political, both in theory and in practice. It is thus exposed to, and fiddled by, the corruption which plagues and finally destroys all political governments which undertake to abridge man’s agency.”

    5- The United Order can only come into existence when the people attain a great level of righteousness, especially the virtues of honesty and integrity. Righteousness or morality is not important to socialism. In fact, socialism and communism hate religion and personal morality. They wish to debase the individual.

    Those are the reasons why the Brethren are united in decrying communism/socialism as the great evil that it is. Boiled down, communism/socialism is based on force, while the Law of Consecration and the United Order are based on agency. And we should all know by now who backs force and who backs agency. Any member of the Church who doesn’t know which supernatural side backs force and which backs agency would flunk LDS Doctrine 101.

    The way to discern the truth is to identify the principles involved because Satan will use the most flattering lies and most plausible sounding rhetoric to get people to believe in his doctrines based on lies. Always examine the principles involved, then use the following idea.

    After studying the principles on which communism/socialism are based, one can use Christ’s admonition, “Ye shall know them by their fruits.” Here are some of the fruits of communism. I would ask all to read the book, Harvest of Sorrow by Robert Conquest. It traces the history of Stalin’s mass purges of the Ukraine when he deliberately starved about 14-15 million people to death in order to forcibly (there’s that ugly word again) confiscate their property and collectivise it. And that is just one of his many campaigns of terror he spread around the nation. The “fruits” of communism are force, terror, murder, hatred, and many other negative traits. It boggles my mind that any true Latter-day Saint can countenance such evil and try to excuse it by saying, “The reason communism doesn’t work is because of selfish and corrupt leaders. If leaders did not become corrupt, but were more like King Benjamin, then communism could be the perfect government.” I can hardly believe that. The truth is that communism doesn’t work because it BREEDS selfishness and corruption. Communism was begotten by Satan, who is the father of selfishness and corruption. How can this child called communism be different from its parent, Satan?

    Wake up!! Members of the Church, we have to learn the truth and adhere to its precepts in these last days, or our eternal reward will be jeopardized. Consider these words:

    “We are in the midst of the greatest exhibition of propaganda that the world has ever seen. Just do not believe all you read or hear. The elect are being deceived.” (J. Reuben Clark Jr.)

    And this:

    “Latter-day Saints cannot be true to their faith and lend aid, encouragement, or sympathy to any of these false philosophies [communism and all other similar ‘isms’]. They will prove snares to their feet.” (First Presidency, General Conference April 1942)

    Or this:

    “Communism being thus hostile to loyal American citizenship and incompatible with true Church membership, of necessity no loyal American and no faithful Church member can be a Communist. We call upon all Church members to completely eschew Communism.” (First Presidency, Deseret News, July 1936)

    And so on. The quotations are numerous. But perhaps the best quotation I ever heard about the subject came from Elder Merrill:

    “Communism is organized wickedness and crime of the blackest type. Harsh terms, certainly! Its objectives are confiscation of property, robbery of those who have, slavery of its productive workers, and death to is opponents.” (Joseph F. Merrill, General Conference, April 1949)

    How can any member of God’s Church even contemplate saying, “Karl Marx invented Communism to be the perfect government?” That reminds me of the scripture, “Woe unto them that call darkness light, and light darkness.” We have to be wise in these latter days. We HAVE to know the will of the Lord, and keep it. We can’t assume that we know what’s right, we have to be sure.

  • Jennrc3:

    Very nicely put. The scripture you were referring to was Isaiah 5:20:”Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!” This has been in my head for the last week.

    The only thing I would add is that we need to be aware that there is much corruption in both of the main political parties. I am imbarrassed to say that I, like many other conservatives, used to believe it was “safe” to vote for the Republican, because the Democrat always was too liberal for me. We need to search out each candidate and find the one who best understands our Constitution and how to keep our Republic. It may not be the Democrat or the Republican. Often they both are on the same train, going the same direction toward Socialism (just one is going at a faster speed). We need to consider that the country most of us grew up in is not the Republic it was supposed to be and the direction it is headed is toward socialism. Government is out of control, and they have been allowed to be in charge of too many things that we are used to allowing them to control, so it feels normal. It takes sacrifice to start taking on the responsibilities that we haven’t ever had to think about doing ourselves. To keep our freedoms we will have to take on more responsibility. When our cities or state are asking us what ammenities we would like to see in our area, keep it mind that someone has to pay for those things. Is it right or charitable to vote to force your neighbor to pay for something he may or may not need, want or be able to afford? That is not the proper role of government. Communities can get together and create what they want or need in their city, with a few exceptions, without the government getting involved.

  • Anonymous:

    If you supported the New Deal, you can’t be exalted? Sounds flaky to me.

  • BuffySnell:

    Pawnder- Wow! Great quotes. Thanks for sharing your knowledge on the subject.

  • Anonymous:

    “The reason communism doesn’t work is because of selfish and corrupt leaders.”

    Duh. The reason that Communism doesn’t work is because it offers power to who ever is willing to be most evil in the pursuit of it. Ergo selfish and corrupt leaders will ALWAYS be at the helm.

    That is why our government was so genuinely brilliant. It is the best way to limit the pursuit of power by evil and corrupt men.

    There has never yet been a better method invented.

  • Anonymous:

    “If you supported the New Deal, you can’t be exalted? Sounds flaky to me.”

    Stallin killed 10 million people. If you supported his conspiracy for power, should you get exaltation?

    I sure hope that’s not how heaven is built. Sounds like Hell to me.

  • dmichae1, the quote isn’t saying that. The statement says they don’t agree with the economic policies of the New Deal, but then it says this in a separate context.

    “. . . Unless the people of America forsake the sins and the errors, political and otherwise, of which they are now guilty and return to the practice of the great fundamental principles of Christianity, and of Constitutional government, there will be no exaltation for them spiritually, and politically we shall lose our liberty and free institutions.”

  • Susie:

    You know….I think that AF citizen was right! If you look really closely at a picture of King Benjamin speaking up on the tower, I think you can barely make out the red communist flag waving behind him. In fact, I think it was Captain Moroni who waved the first ‘Title of Communism’ flag with the words “In memory of our Earth, our secularism, and bondage, our social justice, our partners and our unions” as he walked around gathering support from other communists, socialists and union members in order to form a strong coalition. And they were so proud of that communist flag, they put it on every fortified city tower in the Book of Mormon to show their solidarity. :)

  • Anonymous:

    Are you seriously equating Stalin to FDR?

  • Anonymous:

    Doesn’t sound like a separate context to me. Sounds like a continuation. “The Church has not found it possible to follow along the lines of…the economic policies of what is termed the “New Deal.” Then it goes on to say “Unless the people of America forsake the sins and the errors, political and otherwise…”

    What is a political sin if not something that the church can’t “possibly follow”?

  • dmichae1, there is a “…” in-between those two concepts so there is no way to tell how much stuff separates them, but I don’t think it’s difficult to assume the First Presidency isn’t condemning people that agreed with the New Deal to hell. Maybe you can locate the full quote and post it here.

  • Anonymous:

    I’m not prone to assume things, especially since I’m not a GA worshipper. I go by what it says. Yes, the full quite could help, but I’m not the one who threw inthe ellipses.

  • Anonymous:

    My pleasure, BuffySnell. Hope it helped. I’m proud that you stood up for the truth. Pawnder

  • cea7of9:

    These are a couple of quotes from a talk that Pres. Ezra Taft Benson gave in Conference in 1979. He is quoting the First Presidency from 1939 and Marion G. Romney in 1979.

    You can twist whatever you like from it but it seems pretty clear to me what the church’s stance is on Communism. I don’t really understand how someone can misunderstand it. (Note: This is easy enough to research. I found it by doing a search on The Church’s website!) The Church has never been secretive or foggy about their stance on the subject.

    “Communism is not a political party nor a political plan under the Constitution; it is a system of government that is the opposite of our Constitutional government. …

    “Since Communism, established, would destroy our American Constitutional government, to support Communism is treasonable to our free institutions, and no patriotic American citizen may become either a Communist or supporter of Communism. …

    “We call upon all Church members completely to eschew [shun] Communism. The safety of our divinely inspired Constitutional government and the welfare of our Church imperatively demand that Communism shall have no place in America” (signed: Heber J. Grant, J. Reuben Clark, Jr., David O. McKay, The First Presidency, in Deseret News, 3 July 1936; italics added).

    More recently, President Marion G. Romney, in the First Presidency Message in the September 1979 Ensign, wrote: “Communism is Satan’s counterfeit for the gospel plan, and … it is an avowed enemy of the God of the land. Communism is the greatest anti-Christ power in the world today and therefore the greatest menace not only to our peace but to our preservation as a free people. By the extent to which we tolerate it, accommodate ourselves to it, permit ourselves to be encircled by its tentacles and drawn to it, to that extent we forfeit the protection of the God of this land” (p. 5).