Stossel: 100 Years of Communist Disaster

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This year marks communism's 100th birthday. Its horrors should remind us of the value of freedom.

& Maxim Lott October 3, 2017

When communism was first implemented 100 years ago, people were excited. Western academics and media figures at places like the New York Times praised the ideology even as millions starved. The praise continued even as communist leaders murdered political opponents.

Today, some Antifa activists carry communist flags. Some say communism failed in the Soviet Union because it wasn't "done right."

But communism has been tried again and again–in dozens of countries. It always fails. Stossel talks with Lily Tang Williams, who grew up in China, where tens of millions starved to death after government abolished private farms. Lily's father taught her to trap rats for food, but then even the rats ran out.

Somehow she survived, and now she says she never wants to be without freedom again.

She's so passionate about freedom that she ran for US Senate in 2016 as a libertarian.

She says her mission in life is to tell people that life without freedom is awful.

John Stossel joined Reason in 2017. The former of host of Fox Business' Stossel and ABC's 20/20, he has won 19 Emmys and authored several best-sellers, most recently No, They Can't: Why Government Fails—But Individuals Succeed. He is also the author of a popular weekly column that is syndicated via Creators.

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  • Robespierre Josef Stalin|10.3.17 @ 10:34AM|#

    John, You forgot all those commies in the United States marching against the this country's wars and for Civil Rights and shit. Horrors, indeed.

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  • Citizen X - #6|10.3.17 @ 10:50AM|#

    Sure, individual commies can sometimes be good people as long as they're nowhere near the levers of power.

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  • Robespierre Josef Stalin|10.3.17 @ 10:40AM|#


    Ré: Lily Tang

    She looks ok in that she poses with an assault rifle in front of the American flag, but I'm afraid she might be blind to the various caveats of libertarianism* so I don't know, man.

    Lily Tang Williams
    Lily Tang Williams @Lily4Liberty
    Oct 1
    My sister in law got a full time job at Walmart but still works at her old job part time to make extra $. What a hardworking immigrant!

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  • $park¥ leftist poser|10.3.17 @ 10:51AM|#

    Some say communism failed in the Soviet Union because it wasn't "done right."

    There's a lesson to be learned in those words.

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  • DavidS-T|10.3.17 @ 10:59AM|#

    By the way, let's not forget that the Bolshevik insurrection would never have been possible if it had not been for the First World War. (If in 1917 you had warned a Petrograd soldier, "Don't bring the Bolsheviks to power! They will kill millions of people!" he would probably reply "and just what do you think this war is doing right now?") The spread of Communism to eastern and central Europe would not have been possible without the Second World War. A Communist China would probably never have come about without Japan's war against China, which fatally weakened Chiang Kai-shek's government.

    To me the lesson is plain that if you really oppose Communism, you should oppose the leading cause of it--and Fascism as well: war.

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