Most of us in the United States were taught that socialism is an economic system where the state owns the means of production, and that communism is essentially a way of life. Although not entirely inaccurate, these definitions whitewash the underlying realities of communist ideology.
To really appreciate the significant difference in understanding, we need to start with David Hume’s essay called Idea of a Perfect Commonwealth, published after his death. James Madison embraced Hume’s idea during the formulation of the original Virginia Plan. But the frequently overlooked building block in Hume’s essay is his deduction that “earlier attempts to create a perfect society made the fundamental error of trying to change human nature.” In our modern parlance, Hume was arguing that republics had failed because they relied too heavily on human nature becoming or staying virtuous. That is, the architects of government assumed they could mold human nature. Hume believe a framework of government was necessary to harness human emotions and stabilize a republic. This is what the framers of the US Constitution attempted to do – with good success to this point in history.
Hume’s position is the exact opposite view of Marxist-Leninist communism. They believe that the triumph of “scientific socialism” through a violent dialectic process will eventually perfect the “Bolshevik man” and create a classless society. At this point, the theory is that the dialectic process halts and there is no longer a requirement for a state to exist. The “dictatorship of the proletariat” that “re-educates” (or kills) wayward people would fade away, and perfect communism would be achieved.
To a communist, socialism is the state of the world after smashing capitalism and before perfect communism is achieved. This is the period where the “trinity” of communist thought and action take place. The trinity is that thesis is followed by an antithesis; the result is a new synthesis. Marx borrowed Hegel’s dialectic process and the belief that history was leading somewhere. Like Hegel’s approval of conquest and slavery, Marx approved of violence.
The notion of dialectic motion exposes Marx’s theory to Thomas Aquinas’ argument for the Prime Mover from his Quinque viæ. The essence of this proof is that all motion (change) must have been started by an “unmoved mover” (God). Since communism rejects the existence of God but embraces dialectic motion, it runs into a conflict with the First Mover argument. This may not be enough for many, but it led to some significant defections during the Cold War.
There are two other flaws in the theory worthy of note. Even if it were possible to traumatize all living generations to this theoretic state of perfection, it would have to be passed on to subsequent generations. Without the force of a state once perfect communism is achieved, human nature must be completely changed for all subsequent generations. That cannot happen without changing human DNA – and we don’t have the technology to make such a controlled change even now. It certainly didn’t exist when Marx concocted this malignant theory. Put in more direct terms, Marxism advocates that human DNA can be reprogrammed to perfection via force and violence. Marx had never heard of PTSD. The theory also doesn’t allow for birth defects or brain disorders that affect behavior.
Finally, there is the assumption that the dictatorship of the proletariat would fade away quietly. But the dictatorship itself has not been perfected by the same dialectic process as the rest of mankind. Without the same perfection, how can the dictatorship be expected to defy Lord Acton’s Maxim that absolute power corrupts absolutely?
Communism is a belief system. It is a twisted religion that does not believe in the existence of God or a spirit world, but it believes in the perfecting of human nature through violence.
To further understand communism, one must understand some of the word games they play – the “Aesopian language.” During the Stalin years, Cominform (“central propaganda”) published For a Lasting Peace, for a People’s Democracy. Notice that they appeal to a love of democratic rule, but the truth is that it is bait to trap people under the dictatorship of the proletariat. Today, the United States Communist Party (CPUSA), has the following on its website:
For democracy. For equality. For socialism. For a sustainable future and a world that puts people before profits. Join the Communist Party USA today.
We have been programmed to think that democracy is the ideal. Marxists believe likewise. Our nation’s founders knew better and created a republic.
 “Online Library of Liberty.” No. 70: David Hume, “Idea of a Perfect Commonwealth” (1777) – Online Library of Liberty. Accessed March 21, 2019. http://oll.libertyfund.org/pages/oll-reader-70.
 McInerny, Ralph, and John O’Callaghan. “Saint Thomas Aquinas.” Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, Stanford University, 23 May 2014, plato.stanford.edu/entries/aquinas/.
This article was originally published by Dennis Haugh and is reprinted by permission.