Collective or Individual?

Soviet stamp celebrating collectivization

Soviet stamp celebrating collectivization

Collective or Individual?

Obama used “collective” at his inauguration.

Government puts people in collectives. They “collect” people.

It’s like a cattle roundup. Government dumps people into programs. Listen to the health care debate. It’s about aggregating people into programs.

This is how Russia did it:  You owned land as an individual. Government took your land. It took all land from everyone. It tore down fences. It made one big, collective farm. It made you an employee working land you once owned, but with a horde of others.  You were to feel inspired to work “for the good of the whole”. There was no private land. No individuals owned land. You were part of the collective.

The productivity of the farms declined. No one had the profit motive. Workers dallied. Many starved.

What are current examples?

  • Much public education has a collective feel to it.
  • Social medicine is a collective.
  • Public housing is a collective.
  • Mass transit, (buses, subways, trains, light rail) is collective.
  • City planning is “for the collective good”.

The opposite is individualism. Prvate property. Private profits, profits you can keep. Private decisions. Free markets. Free expression.

  • Automobiles, not city bus systems.
  • Privately owned homes, not government rentals.
  • Contacting and paying a doctor, not using a government card to “pay”.
  • Design your own family education curriculum, that is, home-school.
  • Start a business instead of working at a government factory.
  • Pursue your own career, not one the government assigns you to.

This website gives further information about collectives as employed by the Soviet Union. The quote below is found at the website.

In 1928 Stalin again abolished capitalism.

Collectivization returned to high gear in the early 1930s when Stalin collectivized Soviet agriculture. This ruthless, merciless policy caused the death of perhaps 16,000,000 people, many by execution but most by famine. Seven to nine million were Ukrainians in what appears to be (I am not an expert in this word) genocide.

The Soviets tried to hide the results of the collectivization: famine, starvation, and death. But, despite corrupt, lazy, incompetent reporting, word eventually leaked to the West.

Since then collectivization has had a terrible reputation.

Recently, collectivization is being rehabilitated. Social policies and intervention give ever more power to the government.

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One Response

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