A Mom’s Research (Part 4): Why Are Many Elites Leftists?
“Why are all successful people leftists?” my daughter said, challenging me with a smile.
“Not all of them. Those leftists are just very loud,” I replied.
However, it’s true that many among the ultra-wealthy are leftists. Why? I have to find the answer, because many young people look up to them and believe that their beliefs are in line with the truth.
I’m also curious about one thing: Why do these elites support communist radicals, while the radicals do things like smashing their stores and even putting up a guillotine outside of Bezos’s home?
After reading quite a few insightful books, I learned that what’s happening now is nothing new. Since the late 19th century, Western elites have been fascinated with communism and supported its cause. In the pursuit of such utopian ideals, traditional values have been trashed; America has been brought to the brink of socialism; and hundreds of millions of people around the world have been thrown to the bloodthirsty communist beast.
Even now, this pursuit is ongoing.
Alliance of Western Elites and Russian Communist Revolutionaries
Antony C. Sutton (1925–2002) was a British-American economist, historian, professor at California State University, and research fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University. His books “Wall Street and the Bolshevik Revolution” and “Western Technology and Soviet Economic Development” detailed Western elites’ seemingly incomprehensible support of Soviet Bolsheviks. In a 1987 interview, Sutton summarized his findings:
“They [Lenin and Trotsky] created a revolution with no more than about 10,000 revolutionaries. They needed assistance from the West, and they got assistance from Germany, from Britain, and from the United States. … In 1918, the Bolsheviks really only controlled Moscow and what was Petrograd, which is now Leningrad. They could not have beaten off the White Russians, the Czechs who were in Russia at that time, the Japanese who entered. They could not have beaten it off without assistance from the United States and from Britain.
“After the revolution … they [the Bolsheviks] could not operate the plants. So what do we do? With Averell Harriman and the Chase National Bank and all friends on Wall Street, they go in there. … We have these 250–300 concessions with which American companies went into Russia, and they started up the idle plants. … All these top capitalists went in and they got Russia going on behalf of the Bolsheviks, because the Bolsheviks either shot or kicked out all the people out of Russia who would run the plants.”
In his book “National Suicide: Military Aid to the Soviet Union,” Sutton quoted U.S. State Department Decimal File 033.1161, a June 1944 statement by Averell Harriman, a Wall Street financier and the U.S. ambassador to the Soviet Union at the time:
“Stalin paid tribute to the assistance rendered by the United States to Soviet industry before and during the war. He said that about two-thirds of all the large industrial enterprises in the Soviet Union had been built with United States help or technical assistance.”
Trade and technology exports continued during the Cold War, including the eras of the Korean and Vietnamese wars. Sutton quoted Shirley Sheibla’s writing in Barron’s Weekly on Jan. 4, 1971: “The United States has been the ‘arsenal for communism’ in the Soviet Union.” Most weapons, tanks, and trucks of North Korean and North Vietnamese communists were provided by the Soviet Union, and “were produced in plants erected and equipped by American and European companies.”
Since the presidency of Woodrow Wilson, trade with the USSR had been promoted as a way to “mellow” the Bolsheviks and relax their totalitarian control. Obviously, it didn’t work. The world was on the brink of nuclear war between the Soviet Union and the United States throughout the Cold War. Nevertheless, this policy has lasted for more than 70 years. Why?
Why Did Western Elites Support Communism?
With the rapid development of science and technology since the 18th century, people started to drift away from belief in God and believe that humans could take care of everything. With certain arrangements or planning, some people thought, humankind could get rid of all their suffering and build a paradise on earth. Different socialist and communist thoughts mushroomed from this way of thinking.
According to the 1966 book “Tragedy and Hope” by professor Carroll Quigley of Georgetown University, it was an Oxford professor named John Ruskin who first began instilling socialist thoughts into his students, in 1870. After graduation, these students entered high society in the UK and its colonies, spreading Ruskin’s thoughts far and wide.
Meanwhile, in the United States, a man named Richard Ely was hired as the director of the Department of Political Economy at Johns Hopkins University, where he also served as a professor, in 1881. He was trained in Germany and was enthusiastic about the welfare state idea. According to financial researcher Stephen Soukup’s book “The Dictatorship of Woke Capital: How Political Correctness Captured Big Business,” Ely’s thoughts would change American politics dramatically, especially through his disciple, Woodrow Wilson—the 28th U.S. president.
By the early 20th century, socialist ideas had conquered the minds of those at the top of the financial, industrial, academic, and political realms. The elites never saw communism as an enemy due to holding similar utopian obsessions. Instead, communist radicals were considered a force that they could harness—like a wrecking ball—on their way to tearing down old structures and building a new world.
Through interlocked organizations and foundations supported by Wall Street, the elites have had a direct influence on government policies for some time. Take, for example, two of the organizations: the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) and the Institute of Pacific Relations (IPR).
A September 1961 article in the Christian Science Monitor indicated that “almost half of the Council [CFR] members have been invited to assume official government positions or to act as consultants at one time or another.” Rene A. Wormser, general counsel of the 83rd U.S. Congress’s Reece Committee, pointed out that CFR “became virtually an agency of the government when World War II broke out” and “overwhelmingly propagandize[d] the globalist concept.”
The IPR was established in many Pacific nations in 1925. According to Quigley:
“Most of these awards for work in the Far Eastern area required approval or recommendation from members of IPR. … And, finally, there can be little doubt that consultant jobs on Far Eastern matters in the State Department or other government agencies were largely restricted to IPR-approved people.”
The IPR was found by Congress to be “virtually an organ of the Communist Party of the United States,” according to Wormser.
The power of CFR and IPR—aside from the influences posed by other Wall Street organizations and foundations—explains why the appeasement policy toward the Soviet Union lasted for decades. This is also the reason why China and Eastern European countries were conceded to the communist grip after World War II, according to the book “The Naked Capitalist” by W. Cleon Skousen.
Another Similarity Between Elites and Communist Radicals
To understand better the relationship between elites and communists, we have to set aside the influence of Karl Marx.
Marx used simplified categories to characterize people and make every relationship a class struggle. To him, the bourgeoisie, or capitalists, and proletarians, or working-class people, are innate enemies—like day and night or black and white. This is quite misleading. Not all proletarians are the same, and not all bourgeoisie are the same. Most capitalists compete honestly in the market, while a small number of them—the monopolists—”go political” and “make society work for them,” according to Sutton.
To monopolists, laissez-faire entrepreneurs and free-market capitalists are quite annoying. According to Sutton’s book “Wall Street and FDR,” Wall Street financiers use words like “destructive,” “dog-eat-dog,” and “blind” to describe competition. They prefer enforced “cooperation” or economic planning, while they serve as the planners or rule-makers themselves.
Frederic C. Howe described the monopolists’ mentality vividly in his 1906 book “The Confessions of a Monopolist”:
“These are the rules of big business. They have superseded the teachings of our parents and are reducible to a simple maxim: Get a monopoly; let Society work for you; and remember that the best of all business is politics, for a legislative grant, franchise, subsidy or tax exemption is worth more than a Kimberly or Comstock lode, since it does not require any labor, either mental or physical, for its exploitation.”
In an economic sense, we can see a common characteristic between elites and communist radicals: They both want to get something for nothing through political control, either by robbing and killing to take other people’s property or by using political means to gain huge wealth through monopoly.
In other words, although their success was gained in free societies, the elites prefer political systems with tight government control, be it Soviet socialism or national socialist regimes—like Nazi Germany or the current Chinese Communist Party (CCP)—because totalitarian nations have something unavailable in liberal democracies: mighty powerbrokers with whom the elites can ally to gain monopolies.
In his book “Wall Street and the Rise of Hitler,” Sutton used detailed evidence to show how Wall Street paved the way for Adolf Hitler, fueled World War II, and gained huge profits.
The appeasement policy toward the Soviet Union has also been extended to the CCP regime since the 1970s. This policy likely would have continued had it not been stopped by President Donald Trump, despite the CCP being perceived as the No. 1 threat to the United States.
From the Past to the Present
Time flies. In the 21st century, huge asset-management companies seem to be more powerful than the hereditary banking dynasties. The recently wealthy technology company leaders overshadow the CEOs for Ford or General Motors. People change. Companies change. But the leftist ideology that many of them embrace remains the same, thanks to a century of brainwashing through education and media.
A popular concept nowadays is the idea of a new world order. However, it’s nothing new. It was talked about at the end of both world wars and the Cold War, and again in 2008. Establishing a new world order has always been a lucrative target of those international elites, as mentioned in “Tragedy and Hope”:
“The powers of financial capitalism had another far-reaching aim, nothing less than to create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole.”
The rising power of the Chinese communist regime is the driving force to replace the current rule-based world order built upon liberal democracy. The prestigious World Economic Forum (WEF) has talked about the necessity of change for years. While admiring the “spectacular rise of China,” it dismissed democracies as “lack[ing] the incentive systems to address higher-order and longer-term imperatives.”
The COVID-19 pandemic that began in 2020 was seen by some elites as a rare opportunity to reshuffle the cards. A new slogan—“The Great Reset”—has been used as the theme in WEF’s 2020 and 2021 annual meetings. Klaus Schwab, founder of WEF, put it this way:
“To achieve a better outcome, the world must act jointly and swiftly to revamp all aspects of our societies and economies, from education to social contracts and working conditions. Every country, from the United States to China, must participate, and every industry, from oil and gas to tech, must be transformed.
“In short, we need a ‘Great Reset’ of capitalism.”
Sounds scary, right? The Green New Deal proposed by radical leftists fits perfectly within this vision, as one of the justifications for the Great Reset is global warming.
You may ask, why do the elites push for the Great Reset? How would they benefit from it?
Remember, when the world order is revamped, old structures will be dismantled, new industries will be established, and new markets will be explored. Those with ties to the higher echelons of power have ample opportunity to profit handsomely from the process, though countless others will fall between the cracks in the restructuring, such as the workers of the Keystone XL pipeline.
According to Justin Haskins, the editorial director of The Heartland Institute, the general idea of the Great Reset is that “we need a form of socialism—a word the World Economic Forum has deliberately avoided using, all while calling for countless socialist and progressive plans.” Isn’t that a leftist elitist’s dream come true?
Ida Auken, a WEF Young Global Leader, depicted the future society the WEF has in store for the world:
“Welcome to the year 2030. Welcome to my city—or should I say, ‘our city.’ I don’t own anything. I don’t own a car. I don’t own a house. I don’t own any appliances or any clothes.
“It might seem odd to you, but it makes perfect sense for us in this city. Everything you considered a product, has now become a service. We have access to transportation, accommodation, food, and all the things we need in our daily lives. One by one all these things became free, so it ended up not making sense for us to own much.
“Shopping? I can’t really remember what that is. For most of us, it has been turned into choosing things to use.
“Once in a while, I get annoyed about the fact that I have no real privacy. Nowhere I can go and not be registered. I know that, somewhere, everything I do, think, and dream of is recorded.”
A typical utopian picture with a contemporary twist, wouldn’t you say? It’s the same dream that leftists have pursued for over a century, and the same dream that has been used to justify the killings of millions of people.
The scary part is, it’s no longer a dream, but something ready to be forced down everyone’s throats. With a new standard proposed by the WEF—environmental, social, and governance (ESG) metrics—powerful investment funds in Wall Street are using their leverage to force Western public companies to conform to their values. Soukup captured its essence brilliantly:
“Why, the utopian investor asks, should we measure the success of a company exclusively in terms of the number of smartphones it sells every quarter, multiplied by the cost of a smartphone, minus the costs associated with making and distributing those smartphones? Why shouldn’t we define success to include our beliefs and our values? Why shouldn’t we add another variable to the equation, one that measures the ‘footprint’ associated with the manufacture and distribution of the smartphones? Why shouldn’t we demand—given the power our control of capital grants us—that our values be reflected in the investment of that capital? Why shouldn’t we insist that our values—religious in nature and unpopular in the voting booths—be the standard for participation in our system?
“That, in a nutshell, is the ESG movement.”
To young people who hold the same leftist beliefs and values: If you are moved to tears by the promises the elites make, think twice. They don’t mean it.
Morality or Ambition?
The leftists usually measure others with the moral standard they define. They sneer at conservatives for their clinging to God, guns, and the Constitution. In reality, they’re not very serious about their own “moral standard.”
Soukup’s book dissected the words and actions of the CEOs of the world’s most powerful companies. Some of them might be “utopian fundamentalists,” but they wouldn’t hesitate to break or even reverse their commitments if their interests required them to do so. I would like to provide some examples listed in his book, as well as other sources:
BlackRock is the world’s largest asset-management company and the leader of the ESG movement. Its CEO, Larry Fink, imposes his social ideals on a lot of companies through the company’s incredible capital power.
However, please note that while BlackRock manages that capital, it doesn’t own it. Soukup pointed out in an interview with Epoch Times reporter Joshua Philipp: “It’s your money, it’s my money, it’s the guy who invests in his 401K at work, the guy who invests in his IRA—it’s their money that BlackRock is using to control the market and to try to impose its beliefs about where business should go, and how it should operate politically. It’s our money that they’re using to impose their will on the markets, and, essentially, on the American people.”
While BlackRock forces American companies to fulfill its sustainability standard, it imposes no such requirement on Chinese companies. This is because “China will be one of the biggest opportunities for BlackRock over the long term,” according to Fink.
Soukup also pointed out that BlackRock is the largest shareholder of PetroChina, a state-owned Chinese petroleum company that is not only “un-green,” but also funded by Sudan’s Omar al-Bashir regime, which practices modern-day black slavery and has been termed “a State Department-sanctioned state sponsor of terrorism.”
Tim Cook, CEO of Apple Inc., is an ardent advocate for “racial justice and equality.” However, according to a New York Times report on Nov. 30, 2020, Apple is one of a few multinational companies that lobbied to weaken the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act. Uyghur Muslims in China are suffering genocide by the CCP, according to a State Department report released on March 31. Apple is one of 82 companies that have potentially benefited from Uyghur forced labor, according to the Australian Strategic Policy Institute’s March 2020 report. In addition, the cobalt used in the batteries of Apple products are mainly mined from the Democratic Republic of Congo, which uses child labor.
As for Zuckerberg of Facebook and Dorsey of Twitter—who have been so harsh when it comes to Trump and so “righteous” in defending “social justice”—they dare not raise an eyebrow toward Secretary General Xi Jinping of the CCP. In fact, in order to please the Chinese communist regime and gain access to the vast Chinese market, Zuckerberg jogged in smoggy Tiananmen Square, had a pleasant meeting with the CCP’s propaganda chief, Liu Yunshan, and approached Xi personally to ask him to name his unborn child.
Dorsey is no better. Reports show that Twitter removed some Chinese dissidents’ accounts right before the 30th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square massacre in 2019. While Chinese state-affiliated media accounts claimed that the origin of COVID-19 was frozen food products from Europe and received no warning from Twitter, tweets from Rudy Guiliani and Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro mentioning the effectiveness of hydroxychloroquine in treating the disease were removed. They were accused of “spreading misinformation.”
Google is a similar hypocrite. With the motto “Do no evil,” it shows no hesitation in working with China’s top state-sponsored university, Tsinghua University, on its artificial intelligence (AI) technology. Some departments of Tsinghua are under the direct leadership of the CCP’s Defense Science and Industry Committee. Peter Thiel, the co-founder of Paypal, once asked the employees in Google’s AI division if its technology would be used against Uyghurs. The answer he received was “Well, we don’t really know, and don’t ask any questions.” However, the U.S. Department of Defense was the recipient of completely different treatment by the tech giant. In 2018, the year Google partnered with Tsinghua, the company halted its contract with the Pentagon to prevent its AI technology from being used for military purposes.
Hollywood studios and companies set themselves up as the leftist standard-bearers and orchestrate all kinds of protests against conservative legislation. However, they are happy to follow any of the CCP’s demands in order to gain access to the Chinese market. The Walt Disney Co. didn’t mind working with the propaganda departments and public security bureau in Xinjiang Province—the region where Uyghurs are detained, tortured, and enslaved—for its movie “Mulan.”
As for the mainstream media, they have become activists working to serve leftist narratives. Sharyl Attkisson, a five-time Emmy Award-winning investigative reporter and a former TV anchor at CBS News, CNN, and PBS, wrote these sad comments in her book “Slanted: How the News Media Taught Us to Love Censorship and Hate Journalism”:
“In [the novel] 1984, the government’s Ministry of Peace conducts war. The Ministry of Love deploys cruel punishment. The Ministry of Truth falsifies historical records.
“In 2020, we have our own versions: Fact-checkers codify slanted opinion. Myth busters dispel truth. Online knowledge is shaped by agenda editors. Free speech is controlled by censorship. The news—isn’t the news. And you aren’t the consumer; you’re the product.”
There’s no need to go on and on. The takeaway message I wish to convey is, don’t blindly trust those “successful” people and their mouthpieces.
What Do I Tell My Daughter?
In 1983, at the Templeton Prize award ceremony in London, Alexander Solzhenitsyn, a survivor of the Soviet gulag system, began his remarks with the following memorable words:
“More than half a century ago, while I was still a child, I recall hearing a number of older people offer the following explanation for the great disasters that had befallen Russia: Men have forgotten God; that’s why all this has happened.
“Since then, I have spent well-nigh 50 years working on the history of our revolution. … But if I were asked today to formulate as concisely as possible the main cause of the ruinous revolution that swallowed up some 60 million of our people, I could not put it more accurately than to repeat: Men have forgotten God; that’s why all this has happened.”
Many prophecies in history predict the dominance of communism and loss of faith before the arrival of the Creator. The communist specter is very deceptive. Not only does it play upon and draw energy from human vices, but it also appeals to people’s compassion with fallacious narratives.
I told my daughter that it’s important for her to know right from wrong in this chaotic period. “What you read, watch, and believe will impact your life decisions. But at the end of the day, it is yourself who is responsible for everything you do and every decision you make. Therefore, be smart, instead of becoming a pawn of those with self-serving motivations, because you cannot blame anyone else when you are judged in this human realm, and beyond.”
Jean Chen is originally from China and writes under a pen name in order to protect her family members there.
Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.