Communism and Christianity: twin ideologies 27

Communism and Christianity are ideologically identical in a fundamental assumption: that ultimate virtue lies in the sacrifice of the individual to the supposed good of the community.

There are other salient resemblances between them, vivid in their histories; most notably a reach for totalitarian control and the punishing of dissent; but what they similarly do, for the Party or for the Church, is always in the name of their similar communitarian ethic.

The United States of America was founded on an opposite fundamental principle: that the individual is of paramount importance; that each should be free to act in his own best interests provided only that he does not impinge on the freedom of his fellow citizen. Those words are not used in the Constitution, but it is what the Constitution is all about, establishing a rule of law to protect individual liberty. That is what the rule of law is for. Where the individual citizen is free to strive lawfully for his own welfare, the nation as a whole flourishes and prospers. That was what was visualized by the founders, and they were proved right. (The paramountcy of individual freedom does not of course preclude necessary co-operation, to keep foreign enemies of the nation at bay with a strong military, or to provide conveniences that large numbers of citizens need in their particular localities such as street lighting, sewerage, transport. Nor does it exclude voluntary philanthropy.)

The United States of America came to embody the ideal of freedom. But the ideal seems to be fading. President Obama is a Communist by upbringing and choice, and has manifestly tried to turn America towards Communism by means of government-enforced wealth redistribution.

The apparent alternative to Obama at this point in the presidential election year is Rick Santorum. The picture at the top of this article suggests that this ardent Catholic stands more than anything else for Communism’s twin ideology, Christianity.

If that is the case, we need to ask: is there no one who will stand for freedom?