Capitalist Propaganda: “Five Key Reasons to Reject Class-Warfare Tax Policy”

Posted on June 18, 2009 1:00 pm

From 2009, a video from the Center for Freedom and Prosperity titled “Five Key Reasons to Reject Class-Warfare Tax Policy” (hat tip: Wintery Knight Blog)

[YouTube direct link]

Although this piece is very informative, I noticed that it lacks the entertainment quality of the classic propaganda from the 40’s & 50’s. No offense, but if they’re going to make these videos, they should hire a trained actor with a deep, rich, authoritative voice.

You know… like Barack Obama.

Interestingly, at the end of this video, they plug the novel “Atlas Shrugged”, which more and more people are talking about, but nobody really wants to read once they find out that it’s 1200 pages long. That’s a BIG time investment.

If you’re wondering whether it’s worth it, try reading one of the “good parts” – Francisco’s “Money Speech”. If you enjoy reading this, chances are you’ll enjoy the rest of the novel, too.

Here’s a 250-word excerpt, courtesy of Capitalism Magazine. The whole 2500 word speech can be found there.

“So you think that money is the root of all evil?” said Francisco d’Anconia. “Have you ever asked what is the root of money? Money is a tool of exchange, which can’t exist unless there are goods produced and men able to produce them. Money is the material shape of the principle that men who wish to deal with one another must deal by trade and give value for value. Money is not the tool of the moochers, who claim your product by tears, or of the looters, who take it from you by force. Money is made possible only by the men who produce. Is this what you consider evil?

“When you accept money in payment for your effort, you do so only on the conviction that you will exchange it for the product of the effort of others. It is not the moochers or the looters who give value to money. Not an ocean of tears not all the guns in the world can transform those pieces of paper in your wallet into the bread you will need to survive tomorrow. Those pieces of paper, which should have been gold, are a token of honor–your claim upon the energy of the men who produce. Your wallet is your statement of hope that somewhere in the world around you there are men who will not default on that moral principle which is the root of money, Is this what you consider evil?”

Read the whole thing at Capitalism Magazine

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28 Responses to “Capitalist Propaganda: “Five Key Reasons to Reject Class-Warfare Tax Policy””

  1. The Wintery Knight teaches capitalism… using short video clips! « Wintery Knight Blog links:

    […] Knight teaches capitalism… using short video clips! UPDATE: Welcome visitors from! Thanks for the link […]

  2. AR says:

    It’s not the 1200 page thing that bothers me, I’ve been reading thousand page novels since middle school, but I’ve heard that it’s really boring, and that the only really good parts are two speeches.

  3. physics geek says:

    Thanks for the link, Harvey. I just finished re-reading Atlas Shrugged a couple of months ago and was struck my how prophetic Rand was. Oh sure, her characters were one dimensional and she couldn’t write much of a plot, but based on her background, Rand was well acquainted with how totalitarianism takes hold.

    One thing, though: Galt’s speech near the end was way, way, way too long. I almost nodded off twice while reading it.

  4. Wintery Knight says:

    Thanks for the link, Harvey!

  5. T.N. Amaps says:

    Who thinks money is the root of all evil? My guess is people that can’t read a bible. If they read 1 Tim 6:10, they’d realize that ‘love of’ money is the root of all ‘kinds’ of evil. Is this the same as the ‘do not judge’ crowd?

  6. Scott says:

    It took me several months in my short-of-free-time schedule. Definitely well worth the time invested.

    That speech by Francisco should be required reading of all children before graduating High School, if not the whole book. My children (12 and 13) are under orders to have Atlas Shrugged read before they graduate High School. No excuses.

  7. Socrates says:

    What T.N. Amaps said.

    Also, I would crawl across a field of cactus infested with fire ants and strewn with iguana dung to escape the sound of Barack Obama’s voice.

  8. DesertElephant says:

    I bought Atlas Shrugged 3 weeks ago. Only thing stopping me from reading it is the 250 pages left in the novel I’m currently reading. Some folks might not be buying the book because even a softcover is $25. I’ve bought softcover novels well over 1200 pages for half the price. Not knocking a man/woman’s desire to get value from the fuits of their labor, but that’s a damned expensive paperback. I still shelled out the $25 though.

  9. DesertElephant says:

    Um… Fruits. That should be Fruits.

  10. Harvey says:

    You can get it used for $10-$15 from Amazon:

    Less on eBay:

  11. Stevend says:

    FWIW – It’s been a long time since a read Ayn Rand, but I remember thinking that The Fountainhead was a better read than Atlas. The same principals applied, but the speeches weren’t quite as padantic and the plot was better.

  12. Harvey says:

    For those who are REALLY short on time, I recommend the movie version of The Fountainhead.

    “This makes one neck, ready for one leash!”

    That line still haunts me every time I hear Obama talk about we need to unite the country.

  13. Doug says:

    Even though I’m a conservative and not an objectivist (that whole rabid atheism thing isn’t for me), I have been fascinated by objectivism – and much of it does appeal to me – ever since reading Rand’s novels. Turns out that since Rand’s death two factions of objectivism have formed. I can’t put my finger on the differences precisely but (where above money speech is linked) is the “everything sucks and you’re stupid” objectivism (go to site and read anything by Edward Cline), whereas is more of an “everything’s cool, can’t we all just be capitalist” objectivism.

  14. Wintery Knight says:

    I am a capitalist, but I agree that the atheistic aspects of objectivism are problematic.

    On atheism, the entire universe is an accident, humans are machines made out of meat with no free will, life ends in the grave. It is hard for me to see why moral values would have an independent existence on atheism. They would more likely be individual preferences, or at best a set of customs accepted by the majority of a society in a particular time and place. On that view, there could be no way of preferring a society that accepts slavery to a society that doesn’t since the society makes the rules. I think an objectivist could act “morally” but that would really mean acting fashionably – in keeping with the customs of the day. Which is not what I mean when I say moral. It’s also hard to see how human rights could be grounded on objectivism, since human beings are all different and are not equal in any way.

    In contrast, theism (including deism and Christian theism), does ground free will, because humans are souls that stand outside of the material body, so that their actions are not determined. Moral values would be grounded in God’s nature, and moral obligations would be owed to the Creator/Designer. Being moral, on theism, means acting consistently with the design of the Creator/Designer made for humans. If you went an extra step and accepted Christianity, then you would also have the afterlife to make the choice to be moral even more rational. Being good on this view means “being the way that we were designed to be”. And human rights are grounded because everyone is equal since they were made by the same Person.

    Not trying to be mean! I think Rand is right about capitalism, but wrong on metaphysics.

  15. Harvey says:

    Doug – that’s the gist of it. Some folks are focused on hammering out philosophical precision, other folks are more concerned with day-to-day applications of known priciples. Sorta like the difference between scientists and engineers.

    WK – Rand was an atheist, but Objectivism and Christianity are NOT mutually exclusive. For example:

  16. Wintery Knight says:

    Ooooh! I will take a look right now! Thank you!

  17. Doug says:

    Yes, thanks for the site!!

  18. Corona says:

    Love of money is one root of evil. Narcissists with visions of power and glory is another.

  19. Anniee451 says:

    One of the most amazing parts of Atlas Shrugged is the Trial of Hank Rearden. I just posted it at my blog the other day under “Required Reading” so I hope some people check it out. It is indeed required reading.

  20. Terry_Jim says:

    Thanks, God
    for the internet and
    ‘Atlas Shrugged’ Cliff Notes.

  21. Terry_Jim says:

    Oops, something blipped.
    Here’s the link.

  22. 4 of 7 says:

    Congressman: “Mr. Dogbert, did you fly a private jet to this hearing?”
    CEO Dogbert: “Yes, the same jet you flew on a fact-finding trip to Bermuda, you wool-suited blob of fat! Anymore questions? I can keep this up all day!”
    Congressman: “I yield the remainder of my time to the hypocrite from another state.”
    – Dilbert, by Scott Adams

    Annie451 – That was my favorite part of the book.

  23. ss396 says:

    Agree with Physics Geek; Galt’s speech was way too long. The looters gang running the government had the attention span of a flea and tuned out anybody speaking contrary to conventional wisdom. She made that point a couple of times. Yet somehow they all sat there and listened to two hours of pure heresy. Hell, how many folks here can’t stand even five minutes of Chris Matthews or Keith Olbermann? Imagine sitting through a two-hour rant by either of them – and then discussing it afterwards!! :::[shudder]::: (Of course, Galt was surely a more compelling speaker than either of those axxwipes clowns pundits (my mother told me to be nice, having read this over my shoulder while she delivered my sandwich to me here in the basement)).

    Rand makes the same mistake that every other Utopian does (yes, she’s a Utopian – look at the emergence from Galt’s Gulch). She believes that the world is perfectable by the actions of mankind. The only way that her vision could work would be if mankind were well-disposed toward fellow man – which we ain’t. (Disagree? Then I am sure that you smile broadly and kindly when that #&@!^## other driver (sorry, mom) cuts you off in traffic.) We are well-disposed toward each other only to the extent that we are not inconvenienced by their actions, which is a pretty low threshold for irritation. On that basis, we are somehow supposed to perfĂ©ct the world…?

  24. Harvey says:

    ss396 – Gotta disagree with “She believes that the world is perfectable by the actions of mankind.”

    She wasn’t trying to write a blueprint for a perfect world, she was trying to illustrate a code of conduct for a good (not perfect) man.

    But mostly what she wanted was for men with creative minds to refuse to let others make them feel guilty FOR THEIR ACCOMPLISHMENTS.

    Cutting someone off in traffic is not an accomplishment, it’s a reckless threat to their life.

    I don’t want people to be well-disposed toward me. I just want them not to go out of their way to impede me while I do what I do best.

  25. Tim says:

    I think Ayn had a misunderstanding regarding the love of money being the root of all evil. If you look at the context of that scripture passage, it is referring, not to the valuation on a man’s labor, but on selfishness. Selfishness is the root of all evil. Selfishness gets in the way of trade and a productive society.

    My favorite quote from Francisco’s speech is this:

    Whenever destroyers appear among men, they start by destroying money, for money is men’s protection and the base of a moral existence. Destroyers seize gold and leave to its owners a counterfeit pile of paper. This kills all objective standards and delivers men into the arbitrary power of an arbitrary setter of values. Gold was an objective value, an equivalent of wealth produced. Paper is a mortgage on wealth that does not exist, backed by a gun aimed at those who are expected to produce it. Paper is a check drawn by legal looters upon an account which is not theirs: upon the virtue of the victims. Watch for the day when it bounces, marked, ‘Account overdrawn.’

    I would argue that the Federal Reserve is the root of all evil in the American capitalist system.

  26. DesertElephant says:

    Selfishness is the root of all evil? You realize that we wouldn’t have near the prosperity we have in the world had folk not been so selfish as to want to gain reward for their risk. Selfishness makes our world go round. Excessive selfishness stops it on its axis. I like to think of myself as selfish but useful.

  27. Captain Obvious says:

    I bought it and read it… took me about a month in my spare time. But it’s an easy to read romantic novel, not some policy wonk’s expositive thesis, so don’t be daunted by the page count, it goes fast.

  28. 4 of 7 says:

    I meant that Hank Rearden’s speach was my favorite part of ‘Atlas Shrugged’, not that CEO Dogbert’s testimony was my favorite part of ‘Dilbert’.
    I added to my favorites list.
    The quiz made my brain stretch.

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