[Colonel Andrew Finlayson is a 1966 graduate of the U. S Naval Academy who served 26 years in the US Marine Corps as an infantry officer. Now retired, he is the author of Killer Kane: A Marine Long-Range Recon Team Leader in Vietnam, 1967-1968 and Rice Paddy Recon: A Marine Officer’s Second Tour in Vietnam, 1968-1970.]
In today’s politically charged and divisive atmosphere, many Americans are confused about what is happening to our institutions and why this is happening. To fully understand this, one should not rely on the normal opinion makers since they are woefully ignorant of the causes or they have an interest in confusing the public in order to advance the agenda of those who would fundamentally change America.
Perhaps, a little history is needed to get at the truth.
To understand what is happening today, we must look at the origin of the current movement to change our country. The origin lies in the anti-capitalist, pro-socialist movements that began in the 19th century. For Americans, this began with the New Harmony experiment, a socialist commune established in Indiana by the British socialist, Robert Owen, in 1825. Owen believed that the ills of society would never be cured unless the three evils of “property, religion, and marriage” were abolished and replaced by a society where everyone shared equally in the collective labor of that society. His experiment failed after just two years due to what his son called the anger of the people doing the work over the people who did little or no work yet derived an equal share in the fruits of that labor. Like all socialist experiments, New Harmony failed because it ran counter to human nature and the tendency for all people to seek personal economic advancement and to resent those who did less work yet benefitted from the hard work of others. It simply did not provide a cure for the perceived ills of society.