See also quotes about Communism.
Today communism exists only in a few nations. Some of the warnings you’ll find on FrihedenUnderPres.dk came at a time in history where there had been two world wars and communism was on the rise around the world.
A short retrospective
China came under the control of Mao Zedong’s Communist Army in 1949 and in June 1950, North Korea attacked South Korea supported by China and the Soviet Union.
In Europe, the communist party in France was at that time one of the largest left-wing parties in a number of national elections from 1945 to 1960. In the 1970s, they were falling behind the socialist party. At the same time, France was also involved in a conflict against Ho Chi Minh’s communist guerrilla army in Indochina (Vietnam).
In Italy, the Communist Party (PCI) also had a major membership boost. In the 1970s, about one-third of the Italian voters voted on PCI (Partito Comunista Italiano), which in 1947 had 2.3 million members and thus was the largest communist party in the West.
Although many in the West rejected the brutality of the Soviet form of socialism, many were convinced that socialism under the leadership of Joseph Stalin in the Kremlin was the future. Some form of socialist economic planning would be inevitable, whether it came under democratic planning in a free society or had totalitarian features.
After World War II came the fall of the wall and today there are only a few totalitarian regimes in the world. Before the fall of the wall, 1/3 of the countries in the world had totalitarian governance.
Our Time – An Era of Freedom
Today there is democracy in many countries and there has been peace for relatively many years. This could make us believe that God’s opponent has given up or postponed his plan to “overthrow the freedom of all lands, nations, and countries” (Ether 8:25), that all is well, and that the risk of losing our freedoms today is minimal.
All is Not Well
By thinking so, don’t we make the same mistake as the people at the time of Isaiah? It must have been difficult for them to believe in Isaiah’s prophecy (Isaiah 13:19) that the great and mighty city of Babylon, this great commercial center, would be destroyed and fall. Or as the Nephites in ancient America. Didn’t they trust in the arm of flesh, in a false sense of security, when they rejected Nephi’s prophecy that God’s punishment would come upon them because of their iniquities? They said, “We know that this is impossible, for behold, we are powerful, and our cities great, therefore our enemies can have no power over us” (Helaman 8:5-6).
Russell M. Nelson:
The remarkable crumbling of communism now brings us to a new era of freedom without the foe to which we have been accustomed virtually all of our lives. But as the zealous fervor for communism wanes, so might the zealous fervor for democracy also fade. That risk is real.
Voices of Warning
Many of the leaders of the Church have lifted their voice of warning, not only against communism or isms in their most extreme form but against the failure of too much government. (Insights from My Life, p. 196. See Neal A. Maxwell). Ezra Taft Benson has warned that redistribution of wealth through taxation is socialism per. definition (See Ezra Taft Benson 2 – the middle of the page). He called the welfare state creeping socialism and said that a good measure of the degree of socialism in a country is how large a percentage or share of people’s income is transferred and used by the state (See also The Welfare state – Creeping Socialism). J. Reuben Clark Jr. said that whether the state takes through expropriation or taxation, it is actually the same that happens. It’s a mere matter of method. (Prophet Statesmen, J. Reuben Clark Jr. 1938 Vital Speeches – See Se J. Reuben Clark Jr. – Quote: “This earth-wide conflict..” ).
Socialisme through Evolution
Socialism through revolution is the goal of the Communists. They know that today they can’t achieve the population’s support for socialism through revolution. Therefore they instead seek to reach their goal through evolution. They use the salami method (Fabian Socialism: Creeping Socialism). The goal is through democratic means, progressive reforms and nationalization of industries, through a slow and gradual development, to increase the bureaucratic control of the state, and change it into a “welfare state.” (Se The Welfare State – Creeping Socialism).
Ezra Taft Benson:
The aim and purpose.. was then and is now world socialism, which communism seeks to achieve through revolution and which socialists seek to achieve through evolution.
Socialism – A Transition Stage On the Road to Communism
John Strachey, a member of the British labor party, a former member of the communist party as well, and later Minister of War, said:
It is impossible to establish communism as the immediate successor to capitalism. It is accordingly proposed to establish socialism as something which we can put in the place of our present decaying capitalism. Hence, communists work for the establishment of socialism as a necessary transition stage on the road to communism.
Today it happens more subtly and under cover. Socialism is a transition stage on the road to communism, and the welfare state is creeping socialism. (See Socialism).
Mao Zedong, former president of the Communist Party in China, said:
Taken as a whole, the Chinese revolutionary movement led by the Communist Party embraces the two stages, i.e., the democratic and the socialist revolutions, which are essentially different revolutionary processes, and the second process can be carried through only after the first has been completed. The democratic revolution is the necessary preparation for the socialist revolution, and the socialist revolution is the inevitable sequel to the democratic revolution. The ultimate aim for which all communists strive is to bring about a socialist and communist society.
This should make the alarm bell ring for us – a human or a nation that is building on a foundation of sand will fall eventually. As this development happens gradually over a period of many years, we often do not perceive it. We may feel safe in the welfare society in which we live. We may be happy with it and even compare it to the United Order. But we should ask ourselves what the source of this feeling of security is? Does it come from the Spirit of God? (See Socialism and the United Order Compared).
Marion G. Romney:
The tragic and fatal weakness in the posture of the Western world is precisely the same as it is in the world of Communism namely, reliance upon uninspired human wisdom. The difference is in degree, not in essence. The course of Communism and the present course of the Western nations will eventually bring us to slavery, despair, and destruction — the inevitable end of every person, nation, and civilization which persists in refusing to seek the guidance of the Holy Spirit.
That we have experienced a long period with democracy and relative peace in many countries, the wall fell etc., isn’t because Lucifer no more wants “To overthrow the freedom of all lands, nations, and countries” (Ether 8:25). We attribute democracy, peace and human rights, to God’s blessings and impact on history (See Democracy | Dangers that Threaten Society | Liberty | Freedom versus Compulsion).
Ezra Taft Benson:
In a republic the real danger is that we may slowly slide into a condition of slavery of the individual to the state rather than entering this condition by a sudden revolution.
The Consequences of Transgressing Eternal Laws are No Different Today
The consequences of violating eternal laws are no different today than they were in ancient times. (Se Learn from History). Where in the cycle do we find ourselves today?
M. Russell Ballard:
Righteousness followed by prosperity, followed by material comforts, followed by greed, followed by pride, followed by wickedness and a collapse of morality until the people brought calamities upon themselves.