Mao Zedong, Communism, and the USA
40th Anniversary of the Death of Mao Zedong
Next month marks the 40th anniversary of the death of Mao Zedong. Mao lived from 1893-1976 and is the founder of the People’s Republic of China. From the founding of the People’s Republic of China in 1949 until Mao’s death in 1976, he ruled as the country’s autocrat, or dictator. Mao established communism in China, and is responsible for the murder of 48 – 78 million Chinese. Historians think that Mao is the greatest mass murderer in the history of the world, in terms of number of people killed. As China is the most populous country on Earth, and as Communists are against the ideals of the United States of America, it is important to understand the history of Mao.
Mao grew up in one of the wealthiest families in rural China, was an avid reader, and was interested in politics. When Mao was a young man, Chinese rebels fought the emperor and attempted to change the government of China. China had been ruled by an emperor for centuries, and the rebels wanted to establish a republic. Mao joined the rebel army as a soldier. The leader of the rebels was SunYat-sen. Sun Yat-sen established the Republic of China in 1912. Unfortunately, the Republic of China had many problems and didn’t resemble the United States Republic.
Mao Zedong spent the next few years studying philosophers and history and forming his political philosophy. Mao thought he was smarter than others, and that because of this he believed he didn’t have to follow a moral code. He thought that if his actions produced what he thought was good, it didn’t matter if his actions were bad. His father didn’t respect Mao’s intellectual pursuits and stopped paying for Mao’s schooling.
After graduation, Mao moved to Beijing to work and continue studying under a professor he respected and became active in politics. Mao worked in the university library, and increasingly became interested in the ideas of Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels. Marx and Engels had written about communism. According to Communists, everyone should have the same amount of money, receive everything they need, and everyone should serve the state over their family. Communists hated religion, because religious people love God over the state. In 1917, the Communist Party took over in Russia, and Mao started to imagine the same thing happening in China. The Communists in Russia believed that they could do anything they wanted, even murder people, in order to get what they wanted. Russian Communists outlawed religion and murdered tens of millions of people.
Mao Zedong became the leader of the Communist Party of China until his death in 1976. From the 1920s until about 1949, the Communists fought various groups in China for control. On October 1, 1949, Mao founded the People’s Republic of China. Throughout this time, Mao attempted to force China to become the country he imagined. The Communist Chinese outlawed religion, private property, freedom of speech, the right to vote, and other liberties. In order to change China into what he wanted, Mao was involved in the murder of 48 million to 78 million Chinese. We are not exactly sure of the number he killed because of problems involved in record-keeping.
During the Korean War (1950-1953), the Communist North Korea fought the free South Korea, a republic. The United States of America supported the South and China supported the North. At times, Americans were fighting Chinese in Korea. Mao Zedong attempted to establish Communism throughout Korea. In 1953, the war ended with North Korea remaining Communist, and South Korea remaining a free republic. Today, American soldiers still guard South Korea from invasion by North Korea.
Today, over 1.357 billion people are Chinese, and China is still officially a Communist country. In 2016, Chinese enjoy more liberties than when Mao ruled. There are also not the mass murders that existed under Mao. Still, the Communist Party in China has control over all elements of life, Chinese do not get to vote for their leaders, and they are not able to speak or write against the government. Next month marks the 40th year anniversary of the death of one of the most influential persons of the 20th century.
Great Discussion Questions to Ask Your Kids
Stein v. Johnson, Tax Policy
By John De Gree
Besides Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, two other candidates are running for the President of the United States of America: Libertarian Party candidate Gary Johnson and Green Party candidate Jill Stein. The tax policies of these candidates reflect their political philosophies.
According to Johnson’s website, “For far too long, tax laws have been used not just as a means to collect needed revenues, but as a way for special interests to penalize their competitors while subsidizing themselves.” Gary Johnson believes that the U.S. tax policy helps those powerful enough to manipulate it, and hurts the average American. Johnson proposes to eliminate all tax loopholes, all income taxes and payroll taxes and replace it with a single consumption tax. A consumption tax is a tax on what you purchase. Johnson thinks this would save Americans a great deal of time, that it is fair because it treats all people the same, and that it would encourage the American economy to grow.
According to Stein’s website, “My Power to the People Plan creates deep system change, moving from the greed and exploitation of corporate capitalism to a human-centered economy that puts people, planet and peace over profit.” Stein does not have an explicit tax policy, but rather goals that are related to taxes. She wants to “increase government revenues, restore full employment, cut the dangerous military budget, rewrite the entire tax code to be truly progressive with tax cuts for working families, the poor and middle class, and higher taxes for the richest Americans.”
Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson and Green candidate Jill Stein have extremely different political philosophies. Johnson wants to have a minimal government that treats all individuals the same, regardless of their economic position. Stein wants to have a large government that treats individuals differently depending on their economic position. Johnson wants to tax everyone the same percentage of what they purchase. Stein wants to tax those she calls rich and she wants to provide tax cuts for everyone else, though she does not specify what amount of income or worth means someone is rich.
This November, American will choose their President, and one of the variables Americans will decide will be on the tax policies of the various candidates. Johnson’s and Stein’s tax policies are very different from each other.
1. What is Johnson's party and what is his tax plan?
2. What is Stein's party and what is her tax plan?
3. What does Johnson's tax plan tell you about his political philosophy?
4. What does Stein's tax plan tell you about her political philosophy?
5. Which tax policy do you think would make America stronger?
Clinton versus Trump, Tax Policy
On Tuesday, November 8th, Americans will have the opportunity to vote for the next President of the United States of America. There are a number of candidates, but the two main ones are Republican Donald Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton. Each offers a different tax plan for the country. One candidate favors individuals and businesses keeping more of the money they earn and the other candidate favors raising taxes on individuals and businesses. One candidate believes that individuals and businesses make better decisions with their own money and another candidate believes that when a person makes a great deal of money, the government will make better decisions what to do with the money.
Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton plans to raise taxes on individual and business income. Clinton wants to raise taxes to limit tax deductions and to place an extra 4% tax on individuals with incomes over $5 million. This would raise the marginal tax rate on those earning more than $5 million to 43.6%. Clinton wants to enact a minimum 30% minimum tax on individuals. She would like to have the estate tax rise to 45%. The estate tax is tax on a person’s estate after he dies. Clinton would like to raise the top tax on investments (long-term capital gains) to 47.4%.
Presidential candidate Trump plans to lower taxes on individuals and businesses. Trump plans to get rid of the current tax brackets and replace them with three rates: 12%, 25%, and 33%. (Currently, tax rates are 10%, 15%, 25%, 28%, 33%, 35%, and 39.6%. The more a person makes, the higher his tax rate is.) Trump wants to eliminate the investment income surtax. This means he wants investors to not be taxed extra for investing. Trump wants to lower the top corporate tax rate from 39% to 15%. Trump wants to eliminate the estate tax, so that when a person dies, all of his wealth transfers to his family tax free.
The tax plans of the two Presidential candidates and their respective political parties greatly differ from each other. The Republicans and candidate Trump think that lower taxes will allow Americans to keep more of what they make. They think that individuals and businesses will then spend and hire more, and that this would improve the economy. The Democrats and candidate Clinton think that higher taxes will make the wealthier pay more to the government, and the government will be able to take that money and invest it wisely. They think that government leaders will make decisions that improve the lives of Americans.
Great Discussion Questions to Ask Your Kids
9/11, 19 Years Later
On September 11, 2001, 19 Al-Qaida terrorists from various countries in the Middle East and Asia hijacked four airplanes and purposefully crashed them. Two airplanes hit the “Twin Towers” in New York City, one hit the Pentagon in Washington, D.C. and one did not reach its target of the White House because the passengers stopped the terrorist pilots. This plane crash-landed in a field in Pennsylvania. Because of the 9/11 attacks, approximately 3,000 civilians were murdered and America fully entered into the War on Terror.
The terrorists who committed these attacks were part of an international organization called Al-Qaida, a radical Islamic organization. Al-Qaida does not control a country, but its members live in many parts of the world, including the United States of America. These terrorists hate America because the United States supports Israel’s right to exist, and because America represents freedom. Israel is a Jewish country, and the Al-Qaida organization hates Jews. Osama bin Laden was the head of Al-Qaida. He demanded that the U.S.A. stop supporting Israel, and that we remove all of our soldiers from the Arabian Peninsula.
In 2001, Al-Qaida had most of its bases in Afghanistan, a country of Asia. Afghanistan was ruled by a political party called the Taliban. Like Al-Qaida, the Taliban was very extreme in its Islamic beliefs. The Taliban did not allow girls to study or women to have a job. Women had to wear a black robe called a burqa that covered their entire body. When a girl under Taliban control becomes a woman, the Taliban mutilates her body to permanently mark her as less than a man. If you had a book or a newspaper that the Taliban didn’t like, the Taliban soldiers might torture or kill you. If it was thought you were an Afghani Christian, the Taliban would execute you. If you belonged to a minority group, you could be tortured. Punishment for homosexuality or for infidelity for a married woman was execution. The Taliban and Al-Qaida worked, and work, together.
After the attacks on 9/11, President Bush demanded from Afghanistan/The Taliban that it hand over Osama bin Laden to the United States of America. The Taliban refused, and the U.S. launched a war. The Taliban lost the war and the U.S. helped the Afghans establish a republic. The Taliban is still fighting, though. The U.S. has soldiers in Afghanistan and is fighting the Taliban with the Afghan people. At 18 years, the war in Afghanistan has become America's longest war, but by no means it is America's deadliest war.
In 2001, Saddam Hussein was the dictator of Iraq, and the world believed that he was supporting terrorists and that he had dangerous weapons. It was feared he would give terrorists a nuclear bomb or poison gas or some other weapons that the terrorists would then use against Americans. Saddam Hussein threatened the U.S., attempted to kill President George H.W. Bush in a visit to Kuwait, and had defied 16 United Nations resolutions to come clean on his making dangerous weapons. The United States Senate gave President George W. Bush authority to use force to remove Hussein, and he used it. The U.S. launched a war against Hussein, removed him, and established a republic. The Iraqi people tried and executed Hussein as a mass murderer.
President Obama became the leader of the U.S. in 2009 and continued the fight against terrorists in a different way than President Bush. He stated that he wanted the U.S.A. to lead from behind and to disengage in the war in Afghanistan and in Iraq. However, he continued ordering the killing of terrorists. In 2011, he gave the order for Navy Seals to kill the leader of Al-Qaida, Osama bin Laden.
President Obama ordered American soldiers out of Iraq. After the American retreat from Iraq, another terrorist organization, called Daesha (or also ISIS) conquered much of Iraq and Syria. ISIS instituted Sharia Law, the same law that the Taliban ruled with in Afghanistan. Over 1 million refugees fled ISIS and immigrated, mainly to Europe. Some of these refugees are terrorists and have killed Europeans. Once it became clear that ISIS was a threat to Iraq and American interests, President Obama sent American soldiers back into Iraq.
President Trump has continued the fight against terrorists in Iraq, and also has continued the fight against terrorists in Afghanistan. Different from President Obama, Trump has allowed the American military to fully engage the terrorists and be more aggressive. In early 2018, the United States and its allies defeated ISIS in Iraq and Syria. As of today, ISIS holds no territory, cannot collect any taxes, and does not control any oil fields. However, the Taliban is still very active in Afghanistan, killing Afghanis and American soldiers. Although the terrorists do not hold territory, they still are a mortal threat.
American soldiers risk their lives each day fighting radical Islamic terrorists who made a promise to kill Americans. We remember September 11, 2001, as a day of mourning for those innocent civilians killed on American soil and as a day that changed how Americans fight terrorists around the globe.
From the Classical Historian writers and family, we salute members of the United States armed forces, we give thanks for your sacrifice and the sacrifice of your families, and we pray and hope for complete victory over enemies of freedom in the War on Terror, the radical Islamic terrorists. We also give thanks to those teachers and writers who publish the truth about those who aim to kill, torture, and defeat the United States of America and her allies.
1. Who was responsible for the 9/11 attacks on the U.S.A?
2. Who are the Taliban?
3. How did the U.S. respond to these attacks in Afghanistan?
4. Why did the U.S. attack Iraq?
5. What happened after President Obama took U.S. soldiers out of Iraq?
6. What is the current situation in Iraq and Afghanistan?
7. Who are the terrorists trying to take over Iraq, Syria, and Afghanistan? What do they believe in?
8. What has happened to ISIS since President Trump began his presidency?
9. Is the War on Terror over for the United States of America?
10. What is the best way for America to end the War on Terror?
John De Gree
John De Gree writes the current events with a look at the history of each topic. Articles are written for the young person, aged 10-18, and Mr. De Gree carefully writes so that all readers can understand the event. The perspective the current events are written in is Judeo-Christian.
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