Cowardly Critics of TikTok Hide Behind Vladimir Lenin

As TikTok-banning conservatives reveal just how situational their belief in limited government is, some are hiding behind Vladimir Lenin to justify their apostasy. Lenin famously asserted that the “The capitalists will sell us the rope with which we will hang them.”

Missed by conservatives about Lenin’s quip is that it never had any validity. Lest they forget, communist countries had to guard their own borders to make sure their people didn’t escape the communism they plainly couldn’t stand.

The simple truth, albeit one glossed over by conservatives ever-ready to lie prostrate before big, overreaching government, is that people get it. And in particular they get just how horrid actual communism is.

Lenin’s former Soviet Union shows us why. Contra his absurd suggestion that capitalism and freedom would lose to communism and its attendant desperation, the Soviet people knew. Americans were aware of this based on the rare Soviet ever lucky enough to escape to the U.S., or visit the U.S. on official government business. The Soviets who made it here would, upon arrival, react to the “department store cornucopias of the west” like “coiled springs” according to Hedrick Smith’s The Russians. Some were so overwhelmed by capitalism’s endless fruits that they fainted in store aisles.

As for the Soviets who couldn’t get out of their own communist hellhole, readers would be wise to Google “the first McDonald’s in Moscow” to see the passionate frenzy of sickeningly deprived Soviets in response to the arrival of this powerful symbol of Americana. Again, the people got it and they get it. Contra crybaby conservative pundits who’ve decided the American people must have their freedom taken from them so that they can be free, communism never achieved mass appeal. Logically it didn’t. What crushes freedom and opportunity never does.

What does have mass appeal around the world is the United States. While American conservatives bite their nails about an app that they fear could turn Americans against their own country, actual people around the world yearn for American-style freedom and the abundance that always and everywhere associates with freedom. This includes the people in China.  

The density of Americana like McDonald’s, Apple and Starbucks in every Chinese city is all the evidence we need that the Chinese people love all things American, and better yet, that the CCP can’t even brainwash its own people into hating the U.S. Think about this as conservatives warn us about the TikTok threat, and the need to trample on U.S. freedoms to protect Americans from the alleged threat. No app from any company or any country stands a chance against the United States, the most powerful symbol of freedom and prosperity the world has ever known.  

Sadly, American politicians seemingly don’t trust the American people or the genius of capitalism and freedom enough to withstand speech and content they allege is negative about both. How insulting to the American people. Worse for U.S. politicians, their insults will backfire.

To see why, consider the excellent 2014 book about China, Age of Ambition. In it, author Evan Osnos reported that while typical Chinese search engines expressly hide the Tiananmen Square massacre, any Chinese individual with passable computer skills can read all about Tiananmen and its horrid truths in China, and on the internet. The Chinese people yet again get it, and see through the lies of their own political class.

And just as the Chinese people maneuver around CCP censors to find the truth in China, so will Americans work around their own wannabe censors in the U.S. The U.S. political class won’t succeed in stopping TikTok’s use, but they will succeed in shrinking themselves and respect for the law in the United States.

Republished from RealClear Markets


  • John Tamny

    John Tamny is a popular speaker and author in the U.S. and around the world. His speech topics include "Government Barriers to Economic Growth," "Why Washington and Wall Street are Better Off Living Apart," and more.

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