Yesterday I unequivocally condemned Joe Stack's brutal plane crash into the Echelon Building in Austin, Texas, which housed Federal IRS offices. I explained that regardless of his anti-tax philosophy, he does not speak for the libertarian or Tea Party movement, and that his actions are certainly inconsistent with those movements.
My mistake was to think that Joe Stack even presumed to speak as a libertarian. He did not. After a very close reading of his online diatribe today (full text here), it is very clear to me that his entire work was one of the most strongly leftist, most Marxist things I had read in some time. His fundamental complaint is the exploitation of the poor and working classes by the ruling class, and his fundamental purpose was to encourage and foment a violent overthrow thereof.
At no point does he oppose taxation or the redistribution of wealth on principle, certainly not from libertarian principles. At no point for instance, does he quote Hayek or Locke (though he conspicuously channels Marx). He never says- as a libertarian or Tea Partier would- that there should be no special interests in government. Instead he simply lobbies for his interests and laments for the plight of his own special interest group- the working class poor.
I would like to see direct condemnations of Joe Stack's actions by the left. I would like to see them vocally distance themselves from his radical, Marxist agenda to violently overthrow the ruling class and forcibly seize justice for the proletariat. I would like to see a little more embarrassment from the commentators on the Huffington Post, DailyKos, and even here at this blog, who gleefully demand to see Tea Partiers and libertarians cower, and cry, and blush, and beg forgiveness for the consequences of their ideas, because yesterday's attack was the bitter fruit of leftist thought, not Tea Party activism.
Joe Stack made it no clearer than in his concluding remarks, a contrast of communism and capitalism in clear favor of the former: "The communist creed: From each according to his ability, to each according to his need. The capitalist creed: From each according to his gullibility, to each according to his greed." Did you get that? The Joe Stack plane crash in Austin, Texas was motivated by anti-capitalism. So those of you who want me to take responsibility for Stack, can go troll around Michael Moore's website. Just stop the lies, lies, lies.
For yet more evidence, I have compiled a list of quotes from the Stack Manifesto (full text here) below:
Joe Stack rants against big business:
Why is it that a handful of thugs and plunderers can commit unthinkable atrocities (and in the case of the GM executives, for scores of years) and when it’s time for their gravy train to crash under the weight of their gluttony and overwhelming stupidity, the force of the full federal government has no difficulty coming to their aid within days if not hours? ...The rates are 1/3 of what I was earning before the crash, because pay rates here are fixed by the three or four large companies in the area who are in collusion to drive down prices and wages… and this happens because the justice department is all on the take and doesn’t give a fuck about serving anyone or anything but themselves and their rich buddies...
Joe Stack channels Democrat Alan Grayson:
Yet at the same time, the joke we call the American medical system, including the drug and insurance companies, are murdering tens of thousands of people a year and stealing from the corpses and victims they cripple, and this country’s leaders don’t see this as important as bailing out a few of their vile, rich cronies.
Joe Stack condemns health care reform obstructionists:
Yet, the political “representatives” (thieves, liars, and self-serving scumbags is far more accurate) have endless time to sit around for year after year and debate the state of the “terrible health care problem”. It’s clear they see no crisis as long as the dead people don’t get in the way of their corporate profits rolling in.
Joe Stack rants against organized religion:
In particular, zeroed in on a section relating to the wonderful “exemptions” that make institutions like the vulgar, corrupt Catholic Church so incredibly wealthy. We carefully studied the law (with the help of some of the “best”, high-paid, experienced tax lawyers in the business), and then began to do exactly what the “big boys” were doing (except that we weren’t steeling from our congregation or lying to the government about our massive profits in the name of God)... The intent of this exercise and our efforts was to bring about a much-needed re-evaluation of the laws that allow the monsters of organized religion to make such a mockery of people who earn an honest living.
Joe Stack channels John Edwards' Two Americas:
However, this is where I learned that there are two “interpretations” for every law; one for the very rich, and one for the rest of us…
Joe Stack and the proletariat:
My neighbor was an elderly retired woman (80+ seemed ancient to me at that age) who was the widowed wife of a retired steel worker. Her husband had worked all his life in the steel mills of central Pennsylvania with promises from big business and the union that, for his 30 years of service, he would have a pension and medical care to look forward to in his retirement. Instead he was one of the thousands who got nothing because the incompetent mill management and corrupt union (not to mention the government) raided their pension funds and stole their retirement.
Joe Stack calls for violent revolution- very Marxist:
I can only hope that the numbers quickly get too big to be white washed and ignored that the American zombies wake up and revolt; it will take nothing less. I would only hope that by striking a nerve that stimulates the inevitable double standard, knee-jerk government reaction that results in more stupid draconian restrictions people wake up and begin to see the pompous political thugs and their mindless minions for what they are. Sadly, though I spent my entire life trying to believe it wasn’t so, but violence not only is the answer, it is the only answer. The cruel joke is that the really big chunks of shit at the top have known this all along and have been laughing, at and using this awareness against, fools like me all along.
Joe Stack Concludes:
The communist creed: From each according to his ability, to each according to his need.
The capitalist creed: From each according to his gullibility, to each according to his greed.