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About the Fabian Society...

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Kakugo Posted: Fri, Jun 20 2008 5:19 AM

 I am currently looking for websites and books describing the history and operate of the Fabian Society and how it managed to transform Britain into one of the world's leading Social Democracies. A neutral approach (ie not Socialist nor Libertarian bias) would be better but anything is welcome.

I also would like to know if there's any studies available about the influence of the Society abroad, particulary in Europe.

Many thanks in advance.

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Juan replied on Fri, Jun 20 2008 9:00 PM
http://fabians.org.uk/debates/the-new-britishness

"Could a New Britishness Unite Us?

The Fabian Society has been central to a significant public debate over how a new Britishness can provide the 'ties that bind' a diverse society together. Our work in this area explores how we maintain the strong sense of collective citizenship, which is necessary for Britain to share common projects, such as a drive to narrow inequalities. "


They seem to be advocating nationalism and socialism ? That's interesting...

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DBratton replied on Fri, Jun 20 2008 9:27 PM

Juan:

They seem to be advocating nationalism and socialism ? That's interesting...

Sounds more like a prelude to the standard everybody-is-a-racist-so-we-need-the-government refrain.

Also, note the funny language. It's not so that people can share common projects but how Britain can share common projects.

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Kakugo replied on Mon, Jun 23 2008 12:35 PM

 Thanks Juan.

While we all know how Fabian Society tactics work pretty much like the tyrant described by Tocqueville by working in small steps and mollifying opposition I am very interest in their influence abroad, and in Continental Europe in particular.

After the old, powerful Communist Parties died out when "Mother Russia" decided to abandon hardcore Marxism the new Left and the new Right shortly rafter began to preach exactly the same admixture of Socialism and Nationalism. Right now there's not a single politician in Europe (perhaps with the exception of a few veteran Communists and Enviromentalists) which doesn't preach exactly the same Fabian doctrine.

That's why I want lo learn more about their influence and their doctrine.

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Juan replied on Mon, Jun 23 2008 4:27 PM
Sorry I don't have any real data to provide. Anyways, maybe a look at this can entertain you for a moment (if you didn't know it already)

http://www.newstatesman.com/

"The New Statesman was created in 1913 with the aim of permeating the educated and influential classes with socialist ideas. Its founders were Sidney and Beatrice Webb..."

February 17 - 1600 - Giordano Bruno is burnt alive by the catholic church.
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ama gi replied on Tue, Jun 24 2008 12:10 AM

Kakugo:

 Thanks Juan.

While we all know how Fabian Society tactics work pretty much like the tyrant described by Tocqueville by working in small steps and mollifying opposition I am very interest in their influence abroad, and in Continental Europe in particular.

After the old, powerful Communist Parties died out when "Mother Russia" decided to abandon hardcore Marxism the new Left and the new Right shortly rafter began to preach exactly the same admixture of Socialism and Nationalism. Right now there's not a single politician in Europe (perhaps with the exception of a few veteran Communists and Enviromentalists) which doesn't preach exactly the same Fabian doctrine.

That's why I want lo learn more about their influence and their doctrine.

I'm rather clueless; what is the Fabian Society and what is the tyrant Tocqueville described?

 

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Kakugo replied on Tue, Jun 24 2008 12:31 PM

ama gi:

Kakugo:

 Thanks Juan.

While we all know how Fabian Society tactics work pretty much like the tyrant described by Tocqueville by working in small steps and mollifying opposition I am very interest in their influence abroad, and in Continental Europe in particular.

After the old, powerful Communist Parties died out when "Mother Russia" decided to abandon hardcore Marxism the new Left and the new Right shortly rafter began to preach exactly the same admixture of Socialism and Nationalism. Right now there's not a single politician in Europe (perhaps with the exception of a few veteran Communists and Enviromentalists) which doesn't preach exactly the same Fabian doctrine.

That's why I want lo learn more about their influence and their doctrine.

I'm rather clueless; what is the Fabian Society and what is the tyrant Tocqueville described?

 

 

 

Here's the passage from Tocqueville's Democracy in America I was referring to:

"The sovereign, after taking individuals one by one in his powerful hands and kneading them to his liking, reaches out to embrace society as a whole. Over it he spreads a fine mesh of uniform, minute, and complex rules, through which not even the most original minds and most vigorous souls can poke their heads above the crowd. He does not break men's wills but softens, bends, and guides them. He seldom forces anyone to act but consistently opposes action. He does not destroy things but prevents them from coming into being. Rather than tyrannize, he inhibits, represses, saps, stifles, and stultifies, and in the end he reduces each nation to nothing but a flock of timid and industrious animals, with the government as its shepherd.

The Fabian Society is a Socialist movement which, instead of aiming at a revolution to bring about their ideals, prefers a slow and progressive approach. Their influence was particulary felt in post-WWII years and today they are still one of Britain's most influential think-tanks. Here's their website: http://fabians.org.uk/ .

Apart from finding out about their influence I am very curious to understand their role in the downfall of the British economy, once a world-leading industrial super-power and now a mere assembly plant for Japanese car makers.

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Juan replied on Tue, Jun 24 2008 1:53 PM
This may be another piece of the puzzle.

The Coming Slavery (The Man Versus the State)

http://mises.org/story/2680

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The Fabian Society began in England in 1887 by a very small group of elitist socialist that sought to reform society gradually into one of socialism instead of through violent revolution. At first their purpose was to be an alternative in Britain for the more dominate Marxist Social-Democratic Federation, but their true goal was to accomplish socialism through a very gradual process using the voting booth and representative democracy as their instrument of change. In fact, one of their symbols is a Turtle with the motto: “When I Strike, I Strike Hard”. Another symbol is the Wolf in Sheep's Clothing and the Globe on an Anvil being hammered into the Fabian model. 

Fabian Plan for gradual Socialist Revolution was as definitive as it possibly could be, to say it has been a conspiracy is simplistic in the extreme. It instituted a widespread educational program for its leadership and its minions, as time progressed, it opened schools, such as the London School of Economics, and the New School of Social Research.

One stroke of genius was that instead of advocating a Socialist State, they instead assisted in the implementation of the Welfare State, which as we should all know is merely a few steps away from a purely Socialistic State. It was, of course, implemented gradually, and played upon the weaknesses of human nature to gain popularity. Unlike the usual Socialist points of views, the Fabians didn’t advocate complete State ownership of businesses, industry, agriculture or land, instead they sought to involve the State into very specific areas of importance such as electric power production, transportation, precious metals and of course, credit. The remaining balance of economic systems would be left to the private sector however; it would be highly regulated by the State and operated according to the wishes of the State.

If you look at Britain, you will see that they accomplished their goals with ease and while American has been more difficult, the goals are the same and they have made enormous advances toward those goals, as we all know. Much of their accomplishments have been realized without using that dreaded word: Socialism. They have brought the system to America through an extremely brilliant system that has been openly accepted by the voters of this country without the hint of suspicion on their part that they were voting a Socialistic system into place.

Now, make no mistake about it, Fabian Socialists are Statist, they are absolutely authoritarian in their philosophy. Their long-term goal has always been a Socialistic Dictatorship with full-imposition of a very legalistic society where the individual is simply a part of the collective. An example of this can be found in the writings of one of the founders of the Fabian Society, George Bernard Shaw speaking of the Socialist Utopia, he said: “Under Socialism, you would not be allowed to be poor. You would be forcibly fed, clothed, lodged, taught, and employed whether you liked it or not. If it were discovered that you had not the character and industry enough to be worth all this trouble, you might possibly be executed in a kindly manner; but whilst you were permitted to live, you would have to live well.”

Of course, all of this would be in the best interest of society as a whole and the whole made up simply of parts, individuals merely cogs in the machine of social justice. This idea of social justice is the biggest selling point and perhaps the easiest to peddle to the people. Programs of social reform, incremental at first, allowed for the tempering of the people; allowing for them to grow accustom to the intervention of the State in the affairs of the individual. Of course, such reforms are never an end unto themselves only stepping-stones to a greater Socialist construct of society.

Regarding the great strides made toward these goals, Max Beer stated with confidence: “There was no reason for Socialists to wait for revolution. The realization of socialism had begun the moment when the State became accessible to social reform ideas.” Indeed, the revolution was already half realized at the moment when the State stepped over the threshold of progressive social construction and intervention into the private lives of the people.

The first step in any Socialist plan is the reform of capitalism, when the capitalist system is sufficiently neutralized the rest comes relatively easy. The first step to an efficient plan of capitalist neutralization is control over the money supply and for that a central bank is required along with a fiat monetary system, in this country that was initiated with the advent of the Federal Reserve. Later, of course must come effective controls over major infrastructure and services, all accomplished through the New Deal. The New Deal accomplished substantial feats toward the Fabian Socialist construct with numerous price controls, quotas, subsidies, inspections, regulations, licenses, fees, penalties and massive government interventions into what was formerly private enterprise. Although you would never hear politicians of either political party to admit to support the ideals of socialism, they nevertheless not only support such measures, but also promote them.

We have recently seen a greater push toward socialism, though few realize it. The government is assuming more and more responsibility for and authority over the economy, all under the guise of protecting the people from potentially unscrupulous free marketeers. We are being moved yet another step closer to the dream-society of the Fabians. Of course, these are simply steps, essential parts to a much broader agenda, one that is authoritarian in nature and execution, even the centrally planned economy is a mere step, not the end product. It is all carefully crafted, manufactured to ensure the most popular support possible for  “people-friendly” solutions while instituting a fraudulent system of central control over the unsuspecting public. The system has been marketed to the public, one specific component at a time, each component essential to the completion of the whole and that is the brilliance of this gradual imposition of Fabian Socialism in this country.

The greatest bulwark against tyranny in America has always been the system of private ownership and free enterprise, it is the cornerstone of our system of government and without it our freedoms and liberty are in jeopardy. Central economic planning is, in a very basic sense, the keystone to Fabian Socialism, for in order for it to succeed, central State planning and control must replace the system of free enterprise. While it was not necessary for the State to actually own or directly control all the elements in the economy it is enough for the State to have the right to assert itself in any area that it deems necessary. The Fabians called it “the democratization of economic power”, in other words socialized and centralized control over economic direction within the country.

In 1942, Stuart Chase, in his book “The Road We Are Traveling” spelled out the system of planning the Fabians had in mind; the interesting thing is to look at that plan in comparison to 2008 America.

1. Strong, centralized government.

2. Powerful Executive at the expense of Congress and the Judicial.

3. Government controlled banking, credit and securities exchange.

4. Government control over employment.

5. Unemployment insurance, old age pensions.

6. Universal medical care, food and housing programs.

7. Access to unlimited government borrowing.

8. A managed monetary system.

9. Government control over foreign trade.

10. Government control over natural energy sources, transportation and agricultural production.

11. Government regulation of labor.

12. Youth camps devoted to health discipline, community service and ideological teaching consistent with those of the authorities.

13. Heavy progressive taxation.

It should be evident that while Socialist no longer use the name that the plan is Socialism at its heart. The Fabian Socialist Revolution began in earnest in this country in 1933 with the imposition of the Welfare State and has been steadily progressing since. Those who are promoting this system, whether in the Republican Party or Democratic Party, are nothing less than Traitors, guilty of a type of high treason that deserves the most punitive penalty for such treachery. Listen carefully to the propositions of both McCain and Obama; I suspect that you will quickly find both of their positions are not only similar, but propose in essence and detail the Fabian Socialist construct. The system that these marauders are imposing upon us will ultimately alter our system of government beyond recognition.

It is all accomplished with the utmost respectability of course, they would not dream of such an imposition without popular support and they will make sure that they have popular support.

In 1933, they proposed that private enterprise had failed leaving the jobless to starve, hope to fade and that the State must step in to save the country and protect the people from the dangers associated with the inherent problems of free enterprise. Today, the call is very similar, the State must step in to protect the people. The Corporate State is, in the minds of Fabians, the ultimate protector of the common man, the provider of security on all fronts. The State is to ultimately be the only one allowed wealth, the problem is that wealth is the people’s wealth confiscated from their hard labor. It is, in essence, a plan for a modern feudal society of peonage and the people are the peons.

"The criterion of truth is that it works even if nobody is prepared to acknowledge it." Ludwig von Mises "Corruptissima republicae, plurimas leges" Tacitus
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I hope it's not too much of a problem to resurrect an old discussion.

You asked for books, but you didn't really get that. (though the last post is fairly detailed)  As to alleged bias, I doubt you'll be able to avoid that either way.  Some time after you posted your query, a book relevant to your query was added to the Mises servers.  I'm also transcribing this.

Fabian Freeway - High Road to Socialism in the USA  http://mises.org/document/4621

http://progressingamerica.freecapitalists.org/2012/08/20/foreward-preface/

The early Fabians kept a record of their own history in Edward R. Pease' The History of the Fabian Society.

http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/13715

The later Fabians kept a record too.  Margaret Cole, The Story of Fabian Socialism.

books.google.com/books?id=8i2sAAAAIAAJ

Though, Google books will limit the pages you can view.  You can still get a lot from it.

Like Fabian Freeway, Zygmund Dobbs wrote about Fabian influence, with a lot of detail on their influence here in the U.S.A.  His book Keynes at Harvard is online by the current copyright holder.

http://www.keynesatharvard.org/

You could also take time reading Fabian Tracts and other such forms of propaganda, but YMMV considering these are designed to put a happy face on their operations.

http://www2.lse.ac.uk/library/archive/online_resources/fabianarchive/victorian.aspx

As to your query into Fabian influence into Europe, you might not find anything like that as it's probably not been written.  The Fabians have been a long-neglected group(via external study) despite their enormous success.  I was astonished to find that books like 'Freeway and [email protected] were even written.

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Anenome replied on Fri, Nov 23 2012 1:17 PM
 
 

Robert LeFevre did a piece on the Fabians in his popular lecture series, this entitled, "The Fascists and the Fabians."

In it he underscores the origins of the Fabians, says they invented modern political methodology, based on their recognition that all democracies are inherently socialist anyway (by virtue of democracy being predicated on collectivism) so you don't have to overthrow them, you just have to give them time to work and slight nudges.

They produced many well-argued tracts, admitted the most powerful politicians, journalists, and intellectuals in Britain, but only a few thousand, into their midst, and sponsored bills on both sides of the aisles.

They'd move towards their desired legislation on say, public housing, by this means:

On the left they'd put forth a bill asking for say $800b in spending on public housing.

But the way they'd tamp down opposition for this bill is, on the right they'd sponsor a bill seeking to spend only say $300b on new public housing.

This had the effect of allowing them to undercut resistance to public housing entirely.

If the leftist didn't support the $800b bill, they'd urge him to, saying the right would win a huge victory if you didn't.

And if the rightists opposed public housing, they'd say, hey, you've got to support the $300b bill or else the $800b one will carry the day and we simply can't afford that!

So, they invented a way to win no matter how anyone voted. And it worked. And is still working.

 
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