Saturday, March 05, 2011

Want a class free society? Go American

The far left, particularly those with the moral compass that spins enough for them to express an admiration for Socialism, love to discuss classlessness as a goal. Well, Americans really eliminated class distinction to a degree that no society has managed to, not least of which compared to the aristocratic nature of Socialist, Marxist-Leninist, and the rest of the quasi-intellectual variants thereof. We have few living examples left, but they are pure and consistent:

In North Korea, one's songbun, or socio-economic and class background, is extremely important and is primarily determined at birth. People with the best songbun are descendants of the anti-Japanese guerrillas who fought with Kim Il-song, followed by people whose parents or grandparents were factory workers, laborers, or poor, small farmers in 1950. "Ranked below them in descending order are forty-seven distinct groups in what must be the most class-differentiated society in the world today." Anyone with a father, uncle, or grandfather who owned land or was a doctor, Christian minister, merchant, or lawyer has low songbun.
Then there’s the ubiquitous, ass-kissing nature of low-level cronyism:
After songbun, the next most important influence on North Korean life is Kim-Il-song sangsa, or the thought of Kim Il-song. Within certain narrow limits, one's devotion to the thought of Kim Il-song can improve one's songbun, and disloyalty can lower one's songbun.
Not to mention the classlessness of hereditary succession. And don’t bet that the fate of the higher classes isn’t tied to el hefe, and that they will get their when he finally gets his.