In April 2016, at the request of a student activist, I delivered a lecture at the University of California, Riverside titled “The Victims of Socialism”. This lecture consists of narrative, pictures, and music and focused on the death and destruction caused by three socialist regimes in the twentieth century (Russia, China, and Cambodia). At the conclusion of the lecture there was total silence in the room, which I initially construed to be reflective of a failure on my part to be an effective speaker. In actuality, the students in attendance were stunned not only by the enormity of the carnage, but also by the fact that they were learning about this awful history for the very first time.
In the next six years, I delivered this lecture at over twenty college campuses (some virtually) across the United States and Canada at events sponsored by Young America’s Foundation and the Victims of Socialism Memorial Foundation. The lead-ups to each live event were marked by threats of disruption by leftist students, and actual disruption via the tearing down campus flyers advertising the event. At four campuses armed guards had to be hired given the ferocity and frequency of threats delivered through social media.
The lecture also exposes the myths, promulgated by the left, that socialism has been perfected in Scandinavian countries, and that socialism is a watered-down, less authoritarian version of communism.
It is the goal of the lecture to convince attendees that today’s socialists (or “democratic socialists”) are the direct ideological descendents of the socialist/communist criminals whose radical collectivist impulses and actions led to the deaths of almost 100 million people in the twentieth century. The lecture also brings this history forward to present day Venezuela, and warns of the storm-clouds of socialism currently gathering over the United States.
Readers will note that YouTube placed an age restriction (18 years +) on the video that accompanies this article, purportedly due to the graphic photographs of those killed by the socialists. A quick review of YouTube videos about the Holocaust and American lynching showed no similar age restrictions attached to these similarly graphic videos. YouTube’s (and Big Tech’s) glaring political bias is on full display here. Apparently, in YouTube’s worldview, the six million dead from Nazi extermination and the throusands killed in American lynchings must be visually documented for all to see (including those under the age of eighteen), while young people cannot be allowed full access to visusal doumentation of the ninety-four million innocents slaughtered by communists in the twentieth century.
George P. Harbison is a retired Chief Financial Officer. In his role as a financial executive, Mr. Harbison
attained a deep understanding of federal and state tax matters. He utilized this knowledge to analyze,
dissect, and refute popularly held but fallacious tax assertions.
In 2013, Mr. Harbison wrote a piece for Forbes.com in which he completely debunked Warren Buffett’s
famous and politically charged assertion that his federal tax rate was well below the rate paid by his
lower-paid office workers. Since then, his tax myth-busting articles have appeared in Forbes.com,
RealClearMarkets.com, RealClearPolitics.com, and AmericanThinker.com.
Mr. Harbison’s Forbes.com essay on Warren Buffett was included in the book, Excuse Me Professor,
Challenging the Myths of Progressivism, co-edited by the Foundation for Economic Education (FEE),
and Young America’s Foundation (YAF). He has also appeared twice as a guest on The Larry Elder Show.
In 2016, at the request of a YAF student leader, Mr. Harbison created and delivered a presentation titled
“The Victims of Socialism” at the University of California, Riverside. This presentation was subsequently delivered at over a dozen college campuses. Mr. Harbison’s lectures on this topic have been cosponsored by YAF and the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation.
Mr. Harbison has also presented “The Victims of Socialism” at several YAF student conferences at the
Reagan Ranch Center in Santa Barbara, California.
Mr. Harbison received a BA from Kenyon College, where he majored in physics. He continued his
education at the University of Michigan, where he received an MBA (emphasis in finance and
Mr. Harbison resides in Mullett Lake, Michigan. He previously served as the on-field announcer for The
Miracle League of Orange County, California, a baseball league for special-needs children.