Mark Ritchie and me: Did I pal around with a commie?

It’s not news that Democrats steal elections.  But it might be news to a lot of folks that the people who help them do that include some pretty close allies of the Communist Party USA (CPUSA) — for example, Mark Ritchie, the Soros-supported Minnesota Secretary of State who presided over the recount-and-more-recounts that took the 2008 Senate election away from Norm Coleman and handed it to the execrable Al Franken.

Minnesota Secretary of State Mark Ritchie is regarded as a “non-party friend” by the Communist Party USA.

So highly does the Communist Party regard Mr. Ritchie, that he has been allowed to attend an high level “not to be publicized” Party meeting in Minneapolis.

Some of the Communist Party members at this meeting, later supported Ritchie in his Secretary of State election campaigns. One of them, labor leader Mark Froemke, went on to support two of Ritchie’s Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party colleagues – Al Franken and Mark Dayton in their respective election campaigns.

As Minnesota Secretary of State, Mark Ritchie’s job includes overseeing the State’s electoral recounts. In 2009, following a very controversial recount, Ritchie awarded a U.S. Senate seat to Al Franken. Currently Ritchie is overseeing another recount which could give Mark Dayton the Minnesota Governorship.

Thing is, I used to know Mark Ritchie — back in my radical years –and worked with him on a number of issues. To tell the truth, I was a big supporter of him and his Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy.  He’s a very intelligent, articulate, talented guy. But this alarming story about his tolerance for, and evidently, working relationship with, the Communist Party USA, is a great lesson in how deep and how subtly communism has penetrated our country, and how dangerous it is to give any quarter at all to the Left.

Let me tell you how I first started to have my doubts about Mark Ritchie.  He was giving a talk at a conference I attended.  It was an election year, and Mark was pushing something called the “New Party” — the first time I’d heard of it.  (Of course, we know more now, don’t we?)  Partly because I knew Mark personally, and partly because I am a person who simply will not “sit down and shut up” about abortion, in the Q&A session I piped up and opined that progressives would make a lot more progress, and gain a lot more support among the family-farm and working-class people we were trying to attract, by being clearly and vocally pro-life.  (I spent nearly 20 years on the Left, and I was pro-life the whole time, always trying to convince my fellow leftists that the “non-violence” they claim to believe in does not allow the killing of babies, but I don’t think I won a single convert — which is why I ultimately quit the Left, but that’s another story.)

Mark was very smooth in his response.  He had to try to placate me while not alienating any pro-aborts who might be in the audience.  But his reply was pretty much what I’d come to expect from people on the Left.  Those messy “social issues” were just too divisive, so we’d best focus on the bread-and-butter issues. (A lot of GOP establishment types must be taking their cues from him these days.)

This is why, for me, abortion really is a “litmus-test” issue:  After all, if people can’t get it right on something as basic as whether or not it’s okay to kill a child who can’t defend himself or herself, then why should I trust their judgment on much more complex issues such as economic policy?

Anyhow, as polite and articulate as Mark was in his response to me — most observers probably even would have said that he “validated” my feelings — there was something in not only the content but the manner of his reply — and indeed, of his whole talk that day — that made me uneasy.  I had worked with Mark solely on agricultural and trade issues previously, and now it seemed he was diluting his long-time issues emphasis with all this political talk about this “New Party” — almost as if he were using this issue-centered conference we were at, to push a new partisan political agenda. I brushed it off at the time, because after all,  it was an election year; I supposed that one had to expect some politicking.  And I have no reason to doubt that Mark had good intentions, that he honestly believed that the best way for us to achieve our goals on our issues was to join up with this new party he had such high hopes for.

Still, in the light of these new revelations (the article cited above is just the fifth in a whole series on Mark Ritchie at New Zeal), I’m confirmed once again in my theory, developed over the course of 35 years of political activity, that how a person answers the abortion question tells a lot about how deeply they buy into the more general principle that “the ends justify the means” — i.e., there is no objective/absolute standard of good and evil by which we can measure various options. If people believe that, then all kinds of horrors become possible; as Dostoevsky said, “If there is no God, everything is permitted.”

Even communism. Even election fraud. Even sedition.

Which brings us to the real reason the Left hates people like Allen West with such hysterical, over-the-top fury:  He believes there really do exist good and evil;  therefore, an objective standard exists by which we can judge some actions, some policies, some political regimes, as better or worse than others.

The Left doesn’t like that at all.

Cross-posted at West to the West Wing 2012.