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I think you are perhaps unfamiliar with the early history of the state of Utah, when it was called Deseret, and subsumed most of Nevada and part of Colorado and a corner of Wyoming. The early Mormon/LDS settlers practiced early Communism (early, because it predated Marx et. al., so obviously it wasn't called that yet).
One of the problems was when the kids wanted new pair of dungarees (which is what they were called at the time), they would tend to use a knife sharpening grinding wheel to "age" the cloth past the point of being patched.
Did anybody else read this in Abe Simpson's voice?