Why can't pro-communist people simply accept that communism doesn't work?

Sep 2012
3,751
Bulgaria
In order to have first hand experience with the former second or third world one should be in his 50's at least, an young adult during the last days of 'communism'. The life was tough back then so i heard, I was a teen when all ended. I do remember the propaganda, the threat of M.A.D., the Pioner organisation, Komsomol, the best years of my life, my childhood is there.
 
Sep 2018
37
America
Again, this proves nothing about their actual living conditions. As I stated in #87 there is the problem of adaptive preferences, when one cannot perceive that conditions are getting worse or that they were very bad. An extreme case would be ex-slaves who saw their current condition as worse than being under slavery. This problem of adaptive preferences is actually a current problem in political theory, and I think it should not be ignored here. Seeing a period as a golden age, or as better than nowadays, does not guarantee that that period was really better. Considering human tendency to simplify narratives and prefer "the good old days", one should be suspicious of this kind of narrative. One must remember that 500,000 people still visited Franco's mausoleum annually in 2011.

Well, yeah, "Good" living conditions is a matter of perspective. People who grow up in abject poverty generally don`t ask very much out of life to make them happy. Well into the 1960`s, many rural Americans lived in conditions that today we are more typical of places like Bengladesh, but they were considered to be well-off independent landowners. If you take a Bedouin nomad from the Sahara desert and give him an Soviet factory worker`s apartment with running water, electricity, access to public transportation, a 40 hour work week with paid vacations, he would probably feel like someone just up and appointed him Sultan. It probably wouldn`t bother him too much that after taxes, he didn`t have a lot of money left over for luxury consumer goods, or that government bureaucrats could nose around his life whenever they wanted.

Not everyone in the world has the same values and priorities in life as Americans. Our consistent failure to understand that fact has led to most of America`s foreign policy disasters in the past several decades.
 
Feb 2017
132
Pacific Ocean
If you take a Bedouin nomad from the Sahara desert and give him an Soviet factory worker`s apartment with running water, electricity, access to public transportation, a 40 hour work week with paid vacations, he would probably feel like someone just up and appointed him Sultan.
I think you missed the point. What I am saying is that in this case the Bedouin could be homesick. It is possible that he would not recognize his new situation as an improvement. The same with Russian people: they could be objectively better off today but still be nostalgic of a distant (and idealized) past. Stating that this nostalgia exists proves absolutely nothing.

And about 'good' living conditions, sure there is some measure of arbitrariness in it. But at the same time there are objective measures such as the number of calories one can capture from one's surroundings in a given day (with the use of electronic equipment, cars, ovens, and the like, in contrast with simple fires from tribes of thousands of years in the past). This includes not only income (which it seems that the average American earned at least twice as much as the average Soviet) but also technology (especially in luxury items). There's also the amount of individual liberty a person has, which intuitively seems to have been different in Soviet Russia in comparison to the US. This is all things one can get used not to have, but I think one would have a hard time denying that some situations are objectively better than others, even if subjectively they feel similar.
 
Jun 2017
2,814
Connecticut
You are clueless about history which to you emerges from books (I suppose from communist books about communism). It's all very fine in a theoretic bubble I suppose.

Practice was something completely different than a theory and I was there. You was not.
Objectively speaking you are anecdotally biased(you were there for your own experiences, you being there does not make you an expert on anything, waving the bloody shirt is an effective but intellectually bankrupt technique) while the books and the "theoretic bubble" is actual history.
 
Oct 2012
610
Well, yeah, "Good" living conditions is a matter of perspective. People who grow up in abject poverty generally don`t ask very much out of life to make them happy. Well into the 1960`s, many rural Americans lived in conditions that today we are more typical of places like Bengladesh, but they were considered to be well-off independent landowners. If you take a Bedouin nomad from the Sahara desert and give him an Soviet factory worker`s apartment with running water, electricity, access to public transportation, a 40 hour work week with paid vacations, he would probably feel like someone just up and appointed him Sultan. It probably wouldn`t bother him too much that after taxes, he didn`t have a lot of money left over for luxury consumer goods, or that government bureaucrats could nose around his life whenever they wanted.

Not everyone in the world has the same values and priorities in life as Americans. Our consistent failure to understand that fact has led to most of America`s foreign policy disasters in the past several decades.
Yes, everyone in the world don`t have the same values and priorities and still you are ready to say that a Bedouin nomad should be a Soviet factory worker? Maybe you should at least ask the Bedouin first?
 
Last edited:
Likes: andyferdinard
Apr 2017
681
Lemuria
If you take a Bedouin nomad from the Sahara desert and give him an Soviet factory worker`s apartment with running water, electricity, access to public transportation, a 40 hour work week with paid vacations, he would probably feel like someone just up and appointed him Sultan.
You really know nigh to nothing about human nature, do you? I'm pretty sure if you take a nomad to cold, dark USSR and make him work 40 hrs a week, he would more likely commit suicide than feel like a sultan.
 

macon

Ad Honorem
Aug 2015
3,877
Slovenia, EU
Objectively speaking you are anecdotally biased(you were there for your own experiences, you being there does not make you an expert on anything, waving the bloody shirt is an effective but intellectually bankrupt technique) while the books and the "theoretic bubble" is actual history.
Socialist system was pushing his indoctrination on few levels: in schools, in media and in Yugoslav army where I was for a year. I would say that system presented itself on a wide level. And marxist theory was something completely different than a practice on all levels. That's why it collapsed: because of a widening gap between a presentation and a reality.

Please don't say that a theory gives you a view from above, an impartial, unbiased attitude for something as socialism where theory ment everything and was worth nothing.
 
Sep 2012
3,751
Bulgaria
You guys know nothing If this berber was given a chance to visit and stay for a while in the proletarian paradise authorities there would sent him to study economics in Great Comrade Lumumba University in order to get proper education and to become qualified specialist meaning fierce freedom fighter against cannibalistic colonialists and other agents of the vile western bourgeoisie. Such was the politics during the late phase of communism / past 60's.
 
Jun 2017
2,814
Connecticut
Socialist system was pushing his indoctrination on few levels: in schools, in media and in Yugoslav army where I was for a year. I would say that system presented itself on a wide level. And marxist theory was something completely different than a practice on all levels. That's why it collapsed: because of a widening gap between a presentation and a reality.

Please don't say that a theory gives you a view from above, an impartial, unbiased attitude for something as socialism where theory ment everything and was worth nothing.
If you read my posts or the person's posts you were arguing with you'd realize there really aren't any Marxist cheerleaders in here, heck if you read my first post it's not incompatible with what you just said. It's just a common theme amongst people from Marxist based countries to use the fact they were in a bad situation as a way to discredit Marxism and leftism(which is a very complex issue beyond even a national perspective, nm an anecdotal one because of the sheer amount of sub variants) while defending the very real problems Marxism was seen as a cure to rather than simply an attack on this method of fixing on those problems(Ayn Rand cough cough). To be honest people who've been in any bad situation tend to do this and I oppose waving the bloody shirt(basically saying I was there and it was bad so thus any arguments opposing what I'm saying are inherently wrong) in almost any context if it doesn't have supporting evidence. Also Socialism wasn't Marxism for most of history and isn't currently so your experiences aren't relevant to modern(or pre 19th century) Socialism, just Marxism, Communism and "Titoism". Marxists used the Socialist label because they used to have it but in most of the world Social Democrats successfully took over Socialist parties while Marxists became known as "Communists". In Yugoslavia(an exception to this trend), Marxism would be known as Socialism because the Marxists would have ended up winning that ideological battle and would have no reason to stop using the term.
 
Likes: macon

Similar History Discussions