Author Topic: Why doesn't communism work?  (Read 139132 times)

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Offline AGRBear

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Re: Why doesn't communism work?
« Reply #195 on: July 29, 2010, 03:16:24 PM »
Kulaks were former peasants in Russia who owned medium-sized farms as a result of the reforms introduced by Peter Stolypin in 1906. Stolypin's intention was to create a stable group of prosperous farmers who would form a natural conservative political force. By the outbreak of the First World War it was estimated that around 15 per cent of Russian farmers were kulaks.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/RUSkulaks.htm

As people discuss this subject, perhaps, they could mention the village, city, province or at least the general area.... if relating a story.

Back on the other thread I had mentioned that I would explain what "Kulaks" meant to my families who lived in Russia.  But first, let me give you the diffinition given in a book about Russian History.  It tells me that a Kulak in Russia was  "wealthy peasants" in later years of the Romanov reign into the early Lenin and Stalin years.  It says Kulaks before 1917 were more than landowners, they were prominent in village / local affairs.  After the Revolution of 1917 the Kulacks favored the New Economic Policy [in the Duma and Provionsal Govt.]. This was replaced by Lenin's govt.. When Stalin came along he raised their taxes and transformed  [a kinder word than requistioned] their lands and made them into collective farms.  The "kulakization program" led to the execution and exile of many of the kulaks.

Now, if you actually had a family who lived through this time,  one hears quite a different story.  Surprise, surprise, surprise  ;D  

The early diffinition of a "kulak" refered to a landowner who had taken his fist to his peasant workers.  The Bolsheviks liked this symbolic logo of "all rich people"  being viewed as "evil" with their "fists" raised against the worker on posters.  As time progressed,  and, as the revolutionaries grew in number and Lenin had lost control of many parts of Russia,  the "kulak" took on different forms in the eyes of the revolutionaries.  Depending upon the revolutionary as to how good or evil he/she was,  this also depended upon who it was who was called a "kulak".  In the worst of times,  a "kulak" became a person who had something a revolutionary wanted.  It could have just been a pair of boots to a cow or a small shop or large shop or land.....  

A "kulak" was given the label of "enemy of the Soviet people"....

And what did the Bolshviks do to the "enemy of the Soviet people"?
Again that depended upon the revolutionaries in charge of the area.  If the  "kulak"  was wearing boots the Bolshevik wanted he was either was lucky if he was able to   walked away barefoot but often times the "kulak" went to jail or sent to Siberia in box cars or was  shot.

Soon,  there were men and boys lined up outside of their village and shot.  

Some of the men who disapeared at gunpoint, just were never seen again.

There were train box cars that were filled with thousands and thousand [no one knows the exact number] of "kulaks" [men, women and children] who were sent to Siberia where the majority of them  died and were stacked like cords of wood.

This did occur in all of my family villages in  "The Black Sea" area,  which were German colonies created by Alexander I.  [There were earlier villages in the Volga which were created under Catherine II "the Geat" in the later part of the 1700s.]

 Each group of German-Russians from the Baltic to the Black Sea to the Volga to Siberia has their own stories about how they were affected by Tsars, the Red Army and Stalin different.

I'm running too long.  But that is what happen to some of the "peasants" who were members of my family living in Russia from 1917-the 1960s.

AGRBear
« Last Edit: July 29, 2010, 03:18:16 PM by AGRBear »
"What is true by lamplight is not always true by sunlight."

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Offline PAVLOV

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Re: Why doesn't communism work?
« Reply #196 on: July 30, 2010, 09:35:13 AM »
Getting back to the Ceacescues ( ? ), I think more than any Communist dictators thusfar they were among the most grotesque. I fail to understand why they lasted as long as they did. The same can be asked of all the others probably.
My neighbour is a very nice Roumanian man who experienced the worst of their rule and survived as a very emotionally damaged person.
He is a stained glass artist, and worked on the Ceaucescue's ( my spelling !!) hideous monstrosity of a "Palace", in Bucharest, and can tell some really bizarre stories about them. ( After a couple of whiskeys)
When he was working in this building, " Palace of Kitsch" as he calls it, she (Mrs C) once crept up behind him silently to observe him installing a window. It took a few minutes for him to realise that she was breathing down his neck, and when he turned around, there she was in a dressing gown and slippers. He recalls her silent and evil presence as very sinister, and remembers the room going "cold" when she entered. He also remembers her as not being a particularly intelligent person, very abrupt and rude. ( The building remains as an enormous monument to their bad taste) , and it still looms over the city.

Why on earth would anyone want to exhume Mr and Mrs C ?
Roumania must be the best example of why communism does not work, I think.

Constantinople

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Re: Why doesn't communism work?
« Reply #197 on: July 30, 2010, 10:56:34 AM »
I would say that as bad as Romania was, North Korea is far worse.

Offline Robert_Hall

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Re: Why doesn't communism work?
« Reply #198 on: July 30, 2010, 11:25:39 AM »
 Const.. I have not been to North Korea yet, and have only  the report of my friend to go by, so I really cannot  say what it is like first hand.
  And Pavlov-  your assessment of the Romainian  Ceausescu's[?] is pretty much the same as mine! I have met several Romanians and NOT ONE of them regret their "demise" They were much hated.  On the other hand, I know people from other  former communist countries that have varying degrees of  missing their old regimes. There are still people who miss the dreadful Miloslavics and even Stalin!
« Last Edit: July 30, 2010, 11:39:28 AM by Robert_Hall »
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Offline TimM

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Re: Why doesn't communism work?
« Reply #199 on: July 30, 2010, 11:32:51 AM »
Yeah, some people do miss Stalin.  Of course, you have neo-Nazis who praised Hitler.  These leaders, no matter how horrible they were, will always have admirers, it seems.
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Offline PAVLOV

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Re: Why doesn't communism work?
« Reply #200 on: August 01, 2010, 08:35:30 AM »
HUMAN NATURE IS A VERY STRANGE THING. I find it difficult to understand how any human being can miss Hitler and Stalin.

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Re: Why doesn't communism work?
« Reply #201 on: August 01, 2010, 08:50:35 AM »
I always think about that. That's why I mentioned North Corea. There are people who think they did a great job. There are people who want to continue their works.

Offline Robert_Hall

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Re: Why doesn't communism work?
« Reply #202 on: August 01, 2010, 10:09:43 AM »

 Although I cannot think of any justification for Hitler AT ALL, and would agree that those would admire him are rather lacking However, millions did admire him, like the so-called lemmings.
 Stalin is another matter altogether. Not a few Russians [mainly older, from the WW2  generation]  see him as the saviour of Russia,  defeating the Nazis.   Some also miss the ordered social life;  low crime,  Soviet prestige & power [respect, I guess]
 Lady N, you obviously do not know much about North Korea.  It is a social experiment in progress.  They have not done a great job, it is not finished. Who knows if it ever will be?
« Last Edit: August 03, 2010, 10:14:41 PM by Alixz »
Life may not be the party we expected, but while we are here, might as well dance..

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Offline TimM

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Re: Why doesn't communism work?
« Reply #203 on: August 01, 2010, 12:36:54 PM »
 
Quote
Stalin is another matter altogether. Not a few Russians [mainly older, from the WW2  generation]  see him as the saviour of Russia

Yeah, but this generation is dying off. 
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Offline Robert_Hall

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Re: Why doesn't communism work?
« Reply #204 on: August 01, 2010, 01:57:44 PM »
Is it TimM ?  There many looking back. After all this whole forum is about just that- looking back. As I have said before, I am not defending anyone, least of all Stalin, Hitler or anyone else.  Simply  arguing for objectivity and  understanding. of other's points of view. Dogmatism & closed-mindedness brought in  as well took down many regimes. To illustrate this,  many years ago, I was assigned a topic in a discussion/debate class in school.  Hitler- of all people.  I resarched what as well who he was, and then went on with the challenge.  I did not believe a word of it,  but it actually was a a very important exercise. More people should try it- Devil's Advocate.
   
Life may not be the party we expected, but while we are here, might as well dance..

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Constantinople

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Re: Why doesn't communism work?
« Reply #205 on: August 01, 2010, 04:43:10 PM »
well if N korea is an experiment then the location of the laboratory must be hell.

Offline Robert_Hall

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Re: Why doesn't communism work?
« Reply #206 on: August 01, 2010, 04:57:54 PM »
Of course I do not know, Const. as visitors see only what they want you to see.  Which is the best side of that "experiment".  I did notice, however, that when the border between the 2 Koreas was open for a while,  not many from the North defected to the South.  Not sure why this was, but it does say something... what that is, I could not say.
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Offline AGRBear

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Re: Why doesn't communism work?
« Reply #207 on: August 02, 2010, 12:09:07 AM »
Of course I do not know, Const. as visitors see only what they want you to see.  Which is the best side of that "experiment".  I did notice, however, that when the border between the 2 Koreas was open for a while,  not many from the North defected to the South.  Not sure why this was, but it does say something... what that is, I could not say.

The first time my husband and I took a bus tour into East Berlin, which was under the USSR at that time,  the bus driver was only allowed to drive certain streets.  This gave us, the tourist, the view of the front of the building that were patched, painted and gave us the belief that the everything was fine. The back of the buildings were falling apart.... Back in Catherine II "the Great's" time, Potemkin set up village fronts that looked clean and marvelous.  The villagers were dressed in new clothes and boots so  everything and everyone looked great for the Empress to see.  So, the USSR wasn't doing something for the first time.  Behind the paint and the new clothes were people in terrible poverty.  

There is terrible poverty in the USA and it can be found all over the world.  And, wanting poverty to vanish is a song sung by most people and socialism seems to be the answer for some.  Communist leaders like Lenin and Stalin sang this song but they had no real intent  to do such a thing because they were after power. And,  as far as I have witnessed or have learned about through others,  communism always proves to fail because the leaders are still after absolute power.   Humans survive best when they are free, have individual rights and are protected by laws enforced by people who believe in freedom, individual rights and do onto others as they would have them do onto them.

AGRBear
« Last Edit: August 02, 2010, 12:21:59 AM by AGRBear »
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Re: Why doesn't communism work?
« Reply #208 on: August 02, 2010, 02:12:30 AM »
Well that is curious because there is a common stream of defectors.  Anyone who has actually seen the reality of N Korea knows that there is extensive shortages of even basic goods.  My assumption is that the NK government made sure that noone who was likely to defect was anywhere near the border before the border actually opened.  During the exchanges and family reconcialiations, the NK government was especially vigilant in ensuring that anyone who went to the south had several family members under house arrest to ensure a return.

Offline Elisabeth

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Re: Why doesn't communism work?
« Reply #209 on: August 06, 2010, 06:39:41 AM »
Is it TimM ?  There many looking back. After all this whole forum is about just that- looking back. As I have said before, I am not defending anyone, least of all Stalin, Hitler or anyone else.  Simply  arguing for objectivity and  understanding. of other's points of view. Dogmatism & closed-mindedness brought in  as well took down many regimes. To illustrate this,  many years ago, I was assigned a topic in a discussion/debate class in school.  Hitler- of all people.  I resarched what as well who he was, and then went on with the challenge.  I did not believe a word of it,  but it actually was a a very important exercise. More people should try it- Devil's Advocate.
   

Dear Robert (BTW, nice to meet you again here), I also once played devil's advocate, in a college debate about whether it was justified to assassinate Tsar Alexander II. Simply because nobody else was volunteering for the side arguing that it was the right decision, I did so, as a purely intellectual argument, because in reality I thought the assassination of Alexander II was precisely what put Russia on the road to hell and damnation. I argued my case well ("the only good tyrant is a dead tyrant") but I didn't believe a word I was saying.

I do think that even with Hitler, as with Alexander II's assassins (the Narodnaia Volia, or People's Will), there were/are many arguments (although NOT a lot) to be made for their respective cases. Hitler, after all, was a teetotaler who was for animal rights and vegetarianism (although not for people's rights by any measure of the imagination). The People's Will basically argued "give me liberty, or give me death," which is a defensible position, intellectually speaking, although they got death only, as I believe Russia did, as a result of their actions, in the spadeful, or millions, or whatever way you want to count the number of unnecessary deaths they probably ultimately caused.
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