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Haloless0320

Communism

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Alright,I have been debating this with friends and family members all month.So I have decided to ask everyone here.I want a first hand account of anyone who happened to live in Russia while it was still considered the U.S.S.R. I wanna know if Communism will ever work or if I'm just stubbornly trying to cling to the thought of a better government than US capitalism.And,
-Is Communism really for the people?
-How was Unemployment?
-Were there many homeless?
After alot of reading I still can't get a straight answer.Hopefully someone with firsthand experience could shed some light on this debate

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I get the impression that while it did clamp down on "dissidents" and free speech, and people who spoke out against the government found themselves dissapearing to be tortured and more than likely shot or used as a slave, some Russians get kind of nostalgic for those days. I also beleive there was free medical care and they ensured everybody got a roof over thier head (compare to certian countries where tramps sleep on the street whilst councils wonder who will fill all thier empty houses)and some kind of job to go to. Also they did several other state-controlled things we might consider 'unusual'. For instance rather than buy a car people where given cars if they had worked hard... though said cars where usually extremely shoddy and rusty and there was a waiting list. The Soviet Union did have a reputation for blandness and lots of shortages, though that could be more of an economic thing than anything. If they had traded all that lovely oil with capitalist countries they might not have been so badly-off (could afford football teams and everything). I think it goes without saying that beyond Stalin any pretense of actually following the ideas of Marx was largely dropped.

One of my best friends at Uni is a 44-year old Russian from the Magadan Oblast, i'll ask her a few things if anybody wants?

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Stalin was a lunatic.I always got a creepy feeling when I saw pics of pripyat since that city saw so much blood,with the nazi Occupation and Stalins Collectivization plans(I think it was Pripyat).
I haven't read much about Marx but I've been reading up on Lenin alot.In my opinion I think he was a great man.

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Short answers:

Is capitalism a good system? Yes - in theory.

Does capitalism ever work? No.

Is communism a good system? Yes - in theory.

Does communism ever work? No.

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Creaphis said:

Short answers:

Is capitalism a good system? Yes - in theory.

Does capitalism ever work? No.

Is communism a good system? Yes - in theory.

Does communism ever work? No.


I like your post allot.

Where I think the Soviets failed and U.S succeeded is Russia never gave the general people a means to advance in society. In the U.S there has always been a balanced amount of poor, mediocre, and rich. The Soviets had the rich and shit loads of poor people who could only advance in small doses as the higher ups seen fit.

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At risk of sounding like a "COMMUNISM HURTS CHILDREN" American, I think that communism is juvenile. Some people started to follow the belief that human society would work best if people didn't do what the wanted and instead did what they needed to do for everyone's good. Everyone had a job and no one was better or worse. They decided that a world where there was no motive to succeed (because success didn't exist) would be the best option for the perfect society. They thought that people would be happy and free if forced to face a life of mediocrity with nothing interesting. Now communism sounds good on paper, everyone is equal and everyone helps the community grow, etc.

On a small scale, where being part of this lifestyle is a choice, it is a good idea (or at least it works and people like it). However when you talk about huge countries like the U.S.S.R. and the P.R.C., or even Cuba, you are looking at a completely different situation. First of all, these countries are simply too big to be governed in a communal way. Communities are small, communism is the idea of a community working together and replacing the government. It cannot be successfully scaled up (in it's pure form) as history has proved. Second of all, the USSR and PRC are most definitely not Communism, they are failed dictatorships that rose under a false label. Of course, they were originally communist based, view wise, but due to size and power voids produced by Communism, they quickly destabilized. No matter how many bleeding hearts from the earlier half of the 20th century want to believe that the USSR and the PRC were good ideas with good leaders, the FACT is that they are wrong. The attempts at forcing communism into these large countries (which is oxymoronic by definition, I'll get to that in a minute) simply destablized already volatile governments even more and dictatorial leaders rushed to fill the void under a guise.

Finally (I said I would get back to this), communism cannot be "forced" or declared, it was originally seen as the natural evolution of government over time. Personally I still think its merit is debatable, regardless. Communism, even as an idea, is flawed by nature outside of SMALL communities. It is not natural progression, nor is it a stable form of government that gels with human nature, and human nature isn't going to change and bend over for communism.

Capitalism, in it's pure sense is also flawed. An anarchic capitalist driven government (think Ayn Rand style) would be a bad idea as well. The trick is to balance Capitalism (which I see as free for all animalism) with enough government intervention to keep the playing field level in a way which benefits (but doesn't manipulate) society (since we are "humane" and not just animals).

Also, the people I talk to whose parents are from communist Russia have nothing good to say about it.

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whats wg?  in my history class, we are learning about russia and lenin and stalin and such, bloody sunday, etc. events leading to communism, all that, and this dude who sits next to me says that and has a shirt with fidel, stalin, etc. dancing on the front and it says communism its a party on it.

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Communism is crazy. But I'm not gonna speak my mind when so many conspiracy theorists lurk this forum X-D

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There is no such thing as a successful pure form of whatever. The most successful nations have mixed economies.

Why? Because a mixed economy adds a great deal of social, economic and even politically flexibility that humanity as a whole needs to advance as a species.

Communism, much like the feudal systems and your average despotic dictatorship - as well as purely socialistic systems in which the government dictates what you do - are very dangerous systems and destabilise because they do not allow the flexibility needed for the nation as a whole to succeed.

Even if your government is corrupt as fuck and mired in buraucracy, that mixed economy might be your nation's salvation.

Even pure capitalism does not work. You still need the social services in place, and you sure as hell need government intervention to make sure that the capitalist system isn't compromised - which it will be, and faster than any other system because where there's wealth and no rules, there's hell to pay.

Furthermore, as others have said, USSR and the PRC exist(ed) under a false label. PRC is quickly becoming a non-regulate capitalist economy. USSR was just a despotic socialist hellhole.

Stalin was also not a socialist, he was a maniacal control freak and a sputtering bully-boy. Lenin and Trotsky, on the other hand, were - and both are highly respectable politicians and human beings because they were capable of learning from their mistakes and were genuinely sincere in their actions - something most of us have never seen in our lifetimes from any politician since.

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insertwackynamehere said:

It is not natural progression, nor is it a stable form of government that gels with human nature, and human nature isn't going to change and bend over for communism.


Maybe not overnight, but human nature sure has changed a lot in the past millennium ;)

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Basically what Creaphis said. Communism as a theory, and the original ideas and goals behind it sound like a very good thing, and might be a good thing if it was carried out with no alterations. Sadly, the very power that the masses tried to take away from the rich and the noble just got re-distributed, and the communism that manifested itself in reality was very... warped.

EDIT: As others have noted, one of the main reasons is Stalin. I remember watching a video while in History class a few years back, and apparently his doctor actually filed an official report on Stalin declaring him a crazed "megalomaniac". I think the Doctor was executed for that report :/

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Well someone threw an Idea out there on another forum.Democratic Communism.It's like communism but you have more of a voice in matters.Of course this idea was shot down pretty quick.

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Democratic communism is by no means outlandish, it's what communism is; in communism, the people govern themselves in a purely democratic fashion becuase no one is more equal than another, so things need to be decided upon based on how they affect everyong; in communism, there cannot be one clear leader.

Unlike aarachy where everyone just goes about their own business, communism has an official government. It's just composed of everyone.

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If only It worked.It just makes it seem like if america adopted communism that it would work wonderfully.I guess I'm just sick of living here.

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I like what Ayn Rand has to say. Me==Libertarian. That being said, I don't think communism really works at all. I hate the US social programs.

However, I dont think anyone can make any valid point arguing for/against communism/capitalism. look at any religious sect, Christianity, Islam, etc. If you bring up the flaws of Catholicism to a Catholic, sure enough he will still believe in it, and defend his position by saying that those acts were not truly Catholic. No matter what flaws you bring up, a true believer will stay firm in that belief. Likewise with political/economic systems. A Capitalist/Communist/Anarchist/Libertarian/Objectivist/Feminist/Libertarian etc. who truly believes in a particular system will not be deterred by pointing out past examples.

So having said that I dont think that an objectivist world will look like this but I do think that a Communist world would look like this (and actually, during the time of Stalin, it really did. Little known fact, Stalin killed more people than Hitler, and almost as many jews)

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pilottobombadier said:

Even pure capitalism does not work. You still need the social services in place, and you sure as hell need government intervention to make sure that the capitalist system isn't compromised - which it will be, and faster than any other system because where there's wealth and no rules, there's hell to pay.

That comment sent me looking for information on which countries have the least regulated economies. Not easy to get an unequivocal assessment of that, but here's a nice interactive map, based on info from the World Bank:

http://rru.worldbank.org/businessplanet/

Singapore certainly appears to be prospering under its regime of extreme economic freedom, but limited personal freedoms. I'll be visiting Singapore less than a month from now, so will be able to judge for myself.

It looks like I made a good choice to buy property in New Zealand... And I can easily believe that the UK is the easiest place to get credit in the world, given how much crap offering loans we're constantly bombarded with.

Janitor said:

Little known fact, Stalin killed more people than Hitler, and almost as many jews

Probably one of the best-known little-known facts, actually.

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double post

Haloless0320 said:

-Is Communism really for the people?


yea, the ones in charge


-How was Unemployment?
-Were there many homeless?


Communism inherently slows progress, if not stopping it altogether. In an almost serf-like state, it is hard to find a job. Unemployment in the Soviet Union was incredibly high


-Were there many homeless?


the soviet government built entire apartment complexes that were never filled because the bureaucracy was so bad that no one ever got around to getting people off the street into them. of course, they were so poorly put together that you'd have died in them anyways.
people stayed in the streets because there was no where to go

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Thanks janitor

I guess Communism and all other Gov's performance is based on who is running it.

We should be run by robots (jk)

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I think probably the best form of government is a social democracy, where stuff like healthcare and education is paid for by the government, but the people still have the right to vote and freedom of speech.

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Persoanlly I'm against all forms of currency all together. I still work to get it because no one's gonna listen to me and just give me the stuff I want, but money is a very very very dirty substance. And I don't mean because of all the bacteria from all the people passing it around with their hands.

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Janitor said:
I do think that a Communist world would look like this (and actually, during the time of Stalin, it really did.

That novel is criticizing dictatorial governance, including fascism and the Soviet model, that failed to achieve any form of communism as it had proposed. A communist world would work somewhat like a set of open-content wikis, if the world could be seen as a web site.

Grazza said:
That comment sent me looking for information on which countries have the least regulated economies. Not easy to get an unequivocal assessment of that, but here's a nice interactive map, based on info from the World Bank:

http://rru.worldbank.org/businessplanet/

Well, that seems to show how suitable they are for various business purposes. While regulation may be a factor (since most regulation is there to supposedly protect the interests of the country), other factors chime in, such as general stability, current development, corruption, and natural wealth. Some regulation is actually necessary to avoid some pitfalls and dangers, even, at least for some forms of business (excluding maybe the ones where you make a quick buck, take a dump in the place, and fly away to Switzerland).

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Janitor said:

I like what Ayn Rand has to say. Me==Libertarian. That being said, I don't think communism really works at all. I hate the US social programs.

However, I dont think anyone can make any valid point arguing for/against communism/capitalism. look at any religious sect, Christianity, Islam, etc. If you bring up the flaws of Catholicism to a Catholic, sure enough he will still believe in it, and defend his position by saying that those acts were not truly Catholic. No matter what flaws you bring up, a true believer will stay firm in that belief. Likewise with political/economic systems. A Capitalist/Communist/Anarchist/Libertarian/Objectivist/Feminist/Libertarian etc. who truly believes in a particular system will not be deterred by pointing out past examples.

So having said that I dont think that an objectivist world will look like this but I do think that a Communist world would look like this (and actually, during the time of Stalin, it really did. Little known fact, Stalin killed more people than Hitler, and almost as many jews)



Well with all these new things like the patriot act it's almost like 1984.I mean of course they arent reading our thoughts(yet)

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Texas Libra said:

Maybe not overnight, but human nature sure has changed a lot in the past millennium ;)


Yes it has, but I do not believe pure communism is where it's headed. I think some socialism may be involved to some extent, but communism as described by late 19th century/early 20th century authors, no.

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Grazza said:

That comment sent me looking for information on which countries have the least regulated economies. Not easy to get an unequivocal assessment of that, but here's a nice interactive map, based on info from the World Bank:

http://rru.worldbank.org/businessplanet/

Singapore certainly appears to be prospering under its regime of extreme economic freedom, but limited personal freedoms. I'll be visiting Singapore less than a month from now, so will be able to judge for myself.


I don't think you get what an unregulated economy is. It's an economy where things like inside-trading are legal. I'm not talking about reduced bureaucracy, I'm talking about fewer laws in general.

Insider trading and predatory practises that would be illegal in most sane economies would not be illegal in a purely capitalist model, and these are concepts that endanger capitalism. That's why pure capitalism is bound to fail - because it allows those that have the resources to push everyone out of the market to do so, and thus killing the drive necessary to not only maintain socio-economic stability, but also ensure that you're society is able to grow.

On the flipside, communism implodes on itself by not allowing anyone to be better than the other, thus killing the drive to be the best, simply because no matter what you do, how well you do it and how vital it is, your rewards and status will never improve.

Pure socialism implodes on itself because...well...you get the nanny-state. Enough said.

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Haloless0320 said:

Stalin was a lunatic.I always got a creepy feeling when I saw pics of pripyat since that city saw so much blood,with the nazi Occupation and Stalins Collectivization plans(I think it was Pripyat).
I haven't read much about Marx but I've been reading up on Lenin alot.In my opinion I think he was a great man.

Don't forget Chernobyl. Prypiat's a ghost town now.

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MasterOFDeath said:

Don't forget Chernobyl. Prypiat's a ghost town now.


I saw,as is Limansk and Rostok.(sorry,I went on a Stalker tangent here lately)

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