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Kraichgauer
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29 Nov 2022, 3:14 pm

magz wrote:
Dox47 wrote:
Just a reminder, this all sprung from an undirected shot I took at apologists for communist atrocities that someone else decided to make personal, I can't really help it when other people jump in front of my comments.
Undirected, unsubstantial and unnecessary, as vague accusations always are.

Now, can we go back on topic?

An interesting question was asked and not answered: Who was considered "communist"?

I believe the answer is: every state that self-identified as such. They all happen to have been either very short-lived or soon ended up as more or less brutal totalitarisms...

Which suggests an observation that communism (unlike socialism, by the way) is fundamentally unstable as a state system. I'd love to continue but I'd ask Pepe on how much off-topic in this direction he welcomes.


According to right wing talk radio, a communist is anyone with a D. in front of his or her name.


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cyberdad
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29 Nov 2022, 3:24 pm

magz wrote:
An interesting question was asked and not answered: Who was considered "communist"?


There's literally books on the topic. There were people who were actual self-identified as communists. They never stood a chance.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Smith_Act ... ty_leaders

Then there was the witch hunt
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/McCarthyism

And how anti-communism was weaponised
https://www.npr.org/2012/02/14/14686208 ... emies-list

The legacy today is that anyone associated with the left is incorrectly labelled a "commie", even corporate democrats.



Dox47
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29 Nov 2022, 4:01 pm

Kraichgauer wrote:
According to right wing talk radio, a communist is anyone with a D. in front of his or her name.


Why would you listen to those gasbags?

Also, you don't have room to talk about overly broad generalizations for your political opponents.


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Pepe
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29 Nov 2022, 6:03 pm

magz wrote:
Dox47 wrote:
Just a reminder, this all sprung from an undirected shot I took at apologists for communist atrocities that someone else decided to make personal, I can't really help it when other people jump in front of my comments.
Undirected, unsubstantial and unnecessary, as vague accusations always are.

Now, can we go back on topic?

An interesting question was asked and not answered: Who was considered "communist"?

I believe the answer is: every state that self-identified as such. They all happen to have been either very short-lived or soon ended up as more or less brutal totalitarisms...

Which suggests an observation that communism (unlike socialism, by the way) is fundamentally unstable as a state system. I'd love to continue but I'd ask Pepe on how much off-topic in this direction he welcomes.


I am not an on-topic Nazi.
I am happy for the thread to evolve.
What I don't tolerate is misrepresentation.

Communism is a failed political system.
Both Russia and China have acknowledged this by evolving away from it.
Neither is "Communist" in its original form.
Capitalism is seen to be of importance in both countries.


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ToughDiamond
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29 Nov 2022, 7:51 pm

magz wrote:
Dox47 wrote:
Just a reminder, this all sprung from an undirected shot I took at apologists for communist atrocities that someone else decided to make personal, I can't really help it when other people jump in front of my comments.
Undirected, unsubstantial and unnecessary, as vague accusations always are.

Now, can we go back on topic?

An interesting question was asked and not answered: Who was considered "communist"?

I believe the answer is: every state that self-identified as such. They all happen to have been either very short-lived or soon ended up as more or less brutal totalitarisms...

Which suggests an observation that communism (unlike socialism, by the way) is fundamentally unstable as a state system. I'd love to continue but I'd ask Pepe on how much off-topic in this direction he welcomes.

Thanks for intervening, Magz, and I have no problem about your not being Cornflake. Belittling may not harm confident people, and it hasn't hurt me personally here, but I'd be surprised if everybody on WP turned out to be so invulnerable, given the autistic proneness to being easily bullied I've heard so much about.

I'm glad Pepe is OK about discussing the definition of communism here. What I originally asked was, how does the book itself define communism? Luckily I think I've found the answer to that all by myself without buying the book:

The authors use the term communism to mean Leninist and Marxist–Leninist communism,  i.e. the actually existing communist regimes and "real socialism" of the 20th century; they distinguish it from small-c communism, which has existed for millennia, while capital-c Communism began in 1917 with the Bolshevik Revolution, which Stéphane Courtois describes as a coup.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Black ... m#Overview

So, it seems I can rest assured that it doesn't really conflate the entire ideology of communism with the behaviour of leaders in certain countries. There's also a lot of info about the book in general on that page, and 339 user reviews can be seen here:

https://www.amazon.com/Black-Book-Commu ... merReviews

Enjoy!



Kraichgauer
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29 Nov 2022, 7:58 pm

Dox47 wrote:
Kraichgauer wrote:
According to right wing talk radio, a communist is anyone with a D. in front of his or her name.


Why would you listen to those gasbags?

Also, you don't have room to talk about overly broad generalizations for your political opponents.


Plenty of Americans do listen to those gasbags, and swallow every syllable as if it was the word of God.
If I make broad political generalizations, so do you.


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cyberdad
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30 Nov 2022, 1:01 am

Kraichgauer wrote:
Dox47 wrote:
Kraichgauer wrote:
According to right wing talk radio, a communist is anyone with a D. in front of his or her name.


Why would you listen to those gasbags?

Also, you don't have room to talk about overly broad generalizations for your political opponents.


Plenty of Americans do listen to those gasbags, and swallow every syllable as if it was the word of God.
If I make broad political generalizations, so do you.


75 million last time I checked



magz
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30 Nov 2022, 2:36 am

ToughDiamond wrote:
magz wrote:
Dox47 wrote:
Just a reminder, this all sprung from an undirected shot I took at apologists for communist atrocities that someone else decided to make personal, I can't really help it when other people jump in front of my comments.
Undirected, unsubstantial and unnecessary, as vague accusations always are.

Now, can we go back on topic?

An interesting question was asked and not answered: Who was considered "communist"?

I believe the answer is: every state that self-identified as such. They all happen to have been either very short-lived or soon ended up as more or less brutal totalitarisms...

Which suggests an observation that communism (unlike socialism, by the way) is fundamentally unstable as a state system. I'd love to continue but I'd ask Pepe on how much off-topic in this direction he welcomes.

Thanks for intervening, Magz, and I have no problem about your not being Cornflake. Belittling may not harm confident people, and it hasn't hurt me personally here, but I'd be surprised if everybody on WP turned out to be so invulnerable, given the autistic proneness to being easily bullied I've heard so much about.

I'm glad Pepe is OK about discussing the definition of communism here. What I originally asked was, how does the book itself define communism? Luckily I think I've found the answer to that all by myself without buying the book:

The authors use the term communism to mean Leninist and Marxist–Leninist communism,  i.e. the actually existing communist regimes and "real socialism" of the 20th century; they distinguish it from small-c communism, which has existed for millennia, while capital-c Communism began in 1917 with the Bolshevik Revolution, which Stéphane Courtois describes as a coup.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Black ... m#Overview

So, it seems I can rest assured that it doesn't really conflate the entire ideology of communism with the behaviour of leaders in certain countries. There's also a lot of info about the book in general on that page, and 339 user reviews can be seen here:

https://www.amazon.com/Black-Book-Commu ... merReviews

Enjoy!

Marxism-Leninism and "real socialism" of the 20th century are indeed distinct from various other forms of communal life (medieval monasteries come to my mind) and definitely they are not "anything left-wing or focusing on common good".

My personal opinion is that communism simply does not scale up well. You can have a family living like "from each according to their ability, to each according to their needs", you can have a small village running like that, but once you enter the level where people become anonymous, plenty of people will downscale their abilities and upscale their needs so the system either collapses or quickly evolves into something else. "Marxism-Leninism" in its practice was a particularily nasty kind of "something else".


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ToughDiamond
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30 Nov 2022, 10:22 am

magz wrote:
Marxism-Leninism and "real socialism" of the 20th century are indeed distinct from various other forms of communal life (medieval monasteries come to my mind) and definitely they are not "anything left-wing or focusing on common good".

My personal opinion is that communism simply does not scale up well. You can have a family living like "from each according to their ability, to each according to their needs", you can have a small village running like that, but once you enter the level where people become anonymous, plenty of people will downscale their abilities and upscale their needs so the system either collapses or quickly evolves into something else. "Marxism-Leninism" in its practice was a particularly nasty kind of "something else".


I think that states the problem in a nutshell. Those of us with compassion would love the state to be run like a good family, but it seems the state is just too big to be capable of that quality. I think if there's ever going to be a viable solution, it will have to address that.