Any 'Good' Communist Regimes?

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Jimbee68, Feb 27, 2019.

  1. Jimbee68

    Jimbee68 Member

    You have to admit, the U.S. media and history classes has us all brainwashed. I only started realizing it when I got older.

    Anyways, my question is twofold: (1) Is there or have there ever been a benevolent Communist regime? Not one where they suppress your rights and rule with an iron fist. But one where the common welfare is their top concern. And secondly (and interestingly, I think [as a notion]): (2) has a communist regime ever been democratically elected, by the people, in other words? I certainly am not aware of even one. But maybe that is what they want us to believe:fearful:.

    BTW, I am a democrat, with both lower and uppercase 'D'. So I would certainly never support any communist regime. But the US is or at least has been so anti-communist, almost to the exclusion of all else (even decency and democracy, sometimes) that you have to wonder.

    :smile::smile::smile::smile:
     
  2. 6-eyed shaman

    6-eyed shaman Sock-eyed salmon

    In the 20th century, economic Marxism failed to conquer the western world. In the 21st century it has returned in the form of social Marxism. Like a virus that keeps on mutating.

    As for your question, no there hasn’t been a good form of communist regime. The path to hell is paved with good intentions.

    But that’s not gonna stop the NPCs of this forum from insisting that real communism has never been tried. :rolleyes:
     
  3. Balbus

    Balbus Super Moderator Super Moderator

    Wow a bear trap.

    Thing is millions of words have been spent on this so anything brief is not going to do it justice but I’d start by asking what you mean by Communist?

    I mean it is a problematic term especially in a US context because there are people on the right that call anything left wing communist or inevitably ending in communism.

    Do you mean socialist, well there are many differing types of socialism and many countries have ‘socialist’ elements within them.

    I mean has there been a purely capitalist state, first you would have to define what was meant by ‘pure’ capitalism. I mean was the laissez-faire capitalism of the 19th century concerned with the common welfare of the majority of the people?

    There have been many state that have claimed to be Christian but feel very short when examined.

    I’d say there have never been an actual communist states which doesn’t surprise me as I see it as a utopian idea that is very unlikely to exist in the real world.

    *

    We would then need to go on to what you saw as been ‘benevolent’ and ‘democratic’?

    Many imperialist claimed they empires rule was benevolent in the sense of well-meaning and good for the people been ruled. British imperialist were extoling the virtues of the British Empire while overseeing the Indian and Irish famines.

    As to democracy its modern meaning is only really a recent as to democracy its modern meaning is only really a recent concept, it has been argued that only with the civil rights era Voting Rights act 1965 did the US become a modern democracy.

    I’ll leave it there for the moment.
     
    stormountainman likes this.
  4. unfocusedanakin

    unfocusedanakin The Archaic Revival Lifetime Supporter

    Perhaps Russia would have been without Lenin. He was not the most popular man and other communists had a more equal view of post revolution Russia. And Lenin is not in line with Marx. They did not end up in power though. Cuba has pretty good healthcare and education considering the sanctions. It's not a popular right wing idea but it works in theory. There have just been so few examples of it being tried. Think of if Washington was a dictator. That does a lot to discredit this silly new idea of democracy. I mean in the end you have a king so it shows it "never works".

    Communism is a utopian socialism. More of an idea of what a perfect society will do with socialist polices long term when we no longer need to rank people. I don't think it can truly work as long as people need to rank themselves with income. In some sort of Star Trek society maybe it could.

    I also don't think the switch to 100% communism is as simple as Republicans want you to think. As if we have a high tax on the wealthy for health care and boom now no one is "rich" anymore. It's such a simplistic view of economics and public policy.
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2019
  5. Meliai

    Meliai Senior Member

    True communism has never been achieved. And no, i'm not saying it has never been tried, like 6 predicted people would say, i'm saying it has been tried but never realized. True communism is nothing but a utopian ideal, like anarchy. It can't actually work on a large scale, and even on a small scale you often hear stories of communes falling apart for this and that reason.

    As we can see from Russia, North Korea, Cuba, any attempts at communism generally result in authoritarian dictatorships. Although there are countries that arent communist and are worse off than Cuba. Cuba doesnt have the wealth and modern luxuries that capitalist economies have, but it is still somewhat functional.

    And of course countries that employ a mix of capitalist and socialist economies with a healthy, functioning democratic style government have been quite successful. Including the US, although we're at the bottom of the barrel as far as social democracies go.
     
    stormountainman and Okiefreak like this.
  6. Meliai

    Meliai Senior Member

    tenor.gif
     
  7. eggsprog

    eggsprog liberalobamacommunist HipForums Supporter

    Chavez did some good stuff early on in his reign, but didn't diversify the economy at all, and lower oil prices are the main reason that Venezuela is in the position they are in now (and Maduro moved increasingly towards authoritarianism, and is just kind of insane).

    Castro also did a lot of good things in Cuba, especially early on (healthcare, food production, education), did have some degree of democracy, yet also quashed most organized dissent.

    It would be interesting to be able to run a simulation and see where Cuba would be today without the US embargo. It is hard to run a country when the majority of the world is punished for trading with you because your neighbour doesn't like the way you think.
     
  8. GuerrillaLorax

    GuerrillaLorax along the peripheries of civilization

    No there have not been any good Communist regimes. Although there have been, and are, good communists. Their idea of keeping a temporary State is a flawed one, to say the least.

    The Communists at the top are counter-revolutionary if anything. For example after the Russian revolution they massacred the more revolutionary communists and anarchists who didn't want a State, or therefore, a dictatorship. And their counter-revolutionary activities continued into the Ukraine and Spain and elsewhere.
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2019
  9. 6-eyed shaman

    6-eyed shaman Sock-eyed salmon

    In hindsight, it's rather a rotten shame that Marx remained his entire life a psychotic, attic dwelling book nerd, and never became a communist dictator. Unlike all the monsters he inspired who came to power much later.

    This way, there will be NO debate that communism can work and that it just hasn't been done right. Fewer people would've died too.

    "But.. but.. but.. REAL communism hasn't been tried because it wasn't how Marx envisioned it," they insist.

    Well, this is just like an experimenting scientist with a hypothesis for his experiment. A scientist who had a hypothesis that proved wrong after numerous trials.

    "Insanity is trying the same thing over and over again and expecting different results." -Albert Einstein

    Clearly, the above quote accurately describes the mentality of a leftist.
     
  10. unfocusedanakin

    unfocusedanakin The Archaic Revival Lifetime Supporter

    If we are talking science there have not been enough experiments with communism to decide it does not work. Science is not doing something 3 or 4 times and giving up.

    I could apply the crazy label to Libertarian polices as well which in America have much more history.
     
  11. Okiefreak

    Okiefreak Senior Member

    We have to clear up an ambiguity surrounding the term "communism". If you're talking about a society governed by the ideal "from each according to his ability, to each according to his need", that would be applicable to some religious communities, like the Ebionites, monastic societies, the Owenite communities, hippie communes, etc. If you're talking about nation-states, there's never been a community like that on a nationwide scale. If, by Communism, you mean a Socialist economic and political system governed according to the principles of Marxist-Leninist ideology--i.e., revolutionary scientific socialism and dictatorship of the proletariat--I think the answers are "No, and No"." (I understand socialism to be economic system in which the State or collectively controls all, most, or a substantial part of the means of production and distribution in a society.) . That would include China, the Soviet Union, Vietnam, North Korea, Pol Pot's Cambodia, Laos, East Germany, Yugoslavia, the Soviet-dominated states of eastern Europe, and Cuba. This is something of a trick question in that all political and economic systems, being human enterprises, fall short of ideals, like being "benevolent" and having "the common welfare' as "their top concern". Watching the performance of our elected representatives and government officials, it seems to me their top concern is getting re-elected and many would be willing to sell their souls (or already have sold them) to do so--but there are surely exceptions. Party apparachiki in communist countries don't have to worry about that, but are still probably mainlly concerned with personal advancement, staying alive, and having a quiet day.

    In relative terms, I think Communism, in the Marxist-Leninist sense, is really, on the whole, more oppressive than the political systems of most industrial capitalist societies. Unlike the tyrannies of yore, they seek to penetrate or eliminate alternative social groupings, and pursue an "end justifies the means" policy in achieving regime goals. How do we know? I think our own societies and press are sufficiently open and diverse in terms of information and travel to permit a variety of information sources about them. We can also go there and see for ourselves. I've been to China. Nice place to visit; wouldn't want to live there, especially if you're Uighur or Fallun Gong. Much depends on one's values and station in life. If free thought is not your thing, and you don't mind being regimented, living in totalitarian societies might not be so bad, and communist systems do vary in their degree of oppressiveness. So far, China under Mao and the USSR hold the world record in body count from politically motivated mass killings (40 million and 20 million, respectively), and North Korea seems to prioritize building a nuclear arsenal over feeding its people. Compared with Nazi Germany, a runner up, I'd say those regimes have gone farther in establishing brutal totalitarian domination over large portions of humanity. From a distance, in terms of the well-being of the average citizen, I have the impression that Vietnam and Cuba aren't so bad, compared with what life would be like without them. Cuba is a poor country, but has free medical care and education through university, if you keep your nose clean and stay on the right side of the regime. The State will find you a job, but not necessarily the one you want. Amnesty International reported in Vietnam is poorer, more crowded, and highly polluted. Amnesty International reports that the Cuban government continues to curtails freedom of association and assembly, and that "government critics continue to be imprisoned; many report that they were beaten during arrest.". In 2015, Human Rights Watch reported that “the human rights situation in Vietnam [had] deteriorated significantly, worsening a trend evident for several years.” Peaceful activists receive long prison terms for seeking political change or practicing religion.
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2019
    Balbus likes this.
  12. granite45

    granite45 Member

    One big problem is that international capitalists led by the US have tried to squash legally elected Marxist governments. Chile comes to mind with assasination of Allende with the assistance of the “companies” (the CIA and big copper). Then....we got Pinochet a world class brutal dictator. Another example is the fall of Ortega in Nicagauga and the Oliver North fiasco. Compare the economies of Costa Rica and Nicagauga if you want to see how that has worked out. Might an elected truly socialist regime in the future have reason to be distrustful? Who knows how it would work if not subject to external capitalist aggression and right wing terrorism.
     
    Asmodean, eggsprog and Meliai like this.
  13. Okiefreak

    Okiefreak Senior Member

    Who knows, indeed? In Allende's case, he doesn't seem to have been a Leninist, but was certainly a Socialist friendly to Castro. Nationalization of the copper mines owned by Anaconda and Kennicott copper and the communications monopoly of ITT alarmed international investors and led to an international boycott damaging to the Chilean economy. The Republican administration of Richard Nixon feared that Chile would become a Cuban ally in the Western Hemisphere. And so the CIA supported Allende's overthrow. Ortega began as a Marxist-Leninist trained in guerrilla warfare in Cuba and taking leadership of the uprisings against the Somoza dictatorship. After becoming President of Nicaragua in a democratic election, he proceeded to implement sweeping reforms including nationalization, land reform, and wealth redistribution. This led to Reagan Administration support for the right wing rebel Contras, and the covert Iran-Contra deal. Ortega lost the 1990 election, but returned to office in 2006. He seems to have become far less radical in his politics. Amnesty International complains that he oppresses opponents of his regime. The international capitalists have not only tried but seem to have succeeded in "squashing" legally elected Marxist governments in the Western Hemisphere..
     
  14. WritersPanic

    WritersPanic Greasing up my Staff Member Super Moderator

    Time to invest in Alcoa!
     
  15. M_Ranko

    M_Ranko Straight edge xXx

    The one problem that communism always faces is that the monkey brain in our heads, ultimately, does not wish to share with other monkeys, for fear of losing the resources the monkey itself needs to survive. People ultimately always resist sharing as an act of self-preservation, fearing deep down that "there will be nothing left for me, if I give all of mine to others. And then I will perish". Try going up to a chimpanzee to take its bananas, an essential nourishment, away from it, and see the fiercely aggressive reaction you'll get. It's still the same with us too. "I don't wanna share, 'cause then there's nothing left for me! Fuck off, bum! Go get your own banana! Kreegah bundolo!!!!".

    In order to be successful, communism would need people who are willing to sacrifice their own comfort for the benefit of others. But the animal mindset doesn't work like that. Communism is literally trying to fight millions of years of evolution and survival of the fittest, in a world where resources are finite. Or at least were, until advances in our technology partially corrected the situation. But it happened too soon, our brains didn't catch up. The alpha males, the pack leader apes in particular don't even care to learn this new thinking, because that'd mean sacrificing their privileged positions of power, where THEY get to eat the best foods and mate with the best females.

    This is why straight communism will always fail. Because it has to contend with all those millions of assholes, who don't wanna play by the system's rules. Let's look at countries that are, or once were communist: Russians have always been thugs because of the country's violent history. China has always been authoritarian, with all the despotic emperor leaders, who alone made the rules, while your job as the humble peasant was to just shut up, keep your head down and do as you were told. Same with the Koreans. And South America has a strong legacy of corruption because of the practices of their old Spanish and Portuguese conquerors from the days of colonial rule.

    Point being, a system like communism, that calls for altruism and sacrifices for the benefit of others, never stood a chance in such selfish environments. These places were not good for fostering this type of thinking, when it's constantly at odds with the natural human/ape desire to both survive and rule over the other members of the pack. We are literally fucked by our own biology.
     
  16. Balbus

    Balbus Super Moderator Super Moderator

    Oh 6

    Once more did you actually do any studying?

    I mean did you even just google him before making the statement?

    He was a journalist, a writer of novels and plays, travelled extensively, he was also on occasions a bit of a party animal in 1841 he got drunk in Bonn with friends and ‘galloping through the streets on donkeys’. In London you can even go on - The Karl Marx pub crawl – a reconstruction of a recorded incident of Marx and friends ‘endeavoured to 'take something' in every saloon between Oxford Street and Hampstead Road... that is, to have a drink in every pub along Tottenham Court Road.’

    *

    The thing is that as I set out below I thing you, and many on the right, are thinking in the past.

    It’s like saying that since slavery was the basis of many property owning ‘capitalist’ states then it must mean all capitalist want to bring back slavery.

    Ideas have moved on and changed.
     
  17. Balbus

    Balbus Super Moderator Super Moderator

    Ranko

    I agree and disagree because you seem to be suggesting there can only be absolutes, that its black or white – either you have a selfish society or an altruistic one. I think there is a lot more shade and degrees in the mix.

    The other disagreement is with your implication that people are unthinking captives of their ‘biology’ who cannot be educated away from or taught not to act on it – so as to understand and overcome baser urges. Our ‘biology’ might urges us to take what we want (steal, rape or murder) but morality and the law often stand in the way of that.
     
  18. Balbus

    Balbus Super Moderator Super Moderator

    It has to be remembered that Communism as outlined by Marx didn’t just appear out of thin air it grow out of pre-existing socialist, mutualist and anarchist ideas that were around before Marx began writing on the subject.

    Many of these left leaning ideas had come about (and gained popularity) in opposition to the exploitative capitalism of the time, the main progressive ideology been Anarchism of which there were many differing versions most peaceful but some violent (many of the notable terrorist acts of the 19th and 20th century were committed by so called anarchists).

    And with that in mind it should be remembered that communism is not an end, it is meant to be a means to an end, it is the route it was proposed that should be taken to achieve Anarchy. Communism was meant to lead to the ‘withering of the state’ to bring about a world in which there is no need for established government.

    As I’ve said I see Communism (and the Anarchy it is supposed to lead to) as utopian they are theoretical ideals that can be dipped into for ideas but I believe unlikely to be able to exist as a whole (that is until humans evolve into something better than its present model).

    *

    What I’m trying to say is that Communism is not the end all and be all of left wing political thought as many on the right seem to believe (all socialism leads to communism, all lefties are secret Stalinists), the thing is that socialist (mutualist and anarchist) ideas existed before Marx and those differing ideas carried on after Marx and the communist came along and have been changing and adapting since then.

    Many of today’s socialists have taken ideas from pre-Marx, Marx and post-Marx ideas they pick where there see good ideas. They have ‘moved on’ from Communism the problem for many on the right is they haven’t and so as with so many other things their views are stuck in the past rather than looking to the future.
     

Share This Page