I see that my comment,
"I applaud the Russians, and hope this
conflict leads to the reinstatement of another
Soviet Union. God knows we need someone who
can push back"
and the one that followed,
"I am an avid Patriot Rollo, I just don't fit under your interpretation of Geo-Politics... the truth of which, with our conflicts in the middle east and deepening economic recession, the Union is going to fuck itself over unless someone else keeps us from going to far. Oh, and Georgia was the one to spark the conflict in South Ossetia, Russia retaliated, which is what we would do if anyone suddenly tried to wretch control of Alaska, or Texas from us."
Caused quite a stir. It garnered such a barrage of comments and even a Blog directed specifically me for the single comment above, that I have felt it necessary to write this.
First off, I'm glad to actually see people getting passionate about something besides whether Barrack Obama gets away with Racism, or eBaum users getting hard-ons about creationism. It's nice that people are attempt actual conversation and discourse.
Second off, this is probably going to be a long blog on the merits of the Soviet Union and comparisons to modern day equivalents, most of you will not read this but comment it on it anyways, thats alright, because those of you that attempt to argue with the material without reading it, are fucking retards. And I can live with that.
Russia/America- A brief Comparison of Development
Russia, in the terms of its peoples/ideals/history, is Alien to most Americans. Where they have had to fight to survive in a harsh environment, corralled and abused by harsh people ever since the nations inception, America has had quite an easy road in comparison. We had had all the natural resources we could ever possibly need at our finger tips, plenty room for expansion, and no one really willing to get in our way of Manifest destiny. Besides the American Revolution and civil war, the only other time that a foreign power was able to bring a war to the mainland, was in the War of 1812, where America invaded British held territories in what would become Canada, in hopes that the people would embrace our Ideals and throw off the Crown. Already we see Arrogance at this point, a cocky pride where the world must be like us, think like us, and follow us. Sadly the conflict ended in the British Razing the Capitol to the ground. (Canadians still celebrate this as a time when they avoided being conquered.) For most of Russia's history, it had a Serfdom Society. The Bolshevik revolution allowed, for the first time, the masses of Russia to have land, to have a say, and to actually be fed a real meal.
Aspects of Soviet Socialism
Socialism existed even before the term did in much of Russia. The was a very small middle class of Artisans and Merchants, even up to the abdication of Nicholas the II, there was no real Market Economy in place, at least nothing that could compare to the every expanding international Economies of Western Europe. The massive Majority of Russia's Economy was based on Serfdom, where indentured workers (Slaves) were forced to work on large farms owned by Landowners, who then gave a portion of the crop to the Serfs, and the rest to the State. So, most of Russia's population lived in communal areas, sharing food, resources, and working together to maintain some semblance of a society in tight groups. Also, they were completely dependent on the State to supply them with the most basic of Possessions and survival needs. It was an easy transition for most people to accept socialism, as it was just an extension of what they knew before.
Misconceptions on Democracy
Capitalism does NOT mean Democracy. In fact, the Market standard and the Proliferation of Political power to the people are polar opposites when it comes to freedoms and Ideals. Controlled Socialism is the only way a true democracy could work. Money equates out to political power, if you equalize the ratio to which it proliferates in any political process, then you equalize the power held by the masses to their worth. The Market system goes against that in every possible way, a man with 100 million dollars, is worth more to a representative, then a man with a 100 dollars. If it wasn't for Socialist aspects in our current government, such as Minimum Wage Laws, Medicare, Public Education, Anti-Trust laws, Highway Construction, Legalized Unions, ect. we would still be back in the Robber Baron days, where kids would be putting their hands into machinery, working 16 hours a day in hell pits.
CAPITALISM IS NOT DEMOCRACY
Empowering a People
No matter what Lenin and Stalin did to their people, through Purges, War, Famine, they rose above it. The people realized they had raw power in numbers, you cannot possibly understand what it is like for a people to have had absolutely no power through serfdom, to suddenly gain it through hard work, sacrifice, and national Identity. The Soviets, through their massive territory, unified numbers, and finally, industrial might had a strength that was never there before, nothing was ever given to these people. There was purpose, there was determination. Of course, with the fall of the Soviet union, the people lost that power, the concepts of capitalism was forced into the absence of the Nationalized Economy. In essence, they needed a jump start before they could even hope to start the car again, let alone race it down the road. It never happened though, and Russia continues to stagnate.
Current day China was much like the USSR, you have dissidents, those clamoring for more individual freedoms, but you have a society that is utterly concrete. China has the highest rate of Patriotism, national Pride, and Faith in their Government. That comes from the Growing strength of the Chinese people. Even today, there are large portions of Russia that want the old ways again, to be a world power, to evoke respect, and at times fear of retribution. They have the sour taste of the fall on their tongues, and the thirst for the sweet taste of Power again.
The Benefits of the Soviet Union
The cold war was a system of Checks and balances, not only did it lead to intense competition, amazing leaps in technology, and open forums of discussion, it also kept either country from over stepping their boundaries. In other words, it built a brick wall to keep us from going to far. Think of it in this way, the Korean War, if it wasn't for the influence of Russia, we would have most likely have invaded China as they were supplying much of North Korea's weaponry and training, which would have instigated WW3. Also, the idea that we always had to stay one step ahead of the competition lead to the Space Race, the continuing development of Nuclear Power, hell, even the Eradication of Smallpox was influenced in small ways by the conflict, (By the way, the USSR were the only ones to invest any decent amount of money during the first 5 years, and also, if it wasn't for their political pressure, on other Nations, it would have never gone any farther.). Also, it forced us as a people, and a nation, to Adapt, to Listen to the Pulse of the World, and to realize we weren't alone on top. Now that there is no longer the competitor, we have grown stagnant, and Arrogant. Already we have grown complacent in our dealings with China, and our failed Middle East policy (Trying to secure friends in that region to counter any influence that China might hope to gain), we are eager to jump into another Conflict with Iran. We are no longer the Protector against the influence of communism. We have become the conquerers, not the Saviors.
Arrogance leads to Pride, and Pride leads to Aggression, Aggression Leads to Retaliation
Examples of Americas own shaded Past
For those of you who think we are flawless and some how "Good", do not forget that we were the last Westernized country to Abolish Slavery, we Massacred an Entire Race of people to acquire their land (Nice example would be the Trail of Tears), we have destabilized an entire region of the Middle east and plunged it into a civil war with hundreds of thousands of casualties. Not to mention, engaged in assassinations (We have tried dozens of times to kill Castro), sold drugs and Arms to fund hidden cover operations, and during the Red Scare, incarcerated and suspended rights to suspected Communists. And these are just a few events in our own shaded past.
Okay, thats a brief summary for my position, go ahead and knitpick away at it like vultures. Oh, and for those of you who "Remember what it was like", I'm not really buying it. The Soviet Union was Dissolved in 1991, and since the average user to this site is around 16-18, most of you weren't even born yet, and the rest of you, were to young to even care. And lets say you're the ripe old age of 30, you would have been 13, and I hardly call that anyones most informative years.
I expect at least one of each kind of message- (But I left out Spelling Errors, please use them Gratuitously)
"If you dont like it here, then leave"
"You're a communist KGB agent, you fuck"
"You're stupid, and should stop blogging"
"Why can't you support our troops?"
"God loves America!"
If I missed anything, oh well... I'm done.