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Socialism, and Why it's a Dirty Word to Some - My Story

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posted on Dec, 3 2010 @ 09:34 AM
Mods, if this has been posted in the wrong forum, please move it to where you deem it belongs. Thank you.

Lately there has been a lot of discussion about Socialism on this board. Some Americans wonder why it is that a large number of people are so vehemently opposed to Socialism, when the idea that a country of people shares responsibilities and takes care of each other seems so noble. How could it possibly be a bad thing? Everyone has what they need to survive, and everyone works toward a common goal. How can this idea possibly turn such a large part of the American population off? Are they selfish, greedy and evil? Is it that they want to have the freedom to take more than they need to survive? Are they really so callous that they would deprive the needy of shelter and food if it meant that in order to do so they would have to give up a few luxuries?

I thought to myself; What better way to explain Communism to somebody who’s only read the word in a book, or heard it spoken in a College classroom than to relay my family’s story? I may not be an expert on the history, I may not know all the facts, but personal experience has got to count for something, doesn’t it? Although I’m reluctant to share so much detail about our lives on the internet for everyone to see, I hope that maybe it will enlighten a few people to what it was like to live in a Communist country. Please keep in mind that my country was one of the more free Communist countries out there, if that makes any sense.

I am going to tell my story by dividing it into different segments.

(By the way, I hope that if there are people here who have lived in or escaped from China, Cuba, Russia, or any of the other former Soviet countries, it would be great if you shared your story as well. If you think you see something in my post that is untrue or inaccurate, I welcome you to correct me. I think it would probably benefit me, and those who haven’t experienced it for themselves.)

The Beginning:

Although I’ve been living in the U.S. for many years, I was not born here. I was born in Eastern Europe, in a country most Americans don’t even know exists. They may know it by it’s former name; “Czechoslovakia”. When I was born, Czechoslovakia was already neck deep in Communism. The Russians had taken full control and moved a lot of their military into our country by force many years earlier. Russia was a terrible place to live at the time, so many ordinary Russians were more than happy to come to our country to live. It would not have been so terrible, except that some of the older folks I’ve talked to say that many (not all) of these people were rude and felt entitled to everything. They received special privileges or treatment. How true that is I don’t know, I’m just repeating what I was told.

There wasn’t really much we could do about the invasion. We were outnumbered, because in total our country had maybe 15 million people. We were surrounded by countries who wanted a piece of us on all sides. We could either side with Hitler or Stalin, or we could be blown to bits by our neighbors (Hungary and Poland) who’s Governments had been drooling over our land for centuries. As terrible as it was, first we sided with Hitler, because he promised he wouldn’t let Poland or Hungary touch us if we did. Once the Germans were defeated and the war ended, we were invaded by the Russians under the guise of “liberation”, and that’s how the country turned Communist. The process of subjugation began.

Story of an old-timer:

My grandmother told me a few interesting stories about a year ago. She never talked much about this part of her life to me before, so I was more than happy to listen. She told me about the time she was 16 years old, and the Cold War was beginning. A group called the Partisans formed. They were composed of Slovaks and maybe some Russians who fought against the Germans (that’s my guess). They came by her family’s house and had an automatic weapon pointed at them. She said that while they sat on a bench, she and her family were laying on the floor. They were unable to sleep, because they were left to wonder when these men would decide to shoot them. I’m not sure why they held them at gunpoint. I can’t remember that part of the story, or whether she explained it at all.

My grandmother recalls the day the Russians rolled into her village in tanks. It was winter time, and somehow they ended up having a snowball fight. They were tossing snow at each other when my grandmother decided to take a handful of snow and showed it in one of the Russian soldier’s faces and eyes. He fell off some short steps. He became so upset that he pulled out his pistol and was about to shoot her dead. One of the other soldiers talked him out of it and she ran away. She ran to her aunt’s house to hide. She didn’t come out for three days. The angry soldier was told that she ran into the field somewhere and that they couldn’t find her. The other soldier talked to his superior about the angry soldier’s behavior, and her family was assured that nothing would happen to her if she came home. He lied for her and told the others that she was very sick from spending the night hiding in the field.

She then talked about the German soldiers who came to stay in their home. She said they had skulls on their helmets. She and her family gave them food to eat, sowed up their socks or whatever else they needed. Among them was one who spoke Hungarian. He told her mother and father not to leave her alone in the house, because they would surely try to rape her. He asked them not to tell anyone what he had just told them, because he would probably get into trouble as well. I’m not sure his buddies knew he spoke Hungarian. All in all the Germans treated and protected her family while they stayed there. They had an understanding that as long as they took care of them, the soldiers in turn would treat them well. One day while my grandmother was doing something around the house, she hung something over their radio. This caused it to crash to the floor and break into pieces. They used the radio to communicate and hear what was going on in the field. She thought they would kill her when they found out. She started crying. When the soldiers found the broken radio they weren’t angry. They told her that it was O.K. and told her she could stop crying.

These were some of people’s first experiences of Communism. Although it may sound terrible, many old-timers will vouch that when German soldiers came to stay with them, the experience was night and day compared to the Russians. In a twisted sort of way the Germans seemed more civilized. Of course we’re not talking about what happened during the war, but I’m sure you understand what I’m getting at.

Confiscation of Private Property:

My family owned a good portion of land. They weren’t extremely wealthy by any means, but they were well-off. My great-grandfather was a farmer. He had fields he tended to, and he had some livestock such as two or three cows, chickens, two horses, and who knows what else. When the Communists took control, they decided that it wasn’t right that any man should own that much land or livestock. They confiscated his land and his livestock, and made it the people’s land and livestock. To add insult to injury, they still expected him to take care of these animals and the fields, but he wasn’t allowed to keep the profits. The profits went to “the people”, but what that really meant is that it probably went into the pockets of the crooked Comrades. The same thing happened to farmers all over the country. Everything was nationalized. Often the Government called it’s citizens for “brigada”. This meant that if you were a student or an able-bodied person, you were sometimes required to help out in the fields. You didn’t have a choice. If you didn’t have a job, one was assigned to you. If you refused to work, they could throw you in jail.

Many of the wealthy families were kicked out of Czechoslovakia when the Communists took control. They claimed that the wealthy were the reason for all their suffering. The families (whether guilty or not) were allowed to take only as many possessions as they could carry. Their crime was that they were rich. It didn’t matter whether or not those families were charitable to the towns in which they lived, or that they had lived their whole lives in a country they loved. Their homes were then burglarized, all valuables stolen, and property severely damaged. This also happened to a few churches. The Communists liked to use these buildings as chicken coups just to make a statement. They destroyed many historical buildings and lost a lot of valuable historic artifacts and artwork. Castles were emptied of most of their valuables and one-of-a-kind furniture. Some of the furniture and books were used as firewood. It would be one thing to appreciate beauty and use it to the benefit of the community, but it’s another to senselessly destroy these things out of anger. I guess when you’re cold in the winter with acres upon acres of forest around you, it’s still necessary to keep warm by burning antiques.


In school kids were being indoctrinated at an unprecedented level. We were required to call our teachers “Comrade Teacher” instead of “Mr. Olach” for example. I remember being taught that Russia is the best country in the world. My parents always got a kick out of that. They were anti-Communist, especially my dad. They would ask me in front of their friends “What’s the best country in the world?” and I would proudly respond “Russia!” They would laugh about it, but I’m sure on the inside they were concerned.

In class during art lessons we would receive coloring pages filled with Russian cultural subjects, we would read Russian poems translated to our language, and we would be made to practically worship the “partisans” (the same people who nearly blew my grandmother’s family away) and Russian war heroes. If I recall correctly, the classrooms had our Communist president hanging on the wall. In fourth grade kids were required to start learning to speak Russian.

All kids were required to become “pioneers”. Girls wore a light blue blouse and dark blue skirt with a red scarf around the neck. Boys were dressed in the same colors, but with long pants on. On Communist holidays we would gather in front of a Communist monument in town, we would line up, recite Communist rhetoric and sing Communist songs. As a kid I thought it was all fun. I was having a good time! I was a good little Communist. Lol! We didn’t really understand at the time what we were signing, so basically it was meaningless to us. We just did what our teachers wanted us to do.

One week out of every year the school would gather all the kids and take us to a big meadow where we would practice with smoke grenades, crawl on the grass, and perform other physical activities which were heavily borrowed from a military boot camp. Again, we were kids and we thought it was fun and games. We got to be outdoors, and that’s all that mattered to us.

We were forced to go to the dentist by the school. It seems like a great thing. Free healthcare, right?! Well, it wasn’t great at all. We were brutalized at the dentist’s office. The dentist would drill our teeth without using any anesthetic, so we felt absolutely everything. If we started crying from the pain, the dentist would tell us to be quiet and stop sulking. I ran away from the dentist’s office numerous times, and had to be escorted by two of my classmates who made sure I stayed. It was a great experience, one that has stayed with me for years. 

When it was time for a student to attend college, getting into a good school was very difficult. It wasn’t what you knew, it was WHO you knew. The comrades at the top would first ensure spaces for their own children, their friend’s children, or to the children of those who could bribe some comrade to put in a good word for them. You could have been an absolute genius with excellent grades, but that wasn’t always enough to get you admitted, unless maybe you vowed to use your intelligence to somehow further their agenda. Then they could show you off to the world, much the way they forced athletes to be the best they can be for their country. Their job was to be the best, and if they couldn’t do that, they were dealt with. The whole Capitalist world had to know that Communists were superior to them in every way.


As I mentioned previously, everyone had to have a job of some kind. Unless you were pregnant or in school, you had to have a job. If you didn’t have one, one was assigned to you. Don’t get me wrong, its not like you couldn’t work in the field of your interest. Of course you could, but whatever it is you were doing, you knew you were doing it to make the Communists look good. Maybe this seems great at first glance, but the problem is that you couldn’t really start your own business if you wanted to. The job you got, chances were that you were not getting paid enough to make it worth the trouble. Since there was no positive motivation to make you work harder, most people worked just enough to make it look like they’re doing something. They weren’t doing their best. Imagine if the Government forced you to be a fry cook for the rest of your life. Forget your dreams and ambitions. They had no place in this Communist society. Everything you did was supposed to benefit the society as a whole, regardless of what YOU wanted to do with YOUR life. Sure you could be an artist, a musician or a writer! That’s if you painted Communist murals, played in a Communist orchestra or wrote stories, poems and novels praising the Communists. It was one way of getting paid. I guess in that way you could still live part of your dream. God help you if you painted, sang or wrote something against the Government. That’s how many creative people learned to use symbols to spread their discontent. Sometimes they were caught, and sometimes they weren’t. I remember hearing about conspiracies of how some singer met his demise because of the things he sang about. Sometimes people disappeared.

If there was a popular American song and people liked the tune, you could be sure that the Communists would have singers use the same music and tone of the song, but sing completely different lyrics in Slovak or Czech to give the populace some kind of alternative. I don’t know how it was in other Communist countries, but in our house we listened to American music and we watched a few American movies on videotape. There was an underground market for them. Many times they were terrible quality, and someone in their living room would record themselves over the audio to translate everything a character in the movie said. Sometimes you could hear their wife washing dishes in the background. Lol! Communists didn’t want you to watch American movies, because they were afraid that this would give people ideas about leaving, or trying to achieve the same kind of lifestyle. As I mentioned earlier, our country was slightly more lax than other Soviet countries, so I don’t remember us getting into trouble for owning all those videocassettes. The Communists just didn’t allow those movies to play on TV. We had all of maybe five channels, and half of them were in Hungarian. We watched whatever they wanted us to watch. Luckily there was enough Czechoslovak programming for children as far as movies and cartoons are concerned, which didn’t have anything to do with politics. At least nothing I caught. Communism was all around us, but as children we didn’t quite notice unless our parents talked about it.

In restaurants, in stores and in Government offices the customer was not always right. The workers were downright rude. You wanted to buy something? They were doing you a favor by serving you! You practically had to beg for someone to help you out. After all, they didn’t own the store and they weren’t making much money from it, so to them you were a nuisance. It forced them to do their job, and they didn’t like it much. They were dissatisfied with their poor lives, and you added to their misery. If you didn’t like the way they talked to you, too bad. It’s not like you can jump into your car and go to some store down the street. There was one furniture or electronics store per region if you were lucky. Either you bought something there (if they even had anything worth while on the shelves), or you went home empty-handed.

If you didn’t like something, they’d tell you to hit the road, Jack. In a Capitalist society this kind of behavior would be financial suicide, but not in a Communist country where such things as bread, jeans and bananas were so rare. People would stand in a huge line waiting to be able to buy oranges or bananas, or bread. They put up with it, because it was a once or twice a year treat!

People also didn’t make enough money to buy themselves decent cars. Most people traveled by bus, train, bicycle, or tram. You had three choices. You could either buy a Trabant (Russian car), a Skoda (Czechoslovak car), or maybe Fiat (French car). They were very small cars, and some people would drive them literally until the floor completely rusted out and you could see the pavement under your feet. People who owned sedan-sized cars were considered very well-to-do. I remember seeing only one person in the neighborhood who had such a car, and I remember everybody admired it. Compared to the cars that you see here in the U.S. it was nothing special at all.

People didn’t make enough money to have luxuries such as German Shepherd-sized dogs. It cost too much to keep him fed. If people had dogs, they were small. My dad happened to be a very intelligent person who’s skills the Comrades sought. He was an innovator and improved on a lot of heavy machinery. They needed him and praised him. They even published his picture and name in a newspaper and talked about his achievement (can’t remember what it was anymore) to show people what an exemplary Communist he was. Lol! When they invited him to join their Communist party, he flat out refused. This angered them a lot, but they were torn. They needed his talents, but he stood against everything they believed in. They tried to coerce him by paying him an above average salary, which gets me to my point. We were able to afford a German Shepherd! Lol!

When my dad brought the dog home, a lot of our neighbors were very jealous. They expressed their jealousy in a strange way. They asked my dad why we needed such a huge dog. We didn’t need the dog, but we wanted to have the dog. Here in the U.S. people take for granted that they can own practically any animal as a pet, and nobody is going to question whether they need that animal. Nobody asks “why buy it? It doesn’t produce any milk and it’s not good meat to eat”, because everyone here understands that one is free to have anything one works hard for. If you want the companionship of a dog, you have the freedom to buy one as big as you want, as long as you treat it right.

As with everything else, the Government taxed us on the dog. It must have been a significant amount. One winter day a stray German Shepherd puppy wandered into our yard and befriended our dog. We decided to keep him since our dog was willingly sharing his food with the puppy. Unfortunately when the tax man came and saw that we now had two dogs, he decided to tax us on both of them. As much as we hated to, we had to give the puppy to my uncle. It was heartbreaking for me as a kid. A touching fact about this story is that even though my uncle lived about 20 miles away, the puppy ran away from his house and we found him in our back yard the next day! I have no idea how he found his way home, but my uncle said the dog was watching the road from the back window all the way to his house. Of course we had to drive him back over to my uncle since we couldn’t afford to pay taxes for both dogs.

To conclude the employment segment, basically people were making very little money, and they couldn’t afford the luxuries of almost anything. Many gardened and owned chickens or rabbits not because they enjoyed it, but because it was a way to sustain them when they couldn’t afford to buy food at the grocery store. Here in the U.S. people garden because they enjoy it and they want fresh food.

Paranoia, Control and Censorship:

People were not free to speak their minds. If your neighbor didn’t like you, he could report you to the Government. He could make up any crazy story about how you said you hated all Communists and hated the Government, and that’s when the secret police would show up at your front step and start questioning you. They would try to force you to give up other people who have the same ideas as you do. They would threaten you and say to you that if you didn’t turn them in, you would serve jail time.
Although Communists were atheists, in Czechoslovakia they were a little more lenient on people who decided to go to church. Although neither of my parents were very religious, my family befriended a Catholic priest in town. He proved to be a very exemplary and great human being over the years. He told us that the Communists asked him to spy on people who came in to confess. He never turned anyone in and never gave the Communists any information on anyone in town as long as he lived.

People at work were ordered to spy on their coworkers all the time. The news on TV never said anything positive about the Western world. It was always “evil capitalists this, evil capitalists that”. They would lie to us and say that people in the Western world are starving right now. They’re poor and miserable, and compared to them we are very well off. I remember watching a propaganda video from decades ago where the Communists claimed that the U.S. was responsible for the potato beetle, who was destroying our crops. Maybe it was true and maybe it wasn’t, but I’m leaning toward it being a lie.

Naturally in order to perpetuate these ridiculous lies, people were not allowed to travel outside the country unless they chose Russia, China, Hungary or Cuba as their destination. My aunt went to Russia once. When she came back she told us stories of how there were rats running around in the grocery stores and restaurants, and that there was barely any food on the shelves. It was two or three times more miserable over there, than in Czechoslovakia. Hell, Czechoslovakia probably seemed like paradise in comparison! So much for Russia being the best country in the world.

If somebody through a very long process was allowed to travel to let’s say Germany, that person was not allowed to take his whole family with him. He was forced to leave behind one child in order to ensure that the family would return back home. There were many instances in which men would escape to the West without their families. They would leave behind their children and wives, or sometimes they would escape with one child left behind. They would promise to try to come get the child at a later time when it was safer. If people ever returned from the Western world once they crossed that border, they were not allowed to say anything positive about it. Sometimes the Communists threatened those who were about to travel outside the borders by stating that very bad things would happen to their families if they didn’t come back. If our Communist society was so awesome and the Germans were suffering and starving on their streets, why would they have to threaten people to get them to come back home? Well, the answer is obvious.


Czechoslovakia had some beautiful old (medieval) towns, castles and mansions. It still does, but when the Communists rolled in, they decided to destroy the countryside by building hideous apartment blocks in all the cities. The idea was to house as many people as possible, as cheaply as possible. You still had to pay rent on them, of course. They weren’t free. The apartments were tiny in most cases, and most of them were one bedroom apartments where a family of four had to make do. There wasn’t enough money to keep the buildings maintained, so a lot of the time these buildings would start falling apart without anyone being able to fix them up or repaint them. They littered the countryside, and every single one was just like the other. People used to joke that when they would come home from work, they would have a hard time finding their own apartment or building, because they all looked the same. The buildings became an absolute eye-sore over the years and they didn’t blend in well with the natural surroundings at all. The point was to create the cheapest housing possible, and they certainly achieved that goal.

Communists believed that the bare essentials is all that a person needed. Two of my aunts lived (and actually still do) in one of these buildings, though they’ve moved several times in the past. I remember staying with them when I was a child for a couple of weeks in the summer, and experiencing great thirst at night. Why? Because at 10:00 or 11:00PM they would shut off the water in the building, so you couldn’t take a drink and you couldn’t flush the toilet until morning. People didn’t buy bottled water like we do here, they relied on what came out of the faucet. I also remember getting stuck in the elevator. It wasn’t uncommon, so when it happened you’d have to yell for somebody to come and open the door. The elevators were tiny. You could barely fit two or three people in one, and it always felt like a death trap. To their credit, 30 or 40 years later those same elevators are still in operation! LOL!

In the smaller villages and towns people still lived in ordinary houses. Some were as old as 300 years and they still looked great compared to “Lego land”. I have to say that the Communists developed some of the UGLIEST architecture in the world. There are some 3rd world countries who’s shacks look better. Lol! One of the worst-looking cities (in my opinion) is “Poprad” which just happens to be very close to one of our most beautiful natural features, the High Tatra mountains. You’ve got ugly lego land in the foreground, and beautiful snow-covered mountains in the back. Having done this to the landscape should almost be a crime.

Hospitals and Healthcare:

Healthcare was free. Anyone could go to a hospital and get treated for whatever. Whether you would walk out of that hospital alive is another matter. For example my dad injured his arm and was ordered by his boss to go get it treated. The doctor (surely a genius) not only insisted his arm was broken, but he put the cast on the wrong arm! My dad went home, had his friend cut the cast open, and when it was time to go back to the hospital to get it examined, he had his friend make him another cast so he wouldn’t get in trouble for taking it off.

See, the problem was that even though good doctors existed, they felt that the stress and workload they had to endure was too much. Their salaries did not reflect their hard work, so some decided to escape and go to countries where they would be better appreciated. Some might argue this is very selfish of them, but just imagine yourself working your butt off, yet remaining in the same, miserable financial position for the rest of your life. It takes great sacrifice and martyr-like attitude to be able to stick to that job, not to mention having to worry about an oppressive Government watching your every step. People have their limits.

Hospitals were not very well funded. Doctors didn’t have all the equipment and medicine they needed. There just wasn’t enough money for everything. There wasn’t enough money to provide new technology, new tools or more beds. Even though the healthcare was for free, in many cases it was terrible. That’s not to say that they screwed up a lot, but many times the resources just weren’t there.

Sometimes when people would go to a doctor, they would bring him either money or presents. It could be homemade sausage, or chocolates, or alcohol. They did this to sort of bribe the doctor to do a good job for them, or to take them first.

The Escape:

My dad was increasingly being threatened by the Communists. He was not afraid to speak his mind, and would sometimes say anti-Communist things. Was this a smart move on his part? I don’t know. Was it better to say one thing and believe another, or was it better to speak your mind? He refused to conform. His boss was getting paid less than he was, and that led to some tension. Somebody accused my dad of trying to start a revolution. When he was younger he served in the military, had been a sniper in the special forces, and sometimes liked to go to the shooting range. We had some air rifles at home. He used to take me with him sometimes to teach me to shoot. I guess maybe he thought I might have inherited some of his talents. One day the secret service showed up at our front door, and said they needed to search our house for weapons. They accused him of gathering weapons for the revolution. My dad showed them we only had the air rifles, but I guess this wasn’t satisfactory. They left, but they would visit him at work every now and then, trying to coerce him into giving up some names. They threatened him that if he didn’t turn in people which shared his ideas, he would spend ten years in jail. Of course ten years could mean twenty years, or maybe a lifetime. Who knows if you’d even survive prison! I guess it would depend on how long the Communist regime would last. My dad didn’t want to turn anybody in, and he didn’t want jail time. It came down to only one possibility, and that was escape.

He and my mom were very secretive about their plan. Nobody was allowed to know, not even his mother. They made it look as if we were going on vacation to Hungary. That’s what they told me as well. They asked me to pack a backpack, and that’s all I had. That’s all I thought I needed. A couple of our friends would accompany us on this “vacation”, a husband and wife. The wife was pregnant. When the day came, my grandmother came to our house. She was crying and I didn’t understand why. She suspected that we would never return, and that she’d never see us again. My dad lied to her and insisted we were coming back. I tried to comfort her saying we’d be gone just two weeks! It’s just a vacation! Thinking back, my parents seemed to keep it together pretty well. We were leaving behind a house full of everything we owned, including our dog in the back yard. We couldn’t take him with us, as it would have been too suspicious. My dad even bought a new satellite dish just for the purpose of pretending like he was going to install it when we got back. Nobody in their right mind would spend money on a satellite if they didn’t intend to return, right?
Six of us got in the car and we started driving toward Germany. It was going to be an eight or ten hour drive across country. Since my parents took both me and my sister, there was a real fear that they would never let us past the border. For my parents and our friends it was a nerve-racking trip. When we got to the border, my parents asked me to get down on the floor and hide. If any of the border guards had seen me, it would have been the end of our trip. Luckily my dad had a friend who worked on the border. He set it up in such a way that this was the guy who got us through. I remember him in his uniform looking at us, and looking at me. He checked their passports and waved us through without a hassle. As we crossed that border I could feel the sense of relief in everyone. We were now in Germany. My parents couldn’t believe it. It must have felt amazing.
We drove until we reached Munich. We parked the car and headed for the nearest police station we could find. It was beautiful there, nothing like the Communists described. Our friends were very nervous about having left the country. They were afraid of what would happen to their families. Although my parents tried convincing them to stay, they were just too terrified and decided to return a day later. I’m sure they must have been questioned by the secret police when they returned. I’m sure they asked a lot of questions about us.

When we got to the German police station, my parents asked for political asylum. Long story short, we were granted to stay, were provided with housing, my dad was given a community job, and we lived a few miles from Munich. Once I realized that we were staying in Germany for good, it started sinking in. Not only did I own only what was in my backpack, but we left our dog behind!

While we got acclimated to our new home, back across the border my grandparents, family and friends were being interrogated by the Communists. They wanted to seize the house and property, but couldn’t as it was in my grandmother’s name. When they came to take our belongings, she stood in the doorway with an axe and dared them to come in. Needles to say they changed their minds. My mom’s side of the family was absolutely furious. They didn’t get to say goodbye, and now they were being interrogated and questioned. Eventually it stopped, but while it lasted it was not pleasant for them. Some family members really resented us for it for years, and on some level maybe still do.

My grandmother took care of the house and our dog. Unfortunately some of our neighbors were still unhappy about us owning a German Shepherd, so somebody hired a guy to shoot our dog. Yes, that is how petty some unhappy people can be. Actually it was fairly common practice for petty people to settle their disputes by killing their neighbors dog or goat, or whatever. Miraculously our dog got away, but suffered a gun shot wound to his stomach. My grandmother nursed him back to health. When he got his health back, a few months later the guy who didn’t get the job done the first time decided to work a different angle. He poisoned our dog. This time he didn’t pull through. The poison made his throat swell up to the point where he couldn’t even take a drink anymore, and died of starvation. When I hard this news I was so incredibly angry, I can’t even describe. The pettiness and disgusting behavior of some of our miserable human beings is ugly beyond belief. The dog never hurt anyone, so I couldn’t understand why somebody would do that to him to get back at us.

Two years later Communism fell in our country peacefully, and people were able to feel freedom again. They were free to travel across the border and saw that the Western world was great. They realized all the lies they had been told. They began building their economy on the Capitalist model in order to bring their lives out of darkness. It was a very difficult transition since many people lived nearly their whole lives under Communist rule, but for the younger generation it came a little easier. You see, the older folks were so used to being taken care of and told what to do by their former Government, that when they finally had the freedom to do whatever they wanted, they actually started missing the cage they had been imprisoned in for 30 or 40 years of their lives. They didn’t know how to adapt to this new environment quickly enough. Nobody was there to hand them a job. Nobody was there to tell them what to do or how to do it. They still had a very hopeless, negative outlook on life, and if you suggested to them that they should start a business or tell them there are great opportunities out there, they would still have a very defeatist attitude. “That’s impossible. It will never happen. I’m not that lucky. They’ll just turn me down. I’ll fail. It will never work.” Communism seemed to suck the life out of them. They quit before they even tried. It took nearly 15 years to get the country back on it’s feet, but they made tremendous progress in just a few.

So, that’s my story and my experience of what Communism does to a country. Some might understand better now why I feel the way I do about Socialism, and why I’m so turned off by it. Here’s where it went wrong:


Somebody decided that rich people were the bane of their existence. Somebody decided that it wasn’t fair that one person should have so much, and another person should have so little. Somebody decided the solution to this problem was to kill or exile all the rich people, and take their belongings by force. Somebody decided that now everything belonged to “the people”, and everyone was entitled to everything. Somebody then decided that if you disagree with him, you are “the people’s” enemy and must be dealt with. At first the Communists allowed people to leave the country of their free will. Those who had enough sense left before the borders closed shut. The people who stayed and disagreed with the regime change were either imprisoned, killed or exiled. Old people stayed because they had no choice. The goal was to weed out the system of people who disagreed with it and who would work against it. The secret service took care of that for the most part. People were rewarded for snitching and for being good little Communists. As long as you did what they wanted you to do, you were O.K. So there you have it.

Some might wonder what’s wrong with this. Well, nobody should have the power to force you to do what they want you to do. If you come up to me and say to me’ “Your land is now my land, but you’re still going to farm it for everyone around you”, I’m gonna say “Go farm it yourself”. If someone tells me I’m not allowed to say anything bad about your idea of utopia, I’m gonna say; “Go #$%@ your system.” Some people like to enjoy the fruits of their labor, but these people think you don’t deserve more than anyone else around you, even if they’re not working as hard as you are. Everyone is equal, everyone has all the same stuff, everyone is taken care of, just do what we tell you to do.

Tell me why you would want to force an entire country to live by your model. Can’t you just develop your own small community of people who want the same things as you, and leave everyone else alone? Take for example the Amish. They live the way they want in our society. If your system works so well and your little community proves that it works, more people will join you of their own free will. People desire to be free and to be able to do what they want to do. Nobody likes anyone else controlling their lives, dreams and aspirations. When you are forced to work for the good of society, you are also forced to give up your life. What you want doesn’t matter anymore. You’re just another worker bee, and your dreams and aspirations should never get in the way of the “good” of society as a whole. The redistribution of wealth means that everyone has the same things you do, which also means that all those things are spread very thin across the board. When some people work harder than others, yet those others still receive the same things as the hard-working people do, it is going to create a lot of tension and resentment. It will create a society of people who will do their best only when the Government threatens their lives, and the lives of their families.

To those who still feel that Communism is possible, I suggest that you create your own little Communist society within a capitalist country (the way I mentioned above), where you have the freedom to either keep living in it, or move out if it proves to be something you don’t like after all. It makes no sense to force millions to live according to what you feel is right for you. People are going to leave in droves to escape your oppressive ideas, and soon you’ll be left with no industry. You’ll have to build walls around this country to keep people in!

In conclusion, I probably left some things out that I’ll remember after I post this. I hope my story helps some people gain an understanding of why immigrants fled to the U.S. to escape Communism, and why Socialism is such a dirty word in America. Many of the horror stories you’ve heard are true, they’re not just Capitalist propaganda. Some people were happy living in Communism (the ones at the top telling everyone else what to do, and the ones who were happy with the absolute bare minimum), that’s a fact, but most people were very unhappy in Communism,…. and that’s a fact too.

edit on 3-12-2010 by 2manyquestions because: (no reason given)

edit on 3-12-2010 by 2manyquestions because: (no reason given)

posted on Dec, 3 2010 @ 09:48 AM
Great account...I was involved in a discussion on Socialism vs. communism vs. capitalism yesterday, I think your personal account is much more important than anything taught to us. Thank you for sharing!

posted on Dec, 3 2010 @ 09:52 AM
Thank you for your story. Your writing skill is as compelling as your historical recount, and warrants you considering you writing your memoirs for publication. Star and Flag!!

People don't understand that socialism/communisim/fascism/statism is a soul-killing, anti-human practice. Only people that have suffered through the barbarity of those practices can speak to how inhumane and evil they truly are.

I have observed that when you get someone talking about "the good of the community", or of "communal fairness" or central planning, you should get away from them as soon as you can. THEY have one goal in mind: their totalitarian control of YOU.

We have seen this recently with barack obama when he eschewed the economic success of cutting taxes for everyone across the board because of (and I quote) "the fundamental issue of fairness." He would dismiss obvious economic success in order to exercise his and his cronies' desire to "centrally dictate" the amount of "fairness" someone else should have.

And yeah, the republicans have done it, too. Daddy Bush talking about the "new world order", no doubt "ordered" by him, his sons, and his fellow gang members is a perfect example.

I think nice people get duped by the psychopathic tendencies of people like Barack obama talking about "helping the less fortunate". He uses the oldest con in the book: prey upon peoples' sense of fairness, justice, helping the little guy, charity. It is evil, because he knows that is just the switch that allows him to turn on the statist machine.

Again, kudos to you, and thank you for sharing.

posted on Dec, 3 2010 @ 10:02 AM
Wow. Amazing story.

If anyone couldn't figure out by reading between-the-lines when reading the Manifesto that the chief emotion underlying communism is hate, then this account should set that straight.


posted on Dec, 3 2010 @ 10:05 AM
Nice story, but i have lived with electronic mind control techs used non stop on me for 18.5 years in london. I have lived an adult life that the stasi in east germany would of been proud of doing to someone, and this was doen by uk gov.

So where is freedom?

Just because you think you are free in west does not make it so.
edit on 12/3/2010 by andy1033 because: (no reason given)

posted on Dec, 3 2010 @ 10:22 AM
reply to post by andy1033

Andy, this is getting ridiculous.
I and several other's have repeatedly asked you to give details on the allegations you constatly make.

So yet again; please give some sort of account of what you allege the UK government has done to you.

posted on Dec, 3 2010 @ 10:29 AM
reply to post by 2manyquestions

Thank you so much for taking the time to share this detailed and engaging story.

My own father escaped from the communist east bloc with similar horror stories. He escaped from Hungary back in the late 1960's and eventually made his way to America where he earned his citizenship through military service.

When I say "escaped" - I mean he literally escaped over barbed wire fences and through a mine field while being chased by border guards.

Communist countries have to put up barriers around their country to keep people in, because anyone with half a brain will flee to somewhere that has property rights.

posted on Dec, 3 2010 @ 10:55 AM
People just don`t get it and can`t see the forrest before the trees.

It`s not a certain system that is evil, it`s the selfish people in power that makes it (look) evil.
These people in power don`t believe in equality and solidarity, they believe they can control us because we are stupid frankly, or atleast most of us, and they are right as you can see on these posts,

Every political, religious and economic system even how good or bad the initial intention was of creating the system, has been used and abused just for the sake of power and control and to dumb and numb the people.

History books anyone?

Socialisme as a system has a lot going for it, but it is misunderstood because it never materialized, it was an illusion, a veil over the eyes of the people, abused and misused by brutal dictators.

Look at the world, everything is falling apart, because it`s all about intention, and the intention of the TPTB isn`t pure, it`s selfish.

Forget about left and right, capatlism and communisme, good and`s all a wast of time
Its all about pure intent, and that will change the world eventually
Not even the most cleverly thought out brilliant system can go without this to be a succes.

posted on Dec, 3 2010 @ 01:25 PM
Both capitalism and communism suffer from the same basic problem as any other type of society you will see today - a power structure that is essentially shaped like a pyramid, with the masses at the bottom and the elite on top. A truly Utopian society would be one in which there is no power structure, and every single person has the right to do whatever he/she wants to do.

As for why communism is such a 'bad word' in America - it's simply that way because Western society has been conditioned to think that way - Communism is bad, as is so eloquently illustrated in the first post in this thread, but capitalism is just as bad, and for exactly the same reasons that communism is bad (the biggest one being that it's run by the same people) It just plays out a bit differently in the long run.

posted on Dec, 3 2010 @ 01:46 PM
reply to post by MMPI2

Thank you for taking the time to read it. I appreciate that. I also appreciate the fact that you seem to understand what I was trying to convey. Some posters will come here and they might say "Socialism isn't bad, its the people who used it to further their own gain!" Well, that's true to some extent of course. No idea or belief is dangerous until it is exercised by the wrong people. Just like a bullet is useless without a gun until somebody places it in the magazine and pulls the trigger.

Socialism, Capitalism, or any other system (including religious), they're all just words until they are implemented by a human being who sees to it that everyone else follows it. Buddhism seems like an appealing belief, and while one has the freedom to either choose to believe it or not, it's great! Once somebody tells you that you MUST believe and practice Buddhism, it becomes dangerous.Some people will not want to, because they have their own religious beliefs. They will rebel and fight against it even though Buddhism as an idea and belief system in and of itself is not a dangerous one.

I don't mind at all when people express fondness for an idea such as Socialism. Everyone should be free to live the way they choose. If they want Socialist communities and they all want to live together, they should be welcome to do so. If Capitalists want to live elsewhere, let them do so. Just don't try to shove it down everyone's throat by brainwashing their children. If I was back in former Communist Czechoslovakia, we wouldn't be having this discussion, whereas in the U.S. I'm discussing it right now without the fear that the secret service shows up on my doorstep tonight. In the U.S. if I want to speak my mind against the President, I still can. As long as I am not threatening his life directly, I am free to express my opinion all I want. You couldn't do that in a Communist country. I hope people understand the difference.

posted on Dec, 3 2010 @ 01:51 PM
This is a pretty good thread on this subject.
edit on 12/3/2010 by Misoir because: (no reason given)

posted on Dec, 3 2010 @ 01:52 PM

Originally posted by mnemeth1
reply to post by 2manyquestions

Thank you so much for taking the time to share this detailed and engaging story.

My own father escaped from the communist east bloc with similar horror stories. He escaped from Hungary back in the late 1960's and eventually made his way to America where he earned his citizenship through military service.

When I say "escaped" - I mean he literally escaped over barbed wire fences and through a mine field while being chased by border guards.

Communist countries have to put up barriers around their country to keep people in, because anyone with half a brain will flee to somewhere that has property rights.

Thanks for contributing your grandfather's story! That was the reality for a lot of people back then. Here in the U.S. where people haven't had to endure this kind of control over their lives (yet), they become curious and wonder if they are the nation that could make it work. Maybe so, and maybe not. So far we have a dozen countries who have proved otherwise. People here question their Government and their intentions, and it's only natural to be distrustful. When our Government has been telling us for years that Socialism is bad, some people are going to question it and wonder why the powers over us try so hard to preach against it. Of all the things to be distrustful of, this may be the one and only thing that the U.S. Government (in my option) got right.

posted on Dec, 3 2010 @ 01:54 PM
reply to post by Misoir

I think that's a pretty good thread you put together. I had time to read part of it, and will continue with the rest soon. So far I couldn't agree with you more.

posted on Dec, 3 2010 @ 02:01 PM

Originally posted by andy1033
Nice story, but i have lived with electronic mind control techs used non stop on me for 18.5 years in london. I have lived an adult life that the stasi in east germany would of been proud of doing to someone, and this was doen by uk gov.

So where is freedom?

Just because you think you are free in west does not make it so.
edit on 12/3/2010 by andy1033 because: (no reason given)

I don't know anything about mind control in London, but I can answer the rest of your post. While it's true that England or the U.S. are not running on a perfect system, I would prefer that imperfect system to the one my family escaped from. I don't know any place on this earth (and maybe it exists somewhere far off) where people are completely free, living in paradise. You have to choose between degrees of freedom. I can tell you that it's very likely that there are more happy people in Brittain or U.S. than there are under a Communist regime such as in North Korea or Cuba. Some people have the ability to find happiness anywhere and under any circumstances. Others need the freedom to do or say whatever they want without somebody else trying to silence them by using brutal force.

posted on Dec, 3 2010 @ 02:12 PM

Originally posted by smokinsinger
Both capitalism and communism suffer from the same basic problem as any other type of society you will see today - a power structure that is essentially shaped like a pyramid, with the masses at the bottom and the elite on top. A truly Utopian society would be one in which there is no power structure, and every single person has the right to do whatever he/she wants to do.

As for why communism is such a 'bad word' in America - it's simply that way because Western society has been conditioned to think that way - Communism is bad, as is so eloquently illustrated in the first post in this thread, but capitalism is just as bad, and for exactly the same reasons that communism is bad (the biggest one being that it's run by the same people) It just plays out a bit differently in the long run.

I agree with the first part of your post, but the second paragraph not so much. It's not that Western society has been conditioned to think Communism is bad, it's that people from Communist countries escaped and told their horror stories! Mine is very mild compared to what others had/have to go through on a daily basis under this cruel regime. Western nations saw the conditions in which people had to live in Communist countries. I was in Germany when the Berlin wall fell, and all the East Germans flooded into West Germany. They felt like they were in paradise compared to where they used to live. People risked their lives and the lives of their families in order to escape. I have yet to hear or see any people escaping a Capitalist nation. Nobody is holding you here. You have the freedom to travel to any country around the world, and you can immigrate all you want, as long as some other country allows you to stay. That is a huge difference between Capitalism and Communism.

Capitalist nations around the world are not perfect by any means, (and believe me... people have grand fairytale ideas about the Western world because they dream of living in it every day), but that is a weak poison I'm willing to swallow so I don't have to live and go through what my fellow countrymen and women had to endure back home during those years. I can safely say that even though the U.S. or other Western nations aren't perfect, I've really enjoyed living here and would prefer them a hundred times to Cuba or North Korea.

posted on Dec, 3 2010 @ 02:51 PM
reply to post by Senser

Socialisme as a system has a lot going for it, but it is misunderstood because it never materialized, it was an illusion, a veil over the eyes of the people, abused and misused by brutal dictators.

Socialism as a system has nothing going for it. Wealth cannot be distributed or shared. It has nothing to do with leadership and everything to do with the failings of the system.

Socialism and Communism inherently penalize the creation of wealth. To understand this, you must first understand what wealth is. Wealth is not money in a bank account. That is capital - that is a medium with the potential for wealth. Wealth is productivity - whether it be a service (taxi) or a good (laundry detergent), or a combination (restaurant). I cannot give you the productivity I am part of when working a factory line or busing tables, no matter how valued that productivity is or isn't.

Now, what people should learn really quickly, is to separate concepts of work and income. Harder work does not equate to or justify more income. Contribution to productivity does - just because you worked really hard to remove that bolt with your teeth doesn't entitle you to more pay than the guy who removed fifteen bolts with a fraction of the effort utilizing a tool. That's an intentionally silly example - but the ultimate value of a person, good, or service is related to its efficiency. Efficient operation allows for more to be done with less time, energy, capital, etc - which means lower prices, more net profit at the same profit margin, and more time/energy/capital to spend on other things.

You cannot be given wealth via the mailbox - it just doesn't work that way. Wealth is a measure of your contribution to society, or how well society regards you (not necessarily the same thing). Socialism undermines this principle by attempting to say that all are entitled to a standard of living at the expense of those living above that standard of living. The wealthier you are, the more proportionate income you are expected to provide. What is one's motivation for becoming wealthy?

Look at the world, everything is falling apart, because it`s all about intention, and the intention of the TPTB isn`t pure, it`s selfish.

I often hear this "TPTB" thrown about on these threads.

Who do you think that is? Or, what, perhaps?

It's a nameless, faceless identity concocted to direct your negative sentiments towards and blame on your misfortune. But no one needs to construct an idol to do that - typical response is to blame one political party, or another, or the banks - even if somewhat ambiguous, a specific target is assigned for the witch-trials to ensue.

This is something else. You have no faith in any deity other than human abstraction, and therefor construct a nameless, faceless identity that -must- be in control of all worldly events. All of the chaos and confusion is part of a plan - part of some kind of order and has some kind of meaning. This is the foundation of the "powers that be" belief system.

I can't argue with faith - but I'm more than willing to discuss theology with you.

Forget about left and right, capatlism and communisme, good and`s all a wast of time
Its all about pure intent, and that will change the world eventually

Continuing the theological discussion:

You must have a fairly poor opinion of the average person if you believe that intent is what governs actions in the world. That, or "TPTB" have tapped into the energizer battery of intent. By this logic, intent has gotten us where we are today - and that means most of the people on the planet are intending for this to happen, or that a very small group of people somehow have enough raw intent to overpower the masses.

posted on Dec, 3 2010 @ 03:29 PM
This thread reminds me of the old joke that "socialism is just fine and dandy until you run out of the other person's money to spend."

There is a lot of truth in the semi-humorous line. Eventually, the well runs dry. The problem is that when the "central planners" run out of money and resources, what do they do? The answer is they become aggressive to the point of theft at gunpoint, extermination and murder.

Take a gander at what happened in the Ukraine during Stalin's reign. The ukrainian people were starved to death by the communist central planners because they wanted to enforce the doctrine of "collective farming" by starving 7 or 8 million people to death.

Karl Marx was undoubtedly one of the most evil people who ever lived. Here's a few of his actual writings, in his words:

On peaceful Movements:
"May the devil take these people’s movements, especially when they are ‘peaceful.’"

On Terrorism:
“There is only one way in which the murderous death agonies of the old society and the bloody birth throes of the new society can be shortened, simplified, and concentrated, and that way is revolutionary terrorism.”

On Dictatorships:
“Every provisional political set-up following a revolution requires a dictatorship, and an energetic dictatorship at that.”

On Democrats:
"Those dogs of democrats and liberal riff-raff will see that we're the only chaps who haven't been stultified by the ghastly period of peace."

On Democracy:
“Democracy, as well as every other form of government, must ultimately break to pieces.”

On Family:
“After the earthly family is discovered to be the secret of the holy family, the former must then itself be annihilated in theory and in practice.”

On Authoritarianism:
"Revolution is certainly the most authoritarian thing there is; it is the act whereby one part of the population imposes its will upon the other part by means of rifles, bayonets, and cannon"

On the Russian Soviets:
"In the Russian vocabulary there is no such word as honor."

On Violence (Chicago Tribune Interview - 1879):
"Well, then, to carry out the principles of socialism do its believers advocate assassination and bloodshed?" "No great movement," Karl Marx answered, "has ever been inaugurated Without Bloodshed."

On Equality:
“I used the expression "modern mythology" to describe the goddesses of "Justice, Freedom, Equality, etc."

On the Chinese:
“It would seem as though history had first to make this whole people drunk before it could rouse them out of their hereditary stupidity."

On Race Genocide:
“In Central Europe only Germans, Hungarians, and Poles counted as bearers of progress. The rest must go. The chief mission of all other races and peoples, large and small, is to perish in the revolutionary holocaust."

These people haven't changed. They would as readily kill you or me today to enforce their ideological/political stance as quickly as they would have in Russia in 1918.

Communists, Socialists and Statists are lying, stealing, murderous, cowardly lovers of death, war and destruction. Make no mistake about it.

posted on Dec, 5 2010 @ 03:27 AM
reply to post by Aim64C

I`m not going to argue with someone who does not have any ambition to see the truth.

If you can`t see clearly what is going on at this moment it is probably too late for you..
You are clearly not inspired to see what is going on, and that is fine, at your own pace you will find out eventually.
As the saying goes " the pupil will be ready when the teacher appears''

With your presumptious arguments you only ventilte that you are shallow, and why the earth are shallow people
posting on ATS i may wonder, probably because of their large ego which they can`t address anywhere but here.

Your arguments are so easy to lay aside i`m not going to, I really think it is a waste of my time as you won`t even consider how wrong you are.
I`m definately not saying i know everything, but i do have a hunger for the unfiltered truth and i allways have had,
But your postulating approach is a 13 in a dozen, I see that all arround me, especially in the country I live in,
which I have no doubt you will fit in perfectly, and no, it`s not in the USA.

If you could guess which Western Europe country i mean i would be it would mean you have some insight.

posted on Dec, 5 2010 @ 04:55 PM
reply to post by Senser

I`m not going to argue with someone who does not have any ambition to see the truth.

It is my observation that you lack the discipline to refrain from posting 'against' someone you disagree with. A fate we both have in common.

If you can`t see clearly what is going on at this moment it is probably too late for you..

As a person who requires corrected vision - I can tell you that when I see things clearly, it means I'm looking through a construct of someone else. Taking a philosophical approach, I'm wary of anything I feel I understand far too clearly.

You are clearly not inspired to see what is going on, and that is fine, at your own pace you will find out eventually.

And what is going on? There's a lot going on in this world - what, specifically, do you wish to draw attention to?

As the saying goes " the pupil will be ready when the teacher appears''

The best teachers always ask their students a lot of questions.

With your presumptious arguments you only ventilte that you are shallow, and why the earth are shallow people.

I fail to see how the 'argument' is presumptuous. I could have made the post about three or four times as long by getting into the history of economic exchange starting with the small communities that worked with no concrete monetary system on up to modern society. I would demonstrate how the free market is a logical evolution of small-community "communism" and is the system that survived evolutionary attrition. I've done this before in other threads, and I figured it would only be worth it if the debate drew out.

Of course, with regards to "TPTB" - it's really pretty simple. I work with and in the government quite a bit. I have been part of discussions with heads of industries. All of them can be summarized with the expression "herding chickens." Most of the people involved in these are absolute idiots that could be replaced with trained monkeys that would be more effective. Those of us with half a clue or more are left fighting against the most abundant thing in the universe (stupidity) just to keep the roof from caving in. The business world is a little less crazy than government - but stupidity is a property of humans and slips its way into everything.

Occasionally, interests will overlap and there will be the illusion of a plot or plan. There really is none - not on any large scale. Some people will have overall plans - maybe a small group within a party will all think something is a good idea.

Look at the stars - you can connect the dots any way you choose - all of which are subjective and not really "truth."

posting on ATS i may wonder, probably because of their large ego which they can`t address anywhere but here.

I suppose I've found a bird of a feather.

Your arguments are so easy to lay aside i`m not going to, I really think it is a waste of my time as you won`t even consider how wrong you are.

Your time is obviously very valuable, I am honored you took the time to insult me and the quality of my argument. I find myself with too much free time these days and a desire to carry on debates with people. I am ashamed to say that my time spent responding to this post is far less valuable than yours.

I`m definately not saying i know everything, but i do have a hunger for the unfiltered truth and i allways have had,

I prefer the search for information, and then to look at that as many different ways as possible. Searching for an answer will always net you an answer. Your desire to have that answer will influence how far away from logic you will travel for a convenient answer.

But your postulating approach is a 13 in a dozen, I see that all arround me, especially in the country I live in,
which I have no doubt you will fit in perfectly, and no, it`s not in the USA.

I'm not familiar with your analogy - but a Baker's Dozen is 13.

I generally learn to fit in with just about any crowd. I move about without regard for social cliques.

If you could guess which Western Europe country i mean i would be it would mean you have some insight.

I'm not sure how it is at all relevant. Posters on ATS generally have the same thing to say about other people in their country, so there's nothing really to go off of, spare for your competence in written English and expressions/dialect - and I am not familiar with European dialects and expressions. I don't generally bother to pay attention to Europe's little details as I am drawn more to the U.S. and Pacific regional politics.

posted on Dec, 5 2010 @ 08:06 PM
reply to post by Aim64C

I think the problem of your interpretation of TPTB is that you have not read enough alternative history books,
with which i mean the books which shed an alternative point of view on events in history.
But if your line of thinking is straight,you probably wont even be curious to read them and even if you did, you wont know how to connect the dots. Your reasoning has to bend corners if necessary but this is done inherently and is difficult to learn.

This is the reason why i`m not going to spoonfeed you with my interpretation of the power structures in the world.
You propably are an intelligent man with many talents but to understand the world as it is today takes alot of reading historybooks about 2.000 bc untill the present and understanding why exactly certain events occurd, what the motivation behind them were and placing them into context.You won`t find ciritical notes about the USA in history books you read in school, these will tell you that the USA is out to spread peace and democracy and will protect the good citizens of the world against all evil, without even mentioning the economical and geopolitical motivations for going to war for example.

You accused me for being too cynical about people and yes and I am cynical but I am also aware of all the good things, even things we are not aware off yet.
But as you stated that stupidity is a common trait amongst most humans, this stupidity is easilly exploidable
by people who have the knowledge and means to furher their own agenda. no?
To state that all the sh#t in the world is just caused by circumstancial stupidity is quite a copout to say the least,

It was Bushes stupidity for invading Iraq right? incompetence of norad that did not prevent 9-11 right?
stupidity of the banks handing out those loans and and selling them as packages on Wall Street while on the side betting against them right?

I could go on and on beginning with early history and you will see that nothing has really changed in regard to the power agenda, as powerhunger is also a bad trait as stupidity is of humans.

There is so much corruption in the world and there has allways been, the thing is that people don`t realise this fact. The only thing is that the corrupted and unfair system has gotten so bad now that they cant hide it anymore, especially with all the free flowing information on the internet, so distractions are set in place.
Still it is only the tip that we see, and people think the structure beneath it is still good and sound but in fact the whole good old system has rotted and it is ready to collapse under its own weight.Its not only corruption perse but if money and economcic growth is regarded the most important over everything else, the social cohesion will fall apart and you will get situations like in 3rd world countries especially if there is a serious economic meltdown, which is unavoidable as the amount of debt all of the world and the other crap traded on wallstreet will make sure of that.

You should go to India and see what you think of that capitalist society, where 6 year olds are prostituted in abominal conditions, where 1% is rich rand the other 99% are dirt poor and the corruption is rampant, provoked by the measly wages of goverment workers.

No spreading of wealth you said? If this is ur utopia than than i think your country will have it soon, and uless
you are not filthy rich by now you won`t get into the 1% club i`m afraid, you might get to make them sandwiches though.

The west has had the lion share of the wealth of the world, after the collapse things will chamge drastically.
Hope you will see it coming when it does...

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