Tuesday, April 22, 2014

We Need A Better Class Of Communists

The graphic is funny, and exaggerated, but there's a grain of truth in it. The reasons are hard to get at, though, but I'm willing to give it a try.

First off, the differences have to do with both time and place. In 1950, communism was bound up with Russian, or Soviet, nationalism. Traditionally, it's said that Trotsky was a proponent of international-ism, considering protection of the Soviet Union secondary to spreading the revolution elsewhere, while Stalin was the opposite. Accepting that, the Soviets under Stalin were highly nationalistic, or at least statist (considering that a lot of the USSR was not Russian, the nationalism was of the empire variety, but despite Stalin's non-Russian ethnicity, Russian nationalism was at the core of it).  And if you're going to be a nationalist, you do things that keep the nation healthy and united. And the list on the right includes the exact attitudes a citizen of a healthy country should have, with a little extremeness here and there, like shooting drug dealers without trial.

American communists of that era were of course not nationalists for the most part, but were basically traitors to the nation, who took their orders from Moscow, and worked to defeat the United States in whatever way they could. At the same time, though, since they were working for Moscow, they soaked up some of those Soviet communist attitudes, in spite of themselves. They were not into weird sex and drugs, weren't intrinsically anti-military, and, back then, were actually proud to think of themselves as advocates for, and sometimes members of, the working class. The idea of wrecking Western culture by promoting all those things on the left column was already there, à la the Frankfurt School, but hadn't percolated down to the average party member. Indeed, a lot of them would have been horrified at these ideas, because they were sincere dupes, many of them, and didn't really want to destroy civilization. On top of that, in 1950, they were still transitioning from their promotion of American patriotism that they'd exercised in order to support the US effort to defend the Soviet Union in WWII.

But the Soviet Union fell, so there was no outside force to work for or cooperate with, so American communists were free to do everything they could to bring Western Civilization down. By this time, the communists have nothing to do with the working class, but are obsessed with the interests of the non-working class, to include the welfare-state proletariat, especially the non-White portion, and the Wall Street financier class. An interesting flip: they've gone from championing the working proletariat and the petit bourgeois against the parasite crony capitalist set, to sneering at the first two and working for their annihilation, in order to replace them with a permanent class of money manipulators and bureaucrats lording it over a formless Lumpenproletariat that would have disgusted Karl Marx himself. In short, Obamaism.

That's my explanation of the contrast. Comments and corrections welcome.
And I just got a comment:
Ondřej Veselý wrote:
"Important clarification: majority of the so called 'russian commies' were not really commies but rather apolitical people doing their stuff in a communist country, while the modern leftists are highly ideological."
And I think he's dead-on correct. That Russian on the right up there was almost certainly apolitical, as Ondřej says, but of course was nominally a communist, which is misleading to us, as the average apolitical American at the time was nominally anti-communist. Like Lenny Bruce said about the KKK, a lot of members weren't ideological, but just following the crowd :)


  1. The modern Marxist is down with the LGBT, but when Howard Fast had a homosexual in the story, the homo was usually a villain.

  2. Well, all I know is that East Germany wasn't in any danger of being overrun by Muslims and Africans. Communism is certainly better than Liberalism.