Question from a confused Democrat

Question from a confused Democrat.

Communism seems like a good idea but wasn't it disproven by the USSR? It couldn't compete with capitalism and had to destroy human rights to stay in power.

Can communism have elections and free media?

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Free, yes, corporate, no.


Somebody else take care of this please I got shit to do.




There is no free media under capitalism. Under capitalism, all media is owned by the capitalists. They exercise soft power, where they simply cease to give funding to media that questions their power or, more likely, never fund them to begin with.

Soviet socialism raised a feudal backwater with crushing poverty, seasonal famines, less than 1% literacy and limited to no industry into an industrial powerhouse with universal employment, universal healthcare, universal third level education and spacefaring capabilities in less than a generation.

That is not a failure.

That was more of a Russian/developing world problem than a Communist problem.

It can only work long term if it has those things.

I'm not a communist, i am an anarchist, fan of Bakunin and Kroptkin, and the best answer i can give to you is the following: Read the latest book from Svetlana Alexievich. She won a nobel prize, surely you can find easily.
If you're really interested into knowing what was life in the USSR, that's just the best. You've got everything in there. Hardcore communists, anti communists, people that were in gulags, people that were happy when the USSR collapsed but nowdays they regret it, people with high hierarchy inside the USSR, average joe's, man, women, everything.
But bare in mind that USSR and communism are two different things. People read Karl Marx and just do with it wtvr they want.

but if there are no elections the leader will see himself as a god

it's inevitable

if there are literally dozens of models how come every single communist country has gotten rid of elections and free speech?

under capitalism if I want to make a newspaper I can make a newspaper

boom I'm free

The USSR never reached full communism but turned out to be more of a state capitalism.

You have elections in democratic socialism has fully open democratic electios but even normal socialism once a socialist/communist is in power they could if they want create a one party system where you can elect the new socialist leader. Communism has no gov so no elections, no leaders, just direct democracy.

As a disclaimer, the radical left is so fragmented that there isn't any consensus on whether the USSR were "real" socialists or not. This is because their economic system was something Lenin called "State Capitalism," which was intended to an economy that would be sustainable on full collectivization. Thus, an analysis of how a revolution in line with Marxist-Leninist thought would succeed in modern day would need to compare how the material conditions of now differ from then. For instance, our economy has an overproduction problem, which is far from the reality faced in 1917.

I've attached a book that analyses why the USSR fell, and how better/worse they were than the Western countries. Despite its bias, it should show that the Cold War was much less black and white than is it's made out to be.


stopped reading there

gee i dunno



debatable. didn't marx and engels use them rather interchangeably?

I said there were dozens of models, but only two were implemented in on a large scale for a significant amount of time. The others, if they ever ever implemented at all, were typically only done on a small scale or lasted just a few years before being destroyed by outside forces.

The two models that did see real implementation were Marxism-Leninism and Market Socialism. The former was the model used by the USSR and basically every other socialist country. It's centralized and relatively authoritarian by its very nature.

Market socialism was basically only implemented in Yugoslavia (which caused it to be so successful it was considered an economic miracle country). It was less authoritarian and had far stronger democratic elements, although the Yugoslav government was known to occasionally crack down on dissent, although not always, and not nearly as severely as ML countries. However unlike ML there is nothing about it that really lends itself to authoritarianism, that's just how it turned out in Yugoslavia.

Other socialist models like syndicalism, soviet socialism (aka council socialism) and communalism never saw use that was widespread or long lived enough to determine how they would have worked out.

However notable examples of experiments with these models include Revolutionary Catelonia, the early USSR, and modern Rojava.


you sure? I always it was lenin that came up with the idea of "socialism" then "communism" to justify his little vanguard


to expand on my point I found this


Communism is a stateless, classless, moneyless society. Socialism is the worker and democratic control of the means of production (some more hardcore socialists include other criteria but this is the most basic definition that all socialists would agree on). Socialism is an intermediary step necessary for the creation of a communist society. As a result most communists want to create socialism so they can eventually create communism. So the terms socialist and communist can be used interchangeably if you are talking about the people that support these ideologies, however the distinction between the two types of society is extremely important to understand leftist thought.


Anarcho-communism is. The whole point of AnCom is to skip socialism and go straight to communism.

Whoever said redflag posters where the most retarded people on this board was spot on.

Aside from memes like neofeudalism all anarchist society's would be indistinguishable from a "communist" one. The end goal is the same.

Anarchism is a society which doesn't have central government, nor hierarchies.
So called communists countries never reached communism and get stuck on the "proletariat dictatorship" by spending a shit ton of resources on the army "because we must protect the revolution from imperialism comrade".
There's a reason why Bakunin disliked Marx.

How am I not wrong? The main difference between Anarchism and Marxism is that Anarchists reject the need for the worker's state and the intermediary period of socialism before implementing communism.

I know what anarchism is. None of the socialist projects of the 20th century claimed to achieve communism. It's a difference of praxis not goals.

If communism was disproven by the USSR then capitalism is being disproven as we speak.

The USSR was communism that didn't disband the state when it was no longer needed, and people with authority decided that the working class didn't know what was best for them.

In short, another type of ruling class.

True communism has no centralized government giving orders to its citizens. It's basically peaceful anarchy.

However, with the abolishment of capitalism and the market, people are going to want resources. Without transactional bartering, there will be no system of bribery, so your stereotypical roving bands of mercenary war packs won't happen. Instead, people will work within their communities, contributing to the sustenance of everyone.

It's really going to be the same as in capitalism, but better - for example, the farmers and other food producers will still work with the grocery stores that everyone gets their food at. But in capitalism, you only get what you can pay for, and often you have to do without because it's too expensive. In communism, you're part of the community, your actions profited everyone you know directly instead of generating revenue that went to someone else far away and then fractionally trickled down, so because you're always such a big help to everyone, you're welcome to whatever you'd like to eat.

Now, there are a ton of details into the workings of communism, so my best answer is to stay here and soak up everything you can. It will all make sense, and if you really are a leftist that wants to help out the little guy, as most democrats say, you will come to love communism.

It's not evil, it just hasn't been allowed to flourish. All attempts have been stunted by fascism, bureacracy and statism, which are the complete antithesis to communism.

A great example of communism is GNU/Linux - it's free, meaning it costs no money, and it's Free, meaning it was not designed by a company for profit but rather by the community for the benefit of everyone who uses it, and everyone can use it how they like. It also has great protection against bugs, viruses and hackers because the community that uses it has full control over the source code. Should someone try to infect it or harm it, the community just undoes the damage.

Wikipedia to some extent is the same, if you're not into technology.

But yeah, stick around and soak up some info. I too was afraid of the Red Scare when I first came to Holla Forums, but I understood how silly that was after I learned what communism really is.

The USSR didn't uphold the State past the point it was needed, they just structured it in such a way that the bureaucrats ruled despotically.

when will this meme end

Not OP, but also relatively new. Is it ok if I support demsoc/socdem or something like that instead of full communism?

Social democracy is just capitalism with a new coat of paint.

Democratic socialism is communism.

But isn't socdem what they have in the Nordic nations? And aren't they doing really well?

Nordic model's success is due to a lot of different factors - geography, availability of resources, strong unionization etc. Doesn't change the fact they're capitalist, and ultimately the exploiters of the working class.

Marxism called them both communism or socialism. He had a lower and upper stage, but they would both share the same integral features, mainly the abolition of private property, commodity production and markets. "Lower and upper" seems more appropriate than "socialism and communism", imo.

"Communism doesn't works, as explained by USSR (actually Americans)
Revolution and civil war happens in backwards agricultural country.
America: Well, as you see, communism obviously doesn't works, because look at this mess they have in Russia. It is so shit compared to us.

Communists start to industrialize and modernize the country.
America: Well, as you see, they are far behind us. Communism doesn't works.

WW2 happens, USSR is restoring their war-torn country, while America invests their war profits into gaining influence over other countries and use them as markets for their goods.
America: Well, you see those commies still lagging far behind us? Communism doesn't works. Also let's antagonize them for no reason, to further prove that communism doesn't works.

Bald retard gains power in USSR, ruins everything with his inane reforms.

Another bald retard tries to introduce free market, but crashes whole country in the process.

"Shock therapy" and free market ruins Russian economy, then it recovers somewhat due to oil prices skyrocketing, then it plummets again. Russia loses 8 millions of population in process.
America: W-well, it is not a real free market! It is crony capitalism! I blame USSR for that! Anyway, look at Cuba, they are so poor after they lost their main ally and we slapped them with embargoes! Communism still doesn't works!

No, it was a failure because it was an authoritarian shit hole. It's only venerated by those who never lived under it, or prefer it to neoliberalism.

demonstrably false

Dude, I'm Russian. I can tell you for sure that many people who lived in USSR are either outright nostalgic for it, or admit that it was flawed, but salvageable, and that dissolution was pointless.

As an anarchist I loathe the USSR. I do have to admit though that they did do a good job of modernizing Russia very quickly for what its worth.

I don't know, what was life like before the revolution?

It was a pre industrial shit hole who before the revolution was ruled by an incompetent tsar who led the country into WWI leading to immense causalities

90% of population of Russian Empire were illiterate peasants. Russian Empire lived off the grain export despite having the lowest yield per hectare in Europe. Take a guess.



Is capitalism disproved by the 1930's depression?

You'll find the answer to that question is very similar IE. Many will claim "It's just capitalism misapplied". Why don't you give this benefit of the doubt to us?

You'll find that there are very few people here who support the USSR.

"It couldn't compete" because by its nature capitalism is great at competition. You've taken the basis for capitalism and used it as application to see whether communism is better. Of course it's not going to be better by those standards.

Capitalism is more competitive BECAUSE it is more unethical, IE it puts its interest into generating more capital, and not the interests of the workers. Communism is the rejection of this. So of course communism will be outcompeted by capitalism if they are allowed to co-exist.

I do not condone the destruction of human rights. "Elections" can be, and I would argue democracy must be an element of communism for it to work. Same for free media, so long as its not capitalistic and therefore exploitative.

Impossiblists are very very bad Marxists.

Nah. That's usual bullshit to confuse dumb proles.

It is true that Marx used words interchangeably.

But the one who "came up with idea" was also Marx (there are several places he mentions it, but in Critique of Gotha Programme he elaborates on it). I.e. Marx explicitly differentiated "first phase of Communism" from real Communism.

Lenin simply called this first phase a "Socialist state" (as in "state that follows Socialist ideas"). The name stuck.

He literally did, please read Marx before commenting on him.

He's bullshitting you, Lenin did call "lower-phase communism" socialism, but it was only Stalin that would make definition completely different from Marx's own. Lenin had the decency to call his system "state capitalism", because it still maintained the value-form.


So did Marx.

You can choose between Anarchist, Federalist Syndicalist and many many more

It very much could compete with Capitalism. Indeed it helped Capitalism fight fascism and was the second largest power on earth. Unsurprising that the traditional intrenched bourgeois class controlling the entire world at that point came out on top.

and I just want focus

Do not believe for 1 second that the Capitalist hegemony has not utterly destroyed human rights to stay in power.

Look at persecution the black panthers and nation of Islam. Look at the murders of Malcolm X and MLK.

Look at Reagan's death squads in Nicaragua, look at the US disappearances under Pinochet. These acts are central to the expansion of worldwide capitalist influence.

So too the creation of the Mujahadeen in Afghanistan which would lead to the creation of the Taliban, Al Quaeda and eventually ISIS was originally an anti soviet US backed ploy.

In fact just pick almost any Latin American country and have a little peak into its post WW2/'cold' was history I guarantee you come out an anti capitalist.

Watch the documentary 'The Act of Killing' and know that the Pancasilla youth were US backed.

Seriously, just become acquainted with US foriegn policy. You will see that communism did not fail in the least due to internal problems, it failed mostly due to imperialist aggression by the united states and its allies, which resulted in the deaths of millions of innocents and represented and utter contempt not just for democracy, but for the will and living conditions of all people everywhere.

> What we have to deal with here is a communist society, not as it has developed on its own foundations, but, on the contrary, just as it emerges from capitalist society; which is thus in every respect, economically, morally, and intellectually, still stamped with the birthmarks of the old society from whose womb it emerges. …
> Hence, equal right here is still in principle – bourgeois right, although principle and practice are no longer at loggerheads, while the exchange of equivalents in commodity exchange exists only on the average and not in the individual case.
> But these defects are inevitable in the first phase of communist society as it is when it has just emerged after prolonged birth pangs from capitalist society. Right can never be higher than the economic structure of society and its cultural development conditioned thereby.
> In a higher phase of communist society, after the enslaving subordination of the individual to the division of labor, and therewith also the antithesis between mental and physical labor, has vanished; after labor has become not only a means of life but life's prime want; after the productive forces have also increased with the all-around development of the individual, and all the springs of co-operative wealth flow more abundantly – only then then can the narrow horizon of bourgeois right be crossed in its entirety and society inscribe on its banners: From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs!

Read Marx, ffs.

You write a newspaper sure, how would you print and distribute it?

How can your idea compete with the entrenched systems of the Liberal press?

Why will they not just shout down, mock and destroy your paper?

Their papers sit on the Sunday table of every middle class home, if they say your paper is a disgusting and possibly dangerous, to most of the general population, it is.

And that's why this board is a joke. Instead of trying to de-Nazify Holla Forums by showing them how uncucked and unpozzed was Soviet Union, you just spout "IT FAILED BUT ITS OKAY WE HATE IT ANYWAY".

It literally did fail tho.

But you'll get banned if you try to argue coherently.

Yeah, when it tried to become capitalist
To be fair, Perestroika was a good idea, it just was executed extremely shoddily. Not to mention that it should've been done in 1953, not 1985. If only Kruschev didn't kill Beria…


i.e communism, the abolishment of the value-form, which most certainly didn't happen in the corporatist USSR.

>Between capitalist and communist society there lies the period of the revolutionary transformation of the one into the other. Corresponding to this is also a political transition period in which the state can be nothing but the revolutionary dictatorship of the proletariat.
You have to be completely fucking retarded if you're not clearly seeing that he's talking about revolution here, not in the fancy usage of buzzwords that mark ML rhetoric, but as the actual revolution itself. There is no mode of production between capitalism and communism, but a mere process of seizing the means of production. This argument is tied up in his critique of the Lassallean "free state", an idea Marx completely rejects.

Face it Stalinfag, you're not a Marxist, you're a Lassallean.

Agree, it failed in the 1920s.


Well they never stopped producing for exchange, so yes?

Quote the whole wall of text then and show what exactly contradicts what.

Prove this.

Which is a process, not a single event.

Look at my fucking quotes you little tard, that's all the proof you should need.

Or maybe you should actually get going on your Marx reading? Grab some hot cocoa and bunker up with Grundrisse while it's winter outside?

In MLism yes, because you couldn't fucking manage one properly.

Your argumentation only makes sense if you force your own odd definitions backwards. Akin to the theory of "dialectical materialism" which is never once mentioned but rather "discovered" within his work.

It's a pathetic attempt to twist very clear wording in a theological manner to fit your agenda.

As already mentioned, it's thus no contradiction in the text, but rather your interpretation of said text being blown apart by the rest of the document.

It succeeded in many respects, the removal of monarchy, industrialisation (from being uneducated peasants mostly to space in like 50 years), literacy, health but failed in its ultimate aim: a stateless,classless society.

Why did it fail to achieve this goal in your view?

Not that other user, but wouldn't switzerland come closest to anarchism? As in the central government having relatively little power while the major issues are decided through direct democracy. Also Switzerland has everything against it, shit geography, few resources, landlocked. It seems pretty naif to just shrug of the nordic model's success because of external factors.

When will this meme die? Lenin would be the last to claim that they were building anything but socialism and that, economically, it was anything but socialist.
>What is state capitalism under Soviet power? To achieve state capitalism at the present time means putting into effect the accounting and control that the capitalist classes carried out. We see a sample of state capitalism in Germany. We know that Germany has proved superior to us. But if you reflect even slightly on what it would mean if the foundations of such state capitalism were established in Russia, Soviet Russia, everyone who is not out of his senses and has not stuffed his head with fragments of book learning, would have to say that state capitalism would be our salvation.

He considered the principal enemy of the revolution not state capitalism – which is not a reference to a mode of production – but the petty bourgeois elements who stymied the attempts of the socialist government to progress economically. Lenin emphasized that theirs was a transitional economy, neither fully socialist or fully capitalist – but in any case, critically underdeveloped and thus frustratingly backward.

Production for exchange is older than capitalism – it's a feature of any society with an advanced division of labor. No, the USSR didn't abolish the value-form. But that's no great failure when it effectively means abolishing alienated labor itself, which is quite a lofty goal – one Lenin necessarily relegated to communism. Like Zizek says, however, the lower stage of communism is all we're likely to get.

Empty wording to reassure the people, there is no room for that kind of nonsense within Marx theory. I suggest you read some of it.

But unlike capitalism, like the USSR, it's not the dominant mode of production.

Which means it was capitalist, it's not more complicated than that.

The debate ends here.

That's a roundabout way of acknowledging you had no idea what you were talking about. And I've followed your line of argumentation, so I know not to waste my time arguing that the USSR was more complicated than "state capitalism". You're an equal zealot to any ML.