Scott at rednet.org
Thu Apr 13 21:30:27 MDT 1995
(Sorry for getting the name wrong.
As to your CPUSA and Loser diatribe let me only hope that it is cold in
Seattle this week, so your rightous wrath can serve to keep you warm. That's
about its only practical application.
>Sputnik and the military machine. Yes, they are impressive. Still, is
>this what communism is about? What I'd like to know is why the world
>wasn't buying Soviet cars, trucks, refrigerators, washing-machines,
>radios, TVs, computers, toasters, need I go on. The Soviet Union simply
>could not produce consumer goods cheap enough and of high-enough quality
>to compete on the world market. And please don't cry about capitalist
>boycotts because if the innovation, quality and price were their they
>would have beat down the doors of world trade. Don't blame capitalism for
>throwing curve-balls and sliders at you. It's a competitive game and on the
>consumer level, what the worker can buy, the Soviet Union failed.
>All the blame and excuses, won't change the facts. They lost. Wake up and
>deal with it, plan a new strategy, with new innovative ideas. Stop whining!
So in your onesided anti-Soviet world there was no international class
struggle. Every problem of the Soviet project was subjective? To fit your
theses you ignore the problems and wrong ideas I did raise about the Soviet
project. Not sweepiong and condemning enough. Not my job that's for you and
your self righteous wrath. Fine. So if market competition is the touchstone
then what have you got against capitalism?
>What decisions? What policies? I won't write a book here, but how about
>the collectivisation of agriculture (the "war against the Kulaks")
Yes and no - a little easy to condemn from afar in time and space. People
were starving and others were hoarding and using agriculture against the
>the absoption of the trade unions into the state structure,
There are certainly aspects of this that were a mistake, but what will you
do with the trade unions under socialism? Will you give them the right of
legislative initiative? A role in management? Will they have a role in
dertermining how profits are used? Will they have a role in planning? How
will you do it different?
>the banning of all opposition parties,
Did the invasion of imperialist armies to crush the revolution have any
bearing on this? I think so. Did the backwardness and underdevelopment and
history of Russia have anything to do with this? I think so. Does it excuse
it? Who cares? It is what happened.
>the purges and wanton murder of the 1930s,
Was there fierce class struggle going on in this period? I think so, having
to do with the rise of fascism etc. **I will not now nor have I ever
defended Stalin's crimes.** When the Nazi's invaded the SU the collaborators
came from somewhere - I do believe there were some real internal dangers and
enemies of socialism.
>the pact with Hitler, a betrayal beyond belief.
This is total nonsense. The SU worked like hell to get a defense pact with
the US, England and France. Imperialist policy at the time was to try and
force Hitler to invade the SU and hope they would fight it out and bleed
each other. The pact did give the SU time to build up its military
capabilities to resist the enivitable onslaught. BTW the SU prepared for the
war against fascism much earlier and with much greater forsight than did
their imperialist allies. But there I go again blaming imperialism,
especially US imperialism which produces such nice superior consumer goods!
>Just ask the
>German communists who Stalin dutifully handed back over to Hitler during
I will ask them if you can tell me who they are?
>Ther is quite a difference between a company or corporation carrying out its
>"command," its production plans within its sphere (even though that may
>be large) and the organization of an entire national economy through a
>centralized plan. Quite a difference. And the Soviet central planning
>system did not cut it.
Finally something we sort of agree on - though for a time I think it did work.
>but it does show that there are many lessons for Marxists to learn,
>so as to foster both material wealth and social welfare.
Something we can agree on completely!
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