[Marxism] A Deck of Cards

Joonas Laine jjonas at nic.fi
Sat Dec 25 16:22:19 MST 2004

Hello, I'm in the process of trying to write a socialist version of
a Finnish story, 'A Deck of Cards', the original being religious
in content. I would be grateful if people on the list could provide
me with suggestions (I guess it's better to do it offlist if you have
only brief ones) for historical or general marxist factoids relating
to numbers 1-13. (See the story sketch below for the idea.)

Especially it would be useful if you can suggest ones for the numbers
which I haven't found anything good enough for, but I also take
suggestions for replacements if you think you have better ones, esp.
if you think I'm trying to mix two factoids that in reality wouldn't

Here is the sketch:


This is an old story. Once during The Great Patriotic war it
happened thus: a partisan unit had been on a long march, and
had just arrived in a small village. The next day there was
a party meeting in the biggest house of the village, and the
partisan commander ordered that all comrades take part.

When the chairperson of the local party branch started the
opening speech, those who had the Party Membership
Card, took it from their pockets. But one partisan didn't have
but a deck of cards, which he spread before himself on the bench.
The commander noticed the cards and said: Comrade. Put those
cards away.

After the party meeting the partisan was arrested and taken to
court-martial. The Judge asked: Comrade, give me a satisfactory
explanation for what you did, or I will punish you harder than
I have ever punished anyone.

Comrade Judge, the partisan said. I have been marching for almost
all of the week, and I am just a poor peasant, and I don't have
a Party Membership Card. But I hope you will understand my
sincere clarification.

Thus he began his tale.

You see, comrade Judge, when I see the ace, I remember there is only
One Party. When I see number two, I remember that it was two people
who laid the foundations of scientific socialism; they were Karl
Marx and Friedrich Engels. When I see number three, I remember
that marxism has three basic foundational parts; they are British
economics, French utopian socialism, and German philosophy.

When I see number four, I remember that the great leader of the
Russian people, Joseph Vissarionovich Stalin, was the fourth child
of his family, all his siblings having died prior to his birth.

When I see number five, I think of the first five year
plan in the Soviet Union.

When I see number six, I remember that after the revolution it was
only for six years that comrade Lenin had the chance to guide us
in the construction of Socialist Russia, and when I see number
seven, I think of the seven comrades who were members of the
Russian Communist Party's first ever politbureau in 1917. They
were: Lenin, Stalin, Trotsky, Zinoviev, Kamenev, Sokolnikov,
and Bubnov.

[I guess one wouldn't have Trotsky's name mentioned here..?]

When I see number eight

When I see number nine

When I see number ten, I remember the ten April Theses that
Lenin presented in the Tauride Palace after having returned
from Switzerland after the February Revolution.

When I see the King, I remember that there is only one leader,
comrade general secretary Stalin, and when I see the Queen, I
remember Rosa Luxemburg, whom the treacherous revisionist
social democrats murdered in 1918.

[Would you have RL here..?]

The Jack is the German imperialist aggressor.

When I count all the numbers of the deck together, I get
364 - that is only one less than the number of days in a
year. There is 52 cards altogether - as many as there is
weeks in a year. There is four suits - as many as there
is weeks in a month. All court cards together are twelve
- as many as there is months in a year. Each suit has
thirteen cards - as many as there is weeks in a quarter
of a year.

Comrade Judge. As you can see, for me a deck of cards is
a history book, the ABC of communism, and a calendar.

Dear reader. This story is true.

jjonas @ nic.fi

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