Victims of Communism

A place to bring a contemplative / Dharmic perspective and opinions to current events and politics.
Locked
User avatar
Will
Posts: 1016
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 11:26 pm
Location: So Cal

Victims of Communism

Post by Will » Sun Jun 19, 2016 2:07 pm

Just a reminder that not only Eastern Europe was under the boot, but much of Asia was, and still is.

http://victimsofcommunism.org
Wholesome virtuous behavior progressively leads to the foremost. -- AN 10.1

User avatar
dhammacoustic
Posts: 858
Joined: Thu Jan 30, 2014 4:30 am
Location: Dhammaville

Re: Victims of Communism

Post by dhammacoustic » Sun Jun 19, 2016 11:33 pm

The Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation has established a long-term action plan designed to memorialize, educate and document the grim legacy of communism around the world.
Oh, okay Image
Uppādā vā tathagātanaṃ anuppādā vā tathagātanaṃ, ṭhitāva sā dhātu dhammaṭṭhitatā dhammaniyāmatā idappaccayatā. Taṃ tathagāto abhisam­buj­jhati abhisameti. Abhisam­bujjhitvā abhisametvā ācikkhati deseti paññāpeti paṭṭhapeti vivarati vibhajati uttānīkaroti. ‘Passathā’ti cāha; ‘avijjāpaccayā, bhikkhave, saṅkhārā’. Iti kho, bhikkhave, yā tatra tathatā avitathatā anaññathatā idappaccayatā-ayaṃ vuccati, bhikkhave, paṭiccasamup­pādo.
:heart: namō tassa bhagavatō, arahatō, sammā sambuddhassā

chownah
Posts: 7415
Joined: Wed Aug 12, 2009 2:19 pm

Re: Victims of Communism

Post by chownah » Mon Jun 20, 2016 4:31 am

Don't be a victim....don't be anything at all.
chownah

User avatar
Dhamma_Basti
Posts: 116
Joined: Sat Feb 23, 2013 9:53 am

Re: Victims of Communism

Post by Dhamma_Basti » Mon Jun 20, 2016 5:54 am

I feel Mccarthy around the corner. ^^
To be honest I am quite glad that the days of the great communist empires have gone. China is in a transient state and the Soviet Union is history, But I do have some russian friends and some of them are hardcore communists till now, even stating that Gorbachev was the greatest criminal of the younger russian history. I personally do not agree, as I am quite glad that Germany was reunited and that we finally have a longer period of peace and stability in Europe. But that too is shaking at the moment and I hope that people do not turn stupid again.
Just to remind us: Scorpions - Wind of Change :)
My blog on buddhism, languages and programming.

User avatar
Ben
Posts: 18442
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2008 12:49 am
Location: kanamaluka

Re: Victims of Communism

Post by Ben » Mon Jun 20, 2016 6:32 am

And neoliberal capitalism doesn't have blood on its hands?
I think not.
“No lists of things to be done. The day providential to itself. The hour. There is no later. This is later. All things of grace and beauty such that one holds them to one's heart have a common provenance in pain. Their birth in grief and ashes.”
- Cormac McCarthy, The Road

Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.
- Sutta Nipata 3.725

Compassionate Hands Foundation (Buddhist aid in Myanmar) • Buddhist Global ReliefUNHCR

e: ben.dhammawheel@gmail.com..

User avatar
Lazy_eye
Posts: 996
Joined: Fri Jan 23, 2009 3:23 pm
Location: Laurel, MD
Contact:

Re: Victims of Communism

Post by Lazy_eye » Mon Jun 20, 2016 2:53 pm

Ben wrote:And neoliberal capitalism doesn't have blood on its hands?
I think not.
Of course it does. All the major political systems and ideologies do. But that doesn't mean we can't make meaningful distinctions among them.

For instance, I hope you would agree that a liberal society is preferable to a fascist one, even though liberalism and fascism both have "blood on their hands" to various degrees. We can still make a distinction because their are additional criteria that come into the discussion -- for instance, degree of state coercion, presence/absence of civil liberties, tolerance/intolerance of cultural heterogeneity, and so on.

Likewise, to compare the West and the Soviet bloc we'd need to agree on some criteria for comparison.
Last edited by Lazy_eye on Mon Jun 20, 2016 3:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Zom
Posts: 2101
Joined: Fri May 08, 2009 6:38 pm
Location: Russia, Saint-Petersburg
Contact:

Re: Victims of Communism

Post by Zom » Mon Jun 20, 2016 3:30 pm

The problem is not in the political system, but in the leader(s). Please remember that the happiest times for humanity (according to the Buddha) happen during the reign of the universal monarch (not during democracy, communism, fascism, whatever).

User avatar
Lazy_eye
Posts: 996
Joined: Fri Jan 23, 2009 3:23 pm
Location: Laurel, MD
Contact:

Re: Victims of Communism

Post by Lazy_eye » Mon Jun 20, 2016 3:42 pm

Zom wrote:The problem is not in the political system, but in the leader(s). Please remember that the happiest times for humanity (according to the Buddha) happen during the reign of the universal monarch (not during democracy, communism, fascism, whatever).
Wouldn't that be a type of political system too, called universal monarchy?

A universal monarch would be impossible within the contexts of either democratic socialism or liberalism, for instance, since the tenets of these systems are explicitly opposed to concentrating power in this way.

Cakkavattinism seems to mean a kind of benevolent dictatorship.

User avatar
Modus.Ponens
Posts: 2766
Joined: Sat Jan 03, 2009 2:38 am
Location: Gallifrey

Re: Victims of Communism

Post by Modus.Ponens » Mon Jun 20, 2016 7:45 pm

Hello.

Lazy Eye gave an excelent reply. I wish I had your diplomatic skills.

The USSR killed between 5 and 6 Million Ukrainians in the Holodomor. It had forced labor camps that enslaved something like 25 Million people. The critics would be killed. The inconvenient would be enslaved. They did experiments in humans like the nazis did.

In China there was the genocide of Tibetans. 1 Million. The Great Leap Forward agrary revolution claimed the lives of 18 Million people. 18 Million.

The Khmer Rouge killed between 20% and 25% of its own population.

The horrors were/are part of Angola, Jugoslavia, Cuba, North Korea, etc.

Two conclusions can be drawed from this, one clear, the other not so clear.

(1) The communist regimes were as destructive, genocidal and psychopatic as the fascist regimes. (2) Western communists who have the decency of not being in favour of these genocidal regimes say that the problem was that it wasn't correctly implemented by honest people. But the real problem is the following: to install a communist regime, there cannot be private property and no private sector. But there will always be people who disagree with this. So ultimately, if a communist regime is to be installed the dissidents have to be killed. And any person willing to kill millions of people who disagree with collective property has to be a monster. This is the real reason there never was a humane communist regime and never will be.

The Western democracies are far from perfect, but in the 20th century we were't genociding millions and millions of our own people. Especially after WWII. We had the civil rights movement, the emancipation of women and the sexual revolution. So our democracies cannot be comparable to communist regimes. That would be moral blindness.

And finally, our crimes cannot be understood in isolation from the psychopatic regimes we were fighting. Just like our bombing of Dresden cannot be criticised fairly without having into account that our enemies were the nazis. But the stakes in the Cold War were even higher: the world was on the brink of anihilation.

The world is imperfect and politics is dirty. But if you want to know on what side you really are, ask yourself this: would you rather live in the US or in the USSR?

Anjali
"He turns his mind away from those phenomena and, having done so, inclines his mind to the property of deathlessness: 'This is peace, this is exquisite — the resolution of all fabrications; the relinquishment of all acquisitions; the ending of craving; dispassion; cessation; Unbinding.' " - Jhana Sutta

User avatar
DNS
Site Admin
Posts: 11704
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 4:15 am
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada, Estados Unidos de América
Contact:

Re: Victims of Communism

Post by DNS » Mon Jun 20, 2016 11:35 pm

Modus.Ponens wrote: The world is imperfect and politics is dirty. But if you want to know on what side you really are, ask yourself this: would you rather live in the US or in the USSR?
My wife lived in both the USSR and the US. She said the U.S. is better. :tongue:

My wife had the unique opportunity of living under communism in 2 different continents (Africa & Europe). The Red reign of terror in Ethiopia (1977-1980) killed nearly 500,000 murdering any and all opposition to communism. Dead bodies were left on the streets to scare the rest of the populace. It led to the famine of 1983-1985 which killed another 500,000 for a total of one million.

Then she went to the USSR to attend uni/medical school. Food and other resources were scarce and she left for the U.S. When she came to the U.S. she had no money and no degree, waited tables for a living and said that was better than living in a communist nation.

I know some of you might say that isn't real communism; but then the same could be said about today's cronyism capitalism, giving no bid contracts to certain companies, bail outs of Wall Street, etc., which is not real Adam Smith capitalism either. The best system seems to be some sort of mixed economy (centrist economics) without the corruption and cronyism.

User avatar
retrofuturist
Site Admin
Posts: 20037
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 9:52 pm
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Contact:

Re: Victims of Communism

Post by retrofuturist » Tue Jun 21, 2016 12:00 am

Greetings Lazy Eye,
Lazy_eye wrote:For instance, I hope you would agree that a liberal society is preferable to a fascist one...
Well I would... and for me, that distinction cuts to the heart of the matter.

Whether extreme left-wing or extreme right-wing, the root problem that leads to corruption, cronyism, moral bankruptcy, atrocities and manipulation of the populace is unfettered power in the form of authoritarianism and fascism.

First authoritarian regimes control your actions, then they control your speech, and then they seek to control and manipulate your thoughts... demonstrating a complete disregard for personal and spiritual autonomy that should be abhorrent to us as Buddhists with an understanding that actions, speech and thoughts are the roots of action (kamma).

Image

Metta,
Paul. :)
Last edited by retrofuturist on Tue Jun 21, 2016 4:43 am, edited 3 times in total.
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"One discerns wrong view as wrong view, and right view as right view. This is one's right view." (MN 117)

User avatar
Will
Posts: 1016
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 11:26 pm
Location: So Cal

Re: Victims of Communism

Post by Will » Tue Jun 21, 2016 12:21 am

One must suppose that any well-educated posters here, who can find excuses for the horrors of Communism have all read this snappy little tome?

http://www.hup.harvard.edu/catalog.php? ... 80674076082
Wholesome virtuous behavior progressively leads to the foremost. -- AN 10.1

User avatar
Modus.Ponens
Posts: 2766
Joined: Sat Jan 03, 2009 2:38 am
Location: Gallifrey

Re: Victims of Communism

Post by Modus.Ponens » Tue Jun 21, 2016 12:39 am

David N. Snyder wrote:
Modus.Ponens wrote: The world is imperfect and politics is dirty. But if you want to know on what side you really are, ask yourself this: would you rather live in the US or in the USSR?
My wife lived in both the USSR and the US. She said the U.S. is better. :tongue:

My wife had the unique opportunity of living under communism in 2 different continents (Africa & Europe). The Red reign of terror in Ethiopia (1977-1980) killed nearly 500,000 murdering any and all opposition to communism. Dead bodies were left on the streets to scare the rest of the populace. It led to the famine of 1983-1985 which killed another 500,000 for a total of one million.

Then she went to the USSR to attend uni/medical school. Food and other resources were scarce and she left for the U.S. When she came to the U.S. she had no money and no degree, waited tables for a living and said that was better than living in a communist nation.

I know some of you might say that isn't real communism; but then the same could be said about today's cronyism capitalism, giving no bid contracts to certain companies, bail outs of Wall Street, etc., which is not real Adam Smith capitalism either. The best system seems to be some sort of mixed economy (centrist economics) without the corruption and cronyism.
Thank you for sharing that. It must have been terrible.

Some cliches are empty repetitions that started as wonderful events. The american dream is to me one such cliche. But the wonderful stories behind it are like those of your wife. It may not sound special to most of us, but I bet it is for her.

The point about bad communist regimes and crony capitalism is that to some point this is inevitable. Since ultimately dissidents must be killed in communist regimes, there will never be a communism that in reality is as good as it first sounds in your head. Crony capitalism is also innevitable to some degree. No nation is devoid of corruption. But we have ways of keeping it in ballance and we can change laws to do it better. Unfortunately that's the best we can do.

I'm off to practice contentment :P
"He turns his mind away from those phenomena and, having done so, inclines his mind to the property of deathlessness: 'This is peace, this is exquisite — the resolution of all fabrications; the relinquishment of all acquisitions; the ending of craving; dispassion; cessation; Unbinding.' " - Jhana Sutta

User avatar
Will
Posts: 1016
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 11:26 pm
Location: So Cal

Re: Victims of Communism

Post by Will » Tue Jun 21, 2016 1:16 am

Here is the Introduction to another book of personal stories From the Gulag to the Killing Fields. The notes are missing in this pdf, you will have to get the book. The Intro is titled "Distinctive Features of Repression in Communist States"

http://www.isi.org/books/content/384intro.pdf
Wholesome virtuous behavior progressively leads to the foremost. -- AN 10.1

chownah
Posts: 7415
Joined: Wed Aug 12, 2009 2:19 pm

Re: Victims of Communism

Post by chownah » Tue Jun 21, 2016 2:42 am

I think the problem is not so much with communism as it is with the way people try to implement communism. Peaceful communism is often calle 'communalism'....like what many european monks do or did.
chownah

Locked

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 14 guests