During the Cold War, we were taught that Communism and Capitalism were separate, but equal, socio-economic systems and that each system had its good points, and its bad points. Capitalism produced more consumer goods[i], but communism produced a better health care system[ii] and a greater love of country[iii].
Baloney. The real difference between communists and capitalists was that communists lied and capitalists, for the most part, told the truth. Only by their continual lying, could communists keep afloat the idea that their system in any way as successful as capitalism.
The best examples of communist lies were the “news reports” about former KGB chief Yuri Andropov, just before he became General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union in 1982. Here are a few things that the Pravda[iv] reported (and the western press duly reported without any semblance of fact checking) about old Yuri:
- Yuri was a liberal, not a conservative[v];
- Yuri was a quiet person, who liked to relax at night by listening American Jazz and drinking western scotch (Scotch is, by definition, western; it must be distilled in Scotland);
- Yuri favored arms control;
- Yuri was fluent in French and spoke a little German;
- Yuri thought there were only “a few shortcomings” in the KGB (Oh really!)
All lies! In fact, Andropov was a card-carrying Stalinist. He was the Soviet ambassador to Hungary in 1956 and participated in (some say made) the decision to invade the country. The Soviet invasion resulted in the death of 2,500 Hungarians, the wounding of another 20,000, the imprisonment of 22,000 and the execution of 229, including the Hungarian leader Imre Nagy, who was promised safe conduct if he surrendered. After his surrender, he was arrested and executed, and Yuri Andropov became known as the “Butcher of Budapest.”
Liars, Liars, pants on fires!!!
P.S. I wonder if the new Russian government still lies???
[i] Production of consumer goods was a one-sided win for capitalism because communism produced no consumer goods, except for the Skoda (An awful Czechoslovakian automobile).
[ii] In fact, the health care system in communist countries sucked.
[iii] Hmmm. Then why did they ban emigration and erect a wall to keep their people in.
[iv] Pravda was formerly the official newspaper of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union.
[v] It is best to remember the words of Zbigniew Brzezenski, “The choice in the Soviet Union is not between …conservatives or liberals , but between different types of tough guys” and also of Alexander Ginzburg, “It is a sick joke if the west thinks Yuri Andropov is a liberal.”