Done That

“But it’s just a mask, just a test, just a vaccine, just two weeks, just six weeks, just 9 months.”

I already had these discussions back in the USSR.

“But it’s just a subbotnik.”

“But it’s just a May 1st demonstration. Just a trip to the kolhoz. It’s only two weeks, only four weeks, only six weeks.”

“But it’s just a signature. It’s just a meeting. It doesn’t mean anything. It’s not that hard. What’s the harm?”

“It’s just a blackout. It’s fun to go a bit without electricity. It’s great for family bonding.”

“So what there’s no running water? It’s just a week, a month, a summer. It’s fun! So many new experiences!”

I’ve already done this.

37 thoughts on “Done That”

  1. subbotnik – unpaid work on weekends??? If you tried to make South Africans do that there would be riots. Good thing Americans are totally different from South Africans.

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    1. Yes, it was completely unnecessary work, too. The point was to degrade abd humiliate people while making sure they didn’t spend too much time with their families. USSR hated family time.

      For instance, I almost never spend the vacation with both of my parents. Spouses weren’t allowed to vacation together. Unless they were well-connected, of course.

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      1. Apartheid relied almost entirely on families. People will do or put up with all kinds of stuff to support their families. One thing that eventually undermined the system was the huge families that black people had.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. It doesn’t seem right to me to compare late stage Soviet communism with this new kind of cancel culture medico-political wannabe dictatorship. For that analogy to hold, most or all of the really lively stubborn Americans with guns would have to have been eliminated already, and they’re not.

    To me it looks more like Argentina in the late 1990s, where something real happened (banking crisis) that was taken advantage of by crooked politicians/technocrats. Except that Americans aren’t Argentinians, because not only are they insanely autocratic, but they’re very well armed.

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    1. I’m not sure what people’s having guns changes if they meekly accept every dictate anyway.

      Out of all of us, I’m the one who lived in both societies, and I’m telling you that the similarities are eerie. I talked to a friend from Belarus, and that’s what she says, too. “This is like going back to the USSR.” My parents are saying the same. Everybody I know who’s from back there is noticing the similarities.

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      1. “I’m not sure what people’s having guns changes if they meekly accept every dictate anyway.”

        Guns mean that the power to choose is still predominantly in the hands of the public. The answer to your question is that to accept or not accept, meekly or not, is still a choice for them. As far as I know, people in the USSR were practically captives, in a way that (most) people in China practically are under the CCP.

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      2. I 100% agree with Clarissa. I never thought I will see what I experienced in a communist society again, but here we are.

        About 10 years ago one of my American acquaintances told me that he doesn’t understand how people in the USSR and the rest of the communist block ended up in a totalitarian society – if only they were smarter and rose up against the government right away when the system was being put in place! That conversation has been on my mind a lot this past year…

        What good are your rights if you don’t exercise them?

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Communist society? What communist society? No one here is living under communism. There is no one party system in place that stops people from assembling, meeting, or saying whatever they want. People aren’t being abducted, tortured, raped or killed because they said the wrong thing about the wrong politician.

        The worst thing that is really happening to anyone who says something that some politicians don’t like is that they might find being employed harder and might be deprived of luxury because they were so-called ‘cancelled’ – and since when did being deprived of luxury become equal to living in a communist society?

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        1. Nobody was being abducted, raped and killed in the USSR that I grew up in. That all ended with Stalin’s death.

          What we were afraid of in the USSR in the post-Stalin era wasn’t coming to physical harm or being sent to the Gulag. That didn’t exist any more. We were afraid precisely of being “cancelled.” Being shamed, humiliated, and thrown out of public life.

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          1. But did you have people like Charles Murray? Once you have achieved total pariah status you can basically say whatever you want because what more can anyone say about you?

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          2. I was “cancelled” a decade ago, have been targeted by the executive, administrative, and judicial branch of government, have been vilified by media, recovered, rebuilt, and then was “deplatformed”. People in politics make jokes about me being wrongly jailed, and snigger at the idea of prison beatings and prison rapes.

            I am so angry and annoyed at what has happened that I am deliberately staying away from everything so that the people in power, and their sycophants, get the one thing in this world that is worst for them – what they think they want.

            Anyway, if I might suggest, if you are unhappy about the direction that things are going in, then you ought to know two words – the first is ‘intrigue’, and the second is ‘movement’.

            The reason that the word ‘intrigue’ is important is because most people in this world think that political decisions are being made according to law, policy, some principle or other, some public outcome etc and that just isn’t how it is. At the moment, largely, political decisions are being made based on who is blackmailing who, who bribed who, or who knows what about who.

            Most people think that decisions are made from the top down within government or something, within some kind of monolithic hierarchical structure, in some kind of understandable way. Again, that is false. The way it is working is that a single individual within a trade union, political faction, large company etc is making a decision in some way for everyone within that faction based on some kind of personal motivation. In turn, the whole entity is moved, which in turn moves the whole government.

            In other words, the tail is wagging the dog, except that there is one really big dog (the government) that is made up of a thousand smaller dogs (trade unions, political factions, large companies) where they’re all connected to ten thousand tails, any of which can wag first a small dog, which then wags the government. Your chances of figuring it all out are approximately zero.

            In the USA and everywhere else, it feels like communism because it is arbitrary, unfair, unequal, extremely frustrating, and governed by intrigue (as Hunter Biden’s laptop clearly shows). But that doesn’t make it communism. Communism, really, is a false designation – a fake name for something else, which is a one party system that usually applies a system of authoritarian capitalism, which, in a different sense, may be called neofeudalism. But really, one party authoritarian capitalism is better imo.

            For that reason, it is wrong imo to say that people are living in the USA under communism, because it just isn’t true. It isn’t a one party system, and it isn’t authoritarian capitalism except I suppose in the sense that private entities like the Federal Reserve have special privileges that are backed by state violence.

            Anyway, as soon as you let go of the idea that the USA or any other Western nation is really run according to law/statute etc and accept that it is run according to various intrigues, it makes a lot more sense and lessens the frustration imo.

            The second word to know is the word ‘movement’. In the USA, there are 3 essential rights that come together as a check against tyranny. The first is to be armed, the second is to speak feely, and the third is to assemble. The last one is definitely the most important at the moment, because the first two are useless to an individual standing alone. Having a gun and saying what you want doesn’t mean anything in a system where the ones in charge will steamroll you because too many of them are on camera doing drugs or being pedophiles.

            I know with absolute certainty that people in so-called “think tanks” are extremely worried about large groupings of people forming movements, because while one person who is armed and saying whatever they like can be steamrolled by a government run by intrigues, a movement made up of many such individuals cannot. That is what all of this “cancel culture” and “deplatforming” stuff is about. It’s to stop the formation of movements that allow for a grouping of people large enough to overcome the relevant part of the system that is acting in a tyrannical way.

            So, if you or any of your friends are really concerned about so-called “communism” in America, my suggestion would be to find other people of your own kind and talk to them/connect with them in a meaningful way. Any commonality will do, even if it is simply that all of you would be Eastern Europeans concerned about communism.

            Btw only form a group of Eastern Europeans Against Communism if you want a lot of attention. Just…trust me on that one.

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            1. Perhaps we are less concerned about the actual communism than we are about a totalitarian society that shares attributes with communism. You do agree with us at least that part of the system is acting in a tyrannical way, that’s what we are going on about. The scary part is that there seems to be a large complacency and compliance about the way things are in a general population.

              Liked by 1 person

              1. @ random reader: There is nothing to be said against that. As should be clear in a later post to cliff arroyo, I think that the point of contention is now largely about the extent of actual authoritarianism in the USA versus perception of it.

                As for the general population, please, let’s not go there. I think that the motto of the past 2 generations is something like “If we can’t drink it, smoke it, or go to bed with it, we don’t want it!”.

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        2. “No one here is living under communism”

          I don’t think that’s the claim Clarissa is making… I’m pretty sure she doesn’t use the word communist to describe the mentality that meekly accepts totalitarian dictates out of fear, she’s pretty consistent in using ‘Soviet’ in that regard.
          What’s happening in the US is capitalist technocratic oligarchy imposing a Soviet style regime of conformity and compliance (and far too many in the US) are simply going along for the ride because they’re afraid of the social consequences.
          The trans-covid-blm axis is corporate totalitarianism just because it can’t be called communist doesn’t make it any better….

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          1. @ cliff arroyo: You’re right. In an earlier post, I used the term “late stage Soviet communism” to which Clarissa replied without making issue. As you said, she refers either to the USSR, or uses the word “Soviet”.

            Anyway, so that there is less repetition, I said: “It doesn’t seem right to me to compare late stage Soviet communism with this new kind of cancel culture medico-political wannabe dictatorship. For that analogy to hold, most or all of the really lively stubborn Americans with guns would have to have been eliminated already, and they’re not.

            To me it looks more like Argentina in the late 1990s, where something real happened (banking crisis) that was taken advantage of by crooked politicians/technocrats. Except that Americans aren’t Argentinians, because not only are they insanely autocratic, but they’re very well armed.”

            To which Clarissa replied: “I’m not sure what people’s having guns changes if they meekly accept every dictate anyway.

            Out of all of us, I’m the one who lived in both societies, and I’m telling you that the similarities are eerie. I talked to a friend from Belarus, and that’s what she says, too. “This is like going back to the USSR.” My parents are saying the same. Everybody I know who’s from back there is noticing the similarities.”

            Now, you have said: “What’s happening in the US is capitalist technocratic oligarchy imposing a Soviet style regime of conformity and compliance (and far too many in the US) are simply going along for the ride because they’re afraid of the social consequences.
            The trans-covid-blm axis is corporate totalitarianism just because it can’t be called communist doesn’t make it any better….”

            So all of us are saying something similar, except that I maintain that the fact that Americans have the choice to uphold their rights to be armed, to speak their minds, and to assemble is decisively different to what happened in the USSR.

            One of the reasons I am so adamant is that I have faced worse than what I have spoken of in the above post, while there is no bill of rights in this country. Legally speaking, I do not have the legal right to free speech and do not have the legal right to arm myself adequately.

            So for me to hear people in the US say that it is like the USSR over there, where there is a bill of rights ensuring that they can speak their minds and obtain very good weaponry, while I myself am forced to self censor so as to avoid legal suppression orders and where weapons are quite restricted, makes me think “No, it’s like the USSR here not there thankyou – and I think that my experience gives me the right to say so strongly!”

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            1. “Legally speaking, I do not have the legal right to free speech”

              Nonsense. You’ve been reading too many secondary school level textbooks written by half-educated teachers.

              Britons practically invented the concept of free speech and have long enjoyed these rights under traditional common law.

              Such “rights” are never absolute anytime or anywhere and always a politically negotiated matter between the powerful, less powerful and the powerless within society. Written constitutions are no guarantee of “legal rights.”

              Article 50 of Stalin’s 1936 constitution made extensive guarantees of freedom of speech to Soviet citizens and Article 35 of the current Chinese constitution proclaims that “citizens of the People’s Republic of China enjoy freedom of speech, of the press, of assembly, of association, of procession, and of demonstration.” During World War II the US Supreme Court upheld confining American citizens of Japanese ancestry in internment camps. And so on and so on…

              (And btw constitutional guarantees of the Second Amendment rights of Japanese-Americans didn’t save any of them from being interned.)

              Liked by 1 person

              1. Stalin’s constitution was actually great. It guaranteed tons of freedoms. As Soviet apparatchiks used to say (and today’s US leftists repeat after them), “you are absolutely free to speak but you are not free from the consequences of your speech.”

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              2. @ GSW: I did not read “too many secondary school level textbooks written by half-educated teachers”. I do not live in Britain. Your concept of “rights” are not negotiated between the powerful, less powerful, and powerless within society, since the decision maker is often held hostage and compelled to act due to some past indiscretion. In fact, in machine politics, they often only achieve position due to some past indiscretion, and become hostages willingly. Written constitutions are not a guarantee, but are useful tools at least some of the time.

                My knowledge is not second hand. At high levels, things like law and principle lose relevance. Only power matters.

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              3. @ Clarissa: in my jurisdiction, you are not free to speak. Suppression orders are applied and clearly state that the people subject to them are not free to speak at all and will suffer severe penalty should they do so.

                Further, the practice is abusive, because suppression orders may be applied to an individual regarding public information. So, were an order applied to you about, say, a page in a newspaper, then both you and I could look at a copy of the page on the internet in an archive. I would be able to talk about it to my hearts content, but should you utter or write a word about it, then you would be in violation of the order and subject to (often severe) penalty.

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              4. “I do not live in Britain.”

                Australia also does not have a Bill of Rights in their constitution either. But that does not mean that Australians don’t enjoy legal freedoms. Same difference with the British – traditional common law rights create the space necessary for individuals to defend their rights in relation to the state.

                Lawyers much prefer constitutionalized bills of rights claiming they are far superior to common law rights. Half-educated school textbook writers along with gullible journalists (who wish they had gone to law school) reflexively repeat this claim as if it was true. But it’s a cynical power grab: the legal classes are so full of themselves that they believe that they should get to decide by themselves the extent of everyone else’s “legal rights” without any necessary reference to the views of the wider public.

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              5. @ GSW: It would be best if you saved the speeches for students who don’t know about the world. Where I live, I know which judges are pedophiles, which lawyers drug dealers go to so as to pass a bribe to a judge, which politicians are in thrall to foreign agents, which public servants are also part of a biker gang, and which average looking person at some point had a sideline as a standover man.

                If you want a bit of hard earned knowledge about law, here it is – at the top, where business, politics, and law blur together, there is no law. It’s solid criminality.

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              6. “It would be best if you saved the speeches for students who don’t know about the world.”

                Are you five years old? Last week you were telling us you were an expert on medicine, this week the law. To quote Groucho Marx, “Why don’t you bore a hole in yourself and let the sap run out?”

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              7. @ GSW: “Are you five years old? Last week you were telling us you were an expert on medicine, this week the law. To quote Groucho Marx, “Why don’t you bore a hole in yourself and let the sap run out?”

                GSW, at no time did I claim to be an “expert on medicine”. Nor am I claiming to be an expert on law.

                You can try to prove me wrong by posting a link or a screenshot of wherever it is you think that I said these things.

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              8. Sure, the British had free speech. But you’d better speak with the right accent if you want people to take you seriously.

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              9. “But you’d better speak with the right accent if you want people to take you seriously.”

                Not just the Brits. It’s a rare country where this isn’t a fact of life.

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    2. @George : just out of curiosity, are you also one of those folks who argues against the 2nd Amendment, because “What good are a few shotguns and pistols against military tanks, bombs, and RPGs?” i.e. we already forbid citizens to own most military-grade weaponry, so the idea that an armed populace is a check against tyranny is silly…

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  3. Semi OT: Eric Weinstein (not everybody’s cup of tea but a massive genius) kind of hints that maybe the Emperor isn’t beautifully dressed after all:

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    1. One of the comments actually echoes a thought or two I’ve been having lately about the theatrical “at least vaccines!” narrative – rhymes with gazebo….
      It’s served it’s primary purpose and now it’s time to drag it off the stage…

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      1. The point of the vaccine narrative is precisely to serve as a placebo. It gives people hope that lockdowns won’t be eternal. For now, they still need that hope to comply. By next Fall it will be clear that this “vaccine” does absolutely nothing to eliminate all COVID mortality (which is now the declared goal.) By then, everybody will be ready to accept the permanent state of emergency.

        This is the only reason why the whole vaccine charade exists. I’m bored even to think about it. Of course, by the time it becomes clear that it’s not a real vaccine, we will discover that the dumbfucks who took it are going to suffer a lifetime of damage to their immune systems that will necessitate us to lock down harder.

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