Wednesday, 17 July 2013

A hundred million dead - for *this*?

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General and private, peasant and militiaman, still met as equals; everyone drew the same pay, wore the same clothes, ate the same food, and called everyone else ‘thou’ and ‘comrade’; there was no boss-class, no menial-class, no beggars, no prostitutes, no lawyers, no priests, no boot-licking, no cap-touching. I was breathing the air of equality, and I was simple enough to imagine that it existed all over Spain. I did not realize that more or less by chance I was isolated among the most revolutionary section of the Spanish working class.

Homage to Catalonia - by George Orwell.

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I remember reading this passage about the brief days of socialist utopia during the Spanish Civil war, and similar eulogistic passages in Noam Chomsky, and thinking - well, yes, that would no doubt be nice, so far as it goes - but what a paltry thing!

Among the really pure and rigorous Leftists, this is just about the only example of an actually achieved communist utopia.

Of course it did not last, and it seems obvious to me now that it could not last, was a brief transition - but leave that aside: my point is that it is this vision which motivates the Left.

What a paltry thing!

What kind of a person could think this worth a revolution?

I suppose the answer is some kind of person who is eaten-up by an extraordinarily potent mixture of resentment and shame - resentment at those above, shame with respect to those below; such that the only solution is that kind of wallowing in equal comradeship, and to be able to live in this way becomes more important than anything else - more important than life itself, and the hope of getting to this kind of society is what justifies open-ended tyranny, terror, manipulation, propaganda, and destruction, destruction, destruction...

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