Page 1 of 18
1
2
3
11
... LastLast
  1. #1

    Growing similarities between the USSR and USA (As told to me by 2 former Soviets)

    In my town there are 2 older gentleman who hail from the former Soviet Union. They came over in the 80s during Perestroika. Several times in the past I've heard them claim that the US was heading down the same road as the USSR. I struck it off as hyperbole but recently decided to ask how this could be so given the rights and freedoms we're guaranteed by our Constitution.

    Then I found out something I never knew. Before them, no one had told me and if anyone BUT a Soviet had said so I wouldn't have believed them.

    They both (independently) answered that the USSR had a Constitution and that Stalin's 1936 version of the Constitution of the USSR was actually more comprehensive and provided more rights than the US Constitution. It provided civil as well as economic rights. Warrants were required for searches, freedom of speech and of religion was guaranteed, freedom of assembly and universal suffrage was guaranteed from the very early days. They also had economic rights which included pensions, vacation, 7-hour (not a typo) work days, provided cross-racial rights 30+ years before the USA. New Zealand in 1941 is credited with the world's first near-universal health care, but in reality that had been provided for the Soviets since at LEAST 1936 (I haven't checked the first constitution yet). It all seemed pretty damn rosy, honestly.

    Here's the original russian text if anyone wants to verify my claims.

    They just didn't care. The Constitution was a show piece. Increasingly trampled and skirted by the government practically from Day 1. From here I will point out the unnerving analogues between the former USSR and the current USA. Please try and not dismiss what I say as hyperbole... because it's not even MY words. As originally mentioned, these comparisons come from 2 former Soviet citizens.

    If the Soviet government didn't agree with what you said, while they couldn't jail you or outright revoke the right to say it, it was very simple for them to simply make you disappear by claiming you were otherwise an enemy of the state. In the US, the executive branch reserves the right to claim US citizens are terrorists and detain them (without trial) at Guantanamo Bay. The fact that no one has used their discretion to do so so far (that we're aware of) does not erase the fact that it's possible.

    In the USSR, a person, his possessions and correspondence was inviolable without a warrant. Here is where it's a bit different. In the USSR, the enforcement agencies simply called their superiors and requested a warrant to do as they pleased. The US law enforcement simply passes legislation that says they don't need a warrant.

    Here's a neat one. In the original Soviet constitution, it was guaranteed that the individual Soviet Republics not only had the right to their own Constitutions, but those Constitutions could not be altered without their will. Moreover, the individual republics retained the right to secede from the USSR as part of the soviet constitution. I'm not sure how this doesn't sound like what's been happening with US States' rights to formulate their own laws.

    Perhaps the most unnerving is the proliferation of the idea that "You didn't build that". Here is a translation of the original Russian text.

    Article 1. Union of Soviet Socialist Republics is a socialist state of workers and peasants.
    Article 2. political foundation of the USSR is the Soviets of Workers' Deputies, which grew and became strong as a result of the overthrow of the landlords and capitalists and the dictatorship of the proletariat.
    Article 3. All power in the USSR belongs to the working people of town and country as represented by the Soviets.
    Article 4. economic foundation of the USSR is the socialist economic system and socialist ownership of the means of production, firmly established as a result of the elimination of the capitalist economic system, the abolition of private ownership of the means of production and the elimination of the exploitation of man by man.
    Article 5. Socialist property in the USSR exists either in the form of state ownership (national treasure), or a form of collective-farm property (property of collective farms, the property of cooperative societies).
    Article 6. land, its subsoil, water, forests, mills, factories, mines, rail, water and air transport, banks, communications, large state-organized agricultural enterprises (state farms, machine and tractor stations, etc.) as well as utilities and basic housing in cities and industrial localities, are state property, that is the whole people.
    Article 7. Public enterprises in collective farms and cooperative organizations, with their livestock and implements produced by the collective farms and cooperative organizations, as well as their public buildings are public, socialist property of the collective farms and cooperative organizations.
    Each collective farm, besides the basic income from the common, collective farms, has a personal use a small private plot of land in private ownership and subsistence farming on the plot, a dwelling house, livestock, poultry and minor agricultural implements - in accordance with the Charter of the Agricultural Artel.
    Article 8. land occupied by collective farms is secured to them in a free and unlimited time, that is, in perpetuity.
    Article 9. Along with the socialist economic system, which is the predominant form of agriculture in the USSR, the law permits the small private economy of individual peasants and artisans, based on personal labor and precluding the exploitation of the labor of others.
    Article 10. Right to private ownership in their incomes and savings to residential houses and subsidiary household to household items and appliances, articles of personal use and convenience, as well as the right to inherit personal property of citizens - are protected by law.
    Article 11. economic life of the USSR is determined and directed by the state in the economic plan of increasing the public wealth, steadily raising the material and cultural level of the working people, to strengthen the independence of the USSR and strengthening its defense capability.
    Article 12. Labour in the USSR is a duty and a matter of honor for every able-bodied citizen, according to the principle of "who does not work shall not eat."
    In the Soviet Union is the principle of socialism: "From each according to his ability, to each - according to his work."
    In other words, the USSR was the "You didn't build that" mentality writ large. The idea that the means of production exist because of the workers.

    In the Soviet Union, they simply took control of the means of production. In Western socialism, the concept is no different, they simply charge you higher taxes for their use.

    While there are important distinctions to make between the USA and USSR (Such as a top-down planned economy vs the free market economy) the similarities are striking and should be taken very seriously. Specifically in the realm of the Constitution becoming increasingly a show piece that the government allows itself to pick and choose which bits it likes vs which it doesn't.

  2. #2
    Even Stretch Armstrong would say you're reaching. But whatever makes things interesting for you.
    "But uh, says on your chart that you're fucked up. You talk like a fag and your shit's all retarded!"

    On Parole from Retard Rehabilitation since July 27, 2014.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by TradewindNQ View Post
    Even Stretch Armstrong would say you're reaching. But whatever makes things interesting for you.
    If you can point out how skirting Fourth amendment rights to security of person, residence and correspondence... and sixth amendment rights to trial is somehow stretching then by all means, explain.

  4. #4
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slippery_slope

    in short not worth my time today, I'll wait for someone like Wells to show up and deal with it.
    Last edited by Tradewind; 2013-05-16 at 05:33 PM.
    "But uh, says on your chart that you're fucked up. You talk like a fag and your shit's all retarded!"

    On Parole from Retard Rehabilitation since July 27, 2014.

  5. #5
    Elemental Lord Kalis's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Malta. Only here for the weather and those date pastry things that they have.
    Posts
    8,884
    The first two letters are the same as well...spooky.

  6. #6
    The Lightbringer Lenonis's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Chicago, IL
    Posts
    3,126
    Quote Originally Posted by Laize View Post
    "You didn't build that".
    *sigh*

    are we really going to have to rehash the debate where that quote is taken entirely out of context and twisted around from the intended meaning?

    Also, it's hard to take your post seriously given your very very very significant bias.

  7. #7
    The Lightbringer JfmC's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Antwerp City
    Posts
    3,401
    Quote Originally Posted by Laize View Post
    In the Soviet Union, they simply took control of the means of production. In Western socialism, the concept is no different, they simply charge you higher taxes for their use.
    I was almost taking your post seriously, untill I read this.

    Still an interesting read, even tough it smells like fearmongering and tinfoil hats
    Thread:Will we ever create A.I?
    So I just watched Her and it gave me a deep thought. Will man ever create an artificial consciousness or is it impossible. Anyone have any ideas?
    Quote Originally Posted by det View Post
    We are currently creating "A.S" - artificial stupidity. A.K.A internet forums

  8. #8
    Herald of the Titans
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Future Gadget Lab
    Posts
    2,864
    Quote Originally Posted by TradewindNQ View Post
    It's not really a slippery slope, as the government already has been violating the First, Second, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth, Ninth and Tenth Amendments.

    The only part of the Bill of Rights they haven't breached yet is the Third Amendment.

  9. #9
    The Unstoppable Force Rukentuts's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Mini Soda
    Posts
    22,073
    Quote Originally Posted by Arctic Daishi View Post
    It's not really a slippery slope, as the government already has been violating the First, Second, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth, Ninth and Tenth Amendments.

    The only part of the Bill of Rights they haven't breached yet is the Third Amendment.
    Feel free to file a Supreme Court case if you seriously think your interpretation of the Constitution is more accurate than the courts.
    Quote Originally Posted by GreatOak View Post
    Hey, as a transabled, transethnic, non-binary, genderqueer, neo-communist, indoor-capable republican otherkin I am offended by your callous display of ignorance.
    Quote Originally Posted by Eroginous View Post
    I wouldn't expect someone who thinks science provides proof to know that.

  10. #10
    The Lightbringer Lenonis's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Chicago, IL
    Posts
    3,126
    Quote Originally Posted by Arctic Daishi View Post
    It's not really a slippery slope, as the government already has been violating the First, Second, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth, Ninth and Tenth Amendments.

    The only part of the Bill of Rights they haven't breached yet is the Third Amendment.
    The implication that they will breach other parts of the bill of rights because of your perceived breaches of the others is exactly what a slippery slope is.

  11. #11
    I heard the popularity of hockey is on the rise as well in the USA, the time is nigh, friends!

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by TradewindNQ View Post
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slippery_slope

    in short not worth my time today, I'll wait for someone like Wells to show up and deal with it.
    If I were suggesting that we're heading toward gulags and soup lines you might have a point. But MY point is that our Constitution is increasingly becoming a show piece. Executive orders to help with spurious and vague wars on "terror" which subvert a great many rights are perfect analogues of what the Soviets did. There is no slippery slope that, for example, "gun control leads to other losses of rights". Our rights are, in fact, already subject to executive discretion.

    I'm simply pointing out where we already are. There is no small, minor step on the path to forfeiture of rights. They're already subject to discretion.

    And in response to your logical fallacy I give you the continuum fallacy. Your seeming belief that between freedom and despotism there exist no middle groundor transitory states.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Continuum_fallacy
    Last edited by Laize; 2013-05-16 at 05:47 PM.

  13. #13
    The Unstoppable Force Rukentuts's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Mini Soda
    Posts
    22,073
    Quote Originally Posted by Laize View Post
    If I were suggesting that we're heading toward gulags and soup lines you might have a point. But MY point is that our Constitution is increasingly becoming a show piece. Executive orders to help with spurious and vague wars on "terror" which subvert a great many rights are perfect analogues of what the Soviets did. There is no slippery slope that, for example, "gun control leads to other losses of rights". Our rights are, in fact, already subject to executive discretion.

    I'm simply pointing out where we already are. There is no small, minor step on the path to forfeiture of rights. They're already subject to discretion.
    Protip: The government could detain violent KKK members without a trial. This isn't anything new.
    Quote Originally Posted by GreatOak View Post
    Hey, as a transabled, transethnic, non-binary, genderqueer, neo-communist, indoor-capable republican otherkin I am offended by your callous display of ignorance.
    Quote Originally Posted by Eroginous View Post
    I wouldn't expect someone who thinks science provides proof to know that.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Lenonis View Post
    *sigh*

    are we really going to have to rehash the debate where that quote is taken entirely out of context and twisted around from the intended meaning?

    Also, it's hard to take your post seriously given your very very very significant bias.
    I know full well that quote is taken out of context. It is, however, taken out of context by both sides. It doesn't matter what the original meaning was if its current meaning has been warped.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Strakha View Post
    I heard the popularity of hockey is on the rise as well in the USA, the time is nigh, friends!
    I'm transitioning to a horse so it's actually "the time is neigh!" I would respect that you were a bit more inclusive and kept all peoples in mind when you say such things. Thank you.
    Quote Originally Posted by Oneru View Post
    Back in Molten Core in Vanilla, about 20 people up and the rest still being ressed. Cidet, our rogue, goes in stealth and moves up to Ragnaros. About 5 seconds later, Ragnaros aggroes and starts killing all of us again. Everyone is pissed and I whisper Cidet "wtf happened?!". All he replies me is...

    "Target has no pockets"

  16. #16
    the frog is saying his argument is a slippery slope; that's a start!!!

    Our 'rights' (or as George Carlin stated, 'privileges') are being revoked or ignored more and more each decade.

    This poem is of great importance in our society, because people are just assuming what they are told is truth, and that whomever they point the finger at must be the bad guy (incl red vs blue crap). You can insert whatever groups that makes you comfortable, but the end result is the same ...

    First they came for the communists,
    and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a communist.
    Then they came for the socialists,
    and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a socialist.
    Then they came for the trade unionists,
    and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a trade unionist.
    Then they came for me,
    and there was no one left to speak for me.




  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by Lenonis View Post
    The implication that they will breach other parts of the bill of rights because of your perceived breaches of the others is exactly what a slippery slope is.
    And yours is a continuum fallacy. "Just because they've breached some rights doesn't mean they'll breech others".

  18. #18
    Herald of the Titans
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Future Gadget Lab
    Posts
    2,864
    Quote Originally Posted by Lenonis View Post
    The implication that they will breach other parts of the bill of rights because of your perceived breaches of the others is exactly what a slippery slope is.
    They're hardly "perceived" breaches they're factual breaches. Also, they don't need to breach "other parts" seeing as they have already breached all of the other parts (minus the Third Amendment).

  19. #19
    Moderator Kasierith's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    St Petersburg
    Posts
    9,999
    Pretty much an example of old people who have no idea what they're talking about. The USSR went through multiple stages, and if they left in the 80's the world they left was completely different from the USSR at its origins. The mentality of the people in the US is dramatically different from Russians, back then and in the 80s. The focus of the courts is different; in your other thread recently, you saw an example of the universality of the law, of a girl being able to exploit the law to her own devices. As shocking as that is, it is a sign of a healthy system; where the authority and continuity of law supersedes the judge's and jury's personal feelings on the matter. The presence of capitalism as a prominent feature is dramatically different. the fact that there is a gap of multiple decades, with all of the innovations in technology and thought that comes with the passing of time, makes it nonequatable.

    Oh, and you can tell them that another Russian called them out on that, if you feel like it. Their assertions are pretty much nothing but confirmation bias.

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by Laize View Post
    And yours is a continuum fallacy. "Just because they've breached some rights doesn't mean they'll breech others".
    That's not what a continuum fallacy is...dismissing you for being too vague would be a continuum fallacy.
    "But uh, says on your chart that you're fucked up. You talk like a fag and your shit's all retarded!"

    On Parole from Retard Rehabilitation since July 27, 2014.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •