: : :: Oh yeah, have I endorsed any EXISTING or PAST system of "communism"? Where? And what did I say about it?
: : The second you do you'll have to answer for its depravity. It will be a cold day before you support anything but your own collectivist rantings. Same as all the rest - stroking your own ego with intellectual jello.
: : Stuart Gort
: Well, I defend certain models of actually existing socialism, and as yet I see no 'depravity' to answer for. When I defend socialism as it was incarnated in Nicaragua, in India, and in Burkina Faso, its record is essentially spotless. Quite simply, there are no crimes to apologize for. In Vietnam on the other hand, I believe I recorgnized that the VC weren't able to resist the temptation to bloodlust and easy violence that had successfully tempted men before them for millenia. They went overboard with the reprisals and the use of punitive and 'exemplary' violence- most famously in Hue in 1968- and they did many things that were deeply wrong; and I have no doubt that the men responsible for it will suffer.
Your still in the dark as to what happened in Nicaragua. The Sandanistas, the ones that made it to power, used the Fidel Castro model; use whoever will support you until you gain power, then liquidate them to consolidate that power. Where do you think the Contra's came from? The Contra's were led by former Sandanistas. Only thing is they didn't wait around to get a slug in the back of the neck.
India; Is that a socialist success story? Hmmmm. To bad their oppressing the Tamils. And the Pakistanis may also have a differing opinion from yours. But at least they've got nukes, which they can afford becuase the per capita income is a whopping $1,491.00 per year. I imagine when the literacy rate climbs above it's present 52% though the citizens of that country may have some questions about that sort of spending.
Burkina Faso; per capita income; $700.00 per year. Sufferage; none. Life expectancy; females-48, males-45. "Most people engage in subsistence farming or livestock raising, and industrialization is minimal."
Rand McNally World Facts and Maps, '99 edition.
: Still, I believe that for all their sins and faults, the North Vietnamese were still better than the alternative- the governments of Diem, Thieu, and Air Vice Marshal Ky. They were very far from being perfect- but they were better than the alternative, and now that they are the legitimate rulers of the land, their positive acheivements as well as their unfortunate excesses should be recorginzed. i believe that;s all I've said in favor of the VC- that, and the fact that the refugee exodus, while tragic, was dwarfed by the exodus fleeing the American revolution. Capitalist revolutions produce as many rfeugees as socialist ones, and in the main have resulted in more suffering.
The pertinent question is; "Under what conditions are revolutions justified?"
: To ask me to answer for the criems of 'socialist' regimes is a bit silly, don't you think, when you have yet to apologize for the crimes of Ronald Reagan, a man you claim to admire. During Reagan's tenure, massive numbers of innocent people were killed by death squads, terrorist armies, and governments that received heavy financial, diplomatic, advisory, moral, and military support from Reagan. A million killed by the right-wing RENAMO terrorists in Mozambique; a quarter million killed by the Guatemalan army, often with American Green Berets beside them on the firing line; seventy-five thousand killed by the Republican Alliance in El Salvador; thirty thousand killed by teh Contras in Nicaragua. Can you honestly argue that reagan DIDN"T support these peopel and abet them in their killings? And that on occasion, he went even further, sending actual American soldiers to kill innocent villagers in Guatemala?
Again, this all really goes back to sovereignty, doesn't it? Does a sovereign nation have the right to defend itself from those who advocate its violent overthrow? The answer of course is 'yes'. Does that nation have the right to ask for aid from foreign countries? The answer is again 'yes'. I think that your just sore because your guys took a shellacking in Guatamala and El Salvador.
Another important point worth remembering is that these countries have no idea what 'democracy' means or is. Most of these countries are ruled not by the people, the indiginous peole, but by the descendants of the Conquistadors; that's right folks, Europeans. Before you throw your weight behind the likes of the Ortegas, you ought to research the intra-family ties. Can you say 'oligarchy'? The rulers are not interested in Communism or Capitalism, their interested in keeping power.