Saturday, May 23, 2015

Why Communism Fail


Communists Movement – November 7, 1917 – November 9, 1989

The great French historian, Fernand Braudel, wrote that history has various levels. Climate and geography tend to play an important role together with ideas that change slowly and gradually. The French Revolution was a moment in the West’s long tradition of violent struggles andJean-Jacques Rousseau, a comet in the galaxy of democratic theory.

The communist movement was started on November 7, 1917 when the Bolsheviks had captured the Winter Palace and dissolved between November 9, 1989 when the Berlin Wall came down and December 25, 1991, when the Soviet Union was eliminated. Communism was claimed as the guiding ideology by the Bolsheviks, though the slogans which earned support for them helped in winning the Russian Civil War, enabling them to complete their revolution.

 The Bolsheviks rose in a power vacuum which they had not brought about when the tsar stepped down in March 1917 and they were a tiny group within the large and different Russian socialist movement. All the main elements of the Russian socialist movement opposed the war, unlike their counterparts in democratic Western Europe. The destiny of the Western Socialist had been tangled with the bourgeois state, which they claimed to loathe irrespective of imperial Germany or republican France.

Source – Split Between Socialist & Communist

It was a state which they considered to co-exist, where its institutions sheltered them to some extent and its property began to trickle down to the working classes. This became the source for the split between the Socialist and Communist in the West where the former’s objective of reforming capitalism could not be compromised with the latter’s aim of modernizing the state without it.

In comparison to Russia, the socialist movement which Bolsheviks were a vital part, did not own anything to the state. They were of the belief that stardom needed no support and gave nothing. However what the Bolsheviks built was not a socialist society.

The Bolsheviks’ first move was to provide land to the peasants, who started taking it anyway, which increased the importance of private property in the new state. Some of the succeeding measures, from huge state intervention at the time of the civil war to the limited markets reforms of the New Economic Policy – 1920s, to the costly industrialization of 1930s, had little to ideology though lot to improvised realism which societies tend to display in chaos and revolution.

Fusion between the East & West

Russian Communists did face a problem that pervaded the country all through the 19th century which was modernization. The awareness of Russia’s backward situation obsessed and united the elites though the Bolsheviks were divided over what strategy to be adopted to catch up with the West.

The victorious Communist’s answer was a fusion between the East and the West wherein they had made their way to industrialization though under the guidance of older ideology, Marxist socialism, which had been initiated in Western Europe.

The Russian Communist at first presumed that their revolution would not stay on, in isolation and they would need the success of their Western companions who in turn would require the prestige of Russia’s success to supersede their local reformist rivals.

However from its initiation, the international communist movement was uncertain by an irresolvable structural tension. While in the East, the Communists were in command of underdeveloped society which needed to be industrialized quickly, in the West, where industrialization was not a problem; the Communists desired a revolutionary break with capitalism.

China More Capitalist Than Others

China tends to be more capitalist than other country and one hears that on a reasonably regular basis, even from socialist who seems to know better than the others. Old Maoist like Alain Badious claims that China turned that under Deng Xiaoping – who follows the path of the capitalist. Ephemeral socialist such as Slavoj Zizek is of the opinion that Chinese capitalism is unrestrained unlike the bourgeois democracies of Europe.

There are various prominent theories as to why communism could be unsustainable in organizing society, the one noted by Hayek and Popper, wherein the former provides a literal road map on how communism tends to fail. There are various theories on how society could or could not be organized.

 It is almost difficult to run controlled experiments on real population to envisage what could work, which is the reason why some tend to point to the failures of Soviet Russia and Maoist China since only two data aims that do not adequately prove communism seems to be a failed ideology.

Over the last two centuries, communistic societies had been tried many times especially like small communities in rural North America and most of them failed within a period of 18 months. Some of the towns like Indiana, New Harmony, Ohio, and Utopia were second generation efforts at such societies probably with the lessons learned in prior failure.

Several Intentional Communities Prevail

Few voluntary communistic experiments which lasted more than several years resulted in dilution of the communal ownership of property, since one kind of communal asset after another suffered tragedy of the commons.

Several Intentional Communities prevail presently across the globe most of which are based on socialist/communist governance though none to these communities draw more than a fraction of population in their individual countries resulting in failure at higher rates than the town which have developed from scratch. One would be of the opinion that small societies comprised of self-selected believers would provide social experiments with important survival benefits though due to some reasons, individual commitment fails to interpret into collective success.

Efforts to implement communism through state power have usually been totalitarian bloodbaths, with extreme privation. 94 million people, towards the 20th century perished in failed, state sponsored implementation of communism.

From a reasonable point of view, when every large scale implementation of governance practice tends to lead to escalating violence and compelled to make it work, it speaks about the compatibility of that governance practice with nature of the people trying to govern it. In other words, if communism seems to be incompatible on the behaviour of people, accusing human nature would not absolve communism of its failure.

To sum it, communism is a failed ideology since all efforts in implementation in either voluntarily or through compulsion have conformed to the theories foreseeing its disaster

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