Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Zinoviev's communism definition

The Madhouse is written in the Brezhnev era when the fear of Stalin type actions was reducing and the obvious gap between the quality of life in the West and Russia was clear to anyone who wanted to open their eyes. The result is a cynicism about communism as a political approach that permeates all of The Madhouse with one stunning example of Zinoviev’s definition of communism:

He talks about defining a society buy the amount of good quality goods (in this case sandals and potatoes) they make and bad quality with the good quality going to the leadership and the bad going to the masses. On paper communism should supply nothing but good quality goods to its people. But you could not be more wrong…

“If your calculations had produced the following result: eleven pairs of good sandals (two pairs for the Gen Sec and a pair each for the chief members of the Politburo) and two hundred and fifty-four million nine hundred and ninety-nine thousand and nine hundred and eighty-nine bad pairs, and similarly eleven tons of good potatoes (two tons for the Gen Sec and a ton each for the chief members of the Politburo) and two hundred and fifty-four million nine hundred and ninety-nine hundred and ninety-nine thousand and nine hundred and eighty-nine tons of bad ones, then you could say with complete assurance that you are dealing with a society under full communism.”

No comments: