Monday, May 10, 2010

Sayings / Поговорки: Communist History Class

Victory Day in modern Russia on May 9th.

Regarding Stalin:
  • "With the rise of authoritarian regimes in Russia, the popularity of Stalin increases."
  • "Stalin's second wife committed suicide. Allegedly, it was because of his rudeness. But he was a rude guy, so maybe it was just the manifestation of his love."
  • "Without his murderous passion, Stalin would have been a great guy."
  • "Stalin was a coward. Nearly all dictators are cowards."

Regarding Gorbachov:
(Note: In the original Russian, the ending of the last name of the General Secretary/First President of the Soviet Union sounds more like the English long "o" sound: Горбачёв.)
  • "In my view, Gorbachov had the talent of being immune to learning. Now, now, you are laughing, but there is such a talent. He simply ignored the learning and never stressed words correctly. And he had a thick Ukrainian accent for being a Russian."
In the height of Gorbachov's anti-alcoholism campaign in the mid-1980s, people began moonlighting their own hard liquor.
  • "Russian especially managed to produce something resembling alcohol out of another substance, but they died from outright poisons. Therefore, Gorbachov failed because more people died from the effects of the anti-alcoholism campaign than before its installation."
During the USSR, vodka production was under strict control of the government; a full twenty percent of the state budget was even due to revenues collected from the consumption of vodka.
Even now in the Russian Federation, it is next to impossible to buy alcohol-based goods such as nail polish remover. It is five times as expensive, and a tenth of its size.

Only in Russia, only in Russia. Hence:
  • "Vodka is a national security issue."
Regarding the "Mysterious Russian Soul":
  • "We asked questions are first, but no one stood up to defend the answers. The machine would simply break them down until they not longer raised their hands."
  • "To be from Leningrad was suspicious. After all, there were revolutions, intellectuals (intelligentsia), and a deep imperial past."
  • "Many things done in Russia do not have a human face, but if there is a face, it is a less-than-human face. In contrast, the Prague uprising represented socialism with a human face."

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