December 10, 2012

"It's always interesting to me to see what others, especially Americans have to say about 'what it was like' to live under Communist rule."

Writes my colleague Nina, as she begins her annual journey back to Poland. She's reading Anne Applebaum's new book — "Iron Curtain: The Crushing of Eastern Europe, 1944-1956" — and thinking about her own nascent book:
Since I am so close to finishing my great (summer, as it turns out) writing project, it's a good time to take stock: to see if what I wrote still feels right. I'll be looking for that.

66 comments:

Seeing Red said...

Give it a generation, she'll have a revised edition.

Or it might collapse.

The Drill SGT said...

Anne Applebaum was certainly born in the US, but she's hardly a rookie when it comes to Eastern Europe and Communism. let's see:

- speaks Polish, French, Russian
- written 3-4 books on Communism, the Gulag, and the Iron Curtain.
- lived in Europe, mostly Poland since 88, e.g. she lived there under the Commies
- did I mention she's been married to a Pole, who is currently their Foreign Minister,for the last 20 years?
- I expect, but do not know, that she's now a dual Pole/American Cit.

Seeing Red said...

Via ZeroHedge:

..In France, Minister for Energy and Environment Delphine Batho recently proposed a light curfew to pertain to “in and outside shops, offices, and public buildings” between 1 a.m. and 7 a.m. beginning next July. Some merchants are up in arms as the rule adds to existing bans such as the forced closing of stores on Sunday and night shopping in general. If enacted, the illumination ban will quickly disperse Paris’s reputation as the “City of Light....”


We know what comes in the dark, at least we can protect ourselves......so far.

Surfed said...

Having grown up with the first Cuban refugees from the 1960's I know first hand that they how much they hate communism. Just recently I worked with a Cuban electician who boated to freedom about 10 years ago. You have no idea how happy he is to be a member of the local Union of Electricians and to be in this country. He spits when he speaks of Castro. In a lighter vein I can still see in my mind's eye Sister Dominica in 1st grade at St. Paul's Catholic School when the first Cubano children/students showed up. Looking down at one of them she said with a worried mein on her face and a thick Irish brouge "Ahh but your name can't be Jesus." How lucky America was to recieve those Bankers, Doctors, Lawyers, Engineers and Teachers.

Oso Negro said...

The average American may have a chance to know what it is like to live under communism soon enough. It is a short walk from "the rich need to pay their fair share" to "from each according to his ability, to each according to his need."

edutcher said...

We're certainly living under National Socialism.

edutcher said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Peter said...

I recommend reading "Iron Curtain: The Crushing of Eastern Europe, 1944-1956" by Anne Applebaum if you have any interest at all in the day-to-day details of how Eastern European countries were Sovietized after WWII.

Seeing Red said...

Check out Real Cuba on wordpress.


Robert Cook said...

"The average American may have a chance to know what it is like to live under communism soon enough."

Hahahahahaha!!

Ooga-Booga!!!

Robert Cook said...

"We're certainly living under National Socialism."

I'd laugh, but it's not nice to make fun of people who live in their own world of delusion.

Rusty said...

Robert Cook said...
"The average American may have a chance to know what it is like to live under communism soon enough."

Hahahahahaha!!

Ooga-Booga!!!

Why do you say that Bob? It's your most fervent desire to have the government control everything. You're getting what you want.
Be happy, comrade.

bagoh20 said...

Ooga Booga happens. Tell me how this story differs from a Nazi or communist state.

Florida tortures and murders a child while the family begs for them to stop.

William said...

The only artists and intellectuals who are anti-Communist are those who grew up under Communism.

Marshal said...

Robert Cook said...
I'd laugh, but it's not nice to make fun of people who live in their own world of delusion.


I've been looking for a laugh this morning but Cook criticizing others' delusional beliefs was beyond anything I expected.


gerry said...

The beauty about encroaching statism is that, after the comrades have murdered the first round of class enemies, the economic catastrophes following full deployment of an unworkable economic model require the finding of subversives, internal enemies that are thwarting, obviously, the workers' paradise for selfish reasons.

So, the original comrades are shot, bludgeoned, tortured, interned in asylums, subjected to medical and psychogical experiments, etc. I'll be long gone when they come to get Robert Cook. But the irony will be noticed by somebody.

Rich B said...

My wife and I just watched "Torn Curtain" this weekend. Brings you back to the days when communism was considered the wave of the future and reminds you of what a police state meant for the citizens.

Bill, Republic of Texas said...

I'll flip the comment and say it is always interesting to hear what Russians have to say about living under communism. My wife, her family, friends were all products of the Soviet Union. The reactions range from ambivalence to support.

One would think the victims of communism would hate it but they actually miss it. They yearn for the economic and social stability. On one level they understand the economic deprivations were real. They lived through the implosion of the economy but they still miss communisisn. They hate the economic insecurity and lack of jobs. They hate seeing their parents living on $100 per month pensions. The smaller cities and villages are dying. Many would be willing to go back in time.

Colonel Angus said...

I've been looking for a laugh this morning but Cook criticizing others' delusional beliefs was beyond anything I expected.

Robert Cook's sincerity of beliefs is only exceeded by his naivety of human nature. He once stated that the size and complexity of our society necessitated a large central government, yet, he is apalled at the excesses of such a government. Therein lies the problem Mr. Cook; the more power you bestow upon the State, the less freedom we the people get. It's the nature of government, something our founding fathers knew only too well.

Colonel Angus said...

They hate the economic insecurity and lack of jobs. They hate seeing their parents living on $100 per month pensions. The smaller cities and villages are dying. Many would be willing to go back in time.

Let them. Evidently after 20 years they haven't figured out the free enterprise system and instead embraced what essentially amount to an oligarchy its no surprise they want to go back to communism.

Although its hard to lay too much blame on them. 70 years of communism probably led to a significant amount of brain rot that probably became part of Russian DNA.

Insufficiently Sensitive said...

'Iron Curtain' - finally! - shines a bright light on the sordid details of all those 'People's Governments' which our peaceniks used to prefer to our own.

It also provides some disturbing hints and parallels, by comparison with our current leftist/Chicago regime. 'We won' has an eerie resonance.

bagoh20 said...

There are two kinds of people: those who welcome the unknown as opportunity, and those who fear it as impending disaster. The second are the vast majority, and they only survive by depending on the first type to move things and create prosperity.

The shame is that the stability seekers are deluding themselves in believing that 1)there is any real security from disaster. 2) hiding from the world and it's natural pressures makes you safer, 3) the protected secure life is preferable to the challenged one.

Now, people don't generally change in this regard, and the stability seekers will always want more. That's just the way it is. There are always more parasites than hosts, but they are currently in the process of sucking their hosts dry, and that will mean they lose everything. In fact they will be left even worse off than the hosts, who can always make their way. You statists would be smart to honor, reward, and encourage the opportunity seekers. They provide everything you want, they can't help themselves, and only need to be given opportunity and freedom to continue supporting you. Don't be the parasite clinging to the dead host.

Rusty said...

Surfed said...

My wifes first husbands family was Cuban. Her ex mother in law lived with us for a while.
They had a small farm in Cuba. She came over in the sixties, I think, and then proceeded to work two jobs her whole adult life to buy her sisters and brother from Fidel.
Cuba is simply an island prison run by criminals.

Cedarford said...

Oso Negro said...
The average American may have a chance to know what it is like to live under communism soon enough. It is a short walk from "the rich need to pay their fair share" to "from each according to his ability, to each according to his need."

=================
Under that noted Communist Eisenhower, the rich paid their fair share at a 90% top taxation rate. Yet even while the Hero Jobs Creators were getting socked with big taxes - they got richer as the country grew and jobs and wages were also on a 5-7% growth trajectory.
The noted pinko Nixon also had similar views - supported progressivity in taxes and noted that "That's the way the communists take over, you know...you have 5,000 people controlling 95% of the wealth in a country of 25 million and sure...the average peasant or worker is going to want that changed."

phx said...

We're certainly living under National Socialism.

Who let the moby in?

Unknown said...

To chime in with Oso Negro, it is also a short step from "You didn't build that" to "You don't own that".

cubanbob said...

Cedaford at that time the high rate was in place to pay down the war debt and civilian spending was a fraction of today's. Of course being the only economy speaking of in those days helped. Put you money where your mouth is and write the check. Do you really think you can raise taxes to those levels and the economy will grow at 7%? RC at least has the naivety to believe that. Are you that naive or just merely nasty and ignorant?

Now enlighten us and give us a rational argument why you are worth paying higher taxes for today and forevermore.

RC fortunately for you the republicans are too cowardly and corrupt to propose a private-public sector equalization plan where your benefits cannot exceed those of what government provides private sector taxpayers. Just think of how sweet it would be for you to only get what social security and medicare will provide you when you reach the age that you would qualify for them if you were a private sector employee and no collecting before age 65 or 68 depending on what age you would be qualified at.

Bill ask your relatives if the USSR was so wonderful why did it need a Stalin and why did it collapse? Everyone I have ever met that had lived under communism hated it and thought the only good communists were the dead ones.



furious_a said...

About all that can be said about "Communist Rule" in Europe is that it kept a lid on free-lance (e.g., Caucasus, Yugoslavia) ethnic cleansing, reserving it exclusively for the State (e.g., Volga Germans, Bulgarian Turks, Romanian Magyars).

"...'what it was like'..." -- the Iron Curtain turned a nation full of Germans into just another screwed-up poor country with a dictatorship and, beyond sealing its borders, shabby infrastructure and a Soviet work ethic.

Germans on either side of the searchlit minefields, one side producing Wartburgs and Trabants and the other Mercedes' and BMWs....'nuff said.

Unknown said...

Colonel Angus remarks, "
Let them. Evidently after 20 years they haven't figured out the free enterprise system and instead embraced what essentially amount to an oligarchy its no surprise they want to go back to communism."

Actually, "they" haven't seen much free enterprise since the USSR collapsed. That rule-of-law, open market, and transparency stuff necessary for a free-enterprise economy is simply not there. And I don't think that "they" embraced the oligarchy; it was forced on them.

cubanbob said...

Unkown' it was Putin and the former big shot communists who took over the country. Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.

furious_a said...
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furious_a said...

What life IS like under Communist rule.

Cedarford said...

Actually, "they" haven't seen much free enterprise since the USSR collapsed. That rule-of-law, open market, and transparency stuff necessary for a free-enterprise economy is simply not there. And I don't think that "they" embraced the oligarchy; it was forced on them.

=================
Well stated.
Expecting the nations of the former Soviet Union to turn on a dime and have a complete and fair capitalist system was as stupid a pipe dream as the Neocons claiming that Democracy and Freedom! would transform the Noble Iraqi and Noble Afghan freedom-lovers into prosperous, peaceful, pro western lands with female equality.

What happened in the ex-Soviet Bloc was crony capitalism on steroids..far worse than the corrupted America of today run by the likes of the Al Gore Green mob and Goldman Sachs.
Oligarchs bought whole sectors of the economy of Russia for kopecks on the ruble from Yeltsin and his pack of crooks. Standard of living for the average Russian declined, lifespan declined - while the new oligarch "Jobs Creator" class went expat lived high on the hog in London, Switzerland, Israel.

Putin was supposed to come in and clean up the Yeltsin mess. Instead, he made an example out of a few Jewish robber-oligarchs to high public approval but then worked out his own sweet corruption arrangements with the other oligarchs.

Not just Russia, but Belarus, Romania, Moldava fouled it up and let a rapacious few grab the resources and industries because they plunged right in without setting a framework up to check the worst aspects of capitalist greed and unscrupulous entrepreneurs.
Other nations had better transitions, but they were places that had memory of once being prosperous capitalist countries and ability to resurrect the norms and laws needed.

Methadras said...

Blacks also loved the soviet union. Maybe they should have been asked too.

traditionalguy said...

We just need to become civilized according to the Marxian vision in which owning private property is an uncivilized act.

I believe Comrade Obama calls that revolution redistribution.

But as long as we vote for him and his lies there will be no going back.

traditionalguy said...

We just need to become civilized according to the Marxian vision in which owning private property is an uncivilized act.

I believe Comrade Obama calls that revolution redistribution.

But as long as we vote for him and his lies there will be no going back.

Cedarford said...

cubanbob said...
Cedaford at that time the high rate was in place to pay down the war debt and civilian spending was a fraction of today's. Of course being the only economy speaking of in those days helped. Put you money where your mouth is and write the check. Do you really think you can raise taxes to those levels and the economy will grow at 7%? RC at least has the naivety to believe that. Are you that naive or just merely nasty and ignorant?

Now enlighten us and give us a rational argument why you are worth paying higher taxes for today and forevermore.


===============
Sorry, Cubanbob - the argument is over.

Tax hikes on the rich are coming and will be in place at least as long as the failed experiment under Bush and Obama for 11 years. The "good ol' Reagan" supply side crap that "temporary" tax cuts on the wealthy would not concentrate wealth, but instead create a economic huge expansion in a prosperous middle class greatly expanded by the "jobs Creators".
That Wars of Adventure and free prescription drugs didn't have to be paid for because high growth would generate all the revenue to pay for those trillions in debt.

All turned out to be a crock of shit along with free trade "freeing workers" to get even better high-paying jobs in America.

The experiment failed.
Reagan supply side theory is dead with that failure.
Reagan free trade theory is dead with that failure.
And with the 2012 election, the consequences of Republicans being with Grover Norquist and the wealthy "Owners" while ignoring the other 98% of Americans is obvious.

I far preferred Romney to Obama, but was not surprised by the outcome.






n.n said...

You can live under communism, even enjoy marginal success. The real problem is two-fold. The communists sustained their power through exploitation of differentials (e.g. race) and gradients (e.g. wealth). Through their redistributive policies, they marginalized and eviscerated competing interests. The lack of those interests predisposed the regime to suffer progressive corruption, and permitted them to run amuck, where they would kill or imprison anyone who would challenge their central authority.

Rusty said...

n.n said...
You can live under communism, even enjoy marginal success. The real problem is two-fold. The communists sustained their power through exploitation of differentials (e.g. race) and gradients (e.g. wealth). Through their redistributive policies, they marginalized and eviscerated competing interests. The lack of those interests predisposed the regime to suffer progressive corruption, and permitted them to run amuck, where they would kill or imprison anyone who would challenge their central authority.

That and the fact that they were so economically inefficient.

Zach said...

I live in East Germany, and I've worked with and for former Soviets.

Most of the people you talk to, even the anti-communist ones, will say that it was surprisingly comfortable to live under communism. Maybe not so much comfortable as placid. You basically knew how much money you were going to make in life -- it was basically impossible to do much better, and very hard to do worse. So you didn't get paid much, but you didn't have to work very hard, either. Even nowadays, East Germany seems much more restful than West Germany.

Late stage communism was oppressive in different ways than early stage communism. Less iron boot of oppression, more convincing people not to try in the first place.

William said...

During a year of perfect weather and bountiful harvests, the Soviet Union finally surpassed the grain harvest of 1913 Russia. The year was 1957.....During those years that the tax rate was higher, the federal government actually collected less money from the wealthy. I don't know what the optimum tax rate is. Perhaps it's higher than 36%, but one can say with absolute certainty that it's lower than 90%...... Isn't it pretty to think that if the rich become poorer, the poor will become richer.....

Oso Negro said...

Sure, Zach, it was so fucking comfortable that it was necessary to build a wall to keep them in. Nothing, but nothing says comfortable life style like a wall with razor-wire and machine gun emplacements to be sure you fully enjoy your comfort. Please. People fondly misremember the most outrageous bullshit.

Unknown said...

Cedarford on taxation: "Under that noted Communist Eisenhower, the rich paid their fair share at a 90% top taxation rate."

So tell me explicitly, Cedarford, who is "rich" and what is "fair". Numbers, please. Ideal would be a filled-in table of tax percentage vs. income level.

Zach said...

I know that, Oso. I lived a block from the death strip for two years. I'm writing from a gigantic communist high rise as we speak. There's a monument a block away to the East German uprisings of 1953, and I can see a plaque to the '89 protestors from my window (or could, if it weren't snowing).

Not everybody had the same reaction to the communists. Some people were violently opposed. Some people liked it. It was, after all, the system they grew up in and lived under for 50 years. If you get people talking and don't tip your hand about what you expect to hear, you can hear some interesting things.

I'm not saying I agree with these people. I'm saying, that's what they say. If you want to learn things, you have to let people talk.

David said...

Zach said...
I live in East Germany, and I've worked with and for former Soviets.

Most of the people you talk to, even the anti-communist ones, will say that it was surprisingly comfortable to live under communism. Maybe not so much comfortable as placid. You basically knew how much money you were going to make in life -- it was basically impossible to do much better, and very hard to do worse. So you didn't get paid much, but you didn't have to work very hard, either. Even nowadays, East Germany seems much more restful than West Germany.


Thus the joke "we pretend to work, and they pretend to pay us."

That system can't last long, and didn't. It won't work well here either.

McTriumph said...

Nina was unfortunate not to live in the USSR, it was a workers' paradise according to the New York Times reporting for fifty years.

Of course the evil Koch brothers' father disagreed, he actually worked there, but the left laughed.

furious_a said...

... it was surprisingly comfortable to live under communism.

The in-good-party-standing nomenklatura, with their hard-currency store, housing, foreign travel, elite medical care and property (dachas, automobiles) privileges and bribe-taking opportunities were better off relative to their bottom 95% than the top 5% in the US is to its own.

Kirk Parker said...

William,

"The only artists and intellectuals who are anti-Communist are those who grew up under Communism. "


Stop me if I've mentioned this before, but when we lived in Africa we meet numerous folks who had done some amount of graduate study in the West and in Soviet bloc countries (this was in the first half of the 80's so the Warsaw Pact was still a real going concern.)

Some (but not all) of the people who had gone to the US, England, Germany, or France came back resentful and suspicious of the West--a somewhat understandable reaction: how could we have so much wealth and ease?!? But those who went to the USSR or its client states came back universally certain that, whatever the answer was, it certainly wasn't communism!

bagoh20 said...

Virtually nobody paid those 90+% tax rates. It's just a leftist fantasy. There were all kinds of ways around it, and they were used by nearly everyone at the time.

I mean just think of the stupidity of working to earn $100 only to keep $5, or risking $100 to make $10 profit and keep $.50. Do you really think people did that?

Look at the record. Regardless of what the tax rate was, revenue collected has been bouncing around the same level for many decades, only slumping during recessions, because higher rates just decrease investment, and spending among the taxpayers, slowing the economy and bringing the revenue right back to where it would be anyway. Same with tax cuts. They spur the economy and the revenue goes right back where it was before the cuts. The difference is with cuts more people are working and paying the bills: their own and the government's

The problem is that while revenue is very sticky, government spending can be anything we want and thus has skyrocketed. Federal spending has risen 12 times as fast as the median income.

It doesn't matter what you think or want, revenue will not be able to be increased for any length of time through any mechanism other than prosperity. Get over the idea of getting more revenue. Spending is the problem, and not military spending, which is lower than it's been since before WWII, which obviously was a mistake back then.

All we get is talk aimed at avoiding the solution, because the solution takes real courage. We need to cut everything, but most especially and severely government employees, entitlements, Social Security and Medicare. Talking about anything else is playing pretend leadership. Serious times and serious problems demand honesty, and I don't hear any by anyone.

Cedarford said...

Unknown said...
Cedarford on taxation: "Under that noted Communist Eisenhower, the rich paid their fair share at a 90% top taxation rate."

So tell me explicitly, Cedarford, who is "rich" and what is "fair". Numbers, please. Ideal would be a filled-in table of tax percentage vs. income level.

===============
Sorry, "unknown" the debate is over.
Now it is just up to Obama and Boehner to hash out what the very rich have to pay.
I heard 39%.
I have heard others say it should be at a rate that produces the fraction of each dollar a rich person earns that is free and clear disposable income that matches what the median American worker has left of each dollar in disposable income after the true necessities are taken care of.

But that will depend on entitlement cutbacks. Elimination of many middle class entitlements would mean a higher tax rate on the rich to reflect that % of each dollar the richest get to match what the median worker gets "clear" of each dollar earned once entitlements are cut.

Paddy O said...

Zach, I spent a week in Leipzig last year and I heard much the same thing. There were people who welcomed change (the whole candle movement is a testimony), but a lot of people really were better off in their understanding. It was comfortable and predictable. I was told there were a large numbers of suicides after the change--people just didn't know how to cope.

That being said, the Stasi museum is about as creepy a place as you can find. It was a safe country but there's was a very big damage to their community because of the informant system---people don't trust. That was one of the issues that current residents I talked to are trying to find ways to overcome. It's well-nigh impossible for some.

Cedarford said...

Unknown said...
Cedarford on taxation: "Under that noted Communist Eisenhower, the rich paid their fair share at a 90% top taxation rate."

So tell me explicitly, Cedarford, who is "rich" and what is "fair". Numbers, please. Ideal would be a filled-in table of tax percentage vs. income level.

===============
Sorry, "unknown" the debate is over.
Now it is just up to Obama and Boehner to hash out what the very rich have to pay.
I heard 39%.
I have heard others say it should be at a rate that produces the fraction of each dollar a rich person earns that is free and clear disposable income that matches what the median American worker has left of each dollar in disposable income after the true necessities are taken care of.

But that will depend on entitlement cutbacks. Elimination of many middle class entitlements would mean a higher tax rate on the rich to reflect that % of each dollar the richest get to match what the median worker gets "clear" of each dollar earned once entitlements are cut.

ambienisevil said...
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ambienisevil said...
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ambienisevil said...
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Unknown said...

It is not surprising that Cedarford would dance and yodel around the questions of "who is rich?" and "what is fair". The left never wants to stick to a fact or number, just escalate their squeals of "gimme".

Oso Negro said...

Dear Zach, I am married to a former Komsomol leader. I have been listening to her talk for the past 20 years. None of her relatives much wanted to linger in the former, either, and after breaching the Iron Visa Wall that replaced the Iron Curtain, there has been quite a lot of resettling. Family memories include being starved in the village by Stalin, imprisonment by Khruschev (twice), and levels of corruption that Washington D.C. can only admire from a wistful distance. Not only did I listen, chum, I even recorded the old folks on video, in what seemed the unlikely event that future generations would romanticize the U.S.S.R.. I am telling you, people can fondly misremember the past, especially when they have to get off their asses and jam to earn their keep in the present.

Eric said...

Under that noted Communist Eisenhower, the rich paid their fair share at a 90% top taxation rate

First of all, "fair" is a subjective concept. It may seem fair to you that someone else pays most of his income to the government, but I doubt that seems fair at all to the people expected to pay such a usurious rate. Of course you're in the majority on that score because it's always easy to convince people someone else ought to be paying more taxes. Until, as Thatcher noted, you run out of other peoples' money.

Of course nobody in the Eisenhower era actually paid 90% on their earnings. It used to be pretty easy to shelter your income if you had a good accountant. That was the whole rationale behind the Tax Reform Act of 1986 - people in the different brackets paid pretty much what they'd always paid without having to go through the extra work of sheltering their money.

Also, raising rates on high wage earners, even assuming you could get them to pay, won't materially affect the budget, since there aren't that many of them. Everybody in the Democratic party establishment knows that, too. But who cares, eh, as long as people who make more than me get cut down to size?

If Congress is dumb enough to raise rates much for high income earners those people will either leave or recognize their income in another country. This isn't 1950 any more, with half the world in virtual enslavement and the other half in fear of attack. There are lots of nice places out there one could go, and almost every country has a visa program for rich people. We do.

2/3s of the people who make more than a million pounds a year recently left the UK to avoid a new 50% tax rate. The British government lost seven billion pounds by raising rates. I suppose Art Laffer is, well, laughing.

The funny thing about socialists is how they seem really fuzzy on the differences between wealth, earnings, nominal tax rates, and taxes actually paid. I see this Eisenhower thing all over and I can't decide if people are being deceitful or ignorant.

Eric said...

I am telling you, people can fondly misremember the past, especially when they have to get off their asses and jam to earn their keep in the present.

I wonder how much of that is just people fondly remembering their own youth, as if bringing back the USSR would wipe away the years.

Oso Negro said...

Interesting point, Eric. On the great scale of life, it may be a more cheery experience to be 20 years old in East Germany than to be 50 years old in Germany.

Eric said...

Exactly. Was Erich Honecker worse than gout?

Oso Negro said...

Probably not. Would I have Jimmy Carter in the White House again if I could eliminate the pain in my 55-year-old back? Hmmm....

AllenS said...

If anyone during the Eisenhower era actually paid 90% of their income in taxes, I'll bet they only let that happen once. If it happened at all.

Hyphenated American said...

"Under that noted Communist Eisenhower, the rich paid their fair share at a 90% top taxation rate"

Let's not forget that noted right-wing extremists like JFK and LBJ cut it from 91% to 70%.

chrisnavin.com said...

As the CATO institute says: you want the private sector growing faster than the government.

More people working, more risk-taking, more tax revenue.

The trick is not to have someone as far Left as Obama in office.

chrisnavin.com said...

Hey Red Robert, while printing out Socialist fliers for the next meeting, how about we just take over the means of production at Kinkos?

You secure the copying machines, and me, Sergey and Juan Manuel will go take over the paper mill at gunpoint after some guerilla warfare.

Time to take of the training wheels and start the revolution, comrade.