Sunday, March 27, 2011

The Rise and Fall of Communism by Archie Brown

The way communism was to work was people received what they needed and contributed what they could. Problem with this is that it does not work. Why would you work when you saw that others did not, but got the same things as you did? I remember one Russian worker at the fall of communism say, “We pretend to work and they pretend to pay us”. See an entry on Wikipedia on Russian Jokes .

Our North American Indians practiced such a policy of people contributing what they can and getting back what they need. However, these were small groups of people and they deeply depended on each other to survive. If not everyone contributed then the group would not survive. They also need to take care of members of the group so the group would survive.

Brown starts off with philosophical beginnings of the communist creed and traces communism to its down fall. I think that it fell because not everyone wants the same thing. That seemed to be the philosophy of communism that everyone got the same things. Of course, this is not what really happened; the leaders and the elite lived much better than the masses. A lot of people wanted to escape. This seemed to be the reason for the downfall of communism.

There were lots of good reasons people had to try and improve the lot of the common man. Karl Marx said a lot of interesting things. I think in the west that we ignore a lot of the stuff he said to our philosophical detriment. He was thinking of a better future of the lot of the common man. He was wrong in how to better the lot of the common man, but that does not take away the fact that he said interesting things and was a great thinker. There is a biography on Karl Max on Wikipedia . There is another great article on him at The History Guide under Lectures on Modern European Intellectual History.

For a good book review, see The Telegraph . You can see part of a lecture by Archie Brown about this book on Book TV and another short interview at YouTube.
There is a lot of interesting videos on YouTube about the fall of communism. See YouTube. This is about the Fall of Communism – 1991 giving news as it happens. There are 6 parts to this newscast. Also, there is a YouTube documentary on the Soviet loss of control over Eastern Europe. See YouTube. There is also a documentary on the Ceausescu execution in 1989 on YouTube.

This may be a long book at over 700 pages, but it is an easy and enjoyable read. We are so lucky nowadays because not only can we read books available, but we can also see lectures by our authors on the internet and see lots of information on the internet about any subject we can to read about.

On my website is how to find this book on Amazon if you care to purchase it. See Brown. Also, this book review and other books I have reviewed are on my website at Book Reviews.

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