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Discussion Starter #1
After reading one of the threads on this forum, I just remembered a confusion that seems widely spread.
When conservative individuals want to use a pejorative name for liberals, they tend to use the term communist. Communism is just an ideology. The forceful implementation of communism, as in the case of many countries like Cuba, USSR, China, etc. is a communist dictatorship. Communism is not the problem. The dictatorship part is. There have been, and there are now, countries were socialist and communist parties have reached a democratic government. France, Italy, Spain, Greece and others, have had or have now, socialist or communist democracies.
I’m not a communist. I’m a liberal, but I believe that if you want to be a communist, in a free country, you should be able to. If you want to be a fascist, you should be able to as well. As long as you comply with the laws, you should be able to have any ideology you choose. That’s just part of what makes a country a democracy.
I just wanted to get that out of my chest.
 

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Exactly. Like people should be able to believe in whatever religon they want to , as long as they obey the law. Same difference.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Do you know of a country where communists are in the majority which has not become a dictatorship?
I know there have been others but since Spain is where I am from and the case I know better I'll set it as an example.
See Elecciones generales españolas de 1982 - Wikipedia, la enciclopedia libre

Spain had a majority socialist party in government from 1982 to 1994 ( I might be off on the dates by a year or so ). I'm not saying that they did a good job or not. Just saying that democracy and leftist parties are not incompatible.
As a matter of fact, right after the last elections, the same socialist party (PSOE) regained the majority and is in power right now.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Zactly. Communism can't function without totalitarianism.
They keyword there is function. Communist ideology is not the best when it comes to functioning. My point is more centered on consent. If one doesn't consent ideologies which one does not agree with, the differences between one and Osama BL become a bit smaller. One being a person or a whole government is all the same.
 

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I know there have been others but since Spain is where I am from and the case I know better I'll set it as an example.
See Elecciones generales españolas de 1982 - Wikipedia, la enciclopedia libre

Spain had a majority socialist party in government from 1982 to 1994 ( I might be off on the dates by a year or so ). I'm not saying that they did a good job or not. Just saying that democracy and leftist parties are not incompatible.
As a matter of fact, right after the last elections, the same socialist party (PSOE) regained the majority and is in power right now.
Communists were 4% in that. Unlike socialism (another HUGE mistake) communism is generally not reversible without a lot of folks getting killed.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
In any case. My point is freedom of ideology cannot be limited to a certain group of ideologies. If even one person is not free to choose, then is not freedom anymore. Whether you limit it to communist idelogy only, or facist ones only, or even allowing just the favored ones, it's all the same.
 

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are you implying that socialism is easier to reverse than communism?
Generally once a Communist party gains power, they tend to be the only option on the next ballot. I suppose it depends how far left on the scale we are talking about... Canada's NDP (socialist) holds several seats in parliament, but they are really not that radically different than the Liberal or Conservative parties. We could give them a government and take it away.

In any case. My point is freedom of ideology cannot be limited to a certain group of ideologies. If even one person is not free to choose, then is not freedom anymore. Whether you limit it to communist idelogy only, or facist ones only, or even allowing just the favored ones, it's all the same.

I agree. I think Sheep was just picking a nit (and I agree with him) saying that communism seems to be a 1-way ticket.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Generally once a Communist party gains power, they tend to be the only option on the next ballot. I suppose it depends how far left on the scale we are talking about... Canada's NDP (socialist) holds several seats in parliament, but they are really not that radically different than the Liberal or Conservative parties. We could give them a government and take it away.




I agree. I think Sheep was just picking a nit (and I agree with him) saying that communism seems to be a 1-way ticket.
"Generally" I agree with you both that in some cases when a country goes down that path, to back out of it, suffering is unavoidable. Then again, I still think it's the dictatorship part of it, the imposing character, that's causing it. When a left government reaches office democratically, usually it gets out of it the same way.
Agreed there might be cases where when reached peacefully it might have turned otherwise down the road.
 

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The debate is more semantic than anything else. I can only think of one country that is not at all socialist, and that's Somalia, where there is no government to speak of. The United States has many socialist aspects, including government programs for retirement (Social Security), Medical care, housing for the poor, crop subsidies, transportation, and many others. Most European countries are considerably more socialist than the US.

There has never actually been a communist government the way Marx envisioned, as communism is also anarchy. So called "Communist" governments are only communist in name, indeed all are military dictatorships in disguise.

No one really wants a "pure" capitalist democracy, in a way that's what they have in Somalia. No taxes, no government, you get whatever money will buy. I doubt anyone wants a European style socialist system either, as those work poorly and are beginning to break down. What we want is something in the middle, and in fact the gradations we argue so vehemently are ridiculously small.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
The debate is more semantic than anything else. I can only think of one country that is not at all socialist, and that's Somalia, where there is no government to speak of. The United States has many socialist aspects, including government programs for retirement (Social Security), Medical care, housing for the poor, crop subsidies, transportation, and many others. Most European countries are considerably more socialist than the US.

There has never actually been a communist government the way Marx envisioned, as communism is also anarchy. So called "Communist" governments are only communist in name, indeed all are military dictatorships in disguise.

No one really wants a "pure" capitalist democracy, in a way that's what they have in Somalia. No taxes, no government, you get whatever money will buy. I doubt anyone wants a European style socialist system either, as those work poorly and are beginning to break down. What we want is something in the middle, and in fact the gradations we argue so vehemently are ridiculously small.
Agreed.
 

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The problem with communism and, to a lesser extent socialism, is not the ideology. It's the fact that it's run by people.

People are the problem in every form of government.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
The problem with communism and, to a lesser extent socialism, is not the ideology. It's the fact that it's run by people.

People are the problem in every form of government.
Very true.

Thus SheepOfBlue for president in '08 the most benevolent tyrant you can elect :bowtome:
Sorry, I "vote for Pedro". :p
 
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