(on the 94th Anniversary of Russian Socialist Revolution, 1917)
"Once upon a time there was an evil dwarfish boy called Karl Marx. He had a very low self-esteem. While other boys were desperate to grow up, meet girls and become rich, evil Karl was engaged in the devilish schemes. He devised a system of thinking which proclaimed that having a lot of good toys was bad for an individual. Instead, he argued everyone should have only a part of the toy but not the whole toy. Like one person should have a head of the GI Joe, another one-a leg, etc. Then, he argued, in order to make the whole toy people would have to cooperate and thus -- help each other. During his life evil Karl promoted that idea with vigor. He called it socialism and communism. After he died another evil boy Vladimir Lenin embraced his legacy That Lenin fellow also was small and dwarfish. He also had an evil brother who tried to kill the Russian Tsar. He gathered a lot of people around him; they eventually took power in Russia and proceeded to destroy toys and distribute the components. They did it cruelly and mercilessly. People who wanted to keep their toys were killed in big numbers. Lenin and those who came after him in Russia created a country in which people were very unhappy because none had a full toy to play with. Only high-level communists had good toys they smuggled from abroad. Lenin and his people unleashed their Flying Monkeys on anyone who wanted his own, individual toy. We here in the Free World could not tolerate such misfortune of the Russian people. We tried several times to destroy them by wars, once even we created a monster-man names Hitler to fight them but all in vain; Russian people apparently were too brainwashed by the promise of unlimited amount of toys for everybody. Then eventually the wars took the tall and our prosperity and abundance of toys conveyed a message to them. They abandoned socialism and now they enjoy the same kind of freedoms we here take for granted.'
The parody fairytale above is actually a rather precise representation of the garbage filling the head of an average American when it comes to a historical event of Russian Revolution. For some strange reason the evil dwarfish boys like Dick, GW, GHW or Carl R, wicked witches like Hillary or Condi or Flying Monkeys of the Pentagon are not in the light of the US fairytale storytellers. Otherwise poor average Joe would get nuts very quickly. Let them drink Kool- Aid.
But we are adults. We can listen to the Ca Ira song of the 1793 when Edith Piaf sings now, "All Aristocrats will hang on the lanterns.' France embraced its revolution big time. In 1860s Victor Hugo, the famous French writer wrote a novel "Year 93' about Y1793 and the events in the Revolutionary France. We here in the US prefer the "Les Miserables'. It is because we here in the US like to help people only if they are miserable. That is we want first them to become miserable and then- help them. What we don't like at all are people who either do not care for us or are equal to us. French Revolution in 1793 proclaimed the equality of all and thus we do not recognize that it took place. Those were some other evil boys with low self- esteem who killed their king, etc. Shame on them.
Hugo painted a glorious picture of the horrors and feats. In his book the Revolutionary France was a place of the giants. In the fierce struggle between progress and regression, between light and darkness, revolutionaries were national patriots who preserved France as a country and directed it to the new era of enlightenment. Hugo himself was a son of Revolution; his father was a Republican general and his mother was from the pro- royalist noble family. In the burning flames of the Republic the spirit of France revived itself and for a long time became the leader of the free thought in Europe. Hugo was the first who took from history not ashes but fire. Through him France embraced its contradictory past and now the July 14th, the day of the storming of Bastille is the national holiday in France and La Marseillaise is the country's national anthem.
Russian Socialist Revolution took place in 1917 and it was a crucial event of the 20th Century. It defined the next 83 years. Through the most powerful and bloody push, Russia, the last feudal Empire was transferred into the technologically advanced civilization. As always in history you cannot call it a good path or a bad path, a path to glory or a path to happiness. You can call it a path to human progress. And progress it was; an average child of Russian Revolution, the one who fought and overcame Hitler -- that person as a human personality was and is by an order of magnitude a more developed human being than an average Joe, the Sixpack or an average German or and average Englishman, etc. Russian revolution not only destroyed an old economic system- it destroyed spiritual slavery. Forever the Russian people will remember the first dignified words of their fathers, 'We are not slaves. Slaves are not us.'
We here talk a lot about freedom and liberty. We wave flags and make noises. But when the upper class wants to take those away--they steal them from us and promise safety, and we comply. We even surrender those voluntarily. The history of the 20th Century is the history of shame. Free people of the Free world- we never prevented massacres and atrocities, we complied with so many crimes against Humanity that we ourselves lost the count. It is the story of surrender at least so far.
Russians never surrendered. Even when dictatorship usurped the power of Revolution and lasted for 30 years, even when people took power back when dictator died- it was Revolution in their hearts that did it. They were slaves no more. We here should study hard and learn how people could defend their dignity and liberty against the odds so overwhelming that even a fraction of those could devastate anyone of us without mercy. Instead of making puppyish squeals about socialism we here should take from history its fire and apply it to help us become stronger. Revolutions made people strong, they raised the passions of the nations and forever promoted the dignity of the human spirit. I always laugh when I hear our liberals starting their conversations with the hysterical statements like " I am not a socialist', or "I don't approve Marx.'. Revolution as an event had earned the right to choose people who should admire it. It had not chosen you, sorry, my pathetic, shallow liberal brother.
Dignity is such an elusive thing. I wrote a lot about the bloody face of Revolution. I wrote about Revolution killing its children, about the eternal question Gracchus Babeuf asked in his final letter to French directors, "Was it worth it?' Was it worth it to massacre people? Was it worth it to take hostages? Was it worth it to burn villages? Was it worth it to put the abstract idea before the real human life?' Of course not! Of course, every Revolution has injustice and atrocities imprinted onto it. So what, forget it? Pretend it never happened? Not a chance.
Oh, how we want to forget. We love to forget, our everyday activity. We forget how we are humiliated, how we are bought and sold, how we lie, how we cheat, how cruel we are to people and animals. Everyday average person desperately wants to forget that he/she lost that very dignity the Revolution provided Without that dignity it is much easier to think about thyself as similar in misery to the ones who made the Revolution. Who were they? Murderers and plunderers, evil boys with low self-esteem. Just like a miserable being I am, right? No biggie.
Oh, biggie indeed. Pushkin said,' No, you fools. The great man is not as malicious as you are; he is maybe malicious but differently, not like you.'
Those who made revolutions were humans and they were anything you want. But honest effort counts. Greatness comes with decisions, sometimes tragic, sometimes totally wrong, but honest. We despise Hitler forever not because of his unbelievable cruelty but because first and foremost he was a liar and he knew it. Racial theory of his NEVER had any chance to make anyone happy but his psychopathic persona. He was a coward, a low personality and a cheat and that was the one and only reason to deny him even a shadow of any greatness whatever a perverted kind of sense it can be.
Honesty and courage always accompanied every true Revolution and those two were the ones giving birth to its primary child-Dignity. Dignity made it possible for us to be free, to ask questions, to debate, to argue, to even decline the Revolution itself. Dignity excludes shallowness and malice. Yes, a dignified person can totally reject a Revolution but a dignified person will never mock it and never forget. That dignified person will always respect the fire within. We all are the children of the Great Russian Revolution; those of us that feel forever responsible for the injustice in the world. When we hear the OWS and see our young on the streets we see the spirit of the Revolutionary dignity once again and once again we understand that the bankers, they remember too; their generational memory remembers the Ca Ira on the molecular level. They are still afraid of the Year 93 and Year 1917. They are still afraid, that accounts for something.
We are surrounded by a legion of little, nasty demons whose sole purpose is to corrupt us. They, the demons from the shallow Hell would like to convince us that that we, our little cowardly existence is in fact the pillar of the Universe. They barrage us with flattery. They praise us for not smoking or running a mile a day. They lower the standards so low that most of us live our lives as spoiled brats. And then we see the distant fire of the Revolution and we shiver from fear. That's what they had achieved. They mock the greatness and laugh at great events. They let idiots like Sarah Palin or Newt Gingrich use the great words like Revolution. They laugh their ears off at us, stupid , shallow, little brats who cling to their toys and hate our own interests. It is a Satanic dance macabre when a pathetic loser in his late 40s, an insurance agent, howls about "vices of socialism' and proclaims the virtues of capitalistic society while his house is foreclosed. That's what the demons do to us on our retainer and by our permission. That's what fear of greatness does to us when we surrender our dignity.
Revolution does not care if you like it or not; it took place, live with it. If you are a real person you acknowledge it, respect it as a planetary event and take the fire it offers into your heart to become a more dignified person. It is not easy. It is a tough call, But it is the only way to make a next step in progress. That's the only way to become a part of the solution. With dignity, no matter what the cost.