Category Archives: NE Asia

Japanese Would Rather Freeze than Be Impolite

In Japan, you leave a door open, and after a bit, people will start saying things like, “My, it certainly is cold in here, isn’t it?…Why is it so cold?…etc.” They may look at you pointedly when they say this. You are supposed to get the hint and go look at the door and figure out if you left it open or not.  They are so damn polite that they would rather sit in the cold than ask you to close the door!

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Filed under Asia, Asians, Culture, Japan, Japanese, NE Asia, Northeast Asians, Race/Ethnicity, Regional

What Is Capitalism? What is Socialism? A Look at Some Noncapitalist Modes of Development

Mayur: I am all against uninhibited and all pervasive capitalism. Of course,the government enterprises should have an active role to play in the economy which should, however, vary from time to time. All the citizens should have access to the barest essentials, but strictly on need basis. Besides, I am all for giving teeth to the working class.

But communism, in my opinion, is a bit unnerving. In the societies which are quite addicted to liberty, people will find it unbearable to have the government’s boot on their throat everywhere,all the time. Capitalism existing side by side with socialism, that’s what I advocate. Wealth distribution and wealth creation both are important. There has to be a good incentive to create wealth, and, the economic inequalities have to be made tolerable. Enterprise, prosperity, and, the general well being of the masses. Something for everybody.

Yes this is what I want as a socialist.

To me socialism just means anything less than totally unregulated capitalism.

Socialists are people who are willing to limit the profits of the capitalists. Of course capitalists are people who believe in no limits their profits.So anyone who believes in limiting the profits of capital is anti-capitalist in a sense. Those people who want to let a market exist but to limit the profits of capital are called socialists.

Socialists also believe in redistribution. This means taking or even stealing money from the rich to give to the middle classes, working classes and the poor. This is antithetical to all models of capitalism. All models of capitalism call that theft.

Really what I am talking about here is social democracy.

Also, you can have workers running enterprises for themselves and keeping the profits. This is socialism to me.

Socialism to me is compatible for the profit motive. Capitalism to me is exploitation. No exploitation, no capitalism. Just because someone makes a profit, they are not necessarily capitalists.

One man businesses are not capitalist. This is simply a worker selling his labor power on the labor market to other workers. Labor markets are compatible with socialism as is single proprietorships.

The Cooperative Mode is a noncapitalist mode.

Actually the Japanese model, which is similar to the economics of Nazi Germany or National Socialism, is also a noncapitalist model.

My credit union is owned by the its consumers. That is a noncapitalist mode of development.

Many nonprofits do extremely well and hire many workers. That is a noncapitalist mode of development.

This thing that some call State Capitalism is actually a noncapitalist mode of development. Some call Russia State Capitalism.

The Chinese model is also a noncapitalist mode of development. This has also been called a form of State Capitalism.

City and town operated businesses can often be run very well especially if they compete against other cities and towns. This is the Chinese model. This is a noncapitalist mode of development.

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Filed under Asia, Capitalism, China, Economics, Eurasia, Government, Japan, Labor, Left, Marxism, Regional, Russia, Socialism

The Lie of the 20 (or 40, or 60, or 80, or 110) Million: How Many People Did Stalin Kill?

Here.

In 1991, after the Soviet archives were opened, a wild debate raged in the journals for many years. The subject of the debate was how many people did Joseph Stalin kill. Most people assume that Joseph Stalin killed 20 million people at the very least. That figure is considered unassailable. Other figures of 40-60 million are considered to also be possible.

The fascist hero and traitor Solzhenitsyn said that Stalin killed 110 million people. We have little data about how many were killed by early Bolsheviks in peacetime. Much of their time was spent in a brutal Civil War and there were many deaths associated with that. There was also a brutal famine that occurred in the context of war. But all indications are that the Leninists were not responsible for a lot of deaths. I would be surprised if they killed 100,000 people in 10 years. From 1926-1953, we have readily accessible data however.

                     Deaths

Executions           900,000

Anti-Kulak Campaign  400,000

Gulag                1,200,000

Total                2,500,000

I am leaving out deaths during wartime here, as we should not be counting those. However, there were some serious population transfers during World War which ended about 10 years later. The death tolls from these transfers were very high. Populations in the Baltics, Crimean Tatars, Chechens, Ingush and other Caucasian people were transferred, sometimes en masse, to gulags in Siberia. Death tolls were extremely high. I am not sure whether to include these totals, so I am leaving them out. Anyway, I do not have a good source for the deaths.

Surely there were executions and deaths in the gulags after 1943, but after Stalin died, the system was very much loosened up under Khrushchev and certainly under his followers. I doubt once again if there were 100,000 people killed between 1953-1989, a 36 year period.

I am also leaving off deaths due to famines because there is no evidence that these famines were artificially engineered. The most famous fake famine of all, the fake Holodomor, simply never even happened. What I mean was, yes, there was a famine, and many people died – 5.4 million in fact. But those deaths were not all in the Ukraine. Many died in the cities and 1 million died in Siberia. The death toll was higher in the fanatically pro-Stalin Volga than it was in Western Ukraine.

Even in Ukraine, the deaths were as high in the pro-Stalin East as in the anti-USSR nationalist West and Center. There is simply no evidence whatsoever that any “terror famine” occurred at all. There was simply a famine that occurred for a variety of causes, mostly a simple harvest collapse. Most died of disease instead of starvation. Much of the death toll was due to the kulaks.

The kulaks killed 50% of the livestock in the USSR to keep them from being turned over to the state. In the famine year, wheat fields were torched all over the Ukraine. Harvests were piled in the fields and left out to be rained on until they spoiled. Much of the crop failure was due to these dumbasses setting their fields on fire or piling harvests in the rain to spoil. They destroyed all their food crops, and then they sat around and said, “We ain’t got no food!” Duh. Reminds me of the situation in Zimbabwe when the Blacks destroyed all the White farms and drove the farmers out of the country and then all the Blacks sat around and said, “Whoa! We ain’t gots no food! Someone please gibs us some food! We hungry!”

There was an armed revolution in the Ukraine with 20-30 armed attacks per day. Collective farms were attacked and set on fire. Workers in the collective farms would be shot and the women would be raped. This went on all through the years around the famine. The state crackdown was very brutal and that is why I listed 400,000 deaths during this time. If you want to count those 400,000 as “Holodomor” deaths, be my guest. But it ain’t no 6 million and there was no terror famine.

Look, if anti-Communists want to go on and on about Stalin killing 2 1/2 million people, please knock yourselves out. But they’ll never do that because it’s not sensational enough. You say the phrase “20 million killed in Communism” and everyone sits up and takes notice. You say Stalin killed 2 million and most will yawn and ask, “That’s all?” and turn back to the TV show.

This crap is all about propaganda. It’s not about real history or social science of any of that. It’s about lying for political purposes, which is what most of modern history is anyway.

How shameful that is.

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Filed under Agricutlure, Asia, Chechens, Death, Eurasia, Europeans, Health, History, Left, Livestock Production, Marxism, Modern, NE Asia, Near Easterners, Nutrition, Politics, Race/Ethnicity, Regional, Russia, Siberia, Ukraine, USSR, War

External Relations of Japanese and Apache

Jason Voorhees: YEE – There is some similarity between the language of an Apache and that of the Japanese for example.

Yee: That seems far fetched. My ancestors moved from Central China, but I can’t understand any of their dialect now. Language is easy to lose

Actually this is not correct. Apache does have external relations in the new Yenisien-Na Dene family (already under fierce attack by splitters), and in a larger sense to Chinese but not Japanese. But there is no similarity whatsoever between Japanese and Apache, other than that probably all human languages are related at some distant level. There is no clear or obvious relationship between Japanese (really Japonic) and any other language. Japanese is not one language. It is a group of languages called Japonic. Most of the Japonic languages are spoken the Ryukyu Islands (Okinawa), where there are 5-6 separate languages spoken. These languages still have many speakers, but they are in very bad shape as the Japanese have been waging war on them for some time now. Most of the speakers are middle aged or older and transmission to the young is at a low level.

However, it is clear to me that Japanese does have external relations. The most obvious external relation would be with Korean. Even some of the hardest-core anti-Altaicists agree that there is a good chance that Korean and Japanese are related. Looking at the larger picture, Japanese and Korean are both related to Turkic, Tungusic and Mongolic in a superfamily called Altaic. Mainstream linguistics has refused to accept Altaic although the evidence for its existence is striking.

The evidence for the existence of Altaic is just as good as the evidence for Austroasiatic,l and that is a universally accepted family. Worse, people who believe in Altaic are attacked and ridiculed mercilessly to the point where if you believe in it,  you might actually have a hard time getting a professorship.

Of course, Altaicists are accused of being anti-scientific because “science” has not yet shown that there is any relationship. Adults who think like this are children. Science doesn’t know everything and science is flat out wrong about countless things. That is because many theories are simply true that are presently rejected by science due to so-called lack of evidence.

Having to go ask Mommy Science whether everything you encounter in the world is true or not is like what a child does. A child is always running up to Mommy asking is it is true that so and so etc etc. Mommy says yes or no and the kid is satisfied. The are adults who are still tied to their mothers apron strings who never learned to differentiate themselves as mature individuals. Hence they have to run the Mommy Science and ask whether something is true or not instead of sitting down and looking at the evidence and deciding for yourself.

Not all things that are true have been accepted by science. If you are going to learn anything in life, it should be that right there. Time to cut the apron strings, babies.

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Filed under Altaic, Asia, Austro-Asiatic, Dene-Yenisien, Japan, Japanese, Japonic, Korean language, Language Families, Linguistics, Na-Dene, NE Asia, Regional, Science, Sociolinguistics, Tungusic, Turkic

“Iran: Socialism’s Ignored Success Story,” by Ramin Mazaheri

Iran: Socialism’s Ignored Success Story

May 23, 2017

by Ramin Mazaheri

Iran just completed their presidential election, but this article will not discuss the candidates, the result or the political consequences.

I work for Iran’s Press TV, which essentially makes me a civil servant, and I think it is correct for me to not reveal who I voted for in order to preserve my independence within the government. I’m quite happy to work for “the people” instead of “a person” – as in private media – and I will support which ever candidate the people choose.

Why will I support Iran’s government, whoever is in charge? Truly, it is not for my paycheck.

I support Iran because I support socialism where ever I can find it, and Iran has socialism in abundance.

Iranian Socialism has been so successful at redistributing wealth to the average person; has safeguarded the nation’s security despite being ringed by US military bases and repeated threats; has grown the economy despite an international blockade; has produced a foreign policy motivated on political principles; and has fought against the divisive identity politics which undermine human solidarity.

I have actually seen Iran over the decades, unlike 99% of the journalists who claim to understand Iran, so you can’t dissuade me.

And I’m not even going to try to persuade you. This is not that article, either.

This article is to lay out for left-wing readers and supporters of socialism what should be crystal clear: Iran is a socialist nation. Even more than that: Iran is a socialist success story.

Iran, like all nations, has had its unique developmental history; of course we have been reading Marx just as long as anyone else, as well.

But the most convincing and simplest way I can put it to non-Iranians is this: Europe came to socialism through industrialization, theory and war, but Iran came to socialism through its religious and moral beliefs. The ends are the same, and that is all that should matter to anyone who is truly trying to promote socialism for the benefits it brings to the average person.

The Problem Is Not Us, It Is You

I repeat: The problem is not us, it is you…when it comes to looking at Iran’s contributions to socialism.

I believe that around 99% of Westerners have no idea at all what Iran is really like. Unfortunately, this total ignorance about Iran and the Muslim world is the historical norm in the West.

The greatest contribution of Middle East scholar Edward Said was that his book, “Orientalism”, definitively proved through historical scholarship that the West has never, ever, ever been favorable towards the Muslim world.

Not in the 8th century, when Muslims were occupiers of the Iberian Peninsula, not in the following centuries when Islam was an ideological competitor to Christianity; not in the 15th century, when the Ottoman Empire occupied the Balkans; not in the 19th century, when the Europeans occupied the Middle East & North Africa; not in 1916, when they redrew the borders for the West’s benefit; not in 1945, when they bombed countries like Syria which had fought on their side against the Germans and the Italians; not in the 1960’s, when their reaction to independence was neocolonialism; not in 1979, when they created the forerunner of the Taliban; not during 2 wars in Iraq, a war in Syria today, etc.

Said’s point was: Never has the West viewed or treated the Muslim world as equals, much less intellectual equals.

Given this history, why should us Iranians expect the reality of our high-achieving modernity to be accepted and admired?

LOL, believe me, I am over it! I write this to enlighten you, not me! I humbly hope that it works.

I will address the elephant in the room, and quickly: Yes, I assume that a large part of this prejudice is religious. Some Christians cannot accept that Islam promotes the most recent prophet of the monotheism which they both share.

Such religious prejudices are not my problem, and they do not blind my analysis of 2017 Iran.

No socialist believes in a “clash of civilizations” or “religious war”, anyway.

My point is not to criticize Europe for a lack of brotherhood with their fellow Abrahamic religion: My point is to criticize them in 2017 because most Westerners believe that that even the most leftist Iranian cannot even qualify as merely a “conservative social democrat”!

Can There Never Be a Muslim “Democrat” or an Iranian “Republican”?

The proof of this bias is the decades of Western support for the oppression of the Muslim Brotherhood, the Iranian Revolution and any Muslim attempt to allow their religion into their politics. This is even though Christian Democratic parties governed Europe for decades after WWII, and it is absurd to think that the Christian dogma is not upheld and promoted in European politics today.

So, if Iranians cannot even be allowed to fulfill 19th century notions, why would the West accept that 2017 Iran can be even more truly leftist than the merely centrist ideology of European social democracy?

Of course, the average European cannot accept this, and this is why Western Socialists are aghast at my idea that Iran is an “ignored Socialist success story”.

The radical left of European Socialism, which seeks to destroy organized religion, is especially aghast, but they are a tiny minority and on the way out, thankfully. They do not realize that they have already been drastically tempered, if not ousted, in the still-Socialist countries they purportedly admire: Cuba is full of Santeria and Pope pictures, yin-yangy Confucianism is being promoted in China, etc.

But these Western radicals are a minority who simply cannot accept that spirituality cannot be rubbed out, largely because they see it as a choice or a social conditioning instead of a part of many people’s intrinsic nature (if not theirs). A modern Socialist must accept that this fight has already been fought and decided. The capitalists certainly advance as we chase our tails….

Even if leftist detractors can get past religion, they immediately will talk about Iran’s human rights faults.

I respond: Yawn yawn yawn African-Americans fill US jails; Muslims fill France’s jails; this is the centenary of the British-orchestrated Persian Famine, which killed 8-10 million people and actually made Iran the biggest victim of WWI, that is just one Western/capitalist inspired famine/death/human rights violation yawn yawn yawn.

I am not here to say Iran is perfect – only God can be – I am saying that Iran is absolutely no worse than the West. It is an undeniable fact that the current Islamic Republic of Iran has far less blood on its hands than most – and Iran has not invaded a country in 300 years!

Religion, human rights – these are all classic diversions from the facts presented against socialist societies, and Iran certainly is one.

Iran Checks All the Boxes as a Socialist Nation and as Revolutionary Socialist

What are the key components of socialism? Let’s clarify our terms.

The first is leadership by an avant-garde party committed to defending the revolution: Iran certainly has this, and it crosses over Principlist/Reformist party lines.

The second is central planning of the economy: Whoever had won, they would be largely implementing the 6th Five-year plan (2016-2021). And there is also the “Resistance Economy” approach promoted by many, which is certainly anti-globalization.

The third is control over the media: This is mixed – I would say Iran does not really have this in the traditionally Socialist sense. Cuba has no private media, for example, while Iran has dozens of private newspapers and innumerable TV satellites. But Iran does have limitations, so let’s check this box.

The fourth is support for foreign liberation movements: When the history of Palestinian liberation is finally written, just as a now-free South Africa thanks Cuba for sending troops to Angola, will not Palestinians do the same for Iran’s decades of support? The same with Lebanon and now Syria, correct?

The fifth is democratically devolving as much democracy as possible in order to empower the average person: There is no doubt that Iran is the most vibrant democracy in the Middle East, and by a huge margin. The difference between Iran’s social-democratic procedures and guarantees in 2017 when compared with 1978 is obviously laughable. I write this from Paris, a nation in an 18-month state of emergency with no end in sight….

If your country has these five crucial components: Congratulations! You are in a socialist country!

A little bit more on each for the naysayers….

An Avant-Garde Party

Iran is a one-party system – that party defends the 1979 Revolution. China is a one-party system – promoting Chinese communism. Many would say that the US is a one-party system – promoting imperialist capitalism.

The difference between Iran & China and the US is that in the former their one-party systems are formalized, explicit and well-known; in the US it is informal, but just as strong, and maybe even stronger.

I don’t think this needs much further explanation but, for example, you cannot propose to end the Iranian Revolution and run for office. In France a presidential candidate in their recent election (Jean-Luc Melenchon) won 20% of the first-round vote by proposing to abolish France’s current 5th Republic.

Like all socialist countries, Iran is criticized for not having democracy but they do: it is simply within their own particular structure. Just as in the USSR, there was lively debate about how to advance their own system – should we following the right-wing model of socialism of Bukharin/Khrushchev or the left-wing model socialism of Lenin/Trotsky? – but there was no debate about deviating from their chosen national system, i.e. communism. When they did allow such debates under Gorbachev, Soviet Socialism was almost immediately subverted by capitalist reactionaries and consigned to oblivion.

Again, please examine the repression of communism in the US, South Korea, Greece, Italy, Chile, etc. for historical examples of capitalist “one-party systems”, which are definitely NOT avant-garde and promoting socialism….

The idea that Iran has no avant-garde party but is some sort of totalitarian structure governed by the Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei is only expressed by those who are supremely ignorant about Iran. For the second presidential election in a row Hassan Rouhani won despite not seeming to be Khamenei’s preferred candidate, after all.

Central Planning of the Economy

I think I can illustrate Iran’s state of economic socialism with this anecdote: Back in 2013 all 8 presidential candidates were pushing for more privatization…not to promote capitalism, but because everything has already been nationalized for so long, LOL!

So Iran has already done the nationalizing, and maybe they need to do more? However, socialist countries have increasingly agreed that some revenue-producing businesses are needed to meet some of the basic needs of their people: North Korea has the Kaesong Industrial area, Cuba’s Port Mariel is giving some space to completely foreign-owned businesses, Vietnam and China have plenty of state-run capitalist enterprises, etc. The reality is that even producing things as simple as soap need some expertise, and very often only capitalist corporations can have that expertise.

That’s why the Iranian government went on a spending spree in 2016, but it was decidedly not your typical capitalism. (I do not want to appear to credit only the Rouhani administration because economic policy is produced by the entire government in 5-year development plans, as already noted.)

Iran was feted like a king in places like France and Italy because they were prepared to spend dozens of billions of euros. But what pleased me was how Iran spent: They demanded equal partnerships, joint ventures and technology transfers.

These are the ways in which foreign investment can be mutually beneficial and not exploitative – this was good for France too. I am not a dogmatic person who is absolutely against all capitalism, but I am against all exploitative capitalism.

My point is: It was a socialist spending spree, not a capitalist one. Iran did not just give money away; they did not waste money on vanity projects; this was not one billionaire dealing with another for their own benefit; they invested in Iran via long-term central planning, i.e. the socialist view of economic management.

This is not like France’s ruling “Socialist Party” recently selling off national industrial jewel Alstom to the United States’ General Electric: The French people got nothing for that. That was capitalism; that was globalization

Iran is not in favor of globalization – they are not even a member of the World Trade Organization, unlike 164 other countries. Some will say this is solely due to the opposition of the United States, but it is not: As many in Iran said during the election: membership in the WTO is against Iran’s principles…and these are socialist principles regarding the economy – there is nothing about the WTO in the Koran.

Control over the Media

It’s true you can’t have Charlie Hebdo in Iran – hardly a major loss –but Iran is certainly no Cuba.

Iran’s refusal to crack down on TV satellites which permit reactionary, anti-revolutionary channels like BBC Persian and VOA Persian (UK and US government-funded respectively) appears to be a dangerous fire which Havana will not tolerate. This tolerance does give Iran “human rights” credibility with the West – well it doesn’t, but it should!

I would suggest that Iran is simply confident that foreign propaganda cannot overwhelm the obvious successes of the 1979 Revolution. I imagine that Cuba feels that they cannot take chances, being just 100 kilometers from the USA.

Of course, Cubans simply laugh at Western propaganda channels like the US government’s pathetic Radio Marti. Cubans are supremely intelligent politically and, after all, their education programs are decades older than Iran’s.

Iran, like Cuba and China, bans pornography. I note that such respect for sexuality and for women is a very basic tenet of Socialism. If your utopia includes unfettered access to porn I suggest that you are a libertarian, and not a socialist.

I remind again that the media glasnost implemented by Gorbachev was a major driver in the catastrophic implosion of the Russian Revolution. To privatize media means, necessarily, that you are giving those few people rich enough to actually start newspapers the chance to promote their obviously capitalist worldviews.

I, for one, am not about to cry over the lack of published capitalist, imperialist, sexist, racist, regressive anti-revolutionary nonsense, and neither are most Iranians. As sad as the Dutch may be about it – Iran is not Amsterdam!

Support of Foreign Liberation Movements

Some will say that Palestine is just a “distraction” from Iran’s own problems. Nonsense – this is a point of pride to all Iranians. This is a point of admiration for Iran from the entire Muslim world, just as it is a negative point for much of the Western world.

This is another way Iran is revolutionary Socialist country: they support oppressed countries on the basis of ideology. Perhaps Iran is not the “Mecca of Revolutionaries” which Algeria was in the 1960’s, but let’s agree that the rate and scope of revolutionary movements worldwide are at a much lower level today, sadly.

Russia may support Syria, for example, but it appears more for Moscow’s self-interest and the idea of national sovereignty – which is the idea of national self-interest – rather than a moral-based ideology.

Call Iran the same as Russia – no insult there – but you cannot deny that Iran supports Palestine for reasons which are clearly to the detriment of their own success, i.e., they do it out of solidarity and morality. Were Iran to recognize Israel they would surely have the international dogs called off them…but Iran is a revolutionary Socialist society, as you are hopefully agreeing with by now.

Iran is also an anti-racist society, like all modern socialist societies.

They constitutionally protect minorities, with parliamentary seats for Armenians, Assyrians, Christians and Jews, despite their small numbers. Iran may not promote them, but their tolerance of local languages like Azeri and Kurdish far exceeds that of many minorities in Western Europe. Iran accommodates the 5th-largest number of refugees in the world, while French authorities put up gates and even ‘’anti-migrant boulders’’ to deny refugees even the barest shelter.

When it comes to religion they are extremely tolerant of ancient Iranian Zoroastrianism and all of the pre-Prophet Muhammad Abrahamic religions. Any religion after Prophet Muhammad? Well…it is an “Islamic” Revolution, after all.

This is perhaps a pedantic point but an important one on a verbal, Foucauldian level: Has there been any “revolution” in the world since WWI which was not “socialist”? I can’t think of any, because without a socialism component it cannot be a revolution – it can only be a continuation of the capitalist/feudalist/bourgeois status quo, or a military coup.

Empowering People

The two fundamental tenets of socialism are redistribution of wealth and empowering the average person so that they can reach their full potential. Dismantling the social roadblocks thrown up by capitalism against the non-wealthy has clearly been a major goal of the Islamic Revolution, and I can quite easily prove it has been achieved with a tremendous amount of real-world success.

Since 1990 – when the West’s attack dog of Iraq was beaten off – no country’s Human Development Index has improved more than Iran’s, with the lone exception of South Korea.

Everyone should take notice, especially Socialists, as it is we anti-capitalists who prize human development – not economic development – above all.

That’s why I’m going to leave the Human Development Index as the only proof of success. For me, I have so many other econometrics, anecdotes and personal reflections to prove that Iran has succeeded in creating a new, better, modern society that to do so is quite boring.

Bottom line: It is obvious that I do not have to make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear. Despite the tremendous amount of opposition, violence and propaganda, Iran has advanced the most in the past 3+ decades.

I say “the most” because, unlike South Korea, Iran has done this without 30,000 US troops currently on its soil; it was not preceded by decades of brutal dictatorship which slaughtered hundreds of thousands of people (mainly leftists); and they did not collaborate with the Americans in the division of their nation which currently causes the greatest possibility of thermonuclear war.

Iran didn’t get to #1 as many others did: by capitalism and imperialism.

Iran’s recent election had a 73% voter turnout rate, ranking it #12 in the world. Unlike many of these other 11 countries, Iran does not compel citizens to vote. There is obviously tremendous support for the Iranian system from the Iranian people because…they are not blind to success, I would say!

The hardest thing to get people to do when it comes to socialism (or Iran) is to think realistically: Nobody can achieve “perfect” socialism. No country has 100% voter turnout. No country has zero human rights violations.

But for Iran you have add on another layer of misconception: Many of the “restrictions” in Iranian society predate 1979 by centuries: women were largely wearing the hejab before then; unmarried people, especially young women, also lived at home before 1979; alcohol could send you to prison then and now.

My point is: Iran is a culturally conservative nation, and it was like that long, long before 1979. You will have to simply trust me that Iranians don’t need a government to make them want to live in a society which appears conservative to modern Western standards.

Again, Iran is not Amsterdam, LOL! Maybe you can talk about the royal court in Shiraz in the 14th century as being a hotbed of drunken poetic reveling, but this is does not reflect the reality of life for the average person.

Only an Iranian will agree quickly with this statement and move on: Take away the 1979 Revolution and you would still have many of the same rules in place – they would just be enforced informally.

I will, lastly, put it this way: Take away the mullahs, and you still have to deal with my grandmother!!!!!

But to believe that the government has not empowered people since 1979…well, back then the average woman had 7 children, was illiterate 70% of the time, and the UN was not calling its health care system “excellent”.

Today, the birthrate is 1.7 children per woman, the overall literacy rate is 93% and the right-wing Washington DC-based think-tank the Brookings Institution runs dumbfounded articles with headlines like “Are Iranian Women Overeducated?”.

All in 30+ years…and have you thought it was capitalism that did it?!

Socialists Who Ignore Iran Are Not Really Socialists At All

Do you still want to think that Iran is a country solely motivated by religious radicalism and not the ideals of socialism? Well, then I place you on the right and the left, and that is the point of this article.

It is bad enough that the right (capitalists, imperialists) not only co-opt Socialist ideas as their own (social security, Medicare, Medicaid, affirmative action programs, welfare, free schooling, free nurseries, etc.), but it is laughable when the left refuses to see the leftism in Iran because it does not fit with their preconceived, totally inflexible notions.

Any true Socialist/Communist should realize that attacking Iran is doing a capitalist’s job for them.

And how can someone who proclaims to be a “leftist” have the exact same interpretation of Iran as a right-wing capitalist does?

Again, it is simply laughable that Iran is “not” what it really is.

But this is what always happens: Chinese communism “is not really communism”…despite having 1-party rule, a state-run economy, control over the media, support for Vietnam and North Korea, and the 2nd highest HDI improvement from 1970-2010.

North Korean communism is just a “cult of personality”…despite expelling the Japanese, resisting the Americans, maintaining their independence, security and high-level of education. Cuba is just the Castro dictatorship and, again, not communism.

This is all anti-socialist propaganda – for capitalism there can never be ANY “Socialist success story”.

You remain adamant that you do not want to implement all the principles of the Iranian Islamic Revolution in your country?

Fine, it is your country to decide for as you like. Like I wrote, no worries – Iran hasn’t invaded in 300 years and it sure seems like our military is necessarily focused on defense.

But just because you disagree with some aspects of the 1979 Revolution I encourage you not to throw the baby out with the bath water. I remind you that I needed only one fact to prove that Iran has been improving at a rate which is essentially the best in the world over the last 3 decades – how far below Iran does your country rank, hmm?

I write this article because practically no media in the English language will ever pursue the links between Iran and socialism. We leftists know this not just anti-Iran bias, but a much larger anti-Socialist bias.

However, it is truly suicidal to ignore the left-wing successes in Iran because, even if you reject some of them, Iran has clearly found MANY modern solutions to our MANY modern problems: surely some of them can be of use to you, right? Is Iran ALL wrong?

Of course not – only Satan can be all wrong.

Therefore, I advise those fighting against capitalism and imperialism: Please afford Iran a bit more respect and interest than you would afford Satan!

And Now I Take Our Victory lap

I can only laugh at those who say Iran’s revolution has failed!

“Oh really? Who was the puppet that was installed? Who was the king that was restored? What is the name of the popular democratic revolution which replaced the peoples’ one of 1979, because I have not heard of it and I still see many familiar faces from 1979?”

The revolution has succeeded, and I am not sorry to say so.

Not that I care about your opinion – this is for YOUR own benefit: YOU will not win socialism, anti-capitalism or anti-imperialism in your country if you cannot learn from the successes of others.

But sadly, your inability to recognize socialism in Iran imperils all of us, because the people worldwide cannot win in the long term if even like-minded leftists cannot stick together to work against fascism, capitalism and racism.

But Iran, Cuba, China, etc. – we can win enough of these things for ourselves, at least.

We are doing just fine – steady as she goes, eh? All thanks to central planning, as the capitalists veer from crisis to crisis, with the 1% sucking up a greater percentage every time. Our election had huge participation rates, as usual, dwarfing the European cultures who probably want to claim they invented voting, along with everything else. Asia has heard it all before….

For the non-Western readers: I know that the vast majority of you already support Iran. I have talked with too many of you over my life – I know better. I also know that for us “field slaves” we have to give that impression in order to survive, sometimes, or at least to avoid annoyances.

Anyway, many Westerners appear to misunderstand Socialism completely: they don’t realize it is intrinsically a global idea; they think the Franco-German-Russian (European) variety is the only one. More Eurocentrism blinding them to reality, and necessarily limiting them….

But I look across the West and I see nothing but leftist failure after leftist failure: The fall of communism in Russia, the breakup of Yugoslavia, the obvious absorption of “left” parties into the dominant right-wing parties, the rise of austerity, the advance of globalization at the expense of national interests….

So the next time you look at Iran, you should applaud it as a rare socialist success. Iranians will certainly keep living their path of creating modern socialism, Inshallah.

Ramin Mazaheri is the chief correspondent in Paris for Press TV and has lived in France since 2009. He has been a daily newspaper reporter in the US, and has reported from Iran, Cuba, Egypt, Tunisia, South Korea and elsewhere. His work has appeared in various journals, magazines and websites, as well as on radio and television.

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No Conservatives Allowed on This Website!

We have had a few conservatives posting here in the past few days. These are US-style conservatives, which are the worst kind of all. US-style conservatives are absolutely banned from posting here in any way, shape or form.

Conservatism means different things in different countries, so conservatives from much of the rest of the world (except Latin America and the UK) can continue to post. Even Canadian conservatives can continue to post, as I do not mind them. It’s not conservatism itself that is so awful. Almost every country on Earth has people who call themselves conservatives, and there are conservative parties in almost every country on Earth. But being a conservative just about anywhere outside of the Americas is more or less an acceptable position for me. I probably won’t like their politics much, but I could at least look at them and say that this is an opposition I could live with.

US conservatives and their brethren in the UK, Latin America, the Philippines, Nepal and and Indonesia are quite a different beast.

I have to think hard about conservatives in Eastern Europe, especially Estonia, Latvia and the Czech Republic. These fools had such a bad experience with Communism that they went 180 degrees in the other direction. I would have to see the positions of these conservative parties in those countries to see whether they would be OK or not.

Just to give you an example, Vladimir Putin is considered to be a right-winger, and his party United Russia advocates a politics called Russian Conservatism. Looking at the party’s platform, this is not only a conservatism that I could live with but one I might even vote for!

Conservatives in South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, Australia, New Zealand, Burma, Thailand, Cambodia, and most other places in Asia are acceptable. The conservatives in the Stans, Georgia, Ukraine, and Armenia can be rather awful, particularly in the nationalist sense, but I will not ban them.

I dislike Indian conservatives, but I will not ban them.

Conservatives from the Muslim World are all acceptable. In the Muslim World, conservatism just means religious and sometimes nationalist. I can live with that. Even the ones in Iran are orders of magnitude better than the US type.

Conservatives in the Arab World are acceptable. They are mostly just religious people.

Turkish conservatives are awful, but I will not ban them. They are just religious and a particularly awful type of nationalist.

African conservatives are OK.

Conservatives in Ireland, France, Spain, Portugal, Germany,  the Netherlands, Belgium, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Finland, Italy, Switzerland, Italy, the Balkans, Bulgaria, Greece, Slovakia, Poland, Hungary, and Romania are sometimes good, sometimes pretty bad, but they are all acceptable here. Conservatism in Europe mostly means nationalism. I am actually rather fond of the conservative running Hungary, Orban. LePen conservatives leave something to be desired, but they are acceptable. They’re mostly just nationalists. Hell, I might even vote for Marine LePen! If it was down to LePen versus Macron, I would absolutely support LePen!

Conservatives from Indonesia, Nepal and Philippines are not OK. These are an “everything for the rich elite, nothing for anybody else” type of conservative. Some of them even hide under the labels of Socialist or even Communist.

The word conservative has no real inherent meaning. It means whatever people say it means.

Anyway, the conservatives in the US are pure garbage and recently they have become out and out fascists after moving in that direction for a long time. And a particularly horrible type of fascist at that, a Latin American/Filipino/Indonesian style fascist. I will not allow any US conservatives to post on this board. You all are lucky I even let you lurk here. That’s an idle threat as I can’t ban lurkers, but if they all stopped lurking, I would not mind frankly.

You all really ought to go back to the gutters you crawled out of.

PS This especially applies to Libertarians, the very worst of all the US conservative vermin. We shoot Libertarians on sight here, so you better watch out.

*This applies only to economic conservatives. If you are not an economic conservative, and your conservatism is only of the social variety or you are only conservative on race, religion, guns, law and order, respect for tradition, American nationalism, the military, gender, sexual orientation or gender identity issues, you can stay. I’m not crazy about some social conservatives, but I can live with them. I will probably even let patriotards post as long as they are not economic conservatives.

I am an American nationalist myself. I just don’t like patriotards. Of course, I very much dislike and even hate the country as it is right now, but I sure don’t want to make it worse! I have to live here too you now, and it might as well be as pleasant as possible as long I stay here.

I want what’s best for my country. I don’t want to harm this country or screw it over. That will be bad for me! And believe it or not, most US patriotards do not want what is best for the country! I have dreams of a greater and better America. It’s not impossible, but we will have to undergo some serious cultural changes. One of the reasons I am so against illegal immigration is because it is ruining my country and making this place even worse. Also illegal immigration is terrible for US workers and I am for the workers. I am against H-1B visas for the same reason – they are wrecking my country. IT workers are workers too, so they are my comrades. I want what is best for America and American workers.

I cannot live with economic conservatives. I like cancer way more than I like US conservatives. Cancer is much more decent and respectable.

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Robert Stark Interviews Author Ray Harris

First Stark broadcast I have run in some time now.

This man Ray Harris is a true intellectual. Stark suggests that he also may be considered Alt Left, and I would agree with that.

A lot of interesting discussions going on here with a lot of it centering on nudity, social nudity, and our very nutty hangups about nudity. The Anglophone world is extremely uptight and Puritanical about social nudity in contrast to most of Europe. Germany and Spain in particular are quite wide open about this subject. There is also a lot about nude minors being portrayed in art. In recent years, the controversy has been mostly about naked teenage girls in movies.

Most of these movies were produced in Europe. Louis Malle’s Pretty Baby features a nude 12-year-old Brooke Shields. This clip is out there on the Internet for all to see because nudity is not necessarily child pornography. You can have all the pictures of naked kids all you want I guess.

Nudism sites certainly do, and they are all over the Net. They show humans including minors of all ages, wandering about in the nude on beaches, forests, etc. It’s honestly not very erotic, and the younger teenage girls are not as hot as you would think. They mostly appeared underdeveloped to me, and I wasn’t very into them. Of course the naked kids are not arousing at all, and I fail to understand why we flip out about this stuff. I mean, I can’t think of anything less interesting than a naked kid of either gender. So why do we have a heart attack every time we see one!? I mean it’s a naked human being. Is that evil or something? Color me mystified. What the Hell’s the matter with you hysterical  Puritans anyway?

Of course I have seen the Pretty Baby clip, and I must say, I can’t see why anyone would be turned on by 12 year old Brooke naked in her shower. I watched it and I thought, “Lame,” and “Why would anyone get turned on by that?” Nevertheless, the hysteria rages on out of control, burning minds to a crisp all over the land.

There’s a long history of painting naked minors, especially females, and in centuries past, it was quite common to paint young naked children. I believe Harris says it’s not done much anymore because artists are too paranoid.

The work of photographers Jock Sturges, David Hamilton, and Bill Henson is gone over. These are modern photographers whose work focuses on naked teenage girls.

Henson likes them real young, like age 13. I’ve seen some of that, and it’s not a turn-on at all. In fact, it’s a huge turnoff. You want to look away because you are thinking a girl that young is too young to be sexualized. It’s not erotic to me in the slightest. Instead it is shocking and weird. They have no bodies at all, no tits to speak of, their bodies look like boys’ bodies (I call females like that “sticks”), and at this point of my life, they really look like little girls. They’re not little girls anymore, but they look like they are.

I think we need laws to keep men and 13 year old girls from having sex. These girls need to be protected from us men, and we men need to be protected from ourselves. It would not be right for this to be legal. That’s practically a little girl.

Hamilton and I think Sturges focus on teenage girls, so that’s a lot more promising. Hamilton’s shots are in outdoor locations, often in groups. The photography is spectacular, and the girls are very beautiful.

On the other hand, at least Hamilton focuses like Henson on young teenage girls. I think most of those girls are 13-15, but correct me if I am wrong. I would have to loved to have looked at them earlier in adulthood because girls that age turned me on a lot more when I was younger like 18-30, but at my age, they just seem too young. It’s too much of a young girl. They’re not even much of a turn-on. Physically they are somewhat of course, but then they seem like too much of a young girl, and they are so underdeveloped and girlish, and that part of it is a turnoff and wipes out the physical part.

I know they are not little girls, but even 16 year old girls are starting to seem like little girls to me now. They are perfectly developed, but it just seems like way too much of a girl, and they seem very immature. I see them, and I think they are in junior high. I figure they are in 7th or 8th grade. I ask them if they are in junior high, and they get offended. Anyway, yes, I have seen Hamilton’s stuff and it is all over the Net if you want to go looking for it, and I assure you that it is all 100% legal. After all, nudity is not child porn. I’ve already seen it, and I have no desire to go looking for it again.

I forget Sturgis’ focus, but I think it was young teenage girls also.

I also worry about these men. What’s with the obsession with 13-15 year old teenage girls? I don’t get it. Sometimes I wonder if these guys’ sexual interests are completely OK. It’s not normal to be obsessed with young teenage girls. You are getting into hebephile territory, and hebephiles are not normal.

This subject has aroused some of the worst lies and libels about me of all. I have tried to address these lies, but I just dig the hole deeper. This is all based on some retarded thinking that people of normal intelligence always engage in. It’s called, “If you write about it, then you do it,” or “If you write about it, then you are one.” There’s also, “If you talk about it, then you do it,” and “If you talk about it, then you are one.” All of these are logical fallacies. Take this arguments to your Logic professor and see what he says.

These are examples of very stupid ways of thinking and almost 100% of the population with average intelligence thinks like this all the time. Now you see why people like me think people of average intelligence are retarded.

The Robert Lindsay Brush Fire about this matter was set off long ago. The fire is 0% controlled and is expected to rage into the foreseeable future. As long as that’s the case, I figure I will pour gasoline on the flames and sit back and watch the devastation. It’s rather entertaining to be a social arsonist. If you can’t beat em, join em.

Robert Stark Interviews Author Ray Harris

Paradise-Reclaimed

Cover of Ray Harris’ newest science fiction novel.

Robert Stark and co-host Pilleater interview writer Ray Harris. He is based out of Australia and is the author of Paradise Reclaimed which is available on e-book.

Link here.

Topics:

Ray’s science fiction novel Paradise Reclaimed about the story of the first interstellar colony.
Warnings about dystopia on Earth and creating a utopia from scratch.
Transhumanism, the idea of both genetic and social engineering, CRISPR Gene Editing, and the influence of Julian and Aldous Huxley.
Ecotopia, Solar Punk, Soleri’s Arcosanti, and combining the primitive and futuristic.
How we have the technology to advance civilization, but corporate and political corruption stands in the way.
Aldous Huxley’s Novel Island.
Jungian archetypes.
The upcoming sequel to the book The Golden City about the colonists returning to Earth after being isolated.
Social nudity, it’s place in the book’s space colony, and whether our aversion to it is rational.
The historic of social nudity, attitudes in Europe and Japan, and the Freikörperkultur Movement in Germany.
Different cultural attitudes towards sex in America, Europe, and Japan.
Developmental vs. chronological age.
The history of attitudes towards sexuality in the West, age of consent laws, and how they affected the arts.
Nudity in art; French Rococo painter François Boucher’s Leda and the Swan; works by Edgar Degas, Vincent van Gogh, and Jean-Honoré Fragonard.
Japanese Shunga art.
The debate about what is art and what is erotica.
Controversial nude photographers Bill Henson, Jock Sturges and David Hamilton.
The film Louis Malle’s Pretty Baby (1978), Eva Ionesco, and Natalie Portman in Léon: The Professional.

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Taking Apart Some Lies about North Korea

Jason Y: North Korea uses similar logic to explain deaths and other problems in it’s own land. They claim the embargo is to blame.

Nobody’s dying of starvation in North Korea these days. Forget it.

And the North Koreans have never “deliberately starved their own people.” Go out into the countryside at harvest time and the fields will be full of ears of corn. Rural villages look nice and there will be ears of corn spread over every rooftop. And you will see truckloads of happy farmworkers riding in trucks everywhere you go.

Now go to Pyongyang. Everywhere you go, you see men working, often at manual labor. They are working on streets, sidewalks, buildings, everything. And there are trucks full of male workers going here and there every time you look up. The whole place is working all day long.

Yes, the lights go out at night, but some people are still out. You can go out at 9 PM and see groups of teenage girls and young women hanging out in the dark. You walk by a darkened street and there is a 40 year old woman with her stand selling whatever. She is selling it at dark at midnight. The only light is a small light where her little street stand is. The interesting thing is that North Korea is quite safe. Like Japan, pretty young women can walk down the street in the middle of the night and nothing will happen to them.

Nobody’s starving to death, but if you go out to the countryside, you will see some middle-aged men who still look pretty thin.

But keep in mind. North Korea is locked out of the whole world banking system.

They have all these great products, like mineral reserves, and they cannot really sell them anywhere on Earth. They do sell them to the Chinese, but the Chinese are breaking sanctions to do that.

We have locked them out of the whole world banking system. We have made it so almost no one on Earth can buy their stuff. Then we scream and yell about how poor and starving they are.

It’s really messed up. One thing I assure you: North Korea does not “starve its own people on purpose.”

One argument was, “They spend all their money on their military, so their people starve!”

Now whether that is true or not, look at how we just threatened to attack them the other day. You don’t think it is pretty damn smart of them to spend all their money on their military? If they didn’t, we would have attacked them. We are forcing them to spend all their money on their military. Has that ever occurred to anyone? If they spent less on their military, we would attack, invade and conquer them.

That regime just wants to survive, first and foremost. Everything else is secondary. Yes, they are terribly brutal, but on the other hand, they sure have that place locked down good, don’t they?

And look at how hostile we are. We have come out and said that North Korea is enemy #1. OK, don’t you think they should lock their country down to keep out any American spies? They have that place locked down so good that we cannot even get spies in there. It’s either too risky or once they get in, they get caught fast and executed immediately. North Korea is a black hole. We have no idea what is going on with that regime. They have ~15 usable nuclear weapons already fastened as warheads to medium range missiles. These missiles are deep underground and almost impossible to get at. Yet we have no idea where on Earth those missiles even are. All we know is that they are hidden far deep under mountains somewhere. That’s pretty smart of them to lock that place down like that, isn’t it?

One more thing. Kim Jong Un is not a lunatic at all. He is a very smart man. He is shrewd. He had to be wicked smart and extremely sane to rise to power in that brutal system of theirs. He has killed some of the opposition, including his own brother. This is given as a sign that he is that is insane. But it’s not a symptom of insanity. Un is a murderous dictator, brutal as Hell. Un is as nuts as Stalin or Mao. Was Stalin nuts? Was Mao a lunatic? Kim is no different. He is a brutal dictator. Kim, Stalin and Mao were all amazingly sane.

There’s sane and insane and good and evil. People mix them up all the time. Some very bad people are rock-solid sane. Some very good people are pretty damn crazy.

These are two different axes were are discussing here.

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The Decline and Fall of the American Empire

Jason Y: Most people in the US ignored the MOAB. How did even change day to day life?Also, once it’s massively on Mideast, who would care? Or North Korea?

Not really. I got text messages about it. I saw lots of people talking about it. They were all excited and happy. The guys were all coming in their shorts and the women were all coming in their panties. I tried to criticize this sickening boondoggle and I got shouted down by a chorus of patriotards.

That’s what kind of people we are. We see a Goddamned bomb explosion and the whole nation has a collective orgasm.

Also, once it’s massively on Mideast, who would care? Or North Korea?

Are you kidding? Once the US is massively at war in the Mideast or North Korea, no Americans would care? Are we really that far gone? Wow, this must truly be the last days of the empire. First there’s the decline, then there’s the fall. God knows what stage this is.

We are getting like the Romans who threw Christians into arenas to fight lions to the death and cheered when the man got killed. At some point, you have a nation of decadent, depraved, jaded, orgiastic, wasteful, spendthrift, narcissistic, sadistic, occultist, death-worshiping sick fucks, and at that point, the nation or empire or whatever has got to go.

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MOAB’s Are WMD’s

Look, let’s face it.  MOAB’s are WMD’s.

WMD’s are outlawed because they are not fair. War is supposed to be at least somewhat fair, as in a fair fight. And to some extent, a fair fight between equals. That’s why you see these situations like in Syria of standoffs going on for two years in some cities and towns. Because that war is being fought so fairly that the SAA cannot even conquer that town or city because ISIS or Al Qaeda is on such an equal footing. That’s the way it is supposed to be!

We are getting to the point with these insane MOAB’s and whatnot where we can drop one bomb that will blow up a whole town or village. That’s fair? What’s left to do? Make a bomb that blows up a whole city?

And guess what? If we can make a MOAB, others can too. It’s not a nuclear weapon. Gee, I wonder what would happen if our troops got hit by a MOAB? We are getting to the point where wars are so destructive that they should not even be fought anymore and perhaps should just be outlawed altogether.

But MOAB’s should surely be banned. Napalm, white phosphorus and cluster bombs are banned, but people keep using the latter two anyway. Not only are they used, but the US uses them enthusiastically, and when (((our allies))) start running out of cluster bombs, we rush delivery huge quantities of them to (((our pals))). Land mines are also banned, but our noble country refuses to sign the treaty because we use thousands of them along the DMZ between North and South Korea.

It was rather sexual, wasn’t it, guys? So tell me, did you get an erection when that weapon ejaculated, I mean orgasmed, I mean exploded? That’s what’s really going on here, isn’t it boys?

What sort of people are we? We drop a bomb on a country, and the whole damn US stands up and cheers like they’re at a baseball game. Screw America. You sick fucks.

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