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Author Topic: JOHN WAYNE.....  (Read 9220 times)
Egdor
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« Reply #15 on: June 13, 2005, 02:55:22 AM »

Quote from: Groggy
I have no respect for the ideology of Communism, any more than I do fascism, Nazism, or any other type of totalitarian government.

Iím afraid it seems youíre confusing economics with governments. Economic systems are capitalism, mercantilism, communism and so forth. Totalitarianism, anarchy, monarchy and democracy are examples of governments.  The Soviet Union, for instance, was a totalitarian government that worked to attain communist economics, something it never did and never claimed to have done.

Now I have to tell you something that I believe is very important to bear in mind especially if youíre not a communist.  Communism is an ideology that has the best interests of humankind at heart, only communists may be a little too ideological in assuming everything will work out.

Quote from: Groggy
And BTW, American "McCarthyism" cost some people their jobs in the movies, but that's about it.  Comparing it to the Ukranian famine, Holocaust, Soviet gulags or the Cultural Revolution in China is absolute B.S., no ifs, ands, or buts about it.

Definitely, but I canít see that anyone made that comparison, though.  From what Iíve gathered most of the Ďcommunistsí of the McCarthy era were either socialists or capitalists. Very few if any of them, I think, were actually Marxists.

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Groggy
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« Reply #16 on: June 13, 2005, 04:03:12 PM »

Iím afraid it seems youíre confusing economics with governments. Economic systems are capitalism, mercantilism, communism and so forth. Totalitarianism, anarchy, monarchy and democracy are examples of governments.† The Soviet Union, for instance, was a totalitarian government that worked to attain communist economics, something it never did and never claimed to have done.

Now I have to tell you something that I believe is very important to bear in mind especially if youíre not a communist.† Communism is an ideology that has the best interests of humankind at heart, only communists may be a little too ideological in assuming everything will work out.

I agree with what seems to be the thrust of your argument - that theoretically, Communism could work.  Unfortunately, every place a Communist government has sprung up, there has been total disaster and oppression (USSR, Cuba, China, Vietnam, North Korea, etc.), some places certainly more than others.

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Definitely, but I canít see that anyone made that comparison, though.  From what Iíve gathered most of the Ďcommunistsí of the McCarthy era were either socialists or capitalists. Very few if any of them, I think, were actually Marxists.

There were a number of Soviet spies in the US government and in Hollywood (I assume you're familiar with the Venona Files), but yes, the vast majority of those accused of being such were innocent.  Like I said, I'm not a McCarthy fan, he had the right idea but did what he did for personal gain and glory more than "doing the right thing".  I do find the anti-McCarthy forces to have stooped to equally low levels (especially their gay baiting of Roy Cohn, but that's another story), but I don't think I'll defend McCarthy with any real vigor.
Like I said, those who were blacklisted may have found themselves out of a job for awhile, but that's it.  Most Communists got their old jobs back within ten years.  Only those that fled to Europe and elsewhere were permanently unemployed as a result of the "Red Scare".

And just for the record (though I may have already said this): "High Noon" has no political elements that I'm aware of.  I think that Wayne was being hypersensitive, if you ask me.  I love the man but sometimes I think he read too much into things.  I remember reading that "Rio Grande", according to him, was supposed to be an allegory of the Korean War (a major stretch).

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Egdor
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« Reply #17 on: June 13, 2005, 04:46:51 PM »

I agree with what seems to be the thrust of your argument - that theoretically, Communism could work.  Unfortunately, every place a Communist government has sprung up, there has been total disaster and oppression (USSR, Cuba, China, Vietnam, North Korea, etc.), some places certainly more than others.

All of those countries were very poor and had neither the resources nor the capability needed to stabilize a communist economy. This resulted in opposition, civil wars and terror. Anyway, sure life in the Soviet Union must have sucked, but it wasnít as bad as people tend to make out, really. At least it was a lot better life than under the Tsarist regime (which isnít saying a great deal, but still). There was the incredible bullshit of the Ďenemies of the peopleí Stalinism paranoia during 1936Ė1938, of course, but after Stalin it was an OK country, a lot better than other ones with similar regimes. And by the way (it annoys me to repeat this) the governments you speak of werenít communist  (because obviously communism isnít a type of government but a style of economy); they were totalitarian governemts with a more or less socialist economy working to attain communism.

Quote
And just for the record (though I may have already said this): "High Noon" has no political elements that I'm aware of.  I think that Wayne was being hypersensitive, if you ask me.  I love the man but sometimes I think he read too much into things.  I remember reading that "Rio Grande", according to him, was supposed to be an allegory of the Korean War (a major stretch).

High Noon does have some political content, even though it means nothing to us today. Itís not very evident, but itís a protest to the McCarthy stuff. Itís nothing remotely like propaganda, though, and it certainly can be enjoyed by everyone regardless of their political views.

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« Reply #18 on: June 13, 2005, 05:18:15 PM »

Ah, have to disagree with you again. 

North Korea - How well off in comparison to the rest of the world it was in 1949 is questionable, but in that year it had virtually all of Korea's industries and factories and dwarfed the South in virtually every way imaginable.  Thirty years later, South Korea was (and remains to this day) a competitive member of the world economy and North Korea was entering an age of horrendous poverty.  You could blame foreign sanctions to an extent, certainly, but I have little sympathy on that score, seeing as 31% of North Korea's GDP is spent on their military and Kim Jong-Il spends tens of millions of dollars on his personal homes while his people starve in the hundreds of thousands.

Cuba - Batista's government was corrupt, to be sure, but nowhere near as bad as Castro. Batista's "oppression" was basically telling the press to remain in line every once in awhile.  Even Castro cited Batista's prisons as being comparatively luxorious and fair.  Castro planned to make Cuba a Communist state even before the US turned on him, and his actions over the last forty years, though obviously not on the scale of Stalin or Mao, make anything Batista did seem like a misdemeanor.

USSR - Was ALWAYS an oppressive country.  50-100 million people (depending on which source you cite) were killed, millions more deported to gulags.  Khruschev, Brehznev, and Gorbachev were not as bad as Stalin, but that's like saying that cancer isn't as bad as the Ebola virus.  Even today you have guys like Putin who apparently want to restore the USSR (note Putin's interference in elections in Ukraine and Georgia).  This was basically Russian oppression of hundreds of minority groups who didn't want anything to do with the Russians.

Vietnam - You may have a point there.  I have many misgivings involving US involvement in Vietnam, but the fact of the matter is: once we pulled our troops out of South Vietnam, all hell broke loose, and millions of people were killed in Indochina.  Was the South Vietnamese government bad?  Hell yes, but then again we aided equally oppressive regimes in South Korea, Taiwan, Nicaragua, Chile, and El Salvador, and all of those countries are fairly stable democracies now.  Obviously it doesn't always work (see Iraq and Iran particularly), but there IS a track record of US-backed countries eventually ending up in the right.  The "Domino Theory" seemed to hold true, seeing as Laos and Cambodia quickly fell under Communist dominion.

China - Is basically a shadow of their former self, despite attempts to pain themselves as the world's "third superpower".  Slowly turning capitalist, with decaying military power and limited influence in world affairs.

Quote
And by the way (it annoys me to repeat this) the governments you speak of werenít communist  (because obviously communism isnít a type of government but a style of economy); they were totalitarian governemts with a more or less socialist economy working to attain communism.

This is a semantical argument at best.  Marxism is the theory that history is determined by economics and nothing else, and that governments should be based around this fact.  Yes, there have been Communist governments. 

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Egdor
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« Reply #19 on: June 13, 2005, 05:29:52 PM »

Iíll let you have the last word, Groggy, not because Iíve run out of arguments, but because itís really gone a little off-topic by now. It started out as some John Wayne trivia, and now weíre discussing this. Enough is enough.

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Groggy
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« Reply #20 on: June 13, 2005, 05:37:30 PM »

Iíll let you have the last word, Groggy, not because Iíve run out of arguments, but because itís really gone a little off-topic by now. It started out as some John Wayne trivia, and now weíre discussing this. Enough is enough.

Good idea.  Sorry about that, it was all my fault in starting a political discussion.  Undecided

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Egdor
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« Reply #21 on: June 13, 2005, 05:42:33 PM »

Ha, I guess we both got a little carried away.  Tongue

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Christopher
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« Reply #22 on: June 13, 2005, 07:48:46 PM »

Good, I'm glad we all reached that conclusion. Wink

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