But now, I am compelled to talk about it again.
In the USSR, we had state-controlled media which shaped the narrative entirely.
Our founder, Vladimir Lenin, was portrayed as a noble, charismatic, and smart man — the champion of the underdog (the working class), the seeker of equality, defeater of the rich. The humble man with common ideas who was destined for greatness.
Lenin peered at us intently from textbooks and walls. His was the face behind the good intentions that shaped our everyday life.
As a kid, I was largely shielded by my family — they took the brunt of “adult tasks” in everyday life. They bribed officials to accomplish the most basic of things, they conserved every kopek and piece of bread, they got me the rare medicines I needed, all through means I didn’t dare fathom.
Of course, there was nothing special about those medicines, those favors, or anything else that took such effort to obtain — in America, you can just go out and get it in a corner store. In the Soviet Union, the word “deficit” was commonly used in everyday language.
“This and this product are in deficit.” This meant that you couldn’t buy them. Maybe for the next three months or maybe forever, unless someone was bribed or the product was obtained via the black market, friends, or contraband. Fruits and vegetables had their “seasons” when they made an appearance in local stores — we didn’t have advanced technology like hydroponic farms.
Instead, adults were herded into collective farms, which were the Soviet antithesis of family — or individual-owned farms. Under cheerful banners of “accomplishing a five-year plan in four,” they usually underperformed and the bureaucrats responsible faked the numbers, which moved up the chain of command…
Things are that bad.
And they will be getting worse.
Remember the Cannibal’s Paradox.
No matter what.