Skip to comments.Dirty Hybrid: Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn on “democracy” and “democrats” in the Russian Federation.
Posted on 02/08/2015 4:43:30 PM PST by annalex
Translation from Russian and end notes are mine (A-x).
...Regrettably, that  we don't have now. But it would have been only half the disaster. Communism did not collapse with finality. The top tier has collapsed. The middle tier, a very stubborn tier, remains. A multitude of the nomenclature  a multitude declared themselves democrats. Turns out they were democrats all their lives. Now people write to me I get mountains of mail I don't keep up with reading them and sometime find time to respond to some, people write: In the very same offices, literally, the same snouts sit, except that they hung a different label on top. The nomenclature flowed into the new socio-governmental order with great skill.
And there is another big force that used that social breakthrough , the instantaneous transition to the new order. They are the sharks of financial underground world . It is shameful to even call them entrepreneurs. I don't consider them entrepreneurs. They have not created anything industrial. They created no real benefit for Russia.
[Interviewer:] Sellers of air.
[Solzhenitsyn:] Yes. They make money out of money. They would grab something that belonged to the state, then sell it somewhere for a profit, then bought something here and sold it elsewhere. And they are millionaires.
[Interviewer:] One witty man called such entrepreneurs middlemen. Middlemen between the worker and his pocket.
[Solzhenitsyn:] [laughs] Yes, right. So this is what happened: first, with great influence and force took the instruments of power. Power in the sense that the direction of our lives depended on them. Second, they began to interweave with the nomenclature. The most agile nomenclature men, --especially those tasked to launder the Communist Party's money bonded with them like this [shows clasped hands]. If this ruling class consolidates they will be oppressing us not 70 years  but 170. It would be impossible to punch then out.
Also don't forget that through all of this the structure of the KGB was preserved. I can only take it humoristically when they say that there is no KGB anymore. The KGB remains. Except, except, [waves hand] the facade was decorated a little bit. The KGB remains in this new socio-governmental system as a huge force with large apparatus, with all their large all-penetrating threads. And all that is covered up by a cloud of democracy.
So what we now have, the social and government system is a convergence on nomenclature, financial sharks, various pseudo-democrats that put on a nice veneer, and the KGB. How shall we call this? Not only won't I call it democracy, I instead must say: this is a dirty hybrid an analog of which cannot be found in history. This is a dirty hybrid and we don't know into what it will develop.
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 Democracy, apparently, is what Solzhenitsyn says we don't have. The clip begins in mid-sentence.
 Nomenclature is a distinct sociological term in the Soviet Union referring to the functionaries of the Communist Party enjoying special privileges.
 That in America became known as Russian Mafia and in Russia as the oligarchs: a select group of people with mixed criminal-KGB background who benefited immensely from the privatization program instituted by the collapsing Soviet government.
 Counting imprecisely from the Bolshevik revolution of 1917 to the Perestroika process in 1986-1988 that introduced political and economic reform and eventually lead to the end of the Cold War in 1989 and collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.
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I think the proper term here is nomenklatura.
The nomenklatura (Russian: номенклату́ра, Russian pronunciation: [nəmʲɪnklɐˈturə], Latin: nomenclatura) were a category of people within the Soviet Union and other Eastern Bloc countries who held various key administrative positions in all spheres of those countries' activity: government, industry, agriculture, education, etc., whose positions were granted only with approval by the communist party of each country or region.
Virtually all were members of the Communist Party. Critics of Stalin, such as Milovan Đilas, critically defined them as a new class. Trotskyism uses the term caste rather than class, because it sees the Soviet Union as a degenerated workers' state, not a new class society. Later developments of Trotsky's theories, notably Tony Cliff's theory of State Capitalism, did refer to the nomenklatura as a new class.
Sounds just like DC, when Administrations come and go.
fascinating take on Russia and OUR politicians.
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And what does the KGB want? And what will it stop at in its quest for it?
And what was the KGB's main tool in commerce?
It is absolutely naive and infantile to attribute the games being played in the oil markets to the Saudis.
Solzhinitsyn is one of the most brilliant men who ever lived. Shame Putin hasn’t learned from him.
Thank you, you are correct. Still with either spelling the term probably needs some explaining.
Done, thank you.
It is clear now that he was prophetic. The dirty hybrid has arrived, and 170 years is a long time.
Well, they learned. They learned that it is easier to maintain a docile and cowardly opposition than to put everyone to the GULAG. But they learned it, to a significant extent, from us.
Great post. Thank you. It is sad that such a revelation is not big news all over the world. But such is the power of disinformation.
From what little I could find out before his death, Solzhenitsyn thought Putin was doing a good job. Of course he was a very old man at the time and what he thought was not exactly well known. So who knows? Certainly Putin would want his support. What i wonder about is the timing of his death on August 3, 2008 and the invasion of Georgia on August 7. Could Putin have waited for his death in order not to be criticized by such a great man?
Prior to a certain point everyone thought that Putin was OK. He was seen as a sound alternative to the Communists and someone who could clean up the mafia. It is about 2008, and perhaps we can point to the war on Georgia as a turning point, that it became clear that this guy was working on a USSR 2.0 project.
John Randolph of Roanoke used to warn about King Numbers.
A tyranny of 51% of people or 51% of ones representatives, or a large noble clan, or a society of limited numbers or a single royal family or a single despot are all still tyranny.
Only a limited Republic of laws with checks and balances can give Ordered Liberty.
Monarchy is not tyranny simply because the monarch truly and legally owns the national infrastructure: roads, mint, posts, the military and therefore violates no one’s rights.
Of course that is true. I was speaking of Democracy and how it can be a tyranny despite issues of numbers and majority.
An absolute monarchy possessing the nation and the sovereignty truly cannot violate rights of vessels that have no rights is hardly a recommendation for that form of government. Instead, it is merely a description.
However, a monarchy where property rights exist, where takings are restricted from the monarch as in the “King IN Parliament” in the British system of old can well be free of tyranny.
Functionaries in communism change their descriptions to democrats and never change positions is what is pointed out by the article and the reason is that democracy is no lodestone — it holds no healing posers or magic.
That is no monarchy then, but a slaveholder estate. In monarchies throughout history everyone had property rights, not just the king.
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