Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Gorbachev actually does something useful for a change---suggests Perestroika for the U.S.

(Title Link) . Perestroika means restructuring, specifically economic restructuring in the way that Gorbachev is using it. Gorbachev is implying a move away from unfettered capitalism and neoliberalism in the wake of the economic crisis---and hoping that Barack Obama will bring it. Interestingly enough, the people at the Australian Broadcasting Company, where the article comes from, are apparently too fucking stupid to understand what Perestroika means in this context and instead make references to 'liberalisation of the economy' and 'rebuilding'. The U.S.' economy is already pretty liberal---that's the fucking problem and the reason why Gorbachev is hoping that Obama will do a Perestroika with our economy.

I say that Gorbachev has finally done something useful for a change because for the past sixteen years he's said precious little. No criticism of the United States' economy leading up to this mess came from his lips. No criticism of the U.S. itself, or again very little, came from him in this Siberia sized amount of time. Gorbachev, in my view, committed a grave error in the last days of the Soviet Union by basically giving up the idea of the Soviet Union as a viable country and instead standing by while the U.S. supported Yeltsin seized power and dismantled the whole system. This lead to a complete collapse of the Soviet economy, leading to starvation and conditions that officially decreased the average lifespan of Russian males. What Gorbachev became famous for wasn't passively sitting by and waxing idealistic while the capitalist countries sharpened their knives, it was trying to reform the Soviet system through economic restructuring and increased freedom of speech, as well as the infant implementation of more democracy in the political system.

Gorbachev let it slip away, believing possibly that George H.W. Bush and then BIll Clinton were actually people who had the well being of the Russian population at heart, instead of the basic lackeys for big business that they actually were. It isn't rocket science, and while Gorby gathered fame as a kind and gentle man, big business saw a smorgasbord of new potential markets opening up.

No comments: