Talk:Communist Party of Czechoslovakia

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In General: This article was written by Czechoslovak and US experts in the 1980s and it is based on good and many sources. The article is already too "polite", because at that time when it was written it was not known yet what atrocities really happened in Czechoslovakia (thousands of people sentenced to labour camps and so on)

You expect "US experts" to be objective when writing about the Soviet bloc in the middle of the Cold War? As for the "atrocities" in Czechoslovakia, you obviously don't know what real atrocities are. Labour camps (or, to be more exact, chain gangs) existed in the USA until the middle of the 20th century too, and no one seems to make a big deal about them. Go to some war-torn 3rd world nation if you wish to see real atrocities...
(1)The article is based on Communist Czechoslovak sources - which makes it too "polite" as I mentioned (2) You have no idea what happened in Czechoslovakia in the 50s, how many people died for political reasons on the basis of invented trials, how many children could not attend higher schools for political reasons, that people basically were prohibited visiting western countries etc. And unfortunately the people in Czechia and Slovakia prefer to "forget" these things...
Actually, I have a pretty good picture, being an Eastern European (Romanian, to be more exact) myself. (1) The article is supposed to be NPOV, rather than a biased rant, so I don't see your problem. (2) Since I lived under a far worse regime than the one in Czechoslovakia, I certainly do have a very good picture of what you're talking about. But unlike you, it seems, I've managed to keep my objectivity. Like all things, the communist period had a good side and a bad side. For example, you mentioned the people who could not attend higher education (university) for political reasons. But there are hundreds of times more people in capitalism who can't attend higher education because they don't have the money for it. So, in this regard, it's communism 1, capitalism 0. And keep in mind that the 50s were the worst part of the communist period.
[oh, and yes, that annonymous user was me, posting from a public computer - as a matter of general principle, I never log in from a public computer, since there is a danger that certain stored cookies might allow other people who use that computer to log in with my username; and anyway, I know that at least one other wikipedian - who is a friend of mine - sometimes goes to the same internet café, so there may be others as well]

All your last changes are wrong. (1) There were no free elections, even the word elections is ridiculous for what really happened there.

Uh, yes, that's why I wrote that free elections were effectively abolished. So what exactly are we arguing about?
I made a revert, not individual corrections...
Then, in the future, please don't revert without reading first.

(2) In view of what really happened in the country even saying hat "political freedoms were abolished" is an exaggeration.

Wait... now you're saying that political freedoms weren't abolished? Maybe that's not what you meant, but that is what you wrote...
I meant it as exaggeration in the opposite direction of course. This is a language problem... But you have deleted it - does it mean political freedoms were not abolished? Are you suggesting: people could express their opinions freely, could found a political party, could critisize the government and the Party openly, could move to a western country without persecution, could own/buy foreign currency, could read/write/issue other than propagandistic Communist press, could choose from more than 2 TV channels with non-propagandistic content, could do or say something about the Soviet occupation after 1968 without losing their job etc. etc. etc.???
Actually, they could (and did) write lots of things that had nothing do with any Communist propaganda, as long as they didn't go against Communist propaganda. This was the general practice all across Eastern Europe. In Romania, for example, we had a number of very talented authors and novelists that lived and published their writings during the communist period - and Romania had a much more repressive regime than Czechoslovakia. But people could not express their political opinions freely or criticize the government, of course; political freedoms were indeed abolished.

(3) There is nothing like "soviet democracy" - if you are trying to do Communist propaganda and declare Communist countries "actually as democratic as the USA" or something like that (I do not hope so), create an own homepage.

A soviet is a workers' council. "Soviet democracy" is the system of government that Lenin and the post-revolutionary Russian Communists declared they were trying to build, with the government elected by the soviets, and thus by the workers. And, in case you haven't noticed, my edits also mentioned that soviet democracy was NOT actually achieved.
I now what soviets are - they were indoctrinating that in every school. The terminology "soviet democracy" was not used in Czechoslovakia and in Czechoslovakia there were no "soviets" (except for a short period in 1919 in The Slovak Soviet Republic). But - my mistake - I have overseen that the part in question describes what the Russians were saying than it is correct of course...
I don't see how you can be "indoctrinated" with the definition of a term - that's as absurd as saying that schools are "indoctrinating" people with mathematics or physics. But leaving this matter aside, please notice that I never used the term "soviet democracy" in relation to Czechoslovakia. I used it in relation to Lenin and the Soviet Union.

(4) Every "baby" in Czechoslovakia learned that "we are building socialism which is a preparatory phase for the final phase called communism" - so here you have corrected even Communist terminology and ideology obviously with the only aim to insert there the word "democracy" so that the party looks like a standard party, which it never was.

I inserted the word "democracy" in there because the stated aim of all Communist Parties is to build socialism and democracy, as originally described by Lenin. This is communist terminology, and it should be mentioned. The fact that they didn't actually follow their stated aim should also be mentioned. That's what my edits are about. In essence, I'm trying to say "The Communist Party of Czechoslovakia declared that it wanted to establish a socialist and democratic system, but this did not happen".
That is of course correct, but you will have to do that without the term "soviet democracy" for Czechoslovakia.
Well, "soviet democracy" is an accurate term when talking about the Communists in the early Soviet Union. And that's what the paragraph which includes the mention of "soviet democracy" is talking about - the beginning of the Communist movement in general, not the Czechoslovak Communists in particular.

(5) Do not force me to go into details and list all the desastres that happened in Czechoslovakia in all spheres of life and economy under Communists rule and which turned one of the 10 most prosperous countries in the world basically into a third-world country... Juro 00:23, 7 Oct 2004 (UTC)

And you had better not force me to go into details and list all the disasters that happened in the former Czechoslovakia in all spheres of life and economy under capitalist rule during the past 15 years. In 1990, according to the archives of the CIA world factbook (which can be expected to be biased against the Communists), Czechoslovakia was the 21st most prosperous country in the world. That's no. 21 out of more than 176. If you think these are "third world country" standards, then you have serious problems my friend. Oh, and by the way, as of 2003, in the same economic ranking, the Czech Republic is no. 44 in the world, and Slovakia is no. 62. Whoops. Not a very good record for the capitalists, is it?
Please do not try to argue in fields you have no idea of. (1) It was Czechoslovak economists themselves in the 1980s who found out what I am saying, not me. In the 80s the GDP was even decreasing. (2) This so ridiculous - you use a table of ABSOLUTE gNp numbers to evaluate relative richness of countries??? - you have to take a basic economy course then. Here a short introduction: First you need per capita figures at least (see the homepage indicated by you - Czechoslovakia was 34th, but even the numbers are unreliable, because socialist countries used a completely different system of national accounts that let the numbers looks better and I am sure the page did not adjust them), second you need PPP figures and finally it is better to use gDp. Relatively correct figures are provided by the OECD in a special study, but I assume that you have no access as a normal user. Finally, these numbers do not take into account that most goods were simply not available or only available after haevy efforts and then only in an outdated form, that resources have been wasted to a tremendous extent, reinvestments in rail, roads were simply left out and have to be done now etc. And the decrease in economy after 1990 was because the structure of Czechoslovak economy was so desperately antiquated and uncompetitive that most of the firms went bankrupt when they had to face competition (but interestingly from countries which were mostly "less developped" acording to you). Finally, I will try to provide a primitive argument, which even people without knowledge of economy (especially in the USA) should understand : Compare Austria and Czechoslovakia : Austria was a very poor country before WWII, Czechoslovakia was the oposite. Now, compare the GDP numbers as from the 1980s and you will see the difference between "capitalism" and "socialism". And the difference would be even much worse, if you had made a personal journey between those two countries in the 1980s - you would see the difference at every step and you would actually find out that Austria was in fact a more "socialist" country than any of the Soviet block states. The same applies to a comparison between Western Germany and Eastern Germany - here you have even an approximately equal starting base.
On the contrary, you seem to be the one who makes glaring errors. (1) If the GDP was decreasing in the 80s, that only makes my argument stronger: Even after 10 years of GDP decline, in 1990, the economy of Czechoslovakia was still the 21st largest in the world. (2) First of all, the table I showed you does NOT measure absolute GNP. It measures absolute GDP. Second of all, absolute GDP is an accurate measure of a country's economic strength. By contrast, the per capita / PPP figures are a good measure of the average standard of living of that country's citizens. Predictably, all communist countries score higher in economic strength than standard of living. But even so, Czechoslovakia scores 34th in per capita GDP, which puts it just below Israel (33rd), and above many capitalist countries such as Portugal (38th), Taiwan (44th), Greece (47th), and South Korea (58th). Oh, and keep in mind that all these numbers come from the CIA. If there was any way to lower the numbers for communist countries and inflate the ones for the capitalists, you can be certain that the CIA did it. As for the horrible disaster of the present-day capitalist economies in the Czech Republic (53rd in per capita GDP in 2003) and Slovakia (61st), let me remind you that 15 years have passed since the fall of communism. That's over 1/3 of the total period of time spent under communism in the first place. The excuse that "all our economic problems are the communists' fault" is starting to look increasingly pathetic.
Finally, regarding Austria, can you cite any figures to prove your claims that it was so poor before the war? And even assuming your claims are correct, what about the war itself? The war obliterated any good economy that Czechoslovakia might have had in the 1930's, while Austria was mostly spared (at least until the final months of the war). As for West and East Germany, notice that all the historically wealthy regions and industrial centers of Germany - such as the Ruhr - were in the West. East Germany had to rebuild its industry practically from scratch. -- Mihnea Tudoreanu 09:26, 9 Oct 2004 (UTC)
But let's get back to the issue of the actual article. I hope you'll find my new version acceptable, particularly since most of your objections seem to have been the result of misunderstandings.
I'm afraid I'll have no time to deal with this article although it would certainly desire it. Juro 15:54, 8 Oct 2004 (UTC)

First of all, I simply do not discuss economic questions with someone who is claiming that absolute income numbers are a good measure of anything...Actually that's not basic economics but basic logics...And your other economic arguments are even worse - you are even denying what the communist economists were saying in Czechoslovakia. And I see that you even have problems with modern Czechoslovak, Austrian and German history - but no wonder, I myself would have problems with Romanian, Bulgarian etc. history. To put it short - you are relativizing and doing philosophy about things where you do not know enough facts (this seems to be "in" in recent years)...And your argument regarding not being able to study for financial reasons being the "equivalent" or "opposite" to not being able to study for political reasons - I will try to ignore it... And as for the remaining arguments - look, the article is OK now, the problems started when you deleted the political freedoms which made me believe you are one of those who try to make their propaganda here (because there were at least 2 such persons here during the past days)... Juro 01:44, 10 Oct 2004 (UTC)

PPP (purchasing power parity) does NOT refer to absolute income numbers, my friend. You certainly don't seem to be even half as knowledgeable in economics as you claim. Allow me to enlighten you. I quote from the article on purchasing power parity:
In economics, purchasing power parity (PPP) is a method used to calculate exchange rates between the currencies of different countries. PPP exchange rates are used in international comparisons of standard of living. They calculate the relative value of currencies based on what those currencies will buy in their nation of origin. Typically, the prices of many goods will be considered, and weighted according to their importance in the economy.
So, you see, I'm afraid my arguments were perfectly correct. The numbers do not lie.
But, at any rate, we have resolved our dispute regarding the article, so I suppose there's no point in continuing this argument. -- Mihnea Tudoreanu 14:57, 10 Oct 2004 (UTC)
This is too much of stupidity at once, I am sorry - you are even condusing the words absolute income and PPP - well done. Go to play elsewhere Juro 15:19, 10 Oct 2004 (UTC)
That's funny, I don't remember talking about "absolute income" at any point in our conversation... Perhaps you should improve your reading skills? -- Mihnea Tudoreanu 16:27, 10 Oct 2004 (UTC)
But I was, perhaps you should improve yours...


-- (talk) 16:18, 10 August 2011 (UTC) God knows how many communists were murdered by the Nazis for resistance activities during the war, yet not a single word of it is mentioned in this article.


Some original names are only in Czech - eg. tajemník. The words should be qualified as Czech and Slovak names should be added.Xx234 (talk) 08:07, 16 December 2014 (UTC)