This post is the latest in a series from our Bangkok correspondent, H. Numan. Tonight he is taking a look at Thailand’s next-door neighbor.
Right now the oppressive regime in Myanmar, or Burma, is once more featuring prominently in the news. The hated regime represents everything that left wing political parties abhor: excessive brutal force used to suppress the poor population, widespread censorship, strict military rule. You name it, the Burmese government does it. But… the government isn’t a right wing dictatorship at all. It is a socialist dictatorship!
Yes, you read that right: Myanmar is a people’s socialist republic, just as Cuba, Laos, and North Korea are. Myanmar was a British colony that gained independence in 1948 under the name “the Union of Burma”. It was a prospering democratic country. Rich in resources, rich in history, with many capable people. The first non-westerner to head an international organization was the Burmese U Thant: he became Secretary-General of the United Nations from 1961 to 1966. Unfortunately, Burma also had a few capable people who weren’t interested in the nation, only in wealth and power. Meet General Ne Win.
That changed in 1962, when General Ne Win staged a coup d’état. From that moment Burma shut down its borders to the world. He ruled for 20 years with an iron fist. Under his government the country became a socialist nation. Not just in name, but a real socialist nation. With all the trappings: the nationalization of industry, a government monopoly on just about everything, strong censorship, closed borders, and a one party government. Plus, of course, widespread poverty for everybody, even for the supporters of the regime. Only the top generals a few colonels and a major or two really bathe in luxury. is beats being a sergeant cracking the whip than being a civilian on the receiving end, however — the normal way socialism works worldwide, in other words.
In 1974 the regime changed its name to the Socialist Republic of the Union of Burma. In 1988 they again changed it, this time into “The Union of Burma”. It wasn’t what they really wanted, so in 1989 the country was renamed again, now as Myanmar. The name Burma still applies, but is officially not recognized anymore.
A rose would still smell as sweet even if you name it differently. The reverse, of course, is also true: manure wouldn’t smell any better under a different name. The government in 1988 named itself the “State Law and Order Restoration Council” or SLORC for short. When this gave the world a foul taste in its mouth: Why, we change it, of course! So the SLORC became the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) in 1997. Under this name the socialist regime is currently known — until the next change, that is. No matter under what name they operate, be in no doubt that Myanmar is a socialist people’s republic.
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From the moment Burma closed itself off from the outside world, the economy went up the creek. What was once a prosperous country with a good future to look forward to changed into a socialist slave camp. Maybe not as bad as North Korea, but certainly one of the worst in the socialist world. So bad, in fact, that even socialists do not want to be associated with it. Now, that really takes some doing!
Several Western governments are now being urged by left-wing organizations and parties to boycott Myanmar. The Dutch government in particular is rather vocal about it. Prime Minister Balkenende, who incidentally just announced he will refuse a referendum on the Euro constitution, against the wishes of both parliament and the entire population, asked for such an international boycott. Krista van Velzen, a member of parliament for the Dutch Socialist Party and the only member of parliament with a criminal record, is extremely vocal about economically boycotting this vile oppressive regime into surrender. Which is in line with her party’s policy, I might add.
This is completely useless. Boycotts are rarely successful. If they are, other factors play a much more important role behind the scenes. As much as the socialist fighters for world peace and solidarity would like you to believe: South Africa wasn’t boycotted economically into surrender. Exporting oranges formed just a little part of the economy (“Boycott Outspan”), exporting gold was far more important. Political pressure from the leading nations of the world changed more than not buying a few oranges. South Africa was anything but a socialist nation, so international political pressure did work.
In Burma even that doesn’t work. The government, in good socialist tradition, doesn’t give a hoot about the world or anyone’s opinion. If it did, it would have surrendered decades ago. It doesn’t like a boycott, but doesn’t care one way or another. Exporting rubies is profitable enough, be it legal or illegal. (A lot of the ruby export is done illegally the government itself.) Big companies, such as Shell, Heineken and Phillips have been forced out of Burma without any effect whatsoever, apart from some loss of revenue, and not even a significant loss at that. Since they are exploiting capitalist companies, that’s a side benefit in the eyes of our progressive fighters for the world proletariat.
In fact, the opposite would work: much more international business investment in the country would almost certainly topple the government. Big companies usually provide good health care and education for their staff and dependents. They build hospitals and schools. A healthy worker is a good worker. An educated worker is a profitable worker. Doesn’t sound altruistic, but that’s the way the world works. Luxury is addictive. Once business invest in Burma’s economy, it will improve everybody’s standard of living measurably. Sooner or later the regime will topple from within. It’s also much easier to convince a rich general to retire in comfort than force him to defend himself until the last bullet.
This was Bangkok reporting,
Excellent post. Of course, many Leftists will claim that Myanmar is ‘Right Wing’, just like they scream that Hitler’s Nazi Germany was “RIGHT WING!” when someone tells them it was actually Socialist…
absurd thought –
God of the Universe wants
complete narco states
criminals in power
loving the corrupt drug war
absurd thought –
God of the Universe likes
communists and criminals
they both like to steal
and KILL to cover their crimes
absurd thought –
God of the Universe says
outlaw all alcohol
make cigarettes illegal
organized crime takes over
If you actually think north korea, myanmar, vietnam, cuba, (y pronto venezuela)… etc are socialists nations, then please go back to school and kill yourself. Norway, Iceland, Finland, Denmark, and to some extent Canada are true socialist nations. i thought this blog was filled with smart people, but i thought wrong :/. it’s just like the rest of the radical right wing neocon extremist(and fox news viewers and george bush voters)websites out there like GLF or jihadwatch… c’mon, why can’t there be a website filled with “neutral” people, smart people, people with no mental problems :_( oh well…
Oh, and btw i find it hilarious,, idk if i read it here the other day, it was a comment, it said something like the “atheist socialist europeans!!! it’s their fault, their values(or non values)…” boooo! scary!!! McCarthyism all over again. and apparently is the same thinking most people have in here and in those other websites, i thought they were conservative as in conserve culture, conserve law & order and conserve humanism not conservative as in what i just mentioned above(neocon-bush-fox news-republifags… ya know who you are) but again, i was wrong. /silly gringos, instead of unifying they destroy each other, the USA is one of the most polarized nations on earth, gee i wonder why /sarcasm.
And one of the funniest things is that your friend Bush likes immigrants(don’t you remember 🙁 what he passed to congress? ah, you forgot already!) and you spent your time attacking(again along with the other websites)the democrats, the “corrupt socialists”, horrible soulless infidel-atheists(most of europeans are btw they don’t have mental problems[thx to our lord Poseidon, Apollo and our mighty Optimus Maximus Jupiter- the god with the biggest penis in the universe, so he’s better than your god btw, he’s an alpha male, he has sex with all the wimminz, you’re all atheists to them so you’re gonna get raped by Osiris and the other 331 millions gods in the underworld]/see what i did there 😉 ) instead of attacking him or the ones responsible in other parts of the world, the current administrations of each goverment, like in Sweden, Holland or Belgium… or organizations like the U.N… etc.
Well, have a great life, after i publish this comment i’m gone for good from this website.
“If you actually think north korea, myanmar, vietnam, cuba, (y pronto venezuela)… etc are socialists nations, then please go back to school and kill yourself”
Typical arrogance of the left, I’d say. You couldn’t be more wrong, but I won’t ask you to go kill yourself. I would suggest you take some of your own advice and study a bit on the subject. Don’t go back to school literally, as schools these days are infested with socialist propaganda, so they won’t teach you what socialism really is about. Schools will tell you socialism is social, while being the opposite.
Read something on the Frankfort School and Cultural Marxism, Critical Theory and Political Correctness. You’ll find and article on my site. That will tell you what the current state of affairs is in Europe, which is getting more socialist by the day, but is not ‘true socialist’ yet.
I also fail to see why you tie Vietnam in with Cuba, Myanmar and N-Korea, as Vietnam is an emerging Capitalist country on its way to prosperity. Please see this documentary video by Johan Norberg.
“it’s just like the rest of the radical right wing neocon extremist(and fox news viewers and george bush voters)websites out there like GLF or jihadwatch…”
I strongly resent being called a radical right wing neocon extremist. Actually, I’m a left liberal. However, I also believe in freedom of speech and democracy (I know, what a concept for the left!) I used to live under a conseverative-right government, which was the result of a democratic election. I didn’t like it, but I figured that’s democracy. And that’s fine. Obviously, the rest of Europe didn’t agree with that and threw sanctions on a EU member state for the outcome of a democratic election. And that pisses me off, because it tells me that democracy is dying.
That said, I do believe that our western values and our democracies have to be protected. The power of government must come from the people and that is the basis of democracy, but not the basis of Islam or any of those dictatorships. In those an elite leadership caste is in charge and defends this power with force and violence.
Freedom and democracy does not mean giving in at any pressure, like the EU and its governments like to do it. I don’t care what religion someone has, but once this religion starts threatening our freedom and democracy, then it’s time to bring out the ugly stick and deal out a good thrashing. Yes Islam, I’m talking about you.
Obviously, most other left liberals seem to forget that many people died for the democracy we have today. And that makes me consider switching camps, away from the left liberal.
On the day we give up our freedom, our liberty and our democracy for whatever reason (there is NO justified reason), we can turn into Iran 2.0. And personally, I’d rather die than experiencing this.
Current wellfares basis in the north has been made prior to the socialists takeover. In the 50’s/ 60’s, sweden forexample, made an economic growth that is still unbeatable. This was achieved by using cheap immigrant labourwork (mainly finns) along with good and reliable products to sell. – capitalism in its cutest form.
Then socieldemocrats took over. Today, if sweden would be one the states in the US, it would be second poorest. Almost half of the population is dependant on public aid. This is same in any of the scandinavian countries. The wealth what we have here has been made, i repeat, has been made before social democrats / communists.
Tragic is that socialists reasons today that because immigration provided a massive growth in the economy in 50’s and 60’s it would do it again. They just fail to fathom, that the immigrants who did that growth were hardworking, stubborn (antisocial 🙂 ) finns. Not somalies or other sensitive religious fanatics.
It seems that, socialists really wants to paint themselves as saviours of all man (because somebodys got to do it when christ and god is removed from the system as their enemies). Too bad, that it looks that all they ever had was only a reversed touch of Midas. – They turn everything what they touch into crap.
Any movement who seeks the support of the poor, only creates poverty. This is simple formula and the proof is in the pudding (have you ever heard a left party saying that they want to make people rich? I know, me neither, because it can’t be done by expecting somebody to hand the richness over. It comes from hard work and from fair rules. Left opposes these both).
I strongly suggest all the leftish people to the sign out from that cult of death and stand on your own two feet.
– Left is only an alternative for being right
Trackbacked by The Thunder Run – Web Reconnaissance for 10/01/2007
A short recon of what’s out there that might draw your attention, updated throughout the day…so check back often.
Gosh that Zonar is pretty amazing. He can write sentences as long as William Faulkner’s — unfortunately less coherent.
Can’t say I’m sorry to see him go. Hope the door didn’t hit him in the behind on his way out.
My favorite phrase — and it is hard to pick just one — was “radical right wing neocon extremist”…
And all this time I thought I was a libertarian. Sort of. What adjectives go with libertarian?
Just occured to me.
Hmm. If finnish cheap labour was in the core of the system that created swedish current wellfare it makes me think something pretty cool:
– finns built finland in a world record time from being ww2 -wreck starving marving into worldclass producer of ‘stuff’ that makes world go around. This right after tossing the superior red plague back to where it came from.
– At the same time finns built also swedish welfare state, in a world record time!
Now, this should be a standard for the immigrants! I bet there wouldn’t be problems:
Immigrants, build a world class economic ‘system’ in a world record time ‘and’ do it twice. At your home ‘and’ abroad, preferably the at same time.
Nobody would have complaints, they just may think you as morons, but somebodys just got to do it.
This short narrative you set out is probably the most interesting story I’ve heard in a long while.
Do you know any blogs/articles/books that give the dtails?…in English, for us poor limited Americans.
Well, it just occured to me..
Heres the facts as far as Im aware of, I suppose all of these are easily verifiable as well:
– Finns forms largest minority in sweden. This was formed in the 50’s to 70’s when sweden had the world record economic growth. Growth increased immigration and immigration increased the economic growth. Latter because the majority of the immigrants were hard working finns. -Didn’t complain or ask anything special. When sweden speaks about “finnjävlar” (how PC is that? lol) they are referring to a fraction of some misfits who were problem where ever they set their boots on. (most of these misfits did actually do hard work besides being misfit as well..)
– At the same time in finland, we paid our war dues (very unfair ones) in time what has never been done before by anyone else. In the doing, this created infrastructure for other industries that lifted finland into a wellfare nation in a very short period.
Then socialdemoctats took over. Well, they were in places all the way, but they managed to sell the lie to masses of distributing the wealth to everyone. This ment, poverty to everyone.
By implimenting the communist doctrines of equality in to the system, they created only a massive bureucrazy, massive public sector etc. Punished private sector from any little misfortune with heavy hand, demonized the private entrepreneurs and private sector overall etc.
Blood red communism what it is.
These sucked the living force out from the system and continues to do so. I suppose to the last drop of fresh living blood.
One more thing. There is no such thing as equality. If there is a group of ten men. – after couple hours, they are no equal. There is a clear hiararchy, that can change, but there is no way to pinpoint the exact moment where they are ‘equal’ in a sense what all the minorities are looking for.
Equality is a red herring and complete nonsense. The whole thing.