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For the socialist who has everything… North Korea’s ‘biggest’ export

Under socialism, we are all equal, and under Communism, we shall want for nothing, or so we are told. However, if you know a socialist who wants that special present, and you are feeling generous, there is North Korea’s flourishing statue export industry, the BBC tells us.

Finding a gap in the ‘market’, North Korea has exploited its comparative advantages to sell the wares of the Mansudae Art Studio:

“The Russians and Chinese don’t make that kind of stuff any more,” says art critic William Feaver.

No, but they don’t have famines any more either, not for now, anyway.

Be warned mind, if you are looking for a surprise present for your favourite dictator, you might be disappointed, as the Hermit Kingdom have uncharacteristically let slip some details of projects.

Local media in Zimbabwe report there are two giant Robert Mugabes in storage waiting to commemorate his death.

And I bet they were hoping for champagne in Bulawayo.

The ‘studio’ employs 4,000 artists, and is, they claim, the biggest in the World. State funding of the Arts, with knobs on, the twist being this is for hard currency.

The BBC’s interviewee, an Italian gentleman, tells us about the artists envious lifestyles:

They have an enviable position you know – unlike a Western artist they don’t have to worry about selling their work, they have a salary. They are recognised and have privileges. The ones I know, they seem to live happily, they feel part of something

Part of a socialist slave state, but they have privileges.

Anyway, there’s a handy pointer to where in the world not to go if you want to avoid a craphole:

The export of this bold, direct, firmly authoritarian style began in the early 1980s as a diplomatic gift to socialist or non-aligned countries from their North Korean brothers. More recently it’s become a valuable source of hard currency, with artists and craftsmen from MOP working in Angola, Benin, Chad, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Ethiopia and Togo.

Mind you, am I alone in wondering if one or more of these statutes might just be right for Washington DC in mid-January 2017? Should we crowd-fund one for you-know-who as a legacy, one for Hillary and one for the Donald, just in case. I’m pretty sure Senator Sanders would be too self-effacing for this sort of thing. It wouldn’t be right for Mr Rubio either, but perhaps an Action Man doll, with a string in his back to play the same 25-second speech.

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10 comments to For the socialist who has everything… North Korea’s ‘biggest’ export

  • AngryTory

    unlike a Western artist they don’t have to worry about selling their work, they have a salary. They are recognised and have privileges

    Just like the “artists” in the BBC then. or the NHS. or state schools… etc

    I’m pretty sure Senator Sanders would be too self-effacing for this sort of thing

    yeah right. Once a communist, always a communist. I’m sure he enjoyed visiting all those statues in the USSR on his honeymoon, so no doubt he’ll be buying in a lot more of he skews the election, steals the top job, and can’t be nailed by the Senate or Supremes.

  • Mr Ed

    I’m pretty sure Senator Sanders would be too self-effacing for this sort of thing

    yeah right. Once a communist, always a communist.

    AT: I just think that he would probably prefer the ‘Old Masters’, Engels, Marx, Lenin, Bukharin, Kirov etc. whilst ‘modestly’ staying in the background. A difference in style, not substance. Even Stalin had his ‘modest’ moments, watching by as a simple ‘Worker/Peasant’ whilst Molotov signed his pact with von Ribbentrop, insisting that President Kallinin signed certain decrees as the head of the Soviet Union (including the one condemning Kallinin’s wife to the GULAG).

    The ‘modest’ ones are usually the worst.

  • Nicholas (Excentrality!) Gray

    We can crush the North Korean monopoly on statues by using 3D printers to make our own statues! Bring down the regime- buy an expensive printer! Do your bit for free enterprize!

  • AngryTory

    The most important part of the Constitution to be restored – even more than the 2nd Amendment – is the guarantee clause: democrat, socialist, and yes democrat-socialist governments are Unconstitutional in the USA.

  • PeterT

    Mind you, am I alone in wondering if one or more of these statutes might just be right for Washington DC in mid-January 2017?

    Nope; that was one of the first things to go through my head as well when I read the BBC article.

  • Might there be a degree of irony in Natalie’s closing remarks? Sanders – and Corbyn – would start with statues to others, dedicated with cringe-worthy articles implying how modest they themselves were, and end with statues to themselves (or their replacement as party leader by the sort of ‘subordinate who orders many self-statues) – to assist the North Korean comrades, of course. I suspect real modesty has a hard time coexisting with the ambition to create an omni-competent state which you personally will head.

    The more important question is: since North Korea has cornered this particular market, what niche should Venezuela find? Surely one of the usual suspects should write a “Major socialist questions of our time” pamphlet to address this.

    Although I remain more in favour of Cruz, I note reports that Rubio has improved since the repetitive performance that gave Natalie her closing joke. (No doubt he was strongly advised to do so, and practiced hard. I recall even Obama improved a bit after his pathetic first debate against Mitt Romney.) I also note that we’d all vote for Rubio-the-action-man doll over Sanders, let alone the real thing – compare Instapundit’s oft-repeated preference for a syphilitic camel as president rather than the current incumbent. For myself, I would prefer a camel of good moral character, but I agree that if one were installed, and used to choose answers in the way the ancient Egyptians consulted their sacred bulls, the statistical average quality of presidential decisions would rise.

    (I thought of putting a smiley at the end of that paragraph, but then I thought – is the closing statement not factually correct?)

  • Paul Marks

    Bill Clinton decided to subsidise North Korea (as did the leftist government in South Korea at the time) – its continued existence is their legacy.

  • Greg

    These statues are SO BIG and all being sent to complete a-holes…seems like an obvious thing to put a surprise inside. Give the covert ops guys something more fun to do. Let your imagination run! [1,000,000 leaflets congratulating the proletariat for knocking the damned thing down]

  • Shirley Knott

    Interesting to encounter this shortly before encountering this

  • We need a bronze head of both BHO and Pope Al Gore, about 14″ high from chin to scalp, set on pediments out in say Boston Harbor so we can watch them revealed as the oceans recede every 8 hours or so.