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Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

Samizdata quote of the day

We do note that there’s often enough an attempt to rewrite history. Or, perhaps, to emphasise one aspect rather than another. The New York Times recently ran a piece insisting that communism had its good parts as women had more orgasms. Female sexual pleasure is indeed important but we’re deeply unsure that it’s a justification for the Holodomor.

Tim Worstall

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19 comments to Samizdata quote of the day

  • Alisa

    That NYT piece is part of this series, which is quite good in presenting different and even opposing views on the history of the Eastern Bloc, and the life behind the Iron Curtain. It would be a shame to see it dismissed based just on one rather silly piece, or simply because it is in the NYT.

  • bobby b

    Is anyone aware of a place where that article can be read by a nonsubscriber? I’d like to see if there was a spike in the birthrate at the time of the claimed orgasmacade. If there was, I might believe the claim.

  • The idea that communism would solve not only all economic problems but also all sexual problems, as part of its ability to solve all problems and bring history to an end, was a minor part of its rhetoric. Communism was to bring history to an end by solving the essential problems of humanity – so it sort of had to solve all problems.

    A comic side-effect is seen in the 1930s Russian joke about the minor communist functionary whose wife complained to the local party committee that her husband was denying her conjugal rights. “Comrades”, confessed the embarrassed man, “I am impotent.” “Impossible,”, replied the chairman, “you are a communist!” That joke – told widely enough that it came to the ears of westerners – gives something of the feel.

    A less amusing aspect – does the NYT mention it? – was when 3000 Moscow homosexuals found themselves arrested and dumped in a slave labour camp on the notorious White Sea canal project. Communist philosophy – when developed to the extreme by the kind of ‘virtue-signallers’ who insisted there was a proper communistic way to play chess against wrong capitalistic chess-playing – said that it was of course the injustices and pressures of exploitative capitalism that produced perverse human sexualities and these evils too would vanish under the beneficent reign of communism! So it became desirable that western ‘useful idiots’ visiting Moscow not see anyone that might prompt them to think that any human issue was beyond the philosophy’s scope.

  • Alisa (October 15, 2017 at 2:07 am), I believe it does present “different and even opposing views”, and I’m not against us reading them. I’ve read a lot of different and even opposing views on communism in my time. I await the NYT series presenting different and even opposing views on life in Nazi Germany. 🙂

  • Lee Moore

    It seems to be perfectly plausible. I think we had a bit of a baby boom during Ted Heath’s power cuts, as watching TV was off the table. Grace Kelly was alleged to have had an affair with Clark Gable on location during the filming of Mogambo because “there was nothing else to do.” Take away all the other options and you could even get people to do more long division.

    So, sure, if you locked every husband and wife in a room for twelve hours a day, no TV, no nothing except a mattress, you’d probably increase the orgasm rate, even in Minnesota. But probably the murder rate too.

  • bobby b

    So, sure, if you locked every husband and wife in a room for twelve hours a day, no TV, no nothing except a mattress, you’d probably increase the orgasm rate, even in Minnesota.”

    In Minnesota, we’re Norwegians, Swedes, and Finns. We’d probably just sit in separate corners and brood.

  • Mr Ecks

    I’m sure that the females arrested in the 30s and 40s, who Solzhenitsyn describes as being raped several times before the vans even reached the police stations, enjoyed their socialist proved orgasms.

    As did, no doubt, the teenaged girls drugged and raped by Beria. How lucky for these girls to start their sexual lives with a dose of socialist virility.

    Piss on the NYT and its Red-sucking articles.

  • Jacob

    Here is a NYT article from that series, worth reading.

  • I await the NYT series presenting different and even opposing views on life in Nazi Germany.

    On second thoughts, maybe I should lower my sights and just await a series presenting different and even opposing views on life in Trump’s USA. (Of course, to some NYT editors, that may not be lowering my sights. 🙂 )

    In one sizeable community during the Ukraine famine, there was precisely one birth – to the wife of an activist – in two years. A very rare instance of of the communists letting statistical data slip through the net occurred in early 1941, when some school data revealed that the 7-year-old class size in areas just annexed from Rumania was two-thirds larger than the 11-years-old class size, whereas in the Ukraine famine areas, the 7-year-old class was only two-fifths the size of the 11-years-old class (itself much smaller than it should have been). So I question how much sexual activity – let alone deeply satisfying activity – starving people engage in.

    A few years later, the great terror ensured that many people were waiting for the midnight knock at the door. It is said that in Leningrad, the rumble of secret police cars during the midnight-sun nights was particularly disturbing. It must surely have inhibited climax – along with many other happy emotions – to be wondering whether the secret policeman was about to pound on the door.

    Let me not be wholly one-sided in my analysis. Reports from the gulag show that while male sexuality was damped down by the beatings, cold and starvation, female sexuality was not so affected; indeed, hysteria was common from this cause [1]. Thus it is possible that some sexual activity, nominally for food, was nevertheless more satisfying than one might think. As against that, it is clear that while rape was the sole crime that was rare in the Nazi camps (“Jewish women were fit only to be beaten, enslaved and killed, and certainly not to have intimate physical contact with members of the master race.’ is how one Jewish girl who survived two years in Auschwitz put it [2]), assault by the criminal trusties (the ‘Urkas’ or ‘Blatnoy’) and guards was common in the gulag. Having encountered some revolting descriptions during my historical reading [3], I feel sure female sexual pleasure was not involved.

    Much more rarely, female-on-male abuse occurred. The female NKVD interrogator detailed in Michael Krupka’s “Shallow Graves in Siberia” presumably gained climax from what she did to her subjects. In all my reading about the USSR, that seems to me to be the only female orgasm one could specifically credit to the communist system.

    [1] Data and further references in Robert Conquest, “The Great Terror”.

    [2] Kitty Hart, “Return to Auschwitz’. The Nazi interest in separating male and female prisoners lest they breed, and in preventing ‘Rassenschande’, contrasted with an immensely callous indifference in the communist system.

    [3] The book ‘Vorkuta’, written by a polish resistance fighter arrested by the NKVD at the end of WWII, contains a description of trusties pressuring guards to add a quota of women prisoners to an all-male camp for this purpose, the pleasures of homosexual assault not satisfying all. (Whereas under the Nazis, a proportion of males were often killed in the roundups and earlier actions, leading to an excess of women in the camps, the communist arrest categories tended to cause an excess of males in the camps.)

  • Jacob

    The women in the West enjoyed more sex too, after the sexual revolution of the 1960-ies. Not being a woman I don’t know if it was better sex or only more sex.

    The welfare laws (in the West) made any teen mother a recipient of public housing and a monthly welfare check. I guess this check was about double or triple of what the liberated mothers got in the USSR for the work in the factories that the state assigned them.

  • Alisa

    Niall, the Nazi regime did not last 70 years – nice try though 🙂

    On second thoughts, maybe I should lower my sights and just await a series presenting different and even opposing views on life in Trump’s USA.

    May it last just as long! 😛

  • Alisa

    Is anyone aware of a place where that article can be read by a nonsubscriber? I’d like to see if there was a spike in the birthrate at the time of the claimed orgasmacade. If there was, I might believe the claim.

    Bobby, I meant ‘silly’ quite seriously.

    In Minnesota, we’re Norwegians, Swedes, and Finns. We’d probably just sit in separate corners and brood.

    There goes my keyboard 😀

  • Paul Marks

    As is often, and rightly, pointed out that the New York Times lied about the Terror Famines in the Soviet Union in the 1930s – pretending that millions of people were not being starved to death.

    The New York Times also lied about Mao and Castro (in the drive to power) pretending they were moderates who could be accommodated. It is not a joke – the New York Times is evil, and that should be stated clearly and without evasion.

    That the evil collectivists who control such things as the New York Times and the rest of the “mainstream media” (such as Hollywood), and the “education system” (most of the schools and universities) are called “liberals” is perhaps the worse abuses of language in our time.

  • Thailover

    I don’t know if communism makes better orgasms, but Russia certainly “makes” (has) some beautiful women who make beautiful music. (Youtube singing vid)
    https://youtu.be/V8slArpj_XU
    Be sure to click the CC button on the lower left for English translation.

  • Bruce

    Some really BIG question about this claim nned to be asked.

    Precisely WHO was doing the “counting”? Or did everybody have to fill out a “job-sheet” / “score-card”? (Countersigned, of course, and in triplicate,)each day.

    Wasn’t there an old Stalinist thing about, “It’s not who orgasms that counts, but who counts the orgasms”, …..or some-such?

  • bobby b

    “Implementing the historical resolutions of the 24th congress of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, on the basis of broadly expanded socialist competition, mobilization of the workers’ creative activity, broad implementation of new techniques and progressive technology, mechanization and automation of production, and scientific organization of labor, the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, Council of Ministers of the USSR, All-Union Central Council of Trade Unions, and Central Committee of the All-Union Leninist Communist League of Youth hereby announce with pride that, due to the Workers’ and Engineers’ great abilities and spirit, the Five-Year Plan and Socialist Obligation for Female Orgasms has officially been exceeded by over 218% in this calendar year!”

    Spontaneous demonstrations of solidarity and expressions of pure soviet feeling are scheduled for 7:00 p.m. this Friday.

    (The chocolate and battery rations are hereby reduced by 20%.)

  • Alisa

    ‘Battery’? What’s that?

  • Thailover

    Paul Marks wrote,

    “That the evil collectivists who control such things as the New York Times and the rest of the “mainstream media” (such as Hollywood), and the “education system” (most of the schools and universities) are called “liberals” is perhaps the worse abuses of language in our time.”

    It’s intentional Orwellian oposite-speak. The right wing does it too, as in Patriot Act I & II, which erodes personal liberties.

  • […] they were making, was as fake as the better sex under communism that the NYT believes in (but I don’t). Who wouldn’t ‘regret’ spending time with the elephant in the hotel bedroom? […]