… and you should too.
Not all the commies, of course. That’s like saying you should love all the Hindu right wing nutjobs in the world rather than just a selected few like Balasaheb Thackeray who are completely geniustastic at coming up with nifty ideas like digging up the cricket pitch in a city where they have nothing to lose on the eve of an international match to give vent to their patriotism. You know, it’s been years but I still think about that stunt sometimes. Simple, cheap, effective and sannu ki!That’s some good shit right there.
But what’s there to love in, say, Praveen Togadia? Does he dig up cricket pitches? Can he draw bad cartoons? Own a throne? Does he appear on national TV in his pajamas, drink in hand? Pffft! Talk about boring.
Similarly, communists in places where they have actual power – what’s to love? They send you to gulags, take away your money, shatter your family, build nuclear weapons, and such. Have you seen Ninotchka? Anybody that happy to buy a pair of silk stockings did not just get off the boat from Utopia. The best they can hope for is a bit part in a James Bond movie. Where they’ll be totally upstaged by some hot girl in a bikini. Really, what’s the point?
But the Indian communist is a commie to love.
The dress – Okay, so all the men look George Fernandes (who I think is actually a socialist but runs around with a whole bunch of communists from what I remember and anyway dresses like them so according to my calculations he counts and since this is my blog and I’m doing the writing, I get to decide) although the younger set seem to be tapping Fab India (which I love, by the way, in case you ever want to buy me gifts).
But the women! I don’t know where they get those handloom sarees but they’re absolutely to die for. Not that I would ever wear them because all cotton sarees have an unfortunate tendency to exaggerate my bottom and if I can resist peer pressure and stay off the weed for fear of what the munchies were going to do to significant bits of my person, I think I can stay off the cotton saree.
Erm… TMI? Just sayin’ – commie style has its drawbacks too. Even if Brinda Karat makes me wish my forehead too resembled a football field so I could wear a giant bindi like that.
The talk – Have you heard them? They’re absolutely miraculous. It’s like half of them are stuck in the 1950s and are fully engaged in the Cold War while the rest never graduated from freshman year of college. Take any five communist politicians you know (or however many you know although this only really works if you know more than one) and imagine them in the most annoying Anthropology / History / Politics / Philosophy class you ever took. Don’t they fit right in?
I guess I should also mention that this only works if you went to a liberal arts college. Otherwise, just take my word for it.
The downside, however, is when they get over it. Not all of them do but some come out on the other side and there is nothing sadder than an ex-Communist. I’ve met a few and they pretty much broke my heart. They seem so defeated and cynical like life has just been one long disappointment and their kids grew up to be cannibals. I’m talking of the older ones, of course, not the super-annoying Communist-for-this-semester kids from college.
The power – They have none. That’s something to love right there. But what happens when they do have power? Well, some pretty fantastic stuff like this thing called “nokku kooli” in Kerala:
Worker’s unions have crossed all limits by making it a practice to demand money for work they are not doing. They call it ‘nokku kooli’, or wages for (just) looking on… The government eventually saw the ludicrous aspect of it—state industry minister Elamaram Kareem, himself a trade unionist, intervened and stopped it. There is no guarantee, though, that it won’t be revived.
You know what made that paragraph for me? The use of the word “eventually”. Love it!
Actually, I would like to start an International Nokku Kooli Movement. It would allow those of us with a lot of curiosity and not enough skill to observe the jobs that interest us and turn it into a full time career. Like auditing a class, except in real life and you’d get paid for it. Dream job, totally.
The sentiment – Religious people pretty much have the rest of the world beat when it comes to taking offense except in one specific scenario: when America says something. No, wait – didn’t the jihadis win that round? Well, okay but the commies come in a respectable second! Take for instance this latest “controversy” surrounding President Bush’s remarks about the global food crisis. Here’s what he said:
So, for example, just as an interesting thought for you, there are 350 million people in India who are classified as middle class. That’s bigger than America. Their middle class is larger than our entire population…And when you start getting wealth, you start demanding better nutrition and better food. And so demand is high, and that causes the price to go up.
When deconstructed from Bush-lingo, you realize that he’s actually talking about a rather complex problem centered around food politics within the United States. And if you dug deep enough you’d know he (or perhaps somebody in his administration) understands that this is connected to the power crisis and America’s attempt to turn to biofuel. Taken at face value, however, you’d think he was asking China and India to eat less and starve more. But why would you take Bush’s words at face value after seven years of hearing him speak?
Unless you’re an Indian politician and a communist in particular. In which case, Christmas came early. As long as somebody cares.
The by-products – They make interesting movies. If you’re not watching Bengali and Malayalee movies, especially of the vintage Communist era from the 50s to the 70s, you’re missing out.