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    “… they have food specifically made for cats in America? What a country!”

    “… they have food specifically made for cats in America? What a country!”

    Having spent a fair amount of time in the late 1970s and early 1980s studying and traveling in the Soviet Union (where all goods were moved to market on roads paid for by the government, too), I really appreciate both the humor and substance of this post by Karoli, 34 glorious, American years:

    In 1977, the year I was born and the year my father, his mother, his aunt and many other Jews left the Soviet Union (my mother and I left in 1978), the Soviet propaganda machine began circulating a rumor. It went, roughly: life in America is so terrible that the old people eat cat food.

    This was…perplexing.

    People didn’t quite get it: they have food specifically made for cats in America? What a country!

    A lot of things about America remained beyond their comprehension….

    It’s hard for Americans, even the ones who see America’s greatness and love this country for it, to understand the lack of opportunity that my family left. As Communism retreats into the rear-view mirror of history it’s easy to gloss over the everyday ways that Communism is meant to crush the individual and make everyone equal–equally poor, equally scared, equally hopeless.

    If you’ve always lived in a country where companies make food specifically for cats then you’ve known an abundance that my family couldn’t even begin to imagine while they waited to be free. They wanted to say and do whatever they wanted, to live freely, to be allowed to earn as much money as they could, to keep their family safe from murderous ideologies and monster rulers. They just wanted the chance. Success isn’t guaranteed to anyone, and they knew this, but only if you come from a land of opportunity do you ever imagine that it’s even possible.

    This year marks 34 years that I’ve lived in America. Even in the toughest times, in its darkest days, the times where we all might feel pessimistic about our collective future, we’re all so blessed to be here. On each July 20th I remember exactly how blessed.

    (forgot where I saw this article, now I remember, ohiochili in the Tip Line)

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    BannedbytheGuardian | July 25, 2012 at 6:24 am

    Russia spent the 20th century under unimaginable burdens .

    It survived.

    History has not ended. Those forces will return at any time anywhere.


       
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      WarEagle82 in reply to BannedbytheGuardian. | July 25, 2012 at 8:14 pm

      Those “forces” still own and run Russia. There may have been a very brief window to allow true democratic reforms to take hold in Russia but it didn’t happen. The KGB still runs Russia…


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