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The Political Kleptokrat

04 Feb 2005 - 00:00

by DORIN TUDORAN - February 5th 2005
"Let’s not talk about communism anymore. The communism was just an idea; <>", Boris Ieltin confesses. The Tsar Boris has drunk a little bit too much, I think.

"Communism is the Soviet power, plus the electrification of the entire country", Vladimir Ilici Lenin proclaims. He is mistaking. "The communism is in conflict with mother nature", Ernest Renan believes. He is right. Don’t you believe me? Listen to what Frank Zappa is saying: "The communism doesn’t last, because people like to posses".

"Communism is not love. Communism is just a hammer we use to crash our enemy", Mao Tze-Tung assails. He is cynical, but right in the same time. "Even if I don’t see communism as a bad thing", Whoopi Goldberg profoundly thinks. She is cynical too, but she is not right. Hollywood’s specialty is fiction, not reality.

"For us, in Russia, communism is a dead dog. For many people in the Occident, communism is still a living lion", Alexander Soljienitin writes. He is right. "Who should you feel more pity for? For a writer seized by the policemen who also gag him or for a writer living a total freedom who does not have anything more to say?" - Kurt Vonnegut wonders. He is really "confuse", isn’t it? This is the difficult part of having so many options.

"The crusade against communism was more imaginary than the ghost of the communism itself", A. J. Taylor says. I really do not have an opinion for this phrase. I need some time to think it over. "Communism destroys democracy. But democracy can destroy communism as well", Andre Malraux believes. I do not any more time for this - he is right.

"Let’s not talk about communism anymore. The communism was just an idea; <>", Boris Ieltin confesses. The Tsar Boris has drunk a little bit too much, I think. "Communism is the corruption of a dream about justice", Adlai E. Stevenson writes. And he is partially right. By the way, while the dream went away, the corruption is enjoying every day, becoming more and more great and solid.

Many things are wrong about the post-communist countries, but there is nothing more murderous than the corruption hunting them. Professor Robert Klitgaard is right when offering the formula of corruption: "monopole + discretionary power - responsibility". It is the exact recipe that transformed the frowning communist ideokrats into filthy, lousy kleptokrats over night ("ideo" - referring to the idea; "klepto" - Greek term for "to steal"; "kratos" - Greek term for power).

Kleptomania is a mental disease. Kleptocracy is not. It is something different. A kleptomaniac "doesn’t steal things for their immediate usage or for their value", a shrink explains us. This is what a kleptokrat is doing. Kleptomania is individual. Kleptocracy is individual and collective as well. It is hard to believe that a group of kleptomaniacs could build up a party, to commit electoral frauds or to use the natural reserves as their own banking accounts. The kleptokrats can do that. The kleptomaniacs are unorganized beings. The kleptokrats are excellent organizers.

Could the political kleptokrat be the main character that this extended painful hangover, also known as the post-communist era, produced?

Translation by SORIN BALAN
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