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Sega, Bulgaria

Obama, Romney, Communism

By Boiko Lambovski

Translated By Mila Aalexandrova

6 November 2012

Edited by Lydia Dallett

Bulgaria - Sega - Original Article (Bulgarian)

To my surprise, the election of the American president thrills 15-year-old Bulgarians. Unintentionally, I recently overheard a conversation between a group of youngsters who expressed opinions about the vote that took place so far from our country... They see Obama as a good-natured, quite liberal cheerful guy, with whom you could throw a cool party; a modern version of Uncle Sam who knows about rap, space technologies and geopolitical balance. Most of them don’t find Mitt Romney very appealing. He is seen more as a stern teacher inclined to get petty, fastidious and peevish, who would readily dole out punishment measures. Besides, they see him as an unknown type of religious fanatic.

From where do they get all this information? I guess from videos posted on the Internet and short anecdotes they glimpse in between gaming, chatting and other important things.

I really enjoyed listening to their discussion, especially after all the comments I read and heard from our media in regards to the two candidates. Apparently, the election of the most powerful man in the world resonates with people all around the globe due to the crucial political, economic and cultural influence that the U.S. has on shaping the destiny of our planet. There is a certain misbalance in the fact that about 300 million people (those old enough to vote are even less than that) choose the person who will affect the lives of 7 billion — I already wrote an article on that subject. But we haven’t come to the point of holding a world election for a world government, although I believe that this will happen in the future. Besides, the present situation deserves some credit — it is for sure better than the time when a couple of Politburo members used to choose a Chief, or actually a General Secretary, who dictated the lives of half a billion or all the countries under the Warsaw treaty and some satellite nations (China, which always has been a special case, could be excluded).

Do you know what was interesting to me about the discussions we had, besides the childish ones, in regards to the U.S. election? That it reflected the individual worries and concerns tormenting our society. A big portion of our intellectuals, our minorities (including those of sexual orientation) and those with liberal views on international politics publicly favored Obama. They see him as someone who has the guts to withdraw troops from hot spots, as someone who, just like them, has a different color of skin and, first and foremost, as someone who has strength to take from the rich and give to the poor.

From our academics, teachers, journalists, homosexuals, actors and white-collar workers I heard, left and right, expressions of warm feeling toward the Democrats candidate. I didn’t catch that note in regard to Romney, but I know there were some folks who preferred him somewhat indirectly — because of their aversion to Obama’s policies. This slight aversion usually has been defined by resentment toward new and more regulations imposed on small and big companies, disagreement with government intervention in business and possibly the influence these policies may have on our government style.

I read somewhere that the support of American corporations and employers shifted from the Democrats’ candidate to the Republicans’ — while before Obama was their favorite, now Romney won 20 percent more of their vote. Apparently, the business environment at home caught some of that mood as well.

Political extremes, though, here and all over the world, have always been the same — ever since our ape-like ancestors stood up. How could we better organize the human community here on planet Earth? Should we produce separately and distribute collectively, and if possible, equally to all, or should we produce separately and let everyone take as much as his talent, skills, entrepreneurship and hard work allow?

What do we do to make sure that the untalented, unskilled and not hardworking (who somehow are always more) won’t starve and won’t stir turmoil? Let the talented and hardworking give? Give, but only when they want to and as much as they want, no mandate, no obligations.

In simple words, on one side of the spectrum is communism and all communism-like authoritarian regimes. An incontestable power is necessary to redistribute wealth. Even apes follow that principle.

On the other side of the spectrum is the laissez-faire capitalism, the capitalism of the free market going all the way to its beautiful extreme — libertarianism. (By the way, although totally opposed in theory and organically crammed with ugliness in practice, both communism and libertarianism in their ideological apotheosis are beautiful and amazingly benevolent.)

It seems to me that in our country Obama is seen as the one who redistributes more fairly while Romney is someone who readily cuts down the part that belongs to the poor. I’m not saying that this is true. But these are the images we have built, maybe the images between which we would love to choose. Our opinions have been shaped by critics that Obama meddles with business and introduces more and more government, even more communism; by warnings that this is how U.S. freedom shrinks and the world’s freedom shrinks with it. Romney also suffered many critics, including American libertarians, for the measures he proposed.

These are our attitudes. These are the attitudes of the world; they will remain the same in the future. The world is a simple place — everyone wants wealth, peace and harmony. This world is also amazingly complex — everyone sees how wealth, peace and harmony is going to happen in a different way; everyone sees it happening through different means, and finds a different spot to fit in the whole.

I have no idea how we are going to come to agreement on the future and the post-future world order, how we are going to choose a world chief. I foresee, though, the emergence of neo-communist ideas.



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