I’d laugh more, but The People’s Cube is predicting the future. The beginning of the piece is about how the author moved from the former USSR to the US, and how the jokes didn’t translate because of the wild differences between the US and the USSR. I studied the former Soviet Union in college, and many of my professors and instructors had lived under the USSR’s rule and managed to escape one way or another. The “great ideas” of communism and socialism are reprehensible, and a turn away from self-reliant liberty back to the thousands of years of human history in which man has lived subjugated by tyrannical rulers and governments. It is very sobering to realize that we live today in an anomaly, where the mass of men are for the most part free… for now.
With our fundamental transformation firmly underway, things are beginning to change, and the jokes are beginning to fit.
The six contradictions of socialism in the USSR
- There is no unemployment – yet no one is working.
- No one is working – yet the factory quotas are fulfilled.
- The factory quotas are fulfilled – yet the stores have nothing to sell.
- The stores have nothing to sell – yet people’s homes are full of stuff.
- People’s homes are full of stuff – yet no one is happy.
- No one is happy – yet the voting is always unanimous.
Already in America I discovered that most of my old Soviet jokes didn’t work in translation. It wasn’t so much the language difference as the fact that Americans had no first-hand knowledge of a totalitarian government, ideological uniformity, and shameless propaganda.
But that is changing. The more America “progresses” back to the Soviet model, the more translatable the old Soviet jokes become.
Let’s see how an old Soviet joke can be rewritten into a new American joke.
The six contradictions of socialism in the United States of America
- America is capitalist and greedy – yet half of the population is subsidized.
- Half of the population is subsidized – yet they think they are victims.
- They think they are victims – yet their representatives run the government.
- Their representatives run the government – yet the poor keep getting poorer.
- The poor keep getting poorer – yet they have things that people in other countries only dream about.
- They have things that people in other countries only dream about – yet they want America to be more like those other countries.
There’s more where it came from – or where we’re going, whichever the case may be.
The six contradictions are worth re-reading, as the whole post and the whole thread are also very worth reading.
A few others are less funny as they become truer:
“Thanks to Obama we have all the clean energy we need!”
“Yes, but now we have no electricity or gasoline.”
These videos aren’t on the People’s Cube post, but should be:
Update: I just spent an hour or so reading a lot of Soviet/FSU/USSR jokes and stumbled on this one, from “Russian and Ukranian Jokes in English“:
- Why do authorities in United States respect their people?
- Because their people can easily and legally buy fire-arms.
It’s perhaps the only heartening thing in the entire slew of jokes that are otherwise depressing, and given that it’s the emergency last-ditch dump-the-warp-core option, it’s not very cheery either.