Archive for Bad Things

Totalitarianism

Posted in Wilfredo with tags , , , on September 26, 2008 by mothstache

As I recently read, totalitarianism is bad.  Pravda, perhaps under Stalin’s influence, denounced Shostakovich’s /Lady Macbeth/ as “coarse, primitive and vulgar.”  The point, as usual: shame on you, Joe Stalin.  What’s the full syllogism?  As I see it, we have two candidates.  First possibility:

(1) Limiting the freedom musicians is bad.

(2) The Soviet Union limited the freedom of Shostakovich, a musician.

(3) The Soviet Union was bad.

However, if this were what people really had in mind, I’d expect to see a lot more stories of the following form: “X’s music sucked.  Experts today agree: it was pretty shitty.  The Soviet union banned it saying it was too shitty to allow.  But, still, banning music is bad, no matter the quality of the music.”

But what I generally hear is stuff like: “Shostakovich’s music was super sweet.  Pravda didn’t really get it, so they banned it.”  Which suggests the following syllogism:

(1) Shostakovich’s music is sweet.

(2) The Soviet Union didn’t think so.

(3) The Soviet Union lacked taste.

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