Pavlik Morozov and the Age of Obama

Soviet folklore provides a lesson to be learned with regard to healthcare and the stifling of dissent

By Samuel Fain
America’s Right

One of the most notable and recognizable characters throughout official Soviet folklore was a thirteen-year-old boy named Pavlik Morozov, a name which became legendary immediately after the events that lead to his fame transpired.

As time has passed by the indirect consequences of his actions affected millions of people in a very direct way — Pavlik, in life and in death, truly influenced several generations of Soviet people. Unfortunately, it starts to influence ours, as well. Here is a short version of his simple story:

Pavlik Morozov lived in a small impoverished village in Russia in the family of Trofim Matrosov, a Red Partisan fighter who, after the Russian Civil War, became a chairman of the local Soviet (in this sense, something akin to a Village Council). Eventually, Pavlik’s father left the family as well as his official post, having remarried and moved out with his new wife. Shortly thereafter, in 1931, Trofim was arrested, tried and convicted of falsifying official documents, fraternizing with the enemies, helping the Kulaks, and more. Those charges have been revealed to be patently false, but that is irrelevant. What is relevant, however, is that the bogus charges against Trofim Matrosov were brought up by his son, Pavlik, then aged 13, who also provided most of the testimony.

Most historians believe that Trofim was finally executed in a labor camp in 1932. Several months after the trial of his father, Pavlik and his eight-year-old brother, Fedor, were found dead in a nearby forest. Stabbed to death, both of them. Pavlik’s grandfather, grandmother and cousin were rounded up, tried, convicted and sentenced to execution by a firing squad.

What followed was a perfect example of Soviet myth-making extravaganza. Pavlik Morozov was made into an official martyr. Countless articles and books were written about him. Sergei Eisenstein–of Battleship Potemkin fame–directed a movie about him. An opera was written about him. School textbooks were full of stories about him, and songs were sung in his honor. Pavlik was portrayed as a young pioneer and young Communist (he almost certainly had not been either) who courageously went against his own family risking certain death, to expose his “counter-revolutionary” father’s crimes.

The official propaganda made him into a hero who chose the good of the society over his family ties. Soviet pupils were taught to emulate him, and he was viewed as an example of a perfect Soviet child. Schools were named after him. Monuments to him were built. Children swore allegiance to his ideals. He was a hero. Every child was expected to report on his parents, if he or she suspected them in disagreeing with the State policies.

Years passed. Stalin’s age came to a close. In the relative privacy of their kitchens, Soviet people slowly started reevaluating some of their history. By the time I was growing up at the end of Brezhnev’s rule and up to Gorbachev’s Perestroyka, Pavlik Morozov ceased being a hero to be emulated by most people. Reporting on one’s family or friends’ dissent from the official Party line has firmly passed into the realm of things that honorable human beings simply do not do.

Far from being the epitome of heroism, the name “Pavlik Morozov” became a common name for a despised rat. It became a byword in the Russian language to the same degree “Benedict Arnold” is in the American English.

Officially, of course, things changed slower. Well into Gorbachev’s years, the State still implicitly expected people to report on each other. However, even the Soviet Union’s political apparatus stopped propagandizing children betraying their parents, friends ratting out friends. Even the Communist Party adopted these elementary basics of human decency.

Enter the era of Barack Obama.

According to precious few news accounts, the White House recently requested that its supporters forward, to the Obama Administration, any e-mail messages and Web sites that are critical of the president’s health care plan. This, from an official White House Web blog entry entitled “Facts Are Stubborn Things”:

There is a lot of disinformation about health insurance reform out there, spanning from control of personal finances to end of life care. These rumors often travel just below the surface via chain emails or through casual conversation. Since we can’t keep track of all of them here at the White House, we’re asking for your help. If you get an email or see something on the web about health insurance reform that seems fishy, send it to flag@whitehouse.gov.

If this short paragraph sounds chilling, that is because it should. Imagine what would have happened had Richard Nixon or George W. Bush come out asking people to send the Government copies of private correspondence critical of their plans. Nixon came close enough by asking that photographs be taken of leftists protesting the Vietnam War, yet the program was stopped as unconstitutional by the United States Supreme Court. Yet this Most Ethical Administration Ever sees nothing wrong in calling on its supporters to report their friends and family if they happen to vocally disagree with the Administration’s views on health care.

What happened to the concept of freedom of political speech in our country? How could it happen that those few major news outlets that reported on this latest Obama propaganda blitz fail to even mention the report-your-friend’s-email-to-us aspect of it? How come it took Sen. John Cornyn, a Republican from Texas, to bring the nation’s attention to this outrage? The very lack of interest in this story in the media is telling.

It is an oppressive government that has such a need to monitor and eventually try to control the thoughts of its population. It is an oppressive government that feels threatened by a free flow of information, especially if that information is critical of it. It is an oppressive government that encourages its citizens to report on their family, friends and neighbors, if they disagree with the State’s positions.

However, a population that submits to such encroachments on its freedom of expression deserves an oppressive government. A population that participates in them deserves being manipulated, controlled and treated like sheep.

People like Pavlik Morozov, who came from a background of serfdom, who had never known the feeling of liberty, who as young children had only been indoctrinated into the supremacy of the State over everything else and nothing more, those are the people who deserve pity. Free people who surrender their freedom deserve nothing but contempt.

The public response to this NKVD-style politics from the Obama Administration, as well as the future of the Democratic Party’s statist reforms will soon show which kind of a population the American citizenry has become. We will see if the spirit of the Land of the Free is still alive in this country, or if we have been turned into the nation of Pavlik Morozovs.

—————
Samuel Fain is a software engineer who left socialism only to find it again, emigrating from the Soviet Union in the early 1990s only to end up in Massachusetts upon arriving in the United States. Sam has since relocated to southern New Hampshire, the “Live Free or Die” state, where he lives with his wife. Sam wrote a few pieces for America’s Right within months of its inception, and began again in February 2009.

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Comments

  1. Gail B says:

    Shredding the United States Constitution has never bothered Obama/Soetoro before. Why should defying a U.S. Supreme Court ruling bother him now.

    The problem is that he (legally) cannot use the information and he cannot delete the emails because he prohibited from doing so, too.

    But I get your point, and it doesn't make me feel ANY better about Obama/Soetoro or his regime.

  2. Bodenzee says:

    I once had a neighbor who was the director of a large IRS district. I recall him telling me that it was custmary to examine the "reporter."

    Often the one reporting yielded the bigger prize.

    Perhaps those e-mailing "flag" should think twice

  3. Anonymous says:

    Brilliant commentary!

    What I find interesting is the fact they can't claim to have been misrepresented in their intentions. "Rumors which often travel just below the surface via chain emails or casual conversations": What does that really mean? They are not talking about politicians or words spoken in public forums, but those private conversations we have around the dinner table which are often overheard by our children. They are talking about those emails we send to our closest friends and family members when sitting alone in front of our computer. This is deeply personal, our innermost feelings, individual worries, and private concerns we choose to share with those we care about and trust the most. There is nothing "fishy" about it and to consider it as such is an attempt to create division within our own families! Outrage is the only acceptable response!!

  4. Anonymous says:

    Thank you for sharing.

  5. Jennifer says:

    I think if Obama wants to find out the disinformation being presented at these meetings we should certainly give it to him. Lt's start with this one…"Congressmen and women keep saying that this bill will not lead to a single payer healthcare system. Would you please tell them to start being honest and give up on the fact they have been caught in a lie and this bill is designed to end private healthcare as stated in your speeches throughout the cam,paign."

    Sincerely,
    Pissed off constituent

  6. Amy says:

    The sad thing is that so many Americans do not even recognize the dangers you have pointed out.

    I like to visit other large sites where the readership is more varied than here just to see what people think.

    John Cornyn's letter was posted along with the info from the White House site asking us to turn in our friends and neighbors. I was appalled by the fact that so many liberals have no problem with it at all. They believe that this is exactly what needs to be done to rid us of the evil, racist, backward conservatives that have destroyed our nation, in their warped opinion.

  7. Uncle Rick says:

    I am considering emailing the following, although I'd better check with my wife first. She might just be too scared:

    As a patriotic American always willing, even eager, to cooperate with the White House in its effort to improve life in our country, I feel it is my duty to report myself and most people I know as being critical of the Congress' proposed health care legislation. You know, the 1018-page bill?

    However, we are not critical as a result of 'disinformation'; rather, we are opposed to the actual contents of the bill, which was created by your party without any input sought from the other members of Congress.

    As it turns out, most of them, including the leading figures of your party in the Congress, have not actually read a single word of the bill. I have not read the entire thing (I've got a real job, a family to raise, etc.), but I have read some of it. It's a real disaster, I've got to tell you. Have you read it? No? Well then, maybe we really don't count as enemies of the state. Or do we? Please let me know.

  8. Anonymous says:

    This is ironic to the point of scary. I will pass this along to my friends and family. Any lefty that reads this should take notes. Eventually something should strike a nerve and sink in about their leader.

  9. Rix says:

    Ratting out one's neighbor is not necessary "socialist" by itself; it can also be a sign that people trust their authorities. In Germany – arguably the most law abiding country on Earth, even after its rabid Islamization – reporting all suspicious facts always was, and still is, a behavioral norm. In a perverted sense, that's our case: liberals are not forced to persue the notorious link, they just honestly believe that Obama is on their side. And he sure is – it is just his goals that are different.

  10. Let us move forward says:

    Orly Taitz stated on the TV political satire show that Obama is the next Stalin. It is true that like Stalin, Obama is paranoid/thin skinned and he (or members of his administration) WANTS power. Witness the power grabs: buying banks, auto industry, ACORN to do census, the example here that reaches into our personal lives, the FED wants control over all financial business, the use of government power in threats to force compliance with the administration's desires. Obama's current overwhelming concern is getting reelected in 2012 and he even said so on national TV about February. If he is reelected, what then?

    Unlike Stalin, I don't believe that Obama is truly a shrewd politician and is certainly not experienced in government. And, as yet, the most that we may have to face is intimidation with IRS audits and maybe visits from the Secret Service or searches: no gulags. His inexperience may save us, but we can't count on it. He's got 3.5 more years to get it right.

    If you don't know anything about Stalin, maybe you should go read up on him.

    Note on the reelection bid: if any laws are passed requiring that a birth certificate is required as proof that a Presidential candidate is eligible, Hawaii has covered him. A "certification" of live birth has been re-designated as a "certificate" of live birth.

    Found another Obama supporter trick being used on health care at Texas Darlin.
    from Juliet16

    Over 1,000 St. Louis Tea Party Taxpayers showed up at the (obamacare-loving) Russ Carnahan town hall meeting in South St. Louis tonight — but they were LOCKED OUT!

    Meanwhile, the Carnahan staff was sneaking in ACORN/SEIU members in the side door marked “handicapped” —

    SNEAKY…but they were caught on video….

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=–ZJhR3T4aw&eurl=http%3A%2F%2Fgatewaypundit%2Eblogspot%2Ecom%2F2009%2F08%2Fshock%2Dvideo%2Ddems%2Dsneak%2Dunion%2Dthugs%2Dinto%2Ehtml&feature=player_embedded

  11. Samuel Fain says:

    Rix,

    Ratting out one's neighbor is not necessary "socialist" by itself; it can also be a sign that people trust their authorities.
    That's absolutely true, and I know that I left a lot unsaid. I just didn't want to complicate things too much.

    However, I would be the first to admit that the analogy is not completely accurate, and it is also unfair.
    It is unfair to Pavlik Morozov. At least he accused his father of tangible crimes. It was only later in the decade that people were expected to report each other's words or even suspected thoughts. Whatever else the 13-year-old brainwashed delinquent Pavlik is guilty of, he did not go that far.
    The 44th President of the United States did.

  12. Bodenzee says:

    It should come as no surprise that the preponderance of the population don't sense what is happening to them.

    The US education system and the teacher’s union has co-opted the education of our children for at least three generations. When people live in affluence, and don't study and learn history, government (civics) and critical thinking skills you get what we have…a nation ripe for a takeover.

  13. STAFF GERMS says:

    No, Michele Obama does not get paid to serve as the First Lady and she doesn’t perform any official duties. But this hasn’t deterred her from hiring an unprecedented number of staffers to cater to her every whim and to satisfy her every request in the midst of the Great Recession. Just think Mary Lincoln was taken to task for purchasing china for the White House during the Civil War. And Mamie Eisenhower had to shell out the salary for her personal secretary.
    How things have changed! If you’re one of the tens of millions of Americans facing certain destitution, earning less than subsistence wages stocking the shelves at Wal-Mart or serving up McDonal d cheeseburgers, prepare to scream and then come to realize that the benefit package for these servants of Miz Michelle are the same as members of the national security and defense departments and the bill for these assorted lackeys is paid by John Q. Public:
    =0 A
    1. $172,2000 – Sher, Susan (Chief Of Staff)
    2. $140,000 – Frye, Jocelyn C. (Deputy Assistant to the President and Director of Policy And Projects For The First Lady)
    3. $113,000 – Rogers, Desiree G. (Special Assistant to the President and White House Social Secretary)
    4. $102,000 – Johnston, Camille Y. (Special Assistant to the President and Director of Communications for the First Lady)
    5. Winter, Melissa E. (Special Assistant to the President and Deputy Chief Of Staff to the First Lady)
    6. $90,000 – Medina, David S. (Deputy Chief Of Staff to the First Lady)
    7. $84,000 – Lelyveld, Catherine M. (Director and Press Secretary to the First Lady)
    8. $75,000 – Starkey, Frances M. (Director of Scheduling and Advance for the First Lady)
    9. $70,000 – Sanders, Trooper (Deput y Director of Policy and Projects for the First Lady)
    10. $65,000 – Burnough, Erinn J. (Deputy Director and Deputy Social Secretary)
    11. Reinstein, Joseph B. (Deputy Director and Deputy Social Secretary)
    12. $62,000 – Goodman, Jennifer R. (Deputy Director of Scheduling and Events Coordinator For The First Lady)
    13. $60,000 – Fitts, Alan O. (Deputy Director of Advance and Trip Director for the First Lady)
    14. Lewis, Dana M. (Special Assistant and Personal Aide to the First Lady)
    15. $52,500 – Mustaphi, Semonti M. (Associate Director and Deputy Press Secretary To The First Lady)
    16. $50,000 – Jarvis, Kristen E. (Special Assistant for Scheduling and Traveling Aide To The First Lady)
    17. $45,000 – Lechtenberg, Tyler A. (Associate Director of Correspondence For The First Lady)
    18. Tubman, Samantha (Deputy Associate Director, Social Office)
    19. $40,000 – Boswell, Joseph J. (Executive Assistant to the Chief Of Staff to the First Lady)
    20. $36,000 – Armbruster, Sally M. (Staff Assistant to the Social Secretary)
    21. Bookey, Natalie (Staff Assistant)
    22. Jackson, Deilia A. (Deputy Associate Director of Correspondence for the First Lady)

    verification word: kingi
    Michelle: "the King and I"

  14. Dee says:

    I hear that some of the Democrats are going to have "Phone Townhalls", which would allow "more" people to be heard and there would not be a chance for violence or disruption. Having participated in one held by my local Democratic member of the House, the questions are screened by members of his staff. They then forward them to him. My question was never sent to him and I was told to leave a message and he would get back to me. That has never happened. Good luck in getting fair representation in the phone townhall meetings.

  15. Gail B says:

    Rix -

    Click at the top under Contributors and find Samuel Fain's name. Then click on what he has written in the past. You will be able to identify with him and agree with him, I believe.

  16. Rix says:

    > The US education system and the teacher’s union has co-opted the
    > education of our children for at least three generations. When
    > people live in affluence, and don't study and learn history,
    > government (civics) and critical thinking skills you get what we
    > have – a nation ripe for a takeover.

    That's God's truth, plain and simple. Thomas Jefferson was right when he warned us: "If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be."

    That's where the efforts must be directed: exorcising the school system, district by district, from the union blight and its buddy-protection policies and self-serving curriculums. Most schools are locally financed and thus can be locally controlled. This is a winning cause: everyone but the craziest of liberals want better education for their children.

  17. Anonymous says:

    Not to be missed video of BO telling us to shut up and get out of the way.

    http://www.breitbart.tv/obama-dont-want-the-folks-who-created-the-mess-to-do-a-lot-of-talking/

    How incredibly unpresidential! Just how much lower can he bring the office??

  18. 1600 TRANSYLVANIA AVE says:

    Anon at 1:42, it's at rock bottom.

  19. Anonymous says:

    Sadly, I lived through Morozov era, where children were afraid of their parents and the parents of their children. The irony is, I run away from that system and after 30 years, it looks like, as we use to say: You run away from the devil and run into the hell.

  20. garret says:

    It's the "protesters" shouting down town hall meetings thereby preventing any discussion who are stifling dissent.

  21. Pole & 18th-21st Street Block Watch says:

    The "flag" is the same as Bush's "tips" http://www.wsws.org/articles/2002/jul2002/tips-j22.shtml

    This is out of sheer arrogance on Obama's part. He thinks he is so almighty and so popular that nobody will question whether this is wrong or right, he truly feels he is the savior and above the law. His comrades will help him locate anyone not for him and ultimately "racist". I had no idea a black president would inspire such delusion. No matter what the policy if you are against it, you are a racist. It ends debate and discussion in its tracks. And it makes me sick.

  22. Anonymous says:

    Rix:

    According to my readings, I have found that our educational system was infiltrated by Prussian, German, and British socialists near the turn of the century (1900). The Fabian Society sent plants over and called them SSI (Society of Socialists International). They were put into all levels of the educational system to infiltrate and brainwash both students AND faculty. They successfully won over the educators, and voila! This is what we have come to…

    They were very clever to start with the impressionable minds of youth, and the idiocy of so-called "intellectuals" (faculty).

    I do know that although our schools are primarily locally funded, they do depend on federal funding to supplement, which puts them under the thumb of the feds and their regulations.

    Also, there is a program called "International Baccalaureate" or "IB" that is for the best and brightest, kind of like an AP program. This program is being added to many schools, and is very esteemed in the public school community. The problem is that it is simply a progressive and globalist brainwashing tool. One of their "mission statements" is to help create good "WORLD CITIZENS". The curriculum is rife with environmentalism, multi-culturalism, and UN propaganda! The sovereignty and goodness of America is de-emphasized.
    And the sad thing is, most parents who aren't informed don't even know that this is happening…they are just flattered that their child has been selected to be in it.

    How do I know this? My child was IN the program. When I finally did my own research (after having an uneasiness and suspicions), I pulled him out immediately.

    This scares and disturbs me immensely! Our best and brightest are not going to learn true history and will be willing tools for the progressive movement.

    What to do?

    Lisa in TX

  23. Rix says:

    Lisa:
    Thank you! Even though both my daughters are in public schools, I know preciously little of how those schools operate. Every bit of knowledge helps. I fervently hope that a politician will rise someday – and soon, too! – on the right with the balls to sweep politics out of our education system. Otherwise, we have already lost.

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