29 December 2008

Ford's Inferno: Communist Propaganda From the 50s

Another item of interest located in my mother's basement (no, I don't live there!), that I felt was worth sharing. My Great-Grandmother had some McCarthy-era leaflet from 1957 designed to warn Michiganders about the insipid communist threat, and it was an actual excerpt from a Soviet textbook discussing America. It talked about how the auto plants in Michigan were soul-sucking capitalist machines hell-bent on the destruction of the American proletariat. Michael Moore, eat your heart out, because this propaganda is way more professional. Click to enlarge:

Some money quotes include:

"America is supposed to be the land of individualism. But Fordism is the thing that capitalists have established in many parts of the country, and want to make universal. They want a land of robots, who will work themselves out by the time they are forty and then go off somewhere and die."
"The Soviet workers get vacations of a month with full pay; they have no fear of unemployment or accident"
"Here you pass through an inferno of fear. You can see it in the eyes of these men. They know that any minute they may find themselves in the streets without any work."
The quality of life for the American autoworker was far better than any Soviet, as people from the impoverished South and overseas (like my ancestors) flocked to Detroit to earn a decent wage in the auto factories. It's odd how leftist propaganda during the cold war was incredibly analogous to official Soviet propaganda. Just saying.

4 comments:

Bag Blog said...

After my dad died, we found a box of old newspapers. Each newspaper was wrapped with care, because they were important headlines like "Victory in Japan" and "Nixon Resigns."

Shea said...

In a way, the southern states are still suffering from the civil war. They've never regained the prosperity they once had. Lincoln had a plan for reconstruction, but it was unpopular, and when he was murdered, reconstruction didn't happen. The poorest states are southern, and the majority of people that live there still have great resentment hoping for the day that the south rises again to take her place of glory and prosperity, of course minus the institution of slavery.
That's an interesting document. The horrible working conditions were the whole reason that the UAW was formed, but when that was written the working conditions had improved. Everyone is always trying to put a spin of propoganda on things in one way or another, for personal, political, gain.
Feel like also, I should apologize, some of my earlier comments a little angry, I've had a lot of suppressed anger lately, so I appologize.

LT Nixon said...

Shea,

I didn't notice that you had any angry comments, but don't feel like you have to keep things bottled up inside when you come here.

Anonymous said...

Shea, I didn't notice that you had any angry comments either. This may be one of the safest places to have a difference of opinion. I've noticed that most people tend to listen, may not agree, but they listen.

and thanks for that LT Nixon.

Liz