Everything Has Gone Green: The Consequences of Googling Murray Bookchin

In one of the few interviews he received, Roger Mudd openly said “it does stretch credibility to think that a Jewish ex-mayor of a suburban town can make it.” T
If anyone's wondering, here's the link to that interview. You learn about this insanely obscure figure from it. Well, insanely obscure outside of Irvine, California...
 
Just got finished watching 1992 and 1993 and I love it so much! Stefano Accorsi's character is really interesting to me.
Agreed. Accorsi is a great actor, and Notte is really an amazing charachter. Apart from all his scheming, they also gave him a really interesting background story, the arc about his father with the memories of his communist youth is really good.
P. S: Miriam Leone is the most beautiful woman on Earth, period.

How did Agran win this? I mean, he really seems a minor candidate and significantly more on the left of his opponents. Which coalition of voters did he built? How he convinced him? (not a critic, I'm just curious)
 
Wait, a democratic socialist won!? WOW!

Shouldn't the Red Scare be enough scare enough voters? Are there plans for an economic democracy (worker buyouts, worker self-management, cooperatives, employee ownership) as an agenda/category of socialization? In the 1980's, it seemed that a community/worker buyout of Detroit firms and car factories was on the horizon as corporations left the city, and a nationwide movement for economic democracy was there, building an economy based on Mondragon.
 
Agreed. Accorsi is a great actor, and Notte is really an amazing charachter. Apart from all his scheming, they also gave him a really interesting background story, the arc about his father with the memories of his communist youth is really good.
For some reason, I always want to root for him even though he's probably the most morally objectionable of the major characters.

Also, I'm so glad that Professor Miglio was a real guy, because I want to use him for something now
How did Agran win this? I mean, he really seems a minor candidate and significantly more on the left of his opponents. Which coalition of voters did he built? How he convinced him? (not a critic, I'm just curious)
Shouldn't the Red Scare be enough scare enough voters
Agran is obviously a footnote IOTL, but the later success of Mayor Pete does show that an obscure mayor can emerge as a top-tier candidate. He really got unlucky with the media coverage of him, but he received a really positive response wherever he was invited to a forum or interviewed. Even IOTL he was able to poll ahead of Brown and Harkin while approaching Tsongas' numbers. With something to completely shake the contest up like the Clinton 60 Minutes POD, the media narratives that worked against him could have easily pushed him in the other direction.

Now, in the general election, he goes with a very different strategy to Clinton. Instead of running as a moderate to get a broad base of support, Agran recognizes that with Perot, he only needs a much smaller percentage of the vote to win. His goal is to bring out as much Democratic turnout as possible, who are heavily motivated by his promises of a post-Cold War vision. These margins are especially good in the cities and towns that Agran focused on for his development plans.
Are there plans for an economic democracy (worker buyouts, worker self-management, cooperatives, employee ownership) as an agenda/category of socialization?
I believe you're thinking in the right direction....
given that everything german is very en vogue ittl, that is one thing that the americans will want to copy
In the 1980's, it seemed that a community/worker buyout of Detroit firms and car factories was on the horizon as corporations left the city, and a nationwide movement for economic democracy was there, building an economy based on Mondragon.
Oh wait actually? Man that would be interesting to explore in a Ted Kennedy 1980 or just a general no Reagan scenario. Would love some links about that!
 
Oh wait actually? Man that would be interesting to explore in a Ted Kennedy 1980 or just a general no Reagan scenario. Would love some links about that!
Sorry it happened mostly in the second half of the 1970's, but there was movements for community buyouts of factories especially in Youngstown, Ohio 1977 where Gar Alperovitz was involved and asked Jimmy Carter for the funds to buy and upgrade/modernize the factory, and this:

A Socialist Oasis In Detroit In The 1970s?


Ronald Reagan's speech is framed with capitalist rhetoric which is employee ownership, but without workplace democracy or worker ownership. Democratic employee stock ownership is a possibility, leap up from pure ESOPs we have today:


Here's a scholarly talking about this I got from JSTOR, published in 1984 entitled Recent Calls for Economic Democracy: https://www.jstor.org/stable/2380553?seq=1

Most important is this passage:

Albert Gallatin, secretary of the treasury under Thomas Jefferson and James Madison, expressed well the basic idea: "The democratic principle on which this nation was founded should not be restricted to the political process but should be applied to the industrial operation as well"
It's just as American as anything of the kind. It's a kind of socialization of production, that involves worker cooperatives, and a category of socialization among nationalization, municipalization, as tools for worker's control, according to Kautsky's 1923 book, Labour Revolution. David Ellerman is the important source of this... and as of 2020 according to an article of Gary Dorrien, would be considered a democratic socialist, in which economic democracy is the definition.

Another thing you could go for, is the possibility of industrial policy to restructure and remake industries, manufacturing and enterprises for new ones in compensation/way forward for the Midwest and Rust Belt areas to continue economic prosperity, as proposed by the progressive Robert Reich in 1982.

Harvard Business Review

Why the U.S. Needs an Industrial Policy

by Robert B. Reich
From the Magazine (January 1982)

DRAFTING A DEMOCRATIC INDUSTRIAL PLAN

Aug. 28, 1983
From the New York Times.

It was considered an option, but neoliberalism have won already. Industrial policy was the last ditch/last resistance for an alternative, at least, slow pace to neoliberalism for everyone to adapt to and make its effects painless.
 
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Was not expecting President Agran, but it's great to see him here. What did the map look like?
genusmap.php

Mayor Larry Agran (D-CA) / Representative Mickey Leland (D-TX): 322 EVs, 37.78%
President George H.W. Bush (R-TX) / Vice President Dan Quayle (R-IN): 203 EVs, 33.81%
Businessman Ross Perot (I-TX) / Ambassador Jeane Kirkpatrick (I-OK): 13 EVs, 27.42%

Did you mean 1972?
no it was a reference to alan keyes' end of history

No I did mean 1972, thank you for that
 
Sweden, West Germany, Netherlands, and Denmark were the primary candidates for having self-management/economic democracy, via socialization of worker/trade union pension funds in their economies.

The Meidner Plan for Europe, except it doesn't happen in one country. It was only half-assed implemented in Sweden with okay results.
 
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Making Democratic Socialism American

Harrington, King and the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA)
The democratic socialist Left entered a period of confusion, debating the fiscal crisis of the state and two academic cottage industries called “market socialism” and “analytical Marxism.” DSOC merged in 1982 with a New Left organization, the New American Movement, to form Democratic Socialists of America (DSA). There was no mistaking the symbolism of DSA. Both of the merging organizations sought to heal the leftover rift between the Old Left and New Left. By 1982 the Leftists who knew what they believed belonged to an ascending cultural Left that privileged race, gender, and sexuality, building on the social movements of the ‘60s. Meanwhile a long-departed Italian Communist leader won a tremendous vogue for contending that the Left wrongly cedes the entire cultural realm to the Right.

This is something you might like to explore, since the cultural Left replaced the old-style, working class leftism and relegating battles to the universities instead. You might want to also do something about repealing many acts that are anti-Union including Taft-Hartley and many others, and Right to Work ought to be stopped.

I put in italics market socialism and analytical Marxism, this could be combined and coexist with economic democracy, since it is the same meaning, except market socialist is expressly more socialistic. That is something you might like to explore.
 
A Jewish, socialist, ex-mayor running for President where does that sound familiar? Except you know it's an alternate history when (1) he actually wins the nomination and election and (2) his name is Larry Agran, not Bernie Sanders.
 
Part XIV: Front Line Assembly: Canadian Politics
Front Line Assembly: Canadian Politics

For most of Canadian history, the Liberals had been the dominant party of government. With a natural base of support in French Canada, the Grits had been able to pivot left, right, and center to form a governing majority. There were brief challenges to this dominance, but excluding Joe Clark’s brief tenure as Prime Minister, the Liberals had held power for 21 years before Brian Mulroney occupied 24 Sussex. A wealthy Quebec-based lawyer, Mulroney’s natural showmanship and charisma brought Canada its largest majority government in history. The secret to this victory was the dawn of the Mulroney coalition; traditional Tories in Atlantic Canada and Ontario, Western populists outraged by Trudeau’s energy policies, and nationalist Quebecers looking to renegotiate the constitution.

This broad-based coalition was inevitably going to bring the Tories problems. While they had distracted the public from constitutional issues by focusing the 1988 election on free trade, by the time Mulroney left office, he was the least popular Prime Minister in Canadian history. The swing voters “voting with their wallets” were outraged by the extremely unpopular GST, which Mulroney had to jump through bizarre senate hurdles to get passed. His plans to rewrite the Canadian constitution through the Meech Lake Accord were a failure, and after seeing English Canada reject a deal meant for them, Quebec sovereignty was seen as the only option.

Under normal circumstances, the Liberals would benefit and easily win the election, but they were dealing with the contradictions of their own coalition. After losing the leadership in 1984 and unsuccessful efforts to kick out John Turner in 1986 and 1988, Jean Chrétien finally had a chance to get the job he always wanted. His two biggest support groups came from Quebec and the party’s ”Trudeau faction,” but both were on opposite sides of the Meech Lake debate. When he finally sided with the Trudeau faction and came against Meech, the Francophones branded their former champion a “Judas” and a “traitor for the Anglos.” After rejecting businessman Paul Martin Jr. as a weak candidate, the pro-business wing of the party eventually convinced Ontario Premier David Peterson.

His victory at the convention, while breaking the rule of alternating between Anglophone and Francophone leaders, was a clear bump for the Grits. Peterson was a sharp campaigner, representative of the yuppie generation, and a believer in Free Trade. That being said, cracks formed in his leadership as NAFTA became a pivotal issue and Meech Lake became loathed amongst Anglophones. Peterson might have put Ontario politics behind him to become a national politician, but the stench of the OLP stayed with him. In early 1990, journalists investigating weird campaign contributions stumbled on pandora’s box; the activities of Patti Starr. With over $160,000 of illegal campaign contributions, Starr’s fingers were all over the Liberal cabinet, and while no ministers had committed a crime, a tinge of corruption surrounded Peterson.

Still only 52 and not wanting to be remembered by a landslide defeat, Mulroney put his name forward for UN Secretary General. While the third world seemed upset that the New World Order would be led by a Western secretary general, Bush and Gow threatened to veto any other candidate’s nomination. Don Mazankowski briefly served as Acting Prime Minister, with former PM Joe Clark making a comeback. Being sworn into office in January, Clark almost immediately called for a general election. While he had been a prince across the water type of figure, Clark was in no way a fresh face; for the prairie populist Reform Party, he was the main target of their rage. Clark quickly got himself stuck in a battle with Preston Manning (the two had run against each other for Yellowhead in 1988), distracting both of them for the rising star of 1992.

The New Democrats had been tied or polling ahead with the Tories before Clark’s ascension to power, hoping that a one-more heave approach would allow them to continue their gains from 1984 and 1988. While their longtime leader Ed Broadbent was gone, Audrey McLaughlin inspired voters as the first female party leader. Seizing an opportunity with the formation of the Bloc Quebecois, McLaughlin saw an opportunity to push into Quebec with her popular lieutenant Phil Edmonston. While opposed to Meech, McLaughlin rallied around her support for the province’s “five conditions” and the declaration of Quebec as a distinct society.

While some Western Dippers were worried about McLaughlin’s focus on Quebec, their supporters remained largely loyal despite the rise of the Reform Party. While Manning’s party broke double digits after winning a by-election in 1989, not only did they have to fend off the Tories, but also the National Party of publisher Mel Hurtig. Hurtig’s group was the most anti-NAFTA in the election, but also staunch proponents of economic nationalization to compete against American industry. While a largely unimpressive speaker, the fact that Hurtig got in the debates made him a credible political force.

Ontario was where the Liberals hoped to win the election, but the provincial government had slid in the polls even farther. Peterson’s successor Sean Conway was polling far behind the NDP’s Bob Rae in provincial polls, and the close associations with Peterson and Conway did not help the federal party. In an election where feminism and women’s rights were major issues, accusations of sexual harassment against the former premier prevented the Liberals of having any hope of winning the next election.

The NDP had proven the success of the strategy of slow and steady winning the race - their solid but growing base of support allowed them to go on the offensive when their opponents suffered. With a generous majority, Audrey McLaughlin became Canada’s first female and first NDP Prime Minister, but much like Brian Mulroney, her government would have to walk a fine line between the West, Ontario, and Quebec.

As for the opposition, their future was inconclusive. The Liberals were back to their 1984 numbers, while the Bloc emerged as the second largest party in Quebec. As for the right, Reform pulled ahead of the Tories in terms of seat count while being far behind them in the popular vote. The Nationals were tied with the Tories in Ottawa while not being too far from Reform in terms of percentages. It was going to be a messy battle to see who could pick up the pieces if the NDP failed to deliver.

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Calm Night: 1991 & The New Sovereign States

In the Soviet Union, opposition to Mikhail Gorbachev’s rule was reaching a breaking point. The clock was ticking on whether the New Union Treaty would succeed, and with 78% of the USSR in favor of it, the GKChP were convinced that only “decisive action” could block these dangerous changes. Knowing that Gorbachev was planning to oust the hardliners from their offices, the Gang of Eight made their move when the president was away at his Crimean dasha. Gorbachev was given a simple option by the guards arresting him - declare a state of emergency and resign or face a bullet. Gorbachev refused, taking the second option.

Gennady Yanayev took over and addressed the nation as their new president, being clearly drunk as he reported that Gorbachev was killed by a “radical Lativan sepratist.” What the plotters didn’t account for was Ruslan Khasbulatov, president of the Russian SFSR. A dissident communist economist in the 1980s, Khasbulatov took over the reformist faction of the CPSU after Yeltstin’s unfortunate death.

As tanks went through Moscow, mass citizen protests erupted as they demanded the end of the coup, with the White House being barricaded by civilians and major parts of the Soviet army. Inside the Wihte House, Khasbulatov was able to make calls to world leaders and even Yanayev himself. After several clashes between troops loyal to Khasbulatov and troops loyal to Yanayev, it was clear that the coup was falling apart as Soviet society rose against it.

Upon the resignation of Yanayev, acting Prime Minister and Khasbulatov loyalist Ivan Silayev took over as Acting President, but it was clear whose orders Silayev was taking ahead of the 1992 Sovereign Union presidential election. The remaining coup plotters were arrested, with the exception of Boris Pugo (who killed himself), and KGB Director Vladimir Kryuchkov, who used his friendship with publisher Robert Maxwell to secure his way out of prison. In exchange for his release and a series of KGB documents involving Maxwell conveniently disappearing, Maxwell would secure much needed loans for the Sovereign Union through Prime Minister Gow and Defense Secretary John Tower. Shortly before securing the deals, Maxwell passed away peacefully from a long term illness.

The 1992 Sovereign Union Presidential Election would be a landslide victory for the Independent Candidates Ruslan Khasbultov and his Vice President Alexander Rutskoy (a sop to the Military forces who had supported Ruslan, despite hand wringing from various Democrats) against the remnants of the CPSU lead by Ryzhkov and the bizarrely named Liberal Democratic of the Sovereign Union lead by Right Wing Populist Vladimir Zhirinovsky. Ruslan Khasbulatov’s main aim was to help fix the stagnating Union’s economy and deal with the rising Nationalist movements in the Caucasus. Even Ruslan’s Chechan heritage wouldn’t stop Dzhokhar Dudayev declaring independence in 1991 and after a failure of negotiation, Ruslan would send tanks into the nation in 1993 whilst urging for order from his countrymen. Whilst there would be fighting from Nationalist groups, for the most part fighting was sparse as most citizens trusted their USS leader. Dzhokhar Dudayev would leave the country for Tanai’s Afghanistan and whilst there would guerrilla warfare in the mountains for the years to come, Ruslan Khasbultov had managed to secure his Presidency. Not long afterwards in 1993, he would begin forming the Soyuz Sotsial-Demokratov or Union of Social Democrats, a big tent of Centre Left politicians ranging from Pro-European Liberals like Grigory Yavlinsky to Social Democrats like Gavriil Popov to the seeming Democratic Socialists like Sergey Glazyev.

The SSD would become Ruslan Khasbultov’s base from which he would reform the Post-Soviet USS. The industries would be partially denationalised with some going into Private Hands entirely (like Oil and Gas) while elements like the health services and other items were kept in USS hands. Generally Ruslan would seek support for his ventures from the EU, Scandinavia countries, Britain, and also China. Zhao’s support of the burgeoning nation allowed it to deal with their economic crisis sooner than expected as Russia’s natural resources helped the rapidly industrializing nation.

Meanwhile in the land of USS politics, there would be very little in the way of opposition to Khasbulatov’s reforms. On the Right there was a split between the Dry Economic Conservatism of Russia’s Choice led by Yegor Gaidar and the fiery Right Wing Populism of the Liberal Democratic Party of Vladimir Zhirinovsky.

On the Left the Communist Party would split into the Reformers who joined the SSD or satellite parties and the Traditionalists who squabbled over what strain of Communism they should take, which would eventually allow for Eduard Limonov and his gaggle of National Bolshevik’s to take over. The CPUS would rapidly hemorrhage followers but it’s Soviet Nationalism appealed to many others and Limonov would spend much of his time talking about ‘Slavic Socialism’ on National television.

Despite their controversial image, the NazBols remained one of the strongest political forces in Russia. They were extremely vocal against opening up to the west and despite being totalitarians, opposed the more authoritarian measures of Khasbulatov. In the 1994 legislative elections, the party won a shocking 15% of the vote. While the counterculture novelist Limonov was clearly in control, two other figures emerged in the party; the fascist academic Aleksandr Dugin and punk musician Yegor Letov.

Upon Limonov’s arrest in Yugoslavia for plotting with Seriban nationalists to overthrow the Zizek government, a power struggle emerged. While many thought that Limonov would return, the Sovereign Union’s government was hardly interested in letting him control the opposition and didn’t fight to extradite him back to Russia. Given that the party’s membership were largely young punks, Letov’s faction won control over the Orthodox theocratic Duginites (whose supporters left to ally with Zhrininovsky or Makashov).

Letov’s new control over the NazBols coincided with his ideological conversion to anarchism. This came as a shock, given that he had previously written a book called “I Don’t Believe in Anarchy.” The party was rebranded into The Alternative, losing the fascist imagery. While far more nationalist than most libertarian municipalists, Letov describing himself as an eco-anarchist did briefly cause a stir amongst Bookchinites. On Larry Agran’s beautiful gift of the internet, Bookchinites were frequently referred to as anarcho-fascists by Marxist-Leninists; this tag lasted up until Letov awkwardly aligned himself with the nationalist CPSU.

The CPSU-Alternative alliance would keep the two parties going, allowing Letov to convince enough of the CPSU to join his Alternative organisation allowing him to merge the organisations together. The subsequent Orbona (or Defense) alliance seemed an unlikely fit between ultra-contrarian punks and aesthetic-based Soviet nationalists, though Letov went on to embrace Stalin after aligning with trade unionist Victor Anpilov. Despite Nikolai Ryzhkov being the formal leader of the CPSU, filmmaker Vladimir Bortko appeared frequently as the Communist counterweight to Letov’s demagoguery.

Whilst this occurred Svyatoslav Fyodorov created his Workers Front against what he perceived as Khasbulatov’s lack of reform towards industrial democracy. Despite describing himself as a combination between Ross Perot and Deng Xiaoping, his party rapidly saw entryism from young socialists looking for a home away from the stagnant orders of old. In time this space allowed for the rise of figures like Sergei Kozlovskii, Evgeniy Konovalov, Natalia Magnat and Darya Mitina to later guide the rise of post-Soviet socialist thought in Russia especially as Fyodorov became ill.
 
Nothing To My Name: A New China

In the PRC, paramount leader Zhao Ziyang was in quite a balancing act. Zhao was frequently referred to as the Chinese Gorbachev, but the news coming out of Moscow made him quite cautious. As leader of the PLA, general Yang Shangkun was responsible for keeping Zhao in power. The liberalization of the Chinese economy allowed for the Yang clique of the PLA to control sustainable business interests and crucially gave them enough power to make sure Chinese democracy didn’t go too far.

Opposition to this new direction came from the neo-Maoist youth, who famously protested the Zhaoist reforms in Tiananmen Square, only to be beaten back by the riot police on the orders of Yang. Zhao was looking for a force to counteract the radical New Left, and he turned his eyes towards the Falun Gong, a new religious movement that emerged from the popularity of qigong in the 1980s. Its leader Li Hongzhi was pleased to ally with the CCP in exchange for patronage positions in the government. While Zhao was not pleased with Li’s bizarre and cultish organization, its 70 million followers were crucial allies. Zhao would also work with Qiao Shi to increase the size and spending of China’s moribund Police.

Whilst seemingly done to crack down on China’s Gangsters (a seeming symptom of China’s embrace of Market forces) it was also done to help shore up another force who wasn’t the Army under the control of Party. But Zhao’s grand plan for reshaping China would occur in 1993 in the run up to the 1993 Congressional Elections. The 1993 Congressional Elections would be the first time Non-United Front candidates would be allowed to stand for election, as long as they stood as Independent candidates. Many of the old guard would see this as turning the PRC into a Liberal Democracy and attempts to formulate a coup would begin. This wouldn’t get off the ground as the Police would easily arrest the possible perpetrators.

The 1993-1994 Elections would see the United Front win yet again a majority of over a thousand seats compared to the spratly independents. The independents could be split into three corresponding groups; The Falun Gong would see a couple hundred members gaining seats who would mainly tow the Zhao party line, the Neo-Maoists lead by intellectual Wang Hui who often sided with the ‘Conservatives’ and finally the ‘Democrats’ a gaggle of liberal democratic sorts lead Wei Jingsheng who had been released in an attempt to appease the West, who had an icy relationship with all party lines. But China would seemingly hold and would start aggressively pursuing an economic policy to match.

This would continue with China’s foreign policy, Zhao decided that Hong Kong and Taiwan would work better under the economic umbrella of China instead of it’s Government. This would become the building blocks of Zhao’s friendly neighbour policy which saw China bringing various different countries within its economic order. Anything seen as disestablishing the order would find itself wiped out. An example of this would be North Korea, in the aftermath of Kim-Il Sung’s death in 1994 it seemed his more aggressive son would take charge. Abruptly Kim Jong Un would disappear off the face of the earth and a new ‘Government of National Order’ would take over. Kim would reappear four months later, in a wheelchair with a document saying that no member of the Kim family could become North Korean leader for 20 years. A Year later the Korean Economic Zone would be formed with North and South Korea being united economically with China funding much of the projects that would occur.
 
Gennady Yanayev took over and addressed the nation as their new president, being clearly drunk as he reported that Gorbachev was killed by a “radical Lativan sepratist.” What the plotters didn’t account for was Ruslan Khasbulatov, president of the Russian SFSR. A dissident communist economist in the 1980s, Khasbulatov took over the reformist faction of the CPSU after Yeltstin’s unfortunate death.

As tanks went through Moscow, mass citizen protests erupted as they demanded the end of the coup, with the White House being barricaded by civilians and major parts of the Soviet army. Inside the Wihte House, Khasbulatov was able to make calls to world leaders and even Yanayev himself. After several clashes between troops loyal to Khasbulatov and troops loyal to Yanayev, it was clear that the coup was falling apart as Soviet society rose against it.

Upon the resignation of Yanayev, acting Prime Minister and Khasbulatov loyalist Ivan Silayev took over as Acting President, but it was clear whose orders Silayev was taking ahead of the 1992 Sovereign Union presidential election. The remaining coup plotters were arrested, with the exception of Boris Pugo (who killed himself), and KGB Director Vladimir Kryuchkov, who used his friendship with publisher Robert Maxwell to secure his way out of prison. In exchange for his release and a series of KGB documents involving Maxwell conveniently disappearing, Maxwell would secure much needed loans for the Sovereign Union through Prime Minister Gow and Defense Secretary John Tower. Shortly before securing the deals, Maxwell passed away peacefully from a long term illness.

The 1992 Sovereign Union Presidential Election would be a landslide victory for the Independent Candidates Ruslan Khasbultov and his Vice President Alexander Rutskoy (a sop to the Military forces who had supported Ruslan, despite hand wringing from various Democrats) against the remnants of the CPSU lead by Ryzhkov and the bizarrely named Liberal Democratic of the Sovereign Union lead by Right Wing Populist Vladimir Zhirinovsky. Ruslan Khasbulatov’s main aim was to help fix the stagnating Union’s economy and deal with the rising Nationalist movements in the Caucasus. Even Ruslan’s Chechan heritage wouldn’t stop Dzhokhar Dudayev declaring independence in 1991 and after a failure of negotiation, Ruslan would send tanks into the nation in 1993 whilst urging for order from his countrymen. Whilst there would be fighting from Nationalist groups, for the most part fighting was sparse as most citizens trusted their USS leader. Dzhokhar Dudayev would leave the country for Tanai’s Afghanistan and whilst there would guerrilla warfare in the mountains for the years to come, Ruslan Khasbultov had managed to secure his Presidency. Not long afterwards in 1993, he would begin forming the Soyuz Sotsial-Demokratov or Union of Social Democrats, a big tent of Centre Left politicians ranging from Pro-European Liberals like Grigory Yavlinsky to Social Democrats like Gavriil Popov to the seeming Democratic Socialists like Sergey Glazyev.

The SSD would become Ruslan Khasbultov’s base from which he would reform the Post-Soviet USS. The industries would be partially denationalised with some going into Private Hands entirely (like Oil and Gas) while elements like the health services and other items were kept in USS hands. Generally Ruslan would seek support for his ventures from the EU, Scandinavia countries, Britain, and also China. Zhao’s support of the burgeoning nation allowed it to deal with their economic crisis sooner than expected as Russia’s natural resources helped the rapidly industrializing nation.
Dude, really interesting. It's incredible to think how the destiny of Russia and the Union of Sovereign Soviet Republics project of Gorbachev could have been so radically different even if everything went like IOTL if the president of the RSFSR was someone other than Yeltsin. Khasbulatov is a really fascinating charachter.
On the Left the Communist Party would split into the Reformers who joined the SSD or satellite parties and the Traditionalists who squabbled over what strain of Communism they should take, which would eventually allow for Eduard Limonov and his gaggle of National Bolshevik’s to take over. The CPUS would rapidly hemorrhage followers but it’s Soviet Nationalism appealed to many others and Limonov would spend much of his time talking about ‘Slavic Socialism’ on National television.

Despite their controversial image, the NazBols remained one of the strongest political forces in Russia. They were extremely vocal against opening up to the west and despite being totalitarians, opposed the more authoritarian measures of Khasbulatov. In the 1994 legislative elections, the party won a shocking 15% of the vote. While the counterculture novelist Limonov was clearly in control, two other figures emerged in the party; the fascist academic Aleksandr Dugin and punk musician Yegor Letov.

Upon Limonov’s arrest in Yugoslavia for plotting with Seriban nationalists to overthrow the Zizek government, a power struggle emerged. While many thought that Limonov would return, the Sovereign Union’s government was hardly interested in letting him control the opposition and didn’t fight to extradite him back to Russia. Given that the party’s membership were largely young punks, Letov’s faction won control over the Orthodox theocratic Duginites (whose supporters left to ally with Zhrininovsky or Makashov).

Letov’s new control over the NazBols coincided with his ideological conversion to anarchism. This came as a shock, given that he had previously written a book called “I Don’t Believe in Anarchy.” The party was rebranded into The Alternative, losing the fascist imagery. While far more nationalist than most libertarian municipalists, Letov describing himself as an eco-anarchist did briefly cause a stir amongst Bookchinites. On Larry Agran’s beautiful gift of the internet, Bookchinites were frequently referred to as anarcho-fascists by Marxist-Leninists; this tag lasted up until Letov awkwardly aligned himself with the nationalist CPSU.

The CPSU-Alternative alliance would keep the two parties going, allowing Letov to convince enough of the CPSU to join his Alternative organisation allowing him to merge the organisations together. The subsequent Orbona (or Defense) alliance seemed an unlikely fit between ultra-contrarian punks and aesthetic-based Soviet nationalists, though Letov went on to embrace Stalin after aligning with trade unionist Victor Anpilov. Despite Nikolai Ryzhkov being the formal leader of the CPSU, filmmaker Vladimir Bortko appeared frequently as the Communist counterweight to Letov’s demagoguery.

Whilst this occurred Svyatoslav Fyodorov created his Workers Front against what he perceived as Khasbulatov’s lack of reform towards industrial democracy. Despite describing himself as a combination between Ross Perot and Deng Xiaoping, his party rapidly saw entryism from young socialists looking for a home away from the stagnant orders of old. In time this space allowed for the rise of figures like Sergei Kozlovskii, Evgeniy Konovalov, Natalia Magnat and Darya Mitina to later guide the rise of post-Soviet socialist thought in Russia especially as Fyodorov became ill.
This chapter was like a fucking rocket, every line got better than the previous. NazBols overtaking the old Communist, to then be overtoken by a punk musician, who then changed his ideas and became an anarchist, converting somehow the party to it, and then allied with the old CPSU, an anarchist-Soviet communist alliance. And then, just for closure, an alternative left party to the CPSU and the Social Democrats, led by a man supporting industrial democracy and describes itself as a mix between Deng Xiaoping and Ross Perot. Awesome.
Opposition to this new direction came from the neo-Maoist youth, who famously protested the Zhaoist reforms in Tiananmen Square, only to be beaten back by the riot police on the orders of Yang. Zhao was looking for a force to counteract the radical New Left, and he turned his eyes towards the Falun Gong, a new religious movement that emerged from the popularity of qigong in the 1980s. Its leader Li Hongzhi was pleased to ally with the CCP in exchange for patronage positions in the government. While Zhao was not pleased with Li’s bizarre and cultish organization, its 70 million followers were crucial allies. Zhao would also work with Qiao Shi to increase the size and spending of China’s moribund Police.
Wow, so a complete turnaround from IOTL on Falun Gong. Isn't there a prejudice against cults in China due to the memory of the Taiping Rebellion?
This would continue with China’s foreign policy, Zhao decided that Hong Kong and Taiwan would work better under the economic umbrella of China instead of it’s Government. This would become the building blocks of Zhao’s friendly neighbour policy which saw China bringing various different countries within its economic order. Anything seen as disestablishing the order would find itself wiped out. An example of this would be North Korea, in the aftermath of Kim-Il Sung’s death in 1994 it seemed his more aggressive son would take charge. Abruptly Kim Jong Un would disappear off the face of the earth and a new ‘Government of National Order’ would take over. Kim would reappear four months later, in a wheelchair with a document saying that no member of the Kim family could become North Korean leader for 20 years. A Year later the Korean Economic Zone would be formed with North and South Korea being united economically with China funding much of the projects that would occur.
Did you mean Kim Jong-Il?

Really interesting, so China will decide a completely different approach at soft power projection ITTL. This could bring them to try something similar to the Belt and Road Initiative, but without the mass negative reaction of IOTL due to better PR. How the Uyghurs are gonna do ITTL?
 
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Bambino Criminale: Italy in the 1990s

Prime Minister Lattanzio had always been targeted by Andreotti for his Moro-like policies, and when his government mismanaged the 1990 Carlentini earthquake, the knives were out against his government. While Andreotti put his name forward for the position, the party ended up bringing back Oscar Luigi Scalfaro. His government lasted over a year before news reports indicated that Silcain politician Salvo Lima had close ties to the Costa Nostra. Christian Democracy was divided on whether to support an investigation into his ties to organized crime. Prime Minister Scalfaro, always the staunch reformist, supporting making an inquiry, losing his support from the Andreotti faction.

After a long period of moderates in office, Andreotti returned to power for a brief four months. His budget failed after he attempted to maintain a Trasformismo with his center-left coalition partners; it was clear that it was a rushed job with no real account for spending. Sensing an opportunity to become president of the republic, Andreotti resigned, not wanting to waste his political power.

Andreotti’s final fall from power was clearly orchestrated by Vittorio Sbardella, whose last minute backstab of his political godfather earned him the nickname The Shark. Sbardella certainly did not have clean hands, and after the assassination of Italian-American politician Mario Cuomo by the Costa Nostra, the party thought it was best Sbardella step aside before the American Democrats took office.

Normally, this would be a time for new elections, but the polls were looking dim for the opposition despite Il sorpasso nearing its end. With support from The Left, the center-left Rosa Russo Iervolino became Italy’s first female Prime Minister, advancing the social liberalization efforts while pushing for a left-wing “Catholic solidarity” domestic policy.

In the backdrop of Andreotti’s trial for murder and mafia association, Christian Democracy finally split threeways, ending the Iervolino government. While the majority stayed with the party under the temporary administration of elder statesman Emilio Colombo, former Moro allies such as Iervolino formed the Democratic Initiative Party whilst the right-wing sided with Gianfranco Fini’s National Alliance (a rebranding of the neo-fascists).

After the 1994 elections, Renzo Imbeni of The Left was appointed to form a government, controversially choosing the Democratic Initiative as coalition allies over the continuity Communists. In the wake of this the Continuity Communists would reform too and enter talks with their one time enemies The PD & Radicals to form the Sunflower Coalition to combat the Centre Left of The Olive Tree Coalition. The PD would also change it’s leader as Capanna stepped down and was replaced by the dual leadership of Alexander Langer & Letizia Battaglia, both who would ensure that the PD became a professional voice of the Anti-Establishment whilst keeping to it’s Libertarian Municipalism ideals.

The 1990s would see great radical change in Italy as the Imbeni Government would reform Italian society into a seeming Social Democratic society with Municipal Socialist elements with support from the PD and Radicals on matters that the DIP didn’t agree with. Renzo Imbeni would manage the impossible and be Italy’s Prime Minister for 6 years, bowing out in 2000. His death in 2005 would be a national day of mourning for many as the popular Former Prime Minister and Former Mayor of Bologna was credited as having achieved what Enrico Berlinguer had always wanted.

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Geburt einer Nation: Yugoslavia during The End of History

The late 80s in Yugoslavia were a bizarre time, thanks to the Presidency of Milka Planinc who had managed to ensure some form of stability to the nations of Yugoslavia helped through a relatively stable economic system and the Sarajevo Winter Olympics securing revenue for the nation. But rumblings had been occurring despite it all. The rise of nationalism had occurred across Yugoslavia since Tito’s death as the idea of Brotherhood and Unity had ebbed, though the increasingly centralised government of Planinc (who had ensured complete control of the Armed Forces) made many attempts to keep the Nationalistic tendencies at bay. This would start to come ahead with the rise of Serbian Politician Slobodan Milošević. Having become seen as the protector of the Kosovo Serbs throughout 1987, he had used his influence with those nationalist groups to lead to a successful ousting of President Ivan Stambolić and less radical forces within the Serbian followed by Milošević gaining the Presidency of the Socialist Republic of Serbia.

In the wake of this there were worries in the Central Government that Milošević would break the fragile peace that the Yugoslavian Government had constructed amongst the nations. Starting in July 1988, this would be tested. Across various Serbian regions and Monetargro, a series of protests against perceived inadequacies in Yugoslavian system would occur, fueled by a distrust of the current system of Government and Serbian Nationalism would seem to start taking over the Governments of those regions. Planic and the Yugoslav Council watched apprehensively at the events unfolding.

Throughout 1988, there were attempts to negotiate with the rebellious Serbs but in October 1988 this would come ahead when Montenegro forces of the ‘Anti-Bureaucratic Rebellion’ effectively staged a coup against the old leadership there. Fearing an all out revolution, Planic would ready the JNA to overthrow Milošević if needed. This would come to ahead in December 1988 as Kosovo Albanians, worried by the events, staged a general strike lead by Miners. Milošević’s reaction was to attempt to send the Army and Police in to crush the Miners. The League of Communists of Yugoslavia denounced Milošević and moves were made to try and kick him out of power. But before they could occur, Serbian Nationalists would ally with Milošević’s allies and declare the ‘Republic of Free Serbia and Montenegro’, as tanks were sent into the capitals of those nations to secure them. The JNA who remained with the Central Government would move to counter the Serbian breakaway.

The official Yugoslav-Serbian War would last a year, as the Serbian forces were outmatched by the combined efforts of the JNA and Anti-Milošević forces in Serbia. Tanks rolling into Belgrade would become part of the symbology of 1989 within Western Pop Culture. But in the aftermath of the official end of the war, a guerilla war would spark up with evidence of War Crimes on both sides of the conflict and rumours of ethnic cleansing occuring in Kosovo caused the UN to step in despite Yugoslavian grumblings. But with Planinc being given the choice between a spiralling ethnic conflict or something resembling a functioning federal government, she chose the latter.

The UN’s seeming takeover of Yugoslavia was met by resistance by numerous Nationalist organisations who decided to try and take on the UN forces. Car bombings, Drive By shootings and in some cases suicide attacks would become a feature of Early 90s Yugoslavia, But cooperation between Yugoslavian officials and the UN ensured that the violence wouldn’t descend into ethnic conflict. In 1993 the UN would organise Yugoslavia's first free elections which would see the numerous nations adopting different parties as part of it’s Federal make up. This would also include the 1994 Presidential Election which would see three coalitions form to contest the election.

You would have the Union of Social Democrats, essentially a coalition of all the previous Communist Parties with a new coat of Centre Left paint, who selected Ivica Račan as there candidate, you would also have the National Force, a gaggle of various Nationalist parties who essentially campaigned on a platform of breaking up Yugoslavia once and for all, they selected Ivan Stambolić given he was the only Nationalist politician who seemed able to present a unified force and finally the People’s Democracy Coalition, a gaggle of Liberals, Socialists, Marxists, Greens, Eco-Socialists, Bookchinites and even Trotskyists. Originally the PDC wanted to draft Democratic Socialist Milovan Đilas into the role, but the elderly former statesman declined, recommending up and coming philosopher and film critic Slavoj Žižek to fill the role instead. The PDC, guessing they wouldn’t have a chance agreed, recognizing that Žižek wasn’t afraid to

The election would be a fraught as Yugoslavia’s virgin democracy was thrown in the deep end, with UN monitors working overtime to ensure that corruption didn’t occur. The election would be a two round election with a run off if a coalition couldn’t get a majority, which would lead to a nasty surprise for the USD when they managed to only get 20% compared to the 35% of the PDC, who had found itself seen as a force of Left Wing Populism countering the increasingly nasty campaign from the National Force. The USD decided to support the devil they know instead of the devil they don’t and supported the PDC in the second round, the final results surprising many;

Slavoj Žižek for the PDC- 54%
Ivan Stambolić for the National Force- 44%


Across the world the reaction was shock, the crude Marxist Philosopher had trumped the suave Serbian politician for Presidency of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. Whilst there would be some minor violence in reaction to the vote, for the most part much of Yugoslavia decided to bite their lip and see what this odd man would do for Yugoslavia and beyond.
 
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