For a long time in August we wrote about "August 1991". At first, these were very victorious, anniversary articles. Like "that's how cool we gave then!" Then some kind of melancholy appeared in them, when our further affairs went awry and awry. Then unexpected catastrophism appeared: “Well, where, where are the results?”. And then people generally stopped writing and reading, embarrassed by the very words. Other tanks in the cities were obscured, economic crises, pandemics, Trump and American affairs ... And one friend said to me: “And the problem of fresh water - why is it not of interest to you today?”
Very interested! "Without water, you can't go here or there." And today I would not have raised the topic of the ill-fated "August" again today, if not for the next episode. Listen.
I went to the bank to my manager, who offered me new "tools", thereby causing me inner laughter. The fact is that with the old “instruments”, all the currency accumulated by old age hung up, having already ceased, in fact, to be mine in the classical sense of the word. The bank began to throw it from account to account without my consent, and transfer the securities to some other brokers. And in this concept, I, apparently, turned into a voluntary employee of the same bank or into a temporary manager of my money, despite the fact that now this time, it seems, has also ended. From a rich man who was entitled to a free personal manager, I instantly turned into a poor man who was no longer entitled to a manager.
However, I did not share sardonic thoughts with my outgoing manager, noting only that it was never so uncomfortable for new “instruments” (he offered to bring more money to restore my rights) in the history of the USSR-Russia. "More than ever? - the manager, a handsome young man, was surprised, - there was a famous Chinese crisis in the 2000s, but we survived, we will survive today.
And then it hit me. Why is he remembering some ridiculous Chinese crisis? How old was he in 1998? We've been through all of this. The manager thought for a moment and replied, "Six years."
Six years! So, for him, the “horror of 98” is some kind of incomprehensible “Legends and Myths of Ancient Greece”. Oppa! - and in the 91st he was not on this planet at all! And if later, when he became an adult, someone told him that in 1991 we stupidly destroyed the “USSR office”, when it was only necessary to rearrange the furniture, such a logical version in its own way could well settle in his head.
No matter how it was necessary to destroy the USSR along with free medicine and education. There was no need to scandalously ban the Communist Party, just create a second one - the Social Democratic. There was no need to close military bases abroad, losing geopolitical influence - it would be useful today in response to sanctions. And if it’s already impatient to leave the GDR, then take a generous compensation for this.
In other words, we just had to change a little something in the "office", and we would not have worries. Get rid of the bad, leaving all the good.
You say, is this some kind of feuilleton on the goal and the meaning of "August"? But serious elderly people are also included in the dispute today. One of the critical considerations is based on the doubt that people, millions in the squares, then wanted democracy.
Indeed, if they wanted democracy, then why did they stop defending it later, even turning to denial? Where is the democratic subjectivity of the people? Maybe they were talking about democracy, but in fact, jeans, sausages and chewing gum were enough for them?
Or did people think that the West would organize the Cote d'Azur for them throughout the USSR, it was enough to disarm and say the right words? Let's just lie on the beach in idle bliss, drinking Belgian beer. It is clear that then they were all upset.
It was not a misunderstanding that ruined the USSR then, it was completely conditioned nausea that ruined it
From the Soviet existence by 1985, everyone was already sick, and hipsters, and party members, and even security officials. Moreover, nausea had the following roots. Firstly, total poverty, poverty of a special kind, when Soviet people sailed on super-expensive nuclear submarines and launched people into space, but did not have their own funds for the most necessary, for example, to repair a rickety fence.
I recall that when Gagarin landed on a collective farm field, the delighted collective farmers first of all ate his flight ration - they had never seen such delicious food (in unsympathetic tubes) in their lives.
And the second reason is, again, the total ritualization of Soviet life, when absolutely all the people of the USSR were abnormally deprived of their own voice, which cannot be said about any other adult nation in the world.
It was a time when there were standard ritual answers to all questions. “Why do you want to join the Communist Party? “Because I want to be in the forefront of the fighters for the cause of communism.” OK! Why are these ideas correct? Because this is how Marx and Lenin wrote, page such and such, such and such. These rituals ate up the time of life. Finding one's own voice and one's own opinion (without the Lenins, Marxes and General Secretaries), thus, was an important motive of "August". It was like a diver getting air. Instead of "they think", "I think".
And let it not be said that people did not understand democracy at the same time (indeed, I myself did not really understand how it looks in practice and whether democratic representatives will be smart), but these feelings - getting rid of nausea and finding their own voice - are undoubtedly were the most genuine democratic sentiments. As well as the desire for freemen in clothes. However, in August 1991, all the good things that had been ripening since 1985 could be interrupted.
People tend to be scared. Especially when a roll is suspected by 1937. On August 19, I woke up from the strange silence of the city and the strange rumble that came from the Moscow Ring Road. Tanks were entering the city. A friend who accidentally hung in America called and asked if it was worth returning. I remember that I intuited and answered that I still did not believe in a complete and fatal catastrophe. Then they called from the editorial office of Kommersant and, to my surprise, they called me to work. What job?! It turned out that the chief editors included in the pool of people close to Alexander Yakovlev "knew something", so they organized the "Obshchaya Gazeta". Obshchaya Gazeta was quickly printed, because the money was transferred to the printing houses, and the State Committee for the State of Emergency did not yet have tonton-macoutes that could scatter circulation. Elementary Watson!
The GKChP held out for another day. In fact, only until the historic question of Tatyana Malkina at a press conference: “Do you understand that you are making a coup?” And on the 21st it was all over. Thus, if "August" has taught us anything, it is that there is no need to be afraid, the "horror of catastrophe" can end as suddenly as it begins. In 1991, the nausea from the old senile with shaking hands (like Yanaev) who pulled us into the past was irresistible.
So "August" doesn't just happen at the behest of hipsters, when elites block imperative change. And they are peaceful (may not be peaceful) - when nausea covers all strata of society. After all, the Great French Revolution at first was exactly the same “August” with a gradual unfolding into a bloody mess with the resistance of tyranny. And it all started with a lack of bread, nausea of the deputies of the National Assembly and the "sections of Paris", which did not allow the deputies to merge the protest.