Border Crisis Shows The Establishment’s Contempt For Democracy

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On June 17, 1953, more than a million East Germans walked off the job and launched a massive strike in protest of unfair production demands imposed by the communist government. The playwright Bertolt Brecht, who was living in East Berlin, responded by composing a poem about the Soviet-installed government’s approach to the problem, “Die Lösung” (which translates into “The Solution”):

After the uprising of the 17th June

The Secretary of the Writers Union

Had leaflets distributed in the Stalinallee

Stating that the people

Had forfeited the confidence of the government

And could win it back only

By redoubled efforts. Would it not be easier

In that case for the government

To dissolve the people

And elect another?

Anyway, you know things are bad in America when East Germany seems like a relevant historical analog, but here we are. Perusing the press these days, you’d think Brecht’s satirical joke about the government …

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