RUSSIA: Message for Troglodytes

Visitors to Russia who insist on saying "Spasibo" ("Thank you") for services rendered reveal themselves to knowing Russians not only as foreigners but as class enemies. The good Soviet citizen avoids such courtesies. In Russia's October Revolution and the bloody civil war, the Bolsheviks learned that one way to spot an enemy was to listen to his speech. A cultivated diction and politeness were the caste marks of the bourgeoisie; polite speech, like the bourgeoisie, soon went out of fashion.

Someone remembered that Karl Marx himself had said that the bourgeoisie had...

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