From an Estonian friend:
My understanding of politics is greatly helped by 2 things that I have been lucky enough to experience:
1. Life in Soviet Union.
2. Experiencing social & political revolution first hand (Estonian Singing Revolution).
From first I learned how boldly state can lie and that people in power can resort to anything to stay in power. Also, of course I learned about the utter disaster that is socialism (it’s so bad, it’s not even funny). And while I do not want to conflate Soviet Union with Russia or Russian culture, there is way too many similarities between the leadership, TV and mentality in SU and current Russian Federation.
From second I learned what societal change looks like. It is something hard to describe, it is a time of chaos, of hope, of crazy events and uncertain future. Not something you want to live in permanently but still an exiting time to be around. And I hope this has given me some understanding of political events in other places and times.
This gives me (and others with similar fate) some edge over Westerners and also Western libertarians who don’t have that experience (not all of them of course). Some of them don’t recognize revolution from street protest and they also don’t seem to have any immunization against Soviet lies and propaganda. I hope this might explain some strange attitudes and claims from people who I presumed think in similar ways to me…