I have never encountered someone Polish who knew communism who would make that comparison.
Normal people wouldn't know it was communism because what Poland had was not communism. We just use this word to refer to the pure evil that the real communism would be.
What they do know is that everything important in life was free. And that they were making just enough not to starve. Freedom of speech was never on their minds and the freedom to travel abroad was out of reach financially, even if allowed.
I know 3 or 4, plus a few down the gym that I am on nodding terms with...
Another meaningless bs line. Nodding is not enough to know their political views in any depth beyond "I am for it" or "I hate it". The same with this crap:
Older people with mildly nationalist views - lot
Just a mental fart. How many did you interview? Or did you just overhear one of them say, "those damn immigrants"?