The difference is one uses an objective scientific method through material analysis, the other is based off some book from the desert.
No, but they live far better now than they would have lived if there was not a socialist revolution in their countries that developed infrastructure, industry, and a strong standard of living. Without communist nations, these places would likely just be third world nations imperialized by capitalists.
Because the simple and fundamental basis of the highest stage of capitalism, imperialism. Just as how African nations "could" achieve the standard of living as Western nations if they adopted the economic model of Western nations, but the reality is that this is antithetical to the global capitalist class' interests. Ultimately, the financial capital of the imperializing nations goes forwards to owning all industry in these "developing" nations and subjecting them to brutal conditions and miserable wages for the sake of profit. The same would be true of all the nations of Eastern and Southern Europe if not for communists, in fact you can see a good representation of this in picture. Turkey only joined NATO because they still had Ottoman ambitions of controlling the now USSR-dominated southern europe and becoming an imperialist capitalist nation themselves. Hell, even now they have that ambition through the autocrat Erdogan and their excursions into Syria and the military pressure they put on the rest of the Near East.
As in stand against the United States attempts at imperialism, like in Venezuela and Syria, by extending aid to those countries.
There is plenty of armed conflict through proxies, the US most prominently using and arming "moderate rebels" that have ties to the Sauds to try and control the middle east. Meanwhile Russia arms and trains middle eastern governments to resist the attempts of the US and secure the sovereignty of their allied nations.
As a prole I would know that both are ultimately doomed, Norway would just be a greater fall. The relative comfort or achievements of either are pointless without communist rule.
We support Russia opportunistically to weaken the near-unipolar hegemony of the United States and their proxies. Ultimately we will betray Russia at the first convenience like the capitalist dogs that they are.
Better to live in a failed socialist state than a third world imperialized one.
The USSR stands as a historical example of the achievements of communism as well as an analysis on what we can do in the future to ensure a better communist rule to begin with. Secondly the USSR may have failed to achieve communism, but they established the capitalist state that is the prelude to revolution as per Marx's thinking, meaning that no matter your stance the USSR advanced the dialectics in Russia (unless you are a filthy third worldist anyways). Then of course there is also the standard of living and the end of mass starvation thing, as well as innumerable contributions to medicine and science through communist funded research and experimentation.