Wednesday, May 7, 2014

What Socialism Looks Like

Here is a video of a Soviet Era grocery store in Russia  from 1986.   

This striking video shows what happens when government regulates commerce.  This is the end-result of central planning and bureaucracy.  This is a prophecy of what is to come in the United States and other countries that are on the path of Socialism.  

Despite the warnings from those who lived there, the United States is steaming down the path of totalitarianism at full speed.

I grew up with a friend whose family escaped from Russia.  I remember a story he told in elementary school.  He told me about the time his father walked into a supermarket for the first time in the U.S.  He said that his father took a few steps into the door then stopped in his tracks, his jaw dropped, and just stood there and cried.

These stories are unheard by people like this:

Take a look at the video to see what society considers "fair".


  1. Larry, it really isn't that striking for what was a relatively underdeveloped economy. I saw supermarkets in Maylands, Western Australia, that were not dissimilar at the time.

    Ten years after the democratic revolutions the GDP per capita in the former Soviet Union was much worse, and the average standard of living, as was average life expectancy, and infant mortality.

    The problem for the Soviet Union wasn't their socialism (although granted, more market mechanisms in consumer goods would have been better), it was their lack of political democracy.

    1. Wow... you do NOT get it. At all.

    2. That was a deeply considered and insightful response on your part. However addressing the actual issue of the post, Larry seems to be of the opinion that the use of regulated commerce is bad for the economy, and is using the Soviet Union as an example.

      This is not a particularly useful way of doing comparative economics. The appropriate method is compare different economic policies *within* an economy. That was you start with the same conditions and history; and if you want to get even a little more sophisticated between different goods and services.

      When looking at the first application, it is clear that unregulated capitalism has not been terribly successful in the Soviet Union. It took about twenty years to return to the GDP per capita levels in real terms following the collapse of the Soviet Union in the FSU states.


      Keep in mind that it took "only" ten years to recover from the devastation of WWII.

      As already mentioned the Soviet Union did have a fairly poor policy of dealing with consumer goods. They put a lot more effort into capital production instead, which does have advantages with a planned economy due to lower levels of complexity.

      Anyway, hope this gives you some motivation to engage in a more serious and less partisan consideration of comparative economics and to more carefully analyse the advantages and disadvantages of different types and levels of regulatory frameworks.

    3. GDP is not a very good indicator of quality of life, nor of the value of the production.

      The state can use tax money to build balloon factories and put everyone to work making balloons, then they can pass laws ordering everyone to buy said balloons. Boom! Instant GDP growth! What value is it to anyone?

    4. Are you saying that the markets of Western Australia and Maryland are unregulated?

    5. Yes Larry, I know how GDP is calculated. Would you care to explain how, if the Soviet Union made the resource allocations that you're suggesting, that it had much better life expectancy, standard of living, and infant mortality than what followed?

      Also, I hope you realise that image of the Greens supporter is a fake. You can see the construction in the background. The Greens never released such a poster.

    6. Yes, the picture is a fake. But that didn't stop it from getting spread around the internet by a bunch of different labor unions using the hashtag to support their end goal.

      What resource allocations did I suggest?

  2. They have food and enough of it. It's all they deserve.... unless they happen to have connections, preferably with party members.