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Future plans of the USSR.

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Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 07 Jul 2006, 04:49
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Old Bolshevik
Post 11 Jun 2009, 21:19
So, I have a question, what plans did the USSR have for the 1990s and 2000s before it broke up?
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Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 27 Oct 2006, 23:10
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Post 11 Jun 2009, 22:46
For one thing, I think they planned on landing a man on the moon by the year 2000.
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Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 07 Jul 2006, 04:49
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Old Bolshevik
Post 14 Jun 2009, 01:59
*Bump* 34 views (Plus an interesting topic) and only one post?
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Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 08 Nov 2007, 06:31
Embalmed
Post 14 Jun 2009, 02:07
If it helps, I'm interested too.
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Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 10 Jun 2009, 22:10
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Post 14 Jun 2009, 04:32
So am I. O_o
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Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 13 Feb 2008, 15:25
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Post 14 Jun 2009, 04:38
I bought a book last weekend from the early 80's about the Soviet space program. It seems to be pretty objective to, right down to saying "Soviet scientists" instead of "Russian scientists".

It has a chapter on future plans, but keep in mind it talks about Buran as a future plan, so it may not be accurate. I'll post up some stuff when my exams are over (two weeks).
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Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 12 Jul 2005, 01:11
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Post 23 Jun 2009, 21:19
I think you guys will get a kick out of this one..... After perestroika in the late 80's, the Komsomol was charged with teaching people how to be socially responsible capitalists...
I think that should give you a general direction as to where things were headed
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Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 14 Jul 2008, 20:01
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Post 23 Jun 2009, 21:26
Maybe Misuzu should clarify whether she was talking about the socialist USSR.
"Don't know why i'm still surprised with this shit anyway." - Loz
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Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 07 Jul 2006, 04:49
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Post 23 Jun 2009, 23:02
I was talking about the USSR before Perestroika.

(Flag to: Soviet78)
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Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 30 May 2009, 19:37
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Post 24 Jun 2009, 03:29
Did USSR have a plan before Perestroika? I don't know of it. But the future plans of USSR for the 1950s is pretty impressed:
http://www.directdemocracy4u.org/DDEN/ENG/transformation.php
http://www.kibristasosyalistgercek.net/english/automatic/FrmIntIndex1.htm
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Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 07 Oct 2004, 22:04
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Post 11 Jul 2009, 20:46
There are several areas where clear plans were drawn up and outlined (some of them secretly), among them the economy, space exploration, and military.


Economy:

With an economy organized around five-year plans, the 12th (1986-1990) gives some indications of the trajectory the Soviets wanted take with a traditional conservative regime in place. The 12th Pyatiletka was conceptualized and drafted while Chernenko was Gen-Sec but approved by Gorbachev shortly after he came into office, which explains why the plan is so radically different from the reforms that were actually implemented in that period.

In the document Basic Directions for the Economic and Social Development of the USSR for 1986-1990 and for the Period to the Year 2000, the principal tasks of the Twelfth Five Year Plan were declared to be "to enhance the pace and efficiency of economic development by accelerating scientific and technical progress, retooling and adapting production, intensively using existing production potential, and improving the managerial system and accounting mechanism, and, on this basis, to further raise the standard of living of the Soviet people."

Individual components of importance:

Industrial/Construction:


* Plans for an 80% increase in investment over the previous Pyatiletka in the sectors producing machine tools, electrical equipment, chemicals, and agricultural machinery, which was set to increase machine-building output by 40-45% during the five year period.
* Plans for a 23% rise in capital investment, with roughly half of those funds to be spent on retooling of existing capacity, concurrently with an acceleration in the retirement of obsolete equipment.
* Plans for a near doubling of the contribution of synthetic resins and plastics to the construction industry by the year 2000, which could replace metals used in machinery, construction materials, engines, and pipe.
* Plans for the improvement in availability, quality and service life of individual components and spare parts for machinery in order to reduce downtime.
* Plans for an increase in the use of computer program control mechanization and automation in assembly lines, which would reduce the use of unskilled labor and increase speed and precision of production.
* A call for increased efficiency in R&D procedures and processes in order to shorten the time between research breakthroughs and their industrial application, based on new organizational structures which would combine elements of research, design and production facilities into one unit.
* Plans for locating and constructing new industries which require high energy inputs in locations close to energy sources (i.e. Siberia), and simultaneously increasing the number of workplaces in regions with the requisite manpower resources (i.e. Central Asia) by focusing on services, light industry, and other sectors requiring fewer raw materials.
* Plans for special focus on the development of infrastructure in Siberia and the Soviet Far East.
* Plans for a 240% increase in the production of computers during the period 1986-1990.
* Plans for a 5.4% rise in the production of nonfood consumer goods and a 5.4-7% rise in consumer services through the period. Consumer goods targeted included light industry items such as radios, televisions, tape recorders, sewing machines, washing machines, refrigerators, printed matter, clothing, and furniture.
* The continuation of a long-term cooperative program with other Comecon members to develop new ideas for streamlining the Soviet machine-building industry.

Energy:

* Plans for increasing production of primary energy by 3.6% per year, compared with 2.6% per year in the previous Pyatiletka, based largely on major growth in nuclear power capacity, whose capacity in 1990 was expected to be 1.5 times its 1985 level (which would result in nuclear power displacing hydroelectric to become the second largest electricity source in the Soviet Union, at 21% of the national power balance). Additionally, plans called for the construction of ninety new hydroelectric stations in the period between 1990 and 2000.
* A plan to connect the Unified Electrical Power System with the Central Asian Power System by 1990, bringing 95% of the country's power production into a single distribution network.

Agriculture & Forestry:

* Plans to raise agricultural production by the following percentages over the average of the previous Pyatiletka by 1990: Grain by 2.7%; potatoes by 2.5%; sugar beets by 3.9%; vegetables by 6.8%; fruits, berries and grapes by 11.2%; meat by 18.7%; milk by 4.2%; eggs by 10.2%; raw cotton by 3.6%.
* Plans for the wider use of contract brigades in agricultural production, based on brigades of ten to thirty farm workers who managed a piece of land leased by the kolkhoz or sovkhoz under terms giving them responsibility for the entire production cycle, with the workers receiving a predetermined price for the contracted amount plus generous bonuses for any excess production.
* Plans to raise production of pulp by 15-18%, paper by 11-15%, and fiberboard by 17-20%.

Other:

* The 12th Pyatiletka placed special attention and focus on individual productivity and discipline in the workplace, and called for making demotion or dismissal of corrupt or inefficient workers and managers easier.
* The 12th Pyatiletka also placed special attention and focus on the conservation of raw materials, the efficient use of fuels, energy, raw materials, metal, and other materials, and focused on the reduction of waste in production, transportation and storage.
* Plans to furnish high schools with at least 500,000 computers by 1990, and projecting that 5,000,000 computers would be distributed to schools by the year 2000. A 1985 law also required all ninth and tenth graders to learn computer fundamentals.
* The targets of the plan posited an average growth rate in national income of 4% yearly, based mainly on increases in labour productivity, with national income projected to double by the year 2000 and labour productivity growing by 6.5-7.4% per year in the 1990s. The overall ratio of expenditure on material inputs and energy to national income was set to decrease by 4-5% in the plan period. Projected modernization of the workplace would release 20 million people from unskilled work by the year 2000.


Space Exploration:

* 1990: INTERBOL: A project involving the launch of two Prognoz satellites to conduct solar-terrestrial studies and survey the Earth's magnetosphere, with participation by Eastern Bloc countries as well as Cuba, France, and Sweden.
* 1990: SCARAB: A scanning radiometer installed on a Meteor satellite woudl study the radiation balance between Earth and its atmosphere.
* 1991-1992: ALISSA: A project designed to conduct a detailed study of the upper layer of cloud systems, using the Mir space station.
* 1992-1994: VESTA: A cooperative project of the USSR and France, involving a Mars probe and an asteroid flyby, with the USSR developing an orbiter craft which would deploy balloon probes in the Martian atmosphere, with France, in cooperation with the European Space Agency, producing two spacecraft for an asteroid flyby.
* 1993-1994: AELITA: A project to conduct research on the cooling of space telescopes exposed to cosmic background radiation.
* 1996-2000: MARS SAMPLE RETURN MISSION: The culmination of the Soviet Mars program, preceded by PHOBOS and VESTA missions [which IRL were unsuccessful], with the launching of robot probes to land on Mars in the period 1996-2000, with a craft designed to take samples of Martian soil and return them to Earth. A project also existed in 1987 at the Academy of Sciences' Machine Engineering Institute to develop a hexapod walking rover vehicle which might ultimately have been used for transporting cosmonauts on the surface of Mars.
* 2007?: A possible manned lunar base, whose probability would have increased if an international cooperative program were to be established. Emphasis for this project was on the cost effectiveness of using lunar materials both for initial construction and as a source of radiation shielding for long-term manned missions. The western region of the Oceanus Procellarum would be a potential location for the base, with the exact site to be determined by a new generation of automatic lunar probes launched in the 1990s, which would be followed by robot lunar rovers that would collect necessary engineering data. The next stage would consist of a manned survey crew of four people and two rover vehicles, spending thirty days on the surface and choosing the final location of the first habitation module, with construction crews and researchers landing after automatic craft had already delivered all necessary materials to the site. Eight flights were estimated to be required to accomplish the task, with the ninth bringing the first permanent crew to the base.

Quote from an October 1986 National Geographic article:

"Space stations: "Western observers see Salyut and Mir being replaced in a few years by a larger station. This hinges on successful launching of a heavy-lift booster comparable to that which lifted Skylab. "They could assemble a large station today, piece by piece," said Geoffrey Perry. "But it's much more efficient to send up large components."...Meanwhile the Soviets are expected to dock as many as four large modules at Mir, with continuously operating crews. Shuttle: The Soviets contend that their inexpensive, mass-produced rockets make a shuttle unnecessary for the near future. "We see no need until the next century, when we will want to transport more material between earth and space," General Dzhanibekov told me...Space industries: Despite a slackening of U.S. interest, Soviet authorities speak bullishly of prospects for space manufacturing and processing industries. Pharmaceuticals and semiconductors lead the products list. Gen. Vladimir Shatalov, chief of cosmaunat training at Star City, states that space industries will earn 50 billion rubles (35 billion dollars) annually by 1990...To Mars? The Soviets feel a spiritual pull toward the red planet. "Even back in the thirties, when Tsiolkovsky was alive, that was our dream," I heard from aged rocket designer Igor A. Merkulov. The logistics posed by the three-year round-trip are staggering. The Soviets estimate a crew of three would require four and a half tons of food, ten tons of oxygen, and 17 tons of water. "The technology of water regeneration is advancing rapidly," Dr. Gazenko said. "But then there are the psychological obstacles. How do you regenerate the human spirit?" When will a Mars mission get under way? Academician Sagdeev stated that a Mars mission voyage will not take place before the year 2000. Nicholas Johnson interprets Soviet expectations to encompass lunar bases within 20 years, Mars expeditions a decade later...Soviets at all levels speak hopefully of a joint U.S.-U.S.S.R. mission to Mars."

http://englishrussia.com/?p=1501 - Concept art of various proposed space missions

http://englishrussia.com/?p=1362 - The Soviet space shuttle Buran

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BRR2aeYapP0 - Buran again: Automatic take-off and landing trials (!), 1988.

Military:

I am no military expert, so I will leave 'future plans' in this regard to others. Apart from the scrapped plans for Soviet aircraft carriers (http://englishrussia.com/?p=1868), I assume that most of Russia's much touted modern and supermodern equipment is either late-Soviet era or production versions of prototypes developed in the last days of the USSR, which means if you want to see the future plans of the Soviets, simply look at Russia's modern weaponry and subtract five to ten years. (ex. 2008 Victory Day Parade http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JgFjG5Ith1Y)


Other:

Out of personal interest, I've looked into and thought about how other components of Soviet life would look today if the country hadn't collapsed. I focused particularly on vehicles and housing, since other elements (culture, fashion, etc) are more difficult to try to predict. The maxims upon which Soviet production was based were simplicity, reliability, and standardization, using as many existing parts as possible to maximize performance predictability.

With regard to vehicles, these maxims mean that the new generation of cars produced in the late-Soviet era would probably continue to be manufactured in a Soviet Union of today.

Image

(GAZ-3102)

Image

(Lada Riva)

Image

(Lada Niva)

However, there were some interesting concept cars produced by AZLK in the late 1980s as well. Whether they would have gone into production or not is an eternal question, but they do look interesting:

Image

(AZLK Aleko prototype, 1988)

Image

(AZLK Arbat prototype, 1987)

A great resource which might give a glimpse of possible directions for modernized and updated Soviet production of heavy vehicles (such as trucks, tractors, and buses) is the current output of Belarus, whose products are in line with the Soviet maxims mentioned above, sold around the world, and judged competitive in the global marketplace, disproving the notion that socialist production is inferior and uncompetitive with its Western counterparts.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/BelAZ

http://bkm.by/?id_page=8&path=8

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minsk_Automobile_Plant

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=27SO3TyE8jw -Belarus vehicles on parade in Minsk


With regard to housing, Kochoson (or Vladimir, as he's known on PoFo) gave some interesting insights into Soviet housing architecture and city planning in the 1980s on these pages:

http://www.soviet-empire.com/ussr/viewtopic.php?f=125&t=42915

http://www.politicsforum.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=76921

As he notes, among the standards of Soviet apartment construction in the 1980s were:

* Concrete high-rises with good insulation and fast lifts
* Larger amounts of floor space
* Regulations on the amount of sunlight to reach each apartment during the day, and on spacing of buildings so as to minimize shade generated by surrounding buildings
* Standard allotment of space for communal parks and playgrounds, and for the provisions of stores, daycares, schools and other ammenities close to the living area, along with public transportation routes close to the housing

A quote from a university journal on city planning, translated by Vladimir:

Quote:
Here is a brief translation (lots of technical detail for actual construction taken out, just basic ideas given) of a chapter from a university journal on city planning, a la approx. 1985 (the prime for planning in Russia, since then there was only decline - in university the latest useful materials available are from 1985-1988)
-
Requirements for modern cities and the planning strategies to be utilised in order to reach these requirements

Housing for working people
Modern cities' primary feature is high population and the existence of inner-urban light industry.
Any effective city plan would account for both of these factors, and combine these with the peoples' needs and the according demands from their surroundings.
High population, at first glance, tends to lead to high population density; however, it is correct planning strategies that lead to high population densities. High density of people is a primary demand in planning, however it does not come naturally with urban agglomerations. Although economic centres that cities are, according to the theory of centres, are progressively more dense, the actually desirable density can only be achieved with correct planning and the use of appropriate engineering techniques in construction.
Such techniques are primarily
- maximum exploitation of land upon which buildings stand (not necessarily all city land), i.e. building height appropriate for the population density of the area (which is in turn dependent on population quantity in the area, which varies within a city).
- compromising living area meterages, i.e. a living area to satisfy the needs for laying out a household, but with maximum efficiency o the household.
- communal housing strictly
What follows is the second aspect, i.e. human needs within a city environment. This calls for a simultaneous increase in population density and a reduction of building density. Communal green spaces are to be maintained among the city ampir, thus bringing the green belt into the city, making the "city lungs" exist alongside the population, in everyday life.
A free and uncluttered ampir provides freedom of movement + efficiency of movement and freedom of outside leisure time for city working people and their families.

Transportation is a central issue for planning. The objectives for a transportation system are simplicity and efficiency.
Streets thus must be made to readily accommodate the largest traffic load, accounting for both private and public means of transport, with no interference.
Streets for this purpose must be at least two-laned, and wide (min.2 metres per lane).
Although the inner-district space provides a lot of movement space for pedestrians, main street arteries must accommodate pedestrians, as these are primary axis for orientation and transport links.
The aspect of human needs comes in again, demanding for a neutralisation of traffic fumes, noise and danger. Sidewalks must always be wide and if possible separated from driving parts, and street corridors must be wide in order to minimise fume penetration of inner districts.
Services and industry
The city working people need provision of goods and services, and city planning has the ability to make this provision convenient and efficient.
People within one district must have near access to all basic goods and services within appropriately small distance from their homes. While freedom of inner-district movement and condensed housing provides quick walking access to all parts of a district and main transport links, services must not be too far away to be a serious bother and a spending of time.
Thus, basic products - milk products, bread, meat, etc, must be in special outlets within at most 400 metres from a given dwelling. Less basic products, i.e. - products for slow/irregular consumption, household goods, etc, can be at any distance as long as a district possesses them at some location. The quantity of these outlets is governed by the amount of people in a district, instead of walking distance requirements.
Public services - schools, kindergartens, leisure time clubs must also be within a reasonable distance from a given dwelling, schools and kindergartens at most within 500 metres from a given point. Such locations are also best to be off main street arteries, within inner districts.
Clubs do not really need to be in great proximity to houses, they can be opened randomly, but be clearly shown among other objects.

City industry must be concentrated along transport arteries to ensure optimal travel for working people. Industry that produces any waste - such as fumes or martial dumplings must be situated in wholly planned industrial districts, where there is little/none residential areas, and all infrastructure is planned for the purpose of the industry operating within the district. Such districts are best off situated on a mid-way circumference of the city, perhaps along a special ring-road plus a railway ring – for transport of industrial materials and quick waste disposal (creating industrial dumps mid-way through a city would cause great degradation of city environment). Either on the very outskirts of the city, were residences are not dense at all, and already interject with agricultural and natural objects. Transport links to such districts must be secure, which involves setting up separate routes for buses.





Sources:

http://www.guma.oglib.ru/bgl/2431.html - Materials from the 27th Congress of the CPSU, including the document “Basic Directions for the Economic and Social Development of the USSR for 1986-1990 and for the Period to the Year 2000”

http://www.country-data.com/cgi-bin/query/r-12708.html - A Western summation of the Five Year Plan’s goals.

http://suzymchale.com/articles/sovspace.html -National Geographic article

http://suzymchale.com/kosmonavtka/lostdreams.html -Lost Dreams article on Soviet space program

http://www.fas.org/irp/cia/product/fbis-sovspace1987.pdf 1987 document “Soviet Space Missions Planned Through the Year 2000”
"The thing about capitalism is that it sounds awful on paper and is horrendous in practice. Communism sounds wonderful on paper and when it was put into practice it was done pretty well for what they had to work with." -MiG
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Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 13 Feb 2008, 15:25
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Post 12 Jul 2009, 12:43
Excellent post Soviet78! I think you might have beaten me to it on the future plans for space exploration, but I'll see what I have.
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Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 07 Oct 2004, 22:04
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Post 13 Jul 2009, 00:01
Thanks, Fellow Comrade.

There were a couple of things I wanted to clarify, and also to present a sense of the plans' implications.

Firstly, I should have noted in the post that Five Year Plans historically have almost always been overoptimistic, with targets almost never entirely fulfilled, especially in the later years. Having said that, 80% fulfillment of what had been laid down on paper for the 12th Pyatiletka would probably have been considered a success, with important positive implications for ordinary people and for the country as a whole.

For example, while the plans for agricultural production overall were somewhat modest, and generally seemingly set to rise to accomodate growth in population, vegetables, fruits, eggs, and especially meat (with calls for an 18.7% rise over the previous Pyatiletka's goals) would considerably enrich the diet of Soviet people. In line with previous experience, the Soviets would most definitely have to increase their import of feed grain from other countries in order to accomplish the vast majority of this rise. Plans for the wider use of contract brigades in agriculture, experiments with which had produced generally positive results in the late Brezhnev era, would also help to accomplish these tasks.

Plans for significantly increased investment in computers, computer education, mechanization and computer-based automation of assembly lines show that the government was gradually coming to understand the need to follow the rest of the world in developing the potential of these tools to improve efficiency, quality and speed of production. It is unclear whether they realized just how important a role computer technology could play in the planning process itself. For the Soviet central planning system, the need to develop mathematical theories and computer technologies which could accomodate the ever-more complex demands of 'the plan' was far more crucial than it was for capitalist states. As Igor Birman pointed out in a 1988 article about the task of Soviet central planners in the 1980s: "The economy produces more than 20 million types, varieties and sizes of goods, and the number of links between enterprises and other establishments within the 'productive sphere' are about one billion. The decisions affecting the balances are made in many thousands of places -among them are 45,000 industrial, about 60,000 agricultural and about 33,000 building enterprises." (Igor Birman, "The Imbalance of the Soviet Economy," Soviet Studies. Vol 40, No.2 Apr. 1988). This means (in my view) that there was really no way for the government to put too much focus on technology's role in improving planning, because the successful integration of computer technology in production and planning was crucial to the survival, success and competitiveness of the Soviet model of development in the long term.

The plans for continuing to increase nuclear and hydroelectric power as a percentage of domestic Soviet energy use would have a positive but not clearly definable impact on the country's status as an energy superpower. Obviously, because they would need to use less of their fossil fuel energy resources domestically, the Soviets could export more abroad, particularly to Europe through the continually growing series of oil and gas pipelines going through Eastern Europe to the West. Whether the provision of energy resources in this way would make Western Europe 'energy dependent' on the USSR in a major way (which would have the potential to influence their foreign policy alignment) is questionable, but in the construction of the pipelines themselves in the 1970s and 1980s the Western European states received considerable pressure from the United States, which was obviously unhappy with the development of Soviet/West European ties.

The plans to construct new heavy industries closer to material resource bases in Siberia, and light industry and services closer to manpower bases in the south were important initiatives which recognized the ever-growing dilemma in the USSR of resources being more and more difficult to reach and extract and a growing population base in a region without significant industrial potential. How serious and well thought out these plans was I'm not certain of, but the government's recognition of the problem and the offering of concrete solutions would have been important first steps.

The special attention placed by the 12th Pyatiletka on individual productivity, discipline, conservation, efficient use of materials, and reduction of waste in transport and storage were important steps with the potential to increase the quality and amount of goods available. It is important to note however that these steps would not be enough for the efficient running of the country, which would also require the purging of the party and bureaucracy and the introduction of strict discipline measures on the leadership itself (which was a significant source of corruption and inefficiency and the main reason for the demoralization of ordinary people).

Finally, another important element missing from the plan is the effort to tighten the money supply, which was growing insatiably while availability of goods to purchase with it grew considerably more slowly. Andropov had apparently realized the importance of this step back during his leadership, but decided to tackle productivity and corruption beforehand. It is true and understandable that such a measure would be unpopular among the management and among ordinary people, but it would be a necessity in order to reduce shortages of sought after goods. An alternative would have been to raise prices among key staples goods (many of whose prices by the 1980s had been stable for upwards of thirty years), though I'm sure the psychological impact of that might have been even worse. In my view a tight money supply was absolutely essential in a planned economy like that of the USSR, and that some sort of gradualist tightening would have been the most appropriate way to achieve this.

...

By the way guys, do any of you know how I could access university journals without being a university student? I've realized, now that I'm out of school, how many sources of information are denied to me because I'm outside of the academic environment. Any help in this regard would be greatly appreciated.
"The thing about capitalism is that it sounds awful on paper and is horrendous in practice. Communism sounds wonderful on paper and when it was put into practice it was done pretty well for what they had to work with." -MiG
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Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 07 Jul 2006, 04:49
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Old Bolshevik
Post 13 Jul 2009, 00:44
Have you tried bugmenot.com?
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Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 07 Oct 2004, 22:04
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Post 13 Jul 2009, 01:45
Hey, thanks for that. I'd never heard of that before.
"The thing about capitalism is that it sounds awful on paper and is horrendous in practice. Communism sounds wonderful on paper and when it was put into practice it was done pretty well for what they had to work with." -MiG
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Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 10 Sep 2006, 22:05
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Post 20 Jul 2009, 09:50
Except that it rarely, if ever, works.
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