Procrastinating on June 1, 2017

Comment of the Day: Sans Souci said in reply to Elf M. Sternberg: (Early) Weekend Reading: The End of Francis Spufford's "Red Plenty": "Here's a perceptive Bolshevik critic of Stalinist central planning, which became the template of really-existing socialism... http://www.bradford-delong.com/2017/05/early-weekend-reading-the-end-of-francis-spuffords-red-plenty.html?cid=6a00e551f08003883401bb09a13bc2970d#comment-6a00e551f08003883401bb09a13bc2970d

...Lev Davidovich Bronstein.... Leon Trotsky: The Soviet Economy in Danger (October 1932) https://www.marxists.org/archive/trotsky/1932/10/sovecon.htm: "If a universal mind existed...

...of the kind that projected itself into the scientific fancy of Laplace–a mind that could register simultaneously all the processes of nature and society, that could measure the dynamics of their motion, that could forecast the results of their inter-reactions–such a mind, of course, could a priori draw up a faultless and exhaustive economic plan, beginning with the number of acres of wheat down to the last button for a vest. The bureaucracy often imagines that just such a mind is at its disposal; that is why it so easily frees itself from the control of the market and of Soviet democracy....

The innumerable living participants in the economy, state and private, collective and individual, must serve notice of their needs and of their relative strength not only through the statistical determinations of plan commissions but by the direct pressure of supply and demand. The plan is checked and, to a considerable degree, realized through the market. The regulation of the market itself must depend upon the tendencies that are brought out through its mechanism. The blueprints produced by the departments must demonstrate their economic efficacy through commercial calculation.

The system of the transitional economy is unthinkable without the control of the ruble. This presupposes, in its turn, that the ruble is at par. Without a firm monetary unit, commercial accounting can only increase the chaos...

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