Russia: Sewing Machines & Spontaneity

Fresh evidence mounts weekly that Russia's new team of bosses wants to shuck the rigid trappings of centralized planning in favor of a more flexible, consumer-oriented supply-and-demand system. Scarcely a day goes by without one or another of Russia's government-controlled newspapers beating the drum for less centralized economic control.


> Pravda cocked an eyebrow recently at the Great Sewing Machine Scandal. A decade ago, the Soviet Union was short on sewing machines, so Marxism's planners pressed the "on" button. Immediately factories began competing to see who could turn out more sewing machines faster. Result: Russian seamstresses are awash in a sea...

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