Russia: Communist Garage Sale

Communist Garage Sale

Can capitalism take root in Russia? Well, it depends on what you've got for sale. There are few consumer goods available, but selling symbols of the discredited past seems to be a booming business. The West African People's Republic of Benin, bucking the worldwide trend, is said to have paid $75,000 for a statue of founding father Vladimir Ilyich Lenin. The ZIL limousines of the former leadership are on the block at as much as $10,000. Old government telephones made of semiprecious metals can reportedly be had for $400 each, complete with anti-bugging devices.

Everything from technology to tours has a...