Nation of Beancounters

Mind-blowing claims about Soviet production

Posted in Uncategorized by Navin Kumar on July 26, 2012

Sometimes people forget how badly Soviet central planning worked. A variety of economic studies found that vast swaths of Soviet industry were producing with negative value added: that is, the world-market price of the raw materials and energy that they were using as inputs was greater than the world-market price of the outputs being produced.

There were stories that factories producing televisions sometimes shipped only the external case, with and no electronics inside, because they were desperate to meet the official quota for production of television sets. When Soviet companies did produce actual televisions, the quality control issues were legendary. In one company, 70% of the televisions produced failed quality control checks. Those televisions that escaped the factory tended to explode. One study blamed most of the apartment fires in Moscow on exploding televisions.

Timoty Taylor

Good collection of Soviet jokes at the links.



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