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> On 7/29/17 5:54 PM, Louis Proyect via Marxism wrote:
> I cite Moshe Lewin:
> https://louisproyect.org/2009/09/14/joseph-stalin-nostalgia/
> Stalin´s rule was marked mostly by a lack of planning. Despite the 
> announcement of 5-year plans, the economy had more in common with 
> bureaucratic fiat than scientific planning. All this is discussed in 
> chapter 5 entitled "The Disappearance of Planning in the Plan" in Moshe 
> Lewin´s  "Russia USSR Russia".

The material cited by Proyect is quite useful. At the same time, it is should 
be understood that Soviet state-capitalism had *both* planning and anarchy of 
production. Clearly the state apparatus sent vast resources into industry 
through a decision, not the spontaneous operation of market forces, while the 
way the enterprises operated, and the precise allocation of various 
resources, displayed the vast anarchy of production in the Soviet economy. 
The unrealistic or even absurd nature of various features of the plan, 
discussed in the material cited by Proyect, was part of this anarchy of 

The anarchy of Soviet production was noted by all serious economic 
commentators, but they differ on its significance. I discussed the Stalinist 
anarchy of production, and how it existed alongside planning, and why it 
existed alongside planning, in the following article, which was based on 
material from a number of different careful studies of the Soviet economy:

"The anarchy of production beneath the veneer of Soviet revisionist 
planning", March 1, 1997, by Joseph Green


Earlier in this thread, Walter Daum posted a chapter from his book on 
statified capitalism. I think that his book comes the closest of any major 
Trotskyist work to a correct assessment of the Stalinist economy. For 
example, unlike Tony Cliff, Daum pays attention to the *internal* sources of 
anarchy (which he calls decentralization) in the Soviet economy, rather than 
simply blaming the anarchy on the connection of the Soviet Union to the 
surrounding capitalist world economy. But at the same Daum's attempt to put 
everything into a Trotskyist framework and defend Trotsky's statements about 
the Soviet economy involved him in a number of crying contradictions; it 
sometimes seems that Daum strongly asserts things only for the sake of 
denying them later in his book. In this sense, Daum not only discusses the 
life and death of Stalinism, but gives an illustration of the life and death 
of Trotskyist theorizing.

See my review of Daum's book:

"On Walter Daum's 'The Life and Death of Stalinism': 
Competition among Soviet enterprises and ministries, and
the collapse of the Soviet Union"
by Joseph Green, Dec. 1998


The basic features of state-capitalism appeared not just in the Soviet 
economy, but in other state-capitalist economies as the well.This includes 
the Cuban economy. Mark Williams of the Detroit Workers' Voice has written a 
series of articles on different time periods of the Castroist economy. This 

Cuba in the 1960s: Bureaucrats head to 'communism' without the workers"
by Mark Williams, April 1998



"Did Castro steer Cuba towards socialism in the late 1980s?"
by Mark Williams, December 1996


For more on Cuba, see


Joseph Green

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