Take a look at these photos of Soviet and Eastern Bloc sports cars and luxury sedans. I am simply fascinated by these vehicles because there is such as thing as the “State and the Socialist concept of Property“:
Under the Work-Standard, we begin to become cognizant of a different form of Competition in the “markets” of the VCS Economy. Competition under the Planned/Command Economy is more like a tournament of Germanic knights jousting each other for the love of the Totality and the prizes of the Reich. This Tournament is held by the central government and the Totality will be looking forward to the results. Within the Economic Sectors are Industries with a Tournament of jousting Enterprises and their Professions of Vocations. Here, we compete for the highest Quality of Arbeit vis-à-vis production of the best-possible goods and services in our respective Industries.
The motto of every Tournament is the tagline of The Fourth Estate: “Duty. Honor. Order.”
The State’s regulations are there to provide general guidelines on what is to be expected of everyone like the Prussian Immanuel Kant’s “Categorical Imperative.” These regulations are only there to remind people of why they are participating in the Tournament and what is to be expected of them by the Totality. How the participants conduct themselves in the Tournament under the rule of law is left at their discretion. Economic freedom under Socialism is like chess and billiards, two popular games in the Soviet Union. Everyone with free time on their hands can play the game however they wish and there is no one way of playing either game, provided somebody is taking the initiative of making the first move. If nobody is doing anything, is it any wonder now why the Soviet Union stagnated between the 1970s and 1980s, eventually collapsing by 1991?
There are five ways for a young person to perceive each Tournament: a work of art (for State-Administrated Enterprises), a work of devotion (for State-Owned Enterprises), a work of combat (for National-Socialized Enterprises), a work of passion (for Public-Owned Enterprises), and a work of adventure (for Public-Directed Enterprises). The old Four-Year and Five-Year Plans are already financial instruments, but the same cannot be said for the four quarters a year. A good analogy here is the sports performances held annually among different nations. There can be national, regional and college leagues dedicated to football (or soccer), American football, hockey, baseball, basketball, race cars and horse races, tennis, golf, and countless other sports. Then there are the biathlons for those in military sports: fencing, tank and aircraft biathlons, swimming, taekwondo, marathon running, judo, professional shooting, boxing, track and field, gymnastics, cross country and so forth. And then there are sports like video games (“esports” and the various genres), archery, chess, billiards and countless others. What matters for Socialism is that the games are emphasizing skillful mastery like poker and baccarat, not pure luck like craps and blackjack.
Depending on the overall size and composition of the Economic Sector, a single Industry may host about four Rounds. A “Tournament Final” pits anywhere between 2 and 20 Enterprises as Consortiums, a “Semi-Final” between 20 and 200 Enterprises as Networks, a “Second Round” between 200 and 2,000 Enterprises as Corporations, and the “First Round” between Chambers of 2,000 and 20,000 Enterprises as Cooperatives. A year on Earth only has twelve months split into four seasons: Winter, Spring, Summer, and Fall. Everybody works hard to achieve the highest Rank within their own Industry, the greatest contributor of Arbeit among them representing their Industry in the Economic Sector within the VCS Economy. Special prizes, trophies, medals, commendations, and promotions will be awarded by the State based on the receptions of the Totality and among foreigners (if there are Enterprises operating abroad).
Yes, there will be Enterprises that will do better than other Enterprises. A good analogy is in automobiles. There are always going to be people preferring Japanese Toyotas, German Volkswagens, South Korean Hyundais, Russian Ladas, Italian Fiats, and American Fords. There are those who prefer a Japanese Nissan, Mazda, Lexus, Hondas or Mitsubishi just as there are those a German Mercedes-Benz, Opel, BMW, Audi or Porsche, and so forth. But if a Socialist nation-state’s Automotive Industry could build vehicles that the Totality need and the foreigners can admire, there will be ways for its Enterprise to take the lead in their Industry internationally. Nobody under Socialism is going to deny anyone of those choices unless there is evidence of bribing, rigging, doping, cheating, scamming and other dishonorable acts involved, which can happen here as well as in any other sport.
What happens if an Enterprise becomes uncompetitive? Its Quality of Arbeit declines and the Quality of Geld rises, resulting in fewer contributions of Arbeit and fewer generations of Geld. Morale plummets, Attrition rises (or worse, Inaction rises from people failing to show up on time), people resorting to dubious actions in order to stay afloat. If people at the Enterprise are going to demonstrate their own stupidity, they will attract the wrath of the Totality once the State media publishes explosive exposés about a rash of scandals, a possible reorganization and people being dismissed from the Enterprise by the judge, jury and prosecutor in the court of law. Nobody is above the law under Socialism and those who break the rule of law will be held accountable.
Every Tournament ought to never be about people simply “winning the most Kapital”; what matters is for people to practice and improve the Quality of their Arbeit. There will be a multiplicity of different automotive designs on the streets and in the highways of the Socialist nation-state. And just like the Work-Standard regarding the concept of Currency, every automotive design still adheres to a number of built-in standardization practices like how the steering wheel on the left seat in the front is for people who drive on the right side of the road. People driving on the left side of the road expect the steering wheel on the right seat up front. Under Socialism, we need civil administrators of Enterprises to be an example for the civil servants and to do their very best by focusing more on the achievements of their Arbeit, not focusing too much about their Geld.
Do not expect the involvement of economic planners; it is not in their Vocation. There is a reason why the Enterprises of every Industry have Inspectors making periodic visits, phone calls, emails and so on to evaluate everyone’s Quality of Arbeit at the workspace. They will know whether people are actually doing what is expected of them and have the power under the rule of law to decide which Enterprises require improvements and which ones will be receiving commendations. The central inspectors host a review board and that is every Enterprise’s last chance to improve before the end of the fourth quarter. Do not be surprised if some Enterprises get demoted and others surpass them in Rank; there will always be the four quarters of next year to do better.