One of the key features of the old Soviet Union was its centralised planning, it was known as Gosplan.
Initially Gosplan had an advisory role. Its primary objective was the co-ordination of the economic plans of Union republics and the creation of the common Union plan. In 1925 Gosplan started creating annual economic plans, known as “control numbers”. With the introduction of five year plans in 1928, Gosplan became responsible for their creation and supervision according to the outlines set out by the Communist Party of the Soviet Union.
“We welcome the creation of architecture at the European level that can coordinate national supervision,” Mr. Osborne said in Brussels, where he was meeting with fellow European Union finance ministers.“
From 1928 to 1991 the entire course of the economy was guided by a series of Five-Year Plans. Within 40 years, the nation evolved from a mainly agrarian society and became one of the world’s three top manufacturers of a large number of capital goods, heavy industrial products and weaponry. However, the USSR lagged far behind in the output of light industrial production and consumer durables, mostly because of inability of Gosplan to predict the demand for such products.
The complex demands of the modern economy and inflexible administration overwhelmed and constrained the central planners. Corruption and data fiddling became common practice among bureaucracy to report fulfilled targets and quotas thus entrenching the crisis
Central planning and control of the economy, what was ‘invested’, produced, where it was produced and who produced it, with each industry being set targets in their production, including government departments, services and police, whether they were needed or not.
Industries and Services providers all over the soviet union just met the targets in order to stay on the right side of the political powers, hence the biggest propaganda joke in the world about the ever increasing tractor stats, whilst the people queued endlessly for what was really needed but always in short or non existent supply, which in the end was mainly food and clothing..
The parallels with the EU in creating that centralised bureaucratic, economic and political control under 5 year plans are clearly visible.
A few days ago I wrote about how much influence our Unions have on formulating policy in the EU through the committees of the EESC, well here is some of the outcome of that, an item picked up The Albion Alliance presents site, which aggregates raw data coming out of the EU by institution category.
Contribution of the EESC on Innovation policy is the press release headline, the document is here.
“Innovation is not an ideological end in itself, it must be reflected in and be limited by society’s absorption capacity.” Gerd WOLF, EESC member, representative of the Helmholtz Association of German Research Centres.
This document lays out how the EU, not private enterprise, but the EU acting as the Federal State, will move forward to promote, select, produce, regulate and manage the implementation of products from its FP7 Research framework (yes, there have already been 6 others), shaping the economy of the EU according to its 5 year plan.
Promoting innovation and encouraging industry, and in particular small and medium-sized enterprises, to innovate is only possible in an attractive and rewarding legal, administrative and financial environment.
Those of us old enough will recognise the language in this document from long past Soviet News bulletins. Under the PF7 framework the EU will choose the projects, will choose the companies and facilities that will do the research and then decide who the outputs will go to, that is if it decides its something that we might need, or more correctly something the EU needs.
The EESC is quite happy to brag that this central control will be good for all of us.. whether we want it or not, and that we, the taxpayers will not only be footing the bill through the vast €multi-billion grant system, but will cover said ‘innovators’ for their failures as well.
Innovation means risking failure, as investigating the benefits of an invention means putting it into practice and checking whether there is a need for it; sometimes, the outcome is not successful.
However, failure can also bring new knowledge. Society must assess the risks associated with innovation.
The EESC has suggested setting up a risk fund to help compensate for the risks linked to innovation.
Do you see what they are doing here. Spending public money is seen as ‘investment’ rather than expenditure, a view peculiar to socialists who believe that the state IS the economy, and they set themselves up as the mouthpiece for society, or the vision of the society that their policies will create, that only they on behalf of that society can assess the risks involved with any particular innovation rather than let market forces decide.
From that NYT article again, The finance ministers agreed on Tuesday to create agencies overseeing insurance, banking and market trading, as well as a European Systemic Risk Board. Gosplan all over again.
This is exactly how products and production ground to stagnation in the Soviet Union. And we all know what risk funds are in EU parlance, if it works the company keeps the profits, if it fails the taxpayers get stung. Its called socialising risk. A huge draw for any company that is willing to become totally reliant on the good will of its political masters. It makes companies dependent upon the state for their business, so that eventually the State does become the economy.
Still can’t see the centralised nature of this.
Innovation must be compatible with the Union’s principles and values.
In other words, if the EU doesn’t like your innovation, inventions or products, you can’t make them and as we have seen in the past, products the EU doesn’t like it will regulate out of existence (light bulbs are a good example).
Innovation must be understood in the broadest sense, both for products and services brought to the market and innovations in the non-commercial sector or of a societal or social nature.
Ah, so this is for products that serve the EU.
Priorities should be defined in terms of society’s goals (health, environment, energy, etc.).
Unfortunately the members of said society never get a say in what their goals are, but..
European innovation strategy should be based on synergies and partnerships with private sector and civil society players.
the EU get to choose the players who will work for the EU as ‘partners’.
You have to understand that our initial entry into what is now the EU, the trading agreement called the EEC, was but one of the many steps towards a Soviet style, central planning society that governs every single aspect our lives. This particular section of the EESC (European Economic and Social Committee) is to ensure that we get the products set by the central planning function that will best serve the EU and only the EU’s goals, not inventive and profit motivated free business innovation, and not the taxpayer.
Under this kind of regime it is doubtful if there would ever have been a ‘need’ in the view of politicians for the car (public transport would suffice), passenger jets, the iPod, the free and open internet (this is going to be the subject of another post where the COE is now trying to regulate) and probably a whole range of free market products and services.
The EESC is probably the biggest single source of lifestyle changing policy in the EU. It is made up of 7 specialist social engineering committees. This is the mission statement of INT, the committee that produced the document outlined in this post:
The main task of the Section for the Single Market, Production and Consumption (INT) is to draft opinions for the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) at the request of the European Commission, the European Parliament, the Council of Ministers, on its own initiative, or at the request of EU Presidencies in office.
A key area of the Section’s responsibilities is the completion and smooth operation of the Single Market. This area includes:
• Industrial policy (both general and sectoral),
• Market policies,
• Competition policy,
• Services, including banking, commerce, insurance and tourism
(but excluding services of general interest),
• Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs),
• The social economy (co-operatives, mutual societies, associations and
• The professions,
• Company law,
• Intellectual property,
• Consumer protection,
• The customs union.
Single Market, Production and Consumption is simply EU newspeak for Single Economy, Central Planning. Nearly all of the key positions of real power in the EU, the unelected Commission, the Committee of the Regions, the EESC etc is made up of ‘ex’ Communists, Maoists and Marxists, either in political roles or as Trade Unionists.
I will leave it to you to decide how much your life is ruled by these unseen, unelected committees. Our politicians in Westminster only implement it, irrespective of which rosette they wear. You the voter pays for it, ALL, in more ways than one.