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Russian Manufacturing Productivity on Par with France'S. (In 1908).
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Lychakov, N. I., Saprykin, D. L., & Vanteeva, N. (2020). Not Backward: Comparative Labour Productivity In British And Russian Manufacturing, Circa 1908 (WP BRP 199/HUM/2020). National Research University Higher School of Economics. (h/t @devarbol)

Using data from official manufacturing censuses, we compare labour productivity in Great Britain and the Russian Empire around 1908. We find that Russia’s labour productivity was at 81.9 percent of the U.K. level. Russia’s productivity was on a par with France’s and significantly superior to Italy’s. We also find that the majority of Russian industries underperformed British ones. However, the industries that had been established or modernised during the state-induced industrialisation policies of the 1890s, such as the Southern metallurgy, performed on a par with their British counterparts. Russia’s alcohol, tobacco, and petrochemical sectors outperformed their British equivalents. Our findings suggest a revision of the view that, at the turn of the 20th century, Russian manufacturing was economically underdeveloped.

This recent paper says that the Russian Empire, far from being in a general sense of “economic backwardness”, was better viewed as essentially a two-tier economy:

  • An industrial economy that was operating at West European productivity levels and close to the technological frontier;
  • A near subsistence agricultural economy that was demographically much bigger, but feeding its labor surplus into the former.

However, even in absolute size, the labor force commanded by the former was bigger in absolute terms than in Britain or France, though smaller than in Germany.

There was increasing R&D, science was being harnessed in service of industry, and large investments were being made into modern industries.

What were the characteristics of the more labour-productive Russian industries? First, these industries were often highly export-oriented. The high-performing petrochemical, rubber, and butter industries exported a great share of their products, as can be seen from export statistics (Valetov, 2017). Second, these industries tended to invest heavily in research and development, as can be referred from the database of individual companies and the research centers they owned (MIPT, 2019). Successful firms collaborated with leading scientists, including Mendeleev, Ipatiev, Markovnikov, Lebedev, Ostromyslensky, and Byzov (Ostromyslensky, 1913; Ipatiev, 1945). The state often acted as a key facilitator of innovativeness. Authorities provided technical education, funded research projects and helped attract foreign investors(Kojevnikov, 2002). Third, the more labour productive firms often expanded into related industries (Gregg, 2020b). Such was the case with the firms owned by Nobel, Gukasov, Mantashev, Lianozov, and Shibaev, who had initially made large profits in the oil business (Kulikov, 2017; Kulikov and Kragh, 2019). These companies made large investments in electrical engineering, machine-building, shipbuilding, and chemical industries, as a result, forming large vertically and horizontally integrated industrial groups (Bovykin, 2001; Salomatina, forthcoming).

The manufacturing sector was 80% as productive as the British, about as much so as the French, and more so than the Italian:

(This is concordant with other things we know about the late Tsarist-era economy. By 1900, the Russian Empire had the world’s third largest stock market by market capitalization, only behind the US and Great Britain. It had Europe’s highest number of university students in absolute terms. At the more anecdotal level, there were Finnish Gastarbeiters in Saint-Petersburg offering horse sleigh rides to any part of the city for 30 kopeks. Finland was, of course, significantly more developed than than almost all of Russia outside the capital regions. But the latter were “First World” in a way it still wasn’t.)

It would also be cardinally different from, say, India, where there were many observations that manufacturing productivity was very low (e.g. see Gregory Clark’s “A Farewell to Alms”).

A 1929 report on the Indian industry in the Journal of the Textile Institute states baldly that “India is obliged to engage three persons in place of one employed in the Lancashire mills.”5 In 1930 Arno Pearse, the international textile expert, offered the opinion that “Labour in India is undoubtedly on a very low par, probably it comes next to Chinese labour in inefficiency, wastefulness, and lack of discipline.”

But it was much closer in that respect to Japan:

However, from 1907 to 1924 there was no increase, and perhaps a slight decline, in output per worker in Bombay. At the same time the Japanese cotton industry increased output per worker by 80 percent. By the late 1920s Japanese competition had eliminated all profits from the Bombay industry. As output per worker in Japanese mills marched ever upward through the 1920s and 1930s, Bombay mills were hardly able to cover their operating costs. By 1938 nearly 15 percent of the capacity in the Bombay mills had been scrapped.

Logically, it follows that if Russia was to urbanize those remaining peasants, drawing them into the urban high-productivity industries, you’d have had GDP/capita convergence with the “advanced economies”; perhaps not quite at German levels, but certainly France would seem to be within reason – and possibly ahead of Italy. (These would be results broadly congruent with what one might predict from average IQs under free market conditions).

The Soviets did of course urbanize at Russia – or, more precisely, they continued a pre-existing process, but at a much higher human cost than had been the case before them, losing half of Russia’s demographic potential in the thirty years after they seized power (Civil War famine, collectivization famine, Gulag, WW2 mismanagement, 1947 famine). However, during the Soviet period, manufacturing productivity relative to the developed world plummeted. As a consequence, these two things canceled out, so that by the 1980s Russians in the Soviet Union were no richer relative to the British than their predecessors had been in 1908.

In net terms, Communism and its consequences destroyed something like 75% of potential Russian GDP just within the borders of the Russian Federation. The best that Russia can realistically do within the next 30 years is reduce that to 50%.

 
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  1. Please keep off topic posts to the current Open Thread.

    If you are new to my work, start here.

    Commenting rules. Please note that anonymous comments are not allowed.

  2. As far as WW2 goes, I don’t think that mismanagement was necessarily the problem.

    We have to remember that Germany’s economy, military, and determination was formidable. It had a population of about 70 million when WW2 broke out.

    Add to that, the UK, USA, and other allies were not willing to open a second front until 1944, by then the war in Europe was on its way to being concluded.

    In short, when you are a country(Germany) that has allies(Italy, Romania, Finland, etc.) that number 3.8 million on June 22, 1941, and enter a country with such resentment for its citizens and a will to enslave its people based on a bizarre racial hierarchy system, you are going to leave behind a huge mess.

    Had the Soviet Union only lost 5 million people in WW2, and had Stalingrad never been touched, in addition to many small towns and villages, the USSR would have fared better.

    Still though, to rival a country like the USA throughout the Cold War after that kind of devastation is nothing less than impressive.

    • Agree: Lot
    • Replies: @Philip Owen
    @4Dchessmaster

    The UK had a 1st front in 1939 in the North Sea blockading Germany (A blockade teh Soviet Union strained mightily to defeat). Then there was The Atlantic and the air war in the English Channel not to mention North Africa. France put in an effort too.

    Replies: @4Dchessmaster

    , @Marshal Marlow
    @4Dchessmaster

    I too raised my eyebrows at the WW2 mismanagement claim. Seems to me that any country that can uproot its heavy manufacturing and rebuild it out of harms way one train carriage at a time is doing pretty well in the management stakes.

    Replies: @Some Guy, @vba

    , @John Burns, Gettysburg Partisan
    @4Dchessmaster

    I can see you are well and truly imbued with the usual Anglo-American liberal machine history.

    Notably, the minimization of the scope of Anglo-American Soviet support to the Soviet regime. Putting aside the fact that Operations Torch and Husky - plus the Battle of the Atlantic, plus the period of German defensive preparations for Overlord - were by no means small affairs, and soaked up large portions of Germany's limited resources, the best any stooge inspired by Soviet myth can do with regards to Lend-Lease is claim that it didn't make up the decisive edge and that the USSR could have won without it. But even if that were true (LOL), it doesn't change the error of your ways.

    When you say, "The war in Europe was well on its way to being concluded" before Overlord, that totally evades the question of whether or not the USSR could have defeated Germany without all of the Allied support before the summer of 1944.

    And then the usual nonsense about Germany's uniquely evil plans for racial enslavement, blah blah. I know no one here wants to read 'Stalin's War of Extermination' (Hoffmann), but that repeated cliche earns the "blah blah" descriptor I give it.

    As an American, I can tell you that Americans do tend to minimize the Soviet influence on the war.

    The difference is that, unlike most Americans, I agree with General Patton that we had no business ever allying with them; our government was, rather obviously, filled with their spies, who were too busy Keelhauling those Slavs to a far worse fate than the mythical monster Germany ever actually had in mind for them.

    Patton was there on the spot, and he independently reached the same conclusion as contemporary and future honest American historians like Barnes, Beard, Chamberlain, Fleming, et al. Once any present American has made this mental realization, all of the nonsense about the Soviet Union's war effort disappears. Mismanagement? Let me ask you something: why did Stalin avoid the victory parade in Berlin? It wasn't just because of frequent bouts of mismanagement - like, say, Operation Mars, where the golden boy himself, Zhukov, lost nearly half a million soldiers (apparently just a drop in the bucket to the Soviet-Mongol Empire). It was because Stalin had wanted a whole lot more than Berlin.

    Replies: @4Dchessmaster, @but an humble craftsman

  3. Logically, it follows that if Russia was to urbanize those remaining peasants, drawing them into the urban high-productivity industries, you’d have had GDP/capita convergence with the “advanced economies”; perhaps not quite at German levels, but certainly France would seem to be within reason – and possibly ahead of Italy. (These would be results broadly congruent with what one might predict from average IQs under free market conditions).

    This might actually be too pessimistic since Russia also has A LOT OF natural resources, which could have in turn increased its GDP PPP per capita even further than that.

    • Agree: Some Guy
    • Replies: @Philip Owen
    @Mr. XYZ

    Imperial Russia was very poor at urbanization. Industrialisation and export orientated agriculture (at least the food processing side) were relatively successful once railways, canals and ports had been built. No provision was made to accomodate the workers compared to British industrialists who often built large housing estates for their workers (tied housing only made illegal in the 1960's). Imperial Russia made no special provision for industrial workers. Skilled men had conspicuously less access to living space than in the UK or even Germany.

  4. How does modern Russian cultural production rank when compared to US in the ’30s and ’40s? Or modern Japan and SK, and why?

    US pop in 1940 was 132 million, including blacks. Current Russian pop is 146.6 million, compared to Jap 126 million and SK 51 million.

    Does piracy prevent Russia from being a bigger player, or is it other factors?

    • Replies: @AlexanderGrozny
    @songbird

    "Including Blacks"?

    Why is that relevant? An American is an American, regardless of Melanin.

  5. I thought it was generally accepted* that pre-Revolutionary Russia was actually doing rather well, though it may not have looked that way to the average worker, any more than a Lancashire mill worker thought he was doing well when Britain was the workshop of the world.

    * in my 1970s economic history classes at any event. On the other hand, Argentina was at Italy’s level of economic development in 1905. The past isn’t always the guide to the future, although it’s the way to bet. An interesting question – given what we know now, better to be raising a family in 1900 Argentina or 1900 Italy? You’d be poorer in Argentina, but your kids/grandkids wouldn’t have been sent to Caporetto or the Russian front – the Falklands or Belgrano at worst.

    • Replies: @AP
    @YetAnotherAnon


    An interesting question – given what we know now, better to be raising a family in 1900 Argentina or 1900 Italy? You’d be poorer in Argentina, but your kids/grandkids wouldn’t have been sent to Caporetto or the Russian front – the Falklands or Belgrano at worst.
     
    You'd be more likely to have great-grandkids in Argentina - compare the two countries' fertility rates.

    Replies: @AlexanderGrozny

    , @Shortsword
    @YetAnotherAnon

    Argentina was mostly an agricultural exporter. It didn't have the industry and human capital of Italy.

    Replies: @Kent Nationalist

  6. AP says:
    @YetAnotherAnon
    I thought it was generally accepted* that pre-Revolutionary Russia was actually doing rather well, though it may not have looked that way to the average worker, any more than a Lancashire mill worker thought he was doing well when Britain was the workshop of the world.

    * in my 1970s economic history classes at any event. On the other hand, Argentina was at Italy's level of economic development in 1905. The past isn't always the guide to the future, although it's the way to bet. An interesting question - given what we know now, better to be raising a family in 1900 Argentina or 1900 Italy? You'd be poorer in Argentina, but your kids/grandkids wouldn't have been sent to Caporetto or the Russian front - the Falklands or Belgrano at worst.

    Replies: @AP, @Shortsword

    An interesting question – given what we know now, better to be raising a family in 1900 Argentina or 1900 Italy? You’d be poorer in Argentina, but your kids/grandkids wouldn’t have been sent to Caporetto or the Russian front – the Falklands or Belgrano at worst.

    You’d be more likely to have great-grandkids in Argentina – compare the two countries’ fertility rates.

    • Replies: @AlexanderGrozny
    @AP

    The rate of childless in Italy is actually very similar to Argentina, it is just that Argentinians are much more likely to have 3+ children.

    Replies: @Philip Owen

  7. @YetAnotherAnon
    I thought it was generally accepted* that pre-Revolutionary Russia was actually doing rather well, though it may not have looked that way to the average worker, any more than a Lancashire mill worker thought he was doing well when Britain was the workshop of the world.

    * in my 1970s economic history classes at any event. On the other hand, Argentina was at Italy's level of economic development in 1905. The past isn't always the guide to the future, although it's the way to bet. An interesting question - given what we know now, better to be raising a family in 1900 Argentina or 1900 Italy? You'd be poorer in Argentina, but your kids/grandkids wouldn't have been sent to Caporetto or the Russian front - the Falklands or Belgrano at worst.

    Replies: @AP, @Shortsword

    Argentina was mostly an agricultural exporter. It didn’t have the industry and human capital of Italy.

    • Replies: @Kent Nationalist
    @Shortsword

    I expect the majority of Argentina's population in 1905 were either first or second generation European immigrants.

    Replies: @AP

  8. @Shortsword
    @YetAnotherAnon

    Argentina was mostly an agricultural exporter. It didn't have the industry and human capital of Italy.

    Replies: @Kent Nationalist

    I expect the majority of Argentina’s population in 1905 were either first or second generation European immigrants.

    • Replies: @AP
    @Kent Nationalist

    It also got mostly southern Italian and Spanish peasants. If the USA hadn't cut off the immigration flood from such countries in the early 20th century (causing the settlers to assimilate to Anglo culture rather than vice versa) America would have been a lot like Argentina. Better food and wine, but poorer and more corrupt. OTOH the European portion of the population would have much much higher than in our timeline.

  9. Anatoly,
    I first become of the economic dynamism of pre-Revolution Russia in Solzhenitsyn’s “August 1914”. For me at the time, it was quite a revelation!

  10. AP says:
    @Kent Nationalist
    @Shortsword

    I expect the majority of Argentina's population in 1905 were either first or second generation European immigrants.

    Replies: @AP

    It also got mostly southern Italian and Spanish peasants. If the USA hadn’t cut off the immigration flood from such countries in the early 20th century (causing the settlers to assimilate to Anglo culture rather than vice versa) America would have been a lot like Argentina. Better food and wine, but poorer and more corrupt. OTOH the European portion of the population would have much much higher than in our timeline.

  11. @4Dchessmaster
    As far as WW2 goes, I don't think that mismanagement was necessarily the problem.

    We have to remember that Germany's economy, military, and determination was formidable. It had a population of about 70 million when WW2 broke out.

    Add to that, the UK, USA, and other allies were not willing to open a second front until 1944, by then the war in Europe was on its way to being concluded.

    In short, when you are a country(Germany) that has allies(Italy, Romania, Finland, etc.) that number 3.8 million on June 22, 1941, and enter a country with such resentment for its citizens and a will to enslave its people based on a bizarre racial hierarchy system, you are going to leave behind a huge mess.

    Had the Soviet Union only lost 5 million people in WW2, and had Stalingrad never been touched, in addition to many small towns and villages, the USSR would have fared better.

    Still though, to rival a country like the USA throughout the Cold War after that kind of devastation is nothing less than impressive.

    Replies: @Philip Owen, @Marshal Marlow, @John Burns, Gettysburg Partisan

    The UK had a 1st front in 1939 in the North Sea blockading Germany (A blockade teh Soviet Union strained mightily to defeat). Then there was The Atlantic and the air war in the English Channel not to mention North Africa. France put in an effort too.

    • Replies: @4Dchessmaster
    @Philip Owen

    I'm aware of those. However, let's not forget that Harry Truman, then a Senator from Missouri, made the remark that "if the
    Germans are winning, then we should help the Russians, and if the Russians are winning, then we should help the Germans". This remark was not condemned at the time because many people secretly liked it. That cynical attitude towards Russians is a big part of why the second front that Stalin kept asking for was rebuffed. The Anglo-Americans mostly opened a front at Normandy because they feared the USSR liberating all the way to France.

    Replies: @Wency, @AP

  12. Russia has always had a resource curse which has made its cost base high during the peaks of the raw materials cycles. The exagerrated nature of these cycles makes it hard, when the economy is open, to retain an industrial base.

    The table doesn’t mention beef. Russia was the world’s leading exporter (US consumed much internally) during the period. This might be another component of food, drink and tobacco. Nevertheless I find myself scratching my head over such high productivity. The Russian peasantry was not incentivised to over produce. I suppose this is almost peak Stolypin peasant time.

    As it happens, this evening I was reading a paper about British investment in Russia pre 1914. By count of businesses there was a huge skew to oil, especially after 1892. A lot of mining and forestry or related activities too. The biggest British employers though were a cotton and jute factory in Odessa, a yarn spinning company in St Petersburg, agricultural machinery in Kirov. The Hughes works in Donetsk (The New Russia Company) is placed in Taganarog with only 292 employees and yet by 1914, there were over 4000 Welsh engineers and their families (more than a few with their own companies to be sure) in the Donbass so something has been missed somewhere. The author also counts Kodak as a British firm without the preface “Eastman”. Firms involved paper, textiles, and different knds of metallurgy (eg copper wire making) caught my eye. Rope and leather belting (the beef) to drive steam powered machinery back in the UK. Most investment was around St Petersburg, the oil producing areas or Siberia. Witte’s reforms had an impact on all this. British investment tended to teh low productivity businesses in Anatoly’s table, presumably by government direction, to upgrade them. Al;so no local competition for the investors.

    https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1559904/1/Final%20Thesis%201606.pdf

  13. @4Dchessmaster
    As far as WW2 goes, I don't think that mismanagement was necessarily the problem.

    We have to remember that Germany's economy, military, and determination was formidable. It had a population of about 70 million when WW2 broke out.

    Add to that, the UK, USA, and other allies were not willing to open a second front until 1944, by then the war in Europe was on its way to being concluded.

    In short, when you are a country(Germany) that has allies(Italy, Romania, Finland, etc.) that number 3.8 million on June 22, 1941, and enter a country with such resentment for its citizens and a will to enslave its people based on a bizarre racial hierarchy system, you are going to leave behind a huge mess.

    Had the Soviet Union only lost 5 million people in WW2, and had Stalingrad never been touched, in addition to many small towns and villages, the USSR would have fared better.

    Still though, to rival a country like the USA throughout the Cold War after that kind of devastation is nothing less than impressive.

    Replies: @Philip Owen, @Marshal Marlow, @John Burns, Gettysburg Partisan

    I too raised my eyebrows at the WW2 mismanagement claim. Seems to me that any country that can uproot its heavy manufacturing and rebuild it out of harms way one train carriage at a time is doing pretty well in the management stakes.

    • Replies: @Some Guy
    @Marshal Marlow

    Pretty sure he's talking about Stalin taking weeks to react to the invasion, causing millions of soviet soldiers to be sitting ducks, plus the purge of experienced officers. Stalin took a more hands-off approach later in the war I believe.

    With regards to industrial productivity, let's not forget that if a smaller part of the population is urbanized, then it's probably also a more elite part of the population. The smart fraction guys with interest in science, engineering and business born in the countryside were probably already in the cities, contributing to the high productivity.

    Another thing to consider is how big Russia's Ashkenazi population would be in a different timeline(biggest in the world?), and how that would affect productivity over time.

    Replies: @rkka

    , @vba
    @Marshal Marlow

    The people who did evacuation were different from people who managed military operations initially and its not very connected (and leading figures were shot after the war during the Leningrad affair, including Voznesensky who was a head of Gosplan and a nominal leader of Narkomats at the time), the start of the war was really gruesome and murderous for the population, far smaller countries would just collapse because the zone of occupation was just giant relative to the size of productive regions.

  14. A joke making the rounds about Russian manufacturing, heard at the time that U.S. nukes were first miniaturized, and there was concern that the Russians could smuggle an attache-case nuke into the US: “Don’r worry, the Russians would never be able to construct…an attache case.”

  15. @Marshal Marlow
    @4Dchessmaster

    I too raised my eyebrows at the WW2 mismanagement claim. Seems to me that any country that can uproot its heavy manufacturing and rebuild it out of harms way one train carriage at a time is doing pretty well in the management stakes.

    Replies: @Some Guy, @vba

    Pretty sure he’s talking about Stalin taking weeks to react to the invasion, causing millions of soviet soldiers to be sitting ducks, plus the purge of experienced officers. Stalin took a more hands-off approach later in the war I believe.

    With regards to industrial productivity, let’s not forget that if a smaller part of the population is urbanized, then it’s probably also a more elite part of the population. The smart fraction guys with interest in science, engineering and business born in the countryside were probably already in the cities, contributing to the high productivity.

    Another thing to consider is how big Russia’s Ashkenazi population would be in a different timeline(biggest in the world?), and how that would affect productivity over time.

    • Replies: @rkka
    @Some Guy

    "Pretty sure he’s talking about Stalin taking weeks to react to the invasion, causing millions of soviet soldiers to be sitting ducks, plus the purge of experienced officers. Stalin took a more hands-off approach later in the war I believe."

    In 6 weeks in 1940, the German army destroyed or put to headlong flight Western allied armies numbering about 3 million, at the cost of 27k German troops killed.

    In the first 7 weeks after 22 June 1941, the German Army destroyed Russian armies numbering about 3 million, at a cost of 83k German troops killed, plus thousands more Finnish, Italian, Hungarian, Romanian, and Slovak troops. (390k total German casualties).

  16. vba says:
    @Marshal Marlow
    @4Dchessmaster

    I too raised my eyebrows at the WW2 mismanagement claim. Seems to me that any country that can uproot its heavy manufacturing and rebuild it out of harms way one train carriage at a time is doing pretty well in the management stakes.

    Replies: @Some Guy, @vba

    The people who did evacuation were different from people who managed military operations initially and its not very connected (and leading figures were shot after the war during the Leningrad affair, including Voznesensky who was a head of Gosplan and a nominal leader of Narkomats at the time), the start of the war was really gruesome and murderous for the population, far smaller countries would just collapse because the zone of occupation was just giant relative to the size of productive regions.

  17. TG says:

    Let’s put this into perspective.

    Was Stalin a bad guy? Yes. In many objective ways, worse than Hitler.

    Is a dogmatic centrally controlled economy less efficient than a moderately regulated market economy? For sure.

    Is communism the worst thing ever? Double plus no!!!!

    In wonderful capitalist India and Bangladesh etc., there is widespread chronic malnutrition and the physical standard of living is inferior to late Medieval Europe (where malnutrition was basically unknown and people had plenty of food and beer etc.).

    What, you say that India is ‘socialist?’ Excuse me, what part of “work like a dog for a multinational corporation for a bare substance wage or you and your family go hungry” is in Das Kapital? Hm? No, places like India are capitalism red of tooth and sharp of claw. Everything is for profit, and of you have money you can do anything and buy anyone.

    Compared to modern capitalist globalist countries like India, the Soviet Union really was a workers paradise. Seriously. Look at old film clips of life in 1970’s East Germany, and compare them to film clips of children in the modern third world so badly fed that they grow up physically stunted.

    Capitalism vs. communism? A sideshow, compared to the main event, which is demographics.

    • Replies: @Some Guy
    @TG


    Capitalism vs. communism? A sideshow, compared to the main event, which is demographics.
     
    Sure, but non-white, non-East Asian countries are themselves a sideshow, so for the countries that actually matter communism vs capitalism ended up being the biggest issue for a period.
    , @AP
    @TG


    What, you say that India is ‘socialist?’ Excuse me, what part of “work like a dog for a multinational corporation for a bare substance wage or you and your family go hungry”
     
    India was less capitalist in the past, and the legacy is its ongoing poverty. It has seen spectacular improvement since then.

    Compared to modern capitalist globalist countries like India, the Soviet Union really was a workers paradise. Seriously. Look at old film clips of life in 1970’s East Germany, and compare them to film clips of children in the modern third world so badly fed that they grow up physically stunted.
     
    Better yet, compare North Korea to South Korea.

    Or compare East Germany to West Germany. Or Czechoslovakia and Hungary to Austria.

    Right after communism:

    In 1991 GDP PPP in 2011 dollars:

    Austria: $29,999
    Czechoslovakia: $13,947
    Hungary: $ $13,847

    During Communism:

    1975 per capita GDP PPP, in 2010 dollars:

    Austria: $20,193
    Czechoslovakia: $14,306
    Hungary: $14,125

    Before Communism, 1929:

    Austria: $6,413
    Czechoslovakia: $5,704
    Hungary: $6,024
  18. @TG
    Let's put this into perspective.

    Was Stalin a bad guy? Yes. In many objective ways, worse than Hitler.

    Is a dogmatic centrally controlled economy less efficient than a moderately regulated market economy? For sure.

    Is communism the worst thing ever? Double plus no!!!!

    In wonderful capitalist India and Bangladesh etc., there is widespread chronic malnutrition and the physical standard of living is inferior to late Medieval Europe (where malnutrition was basically unknown and people had plenty of food and beer etc.).

    What, you say that India is 'socialist?' Excuse me, what part of "work like a dog for a multinational corporation for a bare substance wage or you and your family go hungry" is in Das Kapital? Hm? No, places like India are capitalism red of tooth and sharp of claw. Everything is for profit, and of you have money you can do anything and buy anyone.

    Compared to modern capitalist globalist countries like India, the Soviet Union really was a workers paradise. Seriously. Look at old film clips of life in 1970's East Germany, and compare them to film clips of children in the modern third world so badly fed that they grow up physically stunted.

    Capitalism vs. communism? A sideshow, compared to the main event, which is demographics.

    Replies: @Some Guy, @AP

    Capitalism vs. communism? A sideshow, compared to the main event, which is demographics.

    Sure, but non-white, non-East Asian countries are themselves a sideshow, so for the countries that actually matter communism vs capitalism ended up being the biggest issue for a period.

  19. @Philip Owen
    @4Dchessmaster

    The UK had a 1st front in 1939 in the North Sea blockading Germany (A blockade teh Soviet Union strained mightily to defeat). Then there was The Atlantic and the air war in the English Channel not to mention North Africa. France put in an effort too.

    Replies: @4Dchessmaster

    I’m aware of those. However, let’s not forget that Harry Truman, then a Senator from Missouri, made the remark that “if the
    Germans are winning, then we should help the Russians, and if the Russians are winning, then we should help the Germans”. This remark was not condemned at the time because many people secretly liked it. That cynical attitude towards Russians is a big part of why the second front that Stalin kept asking for was rebuffed. The Anglo-Americans mostly opened a front at Normandy because they feared the USSR liberating all the way to France.

    • Replies: @Wency
    @4Dchessmaster

    That's called balance of power, it's a millennia-old, foundational concept in geopolitics. Typically the only time states back away from balance of power thinking is if they're making a play to be the hegemon themselves, or if they're too weak and irrelevant to influence the balance of power and instead decide to bandwagon. Yes, it's cynical, but the alternative to cynical geopolitics is Wilsonian idealism, which in practice doesn't seem to be any better.

    As for WW2, Churchill probably did have a balance-of-power thought about letting Hitler and Stalin fight it out as long as possible, but FDR and his Communist aides, who were angling for an invasion of France in 1942, didn't think about things the same way. Combined with natural risk aversion among the US Army brass (no one wanted to preside over a possible disaster in France and time appeared to be on their side), Churchill's thinking mostly won the day.

    Replies: @4Dchessmaster

    , @AP
    @4Dchessmaster

    At the time he said that, the nature of the German extermination camps wasn't fully known so as far as anyone knew, the Soviets were no worse than the Nazis. So letting both evil systems bleed each other until they both collapse (or the winner is a weakened shell) could have been seen as a lesser evil than allowing either one to completely dominate the Earth's largest land mass.

  20. As we are talking about the industrialization and level of sophistication of Russia vs France before WWI lets us look at one aspect, Map making and the printing of maps during WW1. The Imperial Museum published a book for map fundis (South African slang for lover of a certain subject) called Mapping The First World War.

    The book summarizes the number of maps produced by the various countries taking part in the war. The UK printed 34 million war maps, France over 30 million, Germany a staggering 775 million, Austria-Hungary between 65 and 310 million and Russia (1914 -17) some 320 million. Not bad for a supposedly backwater country.

  21. Reading the paper, I notice they are using Poor People’s Parity for labour productivity. I can play that game, too.

    Quick, guess which country has consistenly beaten Korea in terms of labour productivity when using PPP?

    Can anyone seriously buy the idea that Turkey is a more competitive economy than Korea for even a brief moment? Turkey, whose net wages are battling those of Albania’s? It’s time to liquidate the Poor People’s Parity cope. Once and for all.

    If you had used nominal unit labour costs per hour worked, you’d get Turkey at ~$4 and Korea at three or even four times that level. That would be much closer in accordance to what people intuitively accept (and they’d be right, too). Productivity is ultimately about your export competiveness. The higher prices you can fetch at the world market – not a fake PPP construct – for your goods and services, the more competitive you are. Rest is noise.

    The same must surely apply here. If you want a real measurement, you need to go back and select Russia’s output in constant rubles and then do a conversion to the exchange rates that were present in 1908 (data should exist that far back), dividing it by labour hours per unit of output. In all likelihood, the result you’d get is not pretty.

    • Replies: @Shortsword
    @Thulean Friend

    GDP PPP is supposed to be a simple way to estimate the size of the economy without taking exchange rates into account. Both "real" and "fake" are dumb descriptions for this. There are upsides and downsides. But the reason PPP is used is because it's simple and that it's a better predictor than nominal GDP for many things. It's not always going to be the measure you want to use and you can argue for that.

    , @Some Guy
    @Thulean Friend

    Are they using per hour worked? Because otherwise by per capita PPP South Korea is far ahead. Of course if a country works longer hours and has a more efficient labor market were unskilled labor can more easily get a job, then per hour productivity goes down. France for example has one of the highest per hour worked productivity because they have shorter work weeks, doesn't mean their human capital is better.

    Replies: @Thulean Friend

  22. I recall those remarks about British India’s low industrial productivity from Gregory Clark’s Farewell to Alms, but I hadn’t thought about Qing/Republican China’s low productivity. Which, given China’s current industrial productivity, would seem to imply there’s more going on here than HBD.

    I observe that, although Russia was late to industrialization, it was still capable of fielding armies that could compete with and threaten the European majors from at least Peter the Great onward. Meanwhile, although places like India and China were theoretically still wealthy in the 17th-18th centuries, they couldn’t field armies to save their lives. The East India Company conquered Bengal with 750 British men and a few thousand sepoys at Plassey, taking a few dozen casualties for their trouble. Qing China was too sturdy and cohesive to annex, but its armies were never much of a factor in the Europeans’ decisions to have their way with it.

    So while the economic historians might say 18th-mid-19th century India or China weren’t much poorer, if at all, next to contemporary Russia, both places fielded militaries that were some orders of magnitude more dysfunctional than Romanov Russia in its darkest hours. I have to think there is a link somewhere in there to industrial productivity.

    • Replies: @antibeast
    @Wency

    Qing China was too sturdy and cohesive to annex, but its armies were never much of a factor in the Europeans’ decisions to have their way with it.


     

    Not true at all. The Taiping Rebellion which cost some 20 million lives pretty much convinced the Western Powers that colonizing China would not be possible, given the ferocity with which the Han Chinese rebels fought the Manchu rulers, aided by the British and French. The Western Powers were satisfied after the Manchus acceded to their demands for trading ports and economic concessions, which spurred anti-Manchu sentiment amongst the Han Chinese. The problem was not the inability of the Han Chinese to wage war but the unwillingness of the Manchu rulers to allow the establishment of a modern army equipped with modern weapons for fear of being deposed by the Han Chinese which is exactly what happened after the Beiyang Army that was formed in 1901, rebelled against the Qing in 1911.

    After the founding of the Republic of China, no Western Power ever waged war again against the Chinese Nationalist Army, forcing the British to ally with Japan in order to protect their commercial interests in China.

    So while the economic historians might say 18th-mid-19th century India or China weren’t much poorer, if at all, next to contemporary Russia, both places fielded militaries that were some orders of magnitude more dysfunctional than Romanov Russia in its darkest hours. I have to think there is a link somewhere in there to industrial productivity.


     

    Complete nonsense. The Qing Dynasty at its prime was the most militaristic period in Chinese history, having doubled Chinese territory by military conquests. The Spanish, Portuguese and the Dutch feared the Qing Dynasty and avoided any military engagement with China during the colonial period of Southeast Asia.

    As for industrial productivity, China is the world's largest manufacturing hub today, having surpassed the USA ten years ago, with its economy most likely to surpass the USA in less than ten years time, thereby reclaiming its status as the world's largest economy which it held for 2,000 of the last 2,200 years.

    Industrial productivity is correlated to physical infrastructure such as railroads, electricity, seaports, power plants and other economic assets while education, healthcare, welfare and culture is what drives labor productivity, both of which hardly existed during Qing China. After the founding of the Republic of China, Chinese industrial and labor productivity grew rapidly due to the establishment of the Chinese Nationalist educational system as well as a modern industrial Capitalist economic system, interrupted only by the Chinese Civil War and Second Sino-Japanese War.

    Replies: @China Japan and Korea Bromance of Three Kingdoms, @showmethereal

  23. @4Dchessmaster
    @Philip Owen

    I'm aware of those. However, let's not forget that Harry Truman, then a Senator from Missouri, made the remark that "if the
    Germans are winning, then we should help the Russians, and if the Russians are winning, then we should help the Germans". This remark was not condemned at the time because many people secretly liked it. That cynical attitude towards Russians is a big part of why the second front that Stalin kept asking for was rebuffed. The Anglo-Americans mostly opened a front at Normandy because they feared the USSR liberating all the way to France.

    Replies: @Wency, @AP

    That’s called balance of power, it’s a millennia-old, foundational concept in geopolitics. Typically the only time states back away from balance of power thinking is if they’re making a play to be the hegemon themselves, or if they’re too weak and irrelevant to influence the balance of power and instead decide to bandwagon. Yes, it’s cynical, but the alternative to cynical geopolitics is Wilsonian idealism, which in practice doesn’t seem to be any better.

    As for WW2, Churchill probably did have a balance-of-power thought about letting Hitler and Stalin fight it out as long as possible, but FDR and his Communist aides, who were angling for an invasion of France in 1942, didn’t think about things the same way. Combined with natural risk aversion among the US Army brass (no one wanted to preside over a possible disaster in France and time appeared to be on their side), Churchill’s thinking mostly won the day.

    • Replies: @4Dchessmaster
    @Wency

    I know, but the hypocrisy and the outrage is what makes my blood boil.

    Whenever China, Iran, and Russia do the same thing, the average Westerner reacts with such outrage at the thought, while they go ahead and do that as a rule.

    The British/Americans are stereotyped as honest and democratic with a sense of "fair play" as they always drone on about, while the Russians and other Easterners are "devious and sly" for simply mirroring the tactics that have always been used by the Eternal Anglo and his minions.

  24. @Thulean Friend
    Reading the paper, I notice they are using Poor People's Parity for labour productivity. I can play that game, too.

    Quick, guess which country has consistenly beaten Korea in terms of labour productivity when using PPP?

    https://i.imgur.com/WPW2tcZ.png

    Can anyone seriously buy the idea that Turkey is a more competitive economy than Korea for even a brief moment? Turkey, whose net wages are battling those of Albania's? It's time to liquidate the Poor People's Parity cope. Once and for all.

    If you had used nominal unit labour costs per hour worked, you'd get Turkey at ~$4 and Korea at three or even four times that level. That would be much closer in accordance to what people intuitively accept (and they'd be right, too). Productivity is ultimately about your export competiveness. The higher prices you can fetch at the world market - not a fake PPP construct - for your goods and services, the more competitive you are. Rest is noise.

    The same must surely apply here. If you want a real measurement, you need to go back and select Russia's output in constant rubles and then do a conversion to the exchange rates that were present in 1908 (data should exist that far back), dividing it by labour hours per unit of output. In all likelihood, the result you'd get is not pretty.

    Replies: @Shortsword, @Some Guy

    GDP PPP is supposed to be a simple way to estimate the size of the economy without taking exchange rates into account. Both “real” and “fake” are dumb descriptions for this. There are upsides and downsides. But the reason PPP is used is because it’s simple and that it’s a better predictor than nominal GDP for many things. It’s not always going to be the measure you want to use and you can argue for that.

    • Agree: showmethereal
  25. @Thulean Friend
    Reading the paper, I notice they are using Poor People's Parity for labour productivity. I can play that game, too.

    Quick, guess which country has consistenly beaten Korea in terms of labour productivity when using PPP?

    https://i.imgur.com/WPW2tcZ.png

    Can anyone seriously buy the idea that Turkey is a more competitive economy than Korea for even a brief moment? Turkey, whose net wages are battling those of Albania's? It's time to liquidate the Poor People's Parity cope. Once and for all.

    If you had used nominal unit labour costs per hour worked, you'd get Turkey at ~$4 and Korea at three or even four times that level. That would be much closer in accordance to what people intuitively accept (and they'd be right, too). Productivity is ultimately about your export competiveness. The higher prices you can fetch at the world market - not a fake PPP construct - for your goods and services, the more competitive you are. Rest is noise.

    The same must surely apply here. If you want a real measurement, you need to go back and select Russia's output in constant rubles and then do a conversion to the exchange rates that were present in 1908 (data should exist that far back), dividing it by labour hours per unit of output. In all likelihood, the result you'd get is not pretty.

    Replies: @Shortsword, @Some Guy

    Are they using per hour worked? Because otherwise by per capita PPP South Korea is far ahead. Of course if a country works longer hours and has a more efficient labor market were unskilled labor can more easily get a job, then per hour productivity goes down. France for example has one of the highest per hour worked productivity because they have shorter work weeks, doesn’t mean their human capital is better.

    • Replies: @Thulean Friend
    @Some Guy

    GDP per hour worked - properly measured using nominal outputs - is a better measurement of a country's competitiveness than GDP per capita. The latter is affected by working hours and working smarter > working longer.

    The countries with the highest GDP per hour worked in nominal terms are also those with the stongest economies (USA, Switzerland etc). France does less well because you are using the PPP-weighted measurements where France does better than it should. So you're repeating the same exact error.

    There are many things affecting productivity. Human capital is just one. You're naïve if you think it is the only thing that matters.

    Everything gets fucked up by using Poor People's Parity, where you get mickey mouse results like Turkey being more productive than South Korea. Using nominal would crush all that nonsense. The same, of course, applies to historical comparisons.

    Replies: @AP, @Some Guy

  26. @Wency
    @4Dchessmaster

    That's called balance of power, it's a millennia-old, foundational concept in geopolitics. Typically the only time states back away from balance of power thinking is if they're making a play to be the hegemon themselves, or if they're too weak and irrelevant to influence the balance of power and instead decide to bandwagon. Yes, it's cynical, but the alternative to cynical geopolitics is Wilsonian idealism, which in practice doesn't seem to be any better.

    As for WW2, Churchill probably did have a balance-of-power thought about letting Hitler and Stalin fight it out as long as possible, but FDR and his Communist aides, who were angling for an invasion of France in 1942, didn't think about things the same way. Combined with natural risk aversion among the US Army brass (no one wanted to preside over a possible disaster in France and time appeared to be on their side), Churchill's thinking mostly won the day.

    Replies: @4Dchessmaster

    I know, but the hypocrisy and the outrage is what makes my blood boil.

    Whenever China, Iran, and Russia do the same thing, the average Westerner reacts with such outrage at the thought, while they go ahead and do that as a rule.

    The British/Americans are stereotyped as honest and democratic with a sense of “fair play” as they always drone on about, while the Russians and other Easterners are “devious and sly” for simply mirroring the tactics that have always been used by the Eternal Anglo and his minions.

  27. AP says:
    @TG
    Let's put this into perspective.

    Was Stalin a bad guy? Yes. In many objective ways, worse than Hitler.

    Is a dogmatic centrally controlled economy less efficient than a moderately regulated market economy? For sure.

    Is communism the worst thing ever? Double plus no!!!!

    In wonderful capitalist India and Bangladesh etc., there is widespread chronic malnutrition and the physical standard of living is inferior to late Medieval Europe (where malnutrition was basically unknown and people had plenty of food and beer etc.).

    What, you say that India is 'socialist?' Excuse me, what part of "work like a dog for a multinational corporation for a bare substance wage or you and your family go hungry" is in Das Kapital? Hm? No, places like India are capitalism red of tooth and sharp of claw. Everything is for profit, and of you have money you can do anything and buy anyone.

    Compared to modern capitalist globalist countries like India, the Soviet Union really was a workers paradise. Seriously. Look at old film clips of life in 1970's East Germany, and compare them to film clips of children in the modern third world so badly fed that they grow up physically stunted.

    Capitalism vs. communism? A sideshow, compared to the main event, which is demographics.

    Replies: @Some Guy, @AP

    What, you say that India is ‘socialist?’ Excuse me, what part of “work like a dog for a multinational corporation for a bare substance wage or you and your family go hungry”

    India was less capitalist in the past, and the legacy is its ongoing poverty. It has seen spectacular improvement since then.

    Compared to modern capitalist globalist countries like India, the Soviet Union really was a workers paradise. Seriously. Look at old film clips of life in 1970’s East Germany, and compare them to film clips of children in the modern third world so badly fed that they grow up physically stunted.

    Better yet, compare North Korea to South Korea.

    Or compare East Germany to West Germany. Or Czechoslovakia and Hungary to Austria.

    Right after communism:

    In 1991 GDP PPP in 2011 dollars:

    Austria: $29,999
    Czechoslovakia: $13,947
    Hungary: $ $13,847

    During Communism:

    1975 per capita GDP PPP, in 2010 dollars:

    Austria: $20,193
    Czechoslovakia: $14,306
    Hungary: $14,125

    Before Communism, 1929:

    Austria: $6,413
    Czechoslovakia: $5,704
    Hungary: $6,024

    • Agree: Philip Owen
  28. AP says:
    @4Dchessmaster
    @Philip Owen

    I'm aware of those. However, let's not forget that Harry Truman, then a Senator from Missouri, made the remark that "if the
    Germans are winning, then we should help the Russians, and if the Russians are winning, then we should help the Germans". This remark was not condemned at the time because many people secretly liked it. That cynical attitude towards Russians is a big part of why the second front that Stalin kept asking for was rebuffed. The Anglo-Americans mostly opened a front at Normandy because they feared the USSR liberating all the way to France.

    Replies: @Wency, @AP

    At the time he said that, the nature of the German extermination camps wasn’t fully known so as far as anyone knew, the Soviets were no worse than the Nazis. So letting both evil systems bleed each other until they both collapse (or the winner is a weakened shell) could have been seen as a lesser evil than allowing either one to completely dominate the Earth’s largest land mass.

    • Agree: Philip Owen
  29. Ohhh. And I thought from the title that Anatoly was going to judge the modern Russian economy equivalent to France in 1908!

  30. @Some Guy
    @Thulean Friend

    Are they using per hour worked? Because otherwise by per capita PPP South Korea is far ahead. Of course if a country works longer hours and has a more efficient labor market were unskilled labor can more easily get a job, then per hour productivity goes down. France for example has one of the highest per hour worked productivity because they have shorter work weeks, doesn't mean their human capital is better.

    Replies: @Thulean Friend

    GDP per hour worked – properly measured using nominal outputs – is a better measurement of a country’s competitiveness than GDP per capita. The latter is affected by working hours and working smarter > working longer.

    The countries with the highest GDP per hour worked in nominal terms are also those with the stongest economies (USA, Switzerland etc). France does less well because you are using the PPP-weighted measurements where France does better than it should. So you’re repeating the same exact error.

    There are many things affecting productivity. Human capital is just one. You’re naïve if you think it is the only thing that matters.

    Everything gets fucked up by using Poor People’s Parity, where you get mickey mouse results like Turkey being more productive than South Korea. Using nominal would crush all that nonsense. The same, of course, applies to historical comparisons.

    • Replies: @AP
    @Thulean Friend

    Okay, but when the ruble collapsed Russia's GDP nominal likewise declined significantly. But this was not a realistic reflection of Russia's actual economy collapsing.

    Replies: @Thulean Friend

    , @Some Guy
    @Thulean Friend


    using Poor People’s Parity, where you get mickey mouse results like Turkey being more productive than South Korea.
     
    Only if you use per hour worked. If Russia instituted a 20-hour work week their productivity per hour could skyrocket, but that would not reflect an increase in Russia's industrial or demographic potential.

    Likewise if a lot of unskilled Russian laborers became unemployed/employed part-time/started working under the table(problems I believe common in Turkey), productivity per hour worked could increase. France has higher productivity than Germany by your preferred measure, probably because of lower employment rate etc.

    GDP per capita is better than GDP per hour worked if you want to know how productive the society is including how effective it is at getting people into work. Ideally GDP per capita excluding children I suppose.
  31. @Thulean Friend
    @Some Guy

    GDP per hour worked - properly measured using nominal outputs - is a better measurement of a country's competitiveness than GDP per capita. The latter is affected by working hours and working smarter > working longer.

    The countries with the highest GDP per hour worked in nominal terms are also those with the stongest economies (USA, Switzerland etc). France does less well because you are using the PPP-weighted measurements where France does better than it should. So you're repeating the same exact error.

    There are many things affecting productivity. Human capital is just one. You're naïve if you think it is the only thing that matters.

    Everything gets fucked up by using Poor People's Parity, where you get mickey mouse results like Turkey being more productive than South Korea. Using nominal would crush all that nonsense. The same, of course, applies to historical comparisons.

    Replies: @AP, @Some Guy

    Okay, but when the ruble collapsed Russia’s GDP nominal likewise declined significantly. But this was not a realistic reflection of Russia’s actual economy collapsing.

    • Replies: @Thulean Friend
    @AP

    It was an accurate reflection that their previous economy was unsustainable. The ruble was overvalued and had to go down. Sometimes currencies do drastic adjustments. But notice that it has been 7 years since that event, and the ruble is not close to recovering.

    https://i.imgur.com/BiuwbPi.png

    The answer fundamentally lies in Russia's non-oil sector. Had it been productive, it would have picked up the slack and allowed the ruble to recuperate. It obviously has not happened. Australia and Canada are both exporting tons of commodities for their exports, yet they have succeeded to create prosperous non-commodities sectors that are highly productive. Russia has completely failed.

    There are instances where using nominal in current prices is flawed, e.g. Japan, where wild price swings can give a misleading impression due to a combination of factors (stagnant economy for 20+ years, yen being highly traded on the FX markets as a hedge against other currencies etc). But the solution there too is a simple yet elegant one: use constant prices for a fixed base year. Just move the base year every ten years or so. For countries which are not as stagnant as Japan, the Atlas method is more appropriate and is my preferred measurement for most countries.

  32. @AP
    @Thulean Friend

    Okay, but when the ruble collapsed Russia's GDP nominal likewise declined significantly. But this was not a realistic reflection of Russia's actual economy collapsing.

    Replies: @Thulean Friend

    It was an accurate reflection that their previous economy was unsustainable. The ruble was overvalued and had to go down. Sometimes currencies do drastic adjustments. But notice that it has been 7 years since that event, and the ruble is not close to recovering.

    The answer fundamentally lies in Russia’s non-oil sector. Had it been productive, it would have picked up the slack and allowed the ruble to recuperate. It obviously has not happened. Australia and Canada are both exporting tons of commodities for their exports, yet they have succeeded to create prosperous non-commodities sectors that are highly productive. Russia has completely failed.

    There are instances where using nominal in current prices is flawed, e.g. Japan, where wild price swings can give a misleading impression due to a combination of factors (stagnant economy for 20+ years, yen being highly traded on the FX markets as a hedge against other currencies etc). But the solution there too is a simple yet elegant one: use constant prices for a fixed base year. Just move the base year every ten years or so. For countries which are not as stagnant as Japan, the Atlas method is more appropriate and is my preferred measurement for most countries.

  33. @Thulean Friend
    @Some Guy

    GDP per hour worked - properly measured using nominal outputs - is a better measurement of a country's competitiveness than GDP per capita. The latter is affected by working hours and working smarter > working longer.

    The countries with the highest GDP per hour worked in nominal terms are also those with the stongest economies (USA, Switzerland etc). France does less well because you are using the PPP-weighted measurements where France does better than it should. So you're repeating the same exact error.

    There are many things affecting productivity. Human capital is just one. You're naïve if you think it is the only thing that matters.

    Everything gets fucked up by using Poor People's Parity, where you get mickey mouse results like Turkey being more productive than South Korea. Using nominal would crush all that nonsense. The same, of course, applies to historical comparisons.

    Replies: @AP, @Some Guy

    using Poor People’s Parity, where you get mickey mouse results like Turkey being more productive than South Korea.

    Only if you use per hour worked. If Russia instituted a 20-hour work week their productivity per hour could skyrocket, but that would not reflect an increase in Russia’s industrial or demographic potential.

    Likewise if a lot of unskilled Russian laborers became unemployed/employed part-time/started working under the table(problems I believe common in Turkey), productivity per hour worked could increase. France has higher productivity than Germany by your preferred measure, probably because of lower employment rate etc.

    GDP per capita is better than GDP per hour worked if you want to know how productive the society is including how effective it is at getting people into work. Ideally GDP per capita excluding children I suppose.

  34. @Wency
    I recall those remarks about British India's low industrial productivity from Gregory Clark's Farewell to Alms, but I hadn't thought about Qing/Republican China's low productivity. Which, given China's current industrial productivity, would seem to imply there's more going on here than HBD.

    I observe that, although Russia was late to industrialization, it was still capable of fielding armies that could compete with and threaten the European majors from at least Peter the Great onward. Meanwhile, although places like India and China were theoretically still wealthy in the 17th-18th centuries, they couldn't field armies to save their lives. The East India Company conquered Bengal with 750 British men and a few thousand sepoys at Plassey, taking a few dozen casualties for their trouble. Qing China was too sturdy and cohesive to annex, but its armies were never much of a factor in the Europeans' decisions to have their way with it.

    So while the economic historians might say 18th-mid-19th century India or China weren't much poorer, if at all, next to contemporary Russia, both places fielded militaries that were some orders of magnitude more dysfunctional than Romanov Russia in its darkest hours. I have to think there is a link somewhere in there to industrial productivity.

    Replies: @antibeast

    Qing China was too sturdy and cohesive to annex, but its armies were never much of a factor in the Europeans’ decisions to have their way with it.

    Not true at all. The Taiping Rebellion which cost some 20 million lives pretty much convinced the Western Powers that colonizing China would not be possible, given the ferocity with which the Han Chinese rebels fought the Manchu rulers, aided by the British and French. The Western Powers were satisfied after the Manchus acceded to their demands for trading ports and economic concessions, which spurred anti-Manchu sentiment amongst the Han Chinese. The problem was not the inability of the Han Chinese to wage war but the unwillingness of the Manchu rulers to allow the establishment of a modern army equipped with modern weapons for fear of being deposed by the Han Chinese which is exactly what happened after the Beiyang Army that was formed in 1901, rebelled against the Qing in 1911.

    After the founding of the Republic of China, no Western Power ever waged war again against the Chinese Nationalist Army, forcing the British to ally with Japan in order to protect their commercial interests in China.

    So while the economic historians might say 18th-mid-19th century India or China weren’t much poorer, if at all, next to contemporary Russia, both places fielded militaries that were some orders of magnitude more dysfunctional than Romanov Russia in its darkest hours. I have to think there is a link somewhere in there to industrial productivity.

    Complete nonsense. The Qing Dynasty at its prime was the most militaristic period in Chinese history, having doubled Chinese territory by military conquests. The Spanish, Portuguese and the Dutch feared the Qing Dynasty and avoided any military engagement with China during the colonial period of Southeast Asia.

    As for industrial productivity, China is the world’s largest manufacturing hub today, having surpassed the USA ten years ago, with its economy most likely to surpass the USA in less than ten years time, thereby reclaiming its status as the world’s largest economy which it held for 2,000 of the last 2,200 years.

    Industrial productivity is correlated to physical infrastructure such as railroads, electricity, seaports, power plants and other economic assets while education, healthcare, welfare and culture is what drives labor productivity, both of which hardly existed during Qing China. After the founding of the Republic of China, Chinese industrial and labor productivity grew rapidly due to the establishment of the Chinese Nationalist educational system as well as a modern industrial Capitalist economic system, interrupted only by the Chinese Civil War and Second Sino-Japanese War.

    • Agree: Philip Owen
    • LOL: EldnahYm
    • Replies: @China Japan and Korea Bromance of Three Kingdoms
    @antibeast


    The problem was not the inability of the Han Chinese to wage war but the unwillingness of the Manchu rulers to allow the establishment of a modern army equipped with modern weapons for fear of being deposed by the Han Chinese which is exactly what happened after the Beiyang Army that was formed in 1901, rebelled against the Qing in 1911.
     
    Beiyang Army descended from Zeng Guofan's Xiang Army and Li Hongzhang's Huai Army; who put down the Taipings.

    Replies: @antibeast

    , @showmethereal
    @antibeast

    You are correct that the Manchu did not want to have a Han army... They indeed worked with the Mongols to keep the Han under both within China at the time. But toward the end of the Qing they were indeed willing to let the Hui Muslims fight. The foreigners were afraid of the way the Hui fought fiercely.

    As to the industrialization and productivity - I don't know enough about Russian history to compare

  35. I’m largely judging the Qing by their performance in the Opium Wars, which were basically contemporaneous with the Crimean War. Perhaps that’s not entirely fair, but it’s still illustrative of something.

    As for industrial productivity, China is the world’s largest manufacturing hub today

    Yes, I made the same point, which is why HBD can’t explain this with regards to China (unlike perhaps India).

    Industrial productivity is correlated to physical infrastructure such as railroads, electricity, seaports, power plants and other economic assets while education, healthcare, welfare and culture is what drives labor productivity, both of which hardly existed during Qing China.

    The sorts of observations about labor productivity that Gregory Clark was making about India don’t have much to do with things like infrastructure or healthcare. I don’t think they even necessarily have much to do with education — in both cases, in the early stages of industrialization you’re pulling essentially unlettered peasants from the countryside to work in factories, and these are ground-level observations about needing multiple uneducated Indians to do the work of a single uneducated European.

    I again am not as familiar with the observations about 19th century Chinese industrial labor productivity, as this post is the first I’ve heard of them, so I don’t know if they’re entirely analogous to the observations from India. But I’m speculating that in building a modern mid-19th century army in a pre-industrial society, perhaps some level of regimentation of society has already happened such that the population is more adapted to industrial labor.

    • Replies: @antibeast
    @Wency



    I’m largely judging the Qing by their performance in the Opium Wars, which were basically contemporaneous with the Crimean War. Perhaps that’s not entirely fair, but it’s still illustrative of something.

     

    The Qing Dynasty capitulated too quickly during the Opium Wars which is why the Han Chinese rebelled against the Manchu rulers. My view is that the Western Powers bribed the Manchu rulers which explains why the British and French ended up defending the Qing Dynasty during the Taiping Rebellion.

    A more accurate comparison of the relative performance of the Qing Armies and the Western Powers is the Sino-French War of 1884-1885, as described in Wikipedia:


    The Sino-French War also known as the Tonkin War was a limited conflict fought from August 1884 through April 1885. There was no declaration of war. Militarily it was a stalemate. The Chinese armies performed better than in other nineteenth-century wars and the war ended with French retreat on land. However, one consequence was that France supplanted China's control of Tonkin (northern Vietnam). The war strengthened the dominance of Empress Dowager Cixi over the Chinese government, but brought down the government of Prime Minister Jules Ferry in Paris. Both sides were satisfied with the Treaty of Tientsin. According to Lloyd Eastman, "neither nation reaped diplomatic gains."

     

    The Qing Armies defeated the French Army in land battles but lost the sea battles to the French Navy. The war ended in a military stalemate with concessions made by both sides and neither paying either side any indemnity. Politically, the war strengthened the Qing Dynasty but weakened the French government of Jules Ferry which collapsed almost immediately when news of the military outcome reached Paris.


    The sorts of observations about labor productivity that Gregory Clark was making about India don’t have much to do with things like infrastructure or healthcare. I don’t think they even necessarily have much to do with education — in both cases, in the early stages of industrialization you’re pulling essentially unlettered peasants from the countryside to work in factories, and these are ground-level observations about needing multiple uneducated Indians to do the work of a single uneducated European.

     

    This article refutes many of the dubious conclusions made by Gregory Clark regarding the disparity in economic outcomes between the West and non-West such as India:

    http://faculty.econ.ucdavis.edu/faculty/gclark/Farewell%20to%20Alms/Allen_JEL_Review.pdf


    To advance, we need to pay more attention to institutions and to culture. Clark’s description of the cotton mills shows that it is not laziness or incapacity that led to the proliferation of jobs but rather a set of deals between workers, members of their families and the communities from which they came, the owners and managers of the mills, and even the government whose investigations provide so much of the material to make Clark’s case. By analyzing their interests and opportunities, we might understand the staffing patterns observed by Clark.

    A Farewell to Alms is readable because it offers sweeping answers based upon parsimonious theory to complex questions about long run economic growth. Clark’s answers resonate with today’s headlines, for he has written an economic history of the world that is the counterpart to the “clash of civilizations.” Indeed, his biological arguments for the superiority of Anglo–American culture make the differences between the West and the Rest unbridgeable and a source of perpetual conflict. Normally, it is distressing to find that the central theses of a book are contradicted by well known evidence, but in this case it is a relief given the pessimistic prospect that A Farewell to Alms holds out for the future of the world.

     

    Clark relies too much on anecdotal evidence by making dubious conclusions regarding his personal observation that Indian cotton mills employ large numbers of workers based on kinship as evidence of the allegedly poor quality of Indian labor, without situating that kind of employment practices on its particularistic Indian social-cultural environment.

    Replies: @China Japan and Korea Bromance of Three Kingdoms

  36. @Wency
    I'm largely judging the Qing by their performance in the Opium Wars, which were basically contemporaneous with the Crimean War. Perhaps that's not entirely fair, but it's still illustrative of something.

    As for industrial productivity, China is the world’s largest manufacturing hub today
     
    Yes, I made the same point, which is why HBD can't explain this with regards to China (unlike perhaps India).

    Industrial productivity is correlated to physical infrastructure such as railroads, electricity, seaports, power plants and other economic assets while education, healthcare, welfare and culture is what drives labor productivity, both of which hardly existed during Qing China.
     
    The sorts of observations about labor productivity that Gregory Clark was making about India don't have much to do with things like infrastructure or healthcare. I don't think they even necessarily have much to do with education -- in both cases, in the early stages of industrialization you're pulling essentially unlettered peasants from the countryside to work in factories, and these are ground-level observations about needing multiple uneducated Indians to do the work of a single uneducated European.

    I again am not as familiar with the observations about 19th century Chinese industrial labor productivity, as this post is the first I've heard of them, so I don't know if they're entirely analogous to the observations from India. But I'm speculating that in building a modern mid-19th century army in a pre-industrial society, perhaps some level of regimentation of society has already happened such that the population is more adapted to industrial labor.

    Replies: @antibeast

    I’m largely judging the Qing by their performance in the Opium Wars, which were basically contemporaneous with the Crimean War. Perhaps that’s not entirely fair, but it’s still illustrative of something.

    The Qing Dynasty capitulated too quickly during the Opium Wars which is why the Han Chinese rebelled against the Manchu rulers. My view is that the Western Powers bribed the Manchu rulers which explains why the British and French ended up defending the Qing Dynasty during the Taiping Rebellion.

    A more accurate comparison of the relative performance of the Qing Armies and the Western Powers is the Sino-French War of 1884-1885, as described in Wikipedia:

    The Sino-French War also known as the Tonkin War was a limited conflict fought from August 1884 through April 1885. There was no declaration of war. Militarily it was a stalemate. The Chinese armies performed better than in other nineteenth-century wars and the war ended with French retreat on land. However, one consequence was that France supplanted China’s control of Tonkin (northern Vietnam). The war strengthened the dominance of Empress Dowager Cixi over the Chinese government, but brought down the government of Prime Minister Jules Ferry in Paris. Both sides were satisfied with the Treaty of Tientsin. According to Lloyd Eastman, “neither nation reaped diplomatic gains.”

    The Qing Armies defeated the French Army in land battles but lost the sea battles to the French Navy. The war ended in a military stalemate with concessions made by both sides and neither paying either side any indemnity. Politically, the war strengthened the Qing Dynasty but weakened the French government of Jules Ferry which collapsed almost immediately when news of the military outcome reached Paris.

    The sorts of observations about labor productivity that Gregory Clark was making about India don’t have much to do with things like infrastructure or healthcare. I don’t think they even necessarily have much to do with education — in both cases, in the early stages of industrialization you’re pulling essentially unlettered peasants from the countryside to work in factories, and these are ground-level observations about needing multiple uneducated Indians to do the work of a single uneducated European.

    This article refutes many of the dubious conclusions made by Gregory Clark regarding the disparity in economic outcomes between the West and non-West such as India:

    http://faculty.econ.ucdavis.edu/faculty/gclark/Farewell%20to%20Alms/Allen_JEL_Review.pdf

    To advance, we need to pay more attention to institutions and to culture. Clark’s description of the cotton mills shows that it is not laziness or incapacity that led to the proliferation of jobs but rather a set of deals between workers, members of their families and the communities from which they came, the owners and managers of the mills, and even the government whose investigations provide so much of the material to make Clark’s case. By analyzing their interests and opportunities, we might understand the staffing patterns observed by Clark.

    A Farewell to Alms is readable because it offers sweeping answers based upon parsimonious theory to complex questions about long run economic growth. Clark’s answers resonate with today’s headlines, for he has written an economic history of the world that is the counterpart to the “clash of civilizations.” Indeed, his biological arguments for the superiority of Anglo–American culture make the differences between the West and the Rest unbridgeable and a source of perpetual conflict. Normally, it is distressing to find that the central theses of a book are contradicted by well known evidence, but in this case it is a relief given the pessimistic prospect that A Farewell to Alms holds out for the future of the world.

    Clark relies too much on anecdotal evidence by making dubious conclusions regarding his personal observation that Indian cotton mills employ large numbers of workers based on kinship as evidence of the allegedly poor quality of Indian labor, without situating that kind of employment practices on its particularistic Indian social-cultural environment.

    • Agree: Vishnugupta
    • Replies: @China Japan and Korea Bromance of Three Kingdoms
    @antibeast


    The Qing Dynasty capitulated too quickly during the Opium Wars which is why the Han Chinese rebelled against the Manchu rulers. My view is that the Western Powers bribed the Manchu rulers which explains why the British and French ended up defending the Qing Dynasty during the Taiping Rebellion.

     

    There are other reasons for the Taipings. Hong failed the imperial exams multiple times. The Hakka/Cantos/Zhuang from coastal South were the most anti-Manchu. While the Xiang Army from Hunan represented Neo-Confucian orthodoxy.

    Also the Euros viewed Hong as a Christian heretic.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taiping_Rebellion#Origins

    Meanwhile, the population of China had increased rapidly, nearly doubling between 1766 and 1833, while the amount of cultivated land was stable.
     
    Malthusian pressure I think is another one. Throughout Ming and Qing times GDP per capita must have been pretty static, while population keep getting bloated.

    Replies: @antibeast

  37. 128 says:

    You will look at GDP per hour worked if you care about the quality of life of your workers? Americans work a lot longer than Europeans, maybe 50 times as much? Sure they earn money, but if there was more social choice in their culture to work less, maybe they will prefer more leisure even if it means less earnings?

  38. Russia’s rapid economic growth during the 25 years prior to WWI was remarked on by most astute observers at the time. The German general staff supposedly had done a report around 1910 claiming that if Russia kept growing at current rates, by 1920 Germany would be unable to challenge her militarily or economically. This is supposedly one reason the German generals were anxious to find an excuse for war in 1914.

    • Replies: @4Dchessmaster
    @Peter Akuleyev

    I also wonder what Russia's population would be if the Russian Civil War, Famines, and WW2 had not happened. Also if Russia's fertility rate had continued to be at 19th century levels with rapid population growth.

    Replies: @AP, @ivan, @rkka, @China Japan and Korea Bromance of Three Kingdoms

    , @John Burns, Gettysburg Partisan
    @Peter Akuleyev

    Emphasis on "supposedly" since it was unarguably the Franco-British and Russians who pushed hardest of all for that war.

    [1] 'The Genesis of the World War: An Introduction to the Problem of War Guilt' [1926] by Harry Elmer Barnes
    [2] 'The Russian Origins of the First World War' [2011] by Sean McMeekin

    Replies: @Peter Akuleyev

  39. @Peter Akuleyev
    Russia's rapid economic growth during the 25 years prior to WWI was remarked on by most astute observers at the time. The German general staff supposedly had done a report around 1910 claiming that if Russia kept growing at current rates, by 1920 Germany would be unable to challenge her militarily or economically. This is supposedly one reason the German generals were anxious to find an excuse for war in 1914.

    Replies: @4Dchessmaster, @John Burns, Gettysburg Partisan

    I also wonder what Russia’s population would be if the Russian Civil War, Famines, and WW2 had not happened. Also if Russia’s fertility rate had continued to be at 19th century levels with rapid population growth.

    • Replies: @AP
    @4Dchessmaster


    I also wonder what Russia’s population would be if the Russian Civil War, Famines, and WW2 had not happened.
     
    At least 250 million. Ukraine would have another 80 million or so.

    Also if Russia’s fertility rate had continued to be at 19th century levels with rapid population growth.
     
    It wouldn't have continued at that high rate all this time, though it would have been higher than under the Communists.

    Replies: @Dmitry

    , @ivan
    @4Dchessmaster

    Communism not only destroyed the Russians physically, but also in the Soviet Union the number of abortions was said to be the highest in the world. Communism : the gift that keeps giving

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abortion_in_Russia

    , @rkka
    @4Dchessmaster

    "I also wonder what Russia’s population would be if the Russian Civil War, Famines, and WW2 had not happened."

    You need to include WWI, the disaster from which all of that followed.

    In February 1914, former Interior Minister Durnovo wrote a memo to Nicky II, laying out Imperial Russia's manafest unpreparedness for war with Imperial Germany, lacking adequate armament, dependence on industrial imports which would be cut off in a war with Germany, inadequate rail capacity, and social stability.

    He predicted defeat and socialist revolution. And even victory would be no better for Russia.

    https://pages.uoregon.edu/kimball/durnovo.htm

    Here's some commentary on it, appropriately titled "Hell is Truth Realized Too Late"

    https://lawliberty.org/hell-is-truth-realized-too-late-russia-and-world-war-i/

    Nicky II signed his death warrant, and that of his empire, when he decided to get into WWI.

    Replies: @4Dchessmaster

    , @China Japan and Korea Bromance of Three Kingdoms
    @4Dchessmaster

    I wonder this as well. China's population loss 1937-1949 is comparable to Russia's (but smaller in percentage terms).

    In Mao period had additional population loss events. But ended up still near tripling population post 1949.

    Obvious early PRC was very pro-natal, and population was much more rural compared to USSR.

  40. AP says:
    @4Dchessmaster
    @Peter Akuleyev

    I also wonder what Russia's population would be if the Russian Civil War, Famines, and WW2 had not happened. Also if Russia's fertility rate had continued to be at 19th century levels with rapid population growth.

    Replies: @AP, @ivan, @rkka, @China Japan and Korea Bromance of Three Kingdoms

    I also wonder what Russia’s population would be if the Russian Civil War, Famines, and WW2 had not happened.

    At least 250 million. Ukraine would have another 80 million or so.

    Also if Russia’s fertility rate had continued to be at 19th century levels with rapid population growth.

    It wouldn’t have continued at that high rate all this time, though it would have been higher than under the Communists.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    @AP

    No if the economy was successful earlier than it was with the Soviet economic policy, then the present population would have been smaller (unless you are imagining some alternative future without a Second World War), as there would be less time between leaving the Malthusian trap and the demographic transition. The reason the population in Russia is higher than other European countries like Germany or France, is the relative lateness of the economic development in the Russian Empire. Demographic transition in Russian Empire is beginning in the 1880s-1890s, due to relatively later industrialization and urbanization.

    While China, there was the far more disastrous19th century and 20th century than in Russia, as a result the demographic transition was delayed until the population was climbing to a billion. And India will bypass China’s population around end of this decade, as there is a later demographic transition.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zqHZRwVU_0E

    Replies: @AP, @Rattus Norwegius

  41. @Some Guy
    @Marshal Marlow

    Pretty sure he's talking about Stalin taking weeks to react to the invasion, causing millions of soviet soldiers to be sitting ducks, plus the purge of experienced officers. Stalin took a more hands-off approach later in the war I believe.

    With regards to industrial productivity, let's not forget that if a smaller part of the population is urbanized, then it's probably also a more elite part of the population. The smart fraction guys with interest in science, engineering and business born in the countryside were probably already in the cities, contributing to the high productivity.

    Another thing to consider is how big Russia's Ashkenazi population would be in a different timeline(biggest in the world?), and how that would affect productivity over time.

    Replies: @rkka

    “Pretty sure he’s talking about Stalin taking weeks to react to the invasion, causing millions of soviet soldiers to be sitting ducks, plus the purge of experienced officers. Stalin took a more hands-off approach later in the war I believe.”

    In 6 weeks in 1940, the German army destroyed or put to headlong flight Western allied armies numbering about 3 million, at the cost of 27k German troops killed.

    In the first 7 weeks after 22 June 1941, the German Army destroyed Russian armies numbering about 3 million, at a cost of 83k German troops killed, plus thousands more Finnish, Italian, Hungarian, Romanian, and Slovak troops. (390k total German casualties).

  42. @4Dchessmaster
    @Peter Akuleyev

    I also wonder what Russia's population would be if the Russian Civil War, Famines, and WW2 had not happened. Also if Russia's fertility rate had continued to be at 19th century levels with rapid population growth.

    Replies: @AP, @ivan, @rkka, @China Japan and Korea Bromance of Three Kingdoms

    Communism not only destroyed the Russians physically, but also in the Soviet Union the number of abortions was said to be the highest in the world. Communism : the gift that keeps giving

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abortion_in_Russia

  43. @4Dchessmaster
    @Peter Akuleyev

    I also wonder what Russia's population would be if the Russian Civil War, Famines, and WW2 had not happened. Also if Russia's fertility rate had continued to be at 19th century levels with rapid population growth.

    Replies: @AP, @ivan, @rkka, @China Japan and Korea Bromance of Three Kingdoms

    “I also wonder what Russia’s population would be if the Russian Civil War, Famines, and WW2 had not happened.”

    You need to include WWI, the disaster from which all of that followed.

    In February 1914, former Interior Minister Durnovo wrote a memo to Nicky II, laying out Imperial Russia’s manafest unpreparedness for war with Imperial Germany, lacking adequate armament, dependence on industrial imports which would be cut off in a war with Germany, inadequate rail capacity, and social stability.

    He predicted defeat and socialist revolution. And even victory would be no better for Russia.

    https://pages.uoregon.edu/kimball/durnovo.htm

    Here’s some commentary on it, appropriately titled “Hell is Truth Realized Too Late”

    https://lawliberty.org/hell-is-truth-realized-too-late-russia-and-world-war-i/

    Nicky II signed his death warrant, and that of his empire, when he decided to get into WWI.

    • Replies: @4Dchessmaster
    @rkka

    I agree that too much blame is put on the Bolsheviks. While their ruthlessness was a factor in the catastrophic civil war, the other powers interfering and Germany's aggression is more to blame.

  44. @songbird
    How does modern Russian cultural production rank when compared to US in the '30s and '40s? Or modern Japan and SK, and why?

    US pop in 1940 was 132 million, including blacks. Current Russian pop is 146.6 million, compared to Jap 126 million and SK 51 million.

    Does piracy prevent Russia from being a bigger player, or is it other factors?

    Replies: @AlexanderGrozny

    “Including Blacks”?

    Why is that relevant? An American is an American, regardless of Melanin.

  45. @AP
    @YetAnotherAnon


    An interesting question – given what we know now, better to be raising a family in 1900 Argentina or 1900 Italy? You’d be poorer in Argentina, but your kids/grandkids wouldn’t have been sent to Caporetto or the Russian front – the Falklands or Belgrano at worst.
     
    You'd be more likely to have great-grandkids in Argentina - compare the two countries' fertility rates.

    Replies: @AlexanderGrozny

    The rate of childless in Italy is actually very similar to Argentina, it is just that Argentinians are much more likely to have 3+ children.

    • Thanks: AP
    • Replies: @Philip Owen
    @AlexanderGrozny

    Indios?

  46. @AlexanderGrozny
    @AP

    The rate of childless in Italy is actually very similar to Argentina, it is just that Argentinians are much more likely to have 3+ children.

    Replies: @Philip Owen

    Indios?

  47. @rkka
    @4Dchessmaster

    "I also wonder what Russia’s population would be if the Russian Civil War, Famines, and WW2 had not happened."

    You need to include WWI, the disaster from which all of that followed.

    In February 1914, former Interior Minister Durnovo wrote a memo to Nicky II, laying out Imperial Russia's manafest unpreparedness for war with Imperial Germany, lacking adequate armament, dependence on industrial imports which would be cut off in a war with Germany, inadequate rail capacity, and social stability.

    He predicted defeat and socialist revolution. And even victory would be no better for Russia.

    https://pages.uoregon.edu/kimball/durnovo.htm

    Here's some commentary on it, appropriately titled "Hell is Truth Realized Too Late"

    https://lawliberty.org/hell-is-truth-realized-too-late-russia-and-world-war-i/

    Nicky II signed his death warrant, and that of his empire, when he decided to get into WWI.

    Replies: @4Dchessmaster

    I agree that too much blame is put on the Bolsheviks. While their ruthlessness was a factor in the catastrophic civil war, the other powers interfering and Germany’s aggression is more to blame.

  48. @AP
    @4Dchessmaster


    I also wonder what Russia’s population would be if the Russian Civil War, Famines, and WW2 had not happened.
     
    At least 250 million. Ukraine would have another 80 million or so.

    Also if Russia’s fertility rate had continued to be at 19th century levels with rapid population growth.
     
    It wouldn't have continued at that high rate all this time, though it would have been higher than under the Communists.

    Replies: @Dmitry

    No if the economy was successful earlier than it was with the Soviet economic policy, then the present population would have been smaller (unless you are imagining some alternative future without a Second World War), as there would be less time between leaving the Malthusian trap and the demographic transition. The reason the population in Russia is higher than other European countries like Germany or France, is the relative lateness of the economic development in the Russian Empire. Demographic transition in Russian Empire is beginning in the 1880s-1890s, due to relatively later industrialization and urbanization.

    While China, there was the far more disastrous19th century and 20th century than in Russia, as a result the demographic transition was delayed until the population was climbing to a billion. And India will bypass China’s population around end of this decade, as there is a later demographic transition.

    • Replies: @AP
    @Dmitry


    No if the economy was successful earlier than it was with the Soviet economic policy, then the present population would have been smaller (unless you are imagining some alternative future without a Second World War), as there would be less time between leaving the Malthusian trap and the demographic transition. The reason the population in Russia is higher than other European countries like Germany or France, is the relative lateness of the economic development in the Russian Empire. Demographic transition in Russian Empire is beginning in the 1880s-1890s, due to relatively later industrialization and urbanization.
     
    You forgot the massive demographic losses to artificial famines under the Soviets.

    Also, while economic development matters, it is not everything. Relatively conservative Germany had a higher fertility rate than France despite being more economically developed. Germany had a TFR of 5 in 1900; France had one of only 2.89.

    France's collapse coincided with the Revolution, not with development.

    Replies: @Dmitry

    , @Rattus Norwegius
    @Dmitry

    Russia had a higher birthrate than Poland prior to WW2, if the Russian revolution was averted or failed, then that would be the case afterwards too. It would also be the case if the Soviet Union avoided WW2 or performed better.

  49. “(These would be results broadly congruent with what one might predict from average IQs under free market conditions)”

    Whatever the heck that means.

  50. @Peter Akuleyev
    Russia's rapid economic growth during the 25 years prior to WWI was remarked on by most astute observers at the time. The German general staff supposedly had done a report around 1910 claiming that if Russia kept growing at current rates, by 1920 Germany would be unable to challenge her militarily or economically. This is supposedly one reason the German generals were anxious to find an excuse for war in 1914.

    Replies: @4Dchessmaster, @John Burns, Gettysburg Partisan

    Emphasis on “supposedly” since it was unarguably the Franco-British and Russians who pushed hardest of all for that war.

    [1] ‘The Genesis of the World War: An Introduction to the Problem of War Guilt’ [1926] by Harry Elmer Barnes
    [2] ‘The Russian Origins of the First World War’ [2011] by Sean McMeekin

    • Replies: @Peter Akuleyev
    @John Burns, Gettysburg Partisan

    The Austrians pushed hardest for the war, very shortsightedly, as they imagined they would roll over Serbia in a few weeks and then negotiate a peace with Russia from a position of strength. War over. The Germans were reluctant at first but then got sucked in. The British did not push at all at first. France wanted war with Germany for the same reason Germany wanted war with Russia - longer we wait, worse it will get. Russia felt had it a duty to mess around in the Balkans that actually made no real sense.

    Still, Austrian war guilt is probably the most obvious. It is interesting how many Western historians ignore Austria or treat it as a puppet of Germany. If you grew up reading histories like "Guns of August" Austria is almost invisible. But that approach makes it easier to portray Germany as the initiator.

    Replies: @AP, @Philip Owen

  51. @4Dchessmaster
    As far as WW2 goes, I don't think that mismanagement was necessarily the problem.

    We have to remember that Germany's economy, military, and determination was formidable. It had a population of about 70 million when WW2 broke out.

    Add to that, the UK, USA, and other allies were not willing to open a second front until 1944, by then the war in Europe was on its way to being concluded.

    In short, when you are a country(Germany) that has allies(Italy, Romania, Finland, etc.) that number 3.8 million on June 22, 1941, and enter a country with such resentment for its citizens and a will to enslave its people based on a bizarre racial hierarchy system, you are going to leave behind a huge mess.

    Had the Soviet Union only lost 5 million people in WW2, and had Stalingrad never been touched, in addition to many small towns and villages, the USSR would have fared better.

    Still though, to rival a country like the USA throughout the Cold War after that kind of devastation is nothing less than impressive.

    Replies: @Philip Owen, @Marshal Marlow, @John Burns, Gettysburg Partisan

    I can see you are well and truly imbued with the usual Anglo-American liberal machine history.

    Notably, the minimization of the scope of Anglo-American Soviet support to the Soviet regime. Putting aside the fact that Operations Torch and Husky – plus the Battle of the Atlantic, plus the period of German defensive preparations for Overlord – were by no means small affairs, and soaked up large portions of Germany’s limited resources, the best any stooge inspired by Soviet myth can do with regards to Lend-Lease is claim that it didn’t make up the decisive edge and that the USSR could have won without it. But even if that were true (LOL), it doesn’t change the error of your ways.

    When you say, “The war in Europe was well on its way to being concluded” before Overlord, that totally evades the question of whether or not the USSR could have defeated Germany without all of the Allied support before the summer of 1944.

    And then the usual nonsense about Germany’s uniquely evil plans for racial enslavement, blah blah. I know no one here wants to read ‘Stalin’s War of Extermination’ (Hoffmann), but that repeated cliche earns the “blah blah” descriptor I give it.

    As an American, I can tell you that Americans do tend to minimize the Soviet influence on the war.

    The difference is that, unlike most Americans, I agree with General Patton that we had no business ever allying with them; our government was, rather obviously, filled with their spies, who were too busy Keelhauling those Slavs to a far worse fate than the mythical monster Germany ever actually had in mind for them.

    Patton was there on the spot, and he independently reached the same conclusion as contemporary and future honest American historians like Barnes, Beard, Chamberlain, Fleming, et al. Once any present American has made this mental realization, all of the nonsense about the Soviet Union’s war effort disappears. Mismanagement? Let me ask you something: why did Stalin avoid the victory parade in Berlin? It wasn’t just because of frequent bouts of mismanagement – like, say, Operation Mars, where the golden boy himself, Zhukov, lost nearly half a million soldiers (apparently just a drop in the bucket to the Soviet-Mongol Empire). It was because Stalin had wanted a whole lot more than Berlin.

    • Replies: @4Dchessmaster
    @John Burns, Gettysburg Partisan

    Wow, your comment is incredibly incoherent and bizarre.

    First of all, the Soviet Union had its own industrial base, a large amount of manpower, and an army that had experience fighting against the Japanese at Khalkin Gol. The idea that the Soviets were not capable of waging war is another silly Anglo myth.

    Second of all, you would never have had to ally with the Soviets if Wall Street had not helped Germany rebuild its economy and army in the 1930s. People like Charles Lindbergh and that scumbag Lothrop Stoddard endlessly praised Germany when it deserved nothing but criticism.

    As far as Patton goes, he was a good general but a crazy man. Slapping your troops, begging for more war, and acting like "we fought the wrong enemy" is a sign of a seriously deranged mind. He was the perfect example of the annoying and mindless anti-communist and anti-Slavic demagogue endemic to the Western world. He even believed that PTSD was an invention of the Jews, LOL.

    The British and Americans would have had to face a mountain pile of casualties if they had to go toe to toe with the Germans like the USSR did. Yet the English were too busy making excuses, which is a typical trait of the Eternal Anglo.

    Replies: @Philip Owen

    , @but an humble craftsman
    @John Burns, Gettysburg Partisan

    Thank you, sir.

    It is instructive to look at the fate of those Russian POW who survived the horrid conditions in German camps.

  52. @Mr. XYZ

    Logically, it follows that if Russia was to urbanize those remaining peasants, drawing them into the urban high-productivity industries, you’d have had GDP/capita convergence with the “advanced economies”; perhaps not quite at German levels, but certainly France would seem to be within reason – and possibly ahead of Italy. (These would be results broadly congruent with what one might predict from average IQs under free market conditions).
     
    This might actually be too pessimistic since Russia also has A LOT OF natural resources, which could have in turn increased its GDP PPP per capita even further than that.

    Replies: @Philip Owen

    Imperial Russia was very poor at urbanization. Industrialisation and export orientated agriculture (at least the food processing side) were relatively successful once railways, canals and ports had been built. No provision was made to accomodate the workers compared to British industrialists who often built large housing estates for their workers (tied housing only made illegal in the 1960’s). Imperial Russia made no special provision for industrial workers. Skilled men had conspicuously less access to living space than in the UK or even Germany.

  53. @John Burns, Gettysburg Partisan
    @4Dchessmaster

    I can see you are well and truly imbued with the usual Anglo-American liberal machine history.

    Notably, the minimization of the scope of Anglo-American Soviet support to the Soviet regime. Putting aside the fact that Operations Torch and Husky - plus the Battle of the Atlantic, plus the period of German defensive preparations for Overlord - were by no means small affairs, and soaked up large portions of Germany's limited resources, the best any stooge inspired by Soviet myth can do with regards to Lend-Lease is claim that it didn't make up the decisive edge and that the USSR could have won without it. But even if that were true (LOL), it doesn't change the error of your ways.

    When you say, "The war in Europe was well on its way to being concluded" before Overlord, that totally evades the question of whether or not the USSR could have defeated Germany without all of the Allied support before the summer of 1944.

    And then the usual nonsense about Germany's uniquely evil plans for racial enslavement, blah blah. I know no one here wants to read 'Stalin's War of Extermination' (Hoffmann), but that repeated cliche earns the "blah blah" descriptor I give it.

    As an American, I can tell you that Americans do tend to minimize the Soviet influence on the war.

    The difference is that, unlike most Americans, I agree with General Patton that we had no business ever allying with them; our government was, rather obviously, filled with their spies, who were too busy Keelhauling those Slavs to a far worse fate than the mythical monster Germany ever actually had in mind for them.

    Patton was there on the spot, and he independently reached the same conclusion as contemporary and future honest American historians like Barnes, Beard, Chamberlain, Fleming, et al. Once any present American has made this mental realization, all of the nonsense about the Soviet Union's war effort disappears. Mismanagement? Let me ask you something: why did Stalin avoid the victory parade in Berlin? It wasn't just because of frequent bouts of mismanagement - like, say, Operation Mars, where the golden boy himself, Zhukov, lost nearly half a million soldiers (apparently just a drop in the bucket to the Soviet-Mongol Empire). It was because Stalin had wanted a whole lot more than Berlin.

    Replies: @4Dchessmaster, @but an humble craftsman

    Wow, your comment is incredibly incoherent and bizarre.

    First of all, the Soviet Union had its own industrial base, a large amount of manpower, and an army that had experience fighting against the Japanese at Khalkin Gol. The idea that the Soviets were not capable of waging war is another silly Anglo myth.

    Second of all, you would never have had to ally with the Soviets if Wall Street had not helped Germany rebuild its economy and army in the 1930s. People like Charles Lindbergh and that scumbag Lothrop Stoddard endlessly praised Germany when it deserved nothing but criticism.

    As far as Patton goes, he was a good general but a crazy man. Slapping your troops, begging for more war, and acting like “we fought the wrong enemy” is a sign of a seriously deranged mind. He was the perfect example of the annoying and mindless anti-communist and anti-Slavic demagogue endemic to the Western world. He even believed that PTSD was an invention of the Jews, LOL.

    The British and Americans would have had to face a mountain pile of casualties if they had to go toe to toe with the Germans like the USSR did. Yet the English were too busy making excuses, which is a typical trait of the Eternal Anglo.

    • Replies: @Philip Owen
    @4Dchessmaster

    Finland.

    Replies: @4Dchessmaster

  54. @antibeast
    @Wency

    Qing China was too sturdy and cohesive to annex, but its armies were never much of a factor in the Europeans’ decisions to have their way with it.


     

    Not true at all. The Taiping Rebellion which cost some 20 million lives pretty much convinced the Western Powers that colonizing China would not be possible, given the ferocity with which the Han Chinese rebels fought the Manchu rulers, aided by the British and French. The Western Powers were satisfied after the Manchus acceded to their demands for trading ports and economic concessions, which spurred anti-Manchu sentiment amongst the Han Chinese. The problem was not the inability of the Han Chinese to wage war but the unwillingness of the Manchu rulers to allow the establishment of a modern army equipped with modern weapons for fear of being deposed by the Han Chinese which is exactly what happened after the Beiyang Army that was formed in 1901, rebelled against the Qing in 1911.

    After the founding of the Republic of China, no Western Power ever waged war again against the Chinese Nationalist Army, forcing the British to ally with Japan in order to protect their commercial interests in China.

    So while the economic historians might say 18th-mid-19th century India or China weren’t much poorer, if at all, next to contemporary Russia, both places fielded militaries that were some orders of magnitude more dysfunctional than Romanov Russia in its darkest hours. I have to think there is a link somewhere in there to industrial productivity.


     

    Complete nonsense. The Qing Dynasty at its prime was the most militaristic period in Chinese history, having doubled Chinese territory by military conquests. The Spanish, Portuguese and the Dutch feared the Qing Dynasty and avoided any military engagement with China during the colonial period of Southeast Asia.

    As for industrial productivity, China is the world's largest manufacturing hub today, having surpassed the USA ten years ago, with its economy most likely to surpass the USA in less than ten years time, thereby reclaiming its status as the world's largest economy which it held for 2,000 of the last 2,200 years.

    Industrial productivity is correlated to physical infrastructure such as railroads, electricity, seaports, power plants and other economic assets while education, healthcare, welfare and culture is what drives labor productivity, both of which hardly existed during Qing China. After the founding of the Republic of China, Chinese industrial and labor productivity grew rapidly due to the establishment of the Chinese Nationalist educational system as well as a modern industrial Capitalist economic system, interrupted only by the Chinese Civil War and Second Sino-Japanese War.

    Replies: @China Japan and Korea Bromance of Three Kingdoms, @showmethereal

    The problem was not the inability of the Han Chinese to wage war but the unwillingness of the Manchu rulers to allow the establishment of a modern army equipped with modern weapons for fear of being deposed by the Han Chinese which is exactly what happened after the Beiyang Army that was formed in 1901, rebelled against the Qing in 1911.

    Beiyang Army descended from Zeng Guofan’s Xiang Army and Li Hongzhang’s Huai Army; who put down the Taipings.

    • Replies: @antibeast
    @China Japan and Korea Bromance of Three Kingdoms

    Beiyang Army descended from Zeng Guofan’s Xiang Army and Li Hongzhang’s Huai Army; who put down the Taipings.


     

    Yes but the Qing rulers started the military modernization too little late during the Late Qing period (1901-1911) after the failure of the 'self-strengthening' movement which began after the Opium Wars in 1860 and ended in China's defeat by Japan during the First Sino-Japanese War in 1895. Although the Qing armies performed well during the Sino-French War and the Dungan Revolt due to having imported modern weapons from Europe, they failed spectacularly in naval battles against the French and Japanese navies despite purchasing modern battleships from Europe. The French navy was able to destroy the Fuzhou Fleet during the Sino-French War without any reinforcement from the Beiyang Fleet which was later completely destroyed by the Japanese navy during the First Sino-Japanese War.

    The fundamental problem was the medieval mindset of the Qing rulers who refused to adopt modern military tactics and industrial organizations for fear that such a Han-dominated modern army might rebel against them. The Manchu fears became reality when the Beiyang Army, which was the first modern army created in 1905, rebelled against the Qing rulers after defecting to the Han revolutionaries in the Xinhai Revolution of 1911.

  55. AP says:
    @Dmitry
    @AP

    No if the economy was successful earlier than it was with the Soviet economic policy, then the present population would have been smaller (unless you are imagining some alternative future without a Second World War), as there would be less time between leaving the Malthusian trap and the demographic transition. The reason the population in Russia is higher than other European countries like Germany or France, is the relative lateness of the economic development in the Russian Empire. Demographic transition in Russian Empire is beginning in the 1880s-1890s, due to relatively later industrialization and urbanization.

    While China, there was the far more disastrous19th century and 20th century than in Russia, as a result the demographic transition was delayed until the population was climbing to a billion. And India will bypass China’s population around end of this decade, as there is a later demographic transition.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zqHZRwVU_0E

    Replies: @AP, @Rattus Norwegius

    No if the economy was successful earlier than it was with the Soviet economic policy, then the present population would have been smaller (unless you are imagining some alternative future without a Second World War), as there would be less time between leaving the Malthusian trap and the demographic transition. The reason the population in Russia is higher than other European countries like Germany or France, is the relative lateness of the economic development in the Russian Empire. Demographic transition in Russian Empire is beginning in the 1880s-1890s, due to relatively later industrialization and urbanization.

    You forgot the massive demographic losses to artificial famines under the Soviets.

    Also, while economic development matters, it is not everything. Relatively conservative Germany had a higher fertility rate than France despite being more economically developed. Germany had a TFR of 5 in 1900; France had one of only 2.89.

    France’s collapse coincided with the Revolution, not with development.

    • Agree: Philip Owen
    • Replies: @Dmitry
    @AP

    The situation with France's early demographic transition is probably a large and mysterious topic. But it has industrialized earlier than Germany.

    Germany has gone fast into the demographic transition as the country industrialized and urbanized.
    In 1860, the majority of Germany's population was still working in agriculture sector (less than 30% in industry). By end of the century, Germany urbanization is already bypassing France.

    https://i.imgur.com/e7JHMIS.jpg


    https://i.imgur.com/YQflBu4.png


    losses to artificial famines under the Soviets.
     
    This was partly because of the government's terrible incompetence, partly aspects of Malthusian trap in those regions.

    Replies: @AP

  56. @China Japan and Korea Bromance of Three Kingdoms
    @antibeast


    The problem was not the inability of the Han Chinese to wage war but the unwillingness of the Manchu rulers to allow the establishment of a modern army equipped with modern weapons for fear of being deposed by the Han Chinese which is exactly what happened after the Beiyang Army that was formed in 1901, rebelled against the Qing in 1911.
     
    Beiyang Army descended from Zeng Guofan's Xiang Army and Li Hongzhang's Huai Army; who put down the Taipings.

    Replies: @antibeast

    Beiyang Army descended from Zeng Guofan’s Xiang Army and Li Hongzhang’s Huai Army; who put down the Taipings.

    Yes but the Qing rulers started the military modernization too little late during the Late Qing period (1901-1911) after the failure of the ‘self-strengthening’ movement which began after the Opium Wars in 1860 and ended in China’s defeat by Japan during the First Sino-Japanese War in 1895. Although the Qing armies performed well during the Sino-French War and the Dungan Revolt due to having imported modern weapons from Europe, they failed spectacularly in naval battles against the French and Japanese navies despite purchasing modern battleships from Europe. The French navy was able to destroy the Fuzhou Fleet during the Sino-French War without any reinforcement from the Beiyang Fleet which was later completely destroyed by the Japanese navy during the First Sino-Japanese War.

    The fundamental problem was the medieval mindset of the Qing rulers who refused to adopt modern military tactics and industrial organizations for fear that such a Han-dominated modern army might rebel against them. The Manchu fears became reality when the Beiyang Army, which was the first modern army created in 1905, rebelled against the Qing rulers after defecting to the Han revolutionaries in the Xinhai Revolution of 1911.

  57. @John Burns, Gettysburg Partisan
    @Peter Akuleyev

    Emphasis on "supposedly" since it was unarguably the Franco-British and Russians who pushed hardest of all for that war.

    [1] 'The Genesis of the World War: An Introduction to the Problem of War Guilt' [1926] by Harry Elmer Barnes
    [2] 'The Russian Origins of the First World War' [2011] by Sean McMeekin

    Replies: @Peter Akuleyev

    The Austrians pushed hardest for the war, very shortsightedly, as they imagined they would roll over Serbia in a few weeks and then negotiate a peace with Russia from a position of strength. War over. The Germans were reluctant at first but then got sucked in. The British did not push at all at first. France wanted war with Germany for the same reason Germany wanted war with Russia – longer we wait, worse it will get. Russia felt had it a duty to mess around in the Balkans that actually made no real sense.

    Still, Austrian war guilt is probably the most obvious. It is interesting how many Western historians ignore Austria or treat it as a puppet of Germany. If you grew up reading histories like “Guns of August” Austria is almost invisible. But that approach makes it easier to portray Germany as the initiator.

    • Replies: @AP
    @Peter Akuleyev

    Austria’s cause was the most legitimate one, however: terrorists with links to the Serbian government, armed by them, crossed into A-H and murdered the heir to the throne and his wife.

    In hindsight, given the consequences, it was obviously a disastrous move by Austria (as it was for Russia and Germany) but it was justified.

    , @Philip Owen
    @Peter Akuleyev

    France was committed by a treaty with Russia to fight Germany. The Tsar pulled them in. The British stayed out until Belgium was invaded. They had a treaty commitment to defend Belgium. The NATO treaty is written to avoid all this.

  58. @antibeast
    @Wency



    I’m largely judging the Qing by their performance in the Opium Wars, which were basically contemporaneous with the Crimean War. Perhaps that’s not entirely fair, but it’s still illustrative of something.

     

    The Qing Dynasty capitulated too quickly during the Opium Wars which is why the Han Chinese rebelled against the Manchu rulers. My view is that the Western Powers bribed the Manchu rulers which explains why the British and French ended up defending the Qing Dynasty during the Taiping Rebellion.

    A more accurate comparison of the relative performance of the Qing Armies and the Western Powers is the Sino-French War of 1884-1885, as described in Wikipedia:


    The Sino-French War also known as the Tonkin War was a limited conflict fought from August 1884 through April 1885. There was no declaration of war. Militarily it was a stalemate. The Chinese armies performed better than in other nineteenth-century wars and the war ended with French retreat on land. However, one consequence was that France supplanted China's control of Tonkin (northern Vietnam). The war strengthened the dominance of Empress Dowager Cixi over the Chinese government, but brought down the government of Prime Minister Jules Ferry in Paris. Both sides were satisfied with the Treaty of Tientsin. According to Lloyd Eastman, "neither nation reaped diplomatic gains."

     

    The Qing Armies defeated the French Army in land battles but lost the sea battles to the French Navy. The war ended in a military stalemate with concessions made by both sides and neither paying either side any indemnity. Politically, the war strengthened the Qing Dynasty but weakened the French government of Jules Ferry which collapsed almost immediately when news of the military outcome reached Paris.


    The sorts of observations about labor productivity that Gregory Clark was making about India don’t have much to do with things like infrastructure or healthcare. I don’t think they even necessarily have much to do with education — in both cases, in the early stages of industrialization you’re pulling essentially unlettered peasants from the countryside to work in factories, and these are ground-level observations about needing multiple uneducated Indians to do the work of a single uneducated European.

     

    This article refutes many of the dubious conclusions made by Gregory Clark regarding the disparity in economic outcomes between the West and non-West such as India:

    http://faculty.econ.ucdavis.edu/faculty/gclark/Farewell%20to%20Alms/Allen_JEL_Review.pdf


    To advance, we need to pay more attention to institutions and to culture. Clark’s description of the cotton mills shows that it is not laziness or incapacity that led to the proliferation of jobs but rather a set of deals between workers, members of their families and the communities from which they came, the owners and managers of the mills, and even the government whose investigations provide so much of the material to make Clark’s case. By analyzing their interests and opportunities, we might understand the staffing patterns observed by Clark.

    A Farewell to Alms is readable because it offers sweeping answers based upon parsimonious theory to complex questions about long run economic growth. Clark’s answers resonate with today’s headlines, for he has written an economic history of the world that is the counterpart to the “clash of civilizations.” Indeed, his biological arguments for the superiority of Anglo–American culture make the differences between the West and the Rest unbridgeable and a source of perpetual conflict. Normally, it is distressing to find that the central theses of a book are contradicted by well known evidence, but in this case it is a relief given the pessimistic prospect that A Farewell to Alms holds out for the future of the world.

     

    Clark relies too much on anecdotal evidence by making dubious conclusions regarding his personal observation that Indian cotton mills employ large numbers of workers based on kinship as evidence of the allegedly poor quality of Indian labor, without situating that kind of employment practices on its particularistic Indian social-cultural environment.

    Replies: @China Japan and Korea Bromance of Three Kingdoms

    The Qing Dynasty capitulated too quickly during the Opium Wars which is why the Han Chinese rebelled against the Manchu rulers. My view is that the Western Powers bribed the Manchu rulers which explains why the British and French ended up defending the Qing Dynasty during the Taiping Rebellion.

    There are other reasons for the Taipings. Hong failed the imperial exams multiple times. The Hakka/Cantos/Zhuang from coastal South were the most anti-Manchu. While the Xiang Army from Hunan represented Neo-Confucian orthodoxy.

    Also the Euros viewed Hong as a Christian heretic.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taiping_Rebellion#Origins

    Meanwhile, the population of China had increased rapidly, nearly doubling between 1766 and 1833, while the amount of cultivated land was stable.

    Malthusian pressure I think is another one. Throughout Ming and Qing times GDP per capita must have been pretty static, while population keep getting bloated.

    • Replies: @antibeast
    @China Japan and Korea Bromance of Three Kingdoms

    Malthusian pressure I think is another one. Throughout Ming and Qing times GDP per capita must have been pretty static, while population keep getting bloated.


     

    Not really as the Qing Dynasty doubled China's territory by military conquests during the 17th and 18th centuries when China's population also doubled which eased the Malthusian pressure on land constraints. Also, China's foreign trade via the Spanish Galleons brought in Mexican silver which led to the economic boom during those two prosperous centuries. But the inflow of Mexican silver abruptly declined due to the end of the Spanish Galleon Trade (1565–1815) at the same time that the British East India Company thought of ways to export Indian opium to China which increased the outflow of Chinese silver. The end result was price deflation which spiraled into the Daoguang Depression (1820-1850). The First Opium War was hardly a disaster in material or physical terms as it cost 'only' 20,000 lives but it nevertheless triggered the Taiping Rebellion (1850-1864) which culminated in the joint British and French intervention to save the Qing Dynasty from the Han rebels. The farcical debacle of the Opium Wars exposed the incompetence, corruption, treachery and obscurantism of the Manchu rulers who opposed the Qing reformers until the late Qing period when full-scale modernization started in 1901.

    The Taiping Rebellion was truly disastrous to the Qing Dynasty as that Civil War cost some 20 million lives. Can you imagine the Manchu rulers asking the British and French to save their butts during the Taiping Rebellion while pretending to fight them during the Second Opium War which cost 'only' a few thousand lives? The Opium Wars were 'staged' events which allowed the Manchu rulers to partner with the Western Powers to profit from their trade with China in return for military protection. That's why the Manchu rulers opposed any attempt at 'modernizing' China as they feared the Han Chinese might rebel against them again following the Taiping Rebellion. Only after the Manchu rulers were deposed following the Xinhai Revolution did the Han Chinese started the modernization and industrialization of Republican China. After the founding of the Republic of China, China's rate of growth for industrial production surpassed that of British India, Tsarist Russia, USSR and Imperial Japan from its founding in 1911 to the start of the Second Sino-Japanese War in 1937. Were it not for the Japanese invasion, the Republic of China would have been on its way to becoming one of the world's leading industrial and military powers by the end of WWII.

  59. @4Dchessmaster
    @Peter Akuleyev

    I also wonder what Russia's population would be if the Russian Civil War, Famines, and WW2 had not happened. Also if Russia's fertility rate had continued to be at 19th century levels with rapid population growth.

    Replies: @AP, @ivan, @rkka, @China Japan and Korea Bromance of Three Kingdoms

    I wonder this as well. China’s population loss 1937-1949 is comparable to Russia’s (but smaller in percentage terms).

    In Mao period had additional population loss events. But ended up still near tripling population post 1949.

    Obvious early PRC was very pro-natal, and population was much more rural compared to USSR.

  60. @China Japan and Korea Bromance of Three Kingdoms
    @antibeast


    The Qing Dynasty capitulated too quickly during the Opium Wars which is why the Han Chinese rebelled against the Manchu rulers. My view is that the Western Powers bribed the Manchu rulers which explains why the British and French ended up defending the Qing Dynasty during the Taiping Rebellion.

     

    There are other reasons for the Taipings. Hong failed the imperial exams multiple times. The Hakka/Cantos/Zhuang from coastal South were the most anti-Manchu. While the Xiang Army from Hunan represented Neo-Confucian orthodoxy.

    Also the Euros viewed Hong as a Christian heretic.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taiping_Rebellion#Origins

    Meanwhile, the population of China had increased rapidly, nearly doubling between 1766 and 1833, while the amount of cultivated land was stable.
     
    Malthusian pressure I think is another one. Throughout Ming and Qing times GDP per capita must have been pretty static, while population keep getting bloated.

    Replies: @antibeast

    Malthusian pressure I think is another one. Throughout Ming and Qing times GDP per capita must have been pretty static, while population keep getting bloated.

    Not really as the Qing Dynasty doubled China’s territory by military conquests during the 17th and 18th centuries when China’s population also doubled which eased the Malthusian pressure on land constraints. Also, China’s foreign trade via the Spanish Galleons brought in Mexican silver which led to the economic boom during those two prosperous centuries. But the inflow of Mexican silver abruptly declined due to the end of the Spanish Galleon Trade (1565–1815) at the same time that the British East India Company thought of ways to export Indian opium to China which increased the outflow of Chinese silver. The end result was price deflation which spiraled into the Daoguang Depression (1820-1850). The First Opium War was hardly a disaster in material or physical terms as it cost ‘only’ 20,000 lives but it nevertheless triggered the Taiping Rebellion (1850-1864) which culminated in the joint British and French intervention to save the Qing Dynasty from the Han rebels. The farcical debacle of the Opium Wars exposed the incompetence, corruption, treachery and obscurantism of the Manchu rulers who opposed the Qing reformers until the late Qing period when full-scale modernization started in 1901.

    The Taiping Rebellion was truly disastrous to the Qing Dynasty as that Civil War cost some 20 million lives. Can you imagine the Manchu rulers asking the British and French to save their butts during the Taiping Rebellion while pretending to fight them during the Second Opium War which cost ‘only’ a few thousand lives? The Opium Wars were ‘staged’ events which allowed the Manchu rulers to partner with the Western Powers to profit from their trade with China in return for military protection. That’s why the Manchu rulers opposed any attempt at ‘modernizing’ China as they feared the Han Chinese might rebel against them again following the Taiping Rebellion. Only after the Manchu rulers were deposed following the Xinhai Revolution did the Han Chinese started the modernization and industrialization of Republican China. After the founding of the Republic of China, China’s rate of growth for industrial production surpassed that of British India, Tsarist Russia, USSR and Imperial Japan from its founding in 1911 to the start of the Second Sino-Japanese War in 1937. Were it not for the Japanese invasion, the Republic of China would have been on its way to becoming one of the world’s leading industrial and military powers by the end of WWII.

  61. AP says:
    @Peter Akuleyev
    @John Burns, Gettysburg Partisan

    The Austrians pushed hardest for the war, very shortsightedly, as they imagined they would roll over Serbia in a few weeks and then negotiate a peace with Russia from a position of strength. War over. The Germans were reluctant at first but then got sucked in. The British did not push at all at first. France wanted war with Germany for the same reason Germany wanted war with Russia - longer we wait, worse it will get. Russia felt had it a duty to mess around in the Balkans that actually made no real sense.

    Still, Austrian war guilt is probably the most obvious. It is interesting how many Western historians ignore Austria or treat it as a puppet of Germany. If you grew up reading histories like "Guns of August" Austria is almost invisible. But that approach makes it easier to portray Germany as the initiator.

    Replies: @AP, @Philip Owen

    Austria’s cause was the most legitimate one, however: terrorists with links to the Serbian government, armed by them, crossed into A-H and murdered the heir to the throne and his wife.

    In hindsight, given the consequences, it was obviously a disastrous move by Austria (as it was for Russia and Germany) but it was justified.

  62. @AP
    @Dmitry


    No if the economy was successful earlier than it was with the Soviet economic policy, then the present population would have been smaller (unless you are imagining some alternative future without a Second World War), as there would be less time between leaving the Malthusian trap and the demographic transition. The reason the population in Russia is higher than other European countries like Germany or France, is the relative lateness of the economic development in the Russian Empire. Demographic transition in Russian Empire is beginning in the 1880s-1890s, due to relatively later industrialization and urbanization.
     
    You forgot the massive demographic losses to artificial famines under the Soviets.

    Also, while economic development matters, it is not everything. Relatively conservative Germany had a higher fertility rate than France despite being more economically developed. Germany had a TFR of 5 in 1900; France had one of only 2.89.

    France's collapse coincided with the Revolution, not with development.

    Replies: @Dmitry

    The situation with France’s early demographic transition is probably a large and mysterious topic. But it has industrialized earlier than Germany.

    Germany has gone fast into the demographic transition as the country industrialized and urbanized.
    In 1860, the majority of Germany’s population was still working in agriculture sector (less than 30% in industry). By end of the century, Germany urbanization is already bypassing France.

    losses to artificial famines under the Soviets.

    This was partly because of the government’s terrible incompetence, partly aspects of Malthusian trap in those regions.

    • Replies: @AP
    @Dmitry


    Germany has gone fast into the demographic transition as the country industrialized and urbanized.
     
    German TFR rates:

    https://i.imgur.com/Jdp3xPe.png

    Actually went up during industrialization, went down starting in 1905. Culprit is probably secularization.

    Same in Quebec - collapsed in the 1960s with Quebec's secular revolution.

    Secularization would have been inevitable in Russia (minus Revolution) eventually, probably, but would have occurred much more slowly and would not have matched industrialization. It would have followed the German model rather than the Revolutionary French model.

    Replies: @showmethereal

  63. @4Dchessmaster
    @John Burns, Gettysburg Partisan

    Wow, your comment is incredibly incoherent and bizarre.

    First of all, the Soviet Union had its own industrial base, a large amount of manpower, and an army that had experience fighting against the Japanese at Khalkin Gol. The idea that the Soviets were not capable of waging war is another silly Anglo myth.

    Second of all, you would never have had to ally with the Soviets if Wall Street had not helped Germany rebuild its economy and army in the 1930s. People like Charles Lindbergh and that scumbag Lothrop Stoddard endlessly praised Germany when it deserved nothing but criticism.

    As far as Patton goes, he was a good general but a crazy man. Slapping your troops, begging for more war, and acting like "we fought the wrong enemy" is a sign of a seriously deranged mind. He was the perfect example of the annoying and mindless anti-communist and anti-Slavic demagogue endemic to the Western world. He even believed that PTSD was an invention of the Jews, LOL.

    The British and Americans would have had to face a mountain pile of casualties if they had to go toe to toe with the Germans like the USSR did. Yet the English were too busy making excuses, which is a typical trait of the Eternal Anglo.

    Replies: @Philip Owen

    Finland.

    • Replies: @4Dchessmaster
    @Philip Owen

    What about them? The Finns are good fighters, but they still lost Karelia once it was all over.

    Replies: @Vishnugupta

  64. @Peter Akuleyev
    @John Burns, Gettysburg Partisan

    The Austrians pushed hardest for the war, very shortsightedly, as they imagined they would roll over Serbia in a few weeks and then negotiate a peace with Russia from a position of strength. War over. The Germans were reluctant at first but then got sucked in. The British did not push at all at first. France wanted war with Germany for the same reason Germany wanted war with Russia - longer we wait, worse it will get. Russia felt had it a duty to mess around in the Balkans that actually made no real sense.

    Still, Austrian war guilt is probably the most obvious. It is interesting how many Western historians ignore Austria or treat it as a puppet of Germany. If you grew up reading histories like "Guns of August" Austria is almost invisible. But that approach makes it easier to portray Germany as the initiator.

    Replies: @AP, @Philip Owen

    France was committed by a treaty with Russia to fight Germany. The Tsar pulled them in. The British stayed out until Belgium was invaded. They had a treaty commitment to defend Belgium. The NATO treaty is written to avoid all this.

  65. @Dmitry
    @AP

    The situation with France's early demographic transition is probably a large and mysterious topic. But it has industrialized earlier than Germany.

    Germany has gone fast into the demographic transition as the country industrialized and urbanized.
    In 1860, the majority of Germany's population was still working in agriculture sector (less than 30% in industry). By end of the century, Germany urbanization is already bypassing France.

    https://i.imgur.com/e7JHMIS.jpg


    https://i.imgur.com/YQflBu4.png


    losses to artificial famines under the Soviets.
     
    This was partly because of the government's terrible incompetence, partly aspects of Malthusian trap in those regions.

    Replies: @AP

    Germany has gone fast into the demographic transition as the country industrialized and urbanized.

    German TFR rates:

    Actually went up during industrialization, went down starting in 1905. Culprit is probably secularization.

    Same in Quebec – collapsed in the 1960s with Quebec’s secular revolution.

    Secularization would have been inevitable in Russia (minus Revolution) eventually, probably, but would have occurred much more slowly and would not have matched industrialization. It would have followed the German model rather than the Revolutionary French model.

    • Replies: @showmethereal
    @AP

    Is the cause of the uptick of fertility in Germany per that graph - a result of recent migration into Germany (migrants having more children)?

    Replies: @AP

  66. @Philip Owen
    @4Dchessmaster

    Finland.

    Replies: @4Dchessmaster

    What about them? The Finns are good fighters, but they still lost Karelia once it was all over.

    • Replies: @Vishnugupta
    @4Dchessmaster

    Yes at the cost of something like 1 million red army soldiers.Finland's entire population was around 3 million at this time.

    This was achieved despite the Finns having no air power during the Winter war or even armour anywhere near what the USSR had fielded.

    Many say the reason the Finns uniquely among small countries on the European border of the USSR got such an honorable settlement post WW2 was that the Red army estimated several million losses if they attempted to penetrate into the Finnish interior.

    Replies: @4Dchessmaster

  67. @4Dchessmaster
    @Philip Owen

    What about them? The Finns are good fighters, but they still lost Karelia once it was all over.

    Replies: @Vishnugupta

    Yes at the cost of something like 1 million red army soldiers.Finland’s entire population was around 3 million at this time.

    This was achieved despite the Finns having no air power during the Winter war or even armour anywhere near what the USSR had fielded.

    Many say the reason the Finns uniquely among small countries on the European border of the USSR got such an honorable settlement post WW2 was that the Red army estimated several million losses if they attempted to penetrate into the Finnish interior.

    • Replies: @4Dchessmaster
    @Vishnugupta

    The Red Army was weak in 1939-1940 for two reasons:

    1) It had recently undergone devastating purges.
    2) The industrialization had not yet been complete.

    As far as WW2, the Soviets had retaken all the land lost in the Barbarossa campaign and had already penetrated Finland's borders. It was hard, but it was done.

  68. @Vishnugupta
    @4Dchessmaster

    Yes at the cost of something like 1 million red army soldiers.Finland's entire population was around 3 million at this time.

    This was achieved despite the Finns having no air power during the Winter war or even armour anywhere near what the USSR had fielded.

    Many say the reason the Finns uniquely among small countries on the European border of the USSR got such an honorable settlement post WW2 was that the Red army estimated several million losses if they attempted to penetrate into the Finnish interior.

    Replies: @4Dchessmaster

    The Red Army was weak in 1939-1940 for two reasons:

    1) It had recently undergone devastating purges.
    2) The industrialization had not yet been complete.

    As far as WW2, the Soviets had retaken all the land lost in the Barbarossa campaign and had already penetrated Finland’s borders. It was hard, but it was done.

  69. @antibeast
    @Wency

    Qing China was too sturdy and cohesive to annex, but its armies were never much of a factor in the Europeans’ decisions to have their way with it.


     

    Not true at all. The Taiping Rebellion which cost some 20 million lives pretty much convinced the Western Powers that colonizing China would not be possible, given the ferocity with which the Han Chinese rebels fought the Manchu rulers, aided by the British and French. The Western Powers were satisfied after the Manchus acceded to their demands for trading ports and economic concessions, which spurred anti-Manchu sentiment amongst the Han Chinese. The problem was not the inability of the Han Chinese to wage war but the unwillingness of the Manchu rulers to allow the establishment of a modern army equipped with modern weapons for fear of being deposed by the Han Chinese which is exactly what happened after the Beiyang Army that was formed in 1901, rebelled against the Qing in 1911.

    After the founding of the Republic of China, no Western Power ever waged war again against the Chinese Nationalist Army, forcing the British to ally with Japan in order to protect their commercial interests in China.

    So while the economic historians might say 18th-mid-19th century India or China weren’t much poorer, if at all, next to contemporary Russia, both places fielded militaries that were some orders of magnitude more dysfunctional than Romanov Russia in its darkest hours. I have to think there is a link somewhere in there to industrial productivity.


     

    Complete nonsense. The Qing Dynasty at its prime was the most militaristic period in Chinese history, having doubled Chinese territory by military conquests. The Spanish, Portuguese and the Dutch feared the Qing Dynasty and avoided any military engagement with China during the colonial period of Southeast Asia.

    As for industrial productivity, China is the world's largest manufacturing hub today, having surpassed the USA ten years ago, with its economy most likely to surpass the USA in less than ten years time, thereby reclaiming its status as the world's largest economy which it held for 2,000 of the last 2,200 years.

    Industrial productivity is correlated to physical infrastructure such as railroads, electricity, seaports, power plants and other economic assets while education, healthcare, welfare and culture is what drives labor productivity, both of which hardly existed during Qing China. After the founding of the Republic of China, Chinese industrial and labor productivity grew rapidly due to the establishment of the Chinese Nationalist educational system as well as a modern industrial Capitalist economic system, interrupted only by the Chinese Civil War and Second Sino-Japanese War.

    Replies: @China Japan and Korea Bromance of Three Kingdoms, @showmethereal

    You are correct that the Manchu did not want to have a Han army… They indeed worked with the Mongols to keep the Han under both within China at the time. But toward the end of the Qing they were indeed willing to let the Hui Muslims fight. The foreigners were afraid of the way the Hui fought fiercely.

    As to the industrialization and productivity – I don’t know enough about Russian history to compare

  70. @AP
    @Dmitry


    Germany has gone fast into the demographic transition as the country industrialized and urbanized.
     
    German TFR rates:

    https://i.imgur.com/Jdp3xPe.png

    Actually went up during industrialization, went down starting in 1905. Culprit is probably secularization.

    Same in Quebec - collapsed in the 1960s with Quebec's secular revolution.

    Secularization would have been inevitable in Russia (minus Revolution) eventually, probably, but would have occurred much more slowly and would not have matched industrialization. It would have followed the German model rather than the Revolutionary French model.

    Replies: @showmethereal

    Is the cause of the uptick of fertility in Germany per that graph – a result of recent migration into Germany (migrants having more children)?

    • Replies: @AP
    @showmethereal

    I would assume so, but I don't know.

  71. You are correct that the Manchu did not want to have a Han army… They indeed worked with the Mongols to keep the Han under both within China at the time. But toward the end of the Qing they were indeed willing to let the Hui Muslims fight. The foreigners were afraid of the way the Hui fought fiercely.

    The Manchus used the ‘garrison’ system of posting Manchu ‘banners’ or militias to maintain their political power in Qing China, with support from the Mongols and Tibetans as their allies. The Tibetans promoted the court religion of Tibetan Buddhism while the Manchus and the Mongols dominated the Qing Manchu-Mongol Armies known as the ‘Eight Banners’ as well as the Qing Standard Armies consisting of Han and Hui soldiers. After the Opium Wars instigated the Taiping Rebellion, the Manchu rulers finally allowed the Hans to form the Xiang and later Huai Armies to fight the Taiping Rebels. The Xiang was later disbanded with its commanders appointed as viceroys and succeeded by the Huai and Chu Armies to put down the Dungan Revolt. The Beiyang Army then subsumed the Huai and Chu Armies to form the ‘New Armies’ of the late Qing period following the First Sino-Japanese War in 1895.

    Although the Manchus were able to import modern weapons from Europe to equip the Qing Armies, their medieval mindset prevent them from truly modernizing and industrializing China. The Qing Navy had the most battleships imported from Europe in all of Asia but still lost to the Japanese Navy during the First Sino-Japanese War. With the Hans now in control of the Beiyang Army which was the first modern army in China, the Hans finally succeeded in toppling the Qing Dynasty during the Xinhai Revolution in 1911. The Manchu decision to allow the Hans to form their own Xiang/Huai/Chu Armies which were later subsumed by the Beiyang Army doomed their fate as their ‘Eight Banners’ and Qing Standard Armies were hopelessly medieval to oppose the Beiyang Army of Yuan Shi-kai.

    • Agree: showmethereal
    • Replies: @antibeast
    @antibeast



    After the Opium Wars triggered the Taiping Rebellion, the Manchu rulers finally allowed the Hans to form the Xiang and later Huai Armies to fight the Taiping Rebels.

     

    Correction: 'triggered' not 'instigated' should be the right word.
    , @China Japan and Korea Bromance of Three Kingdoms
    @antibeast

    Hans were not a monolith:

    1. Northern Hans: not really anti-Manchu, but will chimp out for other reasons, i.e. Nian Rebels, Boxers
    2. Central Yangtze- e.g. Hunan, Huai: will belie anti-Manchuism if Qing upholds Neo-Confucian orthodoxy, high performers in imperial exams
    3. Deep South- Hakka/Canto: intensely anti-Manchu, lesser performers in exams

    Replies: @antibeast

  72. @antibeast


    You are correct that the Manchu did not want to have a Han army… They indeed worked with the Mongols to keep the Han under both within China at the time. But toward the end of the Qing they were indeed willing to let the Hui Muslims fight. The foreigners were afraid of the way the Hui fought fiercely.

     

    The Manchus used the 'garrison' system of posting Manchu 'banners' or militias to maintain their political power in Qing China, with support from the Mongols and Tibetans as their allies. The Tibetans promoted the court religion of Tibetan Buddhism while the Manchus and the Mongols dominated the Qing Manchu-Mongol Armies known as the 'Eight Banners' as well as the Qing Standard Armies consisting of Han and Hui soldiers. After the Opium Wars instigated the Taiping Rebellion, the Manchu rulers finally allowed the Hans to form the Xiang and later Huai Armies to fight the Taiping Rebels. The Xiang was later disbanded with its commanders appointed as viceroys and succeeded by the Huai and Chu Armies to put down the Dungan Revolt. The Beiyang Army then subsumed the Huai and Chu Armies to form the 'New Armies' of the late Qing period following the First Sino-Japanese War in 1895.

    Although the Manchus were able to import modern weapons from Europe to equip the Qing Armies, their medieval mindset prevent them from truly modernizing and industrializing China. The Qing Navy had the most battleships imported from Europe in all of Asia but still lost to the Japanese Navy during the First Sino-Japanese War. With the Hans now in control of the Beiyang Army which was the first modern army in China, the Hans finally succeeded in toppling the Qing Dynasty during the Xinhai Revolution in 1911. The Manchu decision to allow the Hans to form their own Xiang/Huai/Chu Armies which were later subsumed by the Beiyang Army doomed their fate as their 'Eight Banners' and Qing Standard Armies were hopelessly medieval to oppose the Beiyang Army of Yuan Shi-kai.

    Replies: @antibeast, @China Japan and Korea Bromance of Three Kingdoms

    After the Opium Wars triggered the Taiping Rebellion, the Manchu rulers finally allowed the Hans to form the Xiang and later Huai Armies to fight the Taiping Rebels.

    Correction: ‘triggered’ not ‘instigated’ should be the right word.

  73. @John Burns, Gettysburg Partisan
    @4Dchessmaster

    I can see you are well and truly imbued with the usual Anglo-American liberal machine history.

    Notably, the minimization of the scope of Anglo-American Soviet support to the Soviet regime. Putting aside the fact that Operations Torch and Husky - plus the Battle of the Atlantic, plus the period of German defensive preparations for Overlord - were by no means small affairs, and soaked up large portions of Germany's limited resources, the best any stooge inspired by Soviet myth can do with regards to Lend-Lease is claim that it didn't make up the decisive edge and that the USSR could have won without it. But even if that were true (LOL), it doesn't change the error of your ways.

    When you say, "The war in Europe was well on its way to being concluded" before Overlord, that totally evades the question of whether or not the USSR could have defeated Germany without all of the Allied support before the summer of 1944.

    And then the usual nonsense about Germany's uniquely evil plans for racial enslavement, blah blah. I know no one here wants to read 'Stalin's War of Extermination' (Hoffmann), but that repeated cliche earns the "blah blah" descriptor I give it.

    As an American, I can tell you that Americans do tend to minimize the Soviet influence on the war.

    The difference is that, unlike most Americans, I agree with General Patton that we had no business ever allying with them; our government was, rather obviously, filled with their spies, who were too busy Keelhauling those Slavs to a far worse fate than the mythical monster Germany ever actually had in mind for them.

    Patton was there on the spot, and he independently reached the same conclusion as contemporary and future honest American historians like Barnes, Beard, Chamberlain, Fleming, et al. Once any present American has made this mental realization, all of the nonsense about the Soviet Union's war effort disappears. Mismanagement? Let me ask you something: why did Stalin avoid the victory parade in Berlin? It wasn't just because of frequent bouts of mismanagement - like, say, Operation Mars, where the golden boy himself, Zhukov, lost nearly half a million soldiers (apparently just a drop in the bucket to the Soviet-Mongol Empire). It was because Stalin had wanted a whole lot more than Berlin.

    Replies: @4Dchessmaster, @but an humble craftsman

    Thank you, sir.

    It is instructive to look at the fate of those Russian POW who survived the horrid conditions in German camps.

  74. @showmethereal
    @AP

    Is the cause of the uptick of fertility in Germany per that graph - a result of recent migration into Germany (migrants having more children)?

    Replies: @AP

    I would assume so, but I don’t know.

  75. @antibeast


    You are correct that the Manchu did not want to have a Han army… They indeed worked with the Mongols to keep the Han under both within China at the time. But toward the end of the Qing they were indeed willing to let the Hui Muslims fight. The foreigners were afraid of the way the Hui fought fiercely.

     

    The Manchus used the 'garrison' system of posting Manchu 'banners' or militias to maintain their political power in Qing China, with support from the Mongols and Tibetans as their allies. The Tibetans promoted the court religion of Tibetan Buddhism while the Manchus and the Mongols dominated the Qing Manchu-Mongol Armies known as the 'Eight Banners' as well as the Qing Standard Armies consisting of Han and Hui soldiers. After the Opium Wars instigated the Taiping Rebellion, the Manchu rulers finally allowed the Hans to form the Xiang and later Huai Armies to fight the Taiping Rebels. The Xiang was later disbanded with its commanders appointed as viceroys and succeeded by the Huai and Chu Armies to put down the Dungan Revolt. The Beiyang Army then subsumed the Huai and Chu Armies to form the 'New Armies' of the late Qing period following the First Sino-Japanese War in 1895.

    Although the Manchus were able to import modern weapons from Europe to equip the Qing Armies, their medieval mindset prevent them from truly modernizing and industrializing China. The Qing Navy had the most battleships imported from Europe in all of Asia but still lost to the Japanese Navy during the First Sino-Japanese War. With the Hans now in control of the Beiyang Army which was the first modern army in China, the Hans finally succeeded in toppling the Qing Dynasty during the Xinhai Revolution in 1911. The Manchu decision to allow the Hans to form their own Xiang/Huai/Chu Armies which were later subsumed by the Beiyang Army doomed their fate as their 'Eight Banners' and Qing Standard Armies were hopelessly medieval to oppose the Beiyang Army of Yuan Shi-kai.

    Replies: @antibeast, @China Japan and Korea Bromance of Three Kingdoms

    Hans were not a monolith:

    1. Northern Hans: not really anti-Manchu, but will chimp out for other reasons, i.e. Nian Rebels, Boxers
    2. Central Yangtze- e.g. Hunan, Huai: will belie anti-Manchuism if Qing upholds Neo-Confucian orthodoxy, high performers in imperial exams
    3. Deep South- Hakka/Canto: intensely anti-Manchu, lesser performers in exams

    • Replies: @antibeast
    @China Japan and Korea Bromance of Three Kingdoms

    1. Northern Hans: not really anti-Manchu, but will chimp out for other reasons, i.e. Nian Rebels, Boxers
    2. Central Yangtze- e.g. Hunan, Huai: will belie anti-Manchuism if Qing upholds Neo-Confucian orthodoxy, high performers in imperial exams
    3. Deep South- Hakka/Canto: intensely anti-Manchu, lesser performers in exams


     

    1. Northern Hans: The Northern Hans were not as anti-Manchu because they were recent settlers who moved into Manchuria after the Manchu rulers allowed Han settlement of their ancestral homeland following the Opium Wars. But Yuan Shi-kai established the Baoding Military Academy in the city of Baoding, Hebei which was the HQ of his Beiyang 'New' Army in Northeast China. Yuan's defection to the Xinhai Revolution sealed the fate of the Manchu rulers, ending the reign of the Qing Dynasty.

    2. Central Yangtse: You're right that the Hans in Central/Western China tend to do well in the imperial exams and thus occupied high positions in the Imperial Bureaucracy, even during the Qing Dynasty because the Manchu rulers had to depend upon Han Confucian scholar-officials to run the Chinese State. But the Xiang/Huai/Chu armies were drawn from Hunan province in Central China where they rebelled against the Manchu rulers during the Xinhai Revolution which saw anti-Manchu massacres in Wuhan and Xi'an. The Gelaohui secret society also participated in the Xinhai Revolution.

    3. Deep South: Cantonese/Hakka as well as Fujianese immigrants emigrated en masse after the Taiping Rebellion, forming 'Overseas Chinese' communities in HK, Southeast Asia, Japan and North America. That's where the anti-Manchu revolutionary movements coalesced into the 'tongmenghui', led by Sun Yat-sen, which succeeded in organizing the Xinhai Revolution against the Qing Dynasty.

    In summary, the Opium Wars triggered the Taiping Rebellion which forced the Manchu rulers to cede more power to the Hans who formed the region-based Xiang/Huai/Chu Armies, later succeeded by the Beiyang Army of Yuan Shi-kai. The Manchu rulers also agreed to import modern weapons from Europe to equip these new Armies which was composed entirely of Hans. After the Taiping Rebellion, large numbers of Southern Hans emigrated from China who formed 'Overseas Chinese' communities throughout the world. These two groups of Hans then rebelled against the Manchus, finally overthrowing the Qing Dynasty in 1911.

    For the Hans, the founding of the Republic of China was a monumental achievement and a historic event as it was the first Republican State in all of Asia. The subsequent period from 1911 to 1937 saw the rise of a modern China with a rapidly industrializing economy whose rate of industrialization surpassed that of British India, Tsarist Russia, Stalin's USSR and Imperial Japan. In other words, the period from 1850 to 1949 was the century of Rebellions, Revolutions and Republicanism which culminated in the founding of the People's Republic of China.

    That doesn't sound like 'humiliation', does it?

    Replies: @AltanBakshi

  76. @China Japan and Korea Bromance of Three Kingdoms
    @antibeast

    Hans were not a monolith:

    1. Northern Hans: not really anti-Manchu, but will chimp out for other reasons, i.e. Nian Rebels, Boxers
    2. Central Yangtze- e.g. Hunan, Huai: will belie anti-Manchuism if Qing upholds Neo-Confucian orthodoxy, high performers in imperial exams
    3. Deep South- Hakka/Canto: intensely anti-Manchu, lesser performers in exams

    Replies: @antibeast

    1. Northern Hans: not really anti-Manchu, but will chimp out for other reasons, i.e. Nian Rebels, Boxers
    2. Central Yangtze- e.g. Hunan, Huai: will belie anti-Manchuism if Qing upholds Neo-Confucian orthodoxy, high performers in imperial exams
    3. Deep South- Hakka/Canto: intensely anti-Manchu, lesser performers in exams

    1. Northern Hans: The Northern Hans were not as anti-Manchu because they were recent settlers who moved into Manchuria after the Manchu rulers allowed Han settlement of their ancestral homeland following the Opium Wars. But Yuan Shi-kai established the Baoding Military Academy in the city of Baoding, Hebei which was the HQ of his Beiyang ‘New’ Army in Northeast China. Yuan’s defection to the Xinhai Revolution sealed the fate of the Manchu rulers, ending the reign of the Qing Dynasty.

    2. Central Yangtse: You’re right that the Hans in Central/Western China tend to do well in the imperial exams and thus occupied high positions in the Imperial Bureaucracy, even during the Qing Dynasty because the Manchu rulers had to depend upon Han Confucian scholar-officials to run the Chinese State. But the Xiang/Huai/Chu armies were drawn from Hunan province in Central China where they rebelled against the Manchu rulers during the Xinhai Revolution which saw anti-Manchu massacres in Wuhan and Xi’an. The Gelaohui secret society also participated in the Xinhai Revolution.

    3. Deep South: Cantonese/Hakka as well as Fujianese immigrants emigrated en masse after the Taiping Rebellion, forming ‘Overseas Chinese’ communities in HK, Southeast Asia, Japan and North America. That’s where the anti-Manchu revolutionary movements coalesced into the ‘tongmenghui‘, led by Sun Yat-sen, which succeeded in organizing the Xinhai Revolution against the Qing Dynasty.

    In summary, the Opium Wars triggered the Taiping Rebellion which forced the Manchu rulers to cede more power to the Hans who formed the region-based Xiang/Huai/Chu Armies, later succeeded by the Beiyang Army of Yuan Shi-kai. The Manchu rulers also agreed to import modern weapons from Europe to equip these new Armies which was composed entirely of Hans. After the Taiping Rebellion, large numbers of Southern Hans emigrated from China who formed ‘Overseas Chinese’ communities throughout the world. These two groups of Hans then rebelled against the Manchus, finally overthrowing the Qing Dynasty in 1911.

    For the Hans, the founding of the Republic of China was a monumental achievement and a historic event as it was the first Republican State in all of Asia. The subsequent period from 1911 to 1937 saw the rise of a modern China with a rapidly industrializing economy whose rate of industrialization surpassed that of British India, Tsarist Russia, Stalin’s USSR and Imperial Japan. In other words, the period from 1850 to 1949 was the century of Rebellions, Revolutions and Republicanism which culminated in the founding of the People’s Republic of China.

    That doesn’t sound like ‘humiliation’, does it?

    • Replies: @AltanBakshi
    @antibeast


    Northern Hans: The Northern Hans were not as anti-Manchu because they were recent settlers who moved into Manchuria
     
    I think that he meant by Northern Han those Han who live north of Huai river, and not those Han who immigrated to Manchuria.

    For the Hans, the founding of the Republic of China was a monumental achievement and a historic event as it was the first Republican State in all of Asia. The subsequent period from 1911 to 1937 saw the rise of a modern China with a rapidly industrializing economy whose rate of industrialization surpassed that of British India, Tsarist Russia, Stalin’s USSR and Imperial Japan. In other words, the period from 1850 to 1949 was the century of Rebellions, Revolutions and Republicanism which culminated in the founding of the People’s Republic of China.
     
    To you the period of warlordism and fragmentation, when foreign citizens had extraterritorial rights, when Western gunboats navigated freely on Yangtze, was not a century of shame and humiliation? Can you deceive yourself anymore?

    The collapse of Qing and Xinhai revolution was one of the greatest tragedies of the 20th century. Manchus should have admitted more Northern Han to Banners, and shared their power with them.

    Replies: @antibeast

  77. @antibeast
    @China Japan and Korea Bromance of Three Kingdoms

    1. Northern Hans: not really anti-Manchu, but will chimp out for other reasons, i.e. Nian Rebels, Boxers
    2. Central Yangtze- e.g. Hunan, Huai: will belie anti-Manchuism if Qing upholds Neo-Confucian orthodoxy, high performers in imperial exams
    3. Deep South- Hakka/Canto: intensely anti-Manchu, lesser performers in exams


     

    1. Northern Hans: The Northern Hans were not as anti-Manchu because they were recent settlers who moved into Manchuria after the Manchu rulers allowed Han settlement of their ancestral homeland following the Opium Wars. But Yuan Shi-kai established the Baoding Military Academy in the city of Baoding, Hebei which was the HQ of his Beiyang 'New' Army in Northeast China. Yuan's defection to the Xinhai Revolution sealed the fate of the Manchu rulers, ending the reign of the Qing Dynasty.

    2. Central Yangtse: You're right that the Hans in Central/Western China tend to do well in the imperial exams and thus occupied high positions in the Imperial Bureaucracy, even during the Qing Dynasty because the Manchu rulers had to depend upon Han Confucian scholar-officials to run the Chinese State. But the Xiang/Huai/Chu armies were drawn from Hunan province in Central China where they rebelled against the Manchu rulers during the Xinhai Revolution which saw anti-Manchu massacres in Wuhan and Xi'an. The Gelaohui secret society also participated in the Xinhai Revolution.

    3. Deep South: Cantonese/Hakka as well as Fujianese immigrants emigrated en masse after the Taiping Rebellion, forming 'Overseas Chinese' communities in HK, Southeast Asia, Japan and North America. That's where the anti-Manchu revolutionary movements coalesced into the 'tongmenghui', led by Sun Yat-sen, which succeeded in organizing the Xinhai Revolution against the Qing Dynasty.

    In summary, the Opium Wars triggered the Taiping Rebellion which forced the Manchu rulers to cede more power to the Hans who formed the region-based Xiang/Huai/Chu Armies, later succeeded by the Beiyang Army of Yuan Shi-kai. The Manchu rulers also agreed to import modern weapons from Europe to equip these new Armies which was composed entirely of Hans. After the Taiping Rebellion, large numbers of Southern Hans emigrated from China who formed 'Overseas Chinese' communities throughout the world. These two groups of Hans then rebelled against the Manchus, finally overthrowing the Qing Dynasty in 1911.

    For the Hans, the founding of the Republic of China was a monumental achievement and a historic event as it was the first Republican State in all of Asia. The subsequent period from 1911 to 1937 saw the rise of a modern China with a rapidly industrializing economy whose rate of industrialization surpassed that of British India, Tsarist Russia, Stalin's USSR and Imperial Japan. In other words, the period from 1850 to 1949 was the century of Rebellions, Revolutions and Republicanism which culminated in the founding of the People's Republic of China.

    That doesn't sound like 'humiliation', does it?

    Replies: @AltanBakshi

    Northern Hans: The Northern Hans were not as anti-Manchu because they were recent settlers who moved into Manchuria

    I think that he meant by Northern Han those Han who live north of Huai river, and not those Han who immigrated to Manchuria.

    For the Hans, the founding of the Republic of China was a monumental achievement and a historic event as it was the first Republican State in all of Asia. The subsequent period from 1911 to 1937 saw the rise of a modern China with a rapidly industrializing economy whose rate of industrialization surpassed that of British India, Tsarist Russia, Stalin’s USSR and Imperial Japan. In other words, the period from 1850 to 1949 was the century of Rebellions, Revolutions and Republicanism which culminated in the founding of the People’s Republic of China.

    To you the period of warlordism and fragmentation, when foreign citizens had extraterritorial rights, when Western gunboats navigated freely on Yangtze, was not a century of shame and humiliation? Can you deceive yourself anymore?

    The collapse of Qing and Xinhai revolution was one of the greatest tragedies of the 20th century. Manchus should have admitted more Northern Han to Banners, and shared their power with them.

    • Replies: @antibeast
    @AltanBakshi



    To you the period of warlordism and fragmentation, when foreign citizens had extraterritorial rights, when Western gunboats navigated freely on Yangtze, was not a century of shame and humiliation? Can you deceive yourself anymore?

     

    The problem with the historical narrative called 'century of humiliation' is that it follows a 'meme' of "pre-1949 = BAD; post-1949 = GOOD" which tends to extol the CCP as the 'savior' of China being 'humiliated' by Western Powers.

    But this historical narrative is clearly false, as explained by Jane Elliot and Edward Dreyer, per Wikipedia:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Century_of_humiliation


    Jane E. Elliott criticized the allegation that China refused to modernize or was unable to defeat Western armies as simplistic, noting that China embarked on a massive military modernization in the late 1800s after several defeats, buying weapons from Western countries and manufacturing their own at arsenals, such as the Hanyang Arsenal during the Boxer Rebellion. In addition, Elliott questioned the claim that while Chinese society was traumatized by the Western victories, as many Chinese peasants (90% of the population at that time) living outside the concessions continued about their daily lives, uninterrupted and without any feeling of "humiliation".

    Historians have judged the Qing dynasty's vulnerability and weakness to foreign imperialism in the 19th century to be based mainly on its maritime naval weakness while it achieved military success against Westerners on land, the historian Edward L. Dreyer said that "China's nineteenth-century humiliations were strongly related to her weakness and failure at sea. At the start of the First Opium War, China had no unified navy and not a sense of how vulnerable she was to attack from the sea. British navy forces sailed and steamed wherever they wanted to go. In the Arrow War (1856–60), the Chinese had no way to prevent the Anglo-French navy expedition of 1860 from sailing into the Gulf of Zhili and landing as near as possible to Beijing. Meanwhile, new but not exactly modern Chinese armies suppressed the midcentury rebellions, bluffed Russia into a peaceful settlement of disputed frontiers in Central Asia, and defeated the French forces on land in the Sino-French War (1884–85). But the defeat at sea, and the resulting threat to steamship traffic to Taiwan, forced China to conclude peace on unfavorable terms."

     

    I tend to agree with Jane Elliot and Edward Dreyer who view this historical narrative of the 'century of humiliation' as overly simplistic which the CCP uses as reductionist logic to explain away China's backwardness prior to 1949. This false narrative ignores the long period of stagnation which followed the Qing Dynasty's policies of restricting trade and ignoring industry in favor aggressive expansionism and military conquests, which was the exact opposite to the prior policies of the Song, Yuan and Ming Dynasties. Despite the hostility of the Manchu rulers to foreign trade which was limited to Macao (and later Canton), China did in fact conduct a highly profitable trading relationship with the Spanish via their Galleon Trade which saw up to half of Mexican silver mined in the Americas flowing to China during that period lasting up to 1815. But that lucrative trade ended when the Spanish Galleons declined with Mexico gaining its independence in 1821. That in turn caused the Daoguang Depression (1820-1850) which happened to coincide with the First Opium War. The outflow of Chinese silver due to drug smuggling could have contributed to the Daoguang Depression but that was an incidental rather than consequential event.

    Replies: @AltanBakshi

  78. @Dmitry
    @AP

    No if the economy was successful earlier than it was with the Soviet economic policy, then the present population would have been smaller (unless you are imagining some alternative future without a Second World War), as there would be less time between leaving the Malthusian trap and the demographic transition. The reason the population in Russia is higher than other European countries like Germany or France, is the relative lateness of the economic development in the Russian Empire. Demographic transition in Russian Empire is beginning in the 1880s-1890s, due to relatively later industrialization and urbanization.

    While China, there was the far more disastrous19th century and 20th century than in Russia, as a result the demographic transition was delayed until the population was climbing to a billion. And India will bypass China’s population around end of this decade, as there is a later demographic transition.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zqHZRwVU_0E

    Replies: @AP, @Rattus Norwegius

    Russia had a higher birthrate than Poland prior to WW2, if the Russian revolution was averted or failed, then that would be the case afterwards too. It would also be the case if the Soviet Union avoided WW2 or performed better.

  79. @AltanBakshi
    @antibeast


    Northern Hans: The Northern Hans were not as anti-Manchu because they were recent settlers who moved into Manchuria
     
    I think that he meant by Northern Han those Han who live north of Huai river, and not those Han who immigrated to Manchuria.

    For the Hans, the founding of the Republic of China was a monumental achievement and a historic event as it was the first Republican State in all of Asia. The subsequent period from 1911 to 1937 saw the rise of a modern China with a rapidly industrializing economy whose rate of industrialization surpassed that of British India, Tsarist Russia, Stalin’s USSR and Imperial Japan. In other words, the period from 1850 to 1949 was the century of Rebellions, Revolutions and Republicanism which culminated in the founding of the People’s Republic of China.
     
    To you the period of warlordism and fragmentation, when foreign citizens had extraterritorial rights, when Western gunboats navigated freely on Yangtze, was not a century of shame and humiliation? Can you deceive yourself anymore?

    The collapse of Qing and Xinhai revolution was one of the greatest tragedies of the 20th century. Manchus should have admitted more Northern Han to Banners, and shared their power with them.

    Replies: @antibeast

    To you the period of warlordism and fragmentation, when foreign citizens had extraterritorial rights, when Western gunboats navigated freely on Yangtze, was not a century of shame and humiliation? Can you deceive yourself anymore?

    The problem with the historical narrative called ‘century of humiliation’ is that it follows a ‘meme’ of “pre-1949 = BAD; post-1949 = GOOD” which tends to extol the CCP as the ‘savior’ of China being ‘humiliated’ by Western Powers.

    But this historical narrative is clearly false, as explained by Jane Elliot and Edward Dreyer, per Wikipedia:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Century_of_humiliation

    Jane E. Elliott criticized the allegation that China refused to modernize or was unable to defeat Western armies as simplistic, noting that China embarked on a massive military modernization in the late 1800s after several defeats, buying weapons from Western countries and manufacturing their own at arsenals, such as the Hanyang Arsenal during the Boxer Rebellion. In addition, Elliott questioned the claim that while Chinese society was traumatized by the Western victories, as many Chinese peasants (90% of the population at that time) living outside the concessions continued about their daily lives, uninterrupted and without any feeling of “humiliation”.

    Historians have judged the Qing dynasty’s vulnerability and weakness to foreign imperialism in the 19th century to be based mainly on its maritime naval weakness while it achieved military success against Westerners on land, the historian Edward L. Dreyer said that “China’s nineteenth-century humiliations were strongly related to her weakness and failure at sea. At the start of the First Opium War, China had no unified navy and not a sense of how vulnerable she was to attack from the sea. British navy forces sailed and steamed wherever they wanted to go. In the Arrow War (1856–60), the Chinese had no way to prevent the Anglo-French navy expedition of 1860 from sailing into the Gulf of Zhili and landing as near as possible to Beijing. Meanwhile, new but not exactly modern Chinese armies suppressed the midcentury rebellions, bluffed Russia into a peaceful settlement of disputed frontiers in Central Asia, and defeated the French forces on land in the Sino-French War (1884–85). But the defeat at sea, and the resulting threat to steamship traffic to Taiwan, forced China to conclude peace on unfavorable terms.”

    I tend to agree with Jane Elliot and Edward Dreyer who view this historical narrative of the ‘century of humiliation’ as overly simplistic which the CCP uses as reductionist logic to explain away China’s backwardness prior to 1949. This false narrative ignores the long period of stagnation which followed the Qing Dynasty’s policies of restricting trade and ignoring industry in favor aggressive expansionism and military conquests, which was the exact opposite to the prior policies of the Song, Yuan and Ming Dynasties. Despite the hostility of the Manchu rulers to foreign trade which was limited to Macao (and later Canton), China did in fact conduct a highly profitable trading relationship with the Spanish via their Galleon Trade which saw up to half of Mexican silver mined in the Americas flowing to China during that period lasting up to 1815. But that lucrative trade ended when the Spanish Galleons declined with Mexico gaining its independence in 1821. That in turn caused the Daoguang Depression (1820-1850) which happened to coincide with the First Opium War. The outflow of Chinese silver due to drug smuggling could have contributed to the Daoguang Depression but that was an incidental rather than consequential event.

    • Replies: @AltanBakshi
    @antibeast

    From 1915 to 1950 China was in constant state of strife and war, Republicans had no hold over countryside or tribal areas, which were full of bandits and vagabonds. It was the Communist Party which put end to such state of affairs. You are a revisionist, Kuomintang was spiritually foreign to China, they were full of protestants, Methodists and other various Christian heresies, thank Heaven(and CCP) that such devils lost. CCP is nothing else than a continuation of Legalist thinking under a thin veneer of Western philosophy.

    Replies: @antibeast

  80. @antibeast
    @AltanBakshi



    To you the period of warlordism and fragmentation, when foreign citizens had extraterritorial rights, when Western gunboats navigated freely on Yangtze, was not a century of shame and humiliation? Can you deceive yourself anymore?

     

    The problem with the historical narrative called 'century of humiliation' is that it follows a 'meme' of "pre-1949 = BAD; post-1949 = GOOD" which tends to extol the CCP as the 'savior' of China being 'humiliated' by Western Powers.

    But this historical narrative is clearly false, as explained by Jane Elliot and Edward Dreyer, per Wikipedia:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Century_of_humiliation


    Jane E. Elliott criticized the allegation that China refused to modernize or was unable to defeat Western armies as simplistic, noting that China embarked on a massive military modernization in the late 1800s after several defeats, buying weapons from Western countries and manufacturing their own at arsenals, such as the Hanyang Arsenal during the Boxer Rebellion. In addition, Elliott questioned the claim that while Chinese society was traumatized by the Western victories, as many Chinese peasants (90% of the population at that time) living outside the concessions continued about their daily lives, uninterrupted and without any feeling of "humiliation".

    Historians have judged the Qing dynasty's vulnerability and weakness to foreign imperialism in the 19th century to be based mainly on its maritime naval weakness while it achieved military success against Westerners on land, the historian Edward L. Dreyer said that "China's nineteenth-century humiliations were strongly related to her weakness and failure at sea. At the start of the First Opium War, China had no unified navy and not a sense of how vulnerable she was to attack from the sea. British navy forces sailed and steamed wherever they wanted to go. In the Arrow War (1856–60), the Chinese had no way to prevent the Anglo-French navy expedition of 1860 from sailing into the Gulf of Zhili and landing as near as possible to Beijing. Meanwhile, new but not exactly modern Chinese armies suppressed the midcentury rebellions, bluffed Russia into a peaceful settlement of disputed frontiers in Central Asia, and defeated the French forces on land in the Sino-French War (1884–85). But the defeat at sea, and the resulting threat to steamship traffic to Taiwan, forced China to conclude peace on unfavorable terms."

     

    I tend to agree with Jane Elliot and Edward Dreyer who view this historical narrative of the 'century of humiliation' as overly simplistic which the CCP uses as reductionist logic to explain away China's backwardness prior to 1949. This false narrative ignores the long period of stagnation which followed the Qing Dynasty's policies of restricting trade and ignoring industry in favor aggressive expansionism and military conquests, which was the exact opposite to the prior policies of the Song, Yuan and Ming Dynasties. Despite the hostility of the Manchu rulers to foreign trade which was limited to Macao (and later Canton), China did in fact conduct a highly profitable trading relationship with the Spanish via their Galleon Trade which saw up to half of Mexican silver mined in the Americas flowing to China during that period lasting up to 1815. But that lucrative trade ended when the Spanish Galleons declined with Mexico gaining its independence in 1821. That in turn caused the Daoguang Depression (1820-1850) which happened to coincide with the First Opium War. The outflow of Chinese silver due to drug smuggling could have contributed to the Daoguang Depression but that was an incidental rather than consequential event.

    Replies: @AltanBakshi

    From 1915 to 1950 China was in constant state of strife and war, Republicans had no hold over countryside or tribal areas, which were full of bandits and vagabonds. It was the Communist Party which put end to such state of affairs. You are a revisionist, Kuomintang was spiritually foreign to China, they were full of protestants, Methodists and other various Christian heresies, thank Heaven(and CCP) that such devils lost. CCP is nothing else than a continuation of Legalist thinking under a thin veneer of Western philosophy.

    • Replies: @antibeast
    @AltanBakshi

    From 1915 to 1950 China was in constant state of strife and war, Republicans had no hold over countryside or tribal areas, which were full of bandits and vagabonds.


     

    Chiang did manage to defeat the warlords during the Northern Expedition after which he purged the communists from the KMT. Moving his capital to Nanjing, he then started 'nationalizing' the assets of the capitalists in Shanghai, forcing the private banks there to purchase government bonds denominated in the silver-backed yuan currency issued by the State-owned Central Bank. He then established the National Defense Planning Commission later renamed National Resources Commission (NRC) initially to develop defense industries which was later expanded to include 'nationalizing' 70% of the private industries in China prior to, during and after the war. After losing the Chinese Civil War, Chiang then fled to Taiwan with members of the NRC who later played important roles in the State-led economic and industrial development of Taiwan.

    Contrary to his detractors, Chiang was hostile to both 'communists' and 'capitalists' because he felt they were not 'nationalists' due to their foreign ties to the Soviets ('communists') and the Westerners ('capitalists'). He wasn't interested in either the Western ('liberal democratic') model or the Soviet ('marxist-leninist') model but preferred the East Asian ('autocratic nationalist') model which he learned from his education in Imperial Japan and his training in the Imperial Japanese Army. Chiang declared Martial Law and ruled Taiwan as a military dictator for life, succeeded by his son who became President of the ROC (Taiwan) until his death in 1988.

    Had Japan not invaded China, Chiang would have turned the Republic of China into a world power by the end of the war as he was making slow but steady progress against both 'communists' and 'capitalists' as well as warlords and gangsters. The 'communists' found themselves in dire straits after Chiang nearly destroyed them which forced their long retreat known as the 'Long March' during which Mao invented his Maoist ideology which called for a 'people's war of national liberation' against the Japanese imperialists. The CCP then grew TENFOLD during the Japanese invasion of China because the Maoists appealed to the anti-Japanese sentiments of the Chinese masses. That's how Mao won over the hearts and minds of the Chinese masses, by pandering to their hatred of the Japanese imperialists, whom Chiang fought tooth and nail for over eight years!!!

    Chiang deserve all the credit for fighting the Japanese not Mao who bid his time waiting for the war to end.

    Replies: @AltanBakshi

  81. @AltanBakshi
    @antibeast

    From 1915 to 1950 China was in constant state of strife and war, Republicans had no hold over countryside or tribal areas, which were full of bandits and vagabonds. It was the Communist Party which put end to such state of affairs. You are a revisionist, Kuomintang was spiritually foreign to China, they were full of protestants, Methodists and other various Christian heresies, thank Heaven(and CCP) that such devils lost. CCP is nothing else than a continuation of Legalist thinking under a thin veneer of Western philosophy.

    Replies: @antibeast

    From 1915 to 1950 China was in constant state of strife and war, Republicans had no hold over countryside or tribal areas, which were full of bandits and vagabonds.

    Chiang did manage to defeat the warlords during the Northern Expedition after which he purged the communists from the KMT. Moving his capital to Nanjing, he then started ‘nationalizing’ the assets of the capitalists in Shanghai, forcing the private banks there to purchase government bonds denominated in the silver-backed yuan currency issued by the State-owned Central Bank. He then established the National Defense Planning Commission later renamed National Resources Commission (NRC) initially to develop defense industries which was later expanded to include ‘nationalizing’ 70% of the private industries in China prior to, during and after the war. After losing the Chinese Civil War, Chiang then fled to Taiwan with members of the NRC who later played important roles in the State-led economic and industrial development of Taiwan.

    Contrary to his detractors, Chiang was hostile to both ‘communists’ and ‘capitalists’ because he felt they were not ‘nationalists’ due to their foreign ties to the Soviets (‘communists’) and the Westerners (‘capitalists’). He wasn’t interested in either the Western (‘liberal democratic’) model or the Soviet (‘marxist-leninist’) model but preferred the East Asian (‘autocratic nationalist’) model which he learned from his education in Imperial Japan and his training in the Imperial Japanese Army. Chiang declared Martial Law and ruled Taiwan as a military dictator for life, succeeded by his son who became President of the ROC (Taiwan) until his death in 1988.

    Had Japan not invaded China, Chiang would have turned the Republic of China into a world power by the end of the war as he was making slow but steady progress against both ‘communists’ and ‘capitalists’ as well as warlords and gangsters. The ‘communists’ found themselves in dire straits after Chiang nearly destroyed them which forced their long retreat known as the ‘Long March’ during which Mao invented his Maoist ideology which called for a ‘people’s war of national liberation’ against the Japanese imperialists. The CCP then grew TENFOLD during the Japanese invasion of China because the Maoists appealed to the anti-Japanese sentiments of the Chinese masses. That’s how Mao won over the hearts and minds of the Chinese masses, by pandering to their hatred of the Japanese imperialists, whom Chiang fought tooth and nail for over eight years!!!

    Chiang deserve all the credit for fighting the Japanese not Mao who bid his time waiting for the war to end.

    • Replies: @AltanBakshi
    @antibeast


    Chiang did manage to defeat the warlords during the Northern Expedition
     
    Defeating warlords by delegating power to them? How many corrupt cliques and local petty tyrants there were in China during the Kuomintang rule? You can't say with a straight face that Kuomintang rule had any resemblance of working and centralised government, even before the Japanese attack, in years 1928-1937, but how quickly CCP established a working centralised administration over China after the Republican defeat? Extremely quickly, in year or two.

    Ha ha, Kuomintang was so corrupt and fragile, that even with huge battle experienced armies and heavy Western support they lost to Communists, their cadres were infiltrated from the times of establishment of Whampoa academy.

    Chiang deserve all the credit for fighting the Japanese not Mao who bid his time waiting for the war to end.
     
    Chiang deserves all credit for the spectacular losses sustained by China, when fighting against a power that had a bad case of imperial overreach.

    One day CCP will rule over Taiwan, and all traitors will have then a chance to redeem themselves with their blood and hard labour!

    Replies: @antibeast

  82. @antibeast
    @AltanBakshi

    From 1915 to 1950 China was in constant state of strife and war, Republicans had no hold over countryside or tribal areas, which were full of bandits and vagabonds.


     

    Chiang did manage to defeat the warlords during the Northern Expedition after which he purged the communists from the KMT. Moving his capital to Nanjing, he then started 'nationalizing' the assets of the capitalists in Shanghai, forcing the private banks there to purchase government bonds denominated in the silver-backed yuan currency issued by the State-owned Central Bank. He then established the National Defense Planning Commission later renamed National Resources Commission (NRC) initially to develop defense industries which was later expanded to include 'nationalizing' 70% of the private industries in China prior to, during and after the war. After losing the Chinese Civil War, Chiang then fled to Taiwan with members of the NRC who later played important roles in the State-led economic and industrial development of Taiwan.

    Contrary to his detractors, Chiang was hostile to both 'communists' and 'capitalists' because he felt they were not 'nationalists' due to their foreign ties to the Soviets ('communists') and the Westerners ('capitalists'). He wasn't interested in either the Western ('liberal democratic') model or the Soviet ('marxist-leninist') model but preferred the East Asian ('autocratic nationalist') model which he learned from his education in Imperial Japan and his training in the Imperial Japanese Army. Chiang declared Martial Law and ruled Taiwan as a military dictator for life, succeeded by his son who became President of the ROC (Taiwan) until his death in 1988.

    Had Japan not invaded China, Chiang would have turned the Republic of China into a world power by the end of the war as he was making slow but steady progress against both 'communists' and 'capitalists' as well as warlords and gangsters. The 'communists' found themselves in dire straits after Chiang nearly destroyed them which forced their long retreat known as the 'Long March' during which Mao invented his Maoist ideology which called for a 'people's war of national liberation' against the Japanese imperialists. The CCP then grew TENFOLD during the Japanese invasion of China because the Maoists appealed to the anti-Japanese sentiments of the Chinese masses. That's how Mao won over the hearts and minds of the Chinese masses, by pandering to their hatred of the Japanese imperialists, whom Chiang fought tooth and nail for over eight years!!!

    Chiang deserve all the credit for fighting the Japanese not Mao who bid his time waiting for the war to end.

    Replies: @AltanBakshi

    Chiang did manage to defeat the warlords during the Northern Expedition

    Defeating warlords by delegating power to them? How many corrupt cliques and local petty tyrants there were in China during the Kuomintang rule? You can’t say with a straight face that Kuomintang rule had any resemblance of working and centralised government, even before the Japanese attack, in years 1928-1937, but how quickly CCP established a working centralised administration over China after the Republican defeat? Extremely quickly, in year or two.

    Ha ha, Kuomintang was so corrupt and fragile, that even with huge battle experienced armies and heavy Western support they lost to Communists, their cadres were infiltrated from the times of establishment of Whampoa academy.

    Chiang deserve all the credit for fighting the Japanese not Mao who bid his time waiting for the war to end.

    Chiang deserves all credit for the spectacular losses sustained by China, when fighting against a power that had a bad case of imperial overreach.

    One day CCP will rule over Taiwan, and all traitors will have then a chance to redeem themselves with their blood and hard labour!

    • Replies: @antibeast
    @AltanBakshi

    Ha ha, Kuomintang was so corrupt and fragile, that even with huge battle experienced armies and heavy Western support they lost to Communists, their cadres were infiltrated from the times of establishment of Whampoa academy.


     

    The Japanese invasion destroyed whatever political and economic progress that Chiang made during the Republican era. Chiang was not able to fully rein in the 'gangster-capitalists' who took advantage of the political chaos and social anarchy by infiltrating the KMT and acquiring political power during the Republican era. After losing to the CCP in the Chinese Civil War, Chiang admitted that the KMT 'gangster-capitalists' was responsible for his loss to Mao. His failure to purge the KMT of those 'gangster-capitalists' whose fortunes came from the Opium Trade doomed his fate on the mainland, something which he vowed not to repeat in Taiwan. By imposing Martial Law and ruling as a one-man military dictator, Chiang succeeded in curtailing the power of those 'gangster-capitalists' in Taiwan.

    On hindsight, Chiang should have imposed Martial Law on the mainland after defeating the warlords during Northern Expedition. Aware of the precariousness of his rule, Chiang tried to coopt the 'gangster-capitalists' by sharing power with them which ultimately doomed the Republican State to their corruption, ineptitude and profiteering prior to, during and after the war. Against all odds, Chiang fought and won against both Chinese warlords and Japanese imperialists but ultimately lost to the Chinese communists, due to factors beyond his control. But Chiang did succeed in abrogating the extraterritorial privileges granted to Western Powers, abolishing the foreign concessions leased to Western Powers, recovering the territories lost to Japan and gaining China a seat in the UNSC.

    The Republicans created the First Republican State in all of Asia, at a time when most of Asia were still colonies ruled by Western Powers. The Republicans started the full-scale modernization and large-scale industrialization of China which the Qing Dynasty belatedly initiated during the late Qing period. Despite its myriad social problems caused by 'gangster-capitalists' whose vast fortunes came from the Opium Trade, the Republic of China did resolve the political and economic backwardness of the Qing Dynasty which was caused mainly by the medieval obscurantism of the Manchu rulers. The rate of industrialization of Republican China surpassed that of British India, Tsarist Russia, Stalin's USSR and Imperial Japan during the prewar period (1911-1937). By 1937, Shanghai's GDP per capita had already reached the levels of Western Europe, with its industrialization having spread throughout the Lower Yangtse region. The Republic of China was already on its way to becoming the foremost industrial and military power in Asia when the Japanese invaded China, thereby instigating the Second Sino-Japanese War which destroyed the Republican State on the mainland.

  83. Gents, think there’s a false dichotomy. Modern PRC historians/public intellectual/wumao have come to consensus on a two things—

    1. We/PRC took many wrong turns after 1949 我们走过很多弯路
    2. Chiang deserves for much credit for not surrendering

    See my comment re road to Pearl Harbor
    https://www.unz.com/akarlin/woke-mil/#comment-4509462

    Chiang and KMT’s reputation has been rehabilitated in PRC media, e.g. in the movie 800 the ROC flag is prominently displayed. NRA in German uniforms portrayed as heros

    But the book will not be closed on this until the Taiwan Question, that is the last part of the Chinese Civil War is resolved.

    • Replies: @antibeast
    @China Japan and Korea Bromance of Three Kingdoms



    Gents, think there’s a false dichotomy. Modern PRC historians/public intellectual/wumao have come to consensus on a two things—

    1. We/PRC took many wrong turns after 1949 我们走过很多弯路
    2. Chiang deserves for much credit for not surrendering

     

    Agree. The false dichotomy of "pre-1949 = BAD; post-1949 = GOOD" as promoted by the CCP narrative of the so-called 'century of humiliation' is merely an obversion of the Western Orientalist view that nothing good came out of the period from the last half century of the Qing Dynasty to the first half century of Republican China.

    The Opium Wars spurred the modernization of the Qing Navy which was nevertheless defeated by the Japanese Navy during the First Sino-Japanese War. What was happening during that period was the tumultuous transition from ancient to modern China, from the Taiping Rebellion to the Xinhai Revolution, from Empire to the Republic, from medieval Feudalism to modern Republicanism, from Manchu to Han rule, all within a century of Rebellions, Revolutions and Republicanism.

    Russia went through a similar process, after its defeat in the Crimean War which spurred the modernization of the Russian Navy which was nevertheless defeated by the Japanese Navy during the Russo-Japanese War. Russia's modernization started from Tsar Alexander II's emancipation of Russian serfs to Sergey Witte's early industrialization of Tsarist Russia which then led to the 1905 Russian Revolution followed by the 1917 Russian Revolution and the subsequent Russian Civil War which led to the founding of the USSR.

    It was the best of times.

    Republican China produced lots of FIRSTS in China: first Chinese airplane; first Chinese steamboat; first Chinese locomotive; first Chinese electric trams; first Chinese electrical grid; first Chinese scientists to receive the Nobel Prize in Physics and Medicine as well as the first Chinese scientists who would later design China's first atomic bomb, first hydrogen bomb, first nuclear submarine, first jet fighter; first space satellite and first rocket engine after the founding of the PRC.

    It was the worst of times.

    Chiang's heroic deeds alone against all odds during the Second Sino-Japanese War would have qualified him to be a national hero except for his tragic failure to deal with the KMT gangster-capitalists which would cost him the Chinese Civil War. But his legacy remains the fact that Chiang defeated the warlords, unified the nation, modernized the state, created the central bank, imposed tariffs to protect domestic industries, abrogated extraterritorial privileges, abolished foreign concessions, nationalized defense and other strategic industries and built up the military.

    Republican China represented Chinese modernism in all its variety -- from Yuan Shi-kai's Constitutional Monarchy to Sun Yat-sen's Republican Democracy, from Chiang Kai-shek's Technocratic Nationalism to Mao Zedong's Maoist Communism -- which clashed with each other until reaching the final form of Chinese modernism today.


    But the book will not be closed on this until the Taiwan Question, that is the last part of the Chinese Civil War is resolved.

     

    The book has closed. The winner of the Chinese Civil War is Chiang Kai-shek's 'Technocratic Nationalism' which is the final form of Chinese modernism in Xi's China today.
  84. @AltanBakshi
    @antibeast


    Chiang did manage to defeat the warlords during the Northern Expedition
     
    Defeating warlords by delegating power to them? How many corrupt cliques and local petty tyrants there were in China during the Kuomintang rule? You can't say with a straight face that Kuomintang rule had any resemblance of working and centralised government, even before the Japanese attack, in years 1928-1937, but how quickly CCP established a working centralised administration over China after the Republican defeat? Extremely quickly, in year or two.

    Ha ha, Kuomintang was so corrupt and fragile, that even with huge battle experienced armies and heavy Western support they lost to Communists, their cadres were infiltrated from the times of establishment of Whampoa academy.

    Chiang deserve all the credit for fighting the Japanese not Mao who bid his time waiting for the war to end.
     
    Chiang deserves all credit for the spectacular losses sustained by China, when fighting against a power that had a bad case of imperial overreach.

    One day CCP will rule over Taiwan, and all traitors will have then a chance to redeem themselves with their blood and hard labour!

    Replies: @antibeast

    Ha ha, Kuomintang was so corrupt and fragile, that even with huge battle experienced armies and heavy Western support they lost to Communists, their cadres were infiltrated from the times of establishment of Whampoa academy.

    The Japanese invasion destroyed whatever political and economic progress that Chiang made during the Republican era. Chiang was not able to fully rein in the ‘gangster-capitalists’ who took advantage of the political chaos and social anarchy by infiltrating the KMT and acquiring political power during the Republican era. After losing to the CCP in the Chinese Civil War, Chiang admitted that the KMT ‘gangster-capitalists’ was responsible for his loss to Mao. His failure to purge the KMT of those ‘gangster-capitalists’ whose fortunes came from the Opium Trade doomed his fate on the mainland, something which he vowed not to repeat in Taiwan. By imposing Martial Law and ruling as a one-man military dictator, Chiang succeeded in curtailing the power of those ‘gangster-capitalists’ in Taiwan.

    On hindsight, Chiang should have imposed Martial Law on the mainland after defeating the warlords during Northern Expedition. Aware of the precariousness of his rule, Chiang tried to coopt the ‘gangster-capitalists’ by sharing power with them which ultimately doomed the Republican State to their corruption, ineptitude and profiteering prior to, during and after the war. Against all odds, Chiang fought and won against both Chinese warlords and Japanese imperialists but ultimately lost to the Chinese communists, due to factors beyond his control. But Chiang did succeed in abrogating the extraterritorial privileges granted to Western Powers, abolishing the foreign concessions leased to Western Powers, recovering the territories lost to Japan and gaining China a seat in the UNSC.

    The Republicans created the First Republican State in all of Asia, at a time when most of Asia were still colonies ruled by Western Powers. The Republicans started the full-scale modernization and large-scale industrialization of China which the Qing Dynasty belatedly initiated during the late Qing period. Despite its myriad social problems caused by ‘gangster-capitalists’ whose vast fortunes came from the Opium Trade, the Republic of China did resolve the political and economic backwardness of the Qing Dynasty which was caused mainly by the medieval obscurantism of the Manchu rulers. The rate of industrialization of Republican China surpassed that of British India, Tsarist Russia, Stalin’s USSR and Imperial Japan during the prewar period (1911-1937). By 1937, Shanghai’s GDP per capita had already reached the levels of Western Europe, with its industrialization having spread throughout the Lower Yangtse region. The Republic of China was already on its way to becoming the foremost industrial and military power in Asia when the Japanese invaded China, thereby instigating the Second Sino-Japanese War which destroyed the Republican State on the mainland.

  85. @China Japan and Korea Bromance of Three Kingdoms
    Gents, think there’s a false dichotomy. Modern PRC historians/public intellectual/wumao have come to consensus on a two things—

    1. We/PRC took many wrong turns after 1949 我们走过很多弯路
    2. Chiang deserves for much credit for not surrendering

    See my comment re road to Pearl Harbor
    https://www.unz.com/akarlin/woke-mil/#comment-4509462

    Chiang and KMT’s reputation has been rehabilitated in PRC media, e.g. in the movie 800 the ROC flag is prominently displayed. NRA in German uniforms portrayed as heros

    But the book will not be closed on this until the Taiwan Question, that is the last part of the Chinese Civil War is resolved.

    Replies: @antibeast

    Gents, think there’s a false dichotomy. Modern PRC historians/public intellectual/wumao have come to consensus on a two things—

    1. We/PRC took many wrong turns after 1949 我们走过很多弯路
    2. Chiang deserves for much credit for not surrendering

    Agree. The false dichotomy of “pre-1949 = BAD; post-1949 = GOOD” as promoted by the CCP narrative of the so-called ‘century of humiliation’ is merely an obversion of the Western Orientalist view that nothing good came out of the period from the last half century of the Qing Dynasty to the first half century of Republican China.

    The Opium Wars spurred the modernization of the Qing Navy which was nevertheless defeated by the Japanese Navy during the First Sino-Japanese War. What was happening during that period was the tumultuous transition from ancient to modern China, from the Taiping Rebellion to the Xinhai Revolution, from Empire to the Republic, from medieval Feudalism to modern Republicanism, from Manchu to Han rule, all within a century of Rebellions, Revolutions and Republicanism.

    Russia went through a similar process, after its defeat in the Crimean War which spurred the modernization of the Russian Navy which was nevertheless defeated by the Japanese Navy during the Russo-Japanese War. Russia’s modernization started from Tsar Alexander II’s emancipation of Russian serfs to Sergey Witte’s early industrialization of Tsarist Russia which then led to the 1905 Russian Revolution followed by the 1917 Russian Revolution and the subsequent Russian Civil War which led to the founding of the USSR.

    It was the best of times.

    Republican China produced lots of FIRSTS in China: first Chinese airplane; first Chinese steamboat; first Chinese locomotive; first Chinese electric trams; first Chinese electrical grid; first Chinese scientists to receive the Nobel Prize in Physics and Medicine as well as the first Chinese scientists who would later design China’s first atomic bomb, first hydrogen bomb, first nuclear submarine, first jet fighter; first space satellite and first rocket engine after the founding of the PRC.

    It was the worst of times.

    Chiang’s heroic deeds alone against all odds during the Second Sino-Japanese War would have qualified him to be a national hero except for his tragic failure to deal with the KMT gangster-capitalists which would cost him the Chinese Civil War. But his legacy remains the fact that Chiang defeated the warlords, unified the nation, modernized the state, created the central bank, imposed tariffs to protect domestic industries, abrogated extraterritorial privileges, abolished foreign concessions, nationalized defense and other strategic industries and built up the military.

    Republican China represented Chinese modernism in all its variety — from Yuan Shi-kai’s Constitutional Monarchy to Sun Yat-sen’s Republican Democracy, from Chiang Kai-shek’s Technocratic Nationalism to Mao Zedong’s Maoist Communism — which clashed with each other until reaching the final form of Chinese modernism today.

    But the book will not be closed on this until the Taiwan Question, that is the last part of the Chinese Civil War is resolved.

    The book has closed. The winner of the Chinese Civil War is Chiang Kai-shek’s ‘Technocratic Nationalism’ which is the final form of Chinese modernism in Xi’s China today.

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