Saturday, January 9, 2021

Tips For Doing Business In Totalitarian Countries

 As this will be an ongoing series I'll keep this introduction brief..

Your overarching goal must be to achieve invisibility. Be the grey man/woman. As Chairman Mao said:

"The guerrilla must move amongst the people as a fish swims in the sea"

One of the easiest things to do, if you are a citizen, is join the party. You don't have to be ostentatious about it, just join. And as we learned studying the Nazis, an earlier number was better than a later one.

As noted in the introduction to "“A Communist Doesn’t Whine — He Shows His Teeth” Communists In Weimar Germany": 

One of the rules of politics is "if your country goes communist you want to be as far up the apparatchik totem pole as you can get."
Preferably a commissar or above, putting you and yours closer to the commissary.

In a socialist paradise all pigs are equal but Hugo Chavez's daughter is a billionaire. 
(actually $4.2 billion)

And whether or not you can join the party, get a political fixer. The cost is sometimes onerous but remember they can keep you out of trouble and open doors, two very important considerations.
Plus from a pragmatic point of view, any expense that you can meet is not a problem, just a cost of doing business

As to where you might find opportunity, if your country goes full Weimar with the money printing, pull your beach chair up to a spot beside the fire hose and let the splashes of the sweet, sweet trillions refresh you.

Also smuggling is always a good choice, command-and-control economies tend to create huge distortions in supply/demand dynamics.

Much more to come including case studies from the former East Bloc and the pros and cons of joining the nomenklatura.