While Russian students kill themselves in despair, the Soviet government designs prodigious schemes for restoring the prosperity and public welfare that its economic hysteria has destroyed. With the utmost enthusiasm, Lenine recently proposed the electrification of the whole gigantic country. The plan is now to build a huge fleet of airships, for a multitude of purposes. In view of the "bad state of the highways and railway lines", the airships could be used advantageously for postal express and passenger service; also "to combat epidemics, to help the weather man, to aid fishing industries, and form closer contact with remote villages".
As usual, the Communist leaders are attempting to build a pyramid from the top down. Instead of gradually and thoroughly developing the resources of the nation and the intelligence of the people to a point where modern inventions could be usefully applied, they intend to thrust electricity and airplanes on peasants who are terrified by a rumored collision with Jupiter. And instead of increasing their nucleus of educated men by putting their universities on a sound financial basis, they seek to spread a thin coating of information over the masses by means of isolated lectures. Meanwhile, conditions in the universities have resulted in a student suicide wave which may easily rob future Russia of the few trained men who might otherwise be available.
In this respect, as in everything else except making war, the present Russian government has shown itself incapable of grasping the fundamentals. Not only does it believe that Rome was built in a day, but the Soviet thinks that the millions of Russia, unleavened by any considerable number of really enlightened people, can at once produce and operate vast flocks of airplanes, dynamos, anything, in fact that might catch the fancy of her rulers. Until Lenine and his "comrades" realize that the way to progress is slow and laborious, they will have difficulty in persuading the rest of the world that they are fit leaders for Russia.