(In the Wall Street Journal, February 6, 1989:) If China is a college classroom on capitalism, the Soviet Union remains a kindergarten. The point is brought home by the story told by Romano Prodi, chairman of IRI, the giant conglomerate of Italian state-owned companies, who recently returned from a visit with Mr. Gorbachev. Mr. Prodi was describing to the general secretary how Italian private companies operate more efficiently than state-run enterprises. Mr. Gorbachev asked why that is so. The Italian industrialist replied with a question: "Why does the hare, small and weak, consistently outrun the hound?" The Soviet leader was puzzled. "It is because the hare works for himself while the hound works for masters," explained Mr. Prodi. Mr. Gorbachev laughed appreciatively. He said he would tell it to the Politburo.
(From the "Rest" of RHF)