[Image Description: Tag reading “yes its true Moscow ran out of vodka during the victory celebration of WWII”]
The AO3 Tag of the Day is: Please ask me about the Russian vodka ban in 1914?
What was the Russian Vodka Ban in 1914?
Ok, time to nerd. So Russians like vodka, ok? I don’t think this is a big revelation to anyone, but I feel like I should make it clear. Vodka is…important…in Russia.So, in 1904, Russia was preparing to go fight a war with Japan. Because, you know, sometimes you’re trying to retain control of a warm-water port and also there’s racism and then you need to have a war about it. So the Tsar orders his army to mobilize to go fight Japan, only there’s a problem: instead of mobilizing in an organized manner, soldiers are buying vodka and getting drunk out of their minds and then, like, not showing up for the war. Which, I mean, valid. I might get drunk and not show up if someone told me I had to go fight a war, and I don’t even drink. But it was a problem, and it actually really messed up Russia’s mobilization plans.So 1914 rolls around, and the Russians are going to go to war with Austria. Because, you know, sometimes international tensions in a multipolar situation get really heightened and then some asshole in an ugly uniform gets shot and then you need to have a war about it. So the Tsar orders his army to mobilize to go fight Austria, and this time, he has a plan. Vodka will not defeat him! He bans the sale of vodka in Russia. All of it. First for the duration of the mobilization period, and then for the duration of the war. Great idea, right?Only there’s a problem. The reason the Tsar can just stop all vodka sales with a snap of his fingers is that the Tsar sells all the vodka. Vodka is a state monopoly. You literally can’t get vodka from anyone but the government. Which makes it very easy to ban, but, well….Remember how I said Russians really like vodka? I’m just gonna say it again: Russians really like vodka. Really, really like it. So it makes sense that, if you’re a government with chronic money problems, you might create a state monopoly on vodka sales in order to raise some cash. You might raise a lot of cash. A huge fucking ton of cash. Literally one third of the Russian government’s revenue came from selling vodka. One fucking third.Here’s another thing: Wars? They cost money. A lot of it. And if you’re the Russian state in, say, 1914, and you’re about to kick off WWI, it might behoove you to not literally eliminate a third of your fucking revenue with a snap of your fingers! I don’t think that’s such a hard idea to wrap your head around, but what the fuck do I know. But anyway, Russia had chronic money problems throughout the war and couldn’t outfit their soldiers or feed their people or any of that shit. Also there was a revolution and communism and such-like. The end.Anyway, this story has several morals and they are as follows:Getting drunk and not showing up for wars is a valid life choiceConsidering the possible effects of your policies before implementing them is important please do thatProhibition causes communism and therefore we should all buy as much alcohol as we can because we love god and america
found @ 35 likes ON 2019-11-26 00:35:03 BY ME.ME