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The Sarmatian Review Index

January 2005

Volume XXV, No. 1

The press in Europe in 1903

Number of serial publications in Polish in 1903: over 600, of which 570 are known by title.

Number of serial publications in German in 1903: about 9,000.

Number of serial publications in French, English, and Czech, respectively, in 1903: under 7,000; about 30,000; 914.

Source: Jan Kucharzewski, Czasopiśmiennictwo polskie wieku XIX w Królestwie, na Litwie i Rusi oraz na emigracyi (Warsaw-Kraków: Gebethner and Wolff, 1911), pp. 120-21.

Readership of Fyodor Dostoevsky’s journal in Russia of his day

Number of subscriptions to Dostoevsky’s serial Diary of a Writer in the 1870s: 900.

Source: Joseph Frank, Dostoevsky: The Mantle of the Prophet, 1871-1881 (Princeton, NJ: Princeton Univ. Press, 2002).

Higher education in contemporary Poland

Number of freshman students admitted to the public and private institutions of higher learning in Poland in Fall 2004: 315,000 and 220,000, respectively, for a total of 535,000.

Percentage increase in admissions in private institutions: 130 percent as compared to 2003.

Source: Rzeczpospolita, 17 June 2004.

Ut unum sint

Percentage of Russians who do not favor reuniting the Orthodox Church with the Catholic Church: 69 percent.

Percentage of those who favor reunification: 17 percent (the poll did not say how the remaining 14 percent voted).

Categories of people most opposed to reunification: women, those with above average incomes, and those with higher education.

Source: ROMIR poll of 2,000 Russians, as reported by UPI, 15 July 2004.

Dangers of the Ukrainian coal mines

Number of miners killed in accidents in the Ukrainian coal mines each year: 300 to 400.

Number of coal mines in Ukraine: 220.

World Bank recommendations concerning 50 percent of these mines: it would be cheaper for Ukraine to close them down and import coal than to keep them in operation without overhauling the inadequate Soviet-style worker security systems.

Source: UPI, 20 July 2004.

Polish deaths in Iraq

Number of Polish soldiers and nonmilitary personnel killed in Iraq between 1 January and 13 September 2004: 17.

Source: Rzeczpospolita, 13 September 2004.

Biometric passports a wave of the future?

Date when the Swiss government will make available to its citizens, on an optional basis, the new biometric passports containing digital fingerprints and a digital picture: end of 2005.

Date when the United States will require biometric identifiers for U.S. entry without a visa: after 2005.

Number of Swiss citizens who travel to the United States each year: 200,000 (out of the total population of 7.4 million)

Source: Swiss news agency Swissworld, as reported by UPI, 15 September 2004.

Russian poll on civil liberties

Percentage of Russians who favor more random identity checks by police to fight terrorism: 82 percent.

Source: A national poll reported by the Novosti news agency on 9 November 2004, as reported by UPI on the same day.

The world’s coldest cities with more than one million people in 2001

Novosibirsk, Omsk, Yekaterinburg, Chelyabinsk, Perm, Samara, Ufa, Kazan, Nizhnii Novgorod, Ottawa (nine out of ten are in Russia).

Economic consequences of this situation: all except Ottawa, Canada, are a drain on the economy and are unsustainable in the market economy in the long run.

Source: Fiona Hill and Clifford G. Gaddy, The Siberian Curse: How Communist Planners Left Russia Out in the Cold (Washington, DC: Brookings Institution Press, 2003), p. 229.

Clothing companies and the Polish question

Expiration date of an international agreement on apparel quotas: 31 December 2004.

Anticipated consequences for the clothing industry in smaller countries such as Poland: an intensification of international competition and a necessity to invent new strategies to maintain contracts with international clothing companies.

Strategies already adopted by countries such as China to prepare for the change: “supply-side cities,” or vast industrial campuses that include factory, dormitories for thousands of workers, hotels, coffee shops, gyms, and other facilities.

Source: Gabriel Kahn, “A New Strategy for Apparel,” Wall Street Journal Europe, 13-15 August 2004.

World Trade Figures

Leading exporters in world merchandise in 2002, in descending order: EU (19 percent share of world merchandise exports), US (14 percent), Japan (8.4 percent), China (6.6 percent), Canada (5.1 percent).

Leading importers in world merchandise trade in 2002: US (23.2 percent of world imports), EU (18 percent), Japan (6.5 percent), China (5.7 percent), Canada (4.4 percent).

The fastest-growing product group in world trade: manufactured goods, with agricultural and mining products trailing behind.

WTO accords reached in July-August 2004: rich countries will eliminate all agricultural export subsidies by a date to be fixed. They will also gradually reduce aid to farmers.

Source: Guy de Jonquieres, “Trade deal marks end to talks about talks but the real negotiations lie ahead,” Financial Times, 2 August 2004.

Polish losses in the 1863 uprising

Number of Polish insurgents executed by the Russians after the uprising failed: 669.

Number of Polish insurgents exiled to Siberia to forced labor: 38,000.

Number of Polish insurgents sentenced to serve in the ranks of Russian punitive regiments: 7,000.

Source: Adam Zamoyski, Holy Madness: Romantics, Patriots and Revolutionaries, 1776-1871 (1999), p. 422.

Polish farmers and the European Union

Percentage of Polish farmers who approve of Poland’s accession to the European Union: 51 percent.

Percentage of Polish farmers who believe that they personally profited from joining the EU: 25 percent.

Percentage of those who deny that the admission to EU has already proved advantageous to them personally: 68 percent.

Intended spending of farm subsidies to which some farmers are now entitled: investment in the means of production (49 percent), investment in buildings and renovation of buildings (20 percent), investment in machinery (20 percent).

Source: Barbara Fedyszak-Radziejowska, “Wieś się z Unią integruje,” Rzeczpospolita, 13 November 2004.

Catholic monasteries and convents in Poland

Number of men and women religious in Poland in 2001: 39,000, of whom 25,000 are women.

Source: Krystyna Dębowska, "Zycie konsekrowane, jego istota i aktualna sytuacja w Polsce,” Leksykon zakonów w Polsce edited by Bogumił Łoziński, 2d ed. (Warsaw: Katolicka Agencja Informacyjna, 2002), p. 18.

Standard of living in Poland in 2004 and 1989

In 1989: four times lower than in Germany.

In 2004: two times lower than in Germany.

Poland’s greatest economic problem: only slightly over 50 percent of people in productive years are wage-earning employees, while 13 percent of people in productive years receive disability payments.

Source: EBRD analysis, as reported by Lena Białkowska in Donosy, no. 3857, 15 November 2004.

Brother, can you spare a trillion?

Net worth of Jeffrey Greenberg, his father Maurice Greenberg, and brother Evan Greenberg: more thatn 700 billion dollars.

Companies which the three Greenbergs control: insurance giant Marsh & McLennan Cos; American International Group (the largest U.S. insurer); and ACE, the Bermuda-based insurer.

Reason why this family got into the news spotlight: New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer’s probe into price fixing and kickbacks in the insurance industry, a lawsuit in which the three Greenbergs are implicated.

Source: Joseph Giannone and Aleksandrs Rozens of Reuters, “Probe puts spotlight on family,” Houston Chronicle, 16 October 2004.


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