The first Soviet millionaire Artem Tarasov died

On the 67th year of his life, Artem Tarasov, the legend of the cooperative movement of the late Soviet Union, died. In the late 80's, he became not just the first legal Soviet millionaire, but also a man who showed that one can be rich openly. 
Artem Tarasov became famous throughout the country (then the USSR) in one day. The news that you can be a millionaire, and even a communist, dumbfounded. In 1989, three million rubles in the form of wages amazed the imagination of every Soviet citizen. And it was not the sum. By the figures with six zeros, Soviet people were already accustomed to that time, thanks to a loud "cotton case," during which millions of underground clandestine states of "plunderers of socialist property" were discovered.

The fact itself was struck: to be rich is no longer a crime. This was the event for mass consciousness and subconsciousness, and, perhaps, remained one of the few, but the fundamental merits of Mikhail Gorbachev. After all, the CPSU is the only party at that time, which, throughout all its years of unrestricted rule, pursued private property in the economy, in society, in mentality, suddenly accepted with pleasure the party contribution (3%) from the new millionaire.

Actually, because of these contributions, it became known that Artem Tarasov is a millionaire. After that, there was not a single all-union newspaper left that did not interview him, not a single leading TV channel and radio, who would not talk with him on the air. And he willingly told me how to make a million. And this was the second discovery for the mass consciousness: you can make big money, and earn it yourself, without waiting until one of the bosses raises your salary.

Then the attitude of citizens to cooperators began to change - the first entrepreneurs who could become entrepreneurs thanks to the law "On Cooperation", adopted in 1987. The company of Artem Tarasov was registered at number ten. For a couple of years, the word "speculator" left the folk vocabulary, and somehow people themselves learned the "law of value": the goods cost as much as they are ready to pay for it. Without any courses and lectures, people began to comprehend the logic of business, in which only two things are important: money and business. Make a deal to make money, which again to do business, to again earn money for the next case. With such romantic attitudes, hundreds of thousands, and maybe millions of Soviet people who for several generations could only be hired employees of the state enterprise, rushed to free swimming. Few stayed afloat. The rest could not stand the competition - who with bandits, who with law enforcement bodies, who with oligarchs, who with authority.

Artem Tarasov did not count on this development of domestic business when he, together with other co-operators, established the first business newspaper Kommersant, when he became a deputy twice - the Supreme Soviet of the RSFSR in 1990 and the State Duma in 1993. He did not find reliable ways to protect that enterprise, which now seems romantic. That is probably why I kept away from the business community, in which now there are defenders of different caliber: the RSPP for big business, Delovaya Rossiya for the average, and Opora Rossii for the small. It is not known what Russian entrepreneurship could become if 30 years ago it had gone the way, for a short time Artyom Tarasov became a symbol. But it certainly would be much more popular than now: according to the latest sociological surveys among today's youth, only 2% are ready to do business.