Throughout these ten or twenty years, most communist countries have been trying economic transition to market economy. Now we can observe very different performances in their economic reforms. For instance, China as successful case and Russia as failed case. The way of Russian economic reform is understood to be shock therapy or big bang approach including political revolution. The Chinese approach is gradualism without political revolution. The purpose of this paper lies in analyzing the performance of transition economies through comparative study with Russia, Poland and China, aiming at finding the significant factor to influence the performance of transition economies. First, this paper focuses on the comparative study with Poland and Russia. Both countries adopted big bang approach after political revolution. However, both economies have revealed impressive contrasts in economic performance. Poland has succeeded to stabilize and develop her economy. On the other hand, Russia, going through the very long transformational recession, has not succeeded to develop her economy. Looking at macroeconomic factors, Russian current balance of payment has been sufficient, coming from oil export. On the other, Poland's one has been deficit. The contrasts in economic performance of both countries did not come from political or macroeconomic factor, but mainly came from the performance of financial reform. In the process of economic reform, Poland succeeded to build the reliable networks of commercial bank, but Russia did not succeed it. In Poland, most of national saving has been turning to investment in domestic industrial sectors through banking networks. On the other, huge saving of Russia has been running away to abroad without domestic money flow system. Even the Putin Regime, who has been trying to normalize the Russian system, has not been so eager to build the reliable banking network. China has dramatically succeeded to make economic reform under communist regime. The Chinese way of financial reform is interesting and paradoxical. Poland and Russia separated and privatized the former national banking system. The financial reform of Poland produced the nine national commercial banks, and has gradually privatized them. On the other hand, Russia separated and privatized the national banking system in the same time. The Russian financial reform produced more than two thousands small size banks that has not been trusted by Russian people. China has not been adopting such drastic separation and privatization, but sustaining the national banking system, under which China has been developing her economy. Even though the national commercial banks of China have been suffering the bad asset issue, Chinese people have been trusting the domestic banking system.
The Maskhadov regime relied on Islam to resolve feuds among major leaders in Chechnya after the first Chechen war ended in 1996. Taking advantage of the situation, the Wahhabi expanded their influence in the republic. The Wahhabi were comprised mainly of Arabic political Islamists, who had fought against the Soviets in Afghanistan and come to Chechnya to participate in the first Chechen war. In the summer of 1998, Osama Bin Laden, a new sponsor of the Wahhabi in Chechnya, began to establish a close relationship with anti-Maskhadov leaders (field commanders) attracting them by his abundant funds and his idea of establishing a unified Islamic republic in the north Caucasus. Encouraged by Bin Laden, Chechen armed forces attempted to invade the Russian republic of Dagestan in August 1999. As Moscow lost no time in launching a counter attack, another Chechen war commenced. The Chechen conflict posed a threat to Russia in that it might not have only undermined Russia's territorial integrity, but could have also become a pretext for western countries, including the United States, to meddle in Russia's domestic affairs. Russia tried in vain to persuade Washington that Chechen separatists were disguised international terrorists and that Russia suffered from the same terrorism as the U.S. had during 1998 with American embassy attacks in Africa. The United States continued to attach importance to the human-rights aspects of the Chechen issue. President Vladimir Putin, taking office in 2000, was not able to make the U.S. change its attitude toward the Chechen problem as his predecessor, Boris Yeltsin, had likewise found impossible. In Russia, moreover, some forces, especially the military elite, were opposed to cooperation with the United States. They alleged that none other than the U.S. had played a role in stirring up the situation in the north Caucasus. Thus, there would be no cooperation between the two countries for an anti-terrorist struggle. The situation abruptly changed after the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. U.S.-Russian relations as concerned terrorism seemed to take a 180 degree turnabout. Close analysis of the relationship, however, would show that Russia gave way more in the U.S. direction than vice versa. President Putin allowed Central Asian countries to accept U.S. military presence two weeks after the terrorist attacks, with the Republic of Georgia to follow suit during the spring of 2002 in defiance of the resistance of the political and military elite in Russia. He expected to ease their frustrations by successfully suppressing Chechen armed forces as a result of promoting cooperation between Russia and the United States. He also expected that Washington would admit Russia's war in Chechnya to be a war on terrorism. Such expectations, however, were not met. The political forces in Russia, therefore, having assumed a negative attitude toward cooperation with the U.S., grew more frustrated. President Putin was forced to take steps to soothe their feelings. When he implied that he was ready to dispatch Russian troops to the Pankisskoye Gorge in the Republic of Georgia to eradicate Chechen fighters during September 2002, he intended to assuage the political and military elite which had not welcomed the U.S. military presence in Georgia from its inception.
The purpose of this paper is to discuss a remarkable aspect of contemporary Russian and East European literature after the perestroika: fragmentation as a literary device. The preliminary assumption for this approach is that these areas can be, in spite of their diversity, treated productively as a cultural sphere integrated loosely by their common geopolitical experiences. By “fragmentation”I mean the device of structuring novels (and prose works in general) with fragments, not following any consistent development of plot. Although this device is not new to the 20th-century novel, it became particularly conspicuous in the contemporary literary scene of Russia and Eastern Europe in the 1990s. What runs parallel to it is the collapse of monolithic value judgment system which dominated Socialist countries before the perestroika. A dramatic illustration of this is the split of the Writers Union of the USSR and the consequent irreconcilable conflict among various factions of writers. Karen Stepanian maintains that one of the most characteristic aspects of postmodernism in contemporary Russia is the belief that existence consists of arbitrary fragments. It explains clearly why contemporary writers in Russia and Eastern Europe have developed a tendency toward “fragmentation”. In this paper I discussed the following cases as remarkable examples of this tendency: Galkovskii's The Endless Cul-de-sac (1988), Prigov and Moscow Conceptualism, Kabakov's total installation The Palace of Projects (1995-98), Bitov's The Inevitability of the Unwritten (1998), Erofeev's The Encyclopedia of the Russian Soul (1999), Pavic's Dictionary of the Khazars (1984), and Esterházy's works. However, in Russia there recently appeared a certain tendency toward what might be considered reintegration of fragments. Works with such a tendency are filled with nationalistic sentiment, aiming after the reacquisition of the superpower that Russia used to possess. Pavel Krusanov's The Bite of the Angel (2000) is typical of such a tendency. Some recent Russian films, such as Nikita Mikhalkov''s The Siberian Barber and Aleksei Balabanov's Brother 2, also come in this category. The tendency from fragmentation to reintegration (from the collapse of the superpower to the return to it) can also be seen in the recent political movement of the group “Idushchie vmeste”. In July of 2002, Vladimir Sorokin, the most outstanding representative of Russian postmodernism, and his publisher Ad Marginem were indicted by “Idushchie vmeste” for “circulation of pornography”. This incident shows the ongoing severe conflict in Russia between the postmodern camp and the anti-postmodern camp.
The main object of this paper is to analyze the prevalence of xenophobia (and Neo-nazism as its political expression) in Russian society today and to examine its persuadable causes. Here the action and the ideology of the People's National Party (Narodnaya national'naya partiya) and of its leader Alexander Ivanov-Sukharevskiy are analyzed as an example of the violent fascist party in Russia because the PNP is considered to have a strong relation with the Skinhead movement among the younger generation today. Today xenophobia and racial antipathy is prevalent throughout European society and racist or fascist movement is gaining ground in many European countries. The question is, does Russian fascism have any relationship with this global movement? If so, does it advocate nationalism owing to the effect of globalism? Does fascism equal to a nationalism of Russia? (We must remember that more than 20 million Soviet people were killed in the war against the fascist Germany.) Is the Neo-nazi in today's Russia is really a Nazism? How does it differ from the classical one? The leader of the People's National Party, Alexander Ivanov-Sukharevskiy, came to be known as a politician only after he became a candidate of the Parliament in 1995. He became widely known by his book “My Faith is Rusism!” (Moya vera - rusizm!) in 1997. In this book, Ivanov names his ideology as “Russism”. Although his “Russism” is composed of many ideological fragmentary elements of popular fascism, it can be formulated as a slogan of “Russia for Russians”, which also can be summed up as an appeal for Russians to emancipate Russia from “non-aryans”, “communists”, and “Jews” and to fight against them. Obviously, Ivanov's “Russism” is not so prominent one among other fascism ideologies. But what is the main reason of its success? Why does it so attract young dissatisfied Russians? What is the background of its prosperity? In this author's opinion, the main cause of Ivanov's prosperity does not seem to be “a confusion” of post-Soviet society. Rather, it must be found in “a relative stability” of Russian society today. In a word, Russian society today is not so confused as the post-Soviet society, say, up to 1995. A fairy tale of a post-Soviet millionaire is not plausible today for those whom live in misery. Because, according to Ivanov, “Jews” have already established “Yid resume” in Russia. Then, what is to be done? The answer is quite simple -- “fight against them”. By arguing so, Ivanov published one document which is named “The ABC's of Russian skinheads” (Azbuki rocciiskikh skinheaov) . In this document, Ivanov encourages the dissatisfied young to eliminate alien elements from Russia and to shave their own heads. In this way, Ivanov connects “Russism” as a political movement with skinheads, which was regarded as a sub-culture of the violent young.
In the Dayton Agreement, the engagement of the international community in Bosnia was originally supposed to last only for a year and to come to a close after the elections in 1996, turning over the responsibilities to the new governments. In reality, however, the international community has been continuing, or even intensifying its engagement after the general elections. Why has the international community continued its engagement? As an answer to this question, the present article points out that the elections and the establishment of new governments have not resulted in the autonomous political stability in Bosnia, but actually lead to the political instability. The present paper attempts to demonstrate it by examining the Bosnian case from two viewpoints: (1) stateness problem, and (2) problems with the institutionalization of ethnic power-sharing. The stateness problem occurs when “there are profound differences about the territorial boundaries of the political community's state and profound differences as to who has the right of citizenship in that state.” As Linz and Stepan pointed out, democracy is impossible until the stateness problem is resolved. In Bosnian case, the stateness problem occurred in 1991-1992 when Muslims and Croats wanted the independence of Bosnia, while Serbs opposed it and attempted to secede from Bosnia in order to join the Third Yugoslavia. Even though the Dayton Agreement achieved a compromise, it was far from the resolution of the stateness problem. The differences of the conceptions of the state persisted even after the Dayton Agreement, especially between Bosniaks and Serbs. This is one reason why the elections have not lead to the political stability in Bosnia, since the ethnic parties continued to be elected to the public offices, and they kept putting the stateness problem on the political agenda. Another reason why the elections have not lead to the political stability is related to the institutionalization of the ethnic power-sharing in Bosnia. In Bosnia, the political system based on the consociational model was introduced by the Dayton Agreement, acknowledging the three ethnic groups as “constituent nations” and introducing equal representation and mutual veto system of these nations. However, the introduction of a consociational type of ethnic power-sharing has not lead to the political stability in Bosnia, firstly because it has led to the ineffectiveness of the political system, and secondly because it has given centrifugal incentives to the politicians, inducing them to act as a representative of their respective ethnic group and to take a tough stance against representatives of other ethnic groups. These are two reasons why the elections have not lead to the autonomous political stability in Bosnia. This is why the international community has been continuing its engagement: it has been necessary to secure a minimum stability for Bosnia. In order for Bosnia to achieve the autonomous political stability, the two problems pointed out in the present article must be resolved. It remains to be seen whether - and how -the resolution of these two problems would be possible.
NATO's air campaign against Yugoslavia in 1999 is first ever “humanitarian intervention” launched without prior authorization of UN Security Council. Though the bombing led by US eventually forced Mirocevic to pull out of Kosovo, it incurred fierce debates over its legality and legitimacy, and over its failure in preventing escalation of abuse of human rights during the campaign. Military wisdom of having resorted solely to air bombing was also challenged. After September 11th 2001 we have been witnessing fundamental changes taking place in the way force is used in international relations. The wars in Afghanistan and then in Iraq compels us to ponder upon a grave question. Can and should force replace diplomacy in dealing with regimes considered to be undemocratic and hostile to established norms and regulations? Notwithstanding differences in political background NATO's armed intervention in Kosovo and the US-led war with Sadam's Iraq have one thing in common. In both cases military force was used in massive scale bypassing UN Security Council. Thus UN's role and authority as guardian of international peace and human rights has come to be seriously contested. In this paper the author tried, by re-examining the political and military aspects of NATO's bombing operation, to draw lessons for building a security architecture which is more widely acceptable and yet better workable in the changed international environment. The gist of lessons drawn is as follows; (1) The UN Charter must be revised to give legality to legitimate humanitarian intervention. An independent committee should work out principled guidelines for legitimate intervention. (2) Resort to force is to be considered only after other peaceful means have fully been exhausted. Use of force should be legitimatized solely by prior approval of UN. (3) The UN organs, in particular Security Council, need to be reformed to enable a fair, quick and effective crisis management. (4) Democratization and economic development are key to regional stability. EU's assistance to and future admittance of the whole of Balkan should be closely observed. It is a test case of proving that soft power rather than hard power plays vital a role in establishing a sustainable peace in regions traditionally vulnerable to chauvinistic nationalism and of war-ridden history.
It is well acknowledged that Russian Federation's radical economic transition policy, the so-called ‘shock therapy’, caused deep economic depression. In the early 1990's Russia suffered a catastrophic decline in GDP, industrial production, and living standards, which was accompanied by an acute expansion of income disparity and mass involuntary unemployment. The shock therapy, however, caused a greater damage in the social aspects of Russian people. The magnitude of this shock is graver than the phrase ‘painful change’ suggests, which was an expression often used by Russian political leaders. All aspects of society have been affected, including the health care and condition of the population. Above all, the most significant consequence is the rapid decline in number of population and life expectancy, caused by sharp rise of mortality during the early 1990's. What is the main reason for the significant number of premature deaths in Russia for this period? It is generally believed that there are three possible hypotheses: decline in living standard, degeneration of health care system and destruction of the environment. All these hypotheses seem to be plausible. However, it is also clear that there is some evidence to disprove each one of them. This article tries to find the most plausible cause to explain the rapid rise of mortality in Russia during the early 1990's and to reveal the social background of this phenomenon. Many factors appear to be operating simultaneously, including economic and social instability, high rates of tobacco and alcohol consumption, depression, and deterioration of the health care system. Nevertheless, ‘adaptation syndrome’ from the physical and psychological stresses of shock therapy is the most important cause.
The Republic of Macedonia has a complex ethnic structure. The majority group consists of Macedonians with about two-thirds of national population. Among ethnic minorities, Albanians overwhelmingly dominate over other minority groups, with a share of about a quarter of the population. Although ethnic conflicts had not arisen on the surface since the independence, ethnic relation undoubtedly was a sensitive issue in Macedonian society. In early 2001, the Macedonian Crisis took place. After the armed conflict extending over half a year, an agreement for disarmament was settled between the government and Albanian guerillas in August. In accordance with the agreement, constitutional amendments were approved in the parliament in November. The crisis was over. However, this does not mean that an ethnic problem has been solved in Macedonia. It is considered that various factors that led to the Macedonian Crisis still exist in Macedonian society. One of them is economic inequality between ethnic groups. Although such economic inequality was not a direct cause of the crisis, it must be associated with escalating ethnic conflicts. The purpose of this paper is to characterize Macedonia's ethnic problem, with focus on economic inequality between ethnic groups. This is done by investigating two hypotheses: (A) Distinct economic inequality exists between ethnic groups; and (B) Economic inequality between ethnic groups has widened since the independence. Three variables were chosen to assess these hypotheses: i) per capita income (social product), ii) unemployment rate, and iii) educational attainment. Although it is not an economic variable, education was chosen because it represents the level of human capital that is strongly associated with individual lifetime incomes. The results generally support hypothesis (A) but reject hypothesis (B) . Distinct ethnic disparity was found for all three variables throughout a period of study. However, the widening of ethnic inequality was found only for education. The educational level of Albanians, on average, has declined markedly after the independence. On the contrary, a gap in unemployment rate between Macedonians and Albanians has narrowed in late 1990s. Also, the widening of ethnic inequality in per capita income was not observed during the period 1986-1995. There are two remarks regarding these results. First, the fall in the education level of Albanians may be attributed to their own decisions. Throughout the period of transition, unemployment rates were consistently high, reaching above 30%. The rates were especially high for young adults, reaching more than 50%. Under such circumstances, it may be a rational decision to start working in the informal sector and accumulate business experiences that would be more effective than pursuing formal education in order to establish their careers in an emerging market economy. This attitude is considered to be stronger for Albanians because working in the informal sector has been common in Albanian society since the Yugoslav era. Second, hypothesis (B) for per capita income was generally rejected; however, when the year 1989 was used as a reference year under socialist regime, it could not be rejected. This implies that if Albanians viewed 1989 as a representative year before the independence, they would likely feel that their living standards declined both in absolute and relative terms compared with those of Macedonians during the period of transition.
The thesis based on the so-called Harvard SCP Theory deals with the mechanism and the implication of the development of the regulatory reform in the natural gas industry in the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland by showing how the market structure of the industry has been reformed and how the performances in terms of social welfare have been improved. Moreover, the thesis shows the reform marks an epoch-making achievement in that it has given the industry new responsibility to support international society and that the regulatory policy has been elaborated from the stage of deregulation and pro-privatization to the more comprehensive stage of pro-competitive policy by adopting the vertical separation of the industry as well as by ensuring reliable supply and fare competition in the transitional economies.
This paper aims to analyze the development of parliamentary systems in Ukraine. Since independence, Ukraine held parliamentary elections three times (1994, 1998, 2002) . There are many articles which analyzed these elections. Their approaches were characterized by two. First of all, they were using the left-right ideology scale to analyze them. For instance, parliamentary camps would be classified by this scale. The Communist party of Ukraine was located on the left edge, on the other hand Ukraine nationalists parties were located on the opposite side. Secondly, the political party was their central analysis unit in these studies. However, these approaches have two problems. First, ideology issues are not the central matter of current political arena. It is insignificant to use this scale to classify today's the political parties. Second, political parties are less important actors during the elections and the session of the parliament. As for elections, independent candidates and the electoral blocks are dominant. Also, parliamentary procedures are ran by the fractions, which are the compositions of independents, parties and blocks. There is little coincidence between the three. This is especially for independents who are less ideologized and frequently change their belongings. Once those deputies form their own parties or fractions, few of them are alive by the time of the next elections. Third, these less ideologized deputies, called “Centrist, ” become more important within the current political arena. We should consider these forces as a main unit of our research. The Centrists begin their career as a high rank bureaucrat or directors of large state industries. Since each of them individually retained certain political resources, they did not form any organization such as political party. The rise of the Super-Presidentilaism and the large scale economic reform as well as the introduction of proportional representation, all had an impact on these Centrists. New counter-elites emerged from the privatization and diversification of economic interests, confront old elites. This drove old and new elites to organize each political structure to compete against each other. Also, they had a interest to support the president not to revive old communist regime. Last year's elections proved the above mentioned tendency. The ideologized parties lost their momentum. On the other hand, the Centrists' parties gained more seats than the previous elections. Furthermore, we observed that the Centrists' split into pro and anti presidential camps within the parliament. This will be the strong evidence of how Ukrainian parliament works well.
In Russia, “fundamentalism” in the Russian Orthodox Church has been on the rise since the early 1990's. “Russian Orthodox Fundamentalists” stand for restoration of autocracy, restriction against the Jews and the confessions other than the Orthodox one, the imperial principle of state structure, the Russian Orthodox Church status as the state church, for complete rejection of the concepts of democracy and human rights (in particular, as concerns the freedom of conscience), opposition to any forms of Western influence within the country and struggle against it beyond its borders, and compulsory imposition of “Orthodox values” in every-day life, culture and even economy. Their worldview is based on extremely mythologized notions about the pre-revolutionary Orthodox monarchy. Inside the Russian Orthodox Church Moscow Patriarchate, Metropolitan of Saint Petersburg and Ladoga Ioann, a person of a greatest authority among the conservatives, prodused the most convincing arguments in favor of a “fundamentalist” position. Many Orthodox “fundamentalist” leaders including an activist Konstantin Dushenov, Editor-in-Chief of “Orthodox Rus” newspaper, have followed Ioann. Some church bishops and the clergy of the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad and of the True Orthodox Church have represented “fundamentalist” circles in these churches. A number of Orthodox brotherhoods, such as the Union of Orthodox Brotherhoods, the Christian Regeneration Union, the Union of Orthodox Citizens, ideologically hold extremely nationalist positions. Same as the similar extra-Church groups, such brotherhoods are not supported by the bishops, but it is impossible to expel anybody from the Church for political views and the nationalist brotherhoods continue working actively. Moreover, right-wing extremist organizations, such as “Pamyat”, “Black Hundred”, “Russian National Unity” actively cooperate in many regions with Russian Orthodox Church clerics. These persons and organizations can be classified into “fundamentalism” and “quasi-fundamentalism” for the moment. The clerics in the Russian Orthodox Church Moscow Patriarchate, the Russian Orthodox church Abroad, the True Orthodox Church are the former. The Union of Orthodox Brotherhoods, the Christian Regeneration Union are included in it. The Union of Orthodox Citizens and the right-wing extremist organizations are the latter. “Russian Orthodox Fundamentalists” fight back to defend their national and religious identity and worldview, fight with fundamentals of “Autocracy, Orthodoxy, Nationality”, and fight against their enemy. such as Western Europe, globalization under the name of God. “Russian Orthodox Fundamentalism” is similar to Russian Right-wing Extremism, and both of them are violent and aren't tolerant. “Russian Orthodox Fndamentalists” base their core identity on religion and they try to construct structual violence. Russian Right-wing Extremists emphasise race, nationality, state in their identity and they resort to physical violence. In addition, Russian New Right-wing Extremism borrow various ideologies othar than Russian Orthodox Christianity. In 2002, conflict between the Russian Orthodox Church and the Roman Catholic Church has come to the surface. It seems that since the early 1990's the unstable balance between “fundamentalists” and the Patriarchate has been gradually shifting in favor of “fundamentalists”. It is impossible to ignore the influence of “Russian Orthodox Fundamentalists” at the aspects of politics, society, and public opinion in Russia today.
This article reviews the relations between the OSCE (Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe) and Belarus, which has become very tense in recent years. Since joining the OSCE in 1992 as a newly independent state, Belarus soon began showing signs of authoritarianism. In November 1996, President Alexander Lukashenko took steps to strengthen his control over the country by proposing a new constitution that would broaden his authority, extend his term in office from five years to seven years, and create a bicameral National Assembly in the place of the Chamber of Representatives (Supreme Soviet) -- a reversion, as the opposition would call it, to the Soviet era. The OSCE, which had been closely involved with democratization process in Europe, responded in 1998 by sending a mission, the AMG (Advisory and Monitoring Group in Belarus) . After making little progress, it was replaced by the even more powerless OOM (OSCE Office in Minsk) in 2003, as a result of the Belarus government's resistance. This setback by the OSCE coincided with the growing presence in Belarus of the ACEEEO (Association of Central and Eastern European Election Officials), an election-monitoring body which has disagreed with the OSCE on quite a few issues. Meanwhile, it should be noted that Belarus, despite its high degree of political stability and low security risk, still displays significant repression of human rights: The correlation between traditional diplomatic relations and human rights (or democratization) does not appear to hold true in Belarus. In light of this peculiarity, and given the recent weakening of its mission, the OSCE democratization regime in Belarus will continue to suffer in the foreseeable future.
In 1998, Hungary started a pension reform, which involved partial privatisation of the system and partial introduction of the fully funded (FF) scheme. The reform aimed to improve the financial sustainability, the incentive structure, and the transparency of the system. It also aimed to achieve the system's fairness by separating the principles of“social solidarity”and“social insurance”. But, after the FIDESZ-led government came to power, the pension reform was not carried out as scheduled. The FIDESZ-led government made some institutional changes that partially reversed the 1998-reform. This article examines the original reform plan and institutional changes under the FIDESZ-led government from three viewpoints: 1) financial sustainability of the pension system; 2) incentive structure and the system's transparency; and 3) the system's fairness. We also evaluate pension reforms carried out since mid-1990s in relation to the processes of system transformation and EU accession. By investigating institutional changes in detail, we show the 1998 pension reform was inadequate to its three purposes mentioned above, because it incorporated measures softening the shocks expected from the original reform plan. Although there is no doubt that the 1998 pension reform was a drastic one, actors had to make numerous compromises during in the agreement formation process and the legislation process. Consequently, the system maintained a larger scale of redistribution than originally proposed by the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Welfare and the PIF (Pension Insurance Fund) self-government. We also show that the changes made by the FIDESZ-led government resulted not from differences in thinking about pension systems but from populist politics that was imposed heavier burden on both contributors and pensioners. We conclude by pointing out there are many unsolved problems, opacities and uncertainties regarding the future course of Hungary's pension system reform.