Reputed to be the last chief designer of the Soviet Union, Pobisk Georgiyevich Kuznetsov was another person who was educated in an extremely unconventional way. He was born in 1924 in Krasnoyarsk in to a family of teachers, Komsomol activists. Back then it was popular to name children in the spirit of a new era, so the new-born boy was called by the first letters of a phrase “Period of October, Builders, Initiators and Supporters of Communism”.
He got research and intellectual training in the labour camps, gratefully accepting science knowledge from the many great scientists who also found themselves behind bars. He was mathematician, philosopher, physicist, chemist, economist, physician and developer of spaceships life supporting systems, and physical magnitudes kinematic system. Author of a world economy system concept based on energy, not on finance. A person who was called the Russian Leonardo da Vinci of the XX century. One can speak about his achievements for a long time, so today we will pitch a story about how he didn’t lose his heart and got a great education despite extremely severe conditions, despite all difficulties, and made a great contribution in the development of his country and all humanity. This story is a good object-lesson for the younger generation.
Start of the path
Pobisk spent his childhood in Siberia. His father, a party officer, was often re-appointed – the family moved from Krasnoyarsk to Novokuznetsk, then to Oleysk, where Georgiy Fedorovich became a secretary of a district committee, then to Novosibirsk. In 1940, after 9th class, Pobisk went to Leningrad, where his grandfather worked as a commandant of the Tauride Palace, and he entered a naval training school.
In 1941, when the Great Patriotic War started, the only thing that young Kuznetsov was afraid was that he wouldn’t get to the front in time and the Germans would be whipped without him. At that time, the age for joining the army was 17, and he was only 16. But he was afraid in vain – he managed to graduate from army school by an intense course and in 1942 was directed as lieutenant to the 33rd army in the 10th guard’s armored brigade.
At the front he was appointed a commander of an armored reconnaissance platoon. He showed gallantry making his crew fight hand-to-hand when his tank was immobilized, but he was seriously injured. With great difficulty doctors saved the hand of the seventeen-year-old lieutenant who finished medical assistant's courses while he was treated at Burdenko Institute of neurosurgery. After a while Pobisk organized a student's scientific society for meaning of life discussions. Somebody found it “anti-communistic” and wrote a denunciation of Kuznetsov.
Education in a GULAG
Pobisk Kuznetsov was sentenced to ten years in camps under article 58 (counterrevolutionary activity). After the sentence of a military court in 1944 he was sent to the 3rd division of Novosibirsk labour camps where he worked at V.P.Tchkalov aircraft factory service. Then Kuznetsov was transferred to the 4th division. There he worked at Novosibirsk radio manufacturing plant, where he gained a reputation and later a qualification as a chemical engineer. At the beginning of 1949, he was transferred as a chemical engineer to Moscow Butyrskaya prison.
The same year he was sent to transit prison "Yenisei" in Krasnoyarsk, and after that to the 2nd division of Noril’lag in Norilsk – one of the most terrible camps in the USSR. In one of his scientific works devoted to energy as a universal economic equivalent, among others, Pobisk Kuznetsov considers such phenomenon as cannibalism – the most primitive way to use cumulated human energy. He notes briefly that it’s not a taboo of humanity as it’s considered to be, and that he was personally acquainted with several cannibals in Norilsk. When prisoners decided to escape, they usually left across the tundra three together, and took the fourth as «meat» that could walk on his feet and moreover, carry useful weight. If they were caught and returned to the camp, they were sent to a special Kalargon division. There, in Kalargon, Pobisk Georgiyevich worked as a medical assistant.
But except for nightmares of northern camp Norilsk, which was well-known for a "bucket shop" that gathered famous scientists and engineers. Pobisk Kuznetsov communicated with many prominent scientists in Norilsk mining and smelting centre camps: with academic Nikolay Fedorovskiy, the founder of Institute of Applied Mineralogy, a friend and a colleague of academic Vernadsky; with Doctor of Chemistry Jacob Fishman, ex-chief of Red Army chemical administration; with Doctor of Chemistry Peter Levin, chief of analytical laboratories, and many others. After release, Pobisk continued to maintain communication with these people. With academic Vasily Parin (they became acquainted in Krasnoyarsk transit camp) they worked together on the creation of life supporting systems in space. And in camp Pobisk he studied eagerly and enthusiastically, and his cellmate teachers were happy to have such pupil.
Those who survived in a Norilsk hell remembered that Kuznetsov was an amazing, unbending person, who not only found the energy to work and improve his knowledge, but also to think constantly about the future. In his book “The Spy sold by the Country” Boris Vitman writes: "Only in communication with Pobisk Kuznetsov the future appeared and constantly waited for us. It seemed like he was the initiator of this appearance. And this was the thing that made him really unique. “To look back is to look in the mud!”, he said, “Look forth– there is the genuine shape of humanity. Here, in the GULAG, there is no future. It must live on in your head. Then it will surely happen. Carry it in your pate – grow it, cherish it, and it will come true!”
Pobisk amazed his fellow victims not only with his intelligence, cheerfulness and goodwill, but also with more “common” things – for example, mastering chess. He taught his friends to play “blindly”, without a board. That made it possible to play the game while prisoners were going on works duty.
In 1954 Kuznetsov was released from camps and received a stay permit and the status of "termless exiled" in Kazachinskoe village that was 200 km from Krasnoyarsk. There he finished tractor drivers courses and had occupational work. He was 30 years old and his official education was incomplete average and based on military college. But he left the prison being a prevalent scientist and researcher, "... not bored by classical education", as he liked to speak, and he had a fantastic reserve of new scientific ideas. In the summer of 1954, living in Kazachinsky, Pobisk wrote a letter about a problem relating to life and sent it to the Moscow Institute of Philosophy of the USSR Academy of Sciences, signed "tractor driver Kuznetsov".
After some months of agricultural working, Pobisk suffered a serious injury. He worked with it during the sowing season, but then was found to be too ill and was sent to Krasnoyarsk. There he got a job as a chemical laboratory assistant in the West Siberian geological administration and soon was promoted to a senior laboratorian, later a head of a project. In February, 1956 he was sent on "Trace elements in Natural Water" courses to Vsegingeo Institute in Moscow. Seizing the opportunity of staying in Moscow, he visited the Institute of philosophy and went with a report about a problem of life which he presented in front of a group of personnel of the institute, who knew him due to the letter sent from Kazachinsky village.
On 5th of March, 1956 Pobisk Kuznetsov was completely rehabilitated due to the setting aside of the judgment by the military court and moved to Novosibirsk. For about a year he worked as chemical engineer, polarography specialist, in the Centre Laboratory of West Siberian geological administration, and in September he was appointed as a senior polarography engineer. In 1958 he presented a thesis on the subject of "Rare lands detachment". At the same time he researched a Ph.D. thesis.
The deputy Director of the institute ordered him to carry out all his claims on first request and introduced him to a Special Forces Chief. It turned out that their acquaintance took place much earlier - Sarychev, the colonel of a state security, was a "godfather" of one of the camps. In due time he swore to leave Kuznetsov to rot in military isolation. When he saw a Red Star Order on Pobisk’s jacket lapel, he exclaimed: "How did you get that? You were imprisoned as a boy!" Pobisk Georgiyevich answered quietly: "No, I was imprisoned as a junior guard’s lieutenant".
That time P.G.Kuznetsov published a number of papers about problems of minerals analysis and the first articles that became the beginning of works connected to life in space problems. In 1958 he first came spoke at a conference in USSR Academy of Sciences philosophy Institute, and in 1959 at All-Union conference about philosophical problems of natural sciences in Moscow.
Research work during the 60-s
In 1961 P.G.Kuznetsov entered the Moscow State Educational Institute, named after Lenin Internal Graduate School on general chemistry chair. He continued publications about chemical elements analysis and detachment. These works allowed him to present a dissertation “Theoretical bases of rare-soils elements detachment and methods of detachment efficiency estimation” to get Ph.D. in chemistry in the institute in 1965.
Most of the time in the educational institute, Kuznetsov paid attention to "humanity and space" problems that were sequentially considered in physical and constructive ways. He became a well-known specialist in this sphere. He was engaged to speak at the Philosophical Encyclopedia that appeared in 1962 with his paper “Problems of life and second law-equation”. He worked out a proposal about “Globus” socio-economic and political prediction program support based on physically comprehended economics, and sent it to scientific and administrative organizations and institutes.
In 1963 he started to get acquainted with ideas and methods of network planning. That time Pobisk started a gradual connection of understanding of humanity as space organ with ideas and methods of target planning. His first publication concerning network planning came out in 1964.
In 1965 a self-supporting network planning sector, headed by P.G.Kuznetsov, was created in a research sector of the institute. In 1967 the sector was transformed to control systems laboratory, and in 1968 - to system development control systems laboratory (LaSURs). All these organizations were carrying out numerous works connected to development and introduction of network planning systems to various branches of national economy, and were doing research and project works for control systems of different classes.
This period of Pobisk Georgiyevich life finished with three events that happened almost at the same time. In 1970 he had a heart attack; he got a governmental award and after this…was arrested on impeachment for theft in a large scale. The reason was other denunciation, certainly not based on facts. Times were already different, so Kuznetsov was set not to a camp, but to Serbskii hospital – a well-known detention centre for people who were certified for political reasons. Many well-known scientists were fighting for his release, they were writing petitions to a general prosecutor and C.P.S.U. Congress. After a year and a half they achieved Kuznetsov's release.
After release, P.G.Kuznetsov was restored in an Educational Institute. He was directed to the applied psycholinguistics sector, and in May, 1971 he became a head of department. In April 1972 the applied psycholinguistics sector was liquidated.
In 1974 Pobisk Georgiyevich moved to the chair of Moscow energy institute as a leading engineer. During that period he worked with Roberto Bartini whom he knew since his time in the GULAG. Together they worked out a problem of geometries and physics plurality. The same time Kuznetsov worked on editing a translation, writing of introduction and epilogue for G.Kron’s book “Network tensorial analysis” together with L.T.Kuzin. It was published in the “Soviet Radio” publishing house in 1978.
The same year P.G.Kuznetsov was employed in the Automatic Equipment Research Institute as a senior research specialist. There he had new subjects: logical and grammatical forms correlation, methods of nonlinear algebraic equations systems solution.
In the 1980’s Pobisk Kuznetsov became a chief designer of «SPUTNIK-SKALAR» big information system. He suggested considering a system of full life support in the closed space of a space station as a life micro-model on our planet. All technical capabilities and vital comfort of cosmonauts depended not on money, but only in spaceships installed power per employee. Evidently these works lead to his long-standing thought discussed in a number of works: life support system of people on Earth must be planned not on assumption of budgets, but on kilowatt-hours produced by humanity.
As against the press that produces any quantity of denomination, such a system would be objective – it is impossible to allocate more energy than it was producing. Switching to energy units of measure could make it possible to speak about leading in an international currency. These ideas about energy equivalents of money Pobisk Georgiyevich offered forty years ago.
Excellent knowledge of mathematics and ability to use it for analysis of many complex problems gave scientific journalists a grounds to call Pobisk Kuznetsov "intellectual person, counting person" - "homo sapiens, homo calculans". And Pobisk himself used to say: "It’s not so hard to count, even machines can do it, and I am a measuring person".
In 1986 P.G.Kuznetsov worked as a chief of informatics in a laboratory in C.P.S.U. Central Committee "Pravda" publishing house and soon became a deputy chief of automatic control systems department of the "Pravda". In 1988 Kuznetsov was appointed a sector chief in data-processing center data origination bureau. He paid much attention to development of "Progress-95" and created a complex program of Moscow and Moscow regional national economy accrual. His thoughts still turned to the social time budget.
In the 1990’s Pobisk Georgiyevich retired, but continued to work, this time in the Institute of Economics and Industrial Engineering Managerial Consulting Center as a chief consultant. From February 1991 he was an executive director of the center. In 1994 Kuznetsov got acquainted with Lyndon LaRouche – it was a casual acquaintance in the Russian Academy of Sciences computing center.
At the same time he worked on a feed system. A random order of feed system development turned out to be very important as it made an idea of "rationing on one million populations". It helped to understand objective regularities of social development, because it made it a possibility to easily express a historical border displacement between free and necessary time.
Pobisk Georgiyevich used to teach a lot, he published two books and he spoke out with his ideas not only as a scientist or a teacher, but also as a public figure – he was the author of letters to world political leaders, the world scientific community, hierarchies of all faiths, and the memorandum for UN message in 1994.
At the end of his life he was elected an academic of the International Informatization Academy to "Social development and public information" sector. Pobisk Georgiyevich Kuznetsov died on 4th of December, 2000.