Voices from Russia

Sunday, 26 September 2010

How Much Does Happiness Cost?

Filed under: economy,EU,moral issues,politics,Russian,USA — 01varvara @ 00.00

They say that happiness doesn’t depend upon money. Some say that there is no such thing as not enough money. However, it turns out that 25 percent of Russians, or one in every four, would be happy if they received a salary ranging from 50,000 to 100,000 roubles (1,624-3,248 USD 1,206-2,412 Euros 1,026-2,052 UK Pounds) per month. Many Russians polled said, “That’s what one needs for a normal life”. In comparison, “happiness” costs Americans twice as much. According to a poll conducted by Bigness.ru amongst its readers, most Russians think that money is necessary to achieve happiness. About 43 percent are certain that one can’t have happiness without money. One in four respondents (25 percent), on the contrary, is certain that money doesn’t buy happiness. Another 31 percent believe that you have to judge each case “on its own merits”.

One of Russia’s main employment websites, Superjob.ru, conducted a similar poll to find out how much money a Russian would need to feel satisfied with their lives. It showed that 25 percent of those polled would be happy with a salary from 50,000 to 100,000 roubles a month, “as this would suffice to pay for the day-to-day expenses of normal life”. Sixteen percent of the respondents said that they would be very comfortable making from 100,000 to 150,000 roubles (3,248-4,872 USD 2,412-3,618 Euros 2,052-3,078 UK Pounds) per month. “This income would allow me to feel comfortable. However, happiness isn’t about money, nor is it about how much money you have”.

Twelve percent of respondents were more modest in their requirements; they would only need from 30,000 to 50,000 roubles (975-1,624 USD 724-1,206 Euros 616-1,026 UK Pounds) a month to be satisfied. “You could make all the money in the world, but if you ruin your health, even if you make millions, it won’t save you”, they thought. The same number of survey respondents (12 percent) said that they would need 500,000 roubles (16,240 USD 12,060 Euros 10,260 UK Pounds) a month to be completely happy. “It sounds banal, but there is never enough money, and one always wants more”. There was a discernable difference between men and women in this (16 percent and 9 percent, respectively). One in every ten Russians (10 percent) is certain that they would need from 150,000 to 200,000 roubles (4,872-6,496 USD 3,618-4,824 Euros 3,078-4,104 UK Pounds) a month “to make nearly all of their dreams come true”. Six percent said they would need 200,000 to 300,000 roubles (6,496-9,744 USD 4,824-7,236 Euros 4,104-6,156 UK Pounds) a month, “The more, the better”.

Four percent named 300,000 to 500,000 roubles (9,744-16,240 USD 7,236-12,060 Euros 6,156-10,260 UK Pounds) a month as their goal, “but that’s only a dream”. Another 4 percent of those polled said that they would be happy with 30,000 roubles (975 USD 724 Euros 616 UK Pounds) a month. “I don’t need much… the more you get, the more you want”. “The more a person earns, the less they look human”. Women are twice as likely as men are to believe that modest earnings don’t prevent happiness (6 percent vs 3 percent). It’s interesting to note that the respondents who shared this point of view didn’t earn more than 20,000 roubles (650 USD 483 Euros 411 UK Pounds) per month; there were none with this attitude in higher-income brackets. Seven percent of respondents said, “Money can’t give you happiness, but it can give you freedom of choice and action. There’s no specific amount which could give me that”. “There is never enough money, but it doesn’t give you happiness, anyway”. “It doesn’t matter how much money I have, I’m happy, anyway”.

In comparison, an average American needs twice as much to be happy, 75,000 dollars (2.31 million Roubles 55,696 Euros 47,414 UK Pounds) per year. Researchers said that lower-income Americans tend to experience less happiness in their everyday life; according to them, the ability to be happy rises commensurately with income. Interestingly, researchers found that happiness grew only up to the income level of 75,000 dollars per annum. If income grew beyond this point, certainly, it made life easier, and increased an overall sense of satisfaction, but emotional satisfaction with life began to depend on other factors, such as personality differences or incidents that might occur to them. By the way, according to opinion polls conducted by Gallup, the happiest people in the world live in Denmark, followed by Finland, Norway, Sweden, and the Netherlands. If we compare this data with a rating of cities with the highest per capita income, it turns out that the idea that “money doesn’t buy happiness” is still fixed in people’s minds.

16 September 2010

Yekaterina Yevstigneyeva




26 September 2010. A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words: Let it be “America the Beautiful” Yet Again… Defeat the Tea Party in November!

Filed under: politics,USA — 01varvara @ 00.00

Either we’re all Americans together… or none of us have the right to call ourselves Americans! Let both the Cordoba Centre and St Nick’s be built… it’s the American thing to do!





Yes, sir… the Tea Party wraps itself up in the flag… they dip it in the blood of foreign workers brutalised by the bully boys of Third World tyrannies hosting “outsourced” plants and in the blood of Muslim children killed by USAF remote control UAVs.



Health  care for the population costs far less than a year’s worth of a foreign war… any questions?





Don’t forget the secret CIA torture centres in Lithuania, Romania, and the Ukraine… the Tea Party supports such, and would do so, again. Do vote accordingly!


The Sectarians  (Evangelicals/Mormons/Pentecostalists) support the war machine… they profit from it, too. Why are good Christian  (Catholic/Orthodox/Reformation Protestant) people not speaking up against such slimers?




Let labour and capital stand united… don’t let the Leona Helmsleys amongst the rich hijack America. Our sweat has earned us a right to the “American Dream”… it’s not just for the affluent effluent in the ‘burbs.


Elect the Tea Party… see almost every federal social welfare programme abolished to line the pockets of the rich… that’s what they want. After all, you’re not “grateful” or “patriotic”…




Here’s something for you old-line ethnic Orthodox out there… go to your parish cemetery and look at the headstones of our forbears. One of the things that you’ll notice is that many of them have union symbols on them. Yep… Russian Orthodox people were in the forefront of the fight to unionise the mines and mills in this country. We wuz RADICALS… many of our guys were WOBBLIES. We FOUGHT, and we fought HARD. It’s why Orthodox people in the US and Canada were able to pull themselves up economically.

If you vote for the Tea Party, you spit on our ancestors’ graves… it’s quite that simple. You vote for a movement that wants to undo everything that our Orthodox forbears fought for, and WON! Don’t forget… we paid the price for the industrialisation of the USA and Canada with our BLOOD.

Don’t vote for the Tea Party in November… think of what your ancestors would say!


Ray Velencia Skips Town…

Filed under: Christian,Orthodox life,USA — 01varvara @ 00.00

Looks like Ray took a powder… he wasn’t at liturgy today. Well… good riddance to bad rubbish, I say. G’bye! Don’t come back soon! Whew! The air smells cleaner already!


Those of you who have been reading my site for some time know of the legal case concerning Kristi Koumentakos and Ray Velencia, a priest of the OCA. Yes, Smilin’ Ray publicised confidential details of his counselling of Ms Koumentakos. That’s not only immoral, being a breach of the expected secrecy of confession/counselling, it’s illegal, being a contravention of the principle of pastoral confidentiality. Well, there’s more news on this one, kiddies.

Ray Velencia has skipped town. I know NOTHING beyond that. Of course, it has caused an uproar, which I have heard from several sources. They can say what they will… it doesn’t make the OCA stalwarts look good. In fact, if this doesn’t show to you that there is EVIL in the higher echelons of the OCA, nothing shall. Jonas Paffhausen shall do NOTHING. Garklavs shall do NOTHING. Kishkovsky shall do NOTHING. Reardon will wring his hands, yet again, bootlessly. Rod Dreher shall say NOTHING… hey, Rod! You were loud n’ proud in attacking the poor papists… where are you NOW?

Most of all, Mark Stokoe will do NOTHING… after all, he gained his seat on the Metropolitan Council, didn’t he? I know what Our Lord said:

Woe to those who call good evil, and evil good.

‘Nuff said.

Barbara-Marie Drezhlo

Sunday 26 September 2010

Albany NY

Fr Vsevolod Chaplin Urged Politicians to Set a Worthy Example Thorough Moral Actions

Fr Vsevolod Chaplin (1968- ), perhaps, the closest personal confidant of His Nibs… one of the most powerful men in the Church, much more so than the Boy Blunder (take note, SVS, OCA, and Stokoe).


The Church shouldn’t exclusively support one or another political doctrine…

Politicians should set an example through moral actions, according to Archpriest Vsevolod Chaplin, the head of the MP Synodal Department for Church and Society. “Today, people say that politics is a dirty business, that it’s a game played by cheats. In fact, if a person wants to improve the lives of the people and the state, he can apply his talents and knowledge in politics, too”, he said on Friday, responding to questions from the students at the North-Eastern Federal University in Yakutsk. Moreover, in his opinion, “One doesn’t have to follow a path of compromise with this very evil and dirty business; alas, it’s too often present in our political life today; one should set a worthy example through moral actions in politics, too. To paraphrase St Seraphim of Sarov, if man saves himself through showing a good example, then, because others will follow him, thousands and thousands will be saved”. Fr Vsevolod noted, “Some people think that the present Russian religious revival came from the fact that the Prime Minister, President, and others in state leadership decreed it. Rather, they came to the Faith because they saw other people come to it, not the other way round. Faith comes from the people; you can’t plant it from the top down”. When asked to comment on a book by a journalist, he said, “The Church receives many projects proposing changes in the social structure. We note their proposals with interest, they should be discussed publicly, but the Church shouldn’t exclusively support one or another political doctrine”.

24 September 2010



Editor’s Note:

Interfax gets a Fr Alvian Managed News Award on this one… it’s not on the English side at all. It’s short, it’s to the point, and it makes an important distinction. There’s no excuse… shame on you Interfax! That’s on the level of JP, Matusiak, SVS, and New Skete… scurvy company, indeed.

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