Voices from Russia

Tuesday, 21 December 2010

Patriarch Kirill is Troubled about the Bias Against Christianity in Europe

Meeting of Patriarch Kirill Gundyaev (1946- ) of Moscow and all the Russias with Latvian President Valdis Zatlers (1955- ). This was NOT a warm meeting… but do note the presence of the Wonder sitting next to KMG (is he back in semi-favour, again?). The LOC (MP) is an integral part of the MP… why would he be there (it’s an intramural MP affair for the Church)? This was at the Patriarchal working residence in Chisty Pereulok in Moscow… that means that this was official, but not cordial (quite unlike KMG’s very friendly meeting with the Cuban doctors and ambassador)… at least, no one spoke of “frank exchanges” (diplomatese for “Texas Steel Cage Death Match”). Something’s up… but what?

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His Holiness encouraged the Latvian authorities to help the Church protect its property rights, to forestall any encroachment on them by schismatical groups…

Patriarch Kirill Gundyaev of Moscow and all the Russias is concerned that there are elements that are attempting to remove religious influences and values from the public sphere in Europe. “In speaking about Europe in general, and the EU in particular, I would like to express my concern regarding the state of affairs concerning the exercise of the Christian faith in the public sphere”, His Holiness said at a meeting with Latvian President Valdis Zatlers in Moscow on Monday. He pointed up that in some EU countries “people face impediments in the open expression of their religious beliefs in the course of their social and professional lives”.

His Holiness especially brought to mind “such unpleasant incidents” as the court case against the presence of crucifixes in the classrooms of Italian schools. “Whenever we see attempts to exclude religious symbolism from the public space, it concerns us greatly”, Patriarch Kirill said. He reminded us that the Soviet Union “removed the crosses from the churches, so, we know very well know the consequences of state opposition to religious symbolism. Today, it’s very important, what with references to human rights, religious freedom, and multiculturalism, that Western societies don’t make attempts to exclude visible religious symbolism from public life”. In his opinion, it’s necessary that religious communities “have the opportunity to participate actively in public life, and that no one, including Christians, should have the feeling that their religious beliefs aren’t acceptable to society or to the state”.

Patriarch Kirill also expressed his concern that “from time to time, we see groups arise that attempt to create a schism within Orthodoxy in Latvia; then, they claim the property of the canonical Latvian Orthodox Church, which creates anxiety amongst believers. We hope that the Latvian state will safeguard the Church in Latvia with the full protection of the law, so that it frustrates any attempts made by unscrupulous elements against the Church“. It encouraged His Holiness to hear the news that, last week, the Latvian Saeima {the unicameral Latvian parliament: editor} passed a bill to declare Christmas on the Julian calendar {January 7: editor} a public holiday. He considers the passage of the bill to be “a very important event”. Vladyki Kirill praised the Latvian authorities for establishing a “good and excellent tradition” in allowing state endorsement of the celebration of Orthodox Christmas.

20 December 2010

Interfax-Religion

http://www.interfax-religion.ru/?act=news&div=38790

Editor’s Note:

It’s very important that the Latvian President is visiting Moscow, and that he’s calling on His Holiness. Of the Latvian population of 2.2 million, about one-third is “Russian” (Russian/Ukrainian/Byelorussian), and half of that segment belong to the Latvian Orthodox Church (MP). Due to the reactionary Thatcherite/Reagnite Neoliberal economic policy of the post-Soviet Latvian state, Latvia has the highest unemployment rate in the EU… 22.5 percent. Quite obviously, the Latvians are in Moscow with their hat in hand… this is good news on several fronts.

Firstly, the Russian government would demand that the Latvians enfranchise the Russian resident community in Latvia immediately. This would ensure that Latvia would turn away from the evil Free Market system and adopt (at least) the social market, if not social liberalism… there’s even a chance for social democracy. To be blunt, Russia has the spare resources to help Latvia… the USA and EU do not.

Secondly, the MP would demand that the Latvian state support the Latvian Orthodox Church (MP) and shut down and de-register all schismatical conventicles. There is no doubt that Bart cut off support to the schismatics as part of the deal cut between him and KMG in Peredelkino (let’s be frank, the only all-important item on the EP agenda is the return of Halki, and ANYTHING is negotiable to get support for that cause).

This is good news for Russia and all those who stand against the hegemonic globalisers. This is bad news for the American GOP neoliberals… it means that one of their clients is thinking of jumping ship (at least partially). Indeed, the Republican Party is so parochial, introverted, and isolationist that it doesn’t realise that its foreign allies are thinking of alternative policy paths. Have we seen the “Stalingrad” of “outsourcing”, “deregulation”, and “globalisation?” Yes… it’s a possibility.

I have no idea of what shall replace Nihilistic American GOP Neoliberalism as the driving force behind the world’s economy. Nevertheless, it’s clear that the “Free” Market is dead… America committed economic suicide through the Bush tax cuts. The rich didn’t invest in the USA… they put their money into slave labour plants in the Third World. This, plus the pressures on the economy due to two expensive and pointless land wars in Asia, drove the US into a “recession” (actually, a depression).

Latvia appears to be turning away from its infatuation with Neoliberalism… shall we do the same in time?

BMD

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21 December 2010. Our “Smaller Brothers”… Братья наши меньшие

Filed under: animals,science — 01varvara @ 00.00

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Take a GOOD Look… THIS is what the GOP Stands For… People Mean NOTHING to It!

Filed under: politics,USA,war and conflict — 01varvara @ 00.00

This woman is holding the body of a four-year-old child killed in the violence engendered by the Republican aggression in Iraq. George W Bush was nothing but a lying and conniving aggressor… it’s why he supported Mikhail Saakashvili’s bombardment of sleeping Ossetian civilians in August ’08… and Sarah Palin smiled a slack-jawed grin of approval at it all.

If you vote for the Republican Party, this is what you vote for, full stop. The GOP doesn’t care… its multinational corporation paymasters profit, so, if a few stinking wogs get killed, who cares? Only the little people bear the burdens of this world… didn’t you know that?

BMD

To the Stars! Russian Rocket Carries American, Italian, and Russian Cosmonauts to the ISS

Filed under: Russian,science,space exploration — 01varvara @ 00.00

The image above shows us the Soyuz TMA-20 lifting off on its booster from the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, carrying three cosmonauts (an American, a Russian, and an Italian) to the International Space Station. Due to the wise social market policies of Prime Minister Putin and his government (they’ve rejected the asinine “Free Market” fantasies of people like the late Yegor Gaidar), Russia is able to afford sending cosmonauts to the ISS. On the other hand, the USA is now dependent on Russian aid on getting its cosmonauts aloft, due to the feckless and insane fiscal policy of the Republican Party.

Yes, Virginia, there are consequences for actions… this shows it. Russia can send its cosomonauts to the stars… the USA has to humbly ask permission to bum a ride on Russian spacecraft… see what happens when you give the store away to the rich and coddle them? You can have Vladimir Putin or you can have Sarah Palin… one of these things is NOT like the other… no, indeed!

BMD

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