Voices from Russia

Saturday, 1 December 2012

1 December 2012. A Point to Ponder… “Thou Shalt Have NO Other Gods Before Me”… NONE

00 Black Friday. 01.12.12

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Mammon is a “god”… Our Lord Christ said so. You can serve God or you can serve Mammon. It’s quite that simple. There’s no way of “reconciling” the two… they’re diametric opposites. That’s why real Christians can’t support the Affluent Effluent and their political shills in the Republican Party. You can have Holy Friday or Black Friday… but not both. Almighty God or the Almighty Dollar… it IS up to you.

BMD

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Sunday, 18 November 2012

18 November 2012. The Church Blessed the Unions… NOT Capital… Get Your Mind Right

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When the po-nashemu people were victimised by their American capitalist bosses, the Church blessed the labour movement. Hell, the Church blessed the Wobblies! Russian Orthodox people (and Ukes, Serbs, and Carpatsky Rus, too) were in the forefront of the union struggle. We stood tall in the sit-down strikes, we fought the management goons, and we gave the scabs what they deserved. That’s one reason why the Valley went for President Obama… a lot of the people remembered their roots; they didn’t forget what their grandparents went through.

As for those who voted for the Republicans… shame on you! Your forebears will denounce you… if you had “bettered yourself”, you had an obligation to help those in the same boat that your forebears were in… but no… you voted for greed and warfare. I, for one, bitterly regret ever having voted for the greedster GOP… I kicked my ancestors in the teeth by doing that.

The Church blessed the unions… by its very nature, it can’t bless Mammon (Capital). After all, didn’t Our Lord Christ say, “You can’t serve both God and Mammon. For no man can serve two masters… he will hate the one and love the other”. That tells us what our duty before God and man is… and it isn’t voting for those who’d kick our fellow countrymen in the face for the sake of filthy lucre. I stand with Christ… what about you?

BMD

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

15 May 2012. A Point to Ponder…

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We DO have a choice. We can choose to follow the path of private gain or we can choose to follow a path of common cooperation. These paths are NOT compatible. You can’t be on both paths at the same time, just as you can’t be in two places at once. Any time that you hear someone gassing about “individualism”, it’s usually an apologia for economic anarchy… an excuse for the strong preying on those less powerful than they are.

His Holiness is friends with Fidel Castro Ruz and Gennady Zyuganov… Paffhausen pals around Hard Right Republicans. I’d say that one of these things is NOT like the other! If we’re Christians, one thing IS clear. We should worship Christ, NOT Mammon… someone should tell all the rigthtwing konvertsy that. Remember, Our Lord Christ suffered death on the cross for OPPOSING the dishonesty and greed of the powers-that-be, especially the high priest and his party. Meaty reflection, no? Oh, yes… there ARE analogues of Caiphas about in today’s Church… do have a care…

BMD

Saturday, 11 February 2012

How Split is Russia’s Élite?

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As Russia’s election race heats up, the media seems preoccupied with billionaire Mikhail Prokhorov and whether his bid’s a “Kremlin project”. You may well define the Kremlin narrowly as the Russian government, and PM Vladimir Putin as the country’s most powerful politician. Then, you’d probably agree with Prokhorov’s statement (in his interview with The Moscow News) that his bid isn’t an official project, but a “concession to society” after mass protests against alleged fraud in December’s parliamentary elections. However, if you see the Kremlin more broadly as the collective ruling élite of the country… top officials in the government and presidential administration, and the leaders of big business groups, state and private, who decide policy and carve up Russia’s riches… then, the picture isn’t so clear.

It’s true that, within Russia’s élite, there are strong differences of opinion about the way forward, as they fear both the economic crisis and mass protests, and it’s tempting to get carried away by an overly personality-driven analysis of politics. However, it’s more helpful to look at the economic interests of different groups in society as a whole, than to assume that a particular candidate personifies one wing or another of the élite. Prokhorov says that there’s a split in the élite between “liberals” and “statists”, but it’s more complicated than that. Within the élite, there are conflicting business interests, but also many intermingling and overlapping ones… between private oligarchs and top siloviki officials, for example.

Prokhorov himself is a prime example of this contradiction. He and partner Vladimir Potanin benefited massively from the loans-for-shares privatisation of Norilsk Nickel in the 1990s. While both oligarchs advocate liberal economic policies, both have relied heavily on support from the statists in government to “legitimise” their fortunes. Both the “liberal” and “statist” élite ultimately agree on the need to preserve the broad status quo in society, where a handful of well-connected insiders keep their hands firmly on the levers of wealth and power. Therefore, whilst Putin and Prokhorov may disagree about the pace of reform, such as cuts in social spending after the elections, their policies may well look remarkably similar to each other’s in the end.

2 February 2012

Tim Wall

Moscow News

http://themoscownews.com/editorial/20120202/189423573.html

Editor’s Note:

Mr Wall’s use of “liberal” and “statist” is a far better description of the political divide than the so-called “liberal” and “conservative” one used in the Anglosphere. For instance, US Republicans are “liberals”, and Democrats are “statists”. Yes, Virginia, Republicans are LIBERALS. They are more liberal than Democrats are. Notable Liberals worshipped by the GOP include Jean-Baptiste SayThomas MalthusDavid RicardoAdam Smith, Ludwig von MisesFriedrich Hayek, and Milton Friedman. The Republicans are NOT “conservative”… they’ve NEVER been conservatives. Abraham Lincoln was a Radical, unabashedly so. Theodore Roosevelt was one too, as well, again, unashamedly so. Lincoln was the architect of the Federal State (prior to 1861, the USA was a rather loose confederation) and Roosevelt was the founder of the Regulatory State. Again, one can see that all the “conservative” pundits are ignorant and lying weasels (where were they educated? At Podunk U?)… the Republican Party, traditionally, was the party of the Federal State, whilst the Democrat Party was the party of local subsidiarity, of “states’ rights”. After all, the War Between the States was about whether the USA would be a Centralised Federal State or a Confederacy (or a “split ticket”, with two states, each one embodying each of the two concepts).

What’s happened is that a wealthy group of amoral anarchistic (“libertarian”) buccaneers hijacked the Republican Party and refashioned it from a statist and regulatory party to one based on economic anarchy and populist race baiting. The first New Republican was Slobberin’ Ronnie ReaganGeorge H W Bush was an Old Republican (almost the last of the breed… Bob Dole was the last Old Republican)… George W Bush was a New Republican, emphatically so (remember his ties to Kenneth Lay, Enron, and WorldCom?). All of the new crop of GOP hopefuls are New Republicans… could you have imagined Sarah Palin in the Republican Party in the 1960s? She wouldn’t (and couldn’t) have fitted in with Ike, Jake Javits, or RockyBob Taft wouldn’t have allowed her in the door… do note how McCarthy got the bum’s rush FROM OTHER REPUBLICANS. Ergo… Who are the RINOs? HUH?

Bear in mind that REAL conservatives believe that mankind’s inherently flawed, that it’s incapable of good action or direction without structure and hierarchy of one sort or another. Judged by that standard, Rush Limbaugh, Paul Ryan, Mona Charen, Sean Hannity, Bill O’Reilly, Anne Coulter, and Sarah Palin are empathically NOT conservatives. They’re pure Liberals… of the most Radical sort, at that. They childishly believe that we can leave mankind without regulation from the state… the “invisible hand of the market” will control things. In the last economic meltdown, the banksters and their affluent effluent lackeys would have gone under, had it not been for Bush’s Bailout and the Obama Stimulus. The loud “conservatives” were silent on the “invisible hand”… they accepted the state’s handouts to pull themselves out of the hole that they dug (yet, they criticised the Stim payments loudly… only a blind boob could fail to see that). Look at Mitch Daniels… he attacked the Stimulus, yet, he took gobs of Stimulus money to balance his budget (to avoid having to raise taxes on his rich and affluent pals). THAT certainly colours it in a new way, doesn’t it! None dare call it filthy and low hypocrisy… especially on Fox News.

One could write a book on this… and I’ve only got 800 words! To keep it short, the demand of the rightwing commentariat for low tax rates on the rich, minimal government regulation, and no constraints on private economic activity are LIBERAL to the bone, and we must say it loud! Its basis is in a totally-flawed and overly-optimistic view of mankind taken by no true conservative. It’s servile and obsequious fawning to Mammon and all his glittering works… I don’t care how much “Christian” rhetoric they mouth.

No man can serve two masters… you can serve Almighty God and vote against the Republican Party (your conscience should be your guide as to whom you should vote “for”), or, you can serve Almighty Mammon and vote for the Republican Party. That’s your choice in this flawed world. Don’t vote for those who deny the Fall of Mankind… the Republicans do that… people can be left alone and they’ll “do the right thing”, they say. In a pig’s arse, I say. If it weren’t for government intervention, there’d still be kids in factories, fat racist sheriffs pummelling Negroes in the South, no Social Security, no free public schools, no Medicare, no 40-hour work week, and no minimum wage. The state’s a pain in the arse, emphatically so… but the alternative’s far worse. We’re a country of 300 million… we’ll have bureaucracy… either state or corporate. The former is galling… the latter would be a Hobbesian “war of all against all”, a dictatorship ruled by the idea that “the race goes to the swiftest”. There’s no doubt where decent people should stand!

Don’t be fooled by the “conservative” maunderings of the Radical Right. Vote ‘em out!

BMD

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