Dangerous Blather: Frida Ghitlis at CNN on Ukraine

by on March 20, 2014

Crossposted from my “Russia and the World Blog” at www.mlenoe.wordpress.com

Some of the US mainstream press coverage of the Ukrainian crisis has been relatively good, such as Fareed Zakaria’s commentary.  A lot more is garbage.  Today’s “most ignorant blather” award goes to Frida Ghitis, who has a front page headline on CNN right now.   Ghitis presents the crisis as the beginning of “a new Cold War,” opines that Ukraine should …
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Zen Meditation and the Bait and Switch

by on July 3, 2012

A disclaimer:  I am not, nor have I ever been a serious Zen Buddhist practitioner.  I have never been a formal student of any Zen Buddhist teacher, nor have I ever meditated using Zen techniques for more than an hour a day outside of several intensive retreats.  At the moment I am not affiliated with any Zen sangha and I sit on my own for perhaps 20 minutes a day.…
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Mainstream Journalists, Hegemony, and the Three Monkeys

by on January 15, 2012

My local newspaper, the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle will not publish my letter to the editor on the bill (the NDAA) Obama signed allowing the US president to detain indefinitely US citizens “suspected” of “support” of terrorism. Most mainstream journalists are (a) prisoners of ideology and false, but hegemonic assumptions; (b) hacks; (c) terminally lacking in imagination; or (d) all of the above.  The Democrat and Chronicle editors seem to …
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Putin or Medvedev? A Prognostication.

by on July 12, 2011

Who will be the next president of the Russian Federation, Dmitry Medvedev, or Vladimir Putin?  Both have been posturing, and the commentariat speculates that Putin might enter the lists against his (one-time?) protege.

Regardless of the pundits’ blather, there is a simple way of knowing who will be next, based on a deep regularity of Russian history (thanks to M. Bakhmetyev for pointing this regularity out to me).  Observe:

Catherine


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Is This the Best Time in Russian History?

by on May 18, 2011

A couple of weeks ago I was drinking beer with a Russian acquaintance, an electrical engineer who works on cell phone networks. Although Mikhail hopes to emigrate, he told me that he believes that “this is the best time in Russian history in 1000 years.” As a closet Russophobe, I was immediately skeptical. However, Mikhail proceeded to make quite a convincing argument. There is no war, he pointed out, no …
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Victory Day: The Forgotten Men of ’41

by on May 9, 2011


Today, May 9, is Victory Day in Moscow, the celebration of the Nazi surrender and the end of World War II in Europe. At once the saddest and the brightest day in the Russian calendar. Sad because of the sacrifices that overwhelm our capacity to understand – eleven million military dead, something around sixteen million civilians. The brightest because in a grim history of oppression, grandiose state projects lavish of …
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