Archives for January 2013

FINAL POLL: Russia Voices Or RossPress?

For background see here, here. Russia Voices is good because it powerfully hints at what the project is all about: Giving the Anglo-sphere some sense of what Russians from all sides of the political spectrum are saying. But downside is it’s similar to Voice of Russia (a radio station), and besides, the more “intuitive” RussianVoices.com […]

The Russian Cross Becomes A Hexagon

One of the standard memes about Russia’s demographic trajectory was the “Russian Cross.” While at the literal level it described the shape of the country’s birth rate and death rate trajectories, a major reason why it entered the discourse was surely because it also evoked the foreboding of the grave. But this period now appears […]

A Chess Game To The Death

I am back to writing for the US-Russia.org Expert Discussion Panel, which since my hiatus has found an additional home at Voice of Russia. The latest topic was on whether Russia, China, and the West could find a common approach to the challenges of the Arab Spring. My response is pessimistic, as in my view Western […]

Vote On The Name For The “English Inosmi”

As long-term readers will be aware, I am working on two big projects: A book on myths about Russia, and a website specializing in translating articles from the Russian press into English. (The idea being that even if it does nothing else, Western institutions will no longer be able to credibly say Russia’s level of […]

Da Russophile Is Now Five Years Old

I have recently been cleaning up my old posts. When I moved from Sublime Oblivion to here, the pictures remained hosted at the old site (there were too many of them to auto-import). So I’ve been going through ancient posts, manually reattaching pictures (so that they are now hosted at wordpress.com) and making the categories […]

Russia’s Budget Is Getting More Transparent

Not often that you see Russia in some color other than bloody red on a world map of corruption or institutional quality. But according to the Open Budget Index (2012 results), the Russian budget is actually pretty transparent as far as these things go. Of the major countries, only the UK (88), France (83), and […]

Five Years Of Blogging

It all began on January 9, 2008. It began, as it is now, as Da Russophile over at blogger. And I was a Russophile then, perhaps unreasonably so. That said I did do some useful work back then. I am most proud of the demographic models by which I predicted: Russia will see positive population growth starting from 2010 […]

Liberal Butthurt Over The Depardieu Defection

I had great fun observing the fallout over Depardieu’s “defection” to Russia. The reason for the apostrophes is of course because it had nothing to do with it. It was Depardieu trolling Hollande and the French “Socialists”, and Putin trolling Westerners and his own homegrown “democratic journalists.” (Or maybe not? In any case, I for […]

Open Thread #2

Comments have to be connected to Russia; all others go here. Please, continue.

Translation: Oligarchs, A Comparative Analysis

In her weekly column for Novaya Gazeta, Russian journalist and writer Yulia Latynina compares the civic-mindedness of American and Russian oligarchs – and not to Russia’s favor. The US John Hopkins (1795-1873) – one of the richest men of the 19th century, trader and joint owner of railways – founded John Hopkins University (16th in […]

The Guardian Censors You Even If You Don’t Overtly Disagree With Them

Here is the article, by Nick Cohen. And below are the two comments (one by myself) that were censored. I have corrected a few grammatical points in this post. They were eventually restored, wonder of wonders, but only after two days – and therefore all interest – had passed, and after I had sent an […]

Andrew Ryvkin’s Strange Ideas About The Russian Economy

By the usual standards of Guardian reporting on Russia, this one by GQ Russia editor Andrew Ryvkin is… well, about par for the course. Citing a recent PwC report that Russia will overtake Germany to become Europe’s biggest economy in 2030, he asks, “Should we believe them?” Well, the PwC is just repeating predictions made […]

Da Russophile’s Predictions For 2013

I just remembered I’d made some in 2012. It’s time to see how they went, plus make predictions for the coming year. Of course I failed to predict the biggest thing of them all: The hacking that made me throw in the towel on Sublime Oblivion (remember that?), but with the silver lining that I […]

So Who’s The New Clown At The Economist’s Russia Desk?

I really did think it was getting better there under Joshu Yaffa, certainly it’s not typical of him to write such vitriolic but more importantly factually inaccurate articles. Let’s hope the world’s sleaziest magazine was getting one of their old-timers to file for him that day, instead of representing the start of a new descent into Lucasian raving. […]

Translation: Gleb Razdolnov – Please Answer, Gérard!… (An Open Letter To Depardieu)

In the wake of Gérard Depardieu’s scandalous “defection” to Russia to escape high French income taxes, liberal Russian journalist Gleb Razdolnov yearns to know what the hell he was thinking. Dear Gérard! You’ve taken the decision to abandon your homeland, France. We will not talk of the reasons that prompted you to take this step. Such a […]

The Kremlin Does A Very Clever Thing

Lost in the furor and liberal butthurt over Depardieu’s defection has been a development of far greater import: Russia is going to cardinally change its elections system. According to Putin’s directive to the Presidential Administration and the Central Elections Committee, they are to come up with a bill that transforms Russia’s current proportional system to […]