Why Everyone Is Getting The Aurora Shootings Wrong

(1) Mass shootings of this type account for far less than 1% of US homicides. As such it is pointless and bizarre to try to make some kind of anti-guns point with them. (2) They are a relatively new phenomenon; even the term “postal killings“, describing mass shootings at postal offices, was first coined in […]

Russian Anti-Semitism, Or Just Affirmative Action In Action?

While writing this post on Da Russophile about why Russians do not (for the most part) hate Jews – a post that will also be of interest to AKarlin readers – I came across very interesting historical data on literacy and educational accomplishment by ethnic groups in the USSR. Per 100 people of respective nationality […]

You’ve Been Gamed! How To Understand Modern American Society

And no, I ain’t talking of that von Neumann crap. 🙂 Game theory as developed by Heartiste and Co (1, 2, 3, 4). Before we start, there are two concepts we must avail ourselves of. Female hypergamy: Woman’s tendency to mate up the social hierarchy. Soft polygamy: See picture right, as helpfully illustrated by yours […]

The 5 Types of Russian American

In my nearly 20 years experience as a Russian living in the West, I have found that almost all my fellows can be reduced to five basic types: 1) The White Russian; 2) The Sovok Jew; 3) The Egghead Emigre; 4) Natasha Gold-Digger; 5) Putin’s Expat. My background and qualifications to write on this topic? My […]

Edward Lozansky – America Hates A Russia Of Its Own Invention

I will be jetting off tomorrow to Washington, but before I do – a translation of Edward Lozansky’s interview with Komsomolskaya Pravda (Америка ненавидит Россию, которую сама себе придумала). Lozansky, who used to be a Soviet dissident, is the organizer of the World Russia Forum and has many strong, pertinent views on why it’s a […]

“Cycle of Poverty” Is Just Another Way of Saying “Idiot’s Limbo”

Case in point: This article (“Caught in the cycle of poverty”, Anna Gorman) from the LAT, which is a microcosm of everything that is wrong in US demographic and social policy. It is a story about the “challenges” facing a poverty-stricken African American woman clearly intended to evoke sympathy for her. That didn’t go over well in the readers’ […]

The World Russia Forum 2012: How To Counter Media Bias Against Russia?

I was recently honored to be invited to the World Russia Forum 2012, an annual event organized by Edward Lozansky that aims to promote US-Russia cooperation. You can read Eugene Ivanov’s write-up on last year’s forum here. The theme for this year will be “the role of NGOs, Public Diplomacy, and Media in formulating the agenda […]

Is The US Still A Liberal Democracy?

In the years since 9/11, the US has built a mosaic of national security powers that undermine its claim to be the “land of the free.” According to this useful summary by Jonathan Turley, these include: Assassination of its own citizens; warrantless searches; use of secret evidence and secret courts; the rise of an unaccountable surveillance state […]

I Appear On RT To Discuss Occupy Wall Street

Here’s the video. Big thanks to the guys at RT, the channel that has been at the forefront of covering OWS for providing me with this opportunity. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rKW3KIc0zZs I was contacted by RT after they noticed my post on why OWS isn’t happening in China and Russia. As befits a program aimed at an American audience, however, […]

Why Obama Will Almost Certainly Lose

And ironically, despite my blog’s focus, to date my US predictions have been more accurate than my Russian ones. Obama to become President? Check. Republicans to win 2010 mid-terms? Check. The emergence of “a new party, a new politics”, with “the feds [facing] challenges from the far-left and the far-right”? Check (Tea Party, Occupy Wall Street). Dammit, […]

Open Thread: The US Debt Crisis

As with the previous such post, this thread will primarily serve as a meeting ground where S/O readers can discuss the impending US fiscal crisis. As usual, I try to provide some context and avenues for discussion: 1. On August 2nd, give or take a few days, the US Treasury will run out of money. […]

A Tale of the Beggar And The Billionaire

Imagine the following scenario. In the US, a black homeless man “robs” a bank. He only takes a single $100 bill out of the wad of cash offered, because he was hungry and had to pay to stay at a detox center. Regardless, he had the good graces to return the money the day after. Net […]

Decade Forecast: The Downsizing Of Pax Americana

This is the first post in a series of three, in which I will analyze the major trends that will define the next ten years and their likely impacts on global regions. To put these forecasts into context, I must first describe the narrative through which I view the history of the post-WW2 era (the […]

Conclusion: Comparison of USA, UK, Russia

As my series comparing life in Russia, Britain, and the US draws to an end, I rank them based on my own preferences – with the caveat that the perceptions of people of different temperaments, character, and socio-economic status may differ radically. Then I finish off with a brief overview of the main trends in […]

National Comparisons: Politics & Media

In the fourth part of my series comparing Russia, Britain, and the US, I turn my attention to aspects of their politics, including: markets and freedom; media independence; the role of “dissident” voices, billionaires, and corruption; and Internet culture. Some people – perhaps Kremlinologists in particular – will no doubt be surprised by my conclusion […]

National Comparisons: Everyday Life

In this third part of my series on national comparisons between Britain, Russia, and the US, I look at the social institutions and infrastructure that play such a big role in our everyday lives. Why is Russia’s life expectancy ten years lower than in the US? What are the most popular university subjects? Where do […]

National Comparisons: The People

The second part of my series comparing Russia, Britain, and the US focuses on the people themselves. What are their strengths and foibles? How do they vary by class, region, race, and religion? How do they view each other and other countries and peoples? What do they eat, drink, and watch? Where do they travel […]

National Comparisons: Freedom And Security

In the first part of my series comparing Russia, Britain and the US, I am going to look at their levels of social freedoms. While political scientists go on about to what extent a country has “democracy” or “rule of law”, this ignores that these arcane concepts have practically zero relevance to the everyday lives […]

Introduction: Comparison of USA, UK, Russia

Over at Mark Chapman’s indispensable blog, Giuseppe Flavio linked to a fascinating “Comparison USA-Germany” by an academic who was deeply immersed in both cultures. This inspired me to do something similar. My credentials? Having lived for 6 years in Russia, 12 years in the UK, and 5 years in the US (in that order, though I […]

Is This Blog Anti-American?

So I was looking through my “Incoming Links” today and came across this comment about yours truly: typical us-living russia-lover/us-hater. expect him to be hired by russia today tv channel. thing is – i can understand if people hold these views in russia – they are brainwashed. but someone living in the west espousing them […]