Friday, November 7, 2008

Russian Prez: 'Putin Could Serve 2 More Terms'; Me: 'We Don't Actually Hate Russians'

MOSCOW – Russia's constitution will be amended by year's end to extend the presidential term to six years, lawmakers promised Thursday — a move that could pave the way for Vladimir Putin's return to the Kremlin.

It would be the first change to the Russian constitution since its adoption in 1993. A six-year term could mean 12 more years as president for Putin — the current prime minister — who has not ruled out getting his old job back.

President Dmitry Medvedev, a Putin protege, had suggested raising the term from four years to six Wednesday in his first state of the nation address.

Pretty much everything GFK was worrying about in his post a couple months back is coming true. Medvedev basically just gave a speech a few days ago saying, "We're back. We're going to kick some ass. Fuck you if you can stop it." Now Putin may wind up back as president for 12 more years due to his handpicked errand boy changing the rules for him.

Gosh, you know, I LOVE Democracy. And I LOVE Authoritarianism! Both have such great tastes, but where can I get both of them together, like in some kind of fucked-up government version of a Snickers bar??? Oh, the president of Russia. Great! Wait, if democracy is the caramel, and authoritarianism gives you peanuts, what's the nougat? DUH - the secret intelligence services!

Putin will probably get away with it because of them. I can't imagine what it must be like to be an opposition leader right now. It's probably like having bowel control issues and going on a roller coaster called THE ELIMINATOR. You probably can't even stand up without your asshole closing to the size of a pinprick. How can you organize anything that might change the government when you could be infiltrated or subverted or hurt?

This probably all sounds mean. Looking back, it looks like we really hate China and Russia. Look, for anyone Chinese or Russian who might ever read this (HA!), we don't. Seriously. Chinese people, chinese food, chinese basketball players, chinese culture (except the music, sorry, I can't take it) rule. Every Russian I've met socially has been all class and really cool to meet. Russian music rules. Russian literature OWNS. And both your countries are so beautiful it's sick.

But here's the thing, obviously we aren't a gang who loves authoritarianism. It's bad. And frankly, your bosses scare the shit out of me. Probably the same way our boss for the last 8 years scared the shit out of you.

When you think back to you having watching a gang run our country without anyone holding them accountable, watching them rewrite the rules to suit themselves and ignoring all the ones they didn't want to bother with, heading out into the rest of the world and fucking with other people however they pleased to win the WARAWN TEAR, maybe you have an idea what it's like for us looking out now.

We've got nothing against the people in either place, and hope they don't feel like we do. Just bear in mind dealing with your bosses frightens the fuck out of us right now. The last couple years couldn't have been a cakewalk for you either, so please just be patient with us if we start running drills about hiding under desks again.

1 comment:

George F.K. said...

Thanks for putting together a kind clarification. I agree with you that I definitely don't want to get painted as nationalistic or bigoted, and I appreciate your smoothing out my record while you're at it, since I know I probably did more than any of us to seem like a bitter hateful old crank.

That said, did you see on the news how Medvedev backed off on his earlier bellicosity in terms of a sovereign Russian sphere of interest in re: joint American/European missile defense systems? I think he probably overstated his case to begin with but was also startled by the sharp criticism of his statements, which admittedly did sound very much like a severe line-in-sand moment. That he seems to be edging more toward cooperation and multilateralism in determining European joint security interests is a good and encouraging sign. But let's hope that good deeds support good words.