September 7th, 2008



ВВП на душу населения, дол. по ППС в ц. 2002 г.
Индекс верховенства права
World Bank
Индекс экономической свободы
Fraser Institute
Индекс персональной автономии и личных прав
Freedom House
Индекс защиты частной собственности
Индекс независимости судебной власти
Индекс законности и правопорядка

(no subject)

Ездил тут с сыном в тур по Северо-Западным крепостям России. Порхов - Псков - Изборск - Печоры - Остров - Гдов - Ивангород - Копорье.

До революции Порхов, Остров и Гдов были средними городами. С торговлей, промышленностью, ремеслом. За годы советской власти они потеряли в населении процентов по 50. Сейчас, понятно, ещё хуже. Однако, процесс уверенно пошёл ещё в СССР.

Это я к чему. Всё к тому же - к отсутствию в СССР воспроизводства. Можно сколько угодно вспоминать хорошее, только что толку - всё равно без воспроизводства довольно быстро наступает крах. На это хорошее тратилось много больше ресурсов, чем было возможно и разумно.

ирония судьбы

Когда фрики из племени индейцев лакота вздумали приколоться, некоторые русские патриоты приняли это близко к сердцу. Каким бы невероятным это ни казалось, я недонократно встречал в русском ЖЖ напряженные выжидания, когда же США падут под напором сепаратизма лакоты и других прогрессивных народов.

Однако как бы это ни было комично, еще комичнее другое.

Единственный реальный способ ослабить целостность США как государства и нации -- через "права штатов" и др. джефферсоновские принципы. Однако актуализация джефферсонианства в США сдвигает власть в сторону правых и ультраправых, т.е. среды тех самых людей, которые верят, что Россия является "страной Рош" [1, 2, 3].

Так что, привет от индейцев Лакота.

P.S. Что до меня, то я полагаю, что toward Gog of the land of Magog, the chief ruler of the nations of Meshech and Tubal несомненно следует переводить как "землю Гоги, верховного правителя Москвы и Тувы".

(no subject)

Robert E. Hunter, the U.S. Ambassador to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) during the Clinton administration, says that Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili miscalculated badly in sending his troops into South Ossetia in mid-August. This move precipitated a conflict with Russia and the Russian recognition of the breakaway regions of South Ossetia and Abkhazia as independent. In the long run, however, Hunter says that "Russia is the loser here."

Why is Russia the loser? Collapse )

(no subject)

Stephen Sestanovich:

In the short term, the most important question that the United States and its European allies have to address is whether they now think about Russia in a different way: whether this is just an outburst of bad behavior that has to be written off and six months from now we'll go back to business as usual, or whether this now puts Russia in a different category, a kind of international disturber or outlaw that can't be treated as a partner in the way that Western countries have wanted to since the end of the Cold War. That is an issue that we don't really know the answer to yet. The United States and its European allies have not really sat down to discuss that. They haven't seen this crisis play out yet to its conclusion. But when they do sit down that is going to be the question. Do we consider this a bump in the road, or a fork in the road?

(no subject)

F. Stephen Larrabee, RAND Corporation:

says the actions in Georgia were in effect a "sideshow" to Ukraine, which also has been seeking NATO membership and is strategically more important to Moscow. "It's an effort by the Russians to try to halt the expansion of Western influence into the former Soviet space, particularly the expansion of NATO".

The issue here is not simply Georgia. Georgia is a sideshow. What the Russians are really concerned about is Ukraine. Georgia's entry into NATO wouldn't have major strategic consequences for Russia. Ukraine on the other hand, is a very different matter. That would have much greater strategic consequences and destroy any possibility of trying to develop a Slavic Union composed of Russia, Belarus, and Ukraine. It would also have an effect on the Russian defense industry because they don't want to break those ties between the defense industries of Russia and Ukraine. So the strategic consequences of Ukraine joining NATO far exceed those of Georgia. In short, this is much more about Ukraine.

The real question for the United States in the aftermath of what happened in Georgia is whether this is the right time to accelerate efforts to bring Ukraine into NATO? I would think this would be a time when we want to be cautious and careful.


[Russians] underestimated the impact on the West, but I don't think that would have stopped them. The invasion was something that they felt had to be done to protect their interests in the Caucasus and the former Soviet space more broadly. There were a number of motivations for the invasion. One, of course, was to punish the Georgian president and to teach him a lesson. Beyond that, the Russians were intent on sending a broader message to the West: to say, in effect, "We are ready to protect our interest in the former Soviet space and use force if necessary." They also wanted to send a message to the countries of the former Soviet space that in a crisis they can't depend on NATO or the United States. The Russians may have underestimated the economic costs of their action, but when push came to shove, they decided that this was something that they had to do and that they weren't going to be pushed around anymore.


In the months prior to the invasion the Russians had been moving their troops up to the South Ossetian border. They had conducted maneuvers in July which were essentially a dress rehearsal for the invasion. The Russians essentially sucker punched Saakashvili and he walked into the trap. This time they were prepared and when he launched his attack to retake South Ossetia, they moved decisively with overwhelming force. And he now has to pay the consequences. He gambled recklessly against U.S. advice and this time he lost in a very big way.


This was a crisis that has been brewing for many months and had its origins more broadly in the downturn in relations with Russia after the end of the Cold War. The Russians feel that the West has exploited their weakness. And now that they are stronger, and particularly in the oil and energy front, they want to renegotiate the terms of their relations with the West. President Vladimir Putin's speech in Munich in February 2007 was an important signal of the hardening of the Russian line. He essentially said: "Enough is enough. We are going to defend our own interests."

In this sense, what you see in Georgia is the Russians drawing a line in the sand saying that they have strategic interests and they are going to defend them. The Russians were concerned about the erosion of their influence in the former Soviet space. The Russian invasion was a reaction to the destabilizing impulses unleashed by the Orange Revolution [in Ukraine] and the Rose Revolution [in Georgia]. It's an effort by the Russians to try to halt the expansion of Western influence into the former Soviet space, particularly the expansion of NATO. It's not the beginning of a new effort to try to expand Russian influence into the West, but rather an attempt to maintain their influence in the former Soviet space, which they felt was eroding.


I believed that the first two expansions of NATO to incorporate states like Poland, Hungary, the Czech Republic, and Romania, as well as the Baltic States, were correct. But it's quite a different situation when NATO's talking about moving into the former Soviet space. We have to be very careful not to make defense commitments to countries that we are not willing or able to carry out. If Poland, or let's say Hungary, were threatened, we would have a consensus in NATO to take action to defend them. In the case of Georgia and Ukraine, some of the NATO allies are not quite sure that these are "European" countries, and they are not ready to take on new defense commitments to these countries. The United States has to be very careful about making commitments to countries unless it's absolutely sure that the commitments can be carried out.