Saturday, October 08, 2005

Forget liberal lean, what about Western bias?

One of the most heavily militarized zones in the world has become a natural disaster area. Defence ministers from India and Pakistan are in talks to work together on the subsequent rescue effort. BBC World reports that the inevitable sharing of resources may have positive political consequences. Thousands presumed dead, yet the only program on constant alert is the one I just mentioned.

New Orleans was ubiquitous; the East is but a blip.

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Rafael Filinov, a real estate magnate specializing in Red Square properties, was interviewed by PBS Frontline's Sabrina Tavernise. "Don't be confused," the subtitles say. "Moscow and Russia are two different countries. I'm afraid that if I tell a Russian babushka that one square meter in Moscow costs $11,000, she will think I'm talking about the price for an entire apartment. She will not survive the news that in the city she lives in, one square meter costs $11,000. She will have a heart attack."

The market is wild, he explains.

Vladimir Putin says tycoons can keep all the wealth they've grabbed, just keep out of politics. (A so-called warning against future Boris Berezovskys.) So he is either the most simple man in post-Soviet Russia or the most sinister.

"I don't regret being rich," Berezovsky tells Tavernise. "I only regret that there are so many poor."

The indifference of Russia's nouveau-riche, like the rest of their kin, trigger the gap capitalism encourages. The solution is not communism, but a completely altered economic system that actually coincides peacefully with democracy.

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No food? No problem! All I need is a habitual diet of Fashion Television and the Antiques Roadshow ... and tracking down my mother like I'm the loan shark.

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