Sunday, December 02, 2007

Russian Parliamentary Elections

Yevdokia Ivanova prepares to vote while her son Pyotr cuts wood in the village of Markovo,

Kasparov, who was jailed for five days after a protest last weekend, spoiled his ballot by writing on it "Other Russia," the name of his opposition umbrella group.

Let us consider the names of Russia's different political parties:

Liberal Democrats (basically fascists)
Communists (the same ones we know and love)
United Russia (the scary party that has made Russian network television unwatchable)
Other Russia (headed by Russian chess champion Gary Karparov)
Apple (no affiliation with Steve Jobs)
Just Russia (what else is there to say)

There are many others, but I think this bunch will do.
Looking at just the names of these parties one wonders how anyone voted in the first place. The parties are either the opposite of their name (e.g. the Liberal Democrats), or seem to have a complete lack of creativity. I would think a party, positing itself as anti-establishment could come up with a name better than "Other Russia". Of course three of the names above do just this. Of these I think Apple is the closest to achieving the real potential of a great party name, but the Russians could do better. I was thinking these parties could go back to the old Russian tradition of employing poets as propagandizers; I am sure there are poets out there who could put together some great agitprop.

Politics in contemporary Russia is a dreary business, so in the spirit of thinking happy thoughts in the midst of a terrible situation I suggest you think of a country that isn't completely politically fucked today.

Here is a question:
Where would you live if you could live anywhere in the world?