Is China in for a Dose of Putin's Current Pain?

Discussion in 'General Global Topics' started by Adam's Apple, May 9, 2005.

  1. Adam's Apple
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    Adam's Apple Senior Member

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    Just Watch, Vlad: China Will Feel Your Pain, Too
    By Mark Steyn for Chicago Sun-Times
    May 8, 2005

    In his state of the union address the other day, Vladimir Putin, as befits an old KGB hand, was waxing nostalgic. ''The demise of the Soviet Union was the greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the century,'' he declared. ''For the Russian people, it became a genuine tragedy. Tens of millions of our fellow citizens and countrymen found themselves beyond the fringes of Russian territory.''

    Well, why don't they come home? If there's one thing Russia could use, it's more Russians. The country's midway through its transition from ''superpower'' to ghost town. Russian men already have a lower life expectancy than Bangladeshis -- not because Bangladesh is brimming with actuarial advantages but because, if he had four legs and hung from a tree in a rain forest, the Russian male would be on the endangered species list. By mid-century, vast empty Russia will have a smaller population than tiny Yemen. The decline in male longevity is unprecedented for a (relatively) advanced nation not at war. Russia has extraordinary rates of drug-fueled AIDS, Hepatitis C, heart disease and TB, all of which are mere symptoms of an entire people unable to pull themselves out of a spiral of self-destruction. If you seek communism's monument, look around the health clinics of post-Soviet Russia.

    Immediately after his retirement, the now forgotten Canadian swinger Pierre Trudeau took his sons to Siberia because that was ''where the future is being built.'' Any future being built in the outlying parts of Russia belongs to Muslims and Chinese in need of lebensraum, and drug cartels and terrorist networks eager to take advantage of remote areas in a state lacking sufficient reliable manpower to police its borders.

    Moscow couldn't hold on to Eastern Europe. They couldn't hold on to Central Asia. Why would they fare any better with the Russian ''Federation''? Heard of a place called Bashkortostan? It's this week's Stan of the Week -- a formerly autonomous Russian Muslim republic whose direct elections were abolished by Putin as part of his recent centralization of power. The capital city of Ufa has been wracked by protests from something called the People's Front of Bashkortistan. Be honest, if you're Vlad, that's the last thing you need right now. After all, it's his court the Bashkorti are bashing, if indeed ''Bashkorti'' is what you call the people of Bashkortistan. Whoops, I see they're called ''Bashkir,'' and no doubt they'll be downing a lot of kir at their independence bash. If you're an ''energy-rich formerly autonomous Muslim republic,'' what's the point of going down the express garbage chute of history with Russia? If the Bashkir have a future, it's not with Moscow.

    The Chinese must look at Russia's diseased kleptocracy and think, ''There but for the grace of whoever.'' So far, Beijing's strategy of economic liberalization without political liberalization is working out a lot better than the Moscow model. Instead of all this guff about the blessings of liberty, Deng Xiaoping cut to the chase and announced: ''To get rich is glorious.'' And, for city dwellers whose income increased 14-fold in the two decades after Deng told 'em to go for it, things have worked out swell.

    http://www.suntimes.com/output/steyn/cst-edt-steyn08.html
     
  2. 5stringJeff
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    5stringJeff Senior Member

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    Good news for those seeking a Russian bride! :thup:
     
    • Funny and Agree!! Funny and Agree!! x 1
  3. drac
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    drac Member

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    lol
     
  4. drac
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    drac Member

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    Adam's apple
    Do you really believe it?
    First of all the former russia, ussr, russian empire, whatever you want to call it, existed in its form (more or less) for the last 1000 years, so people (russians, ukrainans...) have migrated and lived in different parts for generations, so now you want them all the sudden to move? why should a russian (ethnic) person move from baltic state, ukraine...? give me one reason?


    i think pride is not the only thing which was on putin mind. the slow transition from one form of gov to other is more safe and less error prone vs sudden change of direction

    my 2c
     
  5. 5stringJeff
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    5stringJeff Senior Member

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    I think that was the suggestion of the article's author, not Adam's Apple.
     
  6. drac
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    drac Member

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    my bad, although my point still stands
     
  7. Adam's Apple
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    Adam's Apple Senior Member

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    I was more interested in the aspect of the article that dealt with the idea that economic liberty in China eventually may bring about political liberty. Just as the countries that made up the old Soviet Union deserted the "union" at the first opportunity to become separate countries (Putin's current pain and regret), will the current economic prosperity of the people in China bring about a similar change in China? Will some of the provinces eventually want to break away and form their own independent countries? I was intrigued by Steyn's statement that "China will not advance to the First World with its present borders intact."

    Before the fall of the Soviet Union, the economy and the political system were run by the state. In China today, the people are the engine running the economy but they have no political freedom. It will be interesting to see how this experiment of personal economic liberty vs. lack of political liberty turns out.
     
  8. Unkotare
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    Unkotare Diamond Member

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    .
     
  9. Kristian
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    Kristian BANNED

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    Funny in realite.
     
  10. anotherlife
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    anotherlife Gold Member

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    Ufa is the nearest big city east of Moscow, but before Siberia. A geographic centrality. Russia has now the same problem as Austria-Hungary, namely that foreign propaganda destroys the unity and mutual understanding between its own people. China is not the one driving this. It is the west, especially Western Europe that is driving this problem.

    Apart from this, the Chinese are not stupid. They know that you can't build a country on the style of casino capitalism. Western people don't understand what political freedom means.
     

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