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By Akira The Don on Wednesday, August 15th, 2012

Whatever you think of this, Putin is one hard ass mofo to take on. Dude puts billionaires that disagree with him in Siberia indefinitely as a matter of routine.

Meanwhile, I kept thinking this was Rubber Bandits.

— By Akira The Don on Wednesday, August 15th, 2012

By Akira The Don on Friday, August 10th, 2012

By Benjamin Bidder | Speigel

Critics in Russia want to see them “burn on a pyre,” while supporters abroad are calling for their release. As the world awaits next week’s verdict against the feminist punk band Pussy Riot, officials within the Russian Orthodox Church seem to be realizing that the case against the trio was perhaps a mistake. 

The trial against Moscow guerrilla punk band Pussy Riot is drawing to a close. Following calls from within the Russian Orthodox Church for tough punishment of the punk musicians’ impromptu performance inside Moscow’s main cathedral, prosecutors on Tuesday called for three-year prison sentences for each of the three accused women. Rushed trial proceedings have lasted late into the evenings.

There were allegations in the courtrooom that the defendants wore clothing that was “obviously contrary to general church rules.” It was even suggested that the women were practically possessed by the devil, having “twitched and jumped satanically, throwing their legs up, rolling their heads and calling out very insulting and blasphemous words.”

Thanks to the slow summer news cycle, dozens of television teams from around the world have come to report on the grotesque trial at Moscow’s central Khamovniki court.

But it has slowly begun to dawn on both the Russian Orthodox community and the Kremlin that they may have done themselves a disservice with this ruthless and bizarre prosecution of the anti-Putin band members. A tough verdict won’t have the effect of a deterrent, warns Orthodox intellectual and clergyman Andrei Kurayev. On the contrary, the church is provoking copycat crimes and encouraging a radicalization of the opposition, he says. There has “never been a shortage of young extremists” in Russia, Kurayev adds.

Konstantin Sonin, a columnist for the business newspaper Vedomosti, even spoke of the “worst mistake by the Church since 1901.” That year the Orthodox Church had the elderly writer Leo Tolstoy excommunicated.

Wave of Support

Judge Marina Syrova said on Wednesday that she would announce the verdict on August 17 for Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, 23; Maria Alekhina, 24; and Yekaterina Samutsevich, 29. In a recent interview he gave in London when the Pussy Riot activists were arrested, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev forbade any intervention in the case — at least when it comes to foreign entities. Meanwhile, during a brief visit to the London Olympics, President Vladimir Putin said: “I don’t think that the verdict should be very severe.”

There is no way to tell if the statement by Putin, who generally never caves to outside pressure, signals a move toward milder treatment for Pussy Riot. But the Kremlin certainly won’t risk an acquittal. This would be interpreted as a huge victory for the opposition, and a slap in the face for the church, a long-time Kremlin ally. And the church won’t be satisfied with a big fine for the band either. For days it has been warning that Pussy Riot’s many supporters would easily help them raise the money.

But the church and the Kremlin have only themselves to blame for the swell in worldwide support. The scandalous trial against Pussy Riot has revealed the disturbing proximity of church and state in Russia. During the Soviet era, it was the KGB intelligence agency and its predecessor, the NKVD secret police that arrested believers and clergy members, locking them up in gulags or having them shot. Thousands of churches were demolished — among them Moscow’s main Cathedral of Christ the Savior. Former President Boris Yeltsin was the first to allow their reconstruction.

But Putin — himself the former head of the KGB and leader of its successor, the Federal Security Service (FSB), in the 1990s — has gone even further. For years intelligence agents have been cultivating support among key church leaders for him. One would be hard-pressed to find any sign that Russian Orthodox Patriarch Kirill fears the FSB. As the Pussy Riot trial went on last week, he laid the cornerstone for the new church of Moscow’s FSB Academy.

Exaggerated Reactions

It was exactly this closeness between the Church and Putin’s regime that Pussy Riot used to justify their appearance in the Moscow cathedral. And, because their opponents appear to be so powerful, and conservative politicians like right-wing philosopher Alexander Dugin want to see them “burn on a pyre,” Pussy Riot has netted a wave of solidarity from the West that even imprisoned former oligarch Mikhail Khodorkovsky would envy.

Pop legend Madonna made a case for a lenient sentence during a concert performance in Moscow this week, as have many members of the Bundestag, Germany’s parliament. Solidarity events have been staged in Munich and a support video by international pop performance artist Peaches is planned in Berlin. Even in the tranquil Swiss city of Winterthur, someone reportedly spray painted “Free Pussy Riot” on the side of building.

But as questionable as the furor with which the church and justice system are pursuing the band may be, the reactions and expectations from the West are equally exaggerated. Britain’s Observer newspaper called the group Putin’s “biggest political headache.” Meanwhile, German weekly Der Freitag asked, “Can these women overthrow Putin?”

The answer, of course, is no. Though polls show that the majority of Russians disapprove of the church’s ties to the government in Moscow, data from the Levada Center, a respected research agency, shows that nearly 47 percent of respondents view the maximum possible sentence of 7 years as “appropriate” punishment for the band.

Regardless of how provocative or excessive Pussy Riot’s approach might be, they still aren’t suitable candidates to become Russian folk heroes. The band originates from a Moscow avant-garde scene whose initiatives would alienate many in Germany and the West as well. Defendant Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, for example, was part of a group called Voina, which means war. The protest artists are infamous not only for overturning police cars and provoking the FSB with an enormous phallus in front its headquarters in St. Petersburg — but also for staging a mass orgy at a Moscow museum.

This makes it unlikely that the rather conservative-minded Russian masses would storm the Kremlin in the event of a Pussy Riot conviction.

Known for its generally pro-government positions, it was surprisingly the Moscow daily Izvestia of all papers that recently expressed what may be the most fitting conclusion about the trial. “What is certain,” the paper wrote last week, “is that in the case of Pussy Riot, everyone has already lost — whether the trial ends with an acquittal or not.”

Article from: spiegel.de

— By Akira The Don on Friday, August 10th, 2012

Tuesday, March 6th, 2012

“The truth is useless. You have to understand this right now. You can’t deposit the truth in a bank. You can’t buy groceries with the truth. You can’t pay rent with the truth. The truth is a useless commodity that will hang around your neck like an albatross — all the way to the homeless shelter. And if you think that the million or so people in this country that are really interested in the truth about their government can support people who would tell them the truth, you got another thing coming. Because the million or so people in this country that are truly interested in the truth don’t have any money.” – Jeb Bush, Sept. 2002

Hey! Shout out everyone that’s been posting the We Won’t Be Broke Forever video on their blogs and walls and showing it to their nans and stuff. I see you family. I appreciate that shit. I out a lot of work into this stuff, so it’s nice to have one’s blood and sweat and big fat salty eye pools getting out there in the world of men. Let it be known that had I a laurel I would not rest upon it. We shot another video on Saturday, for Full Metal Alchemist from Manga Music. Here’s a still. I am wielding the Magic Potion.

Word bond. I’m shooting some more stuff tomorrow too. And I have been working on a special mixtape that will be released via The Quietus, along with musical ideas for my third album, Time’s new album, myself and Polar Bear’s album, and myself and Issue’s album. Dr Hague hooked me up with the Maschine, and I have been having some fucking fun with that, let me tell you. Maybe too much fun. Don ain’t seen his pillow till 6am most days, and his sleeping patterns are all out of whack with the general populace. But that’s OK. Don is used to being out of whack with the general populace. Don hasn’t had a TV in the house since 2003, and won’t read newspapers either. Don considers it important to keep his brain clear of State Programming as much as he can. Aslo he finds it fun to speak in the third, second, fourth and fifth persons at such times as he sees fit, for the sake of variation and perspective.

Some “news” did reach me, wherever, of Vladimir Putin’s continued reign over in the Russialand, where they took  my Polish grandfather when he was 12, straight from school on the back of a truck, without ever getting to say goodbye to his parents. Putin will officially preside of the country until at least 2018 – an impossibly futuristic date the visage of which I can certainly not picture . I can barely imagine what the world will look like in September. Time moves so fast these days it feels like a good month at least since that Odd Future video in which Tyler appears a a centaur appeared, yet it was only a week.

I saw Khodorkovsky earlier, a documentary about the World’s Richest Man Under 40, who was jailed seemingly indefinitely by Putin after he raised the issue of Russian State Corruption on international television. It briefly raised the ghost of Alexander Litvinenko, the KGB officer who was poisoned and and died in 2006. Litvinenko is said to have had information of the real murderers of a town’s mayor who’s death Putin now pins on Khodorkovsky, as he looks for more reasons to not let him out of jail (he was initially accused of tax evasion). But some of us recall that the doomed Alexander had plenty more to say about Putin, like the following, published four months before his poisoning and death.

The Kremlin Pedophile

By Alexander Litvinenko

A few days ago, Russian President Vladimir Putin walked from the Big Kremlin Palace to his Residence. At one of the Kremlin squares, the president stopped to chat with the tourists. Among them was a boy aged 4 or 5.

‘What is your name?’ Putin asked.

‘Nikita,’ the boy replied.

Putin kneed, lifted the boy’s T-shirt and kissed his stomach.

The world public is shocked. Nobody can understand why the Russian president did such a strange thing as kissing the stomach of an unfamiliar small boy.

The explanation may be found if we look carefully at the so-called “blank spots” in Putin’s biography.

After graduating from the Andropov Institute, which prepares officers for the KGB intelligence service, Putin was not accepted into the foreign intelligence. Instead, he was sent to a junior position in KGB Leningrad Directorate. This was a very unusual twist for a career of an Andropov Institute’s graduate with fluent German. Why did that happen with Putin?

Because, shortly before his graduation, his bosses learned that Putin was a pedophile. So say some people who knew Putin as a student at the Institute.

The Institute officials feared to report this to their own superiors, which would cause an unpleasant investigation. They decided it was easier just to avoid sending Putin abroad under some pretext. Such a solution is not unusual for the secret services.

Many years later, when Putin became the FSB director and was preparing for presidency, he began to seek and destroy any compromising materials collected against him by the secret services over earlier years. It was not difficult, provided he himself was the FSB director. Among other things, Putin found videotapes in the FSB Internal Security Directorate, which showed him making sex with some underage boys.

Interestingly, the video was recorded in the same conspiratorial flat in Polyanka Street in Moscow where Russian Prosecutor-General Yuri Skuratov was secretly video-taped with two prostitutes. Later, in the famous scandal, Putin (on Roman Abramovich’s instructions) blackmailed Skuratov with these tapes and tried to persuade the Prosecutor-General to resign. In that conversation, Putin mentioned to Skuratov that he himself was also secretly video-taped making sex at the same bed. (But of course, he did not tell it was pedophilia rather than normal sex.) Later, Skuratov wrote about this in his book Variant Drakona (p.p. 153-154).

Watching Khodorkovsky, I recal thinking to myself that in Putin, there was  a man who actually appeared to have  a little sway over matters. Unlike our own prime minister, who speaks with the authority of a man reading from a shopping list written by his mother.

Vladimir Putin, currently prime minister and child-smooching tiger-wrestler in chief, won the election on Sunday with 64 per cent of the vote amid widespread claims of vote-rigging and claims from international monitors that it was “an unfair win”, but David “Dave” Cameron, who one can often find reading un-passionedly from motherly shopping lists about despotic undemacratic doo-doo heads that must be removed by extreme NATO force immediately  said that he ”looked forward to working with Mr Putin to overcome the obstacles in the relationship between Britain and Russia and build deeper political and trade links.”

— Tuesday, March 6th, 2012