A Second Rate Power

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Last week in the midst of a discussion on politics, we became convinced that the United States, world class home of spin doctors, host to the largest investor relations focused university program in the world (i.e. the entire State of California), a country unparalleled in turning fiction (particularly earnings) into fact, a least temporarily, had no peer in the political bullshit arena . Our favored presidential candidate is elevated above the masses on a dais, as if the figure of a heroic Greek statesman, after all. Who could rival the innate obscenity of U.S. star fucking, so ritualized from repetition at this point as to roll off us like mercury off a greased duck's back?

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin will hold a live call-in show on national television next week, in what analysts say may signal the start of his campaign to regain the presidency.
The broadcast will be held "in the first week of December," Putin's spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, said by phone today. The exact date will be announced later this week, he said.

[...]

Putin, who has remained at the center of power as premier since stepping down as president in May, last week vowed to protect Russians from another financial collapse like the 1998 default in a speech to United Russia's annual party congress. He will use the call-in show to further cement his credentials as a national leader in a time of crisis, said Olga Kryshtanovskaya, a political analyst at the Russian Academy of Sciences.
"This is to maintain his status as national leader," Kryshtanovskaya said by telephone today. "He needs to remind everyone that he is the most important person in the country and can solve problems in difficult times."

And you thought the "Fireside Chats" were impressive. Hah...

President from 2000 to 2008, Putin held an annual nationwide call-in for the past seven years, broadcast live and lasting several hours, with questions on a wide range of issues submitted by TV link-up, phone and Internet. The event dominated TV news coverage on the days it aired.

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