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Letters by a modern St. Ferdinand III about cults

Gab@StFerdinandIII - Plenty of cults exist - every cult has its 'religious dogma', its idols, its 'prophets', its 'science', its 'proof' and its intolerant liturgy of demands.  Cults everywhere:  Islam, the State, the cult of Gay and Queer, Marxism, Darwin and Evolution, 'Science', Globaloneywarming, Changing Climate, Abortion....a nice variety for the human-hater, amoral, anti-rationalist to choose from.  It is so much fun mocking them isn't it ?

Tempus Fugit Memento Mori - Time Flies Remember Death 

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Monday, March 27, 2006

The Ukraine: not nearly as bad as the media makes it out to be

Ukrainians are split with the east and south still bowing to Moscow but reforms are entrenched

by StFerdIII

The Orange revolution was a success in that it has irrevocably changed Ukrainian politics. It has been a failure in the sense that nothing ‘revolutionary’ in daily life has occurred. The Ukrainian people have not experienced any massive dislocation from the past since the Orange revolt of 2004. For many the Orange revolutionaries were just another gang that seized power and fattened themselves on the calf of public and political corruption. To others the revolution was more a push in the right direction towards real freedom, a European centric foreign orientation and the establishment of transparency and representative democracy along with a free press. It is these advances that are so important and which cannot be turned back. This is why the Ukraine is slowly, haltingly and painfully on the right path. This month for the second time ever the Ukrainians will have open and fair elections. Contrary to negative media posturing it is highly doubtful that the Ukraine will elect a pro-Russian, anti-democratic government. Why is reality a little better than media spin?

There are a number of falsehoods presented in the Western media as fact. The ‘Orange Alliance’ consisting of President Yushchenko and his one time ally the bombastic populist-socialist billionaire Yulia Tymoshenko is not about to implode. This would be central to the Russians and their stooge Yanukovich to take control. Though Yushchenko fired Tymoshenko over corruption the tussle between the two is really a fight for the support of the Orange Alliance electorate. Polls among the most reputable polling agencies have for months shown pretty much the same thing: two irreconcilable camps; one pro-Orange, commanding roughly 52 percent support of voters and pro-Russian, pro-Yanukovich group which attracts roughly 44 percent support. Such numbers have changed little since the December 2004 elections.

In this regard it is clear that voters simply aren’t moving their allegiances. It does not mean that the Orange parties won’t be able to shape a government after March 26. Indeed, off the record, leading politicians in Tymoshenko’s Byut bloc and Yushchenko’s Our Ukraine are confident of reaching an accord and taking power. Many sources say that a deal for power sharing is already in place. This is bolstered by the fact that the pro-Russian funded party of Yanukovich is hardly unified. Yanukovich’s party ‘The Regions’ is full of politicians who veer toward Russia and want the restoration a Russian dominated authoritarian regime. But the party also has more pragmatic politicians who understand that the Orange Revolution has led to irrevocable changes in the consciousness of many Ukrainians. They know that the constant political struggle of the last two years needs to be followed by a period of stability, if not outright cooperation. While the Regions have many political narcissists who seek revenge and the restoration of authoritarian rule, there is also a group influenced by business lobbies, such as tycoon Rinat Akhmetov, that wants stability, European integration, a prosperous economy and the diminishing of the political and regional divide.

On should not forget as well that Putin’s interference first in the 2004 election and then during the past winter when Russia cut off gas supplies as a political disaster. Russia’s energy pressures on Ukraine this winter may well have been an effort to destabilize Ukraine, but such moves primarily serve as a blow to the economic interests of Ukraine’s industrial east. Russia’s moves have helped focus the minds of Ukraine’s eastern magnates on the fact that economic sovereignty requires diversification, cooperation with a wide array of neighbors in the West and Central Asia, not necessarily integration with Moscow. Putin’s clownish attempt to beat up the Ukraine will probably backfire.

Given the above it is highly unlikely that the electorate will accept a Russian lackey as President or a Russian controlled party in power. Yanukovich’s dream of a dictatorship in collusion with Moscow is a sick dream. Power is now dispersed within the state and between the state and society. No one can acquire unchecked powers. In this sense authoritarianism is nigh impossible to re-establish without considerable destruction of the Yushchenko based reforms. Such a ‘roll back’ would elicit howls of protest from the media, true reformers and younger Ukrainians who want a European style life. It would initiate a second Orange revolution and one that might be bloody.

This is unlikely to occur. More pressing concerns happen to be the banal questions of more foreign investment, more jobs, higher wages and better services – in essence the populist causes common to any Western politician. In the Ukraine the business and money interests are dispersed across the spectrum of political parties. As such they are likely to cooperate in pressing to reduce taxes and control inflation, which threaten to erode profits. Ukraine’s emerging business elite are likely to influence most parties and parliamentarians to promote pro-business policies.

With the 2004 Orange revolution the Ukraine has started to build a Western styled state. It has a parliament in which no single group will dominate; power divided between the president, parliament, government and Constitutional Court; a differentiated business elite; and an active civil society and media that showed their power in December 2004. In the upcoming March 27 2006 elections expect that President Yushchenko will have as Prime Minister his previous ally the socialist Tymoshenko and her Byut party will be the largest group in Parliament. The Byut party will ally itself with Yushchenko’s party to create an Orange Alliance majority. This majority will deal with 2 prime issues immediately: establishing a non-Russian diversified energy strategy and pushing through tax reform to stimulate investments and improve tax transparency.

The West should rest a little easier over the Ukraine. The Peoples 2004 Orange revolution was a movement in the right direction and the reforms now in place cannot be repudiated or reversed. Expect the Ukraine to keep reforming itself in the likeness of their Western allies. Europe and the USA must provide money, investment, support and guarantees to the new government to ensure stability in an important country in Eastern Europe. Putin’s idea of a new Greater Russian empire is nothing but an evil illusion. Let’s hope the Ukrainian people finally throw Putin’s perverted vision into the dustbin of history.

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