Mankind's only alternative 7   DEC.   22  
Mankind's only alternative
War Nerd RSS

The Fall of The eXile For all those wondering what the "Save The eXile Fundrasier" banner is all about, here it is as simply as it can be phrased: The eXile is shutting down.
June 11, 2008 in eXile Blog

War Nerd: War of the Babies in Taki's Magazine The War Nerd talks about babies, the greatest weapon of the 20th century.
May 28, 2008 in eXile Blog

Kids, Meet Your President A website for Russian kids to learn all about President Medvedev's passion for school, sports and family.
May 22, 2008 in eXile Blog

Cellphone Democracy Cam If this girl was exposed to Jeffersonian democracy...
May 20, 2008 in Face Control

More Classy B&W Dyev Photos Yet another hot Russian babe imitating the Catpower look...
May 20, 2008 in Face Control

Proof That Genetic Memory Is Real! Sure, the Ottomans shut down the Istanbul Slavic slave markets centuries ago...
May 15, 2008 in Face Control

Russia's Orthodox Church Youth Outreach Program The priest is going, "Father Sansei is very impressed with grasshopper Sasha’s...
May 15, 2008 in Face Control

More Classy B&W Club Photos w/Russian Dyevs We took the Pepsi Challenge here...
May 15, 2008 in Face Control

Blogs RSS feed

Feature Story September 11, 2007
The Economist: The World’s Sleaziest Magazine
By Mark Ames Browse author Email
Page 6 of 7

So what changed? Why did Putin's crackdown on the media go from being a problem, then to a blot not unlike other blots, then to something you contrast to a successful corpse-salvage mission in Murmansk, to... a clear sign of Fascism?

What changed is Yukos. The arrest of oil oligarch Mikhail Khodorkovsky in October, 2003. The darling of everyone from Exxon and Chevron to Dick Cheney and Richard Perle. The man who argued that Russia should have supported the war in Iraq, and should orient its oil towards the West, rather than China. The man who, in the end, tried and failed to change the power structure in Russia.

The Economist has admitted as much: "If the emergence of Yukos epitomised Russia's transition from a planned economy to the wild capitalism of the 1990s, which for all its excesses thrived on private initiative, its destruction was a turning-point towards an authoritarian, corporatist state." (May 10, 2007)

What "excesses" might Yukos have committed? Murder, if you believe ex-Wall Street Journal writer David Satter, whose study of the rapacious oligarchs was once was cited favorably in The Economist. Mass theft, if you believe even Khodorkovsky's candid account of how Yukos' assets were acquired. Not that that's a big secret. But you see, admitting that into the record would sorta muddy up the picture. So that all gets passed off as "excesses," which could really mean anything, like "excess of free-market zeal." It's a whitewash, just like when Putin seemed pliable, The Economist downgraded his human rights record to mere "blot" status.

This is how The Economist has always worked in Russia, its hand constantly on two dials: a "sunny side" dial, and a "bleakness" dial, the latter ending in Fascism.

Take this example from the Yeltsin years, a period where The Economist's record is so appallingly deceitful that it would require a separate article, and scores of beta-blockers just to read through without suffering a 10-valve thrombo. In late 1997, when it still looked like Western financial institutions were reaping huge profits and stood to earn more, The Economist said of Yeltsin and his notoriously hated "privatization" lieutenant, Anatoly Chubais:

"Market forces have grown stronger with each year, but may not yet be strong enough to propagate themselves unaided. Their chances would be much better if there were a hundred more people in government of Mr. Chubais's calibre, or even a score. Mr. Yeltsin, at least, appears to believe that there isn't one. Un-Marxist as it might be to argue as much, great men are needed to do great things. Mr. Yeltsin, in his way, is one such. And Mr. Chubais, in his way, is another."

Exactly four months later, as the IMF-backed pyramid scheme was unraveling and Westerners started getting burned, The Economist changed its mind, but in smarmy known-it-all language suggesting it had known this all along: "Russia's institutions being worryingly weak and the powers of its president frighteningly strong, it is vital that the man in charge is beholden to neither demagogues nor billionaires...Unfortunately, as age, vodka and the wooziness of barely diluted power get the better of him, Mr Yeltsin is utterly failing to do this part of his job....Once a Titan, rightly lauded for helping to pull down one of the world's most evil regimes, he now seems to lurch, disaster-prone, from one fit of bad temper to the next. Poor Russia."

Yes, it was so long ago that he was "rightly lauded," I mean, how could anyone possibly have guessed he'd turn out to be so bad four long months later? It's like when Austin Powers discovered that Liberace was gay: "Who would have guessed? I never saw that one coming!"

SHARE:  Digg  My Web  Facebook  Reddit
Browse author
Email Mark Ames at


Shwarma Shuttle Of The Week :
Volga Ownership
Zen and the Art of Volga Ownership :

HALT! - the eXile Guide To State Repression :


Save The eXile: The War Nerd Calls Mayday
The future of The eXile is in your hands! We're holding a fundraiser to save the paper, and your soul. Tune in to Gary Brecher's urgent request for reinforcements and donate as much as you can. If you don't, we'll be overrun and wiped off the face of the earth, forever.

Scanning Moscow’s Traffic Cops
Automotive Section
We’re happy to introduce a new column in which we publish Moscow’s raw radio communications, courtesy of a Russian amateur radio enthusiast. This issue, eXile readers are given a peek into the secret conversations of Moscow’s traffic police, the notorious "GAIshniki."

Eleven Years of Threats: The eXile's Incredible Journey
Feature Story By The eXile
Good Night, and Bad Luck: In a nation terrorized by its own government, one newspaper dared to fart in its face. Get out your hankies, cuz we’re taking a look back at the impossible crises we overcame.

Your Letters
Russia's freedom-loving free market martyr Mikhail Khodorkovsky answers some of this week's letters, and he's got nothing but praise for President Medvedev.

Clubbing Adventures Through Time
Club Review By Dmitriy Babooshka
eXile club reviewer Babooshka takes a trip through time with the ghost of Moscow clubbing past, present and future, and true to form, gets laid in the process.

The Fortnight Spin
Bardak Calendar By Jared Lindquist
Jared comes out with yet another roundup of upcoming bardak sessions.

Your Letters
Richard Gere tackles this week's letters. Now reformed, he fights for gerbil rights all around the world.

13 Toxic Talents: Hollywood’s Worst Polluters
America By Eileen Jones
Everybody complains about celebrities, but nobody does anything about them. People, it’s time to stop fretting about whether we’re a celebrity-obsessed culture—we are, we have been, we’re going to be—and instead take practical steps to clean up the celebrity-obsessed culture we’ve got...


    MAIN    |    RUSSIA    |    WAR NERD     |    [SIC!]    |    BAR-DAK    |    THE VAULT    |    ABOUT US    |    RSS

© "the eXile". Tel.: +7 (495) 623-3565, fax: +7 (495) 623-5442