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Kremlin's Consolidated Power Endangers Democracy  
User currently offlineBlackbird From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Posted (6 years 10 months 1 week 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 751 times:

This does not sound good, especially from the man (V. Putin) who said something to the effect that the greatest tragedy was the fall of the Soviet Union


"Rice Says Kremlin's Consolidated-Power Endangers Democracy"
Source: http://www.cnn.com/2007/WORLD/europe/10/13/rice.russia.ap/index.html

Quote:
MOSCOW, Russia (AP) -- The Russian government under Vladimir Putin has amassed so much central authority that the power-grab may undermine Moscow's commitment to democracy, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said Saturday.

"In any country, if you don't have countervailing institutions, the power of any one president is problematic for democratic development," Rice told reporters after meeting with human-rights activists.

"I think there is too much concentration of power in the Kremlin. I have told the Russians that. Everybody has doubts about the full independence of the judiciary. There are clearly questions about the independence of the electronic media and there are, I think, questions about the strength of the Duma," said Rice, referring to the Russian parliament.

Telephone messages left with Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov were not immediately returned Saturday evening.

Andrea Kent

6 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineYfbflyer From Canada, joined Sep 2006, 299 posts, RR: 1
Reply 1, posted (6 years 10 months 1 week 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 728 times:

Quoting Blackbird (Thread starter):
amassed so much central authority that the power-grab may undermine Moscow's commitment to democracy, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said Saturday.
Now that is rich. Talk about the pot calling the kettle back, they are just jealous that they managed to get that far yet.

The other night I watched a PBS Frontline about how the executive branch has undermined the other branches of the American government to consolidate power in the White House.
The episode is called "Cheney's Law" you can watch the entire thing online
http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/cheney/


I will add that I find the actions by the Russian government troubling but the American government doesn't have any moral authority on this issue.

[Edited 2007-10-20 14:48:31]

[Edited 2007-10-20 14:49:35]

User currently offlineYfbflyer From Canada, joined Sep 2006, 299 posts, RR: 1
Reply 2, posted (6 years 10 months 1 week 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 723 times:

I am trying to add this to my post but I cant seam to edit it

I will add that I find the actions by the Russian government troubling but the American government doesn't have any moral authority on this issue.


User currently offlineKlaus From Germany, joined Jul 2001, 21442 posts, RR: 54
Reply 3, posted (6 years 10 months 1 week 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 712 times:

There isn't much left of Russia's democracy to "endanger" anyway...

User currently offlineMD11Engineer From Germany, joined Oct 2003, 13986 posts, RR: 62
Reply 4, posted (6 years 10 months 1 week 1 day ago) and read 703 times:

Quoting Yfbflyer (Reply 1):
Quoting Blackbird (Thread starter):
amassed so much central authority that the power-grab may undermine Moscow's commitment to democracy, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said Saturday.
Now that is rich. Talk about the pot calling the kettle back, they are just jealous that they managed to get that far yet.

The other night I watched a PBS Frontline about how the executive branch has undermined the other branches of the American government to consolidate power in the White House.
The episode is called "Cheney's Law" you can watch the entire thing online
http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/cheney/


I will add that I find the actions by the Russian government troubling but the American government doesn't have any moral authority on this issue.

I think there are STILL some checks and balances working in the US, while I have noticed them disappearing almost completely in Russia.

Jan


User currently offlineBlackbird From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 5, posted (6 years 10 months 1 week 1 day ago) and read 703 times:

Oh, I agree that Condi really is the pot calling the kettle black, and I'd have to agree that our government is probably envious that they've done so well at eroding democracy.

But the truth is what's going on BOTH here and Russia is very very bad...


User currently offlineCfalk From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (6 years 10 months 1 week 1 hour ago) and read 659 times:

Quoting Yfbflyer (Reply 1):
Now that is rich. Talk about the pot calling the kettle back, they are just jealous that they managed to get that far yet.

The other night I watched a PBS Frontline about how the executive branch has undermined the other branches of the American government to consolidate power in the White House.

Let me guess - Bill Moyers? PBS is hardly an objective source anymore.

The Supreme Court consists of 4 conservatives, 4 liberals, and one justice who generally straddles the fence, but mostly votes left.

The Congress (both houses) is in the hands of the Democrats.

So explain to me how the White House is consolidating power.

Quoting Blackbird (Reply 5):
Oh, I agree that Condi really is the pot calling the kettle black, and I'd have to agree that our government is probably envious that they've done so well at eroding democracy.

Back that up. You don't just throw such bombs without evidence (although the left is famous for it). Back it up.

Quoting Blackbird (Thread starter):
"I think there is too much concentration of power in the Kremlin. I have told the Russians that. Everybody has doubts about the full independence of the judiciary. There are clearly questions about the independence of the electronic media and there are, I think, questions about the strength of the Duma,"

Getting back on topic, I worked in Russia for quite a few years in the 90s, and got to know Russians pretty well - as well as a westerner can. They don't think like us. They love the idea of political freedom and all that, but they also have historically a very strong desire for someone to be in charge, 100%. I think they would like to be able to vote him out every few years, but while he is in power, Russians seem to like the idea that he is really, really in charge. Russian history is filled with strongmen-dictators, from Ivan the Great to Stalin, who are widely respected despite their butcheries.

Yeltsin's liberalization in the 90s (and the general chaos that it generated, for better and worse) was very much a change along western democratic ideals, and rubbed a lot of Russians the wrong way. Most Russians I met at the time told me that the ideals were good, but that they wished someone would control the chaos, even if that meant reigning back on this "freedom kick"

In the end, Russia will find their own balance. It will not be just like western democracies. Neither will it be an outright dictatorship - I think the Russians have learned their lessons from that and will not let that happen if it is within their power to stop it. It will be something in between. Perhaps very un-free in our eyes, but refreshingly free in theirs.


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