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Published in Press Stream:
December 18, 2016

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Published in Stream:
December 18, 2016
Press by
The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
Growing Gap between What Elite Claims and What People See Points to Explosion Ahead, Kalmyk Commentator Says
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Staunton, VA, December 18, 2016 -  The Russian people and the Russian powers that be have just passed through completely different 2016s, with the one increasingly impoverished and suffering and the other ever more wealthy and celebratory, cannot continue indefinitely without producing an explosion, Kalmyk commentator Badma Byurchiyev comments.

“I don’t know whom state leaders are thinking about when they assure us that ‘we are developing’” and make other remarks of that kind, he says. But they should know what has happened before “when the governing class … ceases to be political because it ceases to fulfill its functions”. 

As Alexis de Tocqueville wrote in his The Ancien Regime and Revolution, feudalism collapsed when the gap between the rulers became so wide and so obvious that those below were increasingly isolated and offended by what their rulers said that was clearly not true. “What happened then is well known,” Byurichev says. 

Many may be tempted to recall that another ’17 is rapidly approaching. “But,” he says, he doesn’t believe in the magical properties of numbers and dates.” On the other hand, “I know that in real space even parallel lines intersect and this means that sooner or later the world of fakes and simulacra … must return to the hard earth.” “And the cheaper will be our holiday table,” the Kavkazskaya politika commentator says, “the closer will be this clash.”

Byurichev draws this conclusion on the basis of a comparison between the recent upbeat speeches by Vladimir Putin and Dmitry Medvedev and the facts on the ground in his home republic, all of which suggest that the reality of people’s lives there is very different and much worse than the version of reality provided by the two Russian leaders. 

Indeed, he says, the gap between the two is now so great that it can be seen by everyone in Kalmykia. The wonder is that apparently it can’t be seen or at least admitted in Moscow.