Friday, January 26, 2007

First signs of the apocalypse…

Wanted to share a couple of letters I have gotten the last few days. Seems like it is only a taste of what the world has in store for Belarus and/or yours truly...

View of Polotsk in 1912 Photo from WIKI
Hello Adam,

I have found your blog browsing Google News this morning for latest news of the Naftan visit of Lukashenko yesterday and spent the last two hours to read your blog(s).

I am a German, visiting Belarus since 1997 too and living now in Polotsk since two years, AND I must say I agree with your point of view on Belarus. Also very interesting for me was to read the Mike's Vacation blog linked from your blog with your comment: "than endlessly regurgitating their mantra: Lukashenka bad, Lukashenka bad, Lukashenka bad, Lukashenka bad, Lukashenka bad...".

My opinion is that the political situation here in Belarus makes not a difference to the political situation in Putin's Russia. The only difference is, that nobody wants to talk with Lukashenko but travel to Putin's audiences held in Sochi (on the weekend our chancellor; yesterday Prodi). And my opinion regarding the economical situation is, that the people here are living not in such a poor situation as they think. Maybe they had only not the possibility to compare their situation. My wife and I often go to Daugavpils in Latvia (it is 120 km from here and this city has the same size as Polotsk) for shopping and every time I ask myself how people can live there from salaries of 250 Dollars but prices like in Germany. But this is EU and nobody want hear this ...

It is really amazing: Sitting here in Polotsk on one of the first days of January, watching "Deutsche Welle-TV", which has a channel in the Polotsk cable TV network, seeing a report about the Gazprom/Belarus topic and they show a pensioner here (I dont remember in Bobruiysk or Baranovichi?), showing her new 600,000 rouble gas stove which "is not in use", because she always last year paid more than 50% percent of her pension to the local gas company... Calling to "Deutsche Welle-TV" in Berlin right after the end of the news and telling them this segment is a joke or fake, because no other hints on Belarus were given in the segment (only the house, the pensioner and the gas stove - it could be anythere in Eastern Europe; okay the pensioner spokes Russian), receiving the answer that "Deutsche Welle-TV" has the function of shaping the public opinion in such countries as Belarus. What should I think now? German "Deutsche Welle-TV", by the way paid from my taxes, lies? They are shaping my opinion because I am one of the 10 people which are watching the news in German language on "Deutsche Welle-TV" here?

Keep on with your blog!

Best regards,

Hey Adam,

Just saw your new web page. Aren't you missing the most important "its about"?

- its about a 40-something Jewish American living in Belarus

I think "its about Belarus" isn't catchy enough... This is just my
honest opinion.


Ok Stan, how about its about a stupid-ass 40-year-old Jewish American who made the rediculous decision of refusing to believe that there might
actually be "corruption in Eastern Europe" or that it might even have been an accepted way of life- an idea that could have saved him a fortune and made his life a million times easier...


View on Saint Sophia Cathedral in 2006
Lol Adam... A little too catchy.

You honestly believed all of that? You needed to talk to some Russian
emmigrants like my parents or me before you left - then you would have
found out the real deal. Former ussr/Russians/eastern europeans are
probably one of the most corrupt governments in existance. I'm not sure I
can go as far as saying "Russians are the most corrupt people on earth"
but corruption seems to follow us around no matter where we go. This is
very evident buy the presence of the Russian mafia in NY, and generaly
any position of power Russians hold all over the world.

I questioned my parents and others I have met in my travels why this
seems to follow the Russian people around no matter where we go and I'm
told the answer is in the history books. I guess when you look back at
the history of Russia and are how many millions of people were once so
exploited and forced to live in poverty by the rulling class its no
wonder that after the revolution those that had nothing and all of the
sudden gained power went overboard. You know that mentality "I'm going to
get what's been coming to me all these years no matter what". Its very
sad actually because for the majority of the people their hearts are in
the right place. I'm sure you are experiencing all of this first hand
now. All I have to say is be careful of what you say to whome about your
ventures, etc... The Russians have an uncanny ability to sniff out if
someone is making money and if they are not getting "their" cut they can
get very angry and do things that were done in Chicago in the Al
Cappone days - if you know what I mean. Its like that The Who song - the new
boss is the same as the old boss (I think that's how it goes... I'm not
a huge Who fan).

Any time I tell one of my friends who deals a little pot on the side to
help support his family to "be carefull and that I really worry for
him" I get told that I'm being negative and send negative vibrations. I
just worry because I care. So be careful and try to have a possitive
mental (and dental) outlook. Otherwise you wind up like the drunks I used
to see lying around on the streets of Kiev.

Kind Regards,

Hi Adam,

Interested in a job you can work from home? I’d like to help a fellow Jew if I have a choice in the matter. I need someone for only about 5 or 6 hours a day to start. Base salary will be around $100 US/month + added bonuses, easy work, no selling, no costs to you. Let me know if you’re interested.