Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Some quick observations on Ukraine then the US

Not much time to write. Follow the links to Neeka's Backlog for good, ongoing commentary on the ongoing situation in Ukraine. Also follow the news links on my blog. . .

Still no beet-harvesting with my family in Pidhajtsi. But I have done a ton of filming and inteviewing. Based on my observations from L'viv, some locales in the Carpathians, Pidhajtsi in the Galician heartlands, Ternopil, Kyiv, Odessa, and Poltava, it seems the following is the case with all of those who supported the OR:

By and large, average people are either now completely against all of them (Yushchenko, Poroshenko, Tymoshenko, et al) and still have no idea who to vote for next Spring, or if they are still for someone, they are overwhelmingly pro-Tymoshenko. .

I guess this is an obvious observation. But even among those who have been critical of them all, people seem to hold the least against Tymoshenko; whether this will be for better or worse, we will have to see.

I will be in Kharkiv and elsewhere in the east in a week or two to see what is up there.

Now on to the US:

I just read that Bush is giving his first press conference since May. Does this mean that he didn't once speak directly to the nation of which he is the nominal leader during the immediate days of the hurricane crisis? What, he can't defend himself to the people? I am tired of this aloof and executive-power drunk administration and the damned congress that tolerates it. Can the congress altogether say, "Bah! Bah! Bah!" Bush is not the God-appointed good Shepherd he took himself to be after 911 (don't forget he proclaimed that he felt he was meant to be president in this supposedly new time of terror). He's given the least press conferences of any president for a long time, while at the same time his administration and his justice-department wonks are doing everything they can to eliminate or limit transparency in government and business based on the excuse of terrorism. He's becoming ever more aloof and out of touch, while at the same time demanding the upmost respect for the post of presidency. Amreicans are being slowly convinced to accept a kind of king again. This is hyperbole, of course, but the point is: The US system under the Bush administration and under the Patriot Acts and under a president who looks as ridiculous and aloof as Kuchma used to at his press conferences has become far too tipped toward executive power.

I hope no heir to Bush is elected--or steals the election--next time around and that the Patriot Acts will be in every way revoked.

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