Monday, July 17, 2006

Out of the frying pan

I should have said this last week when I came out of my hole and commented on what was happening, but LEkvo has done us all a real service in keeping us well informed about what is going on in Ukraine. And he has been even-handed in it which is often a tough thing to do. But he deserves our thanks and probably more.

I agree with the astute commenters who think that a re-vote would be a bad idea. I am torn though because I am of the “who controls the buildings” school. I have posted on this before, but in a country where there is no rule of law, and Kushnaryov’s statement that they would install Yanukovych s PM no matter what the president did is just more evidence of this, it matters who controls the buildings. If you control the right buildings you control the bureaucracy, the documents and the stamps. That is the key to power here. If you control these, you control a lot of what goes on in Ukrainian life. The document with the proper stamp is a necessary thing here. It’s the permission to live, move and breathe. To get anything done you have to have them and that often means paying a “fee” to get them. So the coffers begin to fill up again as your cronies are entrenched in centers of power. Just like it used to be. Power means more money and more money means more power. Disgusting.

And no court order and no presidential order, nothing short of a revolution, will dislodge these people from their positions of power, that is, from the buildings. (Pora’s focus on the buildings was the right intuition.) That is what it took last time, but the people have no stomach for it again, I’m afraid. So I would be a bit leery of letting these people in again.

That Akhmetov wants to court the West because he wants his companies to be thought well of and because he needs the West to legitimize those companies is utilizing what I call the fallacy of self-interest. I have posted on this before so I won’t post on it again. But what I may think is in a person’s rational self-interest to do doesn’t mean anything. It’s what that person himself sees as being in his self-interest to do that is the issue. And that means it ain’t an objective thing.

So I don’t know which is worse, new elections or letting the goons back in the door. Between two bad ideas, which one?


R. Smith said...

The thing is that new elections aren't likely to keep the goons out this time. Might as well do without them.

Anonymous said...

I think it's going to matter how Ukrainians reflect back on the Oranger Revolution and how the world reacts to this set back.

I don't think it's going to be too hard for them to realize that the OR fell so seriously short because of Yusch's failure to provide the strong leadership needed and I think many people in the world appreciate the strategic importance of Ukraine for the Former Soviet Union and keeping Russia's growing power in check some.

I think people know that the OR was not about Yuschenko and that that memory will keep things from going all the way back to the ways things were before.


Anonymous said...

I'm not sure how this would get factored in, but according to these polls there is pretty strong support for Ukraine joining the EU.

I don't know, they may own the houses, but there'll be more non-Russian foreign monies coming in, perhaps, and that's beound to change the balance of power some...