Clarissa's Blog

An academic's opinions on feminism, politics, literature, philosophy, teaching, academia, and a lot more.

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Russian Bikers Thwarted by Poland

So there is a biker gang in Russia called Night Wolves. The leader of the bikers is no fool. He found the perfect way to get his gang a free pass on everything it does and even – an unheard-of feat for a biker gang – receive enormous handouts from the government. The gang declared itself to be filled with Russian nationalists and started waving Russian imperialist symbols around at every turn.


Putin with the leader of the biker gang

Of course, Putin was hugely pleased and started shelling out millions to support the biker gang. And this made the gang beholden to Putin and obligated to do his bidding.

So over the weekend the domesticated bikers set out on a road trip to Poland. The purpose of the road trip was supposedly a celebration of the USSR’s victory in World War II. Why the celebration had to involve a gang traveling into Poland was never fully explained.

As you can imagine, the Poles did not welcome the aggressive biker gang waving Russian imperialist flags into the country. Poles do not have a good historic memory of angry Russians crossing their borders. Neither are they supportive of the Night Wolves’ participation in Russia’s war on neighboring Ukraine. 

The Russian Foreign Ministry issued one of its hugely bizarre statements to protest against Poland’s rejection of the Night Wolves:

“We demand explanations from the Polish authorities and decisively condemn their actions, which have demonstrated a readiness, for the sake of opportunistic considerations, to rewrite history and, in effect, to blaspheme against the heroism of those who have saved Poland and the world from fascism,” the statement said.

Note the part about “blaspheming against the heroism of those who have saved.” This is very, very important. Russia’s entire foreign policy is based on the idea that Russia saved the world from Nazism and going against any of Russia’s wishes today constitutes an insult to the memory of that heroic act of saving the world

This all sounds entirely deranged but Russians have been repeating this idiotic story about being entitled to do anything they want because “our grandpas fought in the war” that they now fully believe it.


Tuesday Link Encyclopedia

A Final Report On Letting The Academic Dream Die.” A great example of “The lady doth protest too much.

Another idiot writing something idiotic about Ukraine:His remarks on Ukraine may be the worst of all. Not only does he favor the dangerous option of sending arms to Ukraine, but he does so in the false belief that “they’re our allies.” Allies are exactly what they aren’t, which is why the U.S. has never been obliged to support them in an armed conflict.” Apparently, the words “Budapest memorandum” never crossed this fool’s mind. And yes, allies are exactly what they are, Mr. Brain-Dead.

Black boys and print culture.

[Russian] A new museum dedicated to celebrating Stalin is being opened in Russia.

An extreme case of hurt feelings. People really need to control their extreme reactions to having their feelings hurt.

Russia is reaching into its old bag of tricks to find an explanation for the forest fires devastating the country.

We are all so different. While some academics are terrified they won’t be able to effectuate their mid-career move, I fear that I might be forced to do it.

People are turning into such incredible sissies that publishing the linked photos of oneself is now considered “gutsy”. I wonder what it should feel to have such a sheltered life that something like this would even register, let alone feel like some major feat.

Female Fox News host eviscerates her own network over sexist article called “How to land a husband at the Masters”

In case you are interested in Jeremy Clarkson, read this article.

A great comment about the stupidity of libertarianism.

Routine jobs are disappearing.

At first, I thought this author was making a disgusting quip about Hillary (I mean, the part about “close proximity”), but then I realized he was being serious: “So where does this leave Hillary Clinton? She seems to have as good a resume for the Commander in Chief job as any woman could have with her close proximity to power in the White House for eight years, her eight years as senator and four years as Secretary of State.” Now I don’t know which possibility is worse: a nasty joke or complete seriousness.

It is very bizarre when Liberals try to insult men by feminizing them.

The books that idiots keep trying to ban.

People do say the weirdest things about convicted pedophiles: “After all, in spite of whatever may have been true back then, they have made a life together now, and—in the absence of any evidence to the contrary—it really isn’t anyone’s place to suggest that this life is somehow tainted or “less than” because of their history.” This author has convinced himself that it is his place to tell people what is their place. And that’s extremely hypocritical.

The most hilarious criticism of Hillary.

And yet another idiot academic drooling all over herself in her admiration of Putin.

[Russian] Jews in the Ukrainian Liberation Army.

Ferguson and Baltimore

What bothers me in the discussions of Ferguson and now Baltimore is that the conversation never seems to get past the discussion of police. People immerse themselves in debating whose father complex is more fucked up, while the horrible living conditions and the hopeless, miserable existence in Ferguson and West Baltimore are of no interest to anybody.

I can’t wait for people to stop playing the excruciatingly boring “good gumbint / bad gumbint” game and start engaging with reality. Just leave the symbolic Daddy in peace for 2 seconds and look around.

Baltimore, Part II

If I hear one more person repeat robotically “This is not what Freddie Gray’s family wanted”, I will throw up. They are not the only family who lives in West Baltimore. Other residents have every reason to experience their own reaction to the way things are in the city. And that’s what they are doing. Let’s express any form of judgment of what they do but let’s not hide behind the inane appeals to Freddie Gray’s family. It’s obviously not about that family.

Also, the Mayor of Baltimore is not making a great impression on me. All she has to say is “thug this” and “thug that.” In the meanwhile, I’m hearing that she cut funding for public schools and diverted the money to the prison system. So right now maybe she should be talking about what it is that she is planning to offer to the looting and rioting kids that is better than what they are doing at this moment.

There are areas in Baltimore that are really hopeless, really bad. And the Mayor who has done nothing to change that should be speechifying a little less actively.


Is anybody following the coverage of the events in Baltimore on the networks? Fox News is offering coverage that is very sympathetic to the rioters. In the meantime, MSNBC is doing nothing but allowing weirdos like some stupid representative of Rand Paul to self-promote.

I’m staying with Fox News for now because it offers more than the obsessive “OMG, a CVS has been looted” that the other networks are doing.

I love Baltimore and have very fond memories of the months I lived there back in 2009.

Protesting Coal Miners in Ukraine

Right-wing publications are as dedicated to pushing Putinoid propaganda as the Leftie pro-Putin rag The Nation. Kremlin propaganda is always offered under the sauce of “We really want Ukraine to succeed but let’s keep in mind this string of Putin-generated myths that we will pretend have a connection to reality.”

Here is how The American Interest does it (and mind you, this is just one tiny example):

Throughout last week, armies of coal miners stormed Kyiv’s government district to protest unpaid wages and call for the sacking of Ukraine’s energy minister.

Of course, there were no “armies of coal miners.” The “coal miners” are actors whom we have already seen appear in Russian news segments as bus drivers from Lugansk, separatists in Gorlovka, persecuted Russian-speakers in Donetsk, etc. The moment I saw the very first newscast about the “protesting coal miners”, I immediately recognized one of them as the fake protester in my native city of Kharkiv from last year. (There are no coal mines anywhere around Kharkiv, in case you are wondering.)

Russian news sources hire these people to pose for newscasts. There is a million and one websites that are tracking every part each actor has played in the past year. All that a journalist needs to find this out is to do some actual research for the article. 

What I find especially curious is how both The Nation and The American Interest repeat pretty much verbatim the same stories that Putin’s media have been promoting in the past couple of weeks. These lazy, overpaid journalists are so unprofessional that they just repeat stupidly whatever idiotic line is being fed to them by the much more capable Russian propagandists.

Edited Volume #1

I finally saw the names of the people who will be contributing to the edited volume for which I’m writing an article, and those are some famous names. And I mean, really famous names.

Editors of such volumes want their book to be successful and attract attention. And I obviously can’t bring any value to a volume with the name of my university. To be honest, the university’s name actually detracts from the prestige of the volume. So I need to compensate for the lackluster university name with the quality of my work.

This makes me very happy.

Nanny State in Action

Our Big Government Nanny State Congress has increased governmental handouts to the idiotic abstinence – only program.

It’s comforting to know that our taxes are being poured down the drain on such a completely ridiculous, counterproductive program.

I’m Not a Tutor

It really annoys me when people take me for a language tutor. I always make a point of introducing myself as a professor of literature, yet somehow this always leads to people trying to make appointments for language tutoring with me.

Sometimes, this takes really weird forms. A Russian lady I met last week told me in a very aggressive way, “OK, I need to think about it. But you’ve got to give me some time. I might hire you to teach me some Spanish, but I can’t say for sure right now!”

Then I ran across her again, and she announced defensively, “I’m still thinking about it!”

I feel like a door-to-door insurance peddler even though I have zero interest or need to offer tutoring services.

“There’s a Reason Gay Marriage Is Winning, While Abortion Rights Are Losing”

Ukraine is not the only subject on which The Nation is shockingly tone-death. The recent article that struggles to explain why abortion rights can’t be as successful as gay rights misses the crucial reason by a wide margin: abortion access is only problematic for women who are economically deprived. This is a class issue nowadays.

The social class that has the leisure, the expertise, and the energy to drive social change is the same class that doesn’t find it hard to access medical care and obtain abortions. Hence the general indifference to the subject.

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