Saving Private Racoon

To continue with the animal theme, today all Ukrainians and sympathisers are talking about the famous Kherson raccoon:

I started my day with a raccoon confab with my husband at 6:30 am and have clocked two more raccoon conversations since then. I’m in class all morning, and the raccoon didn’t reach me there, at least.

What Sort of a Deity?

Folks, one thing I’m completely incapable of is a personality cult. I grew up in the USSR, I’m immune to this shit. My favorite writer Rafael Chirbes wrote two ridiculously bad novels. I have no problem with saying that they stink.

A negative personality cult is no different from the positive one. Whether you believe that an individual is at the root of all good or of all evil doesn’t matter. You still give that one person an outsize importance. Whether you worship him* as a benevolent or a malevolent deity, it’s the deity part that is the problem.

This is why I very rarely mention Putin or Trump. I’m not very interested in individuals and their failings. Trump has devolved badly since early 2020 when COVID hit. It’s a pity but talking about that looks quite pointless. I’m interested in the issues that he tried or seemed to advance. People come and go but issues remain until they are resolved.

It’s the same with Putin. He’s just a guy who’s trying to hold on to power in the only way available to him. He doesn’t mean much, either positively or negatively, because Russia’s problem – and everybody’s problem – isn’t one bad person. It’s childish thinking to hope that Dorothy’s house will drop on the evil witch’s head and the witch problem will be solved. Even in the fairy-tale it doesn’t work like that.

On the positive side, there’s a million places where Trump and Putin worship (both positive and negative) is raging, so it should be ok that I’m not interested. Nobody needs to feel deprived of indulging in this form of entertainment on my account.

* It’s usually a him but it can be a her, as with some people’s negative worship of Hillary Clinton.

Nothing to Negotiate

Specifically for the people who keep saying that Ukraine should negotiate with Russia:

“Red-listed” means these animals are under a threat of extinction. But that’s not even the point. What can anybody possibly negotiate with the people who think this is a good thing to do?