My remont is approaching its long-awaited end – and its most intensive and costly period. To compound matters, I have also been rather under the weather these past few days. Nothing serious, but in between that and shopping all day, that has left little energy for blogging.
This will soon pass, but for now, here’s a fresh new open thread.
Thankfully there’s not much in the way of Big News. These Syria events are going to happen from time to time anyway, so I don’t know if it’s worth getting too worked up over them. Putin sure isn’t. In any case, I have said more or less all that I have to say about the Syrian conflict. I lukewarmly support Russia’s intervention there, but this is tempered by my perception that Russia is ultimately only there at the sufferance of Israel, Turkey, and the US. They set the ultimate rules of the game there. There is only so much (which is not a lot) that Russia can do to push them around. And Syria’s 85 average national IQ isn’t going anywhere. Fuck ups every now and then are inevitable. Some of them will kill Russians. But that’s the price of placing your training arena in the middle of a real conflict. Russia would be stupid to forget that Syria is anything more than a training arena. Fortunately, Putin is a bit smarter than certain commenters.
* ABC: Leave no dark corner.
I’ll admit when I first heard of early Chinese “social credit” c.2014 I thought it was just another Sinophobic fantasy. The initial scheme by Sesame Credit seemed in line with what American banks practiced as a matter of course.
But now it really does seem like it was the prelude to a hitherto unseen kind of digital totalitarianism.
You have some Chinese people saying that this will be good at tackling the problems of low trust in Chinese society, but it strikes me as a sovok maozuo solution to maozuo problems.
Anyhow, their country – their choice… at least for now. Something that you can’t say about the US, which wants to shove neoliberalism.txt down the throats of everyone in the world.
In lighter, spicier news, we chopped up the peppers with garlic and tomatoes, blended them, added salt and vinegar, boiled and stirred the mixture, and bottled it up.
It’s pre-ddy good. Thanks for all the recipe suggestions.
I am doing my patriotic duty to radically hotten up Russian food ways in preparation for runaway global warming and the immanentization of Tropical Hyperborea. You may not like it, but this is what peak cuisine looks like.
I found an ostrich egg at a provincial shop. Apparently there is now an ostrich farm in Lipetsk oblast. Isn’t capitalism great? We need ostriches for the coming deserts. Very scenic.
In unrelated news, I discovered Portuguese green wine at a Metro store. Also quite by accident. Kuban steak is equal to any American steak. I am not into cheeses, but from what I’ve seen, there are fully serviceable Russian equivalents to all the major French sorts (there’s a great selection at Danilovsky Market).
Anyhow, I really am amused by /r/politics-level discourse that Russians are eating tree bark. But some people really seem to believe it.
I am glad that German_reader has rejoined us. Thorfinnsson is an on/off sort of guy. I hope Randal and Guillaume Tell are ok.