I have already mentioned that there is virtually zero popular support for handing over the Kurils to Japan, so current hopes (and histrionics) on this topic are almost certainly nothing but hot air. I wouldn't even be making this post if not for a new development in this saga - the appearance of concrete numbers... Read More
Well, so do we all, but the Japanese in particular. Shizuyo Sutou (2018): Low-dose radiation from A-bombs elongated lifespan and reduced cancer mortality relative to un-irradiated individuals The US National Academy of Sciences (NAS) presented the linear no-threshold hypothesis (LNT) in 1956, which indicates that the lowest doses of ionizing radiation are hazardous in proportion... Read More
The dawn of Russia's era of mass restaurant outings - which began in the early 2000s, in line with an unprecedented expansion in Russian personal prosperity - was dominated by sushi. But when I returned in 2016, it was already clear that era was in decline. Sure, there were - and are - still plenty... Read More
I wrote why giving away the Kurils (even just two of the islands) to Japan in exchange for fuzzy and unenforceable investment commitments is a really bad idea back in 2010 and I see no cause to change any of that. One big problem, then as now, is that ordinary Russians are against it. The... Read More
The nuking of Hiroshima and Nagasaki is honestly one of the single most effectively altruistic actions in all of human history. By helping persuade the Japanese to surrender (they were open to doing that with preconditions, but that was hilariously at odds with the military balance by mid-1945), the Americans helped make the world a... Read More
Recent news of the Japanese government directing its public universities to stop offering social sciences and humanities courses raises some pretty important questions over the future of higher education in the age of fiscal deficits, automation, and e-learning ahead. An entirely predictable debate followed, with skeptical conservatives (and I daresay most Unz readers) saying good... Read More
As readers of this blog know, I have long regarded the return of economic crisis as an inevitability (because the core energy and no-growth predicament facing the Western world wasn't solved in 2008-9 but merely kicked further down the road by increasing debt and printing money). It looks like 2012 will be the crunch year,... Read More
Pomeranz, Kenneth – The Great Divergence: China, Europe, and the Making of the Modern World Economy (2001) Category: economy, history, world systems; Rating: 5*/5 Summary: Brad DeLong's review; The Bactra Review; Are Coal and Colonies Really Crucial? It's a rare book that not only vastly informs you on a particular issue, but in so doing... Read More
Over at his Foreign Policy Russia blog, and (provocatively?) a few days before Russia's Unity Day, Vadim Nikitin penned the post Khodorkovsky = Kurils in which he argued for their mutual liberation from the Russian state. Whereas in their time both the conquest of the Kurils and the destruction of robber oligarch Khodorkovsky had been... Read More
Every so often there appear claims, not only in the Western press but the Russian one, that (rising but overpopulated) China is destined to fight an (ailing and creaking) Russia for possession of its resources in the Far East*. For reasons that should be obvious, this is almost completely implausible for the next few decades.... Read More
There's been lots of fanfare over China's GDP overtaking Japan's in Q2 2010 (coming hard on the heels of a big ruckus over its DF-21 "carrier killing" ballistic missile and rising tensions with the US over North Korea and the South China Sea). The big debate is now whether China will overtake the US as... Read More
I am a blogger, thinker, and businessman in the SF Bay Area. I’m originally from Russia, spent many years in Britain, and studied at U.C. Berkeley.
One of my tenets is that ideologies tend to suck. As such, I hesitate about attaching labels to myself. That said, if it’s really necessary, I suppose “liberal-conservative neoreactionary” would be close enough.
Though I consider myself part of the Orthodox Church, my philosophy and spiritual views are more influenced by digital physics, Gnosticism, and Russian cosmism than anything specifically Judeo-Christian.