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Feature Story April 5, 2002
HALT! - the eXile Guide To State Repression
Page 4 of 4
In this context, Putin's popularity, as well as Russia's nostalgia for the Brezhnev days, doesn't seem so unusual... or bad. Russia suffered economic, social and geopolitical disasters far more profound than anything England or America suffered before turning to its own authoritarian figures.

And we're not alone.

Chile responded well to Pinochet, turning it into a docile land of happy office workers, the strongest economy in Latin America. The Afghans, after 20 years of civil war, only rolled out the red carpet to the Taliban because they brought new meaning to the word "discipline and punish". China, after centuries of decline and factionalism, only united under Chairman Mao, whose uniquely savage form of totalitarianism was handsomely rewarded not only with power, but genuine love, an entire generation of youths hanging their teachers on meat hooks and eating their parents brains just to please Master Mao, leaving tens of millions of corpses in their wake. How many thousands died in the crush at funerals for Stalin and Khomeini? How many tears were shed? A lot more than for Mother Theresa, that's for sure. Somehow one doubts that do-gooder Jimmy Carter's funeral will be the scene of little more than solemn business-card-exchanging.

Despite what we'd like to believe, despite rational arguments to the contrary, humans gravitate naturally towards repression because it's warm there. What the humanists hopefully refer to as society's pendulum swing is actually a constant lurching for order and direction, a fear of drifting and night.

Authoritarianism works. Despotism is man's nigh-tee-night blanket. His Teddy Bear. The proof--America, England, Chile, China, Afghanistan--is painfully clear.

Thus far, the results of Russia's turn to authoritarianism have been roughly similar. Economic growth. Creeping conformity. Improving work ethic. Booming stock market. More smiles. A feeling of stability. Fuck TV6. That's because Russians, like Americans, are finding they can function better under The Man's crushing heel.

Man has returned to his natural habitat, after a brief, harrowing journey into the unknown. Now, this article's gotta end cuz we've got a lotta work to do at the office, and we can't be late for the 7 a.m. staff meeting or the boss'll kill us!

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Save The eXile: The War Nerd Calls Mayday
The future of The eXile is in your hands! We're holding a fundraiser to save the paper, and your soul. Tune in to Gary Brecher's urgent request for reinforcements and donate as much as you can. If you don't, we'll be overrun and wiped off the face of the earth, forever.

Scanning Moscow’s Traffic Cops
Automotive Section
We’re happy to introduce a new column in which we publish Moscow’s raw radio communications, courtesy of a Russian amateur radio enthusiast. This issue, eXile readers are given a peek into the secret conversations of Moscow’s traffic police, the notorious "GAIshniki."

Eleven Years of Threats: The eXile's Incredible Journey
Feature Story By The eXile
Good Night, and Bad Luck: In a nation terrorized by its own government, one newspaper dared to fart in its face. Get out your hankies, cuz we’re taking a look back at the impossible crises we overcame.

Your Letters
Russia's freedom-loving free market martyr Mikhail Khodorkovsky answers some of this week's letters, and he's got nothing but praise for President Medvedev.

Clubbing Adventures Through Time
Club Review By Dmitriy Babooshka
eXile club reviewer Babooshka takes a trip through time with the ghost of Moscow clubbing past, present and future, and true to form, gets laid in the process.

The Fortnight Spin
Bardak Calendar By Jared Lindquist
Jared comes out with yet another roundup of upcoming bardak sessions.

Your Letters
Richard Gere tackles this week's letters. Now reformed, he fights for gerbil rights all around the world.

13 Toxic Talents: Hollywood’s Worst Polluters
America By Eileen Jones
Everybody complains about celebrities, but nobody does anything about them. People, it’s time to stop fretting about whether we’re a celebrity-obsessed culture—we are, we have been, we’re going to be—and instead take practical steps to clean up the celebrity-obsessed culture we’ve got...


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