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Roger Bara

Four years ago, the then leader of the Tory party called a sudden general election. It was a bad call, with the party losing enough seats to find itself without a majority in the house any more. But during the ensuing years, the bungling of the Tories became even worse.

It’s so bad these days that many families who can, are moving abroad, preferring to bring their children up away from an increasingly debased Britain. And viewed from abroad, make no mistake, my Britain appears to be even more futile and incongruous. 

If it were ruled by a serious political party, then maybe Britain would not have to put up with hollow promises, the exploitation of bigotries, biases and anxieties, empty supermarket shelves, petrol stations that have no petrol, and a general feeling of shame at what the country has become. 

The Conservative party has become little more than a Boris Johnson cult, led by one of the nastiest pieces of work ever to lead the country. A privileged public schoolboy, like most of his cronies beside him, he has simply no idea of what it’s like to live a normal life with average wages and aspirations. He has zero empathy for his people, unless of course, they are high-powered businessmen that might personally benefit him and his party. 

He lies and cheats, both in his political and private lives, and is surrounded by people who simply bow down to him. And with no creditable opposition in parliament, he is already acting as dictators and tyrants do around the globe.

Of course, Brexit and COVID do not help. But Brexit was self-made, with 54 per cent of the voters in a referendum succumbing to the dollops of misinformation during the probably-illegal pro-Brexit campaign. And every country has had to deal with the pandemic. 

Brexit is rapidly bringing the country to its knees. Just this week, Intel announced it would no longer build factories in the UK, looking now instead at sites across Europe. We’re talking here about a $100 billion investment over the next decade that is now lost. And that’s just one company. Johnson spouts regularly about “levelling up”, another promise soon to be blatantly broken, when in fact Britain is masterminding the hugest “levelling down” of foreign direct  investment we’ve ever seen.

The past four years since we started this RUSUK blog has not been kind to my country of birth. But most of the negative and adverse situations that now plague the population are self-inflicted. The next four years have to be better for the country to survive. Sadly, tyrants and dictators excel at clinging onto power at whatever cost.   

How has my country changed? 

Our Rusuk Blog writer Sergey

Not too many of you are fans of Russia, but if there’re some freaks who are, I’ve got bad news for them. 

Since 2017 to 2021 Russia has been steadily degrading as a society and a country. We now have Alexey Navalny, Putin’s archenemy and #1 opposition leader, almost poisoned to death aboard a plane. Then, upon his arrival back in Russia from Germany after a several-months-long recovery, he was immediately arrested at the airport and then jailed. 

There’s an ironic opinion here that Navalny was jailed for the very reason he managed to survive – thanks to the pilot’s fast actions (it was happening during the flight) and the intensive care crew once the plane made emergency landing. The doctors checked out the symptoms and immediately injected atropine to save his life. Then, in Germany, he’s had a recovery that allowed him not to spend the rest of his life as a vegetable. 

Well, Putin later has said, in a very creative way, that Navalny had poisoned himself.  

Alexey Navalny
Alexey Navalny

Other opposition leaders are mostly squeezed out of the country. The rest are frightened and keep a low profile for now. Most of the opposition media or journalists have been declared ‘foreign agents’ with dire legal consequences. 

I myself had a meeting with an FSB (formerly known as KGB) guy back in 2020. He first introduced himself as an official from the Ministry for the Far East and Arctic development, looking for an Alaskan expert for his agency.

Well, during our conversation that legend turned out to be complete bullshit; there were so many contradictory facts about him, from the absence of a business card to a very weird e-mail address etc; the list of these things would’ve filled the space of today’s blog. 

The dude was very nice, full of complements to me and… guess what? Yep, he was very curious about my American/Alaskan connections, from Fulbright to RUSUK. He was well informed about me and my media activities. I believe the guy was looking for any sign of possible treason. 

He then, after the meeting, vanished pretty soon because there was not a shitty thing that he could dig out and hook me up with. 

After this case I made a conclusion that the wave of repressions in this country is much bigger than just pressing big opposition figures. They check out everyone who could be suspicious for them. 

I’ve had mixed emotions of fear and disgust after all that. This encounter to me is just a single case of the state’s degradation in general. 

Back to bigger things: I’m not even mentioning here the fucked-up economy and the COVID thing and the recently stolen election. This is why I believe Russia in general is in a much worse position than it used to be in 2017 when we started RUSUK. I’m just curious what should happen here to turn things around in four more years. 

Some say that the darkest hour is happening just before dawn. 

RUSUK is 4 y.o. – How Has My County Changed?

Photograph of Dean Lewis

Ya’ know, I’m probably wrong but I’m starting to think Donald Trump doesn’t even read this blog. It’s like, here I am, slaving away over a hot keyboard and he can’t be bothered. I know, I know, you’re as confused by this revelation as I am but think about it: he clearly doesn’t listen to what we are telling him to do. 

Take the last four years for example; pre-Trump the entire idea of storming the Capitol was a plot for the latest Will Smith movie. Today, we hear “We love you” and are told they were so well behaved they could have been patriots taking a tour of the place. I have also been on a tour of that building but if you look carefully, you may notice a few differences.

I have written here before that change is good… I stand by that but this is truly testing that idea. The system needed shaking-up: the rich have destroyed the middle class and remain hungry. But these changes are not exactly what I had in mind.

However, what we have seen is only the First Act; the real test lies ahead. The changes that have taken place in America over the last four years are almost universally negative. I’ll not bore you by listing them here.

I recently read a fascinating article on amendments to the US Constitution. It turns out that there have been four waves of amendments and each has come after a trauma to the Republic. These four groups of amendments have expanded voting rights and pushed for equality. Each pushed what was considered a liberal agenda for the time.

The most recent wave (3 amendments) came in the nineteen-sixties. This resulted in a series of liberal laws, like abolishing the Poll Tax, to curb the power of angry white men bent on denying the vote to others. We are now in the mist of repealing these laws where possible and increasing Gerrymandering; the outcome should be predictable.

We are all informed that Trump wants to run in 2024 in order to finish the work of making America great, again. If he is not in the custody of the Court system, he will almost certainly run. I can’t imagine actually putting a former President in a cell but that would be about the only way to prevent him from running.

If he loses by maybe fifteen or twenty million votes he will certainly be appointed President. He will never say he lost and if he can get even somewhat close, the party will find him the votes he needs this time. On this point there is absolutely no doubt. And, I have no doubt such a turn would bring people into the streets and some will die.

In the long run, it will be impossible for one-third of the population to force the majority into some form of Apartheid Light, or whatever you want to call it. But it will be necessary to actually go into the fire to get that idea across. So, change over the last four years, nah, the real change is coming.