Sunday, April 30, 2006

Just keep it out of the hands of private drivers.

news | dai continues battles with illegal light and siren car owners :.: 5 Kanal :.: First News Channel of Ukraine

This is a sign that Ukraine is different than Russia.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Russia Called Too Reliant on Petroleum - New York Times

Russia Called Too Reliant on Petroleum - New York Times

Russia is getting the "Dutch disease." The chances of Russia actually moving to the Norway model of investing the oil windfall is very low. The flow of funds is always headed into very unproductive pockets.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Phil H. Webber:50 years of photos.

A rememberance of Phil Webber

A wonderful collection of the work of Phil Webber, long-time photographer for the Seattle P-I. The photos are great history of the last 50 years of Seattle. They show the civil boosterism that has always been a part of Seattle plus they show some of the grime and reality that make up Seattle. This type of large-scale collection of photos is something the internet was made for.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Poison and Power In Ukraine

Poison and Power In Ukraine

a fine column by Ann Applebaum in todays Washington Post.

Squirrels fighting back.

from Foriegn Notes blog, 


Ukraine's richest man Rinat Akhmetov, and a newly-elected VR deputy, received an unpleasant surprise yesterday when the Donetsk oblast state court took away 145 hectares of his land that had once been part of the Donetsk botanical gardens. The Court anulled a decision taken by the Donetsk City Council to give Akhmetov, a.k.a. 'Botanik', the land on which, apparently, Akhmetov has a residence, together with several buildings built by Viktor Yanukovych.

The land in question comprises an arboretum, and has been transferred back to a communal enterprise: "The Donetsk Ecological Investment Project".

On 10th September 2004, just before the Orange Revolution and while Yanukovych was still PM, former President Leonid Kuchma signed an 'ukaz' reducing the area of the Donetsk botanical gardens by 63 hectares. Many similar transfers of portions of nature reserves and reservations to Kuchma's flunkeys took place in the months before the Autumn 2004 Presidential elections.

Meanwhile, Oleksiy Ivchenko, chairman of Ukrainian State Gas Company 'NaftohazUkrainy', has been personally ordered by President Yushchenko to return his new company car, an S-class Mercedes AMG [list price $215,000] back to the showroom for resale. The President, in a press conference today insisted a moratorium be held on e.g. the purchase of expensive automobiles, apartments, and similar 'perks' for high-ranking civil servants.

Last week 'Ukrainska Pravda' had exposed the purchase of Ivchenko's 'new toy' to its readers, at a time when rumours were circulating that 'NaftohazUkrainy' are on the verge of bankruptcy. Ivchenko is #25 on the NSNU list of newly-elected VR deputies. There are unconfirmed reports that he may soon be fired.

It's a pity Yushchenko did not 'crack the whip' early last year when he first became President.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

news | kyiv: police identify real estate scammer :.: 5 Kanal :.: First News Channel of Ukraine

Police identify real estate scammer :.: 5 Kanal :.: First News Channel of Ukraine
As least some scams are being investigated in Kiev.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Room 12A: Truth to be told

Room 12A: Truth to be told

A fine view on the recent Ukrainian election.

A Russian 'Wine Blockade' Against Georgia and Moldova - New York Times

A Russian 'Wine Blockade' Against Georgia and Moldova - New York Times

Russia is taking giant strides to join the WTO.

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