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Thursday, May 03, 2007

Another Original LR Translation: The Law of the Nerd

Vova Khavkin offers the following column by noted Russia commetator Andrey Piotkovsksy surveying the gloomy landscape of the neo-Evil Empire. Blogger Robert Amsterdam posts a review of Piontkovsky's new book, click on the image above to read it.

The Law of the Nerd

By Andrey Piontkovsky

Grani. ru

April 27, 2007

Translated from the Russian by Vova Khavkin

I’ll say it frankly: Not every one is happy about the
path forward towards sustainable development of our country.
There still are those who craftily manipulate pseudo-democratic rhetoric
and would like to turn back the clock… so as to be able to pilfer
the national treasure and rob both the citizens and the state

Vladimir Putin. Address to the Federation Council, 26 April 2007

* * *

The whores—they “snatched” it

Viktor Gerashchenko. Address. 27 July 2006

At times Providence generously endows the world with a constellation of bright talent. In the 1920’s six future Nobel laureates were attending the same school in Budapest at the same time. And in the early 90’s in the same century several bureaucrats in Piter’s City Hall (Albert Einstein, by the way, also started as a clerk in a municipal patent office) set up a cottage coop—“Ozero” [Lake]. Today its “capitalization”—the assets controlled by coop’s members—is estimated in the tens of billions of dollars.

It’s natural that in the new free Russia the same phenomenally talented people have predictably rose to top positions in the country and are controlling its cash flows, enforcement agencies, mass media, and football game broadcasts with their firm and clean hands.

They differ favorably from their historical predecessors—the members of the Soviet Politburo. When those “Evil Empire” rulers started traveling abroad they discovered to their horror that their material wellbeing was lower than that of a provincial American professor.

The struggle with their woeful privileges (hotdogs in the Kremlin canteen, deer skin hat—one per year) awoke the whole vast country which percolated with meetings for three years.

The spoils of this Great Political Appointee Revolution went to the current bunch—the former mediocre einsteins from Piter’s patent office. Now they have Teutonic Chancellors serving as butlers.

These powers that be no longer have to rock their own boat, and they do have things worth defending: With nightsticks in the streets, with handguns in doorways, and—in deference to exquisite postmodernism—with polonium in the expanse of Europe.

However, the need to travel to G8’s, to davos, courchevel, and nice, as well as to store securely their foreign currency notes in foreign banks calls for performing some “democratic” rituals. But even this tedious duty can be approached creatively, with zest and security agent’s sense of humor.

A group of democratically challenged nerdy intellectuals are going to rain upon the scheduled inauguration of the coop’s chairman of the board by nominating a “candidate of united opposition,” which requires that two million signature be collected.

An upfront solution would be appointing an obvious squeaky clean crook as chairman of the vote counting board. But the coop members found a bearded Shukshin’s Nerd* for this occasion.

This “physicist” has spent four years as a Duma member from [Zhirinovskiy’s] Russia’s Liberal Democratic Party, which in itself is a symptom—we know the diagnosis. But the most intriguing thing emerged in an interview given by this naïve Nerd to the coop’s court jester. It turns out that for the past fifteen years he’s kept generally busy by catering to lakeside banquets and yelling at the top of his lungs from behind the bushes in a scary voice “AND HEEEEEERE COMES VLADIMIR VLADIMIROVICh PUTIN!!!”

As a result something in his head turned into an organ-grinder who is endlessly repeating “Putin is always right!”—Nerd’s First Law.

Therefore, when the vote counting board chairman receives, e.g., 2,346,142 signatures (if one gets them through the doorway of course), and a call comes from the board of directors, saying that there are actually only 1,999,999 signatures, he will speak with total sincerity and conviction with the voice of his favorite organ-grinder:

“Putin is always right”

“If you diss us, you won’t last three days”

“We’ll circumcise you so nothing will ever grow back”

“Knocking off in the election committee office”

“It sank”

“Insurance bullet into the head”


A play on words. The Russian word ‘stealing’ also denotes vagina. A reply by the former Central Bank chairman and Yukos director to a question about what happened to Yukos and its money live on Moscow Echo.

*A character in a novel by Shukshin, a popular Russian writer and movie director

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