My apologies to regular readers for the delay in this promised publication. Recent events were serious enough to distract me (and everyone else), but not to make me forget. The need to return to this matter arises again – even stronger than before.
This article is an attempt to share must-have dissident experience accumulated during the rise of neo-soviet regime in the Internet. As it’s very hard for the reader unfamiliar with daily life in Russia to understand everything at once, the information will come in logcally ordered parts.
You may be not old enough to remember how the World Wide Web came around, but thanks to technological slowdown traditional for Russia, I’ve managed to see the world of computers literally growing from imported seeds before my own eyes, without being as old as WWW.
The school where I had my studies possessed only one computer with Internet access. Its single dial-up modem had been regularly taken by teacher “for preservation” to her home. There was no LAN at all. The best of classroom computers were battered Pentium II-based machines with pirated software, which looked like wonders of technology compared to common 486s abused to near-wreck condition. Without “special” connections, no one could hope for more than 2 hours of laboratory access per week and even this quota was questionable as some of machines wouldn’t start at all, forcing almost everyone to share workplace with mate(s). Most of teen ruskies had a little interest in computer though, preferring vodka/drugs “social networking” in dirty alleys. Internet was a businessman’s tool and a geek’s shelter. That was Moscow, the beginning of 21st century! (And a typical russian school, they have no educational segregation like in U.S.)
Nevertheless, comparing those times with modern reality one can see it wasn’t that bad. At least roadside drunk that Russia was 15 years ago isn’t a thug that modern Russia is.
In wrong hands, things originally supposed to enhance life can’t bring any good. Made into caste privileges and/or tools of repressions, technology ends up finally turned against its own creators. This happened in each and every repressive society, and Russia has become a champion of such abuse. Technology plus thugs equals disaster.
The most ironic thing here is a calamitous result of Western 1990s campaign to turn criminal subhuman society into “democratic” country. Obviously, they forgot that giving human items to apes does NOT turn them into humans.
When ruskie gets a car (and driving license for traditional bribe), his usual “fun” is get boozed and drive like blindfolded madman with predictable results. Getting a gun (in Russia, handguns are available only to “police” thugs, licensed security, military officers and government as a caste privilege), he exercises target practice on someone whom he just doesn’t like. Or if it’s a yokel who can afford only a shotgun (rifles are allowed only after 5 years of shotgun possession), he blasts his own family members after vodka warm-up. In a typical russian village where I spent several summers, such things happened in every next generation of natives. Internet, which has become a natural part of daily life for the civilized world, is not an exception. Continue in your imagination what happens if ruskie gets his ape paws on a device with modern, fast Internet connection.
Many ruskies even admit all that – non-directly, of course. They praise Soviet era as time of “order and stability”. It really was a bit cleaner and safer in USSR, but only because all things were damn hard to get or repair. One who wrecked his car couldn’t hope for same-week replacement even being a communist party member. In general, untermenschen just had much less opportunities for abuse.
TO BE CONTINUED