01 December 2007

light makes right?

Edited again to add: I've just heard what I've never heard broadcasted here before. There is a big, blue truck driving around broadcasting happy music!! Bring on the life-is-good-so-why-change-things propoganda machine! Putin described the voting today as "festive". Besides the lights and music, MANY incentives are being given to lure voters to the polls--mobile phones, tickets to concerts and events, housing contracts to villages with the highest percentage of "mature" voters, etc. Sounds festive to me.

The votes will be counted by next Saturday, according to Russia Today.

eta: link is fixed

Interestingly, (okay, I know I say that a lot, but I find lots of things interesting...) the holiday decorations went up much earlier this year than they did last year. Last year, if you remember, lights weren't up until after 5 December. This year, light were up before Thanksgiving. More lights and more trees are around the city. The Snovim Godim signs aren't up yet, but the other lights are up and, as of Friday, were lit.

My theory? I think it's all about the elections. I think having the holiday lights up makes people feel happy, warm, contented...like life is good. And, if life is good, why should people vote to change it? My Russian friends were amazed at my insightfulness when I posed this theory. It's nice to be seen as wise and not cynical when expressing these theories! While my Russian friends know all about the coercion and manipulation that occurs under the soviet system, they're still learning about the manipulation that occurs during this "free election".

Elections are tomorrow...

7 comments:

Ktates said...

Oh I would agree with you - it's like people think the government cares because they took the time to put up lights for us!!!

Everyone has an angle...

by the way the December 5 link didn't work...was it supposed to take us to one of your old posts?

Debi said...

I agree too K8...that darn government just loves those people to death doesn't it...so much so that they are giving them just about everything...election jitters...stay inside safe and warm

Rachael said...

We landed in St. Petersburg for the first time on Dec. 4 last year. I remember quite a lot of lights and Christmas trees and decorations being up during our trip. But, I can't say for sure if they were up already the day we arrived or were put up during our trip. I think the former, but maybe there were MORE lights after we left. Hmmmm. Now I have to try to stretch my neurons and remember.

a giraffe walking through the park said...

Oh I spent last evening watching a "Czar Putin" series on some news channel...interesting...I'm very interested in hearing the results.

A Special Family said...

sounds like a good theory to me!

MoscowMom said...

They did the same thing here in Moscow!!! You're right on; it does make everything look so nice and happy... Just in time for the elections... I had meant to do a posting about the elections, but never quite got around with it... Same stories of intimidation here if you didn't vote for United Russia. Same propaganda signs...

You really wouldn't have even noticed that today was election day. Instead it seemed like a a holiday weekend with busy shoppers. Certainly no riots, etc... They did a good job of quelling those last week. (Arresting the opposition does tend to quiet them down...)

Debbie said...

Interesting! I bet your right. How funny that they're broadcasting Happy Music in the streets.