National Exit Poll Results
Happy retirement, Mr. Moroz. Welcome back, Mr. Lytvyn. You hold the "golden share."
Sunday, September 30, 2007
President Yushchenko and First Lady Kateryna Yushchenko Cast Ballots
Voter turnout as of 4 p.m. Kyiv time (GMT+2:00): 42.55 percent
"Я думаю, що дострокових виборів в Україні вже не буде... Упевнений, що ми переможемо на цих виборах".This soundbite was extracted at the polling station where the Yanukovychs cast their ballots.
I believe that snap elections in Ukraine will no longer be held. I am confident that we will win this election.
Friday, September 28, 2007
Achievers: PRU, BYuT, NUNS, KPU
Strugglers: SPU, LyB, PSPU
Over the last year, our leaders have proved a lot to us. Viktor Yanukovych and the Party of Regions have proved that they have the experience and true leadership qualities to achieve results. What have the Orange Revolution leaders proved? That politicians unable to work together cannot run the government. That power is more important to them than improving the lives of ordinary people. Protect your future. Viktor Yanukovych and the Party of Regions: a proven track record of results for Ukraine.
Orange revolutionaries promised us a lot of good things. But instead of economic growth, we ended up with a surge in unemployment and a price hike. Instead of Ukraine’s recognition in the international arena we ended up in an argument with Russia. Instead of government reform, we witnessed incessant turf battles and corruption, which prompted Yushchenko to fire Tymoshenko. The inability of Orange leaders to work together is a proven fact. To get rid of the Orange chaos, vote Viktor Yanukovych and the Party of Regions.
In a democracy the power belongs to the people. That’s why Viktor Yanukovych proposed the initiative to hold a referendum on making Russian a second official language, on adhering to a policy of nonalignment with regard to our foreign partners, and on empowering the people with the right to elect their governors directly, instead of kowtowing to the President’s cronies. Don’t waste your vote. Viktor Yanukovych and the Party of Regions. Protect your deepest values.
Why elect a PM candidate who was once fired for incompetence? The Tymoshenko government was sacked because its irresponsible policies had lead to economic contraction, artificial international conflicts and price hikes. Now she does not want to look the people in the eye, alleging that she has achieved a great success. But if she was such a good prime minister, then why would they fire her? The people know why, and will not let themselves be scammed again.
Together we can stop them. Tymoshenko and the Oranges are against a referendum on Russian as a second official language. They are dragging Ukraine into military alliances. They want to put their cronies and lyubi druzi in the governors’ seats in every oblast. The Party of Regions is initiating a referendum to stop their encroachments on our values. Don’t waste your vote. The Party of Regions. Protect your deepest values.
They cheated and sold out. They clang to their seats and reached for their guns. Betrayal and political corruption became a challenge for the country. But we didn’t crumble. We didn’t give in. There will be a new election. Justice has prevailed.
You are tired of politics. You think that your elected representatives forgot you and are fighting for power. True, there is a fight going on — between our political team and a few family clans that have pocketed three-thirds of Ukraine’s national wealth. They, relying on the power of money, have destroyed the victory of Maidan. Don’t be naive. They don’t care what language you speak; whether Ukraine will be independent or will merge into a new Soviet Union; whether we will be in NATO or not. What they do care about is how much money they will make off Ukraine. They are the shadowy lords of the companies you work for, and you vote as they say. They are buying television channels and are messing with your mind and choice. But I believe that in the early election you will break this vicious circle, and life will be born in Ukraine. And no matter how much they will defame me, make no mistake: In this great struggle I’m with you, and the time of your victory has finally come.
Michelle Nostradamus: Prophecy 2007
The Dame will gain power without any quarrel
Freedom, untaintedness, safety, and so
The plague of foul words shall have no more explosions
Without any war she will bring it closure
China’s economic miracle, Japan’s intellectual revolution, the great leap forward by Asian tigers such as South Korea and Taiwan. They’ve made a real breakthrough in the economies and sciences of their countries. We, too, are not satisfied with today’s questionable evolution. We offer our Ukrainian Breakthrough, a strategy for national development. This plan should finally be written by us, by our Ukrainian scientists and intellectuals. Let us stop relying on foreign consultants. We offer to create a national strategic assembly that will pool the intellectual potential of the country. Let us believe in ourselves and put forward living standards that will set an example for the entire globe. Share your ideas and knowledge with Ukraine. The new government, in the new Verkhovna Rada, will adopt the Ukrainian Breakthrough strategy. The time has come for real work to start.
Andriy Kozhemyakin, Major-General: Military reform is needed in Ukraine. Only a professional, combat-ready army can effectively protect the sovereignty of an independent Ukraine.
Mykola Kostrov, Rear Admiral: Young people should study, while the country’s defense should be entrusted to professionals, who will have fair pay and living conditions.
Mykola Petruk, Colonel-General: As early as next year, it is realistic to abandon conscription, and by the end of 2009 to finalize the сhangeover to a professional army. Ukraine’s rebirth starts with the rebirth of the Ukrainian armed forces.
Corrupt official: Here you go. Check it one more time.
“Little Ukrainian:” Excuse me…
Corrupt official: And who’s this?
Official’s assistant: This is the “Little Ukrainian.”
Corrupt official: You mean the people? I see, get him out of here.
“Little Ukrainian:” But this is our country, too.
Official’s assistant: Elections are approaching.
Corrupt official: Okay. Here’s your salary, your pension, and here’s for the kids. Now go on and vote like you should.
Official’s assistant: Are you sure you didn’t give him too much?
Corrupt official: That will buy us a few more years in power.
Voiceover: They’re buying you. Don’t sell out. Nasha Ukrayina-Narodna Samooborona [Our Ukraine-People’s Self-Defense].
Where exactly is the Party of Regions headed when they talk about lifting parliamentary immunity? Last year, they demanded that the Rada not lift parliamentary immunity. Later on, they changed their point of view, having stated that immunity should be extended to members of their government. Now they agree with their opponents that immunity should be lifted. But they had more than 375 days to make it happen. The problem is that you never know what direction the Party of Regions will take.
People all over the country are suffering from officials’ unlawfulness. By lifting parliamentary immunity we want to lift the magnet that attracts mafia members to parliament, instead of attracting those who will write laws for the people. MPs must live by the same laws — without any allowances — must ride on our roads, use our hospitals, deal with our police and courts. So that they can feel the problems of ordinary people and change the laws for the better. Nasha Ukrayina-Narodna Samooborona [Our Ukraine-People’s Self-Defense]. One law for all.
What can we expect from yet another Regionalist government? When President Yushchenko offered to raise the salaries of public school teachers and healthcare employees in the next year’s budget, the Regionalist government said no. Raise pensions by 35 percent? Again, no. Raise aid to large families? No! The government of Regionalists wants to be in power again. What will we tell them come Sept. 30? Nasha Ukrayina-Narodna Samooborona [Our Ukraine-People’s Self-Defense]. One law for all.
Tens of thousands of villages all over Ukraine don’t have a single ambulance. This is dangerous. This is unfair. We will reduce the fleet of luxury cars for government officials and members of parliament, and will provide every village with an ambulance. This is protection. This is fairness. The time for change has come. Nasha Ukrayina-Narodna Samooborona [Our Ukraine-People’s Self-Defense]. One law for all.
Who are you? A spiritual descendant of Vatutin and Kovpak or of Bandera and Shukhevych? A descendant of those who served Ukrainian Nazis or of those who saved humanity from the brown plague? Remember your name. Take care of your Fatherland. Our number on the ballot sheet is 13.
A mediocre spoof based on The Hunt for Two Rabbits (1961), a popular Soviet comedy about a late 19th-century Kyiv polygamist-con artist who courts two young ladies, but ends up with his cover blown and his plans ruined. In this ad, Svyryd Golokhvastov, the main character “impersonates” President Yushchenko
Golokhvastov: For us true patriots, the ideals of Maidan are higher than the Lavra Bellfry. And if from the heights of Bankova Street [Office of the President] you stare down, the folks underneath, with their problems, appear so teeny-weeny, like mice. Pardon me, like rats.
Golokhvastov's never-to-be in-laws: Isn’t he smart! Awesome!
Yes to democracy! Down with dictatorship! Time to elect a fair government. Vote for the Communist Party of Ukraine, No. 13 on the ballot sheet.
Dear citizens! Today you see splashy ads of various parties, but there’s only one choice you have. There are those who promise their voters the “moon,” but struggle for power by flouting the Constitution. And yet there are people who call for laws to be observed and who suggest systemic changes. We should change not the faces, but the function of government, change the quality of life of the entire society. All rights and power to local citizens!
My fellow compatriots, the snap election gamble that Viktor Yushchenko has embarked on is a war against the Constitution, the judiciary and the local government reform. The Socialists are keeping the commitments they undertook before the voters, and are putting the [pro-Yanukovych] politreforma to work. The President, as always, wants to handpick rayon [country] and oblast [state] chiefs. Yushchenko’s goal is to become Kuchma. The Socialists’ goal is to vest the power in communities.
My fellow compatriots, I, Vasyl Tsushko, hereby report to you that under my leadership of the Ministry of the Interior the murder rate has decreased by 12 percent, and robbery by 15 percent. The MoI has upheld the law and citizen security. The Socialists and our leader, Oleksandr Moroz will not countenance civil strife in the country and usurpation of power by Yushchenkos, Tymoshenkos and their accomplices.
This is our life. This is our government. The government is the life. People deserve better than this — and better ones. I’m coming back to put a stop to misgovernment and to confer a just order. Volodymyr Lytvin. Honesty, integrity, professionalism.
Volodymyr Lytvyn. At a turning point for this country, head of the Verkhovna Rada Volodymyr Lytvyn upheld the law, stopped the anarchy, and prevented bloodshed at the presidential election. Without his wit, strength, and tactfulness, the country has succumbed to wiles, cynicism, and deceit. Stop! The country needs a politician of resolve and responsibility. Lytvyn means order in the Rada, the rule of law in the country, the prosperity and confidence of everyone. The country needs Lytvyn.
I’m addressing each and every one of you. Has life gotten any better? Are you satisfied with prices and bills? Is healthcare affordable? Do you have housing opportunities? Are you sure that your land will not be taken away from you? My answer and yours is no! I will stand for all who were forgotten by the present authorities. This is my oath. Vote for the Lytvyn bloc, No. 7 on the ballot sheet.
Let’s protect our country from being robbed by oligarchs, from land grabs and NATO occupation. Don’t be a traitor. Vote for No. 12, Natalia Vitrenko’s Progressive Socialist Party of Ukraine.
A pompous Soviet/WW II-style ad interpolated with “Sacred War” and a Levitan-like voiceover.
From the people’s information bureau: Today, at Yushchenko’s whim, Ukraine is being dragged into NATO. Our Motherland and the lives of our children have come under threat. We will protect our peace. We will protect Ukraine from NATO. Natalia Vitrenko, leader of the Progressive Socialist Party of Ukraine.
They say “zRadu het!”[Down with parliament!], but still betray each other. They say “we’re for independence,” but still rekindle fascism. They say “we’re for fair elections,” but still fine-tune the election results to fit the political order of things. They’ve worn everyone out. Down with cheaters and liars! Free people should live in a fair society. Natalia Vitrenko, leader of the Progressive Socialist Party of Ukraine.
Now See This!
The Cabinet of Ministers official site now features a kids section. The earlier Ukrainians learn about servility, uh sorry, stability, the more prosperous some of them will be, right?
More funnies. This is an R-rated, unedited version of a televised address by Kharkiv mayor Mykhailo Dobkin, PRU. As the filming takes place behind the screen, Dobkin and his associates swear profusely. I wouldn’t dare provide translated minutes.
Thursday, September 27, 2007
Good News, Bad News: Yanukovych 'Argues' with Himself
This is a clean, untampered montage of two videos. The montage contrasts Yanukovych’s bullish economic rhetoric against his stubborn refusal to comply with the Constitutional Court’s ruling that reinstated public employee benefits for FY 2007.
Good News: What’s the purpose of any election? Tell me! There’s a single purpose: the country should become stronger and people’s lives better. Are there any grounds to claim that the country is not developing economically? I’m sure that every one of us will say that no such grounds exist.
Good News: For today the economy is growing. Today we have the lowest inflation in all the years of independence.
Bad News:………………………………........................67 billion [$13.27 bn]….……....
67 billion (pause)
Good News: Today, we’ve made a decision, and we will make it happen. We will raise wages and pensions three times throughout the year.
Bad News:………………………………...........…....they suggest that we pick up the tab.
Good News:……………It’s because a great number of businesses — our hardworking Ukrainian people — are working around the clock to achieve this result.
Bad News:………………But how? (pause)………………………………Nobody said anything about that. To promise what cannot be delivered is to have no respect for the people — most of all, for ordinary people — for those whose lives are full of hardships today.
Good News: Every family and every citizen — we are all united around one common idea: We want to live a lot better than we currently do. We want our kids to live better lives than we do. And we are obliged to provide for our seniors. I know.
Bad News: ……………………………………………………………………………………………....................
…………………………………………..........................................But how? (pause) Nobody said anything about that. To promise what cannot be delivered is to have no respect for the people — most of all, for ordinary people — for those whose lives are full of hardships today.
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
"Ми не допустимо обвалу долара. Хто, що б з експертів не говорив, – ми ці політичні страшилки чуємо вже давно, – ми захистимо свою національну валюту, і не допустимо її здешевлення".
We will not allow a dollar collapse. Whatever the experts say — and we’ve been hearing these political bugaboos for a long time — we will protect our national currency and will not allow its devaluation.
Whose national currency is he talking about? Are we to assume that the Federal Reserve has members of the Yanukovych Cabinet on its payrolls?
Kobzon, Yanukovych, Chernovetsky Rock the Party, Sing a KGB Song
Iosif Kobzon, born in Chasiv Yar, Donetsk Oblast, is more than just the Frank Sinatra of the USSR. In a 2004 remake of one of his patriotic songs, Kobzon campaigned for Yanukovych and painted Yushchenko as a “civil war” candidate.
The first song, “Spyat Kurgany Temniye,” (“Sleep Befalls the Dark Hills”) is the soundtrack to Bolshaya Zhizn (A Large Life), a 1939 inspirational movie about Donbas coal miners. The film won an “Oscar” from Stalin.
A jewel of Donbas subculture, the song was mercilessly spoofed during the Orange Revolution.
The second song “Ne Dumai O Sekundakh S Vysoka” (“Think Not About Time from a Mountain High”) is the soundtrack to Semnadtsat Mgnoveniy Vesny (Seventeen Moments of Spring), a 1973 blockbuster miniseries about Otto von Stirlitz, a Soviet mole in the Third Reich. The movie became an instant hit, and joke fodder too.
Often used in sitcoms as the unofficial anthem of the KGB, "Ne Dumai O Sekundakh S Vysoka" is popular in Ukraine. However, when sung by Ukrainian public officials, the song loses most of its humor.
Kak zdorovo, chto vse my zdes
I vsyo zhe s bolyu v gorle
My tekh segodnya vspomnim,
Chyi imena, kak rany,
Na serdtse zapeklis
How great it is that all of us
Have found each other here (walks up to Chernovetsky)
With pain in our throats
We will remember those
Whose names as wounds so deeply
Upon our hearts are seared
Monday, September 24, 2007
Kyiv in Colors 2
Kyiv, Ukraine, Sept. 23, 2007, 168 hours before face-off
As the parliamentary campaign in Ukraine enters its last week, I decided to take some pics.
The Battle of Billboards
Stability and prosperity! (PRU) v. The Ukrainian Breakthrough (BYuT)
Enough fooling the people! (Kuchma Bloc) v. Happy family, successful country! (PRU)
Danilych, [Kuchma] the people are with you!
Hexed: She hit you back then, she’ll hit you again!
(a spoof on BYuT’s Zrobyla todi – zrobyt zaraz! She did it back then, she’ll do it again!)
Behind the Enemy Lines
On the Brink of "Civil War"
You see them? Don’t be surprised to find PRU and NUNS tent kiosks within striking distance of each other as they quietly pass out campaign brochures.
Stability and Prosperity, Sidewalk Edition
An elderly lady from the countryside (baba) selling apples near the food market at Shevchenko Square
Stability and Prosperity, Bazaar Edition
“Justice for Everyone” As Seen from a Marshrutka
"Boys, boys, boys, I’m looking for a good time…"
Big Blue (Kyivska Rus Movie Theater)
Big Orange (Lvivska Square)
Can’t You See How Close We Are to a Civil War, Damn It? (Maidan)
Just Another Look at “Stability and Prosperity”
Miss Mature Maidan, aka Baba Paraska
Juggling Campaign Promises
The Bubble Rush of “Better Living Today” (PRU campaign slogan in 2006)
Once Burned, Twice Cautious (Or Should We Say Copycats?)
(PRU supporters break camp at Maidan to be on standby against "election fraud.")
"I believe the children are out future, teach them well and let them lead the way…"
Revolutionaries of all colors, unite! (a NUNS tent kiosk juxtaposed next to Lenin’s Statue overlooking the Besarabsky Market)
A Picture Is Worth a Thousand Words (The Numbers Speak for Themselves)