Russia is Corrupt but at Least Russia Knows it…

On my train trip to Ukraine I had the opportunity to talk with a man who had been a Merchant Seaman for the Soviet Union. He was born near Lake Baikal in Siberia. When he reached 17 years old he relocated to St. Petersburg. Then he completed his schooling as a merchant seaman. He also got his Doctorate in Aquatics Biology. Once him and I realize that I am a Biologist in Genetics and he in Aquatics. It was just too much fun and 8 hours later it was time for him to get off the train. He lived in a Russian border town…

I am telling you this about him because he is an intellect and is very worldly and well traveled. I know that many of you think that I am some idiot from America that has no sense at all. But I am an intellect and worldly and well traveled…

Our conversation covered topics from Biology to Politics…

To make a long, very long, story short. I will communicate about one part of our conversation that hit home with me. Lets talk about corruption…

He asked me a question. It was something that has bothered him and we had turned to politics at this time in the conversation. He asked me, Why do Americans ignore their own corruption? He then went on to explain that he had friends who had moved to America and are now back in Russia. He had had talks with these friends and one thing that they saw time and time again in America was the ignorance of corruption that is everywhere and present in all aspects of American life. From given gifts to the teacher, to kickbacks in the corporate world…

I absorbed that information while he continued. He then went on to say that in Ukraine and Russia and many other countries from the CIS. That we are corrupt and we know it. We do not hide the fact. We do not ignore the fact. We are very open about corruption, it is part of our life and we know it…

But, and this is where I realized that he is very correct. He said that in all his travels around the world from Soviet era to modern times. He saw a Western world full of corruption and bribes were rampant. But everyone turns their heads, if at all possible. He said that his friends experienced the same situation in America and they were always baffled at the fact that people in America looked the other way when corruption happened. But if ever it was discovered then they acted like it was the worst thing that ever happened. Like it was the only time that it has happened. People (Westerns) seemed to feel that if you do not see it or notice it, then it was and is not happening. So just do not look for it… (Sorta a see no evil, hear no evil and speak no evil!)

He then waited for an answer from me. Now if you know me, from reading my blog then you have a very good idea about what I would say in response. I will make it short and say that East and West have very different ideas about what constitutes corruption and a perfect example is the lobbying system in the government in America. Nothing on earth is more corrupt and pathetic than that…

Definition for lobbyist: someone who is employed to persuade legislators to vote for legislation that favors the lobbyist’s employer. Usually accompanied by money, power and greed…

The bottom line is that the Western world is very corrupt but unlike the Eastern world that makes jokes about her corruption and discusses corruption at the dinner table as an everyday conversation. The Western world likes to facade over the issue of corruption and bribes and only deal with them when they rear their ugly heads and no longer can be ignored…

I found the train ride this time to be a stimulating ride and the topics of discussion were varied. Maybe I will write another article about some of the things we talked about. Sorry, but I won’t bore you with our discussion on Invertebrate Zoology… 🙂

Post by Kyle Keeton
Windows to Russia!

kKEETON @ Windows to Russia…

Permission to reprint in whole or in part is gladly granted, provided full credit is given...

A survivor of six heart attacks and a brain tumor, a grumpy bear of a man, who has declared Russia as his new and wonderful home (&) Honestly, I have no idea how much to ask for, but is a gift of even $1 something you'd be able to consider, to help keep Windows to Russia online in a Tiny Russian Village?

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