Monday, July 16, 2018

Even Folks In Russia Hate Trump And Realize What A Worthless Untrustworthy Liar He Is


I was in Russia for a few weeks in 2016. With the exception of a couple of towns around Moscow, we only saw Moscow and St Petersburg. I found Moscovites generally cold, closed and unfriendly, in the same way tourists sometimes describe New Yorkers. I didn't like it much. St. Petersburg was the opposite: friendly, warm, open... good restaurants... So much better than Moscow to visit. But I can't say I'm a Russian expert because of my short trip to the two biggest cities in the country-- and one brief love affair. But I did go to some great museums, not just the Hermitage, but to less well-known museums, including the Museum of Political History in an off-the-beaten track part of St Petersburg. When I got back I wrote about the museum and started with a little quip about that museum:
I was really impressed that a still somewhat paranoid country barely emerging-- slowly-- from unbroken centuries of routine authoritarianism would permit such an unbiased and objective presentation of history right up to the present day. That said, no one crosses Putin in Russia and gets away with it. That painting up top of him and Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev in lingerie by Konstantin Altunin was seized by security personnel in 2013 and the artist was forced to flee and seek political asylum in France. The city of Moscow appeared to me to be particularly uptight about anything that could be interpreted as disparaging of President Putin and people there do not joke around about him. People in St. Petersburg are considerably more open and expressive and the Political History Museum included an exhibit-- neutral enough, but not fawning or complicit in his cult of personality-- on him. I very spontaneously cracked a joke in front of it tying Putin to Trump. The whole room-- primarily filled with Russians, the museum being off the beaten tourist track-- cracked up. Everyone got the joke. And, even if Putin isn't, Trump is very much a joke... at least among people in St. Petersburg who are conversant in English.
So I wasn't all that surprised when a Russian polling firm released a poll last week showing that Trump is a very unpopular figure in that country.
When asked how much they liked Donald Trump, 10 percent of respondents had a favorable opinion as opposed to 71 percent who had an unfavorable one. Nearly 1 in 5 had no opinion of the American president.

Russians were also asked what they thought of Donald Trump. Large percentages of Russians view Donald Trump as “self-centered” (77 percent) and “dangerous” (58 percent). About half would characterize him as “charismatic” (49 percent). A minority of Russians believe Trump is “strong” (34 percent) and very few would describe him as “trustworthy” (16 percent).

In comparison to Trump, Russians have a more favorable opinion of Americans, though it is still overall negative. About one-third (30 percent) of Russians view Americans favorably, 44 percent have an unfavorable opinion of Americans, and 27 percent have no opinion. The large percentage of Russians who expressed no opinion indicates a great deal of ambivalence toward Americans as a people (as opposed to the government).

However, when asked about the image of the United States, the picture that exists in the minds of most Russians is not pretty. Russians overwhelmingly describe the United States as “interfering with other countries” (86 percent) and “aggressive” (76 percent). Few Russians believe the United States is “trustworthy” (13 percent), “open to the world” (26 percent) and “democratic” (37 percent).

On the positive side, large percentages of respondents do describe the United States as having “advanced science and technology” (73 percent), being “influential” (66 percent) and having a “high standard of living” (57 percent).

Even the guy I mentioned I had an affair with, a soccer player who had just graduated from college-- I think; I can't remember exactly, just his name, Igor and meeting him on a tram-- was very anti-American. He seems to have learned it in school. Very anti-American but in bed with one. Very anti-American but a big fan of hip-hop music, very anti-American but proud he spoke English and smoked American cigarettes, very anti-American but with the aspiration of living in Miami. People I met there had a schizophrenic attitude towards the U.S., as do people all over the world these days. I've found more recently that as soon and you make it clear you hate Trump, people open up-- except in Moscow, where everyone has a poker face and never open up to strangers.

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At 6:06 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'll take that polling as proof that Russians are inculcated from birth with distrust and even hatred of americans, as part of Russians being brainwashed to think that their country is in the right.

Polling in America just proves that americans are morons.

I know the world views trump as a lying stupid racist huckster. Many envy his wealth... but know what a despicable pos he is.

Still, not all that many have correctly extrapolated this to the voters who elected him. I guess it took mankind millennia to discern gravity (Newton) as a force even though they ALL witnessed it every minute of every day as shit fell to the ground.

I guess humankind just isn't all that bright.

At 7:16 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Since Americans are inculcated from birth with distrust and even hatred of Russians, as part of Americans being brainwashed to think that their country is ALWAYS in the right, what else can one expect?

At 11:23 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Russia had their trump. his name was yeltsin and he achieved his post bwo tenure and political chops within his own system.
But he was stupid and a chronic drunk who thought all he needed to do was skim and steal.

The Russians fixed that mistake pretty quickly and now have a guy who has made their lives better (while making himself the richest person on earth).

Americans have elected their string of yeltsins for 38 years. Each one is worse than the previous. And you can say ditto for congresses.

WE cannot fix any of our own mistakes, making even worse mistakes every cycle.

How's it feel to be worse than Russia, y'all?

At 4:20 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

yeltsin also thought highly of bill Clinton and followed his advice.

Russia did far better than we did with that Clinton advice. We still revere him.
The Russians still remember the food shortages and empty store shelves.

I guess that makes us a lot dumber than the Russians. As if trump didn't already prove that.


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