Protecting power

4 10 2012

Readers may find an op-ed by Edward Lucas  of The Economist at European Voice of some interest. While the article is about the Russian regime and the Russian Orthodox Church, the attempts to restrict free speech based on “cultural norms.”

In fact, Thailand comes up with thes lese majeste law mentioned as restricting freedom of speech as being intended to “preserve the powerful (the Thai royal family)…”. This is in a context of arguments that “Western values” – democracy perhaps – are a threat to “cultural values.”

The real point of restrictions in Russia is that “the regime in Russia has run out of steam. It needs to invent threats to justify its rule. Competition is threatening for those who feel weak, not strong.” That sounds familiar.


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