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02 Aug 2002 :: I'm frequently asked "What is it like there in Romania?", "Anything interesting over there?", etc... [ more.. ]

22 Mar 2003 :: Another thing local citizens are proud of is the existance of a great number of non-stop shops. Really, it's quite strange for Romania, since people from the services are doesn't seem to like working too much... [ more.. ]

03 Mar 2002 :: A courious reader will ask me how are various open source programs developments going and if I've done anything new recently... [ more.. ]

[ 30th Dec 2002 ] global worlds | leave a comment |

This global, global world

The preparations for Christmas, which Romanians celebrate on the 25th like Catholics in spite of being Orthodox, is going on full steam. I've just came back home from the supermarket nearby, which is located 50 meters from my block. The line to the cash-register was just like in old times. Standing there, I was looking on the either side, examining people, shelves and goods.. In such places the strong spirit of consumerism is usually felt. Probably, the word must be written with a capital letter, like this: Consumerism, no any other way. It is a power that drives society these days. I can see packets with coffee, an inscription made with big letters: "noul ambalaj", which means "new pack". Well, just out of couriosity, am I interesting in the package or do I need a coffee anyway? Am I going to eat the pack or something? And what makes this new one better than the old one?

The main word here is "new". Brand new stuff, mean you've gotta buy it. Otherwise the Consumerism will stop, give out. Brand new! Don't think - buy. Consume. In this very case there is nothing wrong with it. However, recently an absolutely unknown guy sent a link to my ICQ account with a link to the flash movie which demonstrates someone's point of view very well. Probably this point can be called antiglobalism or something, but it says quite obvious things. Well done.

The 13 years anniversary

But besides Christmas, these days Romania is remembering its Revolution heroes. When they say "revolution" here, they mean the events of 1989 that resulted into the gloomy dictator Ceausescu being shot on the 25th December. He was ruling the country for 24 years after he came to power in 1965. The protests started in Timisoara, a city in the West part of the country and then were supported in all the major localities, finally arriving in Bucharest. The army got an order to break up the demonstrations with force, some people were shot. Recently I saw chronicles on the local Realitatea channel: a crowd of desperate people chanting "Libertatea!" (liberty). They had reasons to dispair. The local government man who was also called "Carpathian genious" who, having distanced from the USSR and took a lot of debts in the West, decided to make his country autonomous and independent of everyone, shunning the Soviets and the West. In order to pay off the country's debts faster, he set to the task of economizing. Everything, starting from simple provisions and ending with electricity, was given to the population portionally. For food there were cards, like in the USSR with Stalin in 30's, and water and light were on only several hours each day. Plus, there were several hours of TV every day, filled only with propaganda, obviously. It was also illegal to go outside after 10pm, like it was war.

My personal conclusion is that such a "nice" governer I would kill myself. I remember back in 1989 we in USSR were bewildered "savages, gipsies". Caught and immediately shot along with his wife, without a trial or investigation. It turns out, there were reasons. And a short trial took place exactly in the place where the dictator's helicopter landed, in a village near Bucharest. For some reason he decided to not to escape abroad, but to resolve the problems himself. Probably he was that sure about his power. They also say that being totally embarassed, Ceausescu was giving orders "to stop all of this circus". Like an allmighty king who ordered the sky to clear out the clouds and completely stricken by the fact that nothing happened.

On the other hand, those who believe in a pure and crushing people's anger, which can appear without someone's help, should think about the fact that shortly before the events of 13 years ago, at one of their meetings, Gorbachov and Mitterand discussed the topic of Romania, and even, according to some sources, came up with a decision that it was time for Ceausescu to go. Yes, that's global.

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