A Shop for Diplomats and “Select Citizens” – Back to the USSR

Russia’s Foreign Ministry has a plan to establish an exclusive shop for foreign diplomats and “select citizens”, i.e. for the members of Russian élite (news from gazeta.ru 10.2. and moscowtimes.com 11.2.2015). Only foreign currency can be used in this shop, to be located in Moscow city centre.

According the the news, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has made an official proposal for establishing a new tax free “Beryozka”. The shop will be run by private business men. The government will decide the matter.

Fine. But what do ordinary people think about these kind of plans to secure that the priviledged stay priviledged instead of creating better life for all?

«Такая богатая страна и такие бедные люди.»

If the ordinary people are having it worse and worse and the niceties of life run further and further away, how you should judge the political leadership? Is it enough to praise the warlords? Or is it really believable to blame Americans for all …?

Indeed, now when you can’t get Parmesan for the pasta and when many other goods of modern international cuisine is missing, a new shop, of course, helps those who are invited and cabable to do shopping in the new “Beryozka”.

For me, though, it looks like the shape of things to come – a step back into the queues from the stagnant Brezhnev era. The gap between everyday distress in Russia and the standard of living in the western world is widening again. I feel very sorry for all this.