15 July 2015

Ukrainian Humor is Odd

Have you heard the one about how the Ukraine Prime Minister wants to reduce corruption in the country by privitizing state assets?

I'm not quite sure what the punch line is, but it's clearly a joke: There has never been a privitization deal that has lessened corruption:
Ukraine's Prime Minister is calling on Canadian investors to take part in a massive privatization of state assets organized by Kiev as a way of weakening the power of wealthy oligarchs blamed for spreading corruption in his country.

Arseniy Yatsenyuk cited, for instance, Ukrainian businessmen who have been "sitting like vampires" on the country's publicly owned energy sector.

Mr. Yatsenyuk spoke to The Globe and Mail Tuesday after he joined Prime Minister Stephen Harper in Chelsea, Que., to announce that Ukraine and Canada had struck a free-trade deal.

Ukraine is preparing to spin off billions of dollars of government enterprises – including power generation and distribution assets and chemical plants – and the government wants Western investors to bring more orderly business methods to the Eastern European country.

"I don't want Ukrainian tycoons to buy these state-owned enterprises," Mr. Yatsenyuk said. "We would be happy to see Canadian folks buying Ukrainian assets and bringing into Ukraine good corporate governance, new investment and new jobs.

"That is what I asked the Canadian Prime Minister: 'Please tell your investors and your businesses to jump into Ukraine.'"

Mr. Yatsenyuk said Ukraine's leadership feels privatization and deregulation are the answers to the corruption that has plagued the country for decades.

"Big government always leads to big bribes and big corruption, so the less regulations you have the less authority the government has and the less chances to take bribes," Mr. Yatsenyuk said.
OK, this isn't a joke.  It's a lie.

It's a lie that is driven by a need to placate his masters in the west who want to buy state assets at pennies on the dollar.

It's what Naomi Klein has called The Shock Doctrine, where, "Leaders exploit crises to push through controversial exploitative policies while citizens are too emotionally and physically distracted by disasters or upheavals to mount an effective resistance."

To call this an anti-corruption measure is like calling a case of the Clap aid to picking up women.


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