Older blog entries for ilgiz (starting at number 14)

3 Dec 2007 (updated 24 Oct 2008 at 23:07 UTC) »

ghee @ 2007-12-03T02:05:00

I forgot my passport and was late for the Russian elections in Toronto last Sunday. I was going to vote for Yabloko. According to the "official", state-propaganda-affected data, Yabloko scored between 1 and 2%. I can't believe the government party scored 70% in the poll stations abroad, higher than in Russia itself. The 99% scored by it in the raped and killed Chechnya is also appalling.

When I talked and communicated with few friends and acquaintances in the last 24 hours, it was a pleasure to find common grounds and share some plans with them.

Syndicated 2007-12-03 07:07:03 (Updated 2007-12-03 07:09:28) from Ilguiz (eel ghEEz) Latypov

3 Dec 2007 (updated 29 Jan 2008 at 06:17 UTC) »

I am worried about the sale of LiveJournal to SUP. Here is a picture worth many words I copied from someone else. It is a Stalin's portrait in the social realism style, with a question, "'sup?" ("What's up?") flying off his mouth.



In the good news, I found it important that Wikimedia and Advogato are officially not-for-profit, unlike LiveJournal.

Syndicated 2007-12-03 06:22:36 from Ilguiz (eel ghEEz) Latypov

3 Dec 2007 (updated 3 Dec 2007 at 14:02 UTC) »
29 Nov 2007 (updated 24 Oct 2008 at 23:07 UTC) »

ghee @ 2007-11-28T20:11:00

Vladimir Mukusev, one of the glasnost pioneers in Russian TV, says he was turned away from working as a journalist and lost his colleagues who battled against corruption.

"It is horrible that I had three friends. One friend's name was Yuri Schekochihin, the other's was Artyom Borovik, the third one's was Anna Politkovskaya. All of them have been doing journalist investigations. And they used this very freedom of speech not to enshrine their names but rather to stop the powers putting on fat. I think this is why these people were killed. And not only the journalists. One can place my other friend into the same row, Galya [Galina] Starovoitova. Because she also used any opportunity of freedom of speech. But today the freedom of speech is shrinking and dying... And it will not be able to appear from nowhere by itself!"

"Ужас в том, что у меня было три друга. Одного звали Юрий Щекочихин, другого — Артем Боровик, третьего — Анна Политковская. Все они занимались журналистскими расследованиями. И все эту самую свободу слова использовали не для того, чтобы свое имя увековечить в памяти, а не дать власти жиреть. Думаю, что поэтому этих людей уничтожили. И не только журналистов. В этот же ряд можно поставить и еще одного моего друга — Галю Старовойтову. Она ведь тоже использовала любую возможность свободы слова. Но сегодня, как шагреневая кожа, свобода слова умирает… И появиться ниоткуда, сама по себе, она не может!"

http://www.lenizdat.ru/a0/ru/pm1/c-1056380-0.html

Syndicated 2007-11-29 01:41:00 (Updated 2007-11-29 02:05:22) from Ilguiz (eel ghEEz) Latypov

19 Nov 2007 (updated 21 Apr 2011 at 18:17 UTC) »

ghee @ 2007-11-19T17:26:00

I was always surprised with the low number of investigative journalism articles in Canadian newspapers. I don't know if there is a thin line between investigation and advocacy. The [[Advocacy journalism]] article reflects on ethics and objectivity and whether journalists have to remain neutral.

Recently, the Ontario Court of Appeal allowed journalists to make honest mistakes (The Record, November 19, 2007). But the article says Canadian journalists may still face the a fine or a jail term for not disclosing their sources.

If I understand correctly, RCMP searched Juliet O'Neill's house and workplace to find her source in RCMP's ranks which leaked details on false allegations against Maher Arar. The news story said the charges against the journalist could mean a 14-year jail sentence. Thanks to the democratic system, common sense prevailed in that case. However, I would like to know if people behind the false allegations and forceful deportation of Arar were identified. I would like to know the RCMP's whistle blower's motives and whether he or she was protected from persecution.

Syndicated 2007-11-19 22:53:48 (Updated 2011-04-21 17:42:44) from Ilguiz (eel ghEEz) Latypov

15 Nov 2007 (updated 24 Oct 2008 at 23:07 UTC) »

Java codecs

What a shame! I spent few hours trying to find a decoder for Java string literals.

It turned out the Apache Commons Lang project, not Sun, provides the decoder and the encoder. I remembered its value from the time I was looking for an XML encoder to use in my JSP page.

http://commons.apache.org/lang/api/org/apache/commons/lang/StringEscapeUtils.html

http://svn.apache.org/viewvc/commons/proper/lang/trunk/src/java/org/apache/commons/lang/StringEscapeUtils.java?view=markup

I started my search when I realized that a brute force approach such as s.replace("\\\\", "\\").replace("\\n", "\n") would fail to correctly decode a legitimate sequence of 3 characters '\\', '\\' and 'n' into a string of 2 characters '\\' and 'n'. This is because multiple .replace() invocations apply per-character decoding more than once, which is wrong.

Syndicated 2007-11-08 21:52:46 (Updated 2007-11-09 21:38:44) from Ilguiz (eel ghEEz) Latypov

15 Nov 2007 (updated 1 Sep 2009 at 16:10 UTC) »

Let's bring Larisa Arap to Canada

I am in search for a Canadian health centre willing to accept a visitor from abroad.

Russian human rights defender Larisa Arap has been confined to a psychiatric hospital and badly treated for months after she took part in disclosing punitive practices in the Murmansk psychiatric hospitals (Wikipedia, Larisa Arap).[1]

Yelena Vasilyeva, a colleague of Larisa, asks if a foreign hospital would be willing to assess Arap's health (evasiljeva, August 14, 2007).[2] It may be possible to let Arap out of the hospital in Apatity on receiving such invitation.

Arap has become a victim of intentional beatings. Arap said, according to Vasilyeva,


You know, Lena, these savages, 4 men [nurses], went on undressing me. They pushed me into an ice cold shower and said, "We will cure your spine, we will take you to the violent ones in the men's department"... And then they beat me... for a long time... and tied me, stretching my arms and legs aside. Do you understand, how they beat me naked? And then these scary injections...

Arap's doctors moved her to the department of violent patients. Vasilyeva says article 29, paragraph 3 of the Russian law on psychiatric care limits involuntary confinement to those who present danger, which is not the case with Arap.


Update, August 20: Arap is harmed but free, thanks to her colleagues, supporters and relatives.



[1] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Larisa_Arap
[2] http://evasiljeva.livejournal.com/5924.html

Syndicated 2007-08-18 00:37:57 (Updated 2009-09-01 15:47:57) from Ilguiz (eel ghEEz) Latypov

15 Nov 2007 (updated 29 Nov 2012 at 02:08 UTC) »

ghee @ 2007-07-01T02:06:00

Journalist Ildar Isangulov reminds that a criminal gang member's testimony against Igor Izmestyev, a Bashkir representative in Russia's Upper House, can hardly be credible. The "Putin attack" suspect Alexander Pumane beaten to death by Moscow criminal investigators [1][2] was later linked to the same gang. The journalist asks if the gang members were threatened with a similar treatment and forced to give a false testimony against Izmestyev.

"Siloviks" have been a staple of Russian history for ages.

Just as a prominent poet Ilya Kormiltsev, I can't wait to see a dance floor in place of Kremlin.

An old time dissident Vladimir Bukovsky recognized the disadvantage of concentrating all-Russia rule in one place and suggested to decentralize the federal system should he become a president.

No wonder Vladimir Sorokin, the author of Oprichnik's Day, favoured Bukovsky's candidacy. I agree with Sorokin's point that the tyrannical past has returned. The good Kremlin is the dance floor Kremlin.

Syndicated 2007-07-01 07:06:31 (Updated 2012-11-28 23:35:41) from Ilguiz (eel ghEEz) Latypov

Body of evidence

It was not until this week that an amendment to a Russian law on burying and funeral arrangements came into a light. According to Novaya Gazeta, Putin signed the amendment suggested by Duma one month after the Dubrovka hostage taking. The amendment prohibits from returning the bodies of those who were killed "as a result of interception of their terrorist activity". The location of the burials is also a secret.

According to Alexander Podrabinek, such amendment makes it impossible to find the exact cause of death and avoid falsification.

On June 28, 2007 Russian Constitutional Court confirmed the amendment.

It seems that the only governing body in Russia is the European Court of Human Rights.

Syndicated 2007-06-30 18:10:54 from Ilguiz (eel ghEEz) Latypov

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