Tuesday, 15 December 2015

whistling dixie

Not to be confused with the historical frontier region of the Russian Empire on the northern shores of the Black Sea and a buffer for Ottoman lands, the Federal Territory of Novorossiya was short-lived confederation of separatist factions that never achieved statehood, lasting only from May until the end of 2014. Some suggest (but just as ‘separatist’ and ‘loyalist’ depends on one’s perspective) that the people’s republic was designed to fail so that in exchange for return of break-away municipalities Ukraine could be persuaded to conditionally accept the annexation of the Crimea, which rings a bit like sour-grapes. The organisers’ choice of national banner seems rather unfortunate with its resemblance to the rebel flag of the American Confederate states, considering especially how after all these years the US had finally managed to secure the take-down of some symbols of hate. Yuri and Dmitri slide into the General Lee.
Inquiring into their inspiration, officials argued that their flag design was derived from the standards of the Cossacks resisting the Tartars—though such a flag never existed, though there is some similarity to the Russian imperial naval jack. By the by, although quite happy that some select major retail outlets quite vocally expressed their solidarity by no longer selling such instruments of ‘heritage,’ despite their utility for identifying useful idiots, as with Nazi memorabilia, I don’t know what to make of the leading-wave of self-censorship with the decision (equally vocal and perhaps self-serving to relegate the Dukes of Hazzard County to the memory-hole. It is not as if people ought to learn about the Civil Rights Movement, the Civil War or racism through that television series (which, on balance, was more thoughtful than I thought), but excising that embarrassment is too revisionist for my taste. Quietly drop it as a bad show not worthy of our nostalgia but not as unthink programming. What other political entities and broadcasts might be disappeared in accordance with prevailing preference and conveniently forgot. What was Mister Roper’s agenda on Three’s Company and should future generations be spared such obvious, inverted bias? What do you think?