Yeltsin wasn't a "reformer" any more than he was a human being. He was born in a Russia where the mean ones got the house with the mill and the wood floors and the losers worked themselves to death in pits and outhouses. He left behind exactly the same country. There will be some Russians who will mourn him today, because for all his faults, he was what the Russians call nash -- "ours." With his drunkenness, his talent for making a slobbish spectacle of himself in front of the civilized leaders of the world, his apelike inability to wear a suit, his perfect and instinctive amorality, his effortless thievery, and his casual use of lethal force, he represented a type intimately familiar to all Russians.
When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
25 April 2007
His perfect and instinctive amorality
Matt Taibbi remembers Boris Yeltsin: