Sunday’s Forum

Steven L. Taylor
About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is a Professor of Political Science and a College of Arts and Sciences Dean. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. His most recent book is the co-authored A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country Perspective. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging since 2003 (originally at the now defunct Poliblog). Follow Steven on Twitter


  1. CSK says:

    Putin’s doing his best Stalin impersonation by dragging 380,000 Ukrainians to Russia and putting them in “filtration” camps.

  2. charon says:

    To an outsider’s view, Russians appear to be suffering from a type of schizophrenia: they are both nostalgic for the Soviet Union and outwardly uber-religious (outwardly only, since this religiosity doesn’t often extend to following strict dietary or clothing prohibitions)

    They idolize both Stalin and Nicholas II. One as the prototypical “strong leader” who won the fetishized WWII, the other as a martyr saint killed by Jews. They seemingly want to restore the USSR but with churches and through some kind of a demented Christian jihad…

    Instead of viewing Europe and the West as powerful forces of evil, they view them as dens of decadence, sexual deviance, race treason and “new ethics” that lead to decay of the modern society. They view Russia as pure and simple, the last bastion of True Values…

    At the same time, the USSR is increasingly seen by the young generation as some kind of lost paradise or the idealized True Rome, where people may not have enjoyed decadent luxuries but were pure-hearted, hardy and loyal, and produced goods that were simple but of lasting quality

    A curious new church was dedicated on the outskirts of Moscow in June 2020: The Main Church of the Russian Armed Forces. The massive, khaki-colored cathedral in a military theme park celebrates Russian might. It was originally planned to open on the 75th anniversary of the Soviet Union’s victory over Nazi Germany, in May 2020, but was delayed due to the pandemic.

    Conceived by the Russian defense minister after the country’s illegal annexation of Crimea in 2014, the cathedral embodies the powerful ideology espoused by President Vladimir Putin, with strong support from the Russian Orthodox Church.

    The Kremlin’s vision of Russia connects the state, military and the Russian Orthodox Church. As a scholar of nationalism, I see this militant religious nationalism as one of the key elements in Putin’s motivation for the invasion of Ukraine, my native country. It also goes a long way in explaining Moscow’s behavior toward the collective “West” and the post-Cold War world order.

  3. charon says:


    So no, it’s not one man. It’s not just Putin. When a country loses its collective mind, it happens to millions upon millions. Germany knows what it’s like.
    This is not to say Russians are not salvageable or should be judged collectively and be found guilty by association…

    This is to say that Russia needs what Germany got: total dismantling of the state, total denazification, decades and decades of careful rebuilding along with a new national idea that ABSOLUTELY excludes ethnic nationalism and imperialism.
    There’s no other way. The rot is too deep

  4. charon says:


    Perhaps an indication of the vision the Christian Nationalists and Alt-right have for here.

  5. charon says:


    As in, where someone like Tucker Carlson is coming from.

  6. gVOR08 says:

    @charon: Picture the U. S. with a lower level of education, a long list of actual grievances, and FOX “News” having a near monopoly. Now a complete monopoly. I’m not expecting a popular uprising.

  7. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Rex Chapman

    On of the most impressive things ever…
    Quote Tweet

    · 21h
    This is so tight I didn’t know there were pogo guys

    Definitely not your grandfather’s pogo stick. Click on thru, it’s only 60 seconds and if your asshole doesn’t pucker up a time or 2, you must be dead.

  8. CSK says:


  9. Mister Bluster says:

    My parents got me a pogo stick when I was in grade school. I remember that my goal was to bounce on it 100 times without falling off.
    Took me all summer but I finally made it.
    Don’t know why they never got me a trampoline.

  10. CSK says:

    @Mister Bluster:
    Perhaps they were concerned it might come with a full complement of hot babes.

  11. Kathy says:

    Sylvia Wrigley has a good summary on the China Eastern crash.

    The only thing to add sine Friday is the flight data recorder has been found.

  12. CSK says:

    I think they found a second black box as well.

  13. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @CSK: Yes they found them both.