Aslan retraction, Gunava Kalandadze off, Medvedev says stuff, Patriarch likes Stalin, factcheck.ge, Koba bolts from Dream, occupation protests, growth numbers (or not), criminal numbers (or not), priest rioter let off, Abkhaz church wants out, Misha on UNM, fly ash import, Thea looks at election violations, Bolnisi’s mukhtahora, Zestaponians ticked about Bendukidze’s cheap old wine, Rustavi Dreamers want jobs, prison strikes, thief-in-law law, TI on Margvel using state resources to campaign, Azeris PNG Turashvili and Khvedelidze for Karabakh trip, Kazbegi road limestone damaged, Zakro on virgins, International ad cash down, expired goods, demography and dating, Yerevan and Kuwait flights, foreclosure bill BI slap down, PM/pres balance

4 thoughts on “TBLPOD8aug2013

  1. SovLab’s official response to Ilia II’s statement about Stalin:
    “The statement is a falsification of historical facts: it is enough to take a look at the number of Communist regime victims, including representatives of Georgia’s clergy destroyed as a result of large-scale repressions. Any attempt to rehabilitate the name of Joseph Stalin is disrespectful and a humiliation to millions of repressed people and their descendants. It is impossible to establish in Georgia a democratic and people-oriented society if we do not rethink properly and free ourselves from the Soviet totalitarian past. Such statements, unfortunately, are only inhibiting this process. Given the enormous authority of the Patriarch of Georgia, it is highly undesirable, especially considering the recent political decision to restore Stalin’s monument, to spread myths praising the Soviet dictator. For the democratic development of the country, we once again emphasize the importance of fundamental research and analysis of the Soviet period in Georgia. We urge scientists, politicians, the media and Georgian society as a whole, to research and understand the crimes committed by the Soviet system and thus pay tribute to the memory of Stalinism’s victims.”
    Link in Georgian: http://sovlab.ge/ka/node/714

    The meme this week is a video of a priest and small congregation praying outside with an icon that depicts Stalin, Churchill and Roosevelt under halos. Link: http://goo.gl/94TO4J

    Things to Read:
    **Bidzina’s article published in the Wall Street Journal titled “ Progress Through Pragmatism in Georgia”. Link: http://goo.gl/VbWrlU

    **MP Zura Japaridze’s “Open Letter to the Prime Minister of Georgia”, published in Tabula which strongly critiques Bidzina’s handling of the Georgian economy. Link: http://goo.gl/HDsTwd

    **An article about Georgian wine making practices published in the Financial Times titled “Georgian wines: older and wiser” by Andrew Jefford. Link: http://goo.gl/gKxIZF

    ** Judy Dempsey’s article “Kremlin Tries Charm to Counter EU” published in the New York Times. Link: http://goo.gl/ealXLz

    **Radio Free Europe/ Radio Liberty’s article titled “Five Years After The War, South Caucasus Still Caught Between Russia, The West”. Link: http://goo.gl/zuavcM

    **And the New Republic’s article about Subutex called “Subu Must Die: How a nation of junkies went cold turkey” which discusses how Georgia eliminated subutex from the streets. Link: http://goo.gl/y5UbYm

  2. From TBLPOD’s very own Santa Monica Bureau Chief:

    August 7, 2013

    Ahead of the fifth anniversary of the so-called “five-day war” between
    Russia and Georgia back in August 2008, more Russians show a positive
    attitude towards Georgia, Russian privately-owned Interfax news agency
    reported on 7 August, quoting the results of a recent poll conducted
    by an independent pollster, the Levada Centre. Link in Russian: http://goo.gl/cJAGm5

    The full results of the poll were published on the Levada Centre
    website on the same day. The survey was conducted on 18-22 July 2013 among 1,601 people aged 18 and over, in 130 towns and villages in 45 regions. The statistical margin of error is 3.4 per cent, the website said.

    When asked about their general attitude towards Georgia, some 44 per
    cent of the respondents chose the “generally positive” option (in 2012
    it was chosen by 39 and back in September 2008 by 15 per cent of those
    polled). The number of those who had a negative attitude towards
    Georgia has dropped from 40 in 2008 to 32 per cent, although in
    comparison with 2012, the number has almost remained the same
    (increasing slightly from 31 per cent). In the meantime, the number of
    those who chose the option “very bad” has dropped from 34 in 2008 and
    12 per cent in 2012 to 8 per cent; and of those who chose “very good”
    was still quite low, rising from 1 per cent in 2008 to 4 per cent in
    2012 and 2013.

    Asked whether the Georgian breakaway regions, Abkhazia and South
    Ossetia, should be independent, a relative majority of the polled, the
    same as in 2012, said yes (42 and 43 per cent respectively), while one
    in three respondents said Abkhazia and South Ossetia should become
    part of Russia (30 and 29 per cent). Only 9 per cent of those polled
    said Abkhazia should be part of Georgia and some 7 per cent said the
    same about South Ossetia.

    In the meantime, some 48 and 45 per cent of those polled respectively
    believe Abkhazia and South Ossetia are currently independent states,
    while 28 and 27 per cent think they are part of Russia and 11 and 13
    per cent respectively, part of Georgia (as compared with 2012, the
    number has slightly increased from 9 for Abkhazia and 8 per cent for
    South Ossetia).

    The poll also suggests that the recognition of Abkhazia and South
    Ossetia as independent states by Russia back in 2008 is gradually
    losing its significance in the eyes of people since only 20 per cent
    of those polled think Russia benefited from the move (40 per cent in
    2008 and 28 in 2012 respectively). At the same time, the majority of
    the polled (49 per cent) believe the move “brought neither benefit nor
    harm” to the country (28 per cent in 2008 and 48 per cent in 2012),
    and some 11 per cent of the respondents think the move did not bring
    any good to Russia (same as in 2012).

  3. Don’t miss the Organized Crime & Corruption Reporting Project’s first package on Georgia, “Sex, Files and Videotape,” which builds on the excellent work of Transparency International-Georgia. TI and various Georgian media outlets have doggedly followed the dribs and drabs of revelations about the extensive surveillance system refined over the past decade, and OCCRP pulled it all together and talked to as many of the human beings affected as possible. Read it and weep at: https://reportingproject.net/occrp/

  4. The Georgian Post declared an international contest to create a new mailbox design. The Georgian Post will purchase the best design from the author. To view this private contest, you must create an account on 99designs.com.

    1. Go to 99designs.com, and click on the “Designers, join us” button on the right side of the page.
    2. Create a profile
    3. Then click “Browse” and search for “Post” OR go to this website, link: http://goo.gl/iTB2XW.

    Please note: you will not be able to view this webpage unless you have created an account!

    Here is more info on the contest:

    “Our company requires the design of post boxes (street mailboxes) that might be installed in streets of our city. These are the boxes where people throw their outgoing letters into.

    The requirements are as follows:

    1. Design should be modern (as opposed to the conservative nature of the Post business). Can be (is desired to be) eye-catchy (though should not be very “offending”), or can be minimalistic but tasteful. You are totally free with your imagination. Only requirement is that it should not be dull/ordinary/traditional.
    2. Design should be practical, i.e. the practical characteristics of the postal box typical usage should be considered. E.g. the design that makes placement or retrieval of letters to/from the box uncomfortable is obviously undesired. We don’t have any particular requirements on the shape or dimensions. It’s just that it should be practical!
    3. It should be something that can be practically implemented and mass-produced. The implementation costs will be considered, i.e. the shape that is visually outstanding, but requires very complex and costly manual work to be actually implemented, might be discarded.

    We require the design of stand-alone street post boxes. But if you can also provide the design of smaller wall-mounted boxes (also to be installed in public places), that would be a big plus.

    Our corporate color is a tone of blue, though it is not a strict requirement. You can find the company’s logo (that should be placed on the box) as an attachment.

    Thank you for your efforts in advance!”

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