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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016


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Russia Earmarks Trillions For Coal

The Russian government said it plans to provide at least 9.2 trillion rubles ($5.7 billion) in subsidies to the coal industry this year, escalating the deficit financing that is causing concern among numerous free-market economists. Earlier this week, President Boris Yeltsin and Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin promised to increase budget spending to industries and agriculture. The continuing pledges indicate that the government is caving in to pressure to open purse strings and bodes ill for controlling the money supply which some economists have warned could lead to runaway inflation. Defense Minister Pavel Grachev disclosed Tuesday that Yeltsin had agreed to deliver 2.3 trillion rubles the government owes to military industries within the first three months of this year. On Thursday, the government started to pay 67 billion rubles in debts to television stations to end a one-day blackout of stations by communications unions protesting nonpayment of wages. The proposed 9.

No More Dancing In the Dark

Russia may be suffering from cultural brain drain with many of the country's best dancers leaving for greener pastures in the West, but ballroom dancing is undergoing a significant revival. To prove that the genre is alive and kicking in the former Soviet Union, the First Open Championship of Ballroom Dancing in Russia opened Wednesday in the CSKA sports hall and ends in a grand finale competition Sunday. The dancers offer a parade of tacky costumes, but they take the championship seriously considering it a ""very prestigious event."" Man or woman, boy or girl, everyone wears heavy layers of dark pancake makeup. Women sport 1-1/2-inch long false eyelashes and fancy plastic jewelry. Boys wear patent-leather slippers, widely cut black slacks for the foxy Latin American look and tuxedos for the more conservative European dances. More than 700 couples from Russia and around the Commonwealth of Independent States, as well as a special team from Germany are taking part in the championship.

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