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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Privatization Blacklist

In Russia very soon, a group of outraged intellectuals will form the "Societal Tribunal," an organization to keep close watch over the privatization process. ...

As one might expect, this cold-blooded retribution for businessmen who have taken advantage of the government's good will was conceived in the bowels of the LDPR Duma faction.

According to the plan's author, deputy chairman of the Duma's economic policy committee Vladimir Lisichkin, the new organization's primary purpose is "to assist in the development of a democratic state and society based on the rule of law." To accomplish this, the tribunal's first order of business will be to compile a privatization "blacklist" that includes those who own businesses of key significance to the Russian economy that were either sold off for kopeks or privatized illegally.

The tribunal's charter is very hazy about just what exceptional measures will be dished out to those guilty of making off with state property.

It would appear that the fate of each and every "enemy of the people" will be determined by some kind of military field court.

It's interesting to note that the idea has already found resonance among the people. Some of the country's top-notch individuals -- professors and even academicians at some of Russia's leading universities -- have agreed without much thought to join this commission. And they have asked Alexander Solzhenitsyn to head the Societal Tribunal. Of course, he has politely refused, citing his already full work schedule.

The name of the new organization probably stirred up unpleasant memories for the once-repressed author.

And so the position of chief superintendent is still vacant.

Moskovsky Komsomolets, Sept. 23.