Bloopers have always been fun. A good collective laugh is a healthy thing for a society. This would be a perfect year to start the "Democracy Blooper Awards." Here are my favourite anti-democratic moments of 2012. Even at its best democracy has proven to be an out-of-control PR performance where points are given for best spin, rather than outcome.
What, one wonders, are the "secrets" S/Lt. Deslisle would be handing off or peddling to the Russians? We don't have much of a navy these days, and telling the Russians (presuming Delisle was) which dry-dock our four aging submarines (that the British conned us into buying) are being repaired in, can't be a much of an espionage coup.
The fact that the top politician in Russia can be denounced in the streets with something resembling impunity, is reassuring and evidence of democracy. Russia is not the old Soviet Union where criticism was viewed as treason, and elections were won by 98 per cent of the vote going to the only candidate on the ballot.
Now that it no longer aspires to take over the world -- or at least subvert Western countries -- Russia is not the threat to peace that it once was. Even when I lived in Moscow, true communism was never really practiced. Most Muscovites had clandestine deals going on, where they could manipulate or cheat the system.