Putin and his neo-Soviet Charlatans
An extraordinary recent article in the Wall Street Journal tells the tale of one Victor Petrik, a neo-Soviet charlatan with close ties to the Putin regime. The story is eerily similar to that of another close Kremlin confident, Professor Igor Panarin, who predicted that the USA would collapse before this year is out.
Last month, the Moscow Times reported that Petrik, who operates a website at GoldFormula.ru, had served prison time in the 1980s for fraud and extortion and had gone too far even for the Kremlin by attempting to market one of his products under the name of Putin’s Emergency Situations Minister Sergei Shoigu. But Petrik had been allowed to use the logo of Putin’s United Russia party after winning a clean water competition they had sponsored. The MT pointed out that Petrik had “no formal training in any applied science.”
The WSJ reports: “Boris Gryzlov, the speaker of Russia’s parliament and No. 2 in the party, have publicly endorsed his products. The two men are listed as the authors of a patent granted in 2009 for a filter that Mr. Petrik says can turn radioactive waste into water that’s safe to drink.” The WSJ quotes Eduard Kruglyakov of the Russian Academy of Sciences: “He’s a master of bluff. He hasn’t discovered anything.” Another Petrik critic admits that Putin’s Russia is “especially vulnerable” to pseudoscience.
Petrik “invents” new science by hypnotizing himself, including water filters that he claims use nanotechnology — you know, that stuff that’s so convenient because you can’t see it since it’s so small, and therefore nobody really knows if it’s there at all. Kruglyakov says that, in fact, it isn’t.
Gryzlov refused to talk to the WSJ about Petrik. The WSJ reports: “A year ago, Mr. Gryzlov visited Mr. Petrik’s labs with the head of Rusnano, the state nanotechnology company, according to Rusnano and Mr. Petrik. Seven months later, Rusnano approved 79 million rubles ($2.6 million) in venture funding for Mr. Petrik’s project to extract the chemical element rhenium from scrap. Rusnano says the project met its strict technical standards.”
Putin is a big fan of Petrik’s. The WSJ releates:
[Petrik] spent much of the 1980s in prison. Yevgeny Zubarev, a journalist who wrote frequently about Mr. Petrik in the 1990s, says he saw the criminal file and the central charge was smuggling antique furniture. Mr. Petrik acknowledges he was in prison but declined to comment on the charges. After Mr. Petrik won early release in 1989, St. Petersburg officials asked him to make the rare metal isotope osmium-187 in his basement lab to sell for export, he says. But the plan fell apart when Russian customs agents stopped a shipment of samples bound for Germany for lack of export permits. A top city official involved later told a local newspaper that he was initially skeptical of the scheme but was convinced after he met the “inventor.” That official was Vladimir Putin, now Russia’s prime minister.
Putin, like Gryzlov, refused to talk to the WSJ about Petrik.
History shows us that when you create a government shielded by secrecy and full of sycophants, political leaders are capable of any amount of deranged behavior one can imagine. Stalin’s GULAG archipelago is the ultimate expression of this phenonmenon. Russia is governed by illiterate cretins, little different from a mafia clan, and it is hardly surprising that this is what they have come to view as “science.”
What we are witnessing is nothing less than the KGB-inspired degernation of Russian society, which is now headed for exactly the same type of collapse that ruined the USSR.